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Sample records for african cucumis species

  1. Chromosome synteny in cucumis species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumber, Cucumis sativus L. (2n = 2x = 14) and melon, C. melo L. (2n = 2x = 24) are two important vegetable species in the genus Cucumis (family Cucurbitaceae). Two inter-fertile botanical varieties with 14 chromosomes, the cultivated C. sativus var. sativus L. and the wild C. sativus var. hardwick...

  2. Cucumis zambianus (Cucurbitaceae): A New Species from Northwestern Zambia

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    During germplasm explorations within Zambia in 1984, seven Cucumis accessions were collected that could not be identified to species. Two of the accessions were studied in-depth. Based on phenotypic characters, they were closest to Cucumis pustulatus. In ITS analyses of all available Cucumis spec...

  3. Chromosome-specific painting in Cucumis species using bulked oligonucleotides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Chromosome-specific painting is a powerful technique in molecular cytogenetic and genome research. We developed an oligonucleotide (oligo)-based chromosome painting technique in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) that will be applicable in any plant species with a sequenced genome. Oligos specific to a sing...

  4. Chromosome-Specific Painting in Cucumis Species Using Bulked Oligonucleotides

    PubMed Central

    Han, Yonghua; Zhang, Tao; Thammapichai, Paradee; Weng, Yiqun; Jiang, Jiming

    2015-01-01

    Chromosome-specific painting is a powerful technique in molecular cytogenetic and genome research. We developed an oligonucleotide (oligo)-based chromosome painting technique in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) that will be applicable in any plant species with a sequenced genome. Oligos specific to a single chromosome of cucumber were identified using a newly developed bioinformatic pipeline and then massively synthesized de novo in parallel. The synthesized oligos were amplified and labeled with biotin or digoxigenin for use in fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). We developed three different probes with each containing 23,000–27,000 oligos. These probes spanned 8.3–17 Mb of DNA on targeted cucumber chromosomes and had the densities of 1.5–3.2 oligos per kilobases. These probes produced FISH signals on a single cucumber chromosome and were used to paint homeologous chromosomes in other Cucumis species diverged from cucumber for up to 12 million years. The bulked oligo probes allowed us to track a single chromosome in early stages during meiosis. We were able to precisely map the pairing between cucumber chromosome 7 and chromosome 1 of Cucumis hystrix in a F1 hybrid. These two homeologous chromosomes paired in 71% of prophase I cells but only 25% of metaphase I cells, which may provide an explanation of the higher recombination rates compared to the chiasma frequencies between homeologous chromosomes reported in plant hybrids. PMID:25971668

  5. Cucumber (Cucumis sativus) and melon (C. melo) have numerous wild relatives in Asia and Australia, and the sister species of melon is from Australia

    PubMed Central

    Sebastian, Patrizia; Schaefer, Hanno; Telford, Ian R. H.; Renner, Susanne S.

    2010-01-01

    Among the fundamental questions regarding cultivated plants is their geographic origin and region of domestication. The genus Cucumis, which includes cucumber (Cucumis sativus) and melon (Cucumis melo), has numerous wild African species, and it has therefore been assumed that melon originated in Africa. For cucumber, this seemed less likely because wild cucumbers exist in India and a closely related species lives in the Eastern Himalayas. Using DNA sequences from plastid and nuclear markers for some 100 Cucumis accessions from Africa, Australia, and Asia, we show here that melon and cucumber are of Asian origin and have numerous previously overlooked species-level relatives in Australia and around the Indian Ocean. The wild progenitor of C. melo occurs in India, and our data confirm that the Southeast Asian Cucumis hystrix is the closest relative of cucumber. Most surprisingly, the closest relative of melon is Cucumis picrocarpus from Australia. C. melo diverged from this Australian sister species approximately 3 Ma, and both diverged from the remaining Asian/Australian species approximately 10 Ma. The Asian/Australian Cucumis clade comprises at least 25 species, nine of them new to science, and diverged from its African relatives in the Miocene, approximately 12 Ma. Range reconstruction under maximum likelihood suggests Asia as the ancestral area for the most recent common ancestor of melon and cucumber, fitting with both having progenitor populations in the Himalayan region and high genetic diversity of C. melo landraces in India and China. Future investigations of wild species related to melon and cucumber should concentrate on Asia and Australia. PMID:20656934

  6. Organization of highly repetitive satellite DNA of two Cucurbitaceae species (Cucumis melo and Cucumis sativus).

    PubMed Central

    Hemleben, V; Leweke, B; Roth, A; Stadler, J

    1982-01-01

    The prominent satellites of the Cucurbitaceae Cucumis melo (melon) and Cucumis sativus (cucumber) have been characterized, in actinomycin/CsCl gradients where the satellite sequences can be separated from ribosomal, organelle, and main band DNA the location of the satellites is different indicating a different GC content. The purified satellite of C. melo is cut by HindIII into a repeat unit of 380 bp; AluI digestion gives rise to two bands (about 80 and 220 bp in size). The HindIII repeat unit if cloned into pBR325 exhibits new recognition sites for HpaII leaving two bands with 150 and 80 bp suggesting methylation of the C/CGG cutting site in the uncloned material. The restriction pattern indicates an internal sequence repeat within the 380 bp HindIII fragment. The C. sativus satellite is cut by AluI to a repeat unit of 180 bp showing no other recognition site for the restriction enzymes tested so far. About 10% sequence homology has been determined between the C. melo and C. sativus satellites by cross hybridization studies. A high methylation degree of cytosines has been measured for both satellites and the ribosomal DNA of C. sativus (about 30%). No transcription products of the C. melo satellite were found during seedling development. Images PMID:6278425

  7. A new Australian species of Luffa (Cucurbitaceae) and typification of two Australian Cucumis names, all based on specimens collected by Ferdinand Mueller in 1856

    PubMed Central

    Telford, Ian R. H.; Schaefer, Hanno; Greuter, Werner; Renner, Susanne S.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract As a result of his botanical explorations in northern Australia, Ferdinand von Mueller named several Cucurbitaceae that molecular data now show to be distinct, requiring their resurrection from unjustified synonymy. We here describe and illustrate Luffa saccata F. Muell. ex I.Telford, validating a manuscript name listed under Luffa graveolens Roxb. since 1859, and we lectotypify Cucumis picrocarpus F. Muell. and Cucumis jucundus F. Muell. The lectotype of the name Cucumis jucundus, a synonym of Cucumis melo, is mounted on the same sheet as the lectotype of Cucumis picrocarpus, which is the sister species of the cultivated Cucumis melo as shown in a recent publication. PMID:22171190

  8. CYTOGENETICAL TREATISE OF INDIAN REPRESENTATIVE SPECIES OF CUCUMIS. A KARYOTYPIC APPROACH.

    PubMed

    Rajkumari, K; John, K J; Yadav, S R; Bhat, K V; Shamurailatpam, A; Rao, S R

    2015-01-01

    Karyomorphological studies have been carried out in nine species and five varieties of the genus Cucumis representing Indian gene pool. The present investigations reveal the occurrence of two somatic chromosome numbers 2n = 14, 24 in the genus. C. ritchiei and C. indicus the two new species, were found to be having somatic chromosome numbers of 2n = 24 and 2n = 20 respectively. The wild species viz. C. hystrix, C. setosus, C. prophetarum, C. dipsaceus, C. indicus have very less number of median-centromeric chromosomes, high asymmetry indices, while melon groups have intermediate number of median -centromeric chromosomes. C. sativus, C. callosus, C. ritchiei show lesser number median-cen-tromeric chromosomes and very less asymmetry indices. The importance of karyotypic variation with respect to speciation within the genus Cucumis have been discussed. PMID:26841494

  9. A Potential Pathway for Galactose Metabolism in Cucumis sativus L., A Stachyose Transporting Species 1

    PubMed Central

    Gross, Kenneth C.; Pharr, David M.

    1982-01-01

    Conversion of [14C]galactose (Gal) 1-P, UDP-[14C]Gal, or UDP-[14C]glucose to [14C]sucrose was observed when cell-free homogenates of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) fruit peduncles were incubated with individual 14C-labeled substrates, appropriate cofactors, and fructose. The sucrose product was labeled only in the glucose moiety. Conversion of [14C]Gal-1-P to [14C]sucrose was catalyzed by extracts of peduncles from all other stachyose transporting species tested, as well as green bean (a sucrose transporter) but was not catalyzed by peduncle extracts from three other sucrose transporting species. In cucumber, the ability of extracts to form [14C]sucrose from [14C]Gal-1-P was greater when peduncles were harvested from growing fruit than from unpollinated ovaries. [14C]Sucrose formation from [14C]Gal-1-P was inhibited by Mg · PPi, Mg · UDP, UMP, and sucrose. α-Galactosidase, galactokinase, UDP-gal pyrophosphorylase, UDP-Gal-4′-epimerase, UDP-glucose pyrophosphorylase, and sucrose synthase activities were detected in peduncle extracts. Neither sucrose phosphate synthetase nor hexose-1-P uridyltransferase were detected. Peduncle tissue contained a small pool of free galactose. These results suggest a potential pathway for the metabolism of galactose moieties hydrolyzed from stachyose, the major sugar transported by cucumber plants. PMID:16662141

  10. Snapmelon (Cucumis melo L. subsp. agrestis var. momordica), indigenous cucurbitaceous vegetable species from India with immense breeding value: a review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Snapmelon (Cucumis melo L. Momordica Group; 2n = 2x = 24) is native to India, where it is widely cultivated and is commonly called ‘phut,’ which means to split. Immature fruits are cooked or eaten raw. In this paper we review the wealth of genetic resources in Indian snapmelon landraces for resistan...

  11. Mechanisms of decreasing dysploidy in Cucumis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In Cucumis (family Cucurbitaceae), cucumber (C. sativus) is the only species with 2n = 2x = 14 chromosomes. The majority of the remaining species, including melon (C. melo) and C. hystrix, have 2n = 2x = 24 chromosomes suggesting a reduction from n = 12 to n = 7. To understand the underlying mechani...

  12. Biological and Molecular Characterization of a Korean Isolate of Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows virus Infecting Cucumis Species in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Seung-Kook; Yoon, Ju-Yeon; Choi, Gug-Seoun

    2015-01-01

    Surveys of yellowing viruses in plastic tunnels and in open field crops of melon (Cucumis melo cultivar catalupo), oriental melon (C. melo cultivar oriental melon), and cucumber (C. sativus) were carried out in two melon-growing areas in 2014, Korea. Severe yellowing symptoms on older leaves of melon and chlorotic spots on younger leaves of melon were observed in the plastic tunnels. The symptoms were widespread and included initial chlorotic lesions followed by yellowing of whole leaves and thickening of older leaves. RT-PCR analysis using total RNA extracted from diseased leaves did not show any synthesized products for four cucurbit-infecting viruses; Beet pseudo-yellows virus, Cucumber mosaic virus, Cucurbit yellows stunting disorder virus, and Melon necrotic spot virus. Virus identification using RT-PCR showed Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows Virus (CABYV) was largely distributed in melon, oriental melon and cucumber. This result was verified by aphid (Aphis gossypii) transmission of CABYV. The complete coat protein (CP) gene amplified from melon was cloned and sequenced. The CP gene nucleotide and the deduced amino acid sequence comparisons as well as phylogenetic tree analysis of CABYV CPs showed that the CABYV isolates were undivided into subgroups. Although the low incidence of CABYV in infections to cucurbit crops in this survey, CABYV may become an important treat for cucurbit crops in many different regions in Korea, suggesting that CABYV should be taken into account in disease control of cucurbit crops in Korea. PMID:26673519

  13. Biological and Molecular Characterization of a Korean Isolate of Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows virus Infecting Cucumis Species in Korea.

    PubMed

    Choi, Seung-Kook; Yoon, Ju-Yeon; Choi, Gug-Seoun

    2015-12-01

    Surveys of yellowing viruses in plastic tunnels and in open field crops of melon (Cucumis melo cultivar catalupo), oriental melon (C. melo cultivar oriental melon), and cucumber (C. sativus) were carried out in two melon-growing areas in 2014, Korea. Severe yellowing symptoms on older leaves of melon and chlorotic spots on younger leaves of melon were observed in the plastic tunnels. The symptoms were widespread and included initial chlorotic lesions followed by yellowing of whole leaves and thickening of older leaves. RT-PCR analysis using total RNA extracted from diseased leaves did not show any synthesized products for four cucurbit-infecting viruses; Beet pseudo-yellows virus, Cucumber mosaic virus, Cucurbit yellows stunting disorder virus, and Melon necrotic spot virus. Virus identification using RT-PCR showed Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows Virus (CABYV) was largely distributed in melon, oriental melon and cucumber. This result was verified by aphid (Aphis gossypii) transmission of CABYV. The complete coat protein (CP) gene amplified from melon was cloned and sequenced. The CP gene nucleotide and the deduced amino acid sequence comparisons as well as phylogenetic tree analysis of CABYV CPs showed that the CABYV isolates were undivided into subgroups. Although the low incidence of CABYV in infections to cucurbit crops in this survey, CABYV may become an important treat for cucurbit crops in many different regions in Korea, suggesting that CABYV should be taken into account in disease control of cucurbit crops in Korea. PMID:26673519

  14. Genetic diversity among cucumis metuliferus populations revealed by cucumber microsatellites

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumis metuliferus E. Mey. ex Naud (African horned cucumber, AHC) is native to Africa and is a relative of cultivated cucumber (C. sativus L.) and melon (C. melo L.). AHC is being promoted as a specialty fruit crop in a number of countries. In addition, several traits in C. metuliferus such as high...

  15. The genome of melon (Cucumis melo L.). Genome amplification in the absence of recent duplication in an old widely cultivated species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We report the genome sequence of melon (Cucumis melo L.), an important horticultural crop worldwide. We assembled 375 Mb of the double haploid line DHL92, representing 83.3 % of the estimated melon genome. We predicted 27,427 protein-coding genes, which we analyzed by reconstructing 22,218 phylogene...

  16. Genome Size Variations in Diploid African Coffea Species

    PubMed Central

    NOIROT, M.; PONCET, V.; BARRE, P.; HAMON, P.; HAMON, S.; DE KOCHKO, A.

    2003-01-01

    Flow cytometry was conducted to evaluate genome size diversity among African diploid species of the Coffea genus. The study included 15 species and six new taxa from Congolese and Cameroonian forest regions which have yet to be botanically characterized. Between‐population differences were also recorded in some cases. These evaluations using an internal standard were highly correlated with previous results obtained with an external standard, but differences of up to 18 % existed for some species, involving stoichiometric errors. Consequently, genome size variation between species and within species are discussed as true genome size differences or stoichiometric errors. Environmental and phenotypic correlations with genome size are also discussed. PMID:14573524

  17. Microsatellites Cross-Species Amplification across Some African Cichlids.

    PubMed

    Bezault, Etienne; Rognon, Xavier; Gharbi, Karim; Baroiller, Jean-Francois; Chevassus, Bernard

    2012-01-01

    The transfer of the genomic resources developed in the Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, to other Tilapiines sensu lato and African cichlid would provide new possibilities to study this amazing group from genetics, ecology, evolution, aquaculture, and conservation point of view. We tested the cross-species amplification of 32 O. niloticus microsatellite markers in a panel of 15 species from 5 different African cichlid tribes: Oreochromines (Oreochromis, Sarotherodon), Boreotilapiines (Tilapia), Chromidotilapines, Hemichromines, and Haplochromines. Amplification was successfully observed for 29 markers (91%), with a frequency of polymorphic (P(95)) loci per species around 70%. The mean number of alleles per locus and species was 3.2 but varied from 3.7 within Oreochromis species to 1.6 within the nontilapia species. The high level of cross-species amplification and polymorphism of the microsatellite markers tested in this study provides powerful tools for a wide range of molecular genetic studies within tilapia species as well as for other African cichlids. PMID:22701809

  18. New species of African Plume moths (Lepidoptera, Pterophoridae).

    PubMed

    Ustjuzhanin, P; Kovtunovich, V; Ustjuzhanina, A

    2015-01-01

    This article describes four new Pterophoridae species from Africa (Zambia, Tanzania and the Republic of South African): Platyptilia junkeri Ustjuzhanin & Kovtunovich sp. nov., Pselnophorus huntii Ustjuzhanin & Kovtunovich sp. nov., Pselnophorus tanzanicus Ustjuzhanin & Kovtunovich sp. nov., Merrifieldia aurea Ustjuzhanin & Kovtunovich sp. nov. PMID:26249061

  19. Polyploidization facilitates biotechnological in vitro techniques in the genus Cucumis.

    PubMed

    Skálová, Dagmar; Ondřej, Vladan; Doležalová, Ivana; Navrátilová, Božena; Lebeda, Aleš

    2010-01-01

    Prezygotic interspecific crossability barrier in the genus Cucumis is related to the ploidy level of the species (cucumber (C. sativus), x = 7; muskmelon (C. melo) and wild Cucumis species, x = 12). Polyploidization of maternal plants helps hybridization among other Cucumis species by overcoming prezygotic genetic barriers. The main objective of this paper is to compare the results of several methods supporting interspecific crosses in cucumber without and with polyploidization (comparison between diploid (2x) and mixoploid (2x/4x) cucumber maternal plants). Mixoploid plants were obtained after in vivo and in vitro polyploidization by colchicine and oryzalin. Ploidy level was estimated by flow cytometry. Embryo rescue, in vitro pollination, and isolation of mesophyll protoplast were tested and compared. Positive effect of polyploidization was observed during all experiments presented by higher regeneration capacity of cultivated mixoploid cucumber embryos, ovules, and protoplasts. Nevertheless, the hybrid character of putative hybrid accessions obtained after cross in vivo and in vitro pollination was not confirmed. PMID:21234406

  20. Polyploidization Facilitates Biotechnological In Vitro Techniques in the Genus Cucumis

    PubMed Central

    Skálová, Dagmar; Ondřej, Vladan; Doležalová, Ivana; Navrátilová, Božena; Lebeda, Aleš

    2010-01-01

    Prezygotic interspecific crossability barrier in the genus Cucumis is related to the ploidy level of the species (cucumber (C. sativus), x = 7; muskmelon (C. melo) and wild Cucumis species, x = 12). Polyploidization of maternal plants helps hybridization among other Cucumis species by overcoming prezygotic genetic barriers. The main objective of this paper is to compare the results of several methods supporting interspecific crosses in cucumber without and with polyploidization (comparison between diploid (2x) and mixoploid (2x/4x) cucumber maternal plants). Mixoploid plants were obtained after in vivo and in vitro polyploidization by colchicine and oryzalin. Ploidy level was estimated by flow cytometry. Embryo rescue, in vitro pollination, and isolation of mesophyll protoplast were tested and compared. Positive effect of polyploidization was observed during all experiments presented by higher regeneration capacity of cultivated mixoploid cucumber embryos, ovules, and protoplasts. Nevertheless, the hybrid character of putative hybrid accessions obtained after cross in vivo and in vitro pollination was not confirmed. PMID:21234406

  1. Psallops niedzwiedzkii, a new species from Ghana with a key to African species (Heteroptera, Miridae, Psallopinae)

    PubMed Central

    Herczek, Aleksander; Popov, Yuri A.; Gorczyca, Jacek

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A new species from Ghana, Psallops niedzwiedzkii Herczek & Popov, sp. n. is described. The dorsal habitus, head and male genitalia are presented and some morphological features are discussed. A key, short descriptions and map of the distribution of the African species of the genus are also provided. PMID:27551202

  2. Psallops niedzwiedzkii, a new species from Ghana with a key to African species (Heteroptera, Miridae, Psallopinae).

    PubMed

    Herczek, Aleksander; Popov, Yuri A; Gorczyca, Jacek

    2016-01-01

    A new species from Ghana, Psallops niedzwiedzkii Herczek & Popov, sp. n. is described. The dorsal habitus, head and male genitalia are presented and some morphological features are discussed. A key, short descriptions and map of the distribution of the African species of the genus are also provided. PMID:27551202

  3. Nomenclature of African species of the genus Stenodactylus (Squamata: Gekkonidae).

    PubMed

    Metallinou, Margarita; Crochet, Pierre-André

    2013-01-01

    The statuses of proposed nomina of the North African species of the genus Stenodactylus have been revised based on the study of their original descriptions and the examination of their name-bearing types. Important nomenclatural actions proposed include the designation of a lectotype for the nomen Stenodactylus guttatus ensuring continuity of the prevailing usage of S. petrii, and the proposal of maintaining prevailing usage of Stenodactylus sthenodactylus by applying to the International Commission of Zoological Nomenclature to set aside the existing name-bearing type and replace it with a neotype corresponding with that usage. PMID:26167591

  4. Marker-assisted backcross selection in an interspecific Cucumis population broadens the genetic base of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) is a major cucurbit vegetable species whose genetic base has been drastically reduced during its domestication. The crop's narrow genetic base (3-12% DNA polymorphism) has resulted from the use of limited genetic material and intense selection during plant improvement....

  5. Reproductive biology of the andromonoecious Cucumis melo subsp. agrestis (Cucurbitaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Kouonon, Leonie C.; Jacquemart, Anne-Laure; Zoro Bi, Arsene I.; Bertin, Pierre; Baudoin, Jean-Pierre; Dje, Yao

    2009-01-01

    Background and Aims Cucumis melo subsp. agrestis (Cucurbitaceae) is cultivated in many African regions for its edible kernels used as a soup thickener. The plant, an annual, andromonoecious, trailing-vine species, is of high social, cultural and economic value for local communities. In order to improve the yield of this crop, the first step and our aim were to elucidate its breeding system. Methods Eight experimental pollination treatments were performed during three growing seasons to assess spontaneous selfing, self-compatibility and effects of pollen source (hermaphroditic vs. male flowers). Pollination success was determined by pollen tube growth and reproductive success was assessed by fruit, seed and seedling numbers and characteristics. The pollinator guild was surveyed and the pollination distance determined both by direct observations and by indirect fluorescent dye dispersal. Key Results The species is probably pollinated by several Hymenoptera, principally by Hypotrigona para. Pollinator flight distances varied from 25 to 69 cm. No evidence for apomixis or spontaneous self-pollination in the absence of insect visitors was found. The self-fertility index (SFI = 0) indicated a total dependence on pollinators for reproductive success. The effects of hand pollination on fruit set, seed number and seedling fitness differed among years. Pollen tube growth and reproductive success did not differ between self- and cross-pollinations. Accordingly, a high self-compatibility index for the fruit set (SCI = 1·00) and the seed number (SCI = 0·98) and a low inbreeding depression at all developmental stages (cumulative δ = 0·126) suggest a high selfing ability. Finally, pollen origin had no effect on fruit and seed sets. Conclusions This andromonoecious species has the potential for a mixed mating system with high dependence on insect-mediated pollination. The selfing rate through geitonogamy should be important. PMID:19671577

  6. Genetic Diversity of USDA Cucumis metuliferus E. Mey. Collection Revealed by Cucumber Genomic Microsatellite Markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumis metuliferus E. Mey. ex Naud (African horned cucumber, AHC) is indigenous to Africa and is a relative of cultivated cucumber (C. sativus L.) and melon (C. melo L.). AHC is being promoted as a specialty fruit crop in a number of countries. In addition, several traits in C. metuliferus such as ...

  7. Chromosome comparison of 17 species / sub-species of African Goliathini (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae, Cetoniinae)

    PubMed Central

    Dutrillaux, Anne-Marie; Dutrillaux, Bernard

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The mitotic karyotypes of 17 species of African Goliathini (Cetoniinae) are described using various chromosome banding techniques. All but one are composed of 20 chromosomes, mostly metacentric, forming a karyotype assumed to be close to that of the Polyphaga ancestor. The most derived karyotypes are those of Goliathus goliatus Drury, 1770, with eight pairs of acrocentrics and Chlorocana africana Drury, 1773, with only14 chromosomes. In species of the genera Cyprolais Burmeister, 1842, Megalorhina Westwood, 1847, Stephanocrates Kolbe, 1894 and Stephanorrhina Burmeister, 1842, large additions of variable heterochromatin are observed on both some particular autosomes and the X chromosome. Species of the genera Eudicella White, 1839 and Dicronorrhina Burmeister, 1842 share the same sub-metacentric X. Although each species possesses its own karyotype, it remains impossible to propose robust phylogenetic relationships on the basis of chromosome data only. PMID:27551348

  8. Quality assessment and antiplasmodial activity of West African Cochlospermum species.

    PubMed

    Lamien-Meda, Aline; Kiendrebeogo, Martin; Compaoré, Moussa; Meda, Roland N T; Bacher, Markus; Koenig, Karin; Pacher, Thomas; Fuehrer, Hans-Peter; Noedl, Harald; Willcox, Merlin; Novak, Johannes

    2015-11-01

    The present study focuses on development of phytochemical methods for quality assessment of two West-African Cochlospermum species (Cochlospermum planchonii and Cochlospermum tinctorium) traditionally used for malaria treatment in Burkina Faso. Antimalarial activity of preparations from dried rhizomes (decoction) was tested against the chloroquine-sensitive Plasmodium strain 3D7 using the histidine-rich protein II (HRP2) drug susceptibility assay and compared with extract preparations using organic solvents of different polarity. Two main apocarotenoids were isolated from rhizomes of C. planchonii and unambiguously identified as dihydrocochloxanthine and cochloxanthine by spectroscopic methods. Comparative HPLC analyses of thirty-nine (39) samples from markets and from collections in natural habitats of both species showed a high variability in the accumulation of cochloxanthines and related carotenoids which were proven to be characteristic for rhizomes of both species and generally absent in leaves. Furthermore, content of total phenolics and antioxidant activities (DPPH and FRAP) as well as haemolytic activity of various extracts was tested. The HPLC method presented here was validated and provides a good separation of both compounds including 10 minor carotenoids. Extracts from both species and pure cochloxanthine offered pronounced antioxidant activities and weak haemolytic activity while, in contrast, dihydrocochloxanthine had a strong haemolytic effect at the highest concentration analysed. However, cochloxanthine as well as dihydrocochloxanthine showed erythroprotective effects against the haemolytic activity of the reference saponin. Moderate antiplasmodial activity between 16 and 63 μg/ml were observed with all tested extracts, and lower IC50 values were obtained with pure dihydrocochloxanthine (IC50=6.9 μg/ml), cochloxanthine (IC50=6.8 μg/ml), the DCM fraction (IC50=2.4 μg/ml) and the ethyl acetate fraction (IC50=11.5μg/ml) derived from a methanolic

  9. CpDNA-based species identification and phylogeography: application to African tropical tree species.

    PubMed

    Duminil, J; Heuertz, M; Doucet, J-L; Bourland, N; Cruaud, C; Gavory, F; Doumenge, C; Navascués, M; Hardy, O J

    2010-12-01

    Despite the importance of the African tropical rainforests as a hotspot of biodiversity, their history and the processes that have structured their biodiversity are understood poorly. With respect to past demographic processes, new insights can be gained through characterizing the distribution of genetic diversity. However, few studies of this type have been conducted in Central Africa, where the identification of species in the field can be difficult. We examine here the distribution of chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) diversity in Lower Guinea in two tree species that are difficult to distinguish, Erythrophleum ivorense and Erythrophleum suaveolens (Fabaceae). By using a blind-sampling approach and comparing molecular and morphological markers, we first identified retrospectively all sampled individuals and determined the limits of the distribution of each species. We then performed a phylogeographic study using the same genetic data set. The two species displayed essentially parapatric distributions that were correlated well with the rainfall gradient, which indicated different ecological requirements. In addition, a phylogeographic structure was found for E. suaveolens and, for both species, substantially higher levels of diversity and allelic endemism were observed in the south (Gabon) than in the north (Cameroon) of the Lower Guinea region. This finding indicated different histories of population demographics for the two species, which might reflect different responses to Quaternary climate changes. We suggest that a recent period of forest perturbation, which might have been caused by humans, favoured the spread of these two species and that their poor recruitment at present results from natural succession in their forest formations. PMID:21091558

  10. Isoptericola cucumis sp. nov., isolated from the root tissue of cucumber (Cucumis sativus).

    PubMed

    Kämpfer, Peter; Glaeser, Stefanie P; Kloepper, Joseph W; Hu, Chia-Hui; McInroy, John A; Martin, Karin; Busse, Hans-Jürgen

    2016-08-01

    A Gram-stain-positive, aerobic organism, showing an irregular cell morphology, was isolated from the root tissue of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) and investigated in detail for its taxonomic position. On the basis of the 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, strain AP-38T was shown to be most closely related to Isoptericola variabilis (99.1 %) and Isoptericola nanjingensis (98.9 %). The 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity to all other species of the genus Isoptericola was ≤98.5 %. DNA-DNA relatedness to Isoptericola variablis DSM 10177T and Isoptericola nanjingensis DSM 24300T was 31(reciprocal 41 %) and 34 (reciprocal 34 %), respectively. The diagnostic diamino acid of the peptidoglycan was l-lysine. The quinone system contained predominantly menaquinones MK-9(H4) and MK-9(H2). In the polar lipid profile, major compounds were diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylinositol and two phosphatidylinositol mannosides. The polyamine pattern contained the major components spermidine and spermine and significant amounts of tyramine. In the fatty acid profile, anteiso-C15 : 0 and iso-C15 : 0 were present in major amounts. These data support the allocation of the strain to the genus Isoptericola. The results of physiological and biochemical characterization additionally provide phenotypic differentiation of strain AP-38T from I. variabilis and I. nanjingensis. AP-38T represents a novel species of the genus Isoptericola, for which we propose the name Isoptericola cucumis sp. nov., with AP-38T (= LMG 29223T=CCM 8653T) as the type strain. PMID:27045419

  11. Bayesian species delimitation in West African forest geckos (Hemidactylus fasciatus)

    PubMed Central

    Leaché, Adam D.; Fujita, Matthew K.

    2010-01-01

    Genealogical data are an important source of evidence for delimiting species, yet few statistical methods are available for calculating the probabilities associated with different species delimitations. Bayesian species delimitation uses reversible-jump Markov chain Monte Carlo (rjMCMC) in conjunction with a user-specified guide tree to estimate the posterior distribution for species delimitation models containing different numbers of species. We apply Bayesian species delimitation to investigate the speciation history of forest geckos (Hemidactylus fasciatus) from tropical West Africa using five nuclear loci (and mtDNA) for 51 specimens representing 10 populations. We find that species diversity in H. fasciatus is currently underestimated, and describe three new species to reflect the most conservative estimate for the number of species in this complex. We examine the impact of the guide tree, and the prior distributions on ancestral population sizes (θ) and root age (τ0), on the posterior probabilities for species delimitation. Mis-specification of the guide tree or the prior distribution for θ can result in strong support for models containing more species. We describe a new statistic for summarizing the posterior distribution of species delimitation models, called speciation probabilities, which summarize the posterior support for each speciation event on the starting guide tree. PMID:20519219

  12. Genome-wide Evidence Reveals that African and Eurasian Golden Jackals Are Distinct Species.

    PubMed

    Koepfli, Klaus-Peter; Pollinger, John; Godinho, Raquel; Robinson, Jacqueline; Lea, Amanda; Hendricks, Sarah; Schweizer, Rena M; Thalmann, Olaf; Silva, Pedro; Fan, Zhenxin; Yurchenko, Andrey A; Dobrynin, Pavel; Makunin, Alexey; Cahill, James A; Shapiro, Beth; Álvares, Francisco; Brito, José C; Geffen, Eli; Leonard, Jennifer A; Helgen, Kristofer M; Johnson, Warren E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Van Valkenburgh, Blaire; Wayne, Robert K

    2015-08-17

    The golden jackal of Africa (Canis aureus) has long been considered a conspecific of jackals distributed throughout Eurasia, with the nearest source populations in the Middle East. However, two recent reports found that mitochondrial haplotypes of some African golden jackals aligned more closely to gray wolves (Canis lupus), which is surprising given the absence of gray wolves in Africa and the phenotypic divergence between the two species. Moreover, these results imply the existence of a previously unrecognized phylogenetically distinct species despite a long history of taxonomic work on African canids. To test the distinct-species hypothesis and understand the evolutionary history that would account for this puzzling result, we analyzed extensive genomic data including mitochondrial genome sequences, sequences from 20 autosomal loci (17 introns and 3 exon segments), microsatellite loci, X- and Y-linked zinc-finger protein gene (ZFX and ZFY) sequences, and whole-genome nuclear sequences in African and Eurasian golden jackals and gray wolves. Our results provide consistent and robust evidence that populations of golden jackals from Africa and Eurasia represent distinct monophyletic lineages separated for more than one million years, sufficient to merit formal recognition as different species: C. anthus (African golden wolf) and C. aureus (Eurasian golden jackal). Using morphologic data, we demonstrate a striking morphologic similarity between East African and Eurasian golden jackals, suggesting parallelism, which may have misled taxonomists and likely reflects uniquely intense interspecific competition in the East African carnivore guild. Our study shows how ecology can confound taxonomy if interspecific competition constrains size diversification. PMID:26234211

  13. De novo assembly of a draft genome for Cucumis hystrix, the closest relative of cucumber

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumis hystrix (2n = 2x = 24, HH) is the only known species that is cross-compatible with cucumber and has a great potential for cucumber improvement, To facilitate introgression of C. hystrix chromatins into cucumber genetic background through development of introgression library, we sequenced two...

  14. Vector Competence of Selected African Mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) Species for Rift Valley Fever Virus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) in Egypt, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia have indicated the potential for this disease to spread from its enzootic areas in sub-Saharan Africa. Because little is known about the potential for most African mosquito species to transmit RVF virus (RVFV), we conducted stud...

  15. Draft Genome Sequences of Three Bacillus Species from South African Marine Sponges

    PubMed Central

    Matobole, Relebohile; Augustin Nsole Biteghe, Fleury; Klein, Timothy; Kirby, Bronwyn; Trindade, Marla

    2016-01-01

    The rise in antibiotic-resistant bacteria has spurred efforts to identify novel compounds with antimicrobial activity. This brief report describes the genome sequence of three Bacillus species isolates from South African marine sponges, which produce compounds with antimicrobial activity. A search for secondary metabolite clusters revealed several secondary metabolite pathways in these genomes, which may hold promise as novel antibiotics. PMID:27056214

  16. A new species of trichostrongyloid in African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) (Artiodactyla: Bovinae) from Uganda

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Africanastrongylus giganticus n. sp. is described based on large ostertagiine nematodes occurring in the abomasum of African buffalo, Syncerus caffer, from Uganda; this represents the second species recognized in the genus. Specimens of A. giganticus are characterized by large size (15-19 mm in tot...

  17. A new brachypterous scarab species, Orphnus longicornis (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Orphninae), from the East African Rift.

    PubMed

    Frolov, Andrey; Akhmetova, Lilia

    2015-01-01

    The Afrotropical Region is the center of the diversity of the scarab beetle genus Orphnus MacLeay, 1819 (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Orphninae), with 94 species occurring from Sahel in the north to Little Karoo in the south (Paulian, 1948; Petrovitz, 1971; Frolov, 2008). The East African Rift is one of the richest regions of the Afrotropics housing more than 20 species of Orphnus (Paulian, 1948; Frolov, 2013), most of which are endemic to this region. Yet the scarab beetle fauna of the East African Rift, and especially the Eastern Arc Mountains, is still inadequately studied. Examination of the material housed in the Museum of Natural History of Humboldt-Universität, Berlin, Germany (ZMHUB), revealed a series of brachypterous Orphnus beetles belonging to an undescribed species. The new species is described and illustrated below. PMID:26624632

  18. Characterization of serum phospholipase a(2) activity in three diverse species of west african crocodiles.

    PubMed

    Merchant, Mark; Juneau, Kate; Gemillion, Jared; Falconi, Rodolfo; Doucet, Aaron; Shirley, Matthew H

    2011-01-01

    Secretory phospholipase A(2), an enzyme that exhibits substantial immunological activity, was measured in the serum of three species of diverse West African crocodiles. Incubation of different volumes of crocodile serum with bacteria labeled with a fluorescent fatty acid in the sn-2 position of membrane lipids resulted in a volume-dependent liberation of fluorescent probe. Serum from the Nile crocodile (Crocodylus niloticus) exhibited slightly higher activity than that of the slender-snouted crocodile (Mecistops cataphractus) and the African dwarf crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis). Product formation was inhibited by BPB, a specific PLA(2) inhibitor, confirming that the activity was a direct result of the presence of serum PLA(2). Kinetic analysis showed that C. niloticus serum produced product more rapidly than M. cataphractus or O. tetraspis. Serum from all three species exhibited temperature-dependent PLA(2) activities but with slightly different thermal profiles. All three crocodilian species showed high levels of activity against eight different species of bacteria. PMID:22110960

  19. Transcriptome sequencing for SNP discovery across Cucumis melo

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Melon (Cucumis melo L.) is a highly diverse species that is cultivated worldwide. Recent advances in massively parallel sequencing have begun to allow the study of nucleotide diversity in this species. The Sanger method combined with medium-throughput 454 technology were used in a previous study to analyze the genetic diversity of germplasm representing 3 botanical varieties, yielding a collection of about 40,000 SNPs distributed in 14,000 unigenes. However, the usefulness of this resource is limited as the sequenced genotypes do not represent the whole diversity of the species, which is divided into two subspecies with many botanical varieties variable in plant, flowering, and fruit traits, as well as in stress response. As a first step to extensively document levels and patterns of nucleotide variability across the species, we used the high-throughput SOLiD™ system to resequence the transcriptomes of a set of 67 genotypes that had previously been selected from a core collection representing the extant variation of the entire species. Results The deep transcriptome resequencing of all of the genotypes, grouped into 8 pools (wild African agrestis, Asian agrestis and acidulus, exotic Far Eastern conomon, Indian momordica and Asian dudaim and flexuosus, commercial cantalupensis, subsp. melo Asian and European landraces, Spanish inodorus landraces, and Piel de Sapo breeding lines) yielded about 300 M reads. Short reads were mapped to the recently generated draft genome assembly of the DHL line Piel de Sapo (inodorus) x Songwhan Charmi (conomon) and to a new version of melon transcriptome. Regions with at least 6X coverage were used in SNV calling, generating a melon collection with 303,883 variants. These SNVs were dispersed across the entire C. melo genome, and distributed in 15,064 annotated genes. The number and variability of in silico SNVs differed considerably between pools. Our finding of higher genomic diversity in wild and exotic agrestis melons

  20. Next-generation sequencing, FISH mapping and synteny-based modeling reveal mechanisms of decreasing dysploidy in Cucumis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the family of Cucurbitaceae, cucumber (Cucumis sativus) is the only species with 14 chromosomes. The majority of the remaining species, including melon and the sister species of cucumber, C. hystrix, have 24 chromosomes. To understand the underlying mechanisms of chromosome reduction from n=12 to...

  1. New African species of Helina Robineau-Desvoidy (Diptera, Muscidae).

    PubMed

    Couri, Márcia; Pont, Adrian

    2016-01-01

    The study of Afrotropical Muscidae deposited in the Natural History Museum (BMNH), London, United Kingdom, revealed four new species of Helina Robineau-Desvoidy, herein described and illustrated. Helina duocolorata sp. nov. is described from Kenya, Helina longicerca sp. nov. and Helina sexnotata sp. nov. from Nigeria, and Helina mediomaculata sp. nov. from Angola. All types are deposited in the collection of the BMNH. Some corrections are made to the entries under Helina in the Catalogue of the Diptera of the Afrotropical Region (Pont 1980). PMID:27394742

  2. Molecular characterization of Babesia and Cytauxzoon species in wild South-African meerkats.

    PubMed

    Leclaire, Sarah; Menard, Sandie; Berry, Antoine

    2015-04-01

    Piroplasms, including Babesia, Cytauxzoon and Theileria species, frequently infect domestic and wild mammals. At present, there is no information on the occurrence and molecular identity of these tick-borne blood parasites in the meerkat, one of South Africa's most endearing wildlife celebrities. Meerkats live in territorial groups, which may occur on ranchland in close proximity to humans, pets and livestock. Blood collected from 46 healthy meerkats living in the South-African Kalahari desert was screened by microscopy and molecular methods, using PCR and DNA sequencing of 18S rRNA and ITS1 genes. We found that meerkats were infected by 2 species: one species related to Babesia sp. and one species related to Cytauxzoon sp. Ninety one percent of the meerkats were infected by the Cytauxzoon and/or the Babesia species. Co-infection occurred in 46% of meerkats. The pathogenicity and vectors of these two piroplasm species remains to be determined. PMID:25374302

  3. A new species of Eurytoma (Hymenoptera: Eurytomidae) attacking, Quadrastichus spp. (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) galling Erythrina spp. (Fabaceae) with a summary of African Eurytoma spp. biology and species checklist

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Eurytoma erythrinae Gates and Delvare, new species, is described and illustrated. This species was reared from field-collected galls induced on Erythrina spp. by Quadrastichus spp. (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), in Tanzania, Ghana, and South Africa. It is compared to a closely related African species. W...

  4. Uncovering cryptic species diversity of a termite community in a West African savanna.

    PubMed

    Hausberger, Barbara; Kimpel, Dorothea; van Neer, Abbo; Korb, Judith

    2011-12-01

    To uncover the termite species diversity of a natural African savanna ecosystem, we combined morphological analyses and sequencing of three gene fragments (cytochrome oxidase I, cytochrome oxidase II and 28SrDNA, total length about 2450 bp) to infer putative species from phylogenetic trees. We identified 18 putative species clusters with high support values and which we retrieved consistently. Samples from two genera (Ancistrotermes and Microcerotermes) were excluded from the mitochondrial phylogenetic analyses as they might represent nuclear mitochondrial sequences (NUMTs). In total, our data suggest a species richness of at least 20 species, all but one belonging to the Termitidae (higher termites), and among them the fungus-growing Macrotermitinae were most prevalent with at least nine putative species. Within the fungus-growers the most species-rich genus was Microtermes and its four putative species were all cryptic species. Their abundance in the samples suggests that they play an important ecological role which is completely unstudied also due to the lack of reliable identification means. Our study shows that morphological traits are unreliable means of species identification for several termite taxa. Yet reliable and consistent identification is necessary for studying the functional role of termites in ecosystem and global processes. PMID:21896335

  5. Seasonal patterns of mixed species groups in large East African mammals.

    PubMed

    Kiffner, Christian; Kioko, John; Leweri, Cecilia; Krause, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Mixed mammal species groups are common in East African savannah ecosystems. Yet, it is largely unknown if co-occurrences of large mammals result from random processes or social preferences and if interspecific associations are consistent across ecosystems and seasons. Because species may exchange important information and services, understanding patterns and drivers of heterospecific interactions is crucial for advancing animal and community ecology. We recorded 5403 single and multi-species clusters in the Serengeti-Ngorongoro and Tarangire-Manyara ecosystems during dry and wet seasons and used social network analyses to detect patterns of species associations. We found statistically significant associations between multiple species and association patterns differed spatially and seasonally. Consistently, wildebeest and zebras preferred being associated with other species, whereas carnivores, African elephants, Maasai giraffes and Kirk's dik-diks avoided being in mixed groups. During the dry season, we found that the betweenness (a measure of importance in the flow of information or disease) of species did not differ from a random expectation based on species abundance. In contrast, in the wet season, we found that these patterns were not simply explained by variations in abundances, suggesting that heterospecific associations were actively formed. These seasonal differences in observed patterns suggest that interspecific associations may be driven by resource overlap when resources are limited and by resource partitioning or anti-predator advantages when resources are abundant. We discuss potential mechanisms that could drive seasonal variation in the cost-benefit tradeoffs that underpin the formation of mixed-species groups. PMID:25470495

  6. Seasonal Patterns of Mixed Species Groups in Large East African Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Kiffner, Christian; Kioko, John; Leweri, Cecilia; Krause, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Mixed mammal species groups are common in East African savannah ecosystems. Yet, it is largely unknown if co-occurrences of large mammals result from random processes or social preferences and if interspecific associations are consistent across ecosystems and seasons. Because species may exchange important information and services, understanding patterns and drivers of heterospecific interactions is crucial for advancing animal and community ecology. We recorded 5403 single and multi-species clusters in the Serengeti-Ngorongoro and Tarangire-Manyara ecosystems during dry and wet seasons and used social network analyses to detect patterns of species associations. We found statistically significant associations between multiple species and association patterns differed spatially and seasonally. Consistently, wildebeest and zebras preferred being associated with other species, whereas carnivores, African elephants, Maasai giraffes and Kirk's dik-diks avoided being in mixed groups. During the dry season, we found that the betweenness (a measure of importance in the flow of information or disease) of species did not differ from a random expectation based on species abundance. In contrast, in the wet season, we found that these patterns were not simply explained by variations in abundances, suggesting that heterospecific associations were actively formed. These seasonal differences in observed patterns suggest that interspecific associations may be driven by resource overlap when resources are limited and by resource partitioning or anti-predator advantages when resources are abundant. We discuss potential mechanisms that could drive seasonal variation in the cost-benefit tradeoffs that underpin the formation of mixed-species groups. PMID:25470495

  7. Vector Competence in West African Aedes aegypti Is Flavivirus Species and Genotype Dependent

    PubMed Central

    Dickson, Laura B.; Sanchez-Vargas, Irma; Sylla, Massamba; Fleming, Karen; Black, William C.

    2014-01-01

    Background Vector competence of Aedes aegypti mosquitoes is a quantitative genetic trait that varies among geographic locations and among different flavivirus species and genotypes within species. The subspecies Ae. aegypti formosus, found mostly in sub-Saharan Africa, is considered to be refractory to both dengue (DENV) and yellow fever viruses (YFV) compared to the more globally distributed Ae. aegypti aegypti. Within Senegal, vector competence varies with collection site and DENV-2 viral isolate, but knowledge about the interaction of West African Ae. aegypti with different flaviviruses is lacking. The current study utilizes low passage isolates of dengue-2 (DENV-2-75505 sylvatic genotype) and yellow fever (YFV BA-55 -West African Genotype I, or YFV DAK 1279-West African Genotype II) from West Africa and field derived Ae. aegypti collected throughout Senegal to determine whether vector competence is flavivirus or virus genotype dependent. Methodology/Principal Findings Eight collections of 20–30 mosquitoes from different sites were fed a bloodmeal containing either DENV-2 or either isolate of YFV. Midgut and disseminated infection phenotypes were determined 14 days post infection. Collections varied significantly in the rate and intensity of midgut and disseminated infection among the three viruses. Conclusions/Significance Overall, vector competence was dependent upon both viral and vector strains. Importantly, contrary to previous studies, sylvatic collections of Ae. aegypti showed high levels of disseminated infection for local isolates of both DENV-2 and YFV. PMID:25275366

  8. Desertification and a shift of forest species in the West African Sahel

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gonzalez, P.

    2001-01-01

    Original field data show that forest species richness and tree density in the West African Sahel declined in the last half of the 20th century. Average forest species richness of areas of 4 km2 in Northwest Senegal fell from 64 ?? 2 species ca 1945 to 43 ?? 2 species in 1993, a decrease significant at p < 0.001. Densities of trees of height ???3 m declined from 10 ?? 0.3 trees ha-1 in 1954 to 7.8 ?? 0.3 trees ha-1 in 1989, also significant at p < 0.001. Standing wood biomass fell 2.1 t ha-1 in the period 1956-1993, releasing CO2 at a rate of 60 kgC person-1 yr-1. These changes have shifted vegetation zones toward areas of higher rainfall at an average rate of 500 to 600 m yr-1. Arid Sahel species have expanded in the north, tracking a concomitant retraction of mesic Sudan and Guinean species to the south. Multivariate analyses identify latitude and longitude, proxies for rainfall and temperature, as the most significant factors explaining tree and shrub distribution. The changes also decreased human carrying capacity to below actual population densities. The rural population of 45 people km-2 exceeded the 1993 carrying capacity, for firewood from shrubs, of 13 people km-2 (range 1 to 21 people km-2). As an adaptation strategy, ecological and socioeconomic factors favor the natural regeneration of local species over the massive plantation of exotic species. Natural regeneration is a traditional practice in which farmers select small field trees that they wish to raise to maturity, protect them, and prune them to promote rapid growth of the apical meristem. The results of this research provide evidence for desertification in the West African Sahel. These documented impacts of desertification foreshadow possible future effects of climate change.

  9. New and remarkable Asian and North African species of Colletes Latreille (Hymenoptera: Colletidae).

    PubMed

    Kuhlmann, Michael; Proshchalykin, Maxim Yu

    2015-01-01

    In addition to previous studies on Asian and North African species of Colletes Latreille, we here further report records of 25 rarely collected and little known species. Six new species are described: Colletes comaticus Kuhlmann, sp. nov. (♂, Iran), C. uzbekus Kuhlmann & Proshchalykin, sp. nov. (♀, Uzbekistan), C. kazakhus Kuhlmann & Proshchalykin, sp. nov. (♂, Kazakhstan), C. tibestensis Kuhlmann, sp. nov. (♀, Chad, Sudan), C. packeri Kuhlmann, sp. nov. (♀, ♂, Thailand, Laos) and C. jemeniticus Kuhlmann, sp. nov. (♂, Yemen). The female of C. issykkuli Kuhlmann 2003 and the male of C. kaline Kuhlmann & Proshchalykin 2013 are here described for the first time. New synonymies are established for Colletes uralensis Noskiewicz 1936 (=C. kipyatkovi Kuhlmann & Proshchalykin 2013, syn. nov.) and C. salsolae Cockerell 1934 (=C. omanus Kuhlmann 2003, syn. nov.). PMID:26624297

  10. High level of mislabeling in Spanish and Greek hake markets suggests the fraudulent introduction of African species.

    PubMed

    Garcia-Vazquez, Eva; Perez, Juliana; Martinez, Jose L; Pardiñas, Antonio F; Lopez, Belen; Karaiskou, Nikoletta; Casa, Mary F; Machado-Schiaffino, Gonzalo; Triantafyllidis, Alexander

    2011-01-26

    DNA analysis of hake products commercialized in southern European (Spanish and Greek) market chains have demonstrated more than 30% mislabeling, on the basis of species substitution. Tails and fillets were more mislabeled than other products, such as slices and whole pieces. African species were substitute species for products labeled as American and European species, and we suggest it is a case of deliberate economically profitable mislabeling because real market prices of European and American hake products are higher than those of African in Spanish market chains. The presented results suggest fraud detection that disadvantages African producers. Government-mandated genetic surveys of commercial hakes and the use of subsequent statements of fair trade on labels of seafood products could help to reduce fraud levels in a global market of increasingly conscious consumers sensitive to ethical issues. PMID:21175190

  11. Derivation of South African water quality guidelines for Roundup(®) using species sensitivity distribution.

    PubMed

    Mensah, Paul K; Palmer, Caroline G; Muller, Wilhelmine J

    2013-10-01

    Glyphosate-based herbicides are among the leading products used in South Africa to control weeds and invading alien plant species. Although these herbicides ultimately find their way into aquatic ecosystems, South Africa has no water quality guideline based on indigenous species to protect the country's aquatic biota against these biocides. In this study, South African water quality guidelines (SAWQGs) for Roundup(®) based on species sensitivity distribution (SSD) using indigenous aquatic biota were developed. Short-term and long-term toxicity tests were conducted with eight different aquatic species belonging to five different taxonomic groups. Static non-renewal experimental methods were employed for short-term lethal tests (≤4 days), and static renewal for long-term sublethal tests (≥4 days ≤21 days). LC50 values for animal exposure and EC50 values for algae were calculated using probit analysis and linear regression of transformed herbicide concentration as natural logarithm data against percentage growth inhibition, respectively. No effect concentration (NEC) was determined based on the dynamic energy budget model, using survival data. The LC50, EC50 and NEC values were used to develop species sensitivity distribution (SSD) concentrations for Roundup(®). Based on the SSD concentrations, the short-term and long-term SAWQGs for Roundup(®) were derived as 0.250 (0.106-0.589) mg/L, and 0.002 (0.000-0.021) mg/L, respectively. These WQGs may be useful in protecting South African aquatic life against transient or long-term exposure to glyphosate-based chemicals as part of integrated water resources management. PMID:23856119

  12. Culicoides species composition and environmental factors influencing African horse sickness distribution at three sites in Namibia.

    PubMed

    Liebenberg, Danica; Piketh, Stuart; Labuschagne, Karien; Venter, Gert; Greyling, Telane; Mienie, Charlotte; de Waal, Tania; van Hamburg, Huib

    2016-11-01

    African horse sickness (AHS) is one of the most lethal infectious, non-contagious, vector-borne disease of equids. The causative agent, African horse sickness virus (AHSV) is transmitted via Culicoides midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae). AHS is endemic to Namibia but detailed studies of Culicoides communities and influencing environmental parameters are limited. This study aims to determine the Culicoides species composition at three different sites and to assess environmental parameters influencing the geographical distribution of AHS in Namibia. Weekly collections of Culicoides were made during the AHS peak season from January to May for 2013 and 2014 using the Onderstepoort 220V UV-light trap. Out of 397 collections made, 124 collections (3287 Culicoides) were analysed for AHSV presence with RT-qPCR. A total of 295 collections were analysed for total Culicoides (all collected Culicoides individuals) and in 75% of these collections the Culicoides were identified to species level. C. imicola was the dominant species with proportional representation of 29.9%. C. subschultzei, C. exspectator and C. ravus each contribute more than 10% to the species composition. The lowest number of Culicoides was collected at Aus 9980, a total of 21819 at Windhoek and the highest number at Okahandja 47343. AHSV was present at all three sites during 2013 but only in Windhoek and Okahandja during 2014. Multivariate analyses of data from the two year survey indicate the environmental parameters in order of importance for the distribution of AHS in Namibia as precipitation>temperature>clay>relative humidity>NDVI. The implication of these findings is that any precipitation event increases Culicoides numbers significantly. Together with these results the high number of species found of which little is known regarding their vector competence, add to the complexity of the distribution of AHS in Namibia. PMID:27491343

  13. Identification of naturally occurring hybrids between two overexploited sciaenid species along the South African coast.

    PubMed

    Mirimin, L; Kerwath, S E; Macey, B M; Bester-van der Merwe, A E; Lamberth, S J; Bloomer, P; Roodt-Wilding, R

    2014-07-01

    Hybridisation between fish species can play a significant role in evolutionary processes and can influence management and conservation planning, however, this phenomenon has been widely understudied, especially in marine organisms. The distribution limits of two sciaenid species (silver kob, Argyrosomus inodorus, and dusky kob, A. japonicus) partly overlap along the South African coast, where both species have undergone severe depletion due to overfishing. Following the identification of a number of possible cases of species misidentification or hybridisation (21 out of 422 individuals), nuclear and mitochondrial DNA data (12microsatellite loci and 562bp of the COI gene) were analysed to investigate the genetic composition of these individuals. Results indicated a field-based species misidentification rate of approximately 2.8% and a rate of natural hybridisation of 0.7%. Interestingly, all hybrid fish resulted from first-generation (F1) hybridisation events, which occurred exclusively between silver kob females and dusky kob males. Whether hybridisation is the result of natural events (such as secondary contact following a shift in distribution range), or anthropogenic activities (size-selective pressure due to overfishing), these findings have important implications for critical recovery and future management of these species in the wild. PMID:24582737

  14. Species delimitation in the Central African herbs Haumania (Marantaceae) using georeferenced nuclear and chloroplastic DNA sequences.

    PubMed

    Ley, A C; Hardy, O J

    2010-11-01

    Species delimitation is a fundamental biological concept which is frequently discussed and altered to integrate new insights. These revealed that speciation is not a one step phenomenon but an ongoing process and morphological characters alone are not sufficient anymore to properly describe the results of this process. Here we want to assess the degree of speciation in two closely related lianescent taxa from the tropical African genus Haumania which display distinct vegetative traits despite a high similarity in reproductive traits and a partial overlap in distribution area which might facilitate gene flow. To this end, we combined phylogenetic and phylogeographic analyses using nuclear (nr) and chloroplast (cp) DNA sequences in comparison to morphological species descriptions. The nuclear dataset unambiguously supports the morphological species concept in Haumania. However, the main chloroplastic haplotypes are shared between species and, although a geographic analysis of cpDNA diversity confirms that individuals from the same taxon are more related than individuals from distinct taxa, cp-haplotypes display correlated geographic distributions between species. Hybridization is the most plausible reason for this pattern. A scenario involving speciation in geographic isolation followed by range expansion is outlined. The study highlights the gain of information on the speciation process in Haumania by adding georeferenced molecular data to the morphological characteristics. It also shows that nr and cp sequence data might provide different but complementary information, questioning the reliability of the unique use of chloroplast data for species recognition by DNA barcoding. PMID:20813193

  15. Insights into the skeletal muscle characteristics of three southern African antelope species

    PubMed Central

    Kohn, Tertius Abraham

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT Skeletal muscle fibre type, cross-sectional area (CSA), maximum enzyme capacities and fibre oxidative capacities were investigated in three southern African antelope species. Muscle samples from blesbok (Damaliscus pygargus phillipsi), mountain reedbuck (Redunca fulvorufula) and greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) were collected post mortem from the Vastus lateralis and analysed for myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoform content, citrate synthase (CS), 3-hydroxyacyl Co A dehydrogenase (3-HAD), phosphofructokinase (PFK), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and creatine kinase (CK) activities. Histochemistry and immunohistochemistry were performed to determine relative fibre oxidative capacity, fibre type and cross-sectional area (CSA). Type IIX fibres were the most abundant fibre type in all three species, ranging from 43 to 57%. Kudu had less type IIX fibres than mountain reedbuck and blesbok (P<0.05), values confirmed by their respective MHC isoform content. Blesbok had the smallest fibres, followed by mountain reedbuck and finally kudu (P<0.001). Overall, all three species had high oxidative and glycolytic capacities, but species differences were found. Kudu had the lowest CS activity, followed by blesbok and mountain reedbuck, but the highest PFK, LDH and CK activities. This study confirmed large variation in oxidative capacities within a single fibre type, as well as overlap between the fibre types with no distinct differences between the three species. The fibre type profile of each species is discussed and confirms some of their physical attributes and capabilities. PMID:25326514

  16. Laboratory evaluation of pathogenicity of entomogenous nematodes to African tick species.

    PubMed

    Kaaya, G P; Samish, M; Glazer, I

    2000-01-01

    Five strains of entomogenous nematodes, Steinernema carpocapsae strains DD, Mexican, SR, and Heterorhabditis bacteriophora strains 1S5 and HP88, were tested for their pathogenicity to various developmental stages of five African tick species namely; Rhipicephalus appendiculatus, R. evertsi, Amblyomma variegatum, A. gemma, and Boophilus decoloratus. In engorged female R. appendiculatus, all nematodes at a concentration of 1,000 infective juveniles (IJ)/dish, except S. carpocapsae Mexican strain, induced high mortalities (56-100%), whereas in engorged female R. evertsi, only S. carpocapsae DD and H. bacteriophora HP88 induced high mortalities (78% and 56%, respectively). In engorged B. decoloratus, S. carpocapsae DD, Mexican, SR and H. bacteriophora HP88 (100 IJ/dish) induced mortalities of 85%, 65%, 80%, and 100%, respectively. In all cases, except for S. carpocapsae Mexican strain, a higher concentration (5,000 IJ/dish) did not result in higher mortality than occurred with 1,000 IJ/dish. Unfed females and immature stages of ticks were found to be generally resistant to the nematodes. The feasibility of using entomogenous nematodes for biological control of African tick species are briefly discussed. PMID:11193637

  17. Animal African Trypanosomiasis: Time to Increase Focus on Clinically Relevant Parasite and Host Species.

    PubMed

    Morrison, Liam J; Vezza, Laura; Rowan, Tim; Hope, Jayne C

    2016-08-01

    Animal African trypanosomiasis (AAT), caused by Trypanosoma congolense and Trypanosoma vivax, remains one of the most important livestock diseases in sub-Saharan Africa, particularly affecting cattle. Despite this, our detailed knowledge largely stems from the human pathogen Trypanosoma brucei and mouse experimental models. In the postgenomic era, the genotypic and phenotypic differences between the AAT-relevant species of parasite or host and their model organism counterparts are increasingly apparent. Here, we outline the timeliness and advantages of increasing the research focus on both the clinically relevant parasite and host species, given that improved tools and resources for both have been developed in recent years. We propose that this shift of emphasis will improve our ability to efficiently develop tools to combat AAT. PMID:27167665

  18. Interspecific hybridization in Cucumis leads to the divergence of phenotypes in response to low light and extended photoperiods

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaqing; Hyldgaard, Benita; Rosenqvist, Eva; Ottosen, Carl-Otto; Chen, Jinfeng

    2015-01-01

    With the aim of improving shade tolerance of cucumber, Cucumis × hytivus, a newly synthesized allotetraploid, was obtained by crossing a shade tolerant wild relative, Cucumis hystrix, with a cultivated cucumber, Cucumis sativus L. ‘BejingJietou.’ The results show that the new C. × hytivus only partly is an intermediate hybrid and it has not only chlorophyll deficiency, which recovers during leaf development, but also lower carotenoid content. Three light conditions with the combination of different light intensities and photoperiods were employed to investigate the photosynthetic response of these three Cucumis species to low light and long photoperiod. The consistent order of Pmax and DWS being lowest in C. hystrix, medium in C. × hytivus and highest in ‘BejingJietou’ suggests the three species to have genetically different photosynthetic efficiency, which relates well with the natural habitats of the parent species and the hybrid as intermediate. C. × hytivus appears to be inhibited by the low light levels to the same extent as the cultivated ‘BeijingJietou,’ which indicates neither improvement of shade tolerance nor hypothetical heterosis effect in C. × hytivus. However, unexpectedly, the PSII of C. hystrix was affected by the long photoperiod in the long term, suggested by the decrease of Fv/Fm. This sensitivity toward day length has not been passed on to C. × hytivus. PMID:26483817

  19. The species flocks of East African cichlid fishes: recent advances in molecular phylogenetics and population genetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salzburger, Walter; Meyer, Axel

    With more than 3,000 species, the fish family Cichlidae is one of the most species-rich families of vertebrates. Cichlids occur in southern and central America, Africa, Madagascar, and India. The hotspot of their biodiversity is East Africa, where they form adaptive radiations composed of hundreds of endemic species in several lakes of various sizes and ages. The unparalleled species richness of East African cichlids has been something of a conundrum for evolutionary biologists and ecologists, since it has been in doubt whether these hundreds of species arose by allopatric speciation or whether it is necessary to invoke somewhat less traditional models of speciation, such as micro-allopatric, peripatric, or even sympatric speciation or evolution through sexual selection mediated by female choice. Ernst Mayr's analyses of these evolutionary uniquely diverse species assemblages have contributed to a more direct approach to this problem and have led to a deeper understanding of the patterns and processes that caused the formation of these huge groups of species. We review here recent molecular data on population differentiation and phylogenetics, which have helped to unravel, to some extent, the patterns and processes that led to the formation and ecological maintenance of cichlid species flocks. It is becoming apparent that sexually selected traits do play an important role in speciation in micro-allopatric or even sympatric settings. Species richness seems to be roughly correlated with the surface area, but not the age, of the lakes. We observe that the oldest lineages of a species flock of cichlids are often less species-rich and live in the open water or deepwater habitats. While the species flocks of the Lake Malawai and the Lake Victoria areas were shown to be monophyletic, the cichlid assemblage of Lake Tanganyika seems to consist of several independent species flocks. Cichlids emerge as an evolutionary model system in which many fundamental questions in

  20. Geological Substrates Shape Tree Species and Trait Distributions in African Moist Forests

    PubMed Central

    Fayolle, Adeline; Engelbrecht, Bettina; Freycon, Vincent; Mortier, Frédéric; Swaine, Michael; Réjou-Méchain, Maxime; Doucet, Jean-Louis; Fauvet, Nicolas; Cornu, Guillaume; Gourlet-Fleury, Sylvie

    2012-01-01

    Background Understanding the factors that shape the distribution of tropical tree species at large scales is a central issue in ecology, conservation and forest management. The aims of this study were to (i) assess the importance of environmental factors relative to historical factors for tree species distributions in the semi-evergreen forests of the northern Congo basin; and to (ii) identify potential mechanisms explaining distribution patterns through a trait-based approach. Methodology/Principal Findings We analyzed the distribution patterns of 31 common tree species in an area of more than 700,000 km2 spanning the borders of Cameroon, the Central African Republic, and the Republic of Congo using forest inventory data from 56,445 0.5-ha plots. Spatial variation of environmental (climate, topography and geology) and historical factors (human disturbance) were quantified from maps and satellite records. Four key functional traits (leaf phenology, shade tolerance, wood density, and maximum growth rate) were extracted from the literature. The geological substrate was of major importance for the distribution of the focal species, while climate and past human disturbances had a significant but lesser impact. Species distribution patterns were significantly related to functional traits. Species associated with sandy soils typical of sandstone and alluvium were characterized by slow growth rates, shade tolerance, evergreen leaves, and high wood density, traits allowing persistence on resource-poor soils. In contrast, fast-growing pioneer species rarely occurred on sandy soils, except for Lophira alata. Conclusions/Significance The results indicate strong environmental filtering due to differential soil resource availability across geological substrates. Additionally, long-term human disturbances in resource-rich areas may have accentuated the observed patterns of species and trait distributions. Trait differences across geological substrates imply pronounced

  1. Antibacterial activity of Phyllantus emblica, Coriandrum sativum, Culinaris medic, Lawsonia alba and Cucumis sativus.

    PubMed

    Khan, Dawood Ali; Hassan, Fouzia; Ullah, Hanif; Karim, Sabiha; Baseer, Abdul; Abid, Mobasher Ali; Ubaidi, Muhammad; Khan, Shujaat Ali; Murtaza, Ghulam

    2013-01-01

    Present study deals with the demonstration of the antibacterial activity of very common medicinal plants of Pakistani origin i.e., Phyllantus emblica, Coriandrum sativum, Culinaris medic, Lawsonia alba and Cucumis sativus. The extracts were prepared in crude form by the use of hydro-alcoholic solution and were screened for antibacterial activity against various bacterial species by disk diffusion method. Assay was performed using clinical isolates of B. cereus, S. aureus, P. aeruginosa and E. coli. Crude extract of Phyllantus emblica fruit exhibited strong activity against standard cultures of all studied bacteria. Lawsonia alba showed good activity against standard cultures of all the used microorganisms. Coriandrum sativum was effective only against Bacillus cereus, while Cucumis sativus and Culinaris medic showed poor activity against Pseudomonas aeruginosa only. Hence, Phyllantus emblica exhibited strong antibacterial activity against a wide range of bacteria it means that Phyllantus emblica extract contains some compounds which have broad spectrum of bactericidal activity. PMID:24147363

  2. The evolutionary dynamics of ancient and recent polyploidy in the African semiaquatic species of the legume genus Aeschynomene.

    PubMed

    Chaintreuil, Clémence; Gully, Djamel; Hervouet, Catherine; Tittabutr, Panlada; Randriambanona, Herizo; Brown, Spencer C; Lewis, Gwilym P; Bourge, Mickaël; Cartieaux, Fabienne; Boursot, Marc; Ramanankierana, Heriniaina; D'Hont, Angélique; Teaumroong, Neung; Giraud, Eric; Arrighi, Jean-François

    2016-08-01

    The legume genus Aeschynomene is notable in the ability of certain semiaquatic species to develop nitrogen-fixing stem nodules. These species are distributed in two clades. In the first clade, all the species are characterized by the use of a unique Nod-independent symbiotic process. In the second clade, the species use a Nod-dependent symbiotic process and some of them display a profuse stem nodulation as exemplified in the African Aeschynomene afraspera. To facilitate the molecular analysis of the symbiotic characteristics of such legumes, we took an integrated molecular and cytogenetic approach to track occurrences of polyploidy events and to analyze their impact on the evolution of the African species of Aeschynomene. Our results revealed two rounds of polyploidy: a paleopolyploid event predating the African group and two neopolyploid speciations, along with significant chromosomal variations. Hence, we found that A. afraspera (8x) has inherited the contrasted genomic properties and the stem-nodulation habit of its parental lineages (4x). This study reveals a comprehensive picture of African Aeschynomene diversification. It notably evidences a history that is distinct from the diploid Nod-independent clade, providing clues for the identification of the specific determinants of the Nod-dependent and Nod-independent symbiotic processes, and for comparative analysis of stem nodulation. PMID:27061605

  3. Concordant genetic structure in two species of woodpecker distributed across the primary West African biogeographic barriers.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, Jérôme; Bowie, Rauri C K

    2015-07-01

    The lowland forests of western and central tropical Africa are separated by several potential biogeographic barriers to dispersal for forest adapted vertebrates. The two primary barriers are (1) the Dahomey Gap, a savanna corridor that reaches the coast of southern Ghana, Togo and Benin, and separates the West African rainforest into the Upper (Ghana west to Guinea) and Lower Guinea (Nigeria to Uganda and Angola) forest blocks, and (2) the Lower Niger River, a large delta that separates Western and Eastern Nigeria. Previous studies on terrestrial vertebrates (lizards, mammals and birds) have highlighted a genetic break in the Dahomey Gap/Lower Niger River area although the relative importance of each barrier has not been assessed due to limitations in geographic sampling. We compared the phylogeographic history of two co-distributed sister-species of woodpeckers (Campethera caroli and C. nivosa) using data from three loci representing all inheritance modes. Our analyses revealed that both the Dahomey Gap and possibly the Lower Niger River acted as strong biogeographic barriers for the two woodpecker species, with the Lower Niger River being the first barrier to have formed, leading to three distinct populations of C. nivosa. Our divergence time analyses revealed that both these biogeographic barriers formed during the Pleistocene, supporting the Pleistocene refuge hypothesis, with the Dahomey Gap likely appearing about 0.5 myr BP. No genetic structure was recovered among sampled populations in either the Upper or the Lower Guinea Forest Block for both species, despite the considerable geographic area covered. PMID:25800284

  4. Analyses of volatiles produced by the African fruit fly species complex (Diptera, Tephritidae)

    PubMed Central

    Břízová, Radka; Vaníčková, Lucie; Faťarová, Mária; Ekesi, Sunday; Hoskovec, Michal; Kalinová, Blanka

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Ceratitis fasciventris, Ceratitis anonae and Ceratitis rosa are polyphagous agricultural pests originating from the African continent. The taxonomy of this group (the so-called Ceratitis FAR complex) is unclear. To clarify the taxonomic relationships, male and female-produced volatiles presumably involved in pre-mating communication were studied using comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC×GC-TOFMS) followed by multivariate analysis, and gas chromatography combined with electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD). GC×GC-TOFMS analyses revealed sex specific differences in produced volatiles. Male volatiles are complex mixtures that differ both qualitatively and quantitatively but share some common compounds. GC-EAD analyses of male volatiles revealed that the antennal sensitivities of females significantly differ in the studied species. No female volatiles elicited antennal responses in males. The results show clear species-specific differences in volatile production and provide complementary information for the distinct delimitation of the putative species by chemotaxonomic markers. PMID:26798269

  5. Standardizing Visual Control Devices for Tsetse Flies: East African Species Glossina fuscipes fuscipes and Glossina tachinoides

    PubMed Central

    Oloo, Francis; Sciarretta, Andrea; Kröber, Thomas; McMullin, Andrew; Mihok, Steve; Guerin, Patrick M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Riverine species of tsetse are responsible for most human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) transmission and are also important vectors of animal trypanosomiasis. This study concerns the development of visual control devices for two such species, Glossina fuscipes fuscipes and Glossina tachinoides, at the eastern limits of their continental range. The goal was to determine the most long-lasting, practical and cost-effective visually attractive device that induces the strongest landing responses in these species for use as insecticide-impregnated tools in vector population suppression. Methods and Findings Field trials were conducted in different seasons on G. f. fuscipes in Kenya, Ethiopia and the Sudan and on G. tachinoides in Ethiopia to measure the performance of traps and 2D targets of different sizes and colours, with and without chemical baits, at different population densities and under different environmental conditions. Adhesive film was used to enumerate flies at these remote locations to compare trapping efficiencies. The findings show that targets made from black and blue fabrics (either phthalogen or turquoise) covered with adhesive film render them equal to or more efficient than traps at capturing G. f. fuscipes and G. tachinoides. Biconical trap efficiency varied between 25% and 33% for the two species. Smaller 0.25 m×0.25 m phthalogen blue-black targets proved more efficient than the regular 1 m2 target for both species, by over six times for Glossina f. fuscipes and two times for G. tachinoides based on catches per m2. Overall, targets with a higher edge/surface area ratio were more efficient at capturing flies. Conclusions/Significance Taking into account practical considerations and fly preferences for edges and colours, we propose a 0.5×0.75 m blue-black target as a simple cost-effective device for management of G. f. fuscipes and G. tachinoides, impregnated with insecticide for control and covered with adhesive film for population

  6. Microsatellite cross-species amplification and utility in southern African elasmobranchs: A valuable resource for fisheries management and conservation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Similarly to the rest of the world, southern Africa’s diverse chondrichthyan fauna is currently experiencing high fishing pressures from direct and non-direct fisheries to satisfy market demands for shark products such as fins and meat. In this study, the development of microsatellite markers through cross-species amplification of primer sets previously developed for closely related species is reported as an alternative approach to de novo marker development. This included the design of four microsatellite multiplex assays and their cross-species utility in genetic diversity analysis of southern African elasmobranchs. As this study forms part of a larger project on the development of genetic resources for commercially important and endemic southern African species, Mustelus mustelus was used as a candidate species for testing these multiplex assays in down-stream applications. Results Thirty five microsatellite primer sets previously developed for five elasmobranch species were selected from literature for testing cross-species amplification in 16 elasmobranch species occurring in southern Africa. Cross-species amplification success rates ranged from 28.6%-71.4%. From the successfully amplified microsatellites, 22 loci were selected and evaluated for levels of polymorphism, and four multiplex assays comprising of the 22 microsatellites were successfully constructed, optimised and characterised in a panel of 87 Mustelus mustelus individuals. A total of 125 alleles were observed across all loci, with the number of alleles ranging from 3–12 alleles. Cross-species amplification of the four optimised multiplex assays was further tested on 11 commercially important and endemic southern African elasmobranch species. Percentage of polymorphism ranged from 31.8%-95.5% in these species with polymorphic information content decreasing exponentially with evolutionary distance from the source species. Conclusions Cross-species amplification of the 35

  7. Affinities between Asian non-human Schistosoma species, the S. indicum group, and the African human schistosomes.

    PubMed

    Agatsuma, T; Iwagami, M; Liu, C X; Rajapakse, R P V J; Mondal, M M H; Kitikoon, V; Ambu, S; Agatsuma, Y; Blair, D; Higuchi, T

    2002-03-01

    Schistosoma species have traditionally been arranged in groups based on egg morphology, geographical origins, and the genus or family of snail intermediate host. One of these groups is the 'S. indicum group' comprising species from Asia that use pulmonate snails as intermediate hosts. DNA sequences were obtained from the four members of this group (S. indicum, S. spindale, S. nasale and S. incognitum) to provide information concerning their phylogenetic relationships with other Asian and African species and species groups. The sequences came from the second internal transcribed spacer (ITS2) of the ribosomal gene repeat, part of the 28S ribosomal RNA gene (28S), and part of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (CO1) gene. Tree analyses using both distance and parsimony methods showed the S. indicum group not to be monophyletic. Schistosoma indicum, S. spindale and S. nasale were clustered among African schistosomes, while S. incognitum was placed as sister to the African species (using ITS2 and 28S nucleotide sequences and CO1 amino acid sequences), or as sister to all other species of Schistosoma (CO1 nucleotide sequences). Based on the present molecular data, a scenario for the evolution of the S. indicum group is discussed. PMID:12018199

  8. Biogeographical and phylogenetic origins of African fig species (Ficus section Galoglychia).

    PubMed

    Rønsted, Nina; Salvo, Gabriele; Savolainen, Vincent

    2007-04-01

    Ficus section Galoglychia (subgenus Urostigma; Moraceae) includes 72 species restricted to the African floristic region (a few extending to the Arabian Peninsula and Socotra). We present the first molecular phylogenetic analysis of the section including 56 ingroup (representing 44 species) and three outgroup taxa, to investigate its monophyly, classification and evolution. We used sequence data from the nuclear ribosomal internal and external transcribed spacers (ITS and ETS). Our results suggest that section Galoglychia is paraphyletic to the neotropical section Americana, although this is not supported by bootstrap analysis and only weakly supported by Bayesian posterior probabilities. Maximum parsimony analysis conflict with maximum likelihood and Bayesian analyses with respect to the closest relatives of section Americana in Africa. The subsections of section Galoglychia proposed by Berg [Berg, C.C., 1986. Subdivision of Ficus subg. Urostigma sect. Galoglychia (Moraceae). Proc. Kon. Ned. Akad. Wetensch., Ser. C, 89, 121-127] are generally supported. We find two major clades of section Galoglychia within Africa possibly corresponding to two main centres of diversity. One clade comprises members of subsections Platyphyllae and Chlamydodorae, which are more concentrated in Eastern Africa, and extend to Madagascar and neighbouring archipelagos (Comores, Mascarenes, Aldabra Islands and Seychelles). The other main clade includes members of subsections Caulocarpae, Cyathistipulae, Crassicostae and Galoglychia, which are concentrated in West and Central Africa. PMID:17275348

  9. Assessment of the repellent effect of citronella and lemon eucalyptus oil against South African Culicoides species.

    PubMed

    Venter, Gert J; Labuschagne, Karien; Boikanyo, Solomon N B; Morey, Liesl

    2014-01-01

    The use of insect repellents to reduce the attack rate of Culicoides species (Diptera:Ceratopogonidae) should form part of an integrated control programme to combat African horse sickness and other diseases transmitted by these blood-feeding midges. In the present study the repellent effects of a commercially available mosquito repellent, a combination of citronella and lemon eucalyptus oils, on Culicoides midges was determined. The number of midges collected with two 220 V Onderstepoort traps fitted with 8 W 23 cm white light tubes and baited with peel-stick patches, each containing 40 mg of active ingredient, was compared with that of two unbaited traps. Two trials were conducted and in each trial the four traps were rotated in two replicates of a 4 x 4 randomised Latin square design. Although more midges were collected in the baited traps, the mean number in the baited and unbaited traps was not significantly different. This mosquito repellent did not influence either the species composition or the physiological groups of Culicoides imicola Kieffer. The higher mean numbers in the baited traps, although not statistically significant, may indicate that this mosquito repellent might even attract Culicoides midges under certain conditions. PMID:25686204

  10. Mathematical modelling of cucumber (cucumis sativus) drying

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shahari, N.; Hussein, S. M.; Nursabrina, M.; Hibberd, S.

    2014-07-01

    This paper investigates the applicability of using an experiment based mathematical model (empirical model) and a single phase mathematical model with shrinkage to describe the drying curve of cucumis sativus (cucumber). Drying experiments were conducted using conventional air drying and data obtained from these experiments were fitted to seven empirical models using non-linear least square regression based on the Levenberg Marquardt algorithm. The empirical models were compared according to their root mean square error (RMSE), sum of square error (SSE) and coefficient of determination (R2). A logarithmic model was found to be the best empirical model to describe the drying curve of cucumber. The numerical result of a single phase mathematical model with shrinkage was also compared with experiment data for cucumber drying. A good agreement was obtained between the model predictions and the experimental data.

  11. Back to Tanganyika: a case of recent trans-species-flock dispersal in East African haplochromine cichlid fishes.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Britta S; Indermaur, Adrian; Ehrensperger, Xenia; Egger, Bernd; Banyankimbona, Gaspard; Snoeks, Jos; Salzburger, Walter

    2015-03-01

    The species flocks of cichlid fishes in the East African Great Lakes are the largest vertebrate adaptive radiations in the world and illustrious textbook examples of convergent evolution between independent species assemblages. Although recent studies suggest some degrees of genetic exchange between riverine taxa and the lake faunas, not a single cichlid species is known from Lakes Tanganyika, Malawi and Victoria that is derived from the radiation associated with another of these lakes. Here, we report the discovery of a haplochromine cichlid species in Lake Tanganyika, which belongs genetically to the species flock of haplochromines of the Lake Victoria region. The new species colonized Lake Tanganyika only recently, suggesting that faunal exchange across watersheds and, hence, between isolated ichthyofaunas, is more common than previously thought. PMID:26064619

  12. Back to Tanganyika: a case of recent trans-species-flock dispersal in East African haplochromine cichlid fishes

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Britta S.; Indermaur, Adrian; Ehrensperger, Xenia; Egger, Bernd; Banyankimbona, Gaspard; Snoeks, Jos; Salzburger, Walter

    2015-01-01

    The species flocks of cichlid fishes in the East African Great Lakes are the largest vertebrate adaptive radiations in the world and illustrious textbook examples of convergent evolution between independent species assemblages. Although recent studies suggest some degrees of genetic exchange between riverine taxa and the lake faunas, not a single cichlid species is known from Lakes Tanganyika, Malawi and Victoria that is derived from the radiation associated with another of these lakes. Here, we report the discovery of a haplochromine cichlid species in Lake Tanganyika, which belongs genetically to the species flock of haplochromines of the Lake Victoria region. The new species colonized Lake Tanganyika only recently, suggesting that faunal exchange across watersheds and, hence, between isolated ichthyofaunas, is more common than previously thought. PMID:26064619

  13. Tree Density and Species Decline in the African Sahel Attributable to Climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gonzalez, Patrick; Tucker, Compton J.; Sy, H.

    2012-01-01

    Increased aridity and human population have reduced tree cover in parts of the African Sahel and degraded resources for local people. Yet, tree cover trends and the relative importance of climate and population remain unresolved. From field measurements, aerial photos, and Ikonos satellite images, we detected significant 1954-2002 tree density declines in the western Sahel of 18 +/- 14% (P = 0.014, n = 204) and 17 +/- 13% (P = 0.0009, n = 187). From field observations, we detected a significant 1960-2000 species richness decline of 21 +/- 11% (P = 0.0028, n = 14) across the Sahel and a southward shift of the Sahel, Sudan, and Guinea zones. Multivariate analyses of climate, soil, and population showed that temperature most significantly (P < 0.001) explained tree cover changes. Multivariate and bivariate tests and field observations indicated the dominance of temperature and precipitation, supporting attribution of tree cover changes to climate variability. Climate change forcing of Sahel climate variability, particularly the significant (P < 0.05) 1901-2002 temperature increases and precipitation decreases in the research areas, connects Sahel tree cover changes to global climate change. This suggests roles for global action and local adaptation to address ecological change in the Sahel.

  14. Taxonomy of Atlantic Central African orchids 5. A new species of Angraecum sect. Conchoglossum (Orchidaceae, Angraecinae) from Gabon and Cameroon

    PubMed Central

    Ječmenica, Vladimir; Droissart, Vincent; Noret, Nausicaa; Stévart, Tariq

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Recent field inventories and taxonomic research in Central Africa have resulted in the discovery of many new orchid species. Five specimens of an apparently new Angraecum species were collected in Gabon and Cameroon. They stand out for their hanging habit and short zig-zag stem. Morphology of leaves and habit is somewhat comparable to Angraecum cultriforme and Angraecum stolzii, two species from East Africa. Flowers of the novelty share the general morphology of Angraecum pyriforme from which the new species is distinguished by being smaller and with a different lip-spur ratio. Here we show that these five specimens represent a new species, described here as Angraecum lanceolatum. The distinguishing traits include thin lanceolate leaves, convolute distally, with a rhombic lip shape. Dichotomous key to four Central African species of sect. Conchoglossum and a table of the diagnostic characters of the seven related Continental African Angraecum taxa are included here. A preliminary assessment of the conservation status of Angraecum lanceolatum is provided, using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. PMID:27081350

  15. Taxonomy of Atlantic Central African orchids 5. A new species of Angraecum sect. Conchoglossum (Orchidaceae, Angraecinae) from Gabon and Cameroon.

    PubMed

    Ječmenica, Vladimir; Droissart, Vincent; Noret, Nausicaa; Stévart, Tariq

    2016-01-01

    Recent field inventories and taxonomic research in Central Africa have resulted in the discovery of many new orchid species. Five specimens of an apparently new Angraecum species were collected in Gabon and Cameroon. They stand out for their hanging habit and short zig-zag stem. Morphology of leaves and habit is somewhat comparable to Angraecum cultriforme and Angraecum stolzii, two species from East Africa. Flowers of the novelty share the general morphology of Angraecum pyriforme from which the new species is distinguished by being smaller and with a different lip-spur ratio. Here we show that these five specimens represent a new species, described here as Angraecum lanceolatum. The distinguishing traits include thin lanceolate leaves, convolute distally, with a rhombic lip shape. Dichotomous key to four Central African species of sect. Conchoglossum and a table of the diagnostic characters of the seven related Continental African Angraecum taxa are included here. A preliminary assessment of the conservation status of Angraecum lanceolatum is provided, using the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. PMID:27081350

  16. Ecomorphology of the African felid ensemble: the role of the skull and postcranium in determining species segregation and assembling history.

    PubMed

    Morales, M M; Giannini, N P

    2013-05-01

    Morphology of extant felids is regarded as highly conservative. Most previous studies have focussed on skull morphology, so a vacuum exists about morphofunctional variation in postcranium and its role in structuring ensembles of felids in different continents. The African felid ensemble is particularly rich in ecologically specialized felids. We studied the ecomorphology of this ensemble using 31 cranial and 93 postcranial morphometric variables measured in 49 specimens of all 10 African species. We took a multivariate approach controlling for phylogeny, with and without body size correction. Postcranial and skull + postcranial analyses (but not skull-only analyses) allowed for a complete segregation of species in morphospace. Morphofunctional factors segregating species included body size, bite force, zeugopodial lengths and osteological features related to parasagittal leg movement. A general gradient of bodily proportions was recovered: lightly built, long-legged felids with small heads and weak bite forces vs. the opposite. Three loose groups were recognized: small terrestrial felids, mid-to-large sized scansorial felids and specialized Acinonyx jubatus and Leptailurus serval. As predicted from a previous study, the assembling of the African felid ensemble during the Plio-Pleistocene occurred by the arrival of distinct felid lineages that occupied then vacant areas of morphospace, later diversifying in the continent. PMID:23496381

  17. A novel synthetic odorant blend for trapping of malaria and other African mosquito species.

    PubMed

    Mukabana, Wolfgang R; Mweresa, Collins K; Otieno, Bruno; Omusula, Philemon; Smallegange, Renate C; van Loon, Joop J A; Takken, Willem

    2012-03-01

    Estimating the biting fraction of mosquitoes is of critical importance for risk assessment of malaria transmission. Here, we present a novel odor-based tool that has been rigorously assessed in semi-field assays and traditional African villages for estimating the number of mosquitoes that enter houses in search of a blood meal. A standard synthetic blend (SB) consisting of ammonia, (S)-lactic acid, tetradecanoic acid, and carbon dioxide was complemented with isovaleric acid, 4,5 dimethylthiazole, 2-methyl-1-butanol, and 3-methyl-1-butanol in various combinations and concentrations, and tested for attractiveness to the malaria mosquito Anopheles gambiae. Compounds were released through low density polyethylene (LDPE) material or from nylon strips (nylon). Studies were done in a semi-field facility and two traditional villages in western Kenya. The alcohol 3-methyl-1-butanol significantly increased the attraction of SB. The other compounds proved less effective or inhibitory. Tested in a village, 3-methyl-1-butanol, released from LDPE, increased the attraction of SB. Further studies showed a significantly enhanced attraction of adding 3-methyl-1-butanol to SB compared to previously-published attractive blends both under semi-field and village conditions. Other mosquito species with relevance for public health were collected with this blend in significantly higher numbers as well. These results demonstrate the advent of a novel, reliable odor-based sampling tool for the collection of malaria and other mosquitoes. The advantage of this odor-based tool over existing mosquito sampling tools is its reproducibility, objectiveness, and relatively low cost compared to current standards of CDC light traps or the human landing catch. PMID:22426893

  18. Paralyzing Action from a Distance in an Arboreal African Ant Species

    PubMed Central

    Rifflet, Aline; Tene, Nathan; Orivel, Jerome; Treilhou, Michel; Dejean, Alain; Vetillard, Angelique

    2011-01-01

    Due to their prowess in interspecific competition and ability to catch a wide range of arthropod prey (mostly termites with which they are engaged in an evolutionary arms race), ants are recognized as a good model for studying the chemicals involved in defensive and predatory behaviors. Ants' wide diversity of nesting habits and relationships with plants and prey types implies that these chemicals are also very diverse. Using the African myrmicine ant Crematogaster striatula as our focal species, we adopted a three-pronged research approach. We studied the aggressive and predatory behaviors of the ant workers, conducted bioassays on the effect of their Dufour gland contents on termites, and analyzed these contents. (1) The workers defend themselves or eliminate termites by orienting their abdominal tip toward the opponent, stinger protruded. The chemicals emitted, apparently volatile, trigger the recruitment of nestmates situated in the vicinity and act without the stinger having to come into direct contact with the opponent. Whereas alien ants competing with C. striatula for sugary food sources are repelled by this behavior and retreat further and further away, termites defend their nest whatever the danger. They face down C. striatula workers and end up by rolling onto their backs, their legs batting the air. (2) The bioassays showed that the toxicity of the Dufour gland contents acts in a time-dependent manner, leading to the irreversible paralysis, and, ultimately, death of the termites. (3) Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analyses showed that the Dufour gland contains a mixture of mono- or polyunsaturated long-chain derivatives, bearing functional groups like oxo-alcohols or oxo-acetates. Electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry showed the presence of a molecule of 1584 Da that might be a large, acetylated alkaloid capable of splitting into smaller molecules that could be responsible for the final degree of venom toxicity. PMID:22194854

  19. Paralyzing action from a distance in an arboreal African ant species.

    PubMed

    Rifflet, Aline; Tene, Nathan; Orivel, Jerome; Treilhou, Michel; Dejean, Alain; Vetillard, Angelique

    2011-01-01

    Due to their prowess in interspecific competition and ability to catch a wide range of arthropod prey (mostly termites with which they are engaged in an evolutionary arms race), ants are recognized as a good model for studying the chemicals involved in defensive and predatory behaviors. Ants' wide diversity of nesting habits and relationships with plants and prey types implies that these chemicals are also very diverse. Using the African myrmicine ant Crematogaster striatula as our focal species, we adopted a three-pronged research approach. We studied the aggressive and predatory behaviors of the ant workers, conducted bioassays on the effect of their Dufour gland contents on termites, and analyzed these contents. (1) The workers defend themselves or eliminate termites by orienting their abdominal tip toward the opponent, stinger protruded. The chemicals emitted, apparently volatile, trigger the recruitment of nestmates situated in the vicinity and act without the stinger having to come into direct contact with the opponent. Whereas alien ants competing with C. striatula for sugary food sources are repelled by this behavior and retreat further and further away, termites defend their nest whatever the danger. They face down C. striatula workers and end up by rolling onto their backs, their legs batting the air. (2) The bioassays showed that the toxicity of the Dufour gland contents acts in a time-dependent manner, leading to the irreversible paralysis, and, ultimately, death of the termites. (3) Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analyses showed that the Dufour gland contains a mixture of mono- or polyunsaturated long-chain derivatives, bearing functional groups like oxo-alcohols or oxo-acetates. Electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry showed the presence of a molecule of 1584 Da that might be a large, acetylated alkaloid capable of splitting into smaller molecules that could be responsible for the final degree of venom toxicity. PMID:22194854

  20. Drivers of extinction risk in African mammals: the interplay of distribution state, human pressure, conservation response and species biology

    PubMed Central

    Di Marco, Moreno; Buchanan, Graeme M.; Szantoi, Zoltan; Holmgren, Milena; Grottolo Marasini, Gabriele; Gross, Dorit; Tranquilli, Sandra; Boitani, Luigi; Rondinini, Carlo

    2014-01-01

    Although conservation intervention has reversed the decline of some species, our success is outweighed by a much larger number of species moving towards extinction. Extinction risk modelling can identify correlates of risk and species not yet recognized to be threatened. Here, we use machine learning models to identify correlates of extinction risk in African terrestrial mammals using a set of variables belonging to four classes: species distribution state, human pressures, conservation response and species biology. We derived information on distribution state and human pressure from satellite-borne imagery. Variables in all four classes were identified as important predictors of extinction risk, and interactions were observed among variables in different classes (e.g. level of protection, human threats, species distribution ranges). Species biology had a key role in mediating the effect of external variables. The model was 90% accurate in classifying extinction risk status of species, but in a few cases the observed and modelled extinction risk mismatched. Species in this condition might suffer from an incorrect classification of extinction risk (hence require reassessment). An increased availability of satellite imagery combined with improved resolution and classification accuracy of the resulting maps will play a progressively greater role in conservation monitoring. PMID:24733953

  1. Pre-Clinical Assays Predict Pan-African Echis Viper Efficacy for a Species-Specific Antivenom

    PubMed Central

    Casewell, Nicholas R.; Cook, Darren A. N.; Wagstaff, Simon C.; Nasidi, Abdulsalami; Durfa, Nandul; Wüster, Wolfgang; Harrison, Robert A.

    2010-01-01

    Background Snakebite is a significant cause of death and disability in subsistent farming populations of sub-Saharan Africa. Antivenom is the most effective treatment of envenoming and is manufactured from IgG of venom-immunised horses/sheep but, because of complex fiscal reasons, there is a paucity of antivenom in sub-Saharan Africa. To address the plight of thousands of snakebite victims in savannah Nigeria, the EchiTAb Study Group organised the production, testing and delivery of antivenoms designed to treat envenoming by the most medically-important snakes in the region. The Echis saw-scaled vipers have a wide African distribution and medical importance. In an effort to maximise the clinical utility of scarce antivenom resources in Africa, we aimed to ascertain, at the pre-clinical level, to what extent the E. ocellatus-specific EchiTAbG antivenom, which was designed specifically for Nigeria, neutralised the lethal activity of venom from two other African species, E. pyramidum leakeyi and E. coloratus. Methodology/Principal Findings Despite apparently quite distinctive venom protein profiles, we observed extensive cross-species similarity in the immuno-reactivity profiles of Echis species-specific antisera. Using WHO standard pre-clinical in vivo tests, we determined that the monospecific EchiTAbG antivenom was as effective at neutralising the venom-induced lethal effects of E. pyramidum leakeyi and E. coloratus as it was against E. ocellatus venom. Under the restricted conditions of this assay, the antivenom was ineffective against the lethal effects of venom from the non-African Echis species, E. carinatus sochureki. Conclusions/Significance Using WHO-recommended pre-clinical tests we have demonstrated that the new anti-E. ocellatus monospecific antivenom EchiTAbG, developed in response to the considerable snakebite-induced mortality and morbidity in Nigeria, neutralised the lethal effects of venoms from Echis species representing each taxonomic group of this

  2. Petrocephalus leo, a new species of African electric fish (Osteoglossomorpha: Mormyridae) from the Oubangui River basin (Congo basin).

    PubMed

    Lavoué, Sébastien

    2016-01-01

    A new species of the African weakly electric fish genus Petrocephalus (Osteoglossomorpha: Mormyridae: Petrocephalinae) is described from the Oubangui (Ubangi) River basin, the principal right-bank tributary of the Congo River. Petrocephalus leo sp. nov. is one of the most distinctive species of Petrocephalus as it combines (among other characteristics) the absence of electroreceptive rosettes on the head with a unique melanin pattern. Only four other species of Petrocephalus lack all electroreceptive rosettes: Petrocephalus microphthalmus, Petrocephalus haullevillii, Petrocephalus schoutedeni, and Petrocephalus zakoni. Petrocephalus leo sp. nov. can be distinguished from these four species in having a distinctive black mark at the base of the pectoral fins (versus absent in P. microphthalmus, P. haullevillii and P. schoutedeni) and no subdorsal black mark (versus present in P. zakoni). A phylogenetic analysis using mitochondrial cytochrome b gene sequences shows haplotypes of P. leo sp. nov. are distinct, but are unexpectedly nested within P. zakoni haplotypes, making this latter species paraphyletic. To investigate this conflict between morphology and mitochondrial cytochrome b, a nuclear marker, the first intron of the gene coding for the S7 ribosomal protein, was sequenced. The presence of four diagnostic indels between P. zakoni and P. leo sp. nov. sequences supports the reciprocal monophyly of these two species. This is the first reported case of conflict between morphology and mitochondrial phylogeny within the genus Petrocephalus. Finally, three species of Petrocephalus are reported for the first time from the Oubangui region bringing the total of Petrocephalus species in this region to 12. PMID:27395226

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

    PubMed

    Ley, A C; Hardy, O J

    2014-08-01

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

  4. Pathological changes in African hyperoliid frogs due to a myxosporidian infection with a new species of Hoferellus (Myxozoa).

    PubMed

    Mutschmann, F

    2004-09-01

    A proliferous, polycystic and sometimes fatal kidney disease due to an infection with myxosporidia is reported in 24 of 28 hyperoliid frogs (Afrixalus dorsalis, Hyperolius concolor, Hyperolius sp.) from Nigeria, Ghana and Tanzania. In line with pathological changes in fish, the disease is described as 'frog kidney enlargement disease' (FKED). Myxosporidian plasmodia, different developmental stages and spores occurred in the kidney, ureter, and urinary bladder and in the intestine of the frogs. The parasite belongs to the genus Hoferellus and is presented as a new species: H. anurae n. sp. Spores are similar in size and structure to other Hoferellus species in fish but differ by the presence of a more prominent suture line and shorter caudal appendages. This is the first report on a Hoferellus species in amphibians as well as the first report of the genus Hoferellus in African vertebrates. PMID:15521320

  5. Evidence of novel plant-species specific ammonia oxidizing bacterial clades in acidic South African fynbos soils.

    PubMed

    Ramond, Jean-Baptiste; Lako, Joseph D W; Stafford, William H L; Tuffin, Marla I; Cowan, Don A

    2015-08-01

    Ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) are essential in the biogeochemical cycling of nitrogen as they catalyze the rate-limiting oxidation of ammonia into nitrite. Since their first isolation in the late 19th century, chemolithoautotrophic AOBs have been identified in a wide range of natural (e.g., soils, sediments, estuarine, and freshwaters) and man created or impacted habitats (e.g., wastewater treatment plants and agricultural soils). However, little is known on the plant-species association of AOBs, particularly in the nutrient-starved fynbos terrestrial biome. In this study, we evaluated the diversity of AOBs in the plant canopy of three South African fynbos-specific plant species, namely Leucadendron xanthoconus, Leucospermum truncatulum and Leucadendron microcephalum, through the construction of amoA-gene clone libraries. Our results clearly demonstrate that plant-species specific and monophyletic AOB clades are present in fynbos canopy soils. PMID:25721729

  6. Analysis of host genetic factors influencing African trypanosome species infection in a cohort of Tanzanian Bos indicus cattle.

    PubMed

    Karimuribo, Esron D; Morrison, Liam J; Black, Alana; Turner, C Michael R; Kambarage, Dominic M; Ballingall, Keith T

    2011-06-30

    Trypanosomosis caused by infection with protozoan parasites of the genus Trypanosoma is a major health constraint to cattle production in many African countries. One hundred and seventy one Bos indicus cattle from traditional pastoral Maasai (87) and more intensively managed Boran (84) animals in Tanzania were screened by PCR for the presence of African animal trypanosomes (Trypanosoma congolense, Trypanosoma vivax and Trypanosoma brucei), using blood samples archived on FTA cards. All cattle screened for trypanosomes were also genotyped at the highly polymorphic major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class II DRB3 locus to investigate possible associations between host MHC and trypanosome infection. Overall, 23.4% of the 171 cattle tested positive for at least one of the three trypanosome species. The prevalence of individual trypanosome species was 8.8% (T. congolense), 4.7% (T. vivax) and 15.8% (T. brucei). The high prevalence of T. brucei compared with T. congolense and T. vivax was unexpected as this species has previously been considered to be of lesser importance in terms of African bovine trypanosomosis. Significantly higher numbers of Maasai cattle were infected with T. brucei (23.0%, p=0.009) and T. congolense (13.8%, p=0.019) compared with Boran cattle (8.3% and 3.6%, respectively). Analysis of BoLA-DRB3 diversity in this cohort identified extensive allelic diversity. Thirty-three BoLA-DRB3 PCR-RFLP defined alleles were identified. One allele (DRB3*15) was significantly associated with an increased risk (odds ratio, OR=2.71, p=0.034) of T. brucei infection and three alleles (DRB3*35, *16 and *23) were associated with increased risk of T. congolense infection. While further work is required to dissect the role of these alleles in susceptibility to T. brucei and T. congolense infections, this study demonstrates the utility of FTA archived blood samples in combined molecular analyses of both host and pathogen. PMID:21377802

  7. Draft Genome Sequences of Three Bacillus Species from South African Marine Sponges.

    PubMed

    van Zyl, Leonardo Joaquim; Matobole, Relebohile; Augustin Nsole Biteghe, Fleury; Klein, Timothy; Kirby, Bronwyn; Trindade, Marla

    2016-01-01

    The rise in antibiotic-resistant bacteria has spurred efforts to identify novel compounds with antimicrobial activity. This brief report describes the genome sequence of threeBacillusspecies isolates from South African marine sponges, which produce compounds with antimicrobial activity. A search for secondary metabolite clusters revealed several secondary metabolite pathways in these genomes, which may hold promise as novel antibiotics. PMID:27056214

  8. Medieval herbal iconography and lexicography of Cucumis (cucumber and melon, Cucurbitaceae) in the Occident, 1300–1458

    PubMed Central

    Paris, Harry S.; Janick, Jules; Daunay, Marie-Christine

    2011-01-01

    Background The genus Cucumis contains two species of important vegetable crops, C. sativus, cucumber, and C. melo, melon. Melon has iconographical and textual records from lands of the Mediterranean Basin dating back to antiquity, but cucumber does not. The goal of this study was to obtain an improved understanding of the history of these crops in the Occident. Medieval images purportedly of Cucumis were examined, their specific identity was determined and they were compared for originality, accuracy and the lexicography of their captions. Findings The manuscripts having accurate, informative images are derived from Italy and France and were produced between 1300 and 1458. All have an illustration of cucumber but not all contain an image of melon. The cucumber fruits are green, unevenly cylindrical with an approx. 2:1 length-to-width ratio. Most of the images show the cucumbers marked by sparsely distributed, large dark dots, but images from northern France show them as having densely distributed, small black dots. The different size, colour and distribution reflect the different surface wartiness and spininess of modern American and French pickling cucumbers. The melon fruits are green, oval to serpentine, closely resembling the chate and snake vegetable melons, but not sweet melons. In nearly all manuscripts of Italian provenance, the cucumber image is labelled with the Latin caption citruli, or similar, plural diminuitive of citrus (citron, Citrus medica). However, in manuscripts of French provenance, the cucumber image is labelled cucumeres, which is derived from the classical Latin epithet cucumis for snake melon. The absence of melon in some manuscripts and the expropriation of the Latin cucumis/cucumer indicate replacement of vegetable melons by cucumbers during the medieval period in Europe. One image, from British Library ms. Sloane 4016, has a caption that allows tracing of the word ‘gherkin’ back to languages of the geographical nativity of C

  9. The Genome of the Cucumber, Cucumis Sativus L

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumber is an economically important crop as well as a model system for sex determination studies and plant vascular biology. Here we report the draft genome sequence of Cucumis sativus var. sativus L., assembled using a novel combination of traditional Sanger and next-generation Illumina GA sequen...

  10. Resistance in Cucumis melo germplasm to Pseudoperonospora cubensis pathotypes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Cucumis melo-Pseudoperonospora cubensis host-pathogen interaction is characterized by large variation in specificity. This report summarizes results obtained by laboratory screening of 52 C. melo accessions by 8 isolates of P. cubensis. The isolates represent 8 different pathotypes with low, m...

  11. Species delimitation and phylogenetic relationships in a genus of African weakly-electric fishes (Osteoglossiformes, Mormyridae, Campylomormyrus).

    PubMed

    Lamanna, Francesco; Kirschbaum, Frank; Ernst, Anja R R; Feulner, Philine G D; Mamonekene, Victor; Paul, Christiane; Tiedemann, Ralph

    2016-08-01

    African weakly-electric fishes (Mormyridae) are able to communicate through species-specific electric signals; this feature might have favoured the evolutionary radiation observed in this family (over 200 species) by acting as an effective pre-zygotic isolation mechanism. In the present study we used mitochondrial (cytb) and nuclear (rps7, scn4aa) markers in order to reconstruct a species-phylogeny and identify species boundaries for the genus Campylomormyrus, by applying inference methods based on the multispecies coalescent model. Additionally, we employed 16 microsatellite markers, landmark-based morphometric measurements, and electro-physiological analyses as independent lines of evidence to the results obtained from the sequence data. The results show that groups that are morphologically different are also significantly divergent at the genetic level, whereas morphologically similar groups, displaying dissimilar electric signals, do not show enough genetic diversity to be considered separate species. Furthermore, the data confirm the presence of a yet undescribed species within the genus Campylomormyrus. PMID:27143239

  12. Pharmacokinetics of Amitriptyline HCl and Its Metabolites in Healthy African Grey Parrots ( Psittacus erithacus ) and Cockatoos (Cacatua Species).

    PubMed

    Visser, Marike; Ragsdale, Michelle M; Boothe, Dawn M

    2015-12-01

    Amitriptyline, a tricyclic antidepressant, is used clinically to treat feather-destructive behavior in psittacine birds at a recommended dosage of 1-5 mg/kg PO q12-24h, which has been extrapolated from human medicine and based on anecdotal reports. The purpose of this pilot study was to describe the individual and population pharmacokinetic parameters of amitriptyline after a single oral dose at 1.5 mg/kg, 4.5 mg/kg, and 9 mg/kg in healthy African grey parrots ( Psittacus erithacus , n = 3) and cockatoos (Cacatua species, n = 3). Three birds received an initial 1.5 mg/kg oral dose, and blood samples were collected for 24 hours at fixed time intervals. Serum concentrations of amitriptyline and its metabolites were determined by polarized immunofluorescence. After determining the initial parameters and a 14-day washout period, 2 African grey parrots and 1 cockatoo received a single oral dose at 4.5 mg/kg, and 3 cockatoos and 1 African grey parrot received a single oral dose at 9 mg/kg. Concentrations reached the minimum therapeutic range reported in people (60 ng/mL) in 4 of 10 birds (4.5 and 9.0 mg/kg). Concentrations were within the toxic range in 1 African grey parrot (9 mg/kg), with regurgitation, ataxia, and dullness noted. Serum concentrations were nondetectable in 3 birds (1.5 and 4.5 mg/kg) and detectable but below the human therapeutic range in 3 birds (1.5 mg/kg and 9 mg/kg). Drug concentrations were continuing to increase at the end of the study (24 hours) in 1 bird. Elimination half-life varied from 1.6 to 91.2 hours. Population pharmacokinetics indicated significantly varied absorption, and elimination constants varied between species. Although amitriptyline appeared to be tolerated in most birds, disposition varies markedly among and within species, between the 2 genera, and within individual birds. The current recommended dosage of 1-5 mg/kg q12h in psittacine birds appears insufficient to achieve serum concentrations within the human therapeutic range

  13. Three novel species of Stemphylium from Sinkiang, China: their morphological and molecular characterization

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Three new species of Stemphylium were isolated from diseased leaves of Luffa cylindrica, Lycium chinense and Cucumis melo growing in the Sinkiang province of Northwest China. Stemphylium luffae, S. lycii and S. cucumis are described by morphological and molecular phylogenetic analyses. The principal...

  14. Wild Termitomyces Species Collected from Ondo and Ekiti States Are More Related to African Species as Revealed by ITS Region of rDNA

    PubMed Central

    Oyetayo, Victor Olusegun

    2012-01-01

    Molecular identification of eighteen Termitomyces species collected from two states, Ondo and Ekiti in Nigeria was carried out using the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region. The amplicons obtained from rDNA of Termitomyces species were compared with existing sequences in the NCBI GenBank. The results of the ITS sequence analysis discriminated between all the Termitomyces species (obtained from Ondo and Ekiti States) and Termitomyces sp. sequences obtained from NCBI GenBank. The degree of similarity of T1 to T18 to gene of Termitomyces sp. obtained from NCBI ranges between 82 and 99 percent. Termitomyces species from Garbon with ascension number AF321374 was the closest relative of T1 to T18 except T12 that has T. eurhizus and T. striatus as the closet relative. Phylogenetic tree generated with ITS sequences obtained from NCBI GenBank data revealed that T1 to T18 are more related to Termitomyces species indigenous to African countries such as Senegal, Congo, and Gabon. PMID:22649309

  15. Large Spatial Scale of the Phenotype-Environment Color Matching in Two Cryptic Species of African Desert Jerboas (Dipodidae: Jaculus)

    PubMed Central

    Boratyński, Zbyszek; Brito, José Carlos; Campos, João Carlos; Karala, Maija; Mappes, Tapio

    2014-01-01

    We tested the camouflage hypothesis, or the linkage between animal (Saharan rodent) and habitat coloration, on the largest geographical scale yet conducted. We aimed to determine whether phenotypic variation is explained by micro-habitat variation and/or genetic polymorphism to determine 1) the strength of linkage between fur color and local substrate color, and 2) the divergence in fur coloration between two genetic clades, representing cryptic species, throughout the complete range of the African desert jerboas (Jaculus jaculus). We used a combination of museum and field-collected specimens, remote sensing tools, satellite and digital photography and molecular genetic and phylogenetic methods to investigate the above hypotheses. Along with showing that the two divergent genetic clades of jerboas occur sympatrically throughout their African distribution, we showed significant covariation between dorsal fur coloration of the animals and the color of their habitat. We also described significant phenotypic divergence in fur color, consistent with genetic divergence between the sympatric clades. The linkage between environment and phenotype supports the idea that the selection promoting cryptic coloration is persistent in contemporary populations of jerboas, however the phenotypic divergence indicates that it has different strengths (or optima) in the two clades. The mosaic distribution of micro-habitats occupied by geographically sympatric clades suggests that it may influence both ecological and evolutionary dynamics between these two cryptic species. PMID:24714509

  16. Hierarchical multi-species modeling of carnivore responses to hunting, habitat and prey in a West African protected area.

    PubMed

    Burton, A Cole; Sam, Moses K; Balangtaa, Cletus; Brashares, Justin S

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of global efforts to shield wildlife from anthropogenic impacts, yet their effectiveness at protecting wide-ranging species prone to human conflict--notably mammalian carnivores--is increasingly in question. An understanding of carnivore responses to human-induced and natural changes in and around PAs is critical not only to the conservation of threatened carnivore populations, but also to the effective protection of ecosystems in which they play key functional roles. However, an important challenge to assessing carnivore communities is the often infrequent and imperfect nature of survey detections. We applied a novel hierarchical multi-species occupancy model that accounted for detectability and spatial autocorrelation to data from 224 camera trap stations (sampled between October 2006 and January 2009) in order to test hypotheses about extrinsic influences on carnivore community dynamics in a West African protected area (Mole National Park, Ghana). We developed spatially explicit indices of illegal hunting activity, law enforcement patrol effort, prey biomass, and habitat productivity across the park, and used a Bayesian model selection framework to identify predictors of site occurrence for individual species and the entire carnivore community. Contrary to our expectation, hunting pressure and edge proximity did not have consistent, negative effects on occurrence across the nine carnivore species detected. Occurrence patterns for most species were positively associated with small prey biomass, and several species had either positive or negative associations with riverine forest (but not with other habitat descriptors). Influences of sampling design on carnivore detectability were also identified and addressed within our modeling framework (e.g., road and observer effects), and the multi-species approach facilitated inference on even the rarest carnivore species in the park. Our study provides insight for the conservation

  17. Hierarchical Multi-Species Modeling of Carnivore Responses to Hunting, Habitat and Prey in a West African Protected Area

    PubMed Central

    Burton, A. Cole; Sam, Moses K.; Balangtaa, Cletus; Brashares, Justin S.

    2012-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) are a cornerstone of global efforts to shield wildlife from anthropogenic impacts, yet their effectiveness at protecting wide-ranging species prone to human conflict – notably mammalian carnivores – is increasingly in question. An understanding of carnivore responses to human-induced and natural changes in and around PAs is critical not only to the conservation of threatened carnivore populations, but also to the effective protection of ecosystems in which they play key functional roles. However, an important challenge to assessing carnivore communities is the often infrequent and imperfect nature of survey detections. We applied a novel hierarchical multi-species occupancy model that accounted for detectability and spatial autocorrelation to data from 224 camera trap stations (sampled between October 2006 and January 2009) in order to test hypotheses about extrinsic influences on carnivore community dynamics in a West African protected area (Mole National Park, Ghana). We developed spatially explicit indices of illegal hunting activity, law enforcement patrol effort, prey biomass, and habitat productivity across the park, and used a Bayesian model selection framework to identify predictors of site occurrence for individual species and the entire carnivore community. Contrary to our expectation, hunting pressure and edge proximity did not have consistent, negative effects on occurrence across the nine carnivore species detected. Occurrence patterns for most species were positively associated with small prey biomass, and several species had either positive or negative associations with riverine forest (but not with other habitat descriptors). Influences of sampling design on carnivore detectability were also identified and addressed within our modeling framework (e.g., road and observer effects), and the multi-species approach facilitated inference on even the rarest carnivore species in the park. Our study provides insight for the

  18. Laboratory Investigations of African Pouched Rats (Cricetomys gambianus) as a Potential Reservoir Host Species for Monkeypox Virus.

    PubMed

    Hutson, Christina L; Nakazawa, Yoshinori J; Self, Joshua; Olson, Victoria A; Regnery, Russell L; Braden, Zachary; Weiss, Sonja; Malekani, Jean; Jackson, Eddie; Tate, Mallory; Karem, Kevin L; Rocke, Tonie E; Osorio, Jorge E; Damon, Inger K; Carroll, Darin S

    2015-01-01

    Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease endemic to central and western Africa, where it is a major public health concern. Although Monkeypox virus (MPXV) and monkeypox disease in humans have been well characterized, little is known about its natural history, or its maintenance in animal populations of sylvatic reservoir(s). In 2003, several species of rodents imported from Ghana were involved in a monkeypox outbreak in the United States with individuals of three African rodent genera (Cricetomys, Graphiurus, Funisciurus) shown to be infected with MPXV. Here, we examine the course of MPXV infection in Cricetomys gambianus (pouched Gambian rats) and this rodent species' competence as a host for the virus. We obtained ten Gambian rats from an introduced colony in Grassy Key, Florida and infected eight of these via scarification with a challenge dose of 4X104 plaque forming units (pfu) from either of the two primary clades of MPXV: Congo Basin (C-MPXV: n = 4) or West African (W-MPXV: n = 4); an additional 2 animals served as PBS controls. Viral shedding and the effect of infection on activity and physiological aspects of the animals were measured. MPXV challenged animals had significantly higher core body temperatures, reduced activity and increased weight loss than PBS controls. Viable virus was found in samples taken from animals in both experimental groups (C-MPXV and W-MPXV) between 3 and 27 days post infection (p.i.) (up to 1X108 pfu/ml), with viral DNA found until day 56 p.i. The results from this work show that Cricetomys gambianus (and by inference, probably the closely related species, Cricetomys emini) can be infected with MPXV and shed viable virus particles; thus suggesting that these animals may be involved in the maintenance of MPXV in wildlife mammalian populations. More research is needed to elucidate the epidemiology of MPXV and the role of Gambian rats and other species. PMID:26517724

  19. [Ontogenetic Mechanisms of Explosive Morphological Divergence in the Lake Tana (Ethiopia) Species Flock of Large African Barbs (Labeobarbus; Cyprinidae; Teleostei)].

    PubMed

    Shkila, F N; Lazebny, O E; Kapitanova, D V; Abdissa, Belay; Borisov, V B; Smirnov, S V

    2015-01-01

    Species flock of Lake Tana (Ethiopia) large African barbs (Labeobarbus; Cyprinidae; Teleostei) was studied as a model system for investigating ontogenetic mechanisms of the explosive morphological divergence often accompanying sympatric speciation in bony fishes. Comparative morphological analysis carried out with the use ofgeometric morphometric techniques revealed quantitative differences in the head shapes of species under study. Comparative analysis of skull development revealed significant interspecies differences in the temporal characteristics of craniogenesis in these species. These two lines of evidence suggest that heterochronies in craniogenesis underlie divergence in the head shapes of adult Tana barbs. This prediction was verified via experimental changes of temporal characteristics of craniogenesis in L. intermedius, a putative ancestor for the Lake Tana species flock. For this aim, timing and rate of skull development were changed by artificial manipulation of thyroid hormone levels. In sum, it was shown that it is heterochronies that underlie an explosive morphological divergence of the Lake Tana barbs species flock. Our findings together with those reported in the literature suggest variability in the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis to contribute to these heterochronies. PMID:26606829

  20. A new species of the rare African wool carder bee genus Anthidioma (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A new species of the genus Anthidioma Pasteels (Megachilidae: Anthidiini) is described and figured from a female collected in the Obib Dunes in Namibia. Anthidioma obibense, new species, is differentieated from the only other species of the genus, A. chalicodomoides, on the basis of its integumenta...

  1. Laboratory Investigations of African Pouched Rats (Cricetomys gambianus) as a Potential Reservoir Host Species for Monkeypox Virus

    PubMed Central

    Hutson, Christina L.; Nakazawa, Yoshinori J.; Self, Joshua; Olson, Victoria A.; Regnery, Russell L.; Braden, Zachary; Weiss, Sonja; Malekani, Jean; Jackson, Eddie; Tate, Mallory; Karem, Kevin L.; Rocke, Tonie E.; Osorio, Jorge E.; Damon, Inger K.; Carroll, Darin S.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease endemic to central and western Africa, where it is a major public health concern. Although Monkeypox virus (MPXV) and monkeypox disease in humans have been well characterized, little is known about its natural history, or its maintenance in animal populations of sylvatic reservoir(s). In 2003, several species of rodents imported from Ghana were involved in a monkeypox outbreak in the United States with individuals of three African rodent genera (Cricetomys, Graphiurus, Funisciurus) shown to be infected with MPXV. Here, we examine the course of MPXV infection in Cricetomys gambianus (pouched Gambian rats) and this rodent species’ competence as a host for the virus. We obtained ten Gambian rats from an introduced colony in Grassy Key, Florida and infected eight of these via scarification with a challenge dose of 4X104 plaque forming units (pfu) from either of the two primary clades of MPXV: Congo Basin (C-MPXV: n = 4) or West African (W-MPXV: n = 4); an additional 2 animals served as PBS controls. Viral shedding and the effect of infection on activity and physiological aspects of the animals were measured. MPXV challenged animals had significantly higher core body temperatures, reduced activity and increased weight loss than PBS controls. Viable virus was found in samples taken from animals in both experimental groups (C-MPXV and W-MPXV) between 3 and 27 days post infection (p.i.) (up to 1X108 pfu/ml), with viral DNA found until day 56 p.i. The results from this work show that Cricetomys gambianus (and by inference, probably the closely related species, Cricetomys emini) can be infected with MPXV and shed viable virus particles; thus suggesting that these animals may be involved in the maintenance of MPXV in wildlife mammalian populations. More research is needed to elucidate the epidemiology of MPXV and the role of Gambian rats and other species. PMID:26517724

  2. The African buffalo: a villain for inter-species spread of infectious diseases in southern Africa.

    PubMed

    Michel, Anita L; Bengis, Roy G

    2012-01-01

    The African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) is a large wild bovid which until recently ranged across all but the driest parts of sub-Saharan Africa, and their local range being limited to about 20 km from surface water. They are of high ecological value due to their important role as bulk feeders in the grazing hierarchy. They also have high economic value, because they are one of the sought after 'Big Five' in the eco-tourism industry. In Africa, buffaloes have been recognised for some time as an important role player in the maintenance and transmission of a variety of economically important livestock diseases at the wildlife and/or livestock interface. These include African strains of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD), Corridor disease (theileriosis), bovine tuberculosis and bovine brucellosis. For a number of other diseases of veterinary importance, African buffaloes may also serve as amplifier or incidental host, whereby infection with the causative pathogens may cause severe clinical signs such as death or abortion as in the case of anthrax and Rift Valley fever, or remain mild or subclinical for example heartwater. The long term health implications of most of those infections on the buffalo at a population level is usually limited, and they do not pose a threat on the population's survival. Because of their ability to harbour and transmit important diseases to livestock, their sustainable future in ecotourism, trade and transfrontier conservation projects become complex and costly and reliable diagnostic tools are required to monitor these infections in buffalo populations. PMID:23327373

  3. Solar drying and organoleptic characteristics of two tropical African fish species using improved low-cost solar driers.

    PubMed

    Mustapha, Moshood K; Ajibola, Taiye B; Salako, Abdulbashir F; Ademola, Sunmola K

    2014-05-01

    This study was done to evaluate the drying performance, efficiency, and effectiveness of five different types of improved low-cost solar driers in terms of moisture loss from two tropical African fish species Clarias gariepinus (African sharp tooth catfish) and Oreochromis niloticus (Nile tilapia) and testing the organoleptic characteristics of the dried samples. The driers used were made from plastic, aluminum, glass, glass with black igneous stone, and mosquito net, with traditional direct open-sun drying as a control. A significant (P < 0.05) decrease in weight resulting from moisture loss in the two fish species was observed in all the driers, with the highest reduction occurring in the glass drier containing black stone. The rate of weight loss was faster in the first 4 days of drying with black stone-inserted glass drier showing the fastest drying rate with a constant weight in C. gariepinus attained on the 11th day and in O. niloticus on the eighth day. The slowest drier was plastic where a constant weight of the species were recorded on and 13th day and 11th day, respectively. Volunteers were used to assess the organoleptic characteristics of the dried samples and they showed lowest acceptability for the open-sun drying, while samples from the glass drier containing black stone had the highest acceptability in terms of the taste, flavor, appearance, texture, odor, palatability, and shelf-life. The low-cost solar driers were effective found in removing water from the fish resulting in significant loss of weight and moisture. The highest drying time, efficient performance, drying effectiveness, and high acceptability of the organoleptic parameters of the dried products from the black stone-inserted glass drier were due to the ability of the glass and the black stone to retain, transmit, and radiate heat to the fish sample all the time (day and night). These low-cost driers are simple to construct, materials for its construction readily available, easy to

  4. The Influence of Interspecific Competition and Host Preference on the Phylogeography of Two African Ixodid Tick Species

    PubMed Central

    Cangi, Nídia; Horak, Ivan G.; Apanaskevich, Dmitry A.; Matthee, Sonja; das Neves, Luís C. B. G.; Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Matthee, Conrad A.

    2013-01-01

    A comparative phylogeographic study on two economically important African tick species, Amblyomma hebraeum and Hyalomma rufipes was performed to test the influence of host specificity and host movement on dispersion. Pairwise AMOVA analyses of 277 mtDNA COI sequences supported significant population differentiation among the majority of sampling sites. The geographic mitochondrial structure was not supported by nuclear ITS-2 sequencing, probably attributed to a recent divergence. The three-host generalist, A. hebraeum, showed less mtDNA geographic structure, and a lower level of genetic diversity, while the more host-specific H. rufipes displayed higher levels of population differentiation and two distinct mtDNA assemblages (one predominantly confined to South Africa/Namibia and the other to Mozambique and East Africa). A zone of overlap is present in southern Mozambique. A mechanistic climate model suggests that climate alone cannot be responsible for the disruption in female gene flow. Our findings furthermore suggest that female gene dispersal of ticks is more dependent on the presence of juvenile hosts in the environment than on the ability of adult hosts to disperse across the landscape. Documented interspecific competition between the juvenile stages of H. rufipes and H. truncatum is implicated as a contributing factor towards disrupting gene flow between the two southern African H. rufipes genetic assemblages. PMID:24130813

  5. Two decades of historical phenology observations of African tropical tree species: exploring the past to predict the futur

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hufkens, K.; Kosmala, M.; Ewango, C.; Richardson, A. D.; Beeckman, H.

    2015-12-01

    African tropical forests cover ~630 million ha, store up to 66 Pg of carbon and represent a significant carbon sink (0.34Pg C yr-1 ). As such African tropical forests provide an important negative feedback to the global carbon cycle. Unlike temperate forests, tropical forests lack sharp temperature and photoperiod cues to constrain phenology and growth. Therefore, events such as seasonal leaf abscission and reproductive life cycles are often driven by changes in water availability. With future climate predictions expecting a warmer, and especially drier tropical Africa, it is likely we will see concomitant changes in tree growth and phenology.As tropical trees show a high degree of phenological plasticity depending on the severity of the dry season, intermittent water stress or the location of an individual in the canopy structure. As such, frequent and long term observations are key to characterize tropical tree phenology. Here I use two long term historical phenology records of weekly observations, some digitized within the context of a citizen science project (http://junglerhythms.org/), to explore differences in tree phenology between two sites (Luki and Yangambi, DR Congo) with contrasting climate regimes within the Congo basin. I describe variation in leaf, flower and fruit phenology across similar species at both locations in relation to complementary historical climatological observations. I further discuss the potential implications of changing phenology under future climate conditions as phenological changes could alter both ecosystem demography and growing season length providing important feedbacks to the climate system.

  6. Rigorous approaches to species delimitation have significant implications for African crocodilian systematics and conservation

    PubMed Central

    Shirley, Matthew H.; Vliet, Kent A.; Carr, Amanda N.; Austin, James D.

    2014-01-01

    Accurate species delimitation is a central assumption of biology that, in groups such as the Crocodylia, is often hindered by highly conserved morphology and frequent introgression. In Africa, crocodilian systematics has been hampered by complex regional biogeography and confounded taxonomic history. We used rigorous molecular and morphological species delimitation methods to test the hypothesis that the slender-snouted crocodile (Mecistops cataphractus) is composed of multiple species corresponding to the Congolian and Guinean biogeographic zones. Speciation probability was assessed by using 11 mitochondrial and nuclear genes, and cranial morphology for over 100 specimens, representing the full geographical extent of the species distribution. Molecular Bayesian and phylogenetic species delimitation showed unanimous support for two Mecistops species isolated to the Upper Guinean and Congo (including Lower Guinean) biomes that were supported by 13 cranial characters capable of unambiguously diagnosing each species. Fossil-calibrated phylogenetic reconstruction estimated that the species split ± 6.5–7.5 Ma, which is congruent with intraspecies divergence within the sympatric crocodile genus Osteolaemus and the formation of the Cameroon Volcanic Line. Our results underscore the necessity of comprehensive phylogeographic analyses within currently recognized taxa to detect cryptic species within the Crocodylia. We recommend that the community of crocodilian researchers reconsider the conceptualization of crocodilian species especially in the light of the conservation ramifications for this economically and ecologically important group. PMID:24335982

  7. A revision of African helmeted terrapins (Testudines: Pelomedusidae: Pelomedusa), with descriptions of six new species.

    PubMed

    Petzold, Alice; Vargas-Ramírez, Mario; Kehlmaier, Christian; Vamberger, Melita; Branch, William R; Preez, Louis Du; Hofmeyr, Margaretha D; Meyer, Leon; Schleicher, Alfred; Siroký, Pavel; Fritz, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    Using nearly range-wide sampling, we analyze up to 1848 bp of mitochondrial DNA of 183             helmeted terrapins and identify a minimum of 12 deeply divergent species-level clades. Uncorrected p distances of these clades equal or clearly exceed those between the currently recognized species of Pelusios, the genus most closely related to Pelomedusa. We correlate genetic discontinuities of Pelomedusa with data on morphology and endoparasites and describe six new Pelomedusa species. Moreover, we restrict the name Pelomedusa subrufa (Bonnaterre, 1789) to one genetic lineage and resurrect three further species from its synonymy, namely P. galeata (Schoepff, 1792), P. gehafie (Rüppell, 1835), and P. olivacea (Schweigger, 1812). In addition to these ten Pelomedusa species, we identify two further clades from Cameroon and Sudan with similar levels of genetic divergence that remain unnamed candidate species. We also note that some problematical terrapins from South Africa and Somalia may represent two additional candidate species. Some of the Pelomedusa species are morphologically distinctive, whilst others can only be identified by molecular markers and are therefore morphologically cryptic taxa. PMID:24870496

  8. Cucumis sativus secretes 4'-ketoriboflavin under iron-deficient conditions.

    PubMed

    Satoh, Junichi; Koshino, Hiroyuki; Sekino, Kouta; Ito, Shinsaku; Katsuta, Ryo; Takeda, Kouji; Yoshimura, Etsuro; Shinmachi, Fumie; Kawasaki, Shinji; Niimura, Youichi; Nukada, Tomoo

    2016-01-01

    A new compound in cucumber, Cucumis sativus, nutrient solution that appears under iron-deficient conditions, but not under ordinary culture conditions, has been revealed by HPLC analysis. The chemical structure of this compound was identified using LC-MS and NMR techniques as that of 4'-ketoriboflavin. This is the first report to show that 4'-ketoriboflavin can be found in metabolites from organisms. PMID:26523955

  9. Impact of temperature on performance in two species of South African dwarf chameleon, Bradypodion pumilum and B. occidentale.

    PubMed

    Segall, Marion; Tolley, Krystal A; Vanhooydonck, Bieke; Measey, G John; Herrel, Anthony

    2013-10-15

    Temperature is an extrinsic factor that influences reptile behavior because of its impact on reptile physiology. Understanding the impact of temperature on performance traits is important as it may affect the ecology and fitness of ectothermic animals such as reptiles. Here, we examined the temperature dependence of performance in two species of South African dwarf chameleon (Bradypodion): one adapted to a semi-arid environment and one to a mesic environment. Ecologically relevant performance traits were tested at different temperatures to evaluate their thermal dependence, and temperature-performance breadths for 80% and 90% of each performance trait were calculated. Our results show distinct differences in the thermal dependence of speed- versus force-related performance traits. Moreover, our results show that the semi-arid species is better adapted to higher temperatures and as such has a better chance of coping with the predicted increases in environmental temperature. The mesic area-adapted species seems to be more sensitive to an increase in temperature and could therefore potentially be threatened by the predicted future climate change. However, further studies investigating the potential for acclimation in chameleons are needed to better understand how animals may respond to future climate change. PMID:23868845

  10. Assessing the potential of multi-seasonal WorldView-2 imagery for mapping West African agroforestry tree species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karlson, Martin; Ostwald, Madelene; Reese, Heather; Bazié, Hugues Roméo; Tankoano, Boalidioa

    2016-08-01

    High resolution satellite systems enable efficient and detailed mapping of tree cover, with high potential to support both natural resource monitoring and ecological research. This study investigates the capability of multi-seasonal WorldView-2 imagery to map five dominant tree species at the individual tree crown level in a parkland landscape in central Burkina Faso. The Random Forest algorithm is used for object based tree species classification and for assessing the relative importance of WorldView-2 predictors. The classification accuracies from using wet season, dry season and multi-seasonal datasets are compared to gain insights about the optimal timing for image acquisition. The multi-seasonal dataset produced the most accurate classifications, with an overall accuracy (OA) of 83.4%. For classifications based on single date imagery, the dry season (OA = 78.4%) proved to be more suitable than the wet season (OA = 68.1%). The predictors that contributed most to the classification success were based on the red edge band and visible wavelengths, in particular green and yellow. It was therefore concluded that WorldView-2, with its unique band configuration, represents a suitable data source for tree species mapping in West African parklands. These results are particularly promising when considering the recently launched WorldView-3, which provides data both at higher spatial and spectral resolution, including shortwave infrared bands.

  11. Otoliths of Five Extant Species of the Annual Killifish Nothobranchius from the East African Savannah

    PubMed Central

    Reichenbacher, Bettina; Reichard, Martin

    2014-01-01

    This study presents, for the first time, a comprehensive dataset that documents the range of inter- and intraspecific otolith variation in aplocheiloid killifish, based on a total of 86 individuals representing five extant species of Nothobranchius PETERS, 1868, from East Africa: the sympatric pairs N. rubripinnis SEEGERS, 1986 and N. ruudwildekampi COSTA, 2009 (Eastern Tanzania), and N. orthonotus (PETERS, 1844) and N. furzeri JUBB, 1971 (Southern Mozambique), and two isolated populations of N. korthausae MEINKEN, 1973 (Eastern Tanzania). Otolith characters were analysed based on SEM images, and otolith morphometry was conducted using uni- and multivariate statistics. Two ancient clades of probably Early to Middle Miocene age in eastern Tanzania and southern Mozambique can be recognized based on otolith morphologies, which is consistent with previous work based on molecular data. The distinctive sulcus morphologies in the otoliths of sympatric species may be linked to species-specific hearing capabilities, perhaps constituting a case of character displacement in an area of secondary sympatry. The otoliths of the studied species of Nothobranchius are diagnostic at the species level, even in the case of closely related species diagnosable otherwise only by minor differences in coloration. The two populations of N. korthausae also displayed some differences in their otolith characters. The new data may facilitate future recognition of fossil species of Nothobranchius. As no fossil remains of extant aplocheiloid killifishes have yet been described, the discovery of fossil otoliths of Nothobranchius would significantly advance understanding of the evolutionary history of this interesting group of fishes. PMID:25383789

  12. Libanasa kilomeni, a new species of East African Lutosinae (Orthoptera: Anostostomatidae).

    PubMed

    Hemp, Claudia; Johns, Peter M

    2015-01-01

    A new species of Libanasa, L. kilomeni, is described. In contrast to L. brachyura, an inhabitant of lowland wet to submontane forest along the Tanzanian coast and part of the Eastern Arc Mountains of Tanzania, this new species is found in montane forest in the North Pare Mountains. L. kilomeni n. sp. is restricted to a small forest reserve and due to forest clearing at lower elevations probably driven to its upper ecological border. Therefore this species is considered endangered and should be included in the IUCN red list. PMID:26624379

  13. Microsatellite primers for a species of South African everlasting daisy (Helichrysum odoratissimum; Gnaphalieae, Asteraceae)1

    PubMed Central

    Glennon, Kelsey L.; Cron, Glynis V.

    2016-01-01

    Premise of the study: Microsatellites were developed for the widespread Helichrysum odoratissimum (Asteraceae) to estimate gene flow across diploid populations and to test if gene flow occurs among other closely related lineages within this genus. Methods and Results: Ten primer pairs were developed and tested using populations across South Africa; however, only seven primer pairs were polymorphic for the target species. The seven polymorphic primers amplified di- and trinucleotide repeats with up to 16 alleles per locus among 125 diploid individuals used for analyses. Conclusions: These markers can be used to estimate gene flow among populations of known ploidy level of H. odoratissimum to test evolutionary hypotheses. Furthermore, these markers amplify successfully in other Helichrysum species, including the other three taxonomic Group 4 species, and therefore can be used to inform taxonomic work on these species. PMID:27213125

  14. Species-specific loss of sexual dimorphism in vocal effectors accompanies vocal simplification in African clawed frogs (Xenopus)

    PubMed Central

    Leininger, Elizabeth C.; Kitayama, Ken; Kelley, Darcy B.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Phylogenetic studies can reveal patterns of evolutionary change, including the gain or loss of elaborate courtship traits in males. Male African clawed frogs generally produce complex and rapid courtship vocalizations, whereas female calls are simple and slow. In a few species, however, male vocalizations are also simple and slow, suggesting loss of male-typical traits. Here, we explore features of the male vocal organ that could contribute to loss in two species with simple, slow male calls. In Xenopus boumbaensis, laryngeal morphology is more robust in males than in females. Larynges are larger, have a more complex cartilaginous morphology and contain more muscle fibers. Laryngeal muscle fibers are exclusively fast-twitch in males but are both fast- and slow-twitch in females. The laryngeal electromyogram, a measure of neuromuscular synaptic strength, shows greater potentiation in males than in females. Male-specific physiological features are shared with X. laevis, as well as with a species of the sister clade, Silurana tropicalis, and thus are likely ancestral. In X. borealis, certain aspects of laryngeal morphology and physiology are sexually monomorphic rather than dimorphic. In both sexes, laryngeal muscle fibers are of mixed-twitch type, which limits the production of muscle contractions at rapid intervals. Muscle activity potentiation and discrete tension transients resemble female rather than male X. boumbaensis. The de-masculinization of these laryngeal features suggests an alteration in sensitivity to the gonadal hormones that are known to control the sexual differentiation of the larynx in other Xenopus and Silurana species. PMID:25788725

  15. Two new species of African Haemaphysalis ticks (Acari: Ixodidae), carnivore parasites of the H. (Rhipistoma) leachi group.

    PubMed

    Apanaskevich, Dmitry A; Horak, Ivan G

    2008-06-01

    Two new tick species belonging to the African Haemaphysalis (Rhipistoma) leachi subgroup, namely H. (R.) colesbergensis n. sp. and H. (R.) oliveri n. sp., are described. Haemaphysalis (R.) colesbergensis adults are easily differentiated from the other species of the H. (R.) leachi subgroup, including H. (R.) oliveri, by the spur on coxa IV, which is considerably longer than that on coxa III. The adults of the 2 new species are equal in size, but the dental formula of the hypostome of H. (R.) colesbergensis is 4/4 compared to 5/5 for H. (R.) oliveri. The dental formula of H. (R.) oliveri also distinguishes it from other ticks in the subgroup, namely H. (R.) leachi, H. (R.) elliptica, H. (R.) moreli, and H. (R.) punctaleachi (4/4 in these species), but not from H. (R.) paraleachi, which has a 5/5 dental arrangement. However, the average total length and width of H. (R.) oliveri males (2.47 x 1.20 mm) are considerably shorter and narrower than those of H. (R.) paraleachi males (3.81 x 1.79 mm). Similar differences in size apply to the females. Nymphs and larvae of H. (R.) colesbergensis and H. (R.) oliveri can be distinguished from those of other members of the H. (R.) leachi subgroup, as well as from each other, by a combination of the following characters: size and measurement ratios, length of posterodorsal and posteroventral spurs on palpal segment II, and number of denticles per file on the hypostome. Haemaphysalis (R.) colesbergensis is known only from South Africa, where it has been collected from domestic cats and dogs and medium-sized wild felids. Haemaphysalis (R.) oliveri is recorded only from Sudan, where it has been collected from small- to medium-sized wild felids and canids and an antelope. The hosts of the immature stages of H. (R.) colesbergensis are unknown, while nymphs of H. (R.) oliveri have been collected from rodents. PMID:18605788

  16. Shifts in climate foster exceptional opportunities for species radiation: the case of South african geraniums.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Cabrera, Hugo I; Peres-Neto, Pedro R

    2013-01-01

    Climate change is often assumed to be a major driver of biodiversity loss. However, it can also set the stage for novel diversification in lineages with the evolutionary ability to colonize new environments. Here we tested if the extraordinary evolutionary success of the genus Pelargonium was related to the ability of its species to capitalize on the climate niche variation produced by the historical changes in southern Africa. We evaluated the relationship between rates of climate niche evolution and diversification rates in the main Pelargonium lineages and disentangled the roles of deep and recent historical events in the modification of species niches. Pelargonium clades exhibiting higher ecological differentiation along summer precipitation (SPP) gradients also experienced higher diversification rates. Faster rates of niche differentiation in spatially structured variables, along with lower levels of niche overlap among closely related species, suggest recent modification in species niches (e.g. dispersal or range shift) and niche lability. We suggest that highly structured SPP gradients established during the aridification process within southern Africa, in concert with niche lability and low niche overlap, contributed to species divergence. These factors are likely to be responsible for the extensive diversification of other lineages in this diversity hot spot. PMID:24358250

  17. Inheritance of Beta-Carotene-Associated Flesh Color in Cucumber (Cucumis Sativus L.) Fruit

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The nutritional value of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) can be improved by the introgression of ß-carotene (i.e., provitamin A and/or orange flesh) genes from “Xishuangbanna gourd” (XIS; Cucumis sativus var. xishuangbannanesis Qi et Yuan) into U.S. pickling cucumber. However, the genetics of ß-carote...

  18. Laboratory investigations of African Pouched Rats (Cricetomys gambianus) as a potential reservoir host species for Monkeypox Virus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hutson, Christina L.; Nakazawa, Yoshinori J.; Self, Joshua; Olson, Victoria A.; Regnery, Russell L.; Braden, Zachary; Weiss, Sonja; Malekani, Jean; Jackson, Eddie; Tate, Mallory; Karem, Kevin L.; Rocke, Tonie E.; Osorio, Jorge E.; Damon, Inger K.; Carroll, Darin S.

    2015-01-01

    Monkeypox is a zoonotic disease endemic to central and western Africa, where it is a major public health concern. Although Monkeypox virus (MPXV) and monkeypox disease in humans have been well characterized, little is known about its natural history, or its maintenance in animal populations of sylvatic reservoir(s). In 2003, several species of rodents imported from Ghana were involved in a monkeypox outbreak in the United States with individuals of three African rodent genera (Cricetomys, Graphiurus, Funisciurus) shown to be infected with MPXV. Here, we examine the course of MPXV infection in Cricetomys gambianus (pouched Gambian rats) and this rodent species’ competence as a host for the virus. We obtained ten Gambian rats from an introduced colony in Grassy Key, Florida and infected eight of these via scarification with a challenge dose of 4X104 plaque forming units (pfu) from either of the two primary clades of MPXV: Congo Basin (C-MPXV: n = 4) or West African (W-MPXV: n = 4); an additional 2 animals served as PBS controls. Viral shedding and the effect of infection on activity and physiological aspects of the animals were measured. MPXV challenged animals had significantly higher core body temperatures, reduced activity and increased weight loss than PBS controls. Viable virus was found in samples taken from animals in both experimental groups (C-MPXV and W-MPXV) between 3 and 27 days post infection (p.i.) (up to 1X108pfu/ml), with viral DNA found until day 56 p.i. The results from this work show that Cricetomys gambianus (and by inference, probably the closely related species, Cricetomys emini) can be infected with MPXV and shed viable virus particles; thus suggesting that these animals may be involved in the maintenance of MPXV in wildlife mammalian populations. More research is needed to elucidate the epidemiology of MPXV and the role of Gambian rats and other species.

  19. NASA and USGS invest in invasive species modeling to evaluate habitat for Africanized Honey Bees

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2009-01-01

    Invasive non-native species, such as plants, animals, and pathogens, have long been an interest to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and NASA. Invasive species cause harm to our economy (around $120 B/year), the environment (e.g., replacing native biodiversity, forest pathogens negatively affecting carbon storage), and human health (e.g., plague, West Nile virus). Five years ago, the USGS and NASA formed a partnership to improve ecological forecasting capabilities for the early detection and containment of the highest priority invasive species. Scientists from NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and the Fort Collins Science Center developed a longterm strategy to integrate remote sensing capabilities, high-performance computing capabilities and new spatial modeling techniques to advance the science of ecological invasions [Schnase et al., 2002].

  20. Multiple vectors and their differing ecologies: observations on two bluetongue and African horse sickness vector Culicoides species in South Africa.

    PubMed

    Meiswinkel, R; Labuschagne, K; Baylis, M; Mellor, P S

    2004-01-01

    Blacklight traps were used to collect Culicoides biting midges weekly between September 1996 and August 1998 at 40 sites distributed equidistantly across South Africa. The seasonal and geographic prevalences of 86 species of Culicoides were elucidated simultaneously, and included C. imicola Kieffer and C. bolitinos Meiswinkel the principal vectors of bluetongue (BT) and African horse sickness (AHS) in the region. These two species were amongst the most prevalent Culicoides to be found and, together, comprised >50% of the more than three million biting midges captured. The data are presented as coloured matrices, and are transformed also into inverse distance weighting (IDW) interpolative maps. The data reveal that the prevalence of each vector is somewhat fractured and it is posited that this is (in part) due to significant differences in their respective breeding habitats. The results illustrate also that the presence of multiple vectors (in any region of the world) will complicate both the epidemiology of the orbiviral diseases they transmit and the formulation of rational livestock movement and disease control strategies. This is especially true for southern Europe where the recent devastating cycle of BT has been shown to involve at least three vectors. Finally, the influence that man has on the development of large foci of vector Culicoides around livestock may be less important than previously suggested but must be investigated further. PMID:20419682

  1. Discovery and phylogenetic analysis of a riverine species flock of African electric fishes (Mormyridae: Teleostei).

    PubMed

    Sullivan, John P; Lavoué, Sébastien; Hopkins, Carl D

    2002-03-01

    The evolution of species-specific mate recognition signals is of particular interest within speciose monophyletic groups with restricted distributions (known as "species flocks"). However, the explosive nature of speciation in these clades makes difficult the reconstruction of their phylogenetic history. Here we describe a species flock of riverine mormyrid fishes from west-central Africa in which electric signals may play a role in the reproductive isolation of sympatric species. In our recent field collections, totaling more than 1400 specimens from many localities, we recognize 38 forms that are distinct in their morphologies and electric organ discharge (EOD) characteristics. Of these 38, only four clearly correspond to described species. Here we treat these forms as operational taxonomic units (OTUs) in a phylogenetic analysis of cytochrome b sequence data from a sample of 86 specimens. We examined support in the molecular data for the monophyly of these 38 OTUs considered together, the monophyly of each phenotypically delimited OTU considered individually, and for relationships among OTUs congruent with those inferred from the distribution of morphological and EOD character states. Trees obtained by both maximum-parsimony and maximum-likelihood analyses, rooted with sequence data from outgroup taxa, provide evidence for the monophyly of these 38 OTUs with respect to other mormyrid fishes. The small genetic distances between many distinct forms suggest their recent divergence. However, in many instances the cytochrome b tree topology fails to support the monophyly of individual OTUs and close relationships between OTUs that are similar in morphology and EOD characteristics. In other cases, individuals from distinct OTUs share identical or nearly identical haplotypes. Close examination of these cases suggests that unnatural OTU definition is not the sole cause of this pattern, and we infer an incongruence between the mitochondrial gene tree and the organismal

  2. Landscape-scale variation in plant community composition of an African savanna from airborne species mapping.

    PubMed

    Baldeck, C A; Colgan, M S; Féret, J B; Levick, S R; Martin, R E; Asner, G P

    2014-01-01

    Information on landscape-scale patterns in species distributions and community types is vital for ecological science and effective conservation assessment and planning. However, detailed maps of plant community structure at landscape scales seldom exist due to the inability of field-based inventories to map a sufficient number of individuals over large areas. The Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO) collected hyperspectral and lidar data over Kruger National Park, South Africa, and these data were used to remotely identify > 500 000 tree and shrub crowns over a 144-km2 landscape using stacked support vector machines. Maps of community compositional variation were produced by ordination and clustering, and the importance of hillslope-scale topo-edaphic variation in shaping community structure was evaluated with redundancy analysis. This remote species identification approach revealed spatially complex patterns in woody plant communities throughout the landscape that could not be directly observed using field-based methods alone. We estimated that topo-edaphic variables representing catenal sequences explained 21% of species compositional variation, while we also uncovered important community patterns that were unrelated to catenas, indicating a large role for other soil-related factors in shaping the savanna community. Our results demonstrate the ability of airborne species identification techniques to map biodiversity for the evaluation of ecological controls on community composition over large landscapes. PMID:24640536

  3. Climate and Species Richness Predict the Phylogenetic Structure of African Mammal Communities

    PubMed Central

    Kamilar, Jason M.; Beaudrot, Lydia; Reed, Kaye E.

    2015-01-01

    We have little knowledge of how climatic variation (and by proxy, habitat variation) influences the phylogenetic structure of tropical communities. Here, we quantified the phylogenetic structure of mammal communities in Africa to investigate how community structure varies with respect to climate and species richness variation across the continent. In addition, we investigated how phylogenetic patterns vary across carnivores, primates, and ungulates. We predicted that climate would differentially affect the structure of communities from different clades due to between-clade biological variation. We examined 203 communities using two metrics, the net relatedness (NRI) and nearest taxon (NTI) indices. We used simultaneous autoregressive models to predict community phylogenetic structure from climate variables and species richness. We found that most individual communities exhibited a phylogenetic structure consistent with a null model, but both climate and species richness significantly predicted variation in community phylogenetic metrics. Using NTI, species rich communities were composed of more distantly related taxa for all mammal communities, as well as for communities of carnivorans or ungulates. Temperature seasonality predicted the phylogenetic structure of mammal, carnivoran, and ungulate communities, and annual rainfall predicted primate community structure. Additional climate variables related to temperature and rainfall also predicted the phylogenetic structure of ungulate communities. We suggest that both past interspecific competition and habitat filtering have shaped variation in tropical mammal communities. The significant effect of climatic factors on community structure has important implications for the diversity of mammal communities given current models of future climate change. PMID:25875361

  4. The Andromonoecious Sex Determination Gene Predates the Separation of Cucumis and Citrullus Genera

    PubMed Central

    Boualem, Adnane; Lemhemdi, Afef; Sari, Marie-Agnes; Pignoly, Sarah; Troadec, Christelle; Abou Choucha, Fadi; Solmaz, Ilknur; Sari, Nebahat; Dogimont, Catherine; Bendahmane, Abdelhafid

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of sex determination in plants requires the cloning and the characterization of sex determination genes. Monoecy is characterized by the presence of both male and female flowers on the same plant. Andromonoecy is characterized by plants carrying both male and bisexual flowers. In watermelon, the transition between these two sexual forms is controlled by the identity of the alleles at the A locus. We previously showed, in two Cucumis species, melon and cucumber, that the transition from monoecy to andromonoecy results from mutations in 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid synthase (ACS) gene, ACS-7/ACS2. To test whether the ACS-7/ACS2 function is conserved in cucurbits, we cloned and characterized ClACS7 in watermelon. We demonstrated co-segregation of ClACS7, the homolog of CmACS-7/CsACS2, with the A locus. Sequence analysis of ClACS7 in watermelon accessions identified three ClACS7 isoforms, two in andromonoecious and one in monoecious lines. To determine whether the andromonoecious phenotype is due to a loss of ACS enzymatic activity, we expressed and assayed the activity of the three protein isoforms. Like in melon and cucumber, the isoforms from the andromonoecious lines showed reduced to no enzymatic activity and the isoform from the monoecious line was active. Consistent with this, the mutations leading andromonoecy were clustered in the active site of the enzyme. Based on this, we concluded that active ClACS7 enzyme leads to the development of female flowers in monoecious lines, whereas a reduction of enzymatic activity yields hermaphrodite flowers. ClACS7, like CmACS-7/CsACS2 in melon and cucumber, is highly expressed in carpel primordia of buds determined to develop carpels and not in male flowers. Based on this finding and previous investigations, we concluded that the monoecy gene, ACS7, likely predated the separation of the Cucumis and Citrullus genera. PMID:27171236

  5. The Andromonoecious Sex Determination Gene Predates the Separation of Cucumis and Citrullus Genera.

    PubMed

    Boualem, Adnane; Lemhemdi, Afef; Sari, Marie-Agnes; Pignoly, Sarah; Troadec, Christelle; Abou Choucha, Fadi; Solmaz, Ilknur; Sari, Nebahat; Dogimont, Catherine; Bendahmane, Abdelhafid

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of sex determination in plants requires the cloning and the characterization of sex determination genes. Monoecy is characterized by the presence of both male and female flowers on the same plant. Andromonoecy is characterized by plants carrying both male and bisexual flowers. In watermelon, the transition between these two sexual forms is controlled by the identity of the alleles at the A locus. We previously showed, in two Cucumis species, melon and cucumber, that the transition from monoecy to andromonoecy results from mutations in 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid synthase (ACS) gene, ACS-7/ACS2. To test whether the ACS-7/ACS2 function is conserved in cucurbits, we cloned and characterized ClACS7 in watermelon. We demonstrated co-segregation of ClACS7, the homolog of CmACS-7/CsACS2, with the A locus. Sequence analysis of ClACS7 in watermelon accessions identified three ClACS7 isoforms, two in andromonoecious and one in monoecious lines. To determine whether the andromonoecious phenotype is due to a loss of ACS enzymatic activity, we expressed and assayed the activity of the three protein isoforms. Like in melon and cucumber, the isoforms from the andromonoecious lines showed reduced to no enzymatic activity and the isoform from the monoecious line was active. Consistent with this, the mutations leading andromonoecy were clustered in the active site of the enzyme. Based on this, we concluded that active ClACS7 enzyme leads to the development of female flowers in monoecious lines, whereas a reduction of enzymatic activity yields hermaphrodite flowers. ClACS7, like CmACS-7/CsACS2 in melon and cucumber, is highly expressed in carpel primordia of buds determined to develop carpels and not in male flowers. Based on this finding and previous investigations, we concluded that the monoecy gene, ACS7, likely predated the separation of the Cucumis and Citrullus genera. PMID:27171236

  6. Culicoides species abundance and potential over-wintering of African horse sickness virus in the Onderstepoort area, Gauteng, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Venter, Gert J; Labuschagne, Karien; Majatladi, Daphney; Boikanyo, Solomon N B; Lourens, Carina; Ebersohn, Karen; Venter, Estelle H

    2014-01-01

    In South Africa, outbreaks of African horse sickness (AHS) occur in summer; no cases are reported in winter, from July to September. The AHS virus (AHSV) is transmitted almost exclusively by Culicoides midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae), of which Culicoides imicola is considered to be the most important vector. The over-wintering mechanism of AHSV is unknown. In this study, more than 500 000 Culicoides midges belonging to at least 26 species were collected in 88 light traps at weekly intervals between July 2010 and September 2011 near horses in the Onderstepoort area of South Africa. The dominant species was C. imicola. Despite relatively low temperatures and frost, at least 17 species, including C. imicola, were collected throughout winter (June-August). Although the mean number of midges per night fell from > 50 000 (March) to < 100 (July and August), no midge-free periods were found. This study, using virus isolation on cell cultures and a reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay, confirmed low infection prevalence in field midges and that the detection of virus correlated to high numbers. Although no virus was detected during this winter period, continuous adult activity indicated that transmission can potentially occur. The absence of AHSV in the midges during winter can be ascribed to the relatively low numbers collected coupled to low infection prevalence, low virus replication rates and low virus titres in the potentially infected midges. Cases of AHS in susceptible animals are likely to start as soon as Culicoides populations reach a critical level. PMID:25686125

  7. The spatial distribution of African savannah herbivores: species associations and habitat occupancy in a landscape context.

    PubMed

    Anderson, T Michael; White, Staci; Davis, Bryant; Erhardt, Rob; Palmer, Meredith; Swanson, Alexandra; Kosmala, Margaret; Packer, Craig

    2016-09-19

    Herbivores play an important role in determining the structure and function of tropical savannahs. Here, we (i) outline a framework for how interactions among large mammalian herbivores, carnivores and environmental variation influence herbivore habitat occupancy in tropical savannahs. We then (ii) use a Bayesian hierarchical model to analyse camera trap data to quantify spatial patterns of habitat occupancy for lions and eight common ungulates of varying body size across an approximately 1100 km(2) landscape in the Serengeti ecosystem. Our results reveal strong positive associations among herbivores at the scale of the entire landscape. Lions were positively associated with migratory ungulates but negatively associated with residents. Herbivore habitat occupancy differed with body size and migratory strategy: large-bodied migrants, at less risk of predation and able to tolerate lower quality food, were associated with high NDVI, while smaller residents, constrained to higher quality forage, avoided these areas. Small herbivores were strongly associated with fires, likely due to the subsequent high-quality regrowth, while larger herbivores avoided burned areas. Body mass was strongly related to herbivore habitat use, with larger species more strongly associated with riverine and woodlands than smaller species. Large-bodied migrants displayed diffuse habitat occupancy, whereas smaller species demonstrated fine-scale occupancy reflecting use of smaller patches of high-quality habitat. Our results demonstrate the emergence of strong positive spatial associations among a diverse group of savannah herbivores, while highlighting species-specific habitat selection strongly determined by herbivore body size.This article is part of the themed issue 'Tropical grassy biomes: linking ecology, human use and conservation'. PMID:27502379

  8. Distribution of lipophosphoglycan-associated epitopes in different Leishmania species and in African trypanosomes.

    PubMed

    Tolson, D L; Schnur, L F; Jardim, A; Pearson, T W

    1994-01-01

    Monoclonal antibody (mAb) CA7AE binds specifically to the phosphorylated Gal-beta 1,4-Man disaccharide repeat epitope of Leishmania donovani lipophosphoglycan (LPG). This mAb detected the repeat epitope in most but not all of a wide variety of Leishmania species and strains examined. MAb CA7AE also bound to both glycoprotein and carbohydrate antigens in medium from L. donovani promastigote cultures. Specifically, mAb CA7AE bound the delipidated form of LPG, the phosphoglycan, and a glycoprotein both of which are released into the medium by the parasite indicating that both share a specific phosphorylated carbohydrate epitope. The epitope was detected in sera from L. donovani-infected (kala-azar positive) patients when mAb CA7AE was used in an antigen-capture enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). MAb L157 is specific for a protein that is found associated with L. donovani LPG, the lipophosphoglycan-associated protein (LPGAP). This mAb bound to molecules in all 19 strains (representing 9 species) of Leishmania promastigotes and to molecules in 2 species of Trypanosoma procyclic culture forms. This wide distribution of the LPGAP epitope implies that it may have a conserved function, for example, in the biochemistry or arrangement of parasite surface molecules. In addition, since the LPGAP is involved in the stimulation of T lymphocyte proliferation, its wide distribution amongst different Leishmania species suggests that it may be an ideal molecule for testing as a vaccine for leishmaniasis. PMID:7528916

  9. Species boundaries and taxonomy of the African river frogs (Amphibia: Pyxicephalidae: Amietia).

    PubMed

    Channing, A; Dehling, J M; Lötters, S; Ernst, R

    2016-01-01

    A molecular phylogeny of the Afrotropical anuran genus Amietia based on 323 16S sequences indicates that there are 19 species, including four not yet described. No genetic material was available for the nominal A. inyangae. We consider them to represent full species, and define them based on 16S genetic distances, as well as differences in morphology, tadpoles and advertisement call where known. An analysis based on two mitochondrial and two nuclear genes (12S, 16S, 28S and tyrosinase exon 1), from 122 samples, confirmed the phylogenetic relationships suggested by the 16S tree. We recognise and (re-) describe the following species: Amietia angolensis (Bocage, 1866), A. chapini (Noble, 1924), A. delalandii (Duméril & Bibron, 1841), A. desaegeri (Laurent, 1972), A. fuscigula (Duméril & Bibron, 1841), A. hymenopus (Boulenger, 1920), A. inyangae (Poynton, 1966), A. johnstoni (Günther, 1893), A. moyerorum sp. nov., A. nutti (Boulenger, 1896), A. poyntoni Channing & Baptista, 2013, A. ruwenzorica (Laurent, 1972), A. tenuoplicata (Pickersgill, 2007), A. vandijki (Visser & Channing, 1997), A. vertebralis (Hewitt, 1927), and A. wittei (Angel, 1924). Three further candidate species of Larson et al. (2016) await formal naming. We provisionally regard A. amieti (Laurent, 1976) as a junior synonym of A. chapini (Noble, 1924). Amietia lubrica (Pickersgill, 2007) is shown to be a junior synonym of A. nutti, while A. quecketti (Boulenger, 1895) is shown to be a junior synonym of A. delalandii (Duméril & Bibron, 1841), and A. viridireticulata (Pickersgill, 2007) is placed as a junior synonym of A. tenuoplicata (Pickersgill, 2007). On the basis of similarity of 16S sequences, we assign A. sp. 1, A. sp. 3 and A. sp. 6 of Larson et al (2016) to the nomina A. chapini (Noble, 1924), A. desaegeri (Laurent, 1972), and A. nutti (Boulenger, 1896) respectively. PMID:27615865

  10. Patterns of sequence divergence and evolution of the S orthologous regions between Asian and African cultivated rice species.

    PubMed

    Guyot, Romain; Garavito, Andrea; Gavory, Frédérick; Samain, Sylvie; Tohme, Joe; Ghesquière, Alain; Lorieux, Mathias

    2011-01-01

    A strong postzygotic reproductive barrier separates the recently diverged Asian and African cultivated rice species, Oryza sativa and O. glaberrima. Recently a model of genetic incompatibilities between three adjacent loci: S(1)A, S(1) and S(1)B (called together the S(1) regions) interacting epistatically, was postulated to cause the allelic elimination of female gametes in interspecific hybrids. Two candidate factors for the S(1) locus (including a putative F-box gene) were proposed, but candidates for S(1)A and S(1)B remained undetermined. Here, to better understand the basis of the evolution of regions involved in reproductive isolation, we studied the genic and structural changes accumulated in the S(1) regions between orthologous sequences. First, we established an 813 kb genomic sequence in O. glaberrima, covering completely the S(1)A, S(1) and the majority of the S(1)B regions, and compared it with the orthologous regions of O. sativa. An overall strong structural conservation was observed, with the exception of three isolated regions of disturbed collinearity: (1) a local invasion of transposable elements around a putative F-box gene within S(1), (2) the multiple duplication and subsequent divergence of the same F-box gene within S(1)A, (3) an interspecific chromosomal inversion in S(1)B, which restricts recombination in our O. sativa×O. glaberrima crosses. Beside these few structural variations, a uniform conservative pattern of coding sequence divergence was found all along the S(1) regions. Hence, the S(1) regions have undergone no drastic variation in their recent divergence and evolution between O. sativa and O. glaberrima, suggesting that a small accumulation of genic changes, following a Bateson-Dobzhansky-Muller (BDM) model, might be involved in the establishment of the sterility barrier. In this context, genetic incompatibilities involving the duplicated F-box genes as putative candidates, and a possible strengthening step involving the

  11. Patterns of Sequence Divergence and Evolution of the S1 Orthologous Regions between Asian and African Cultivated Rice Species

    PubMed Central

    Gavory, Frédérick; Samain, Sylvie; Tohme, Joe; Ghesquière, Alain; Lorieux, Mathias

    2011-01-01

    A strong postzygotic reproductive barrier separates the recently diverged Asian and African cultivated rice species, Oryza sativa and O. glaberrima. Recently a model of genetic incompatibilities between three adjacent loci: S1A, S1 and S1B (called together the S1 regions) interacting epistatically, was postulated to cause the allelic elimination of female gametes in interspecific hybrids. Two candidate factors for the S1 locus (including a putative F-box gene) were proposed, but candidates for S1A and S1B remained undetermined. Here, to better understand the basis of the evolution of regions involved in reproductive isolation, we studied the genic and structural changes accumulated in the S1 regions between orthologous sequences. First, we established an 813 kb genomic sequence in O. glaberrima, covering completely the S1A, S1 and the majority of the S1B regions, and compared it with the orthologous regions of O. sativa. An overall strong structural conservation was observed, with the exception of three isolated regions of disturbed collinearity: (1) a local invasion of transposable elements around a putative F-box gene within S1, (2) the multiple duplication and subsequent divergence of the same F-box gene within S1A, (3) an interspecific chromosomal inversion in S1B, which restricts recombination in our O. sativa×O. glaberrima crosses. Beside these few structural variations, a uniform conservative pattern of coding sequence divergence was found all along the S1 regions. Hence, the S1 regions have undergone no drastic variation in their recent divergence and evolution between O. sativa and O. glaberrima, suggesting that a small accumulation of genic changes, following a Bateson-Dobzhansky-Muller (BDM) model, might be involved in the establishment of the sterility barrier. In this context, genetic incompatibilities involving the duplicated F-box genes as putative candidates, and a possible strengthening step involving the chromosomal inversion might participate to

  12. Using Social Media to Measure the Contribution of Red List Species to the Nature-Based Tourism Potential of African Protected Areas.

    PubMed

    Willemen, Louise; Cottam, Andrew J; Drakou, Evangelia G; Burgess, Neil D

    2015-01-01

    Cultural ecosystem services are defined by people's perception of the environment, which make them hard to quantify systematically. Methods to describe cultural benefits from ecosystems typically include resource-demanding survey techniques, which are not suitable to assess cultural ecosystem services for large areas. In this paper we explore a method to quantify cultural benefits through the enjoyment of natured-based tourism, by assessing the potential tourism attractiveness of species for each protected area in Africa using the IUCN's Red List of Threatened Species. We use the number of pictures of wildlife posted on a photo sharing website as a proxy for charisma, popularity, and ease of observation, as these factors combined are assumed to determine how attractive species are for the global wildlife tourist. Based on photo counts of 2473 African animals and plants, species that seem most attractive to nature-based tourism are the Lion, African Elephant and Leopard. Combining the photo counts with species range data, African protected areas with the highest potential to attract wildlife tourists based on attractive species occurrence were Samburu National Reserve in Kenya, Mukogodo Forest Reserve located just north of Mount Kenya, and Addo Elephant National Park in South-Africa. The proposed method requires only three data sources which are freely accessible and available online, which could make the proposed index tractable for large scale quantitative ecosystem service assessments. The index directly links species presence to the tourism potential of protected areas, making the connection between nature and human benefits explicit, but excludes other important contributing factors for tourism, such as accessibility and safety. This social media based index provides a broad understanding of those species that are popular globally; in many cases these are not the species of highest conservation concern. PMID:26068111

  13. Using Social Media to Measure the Contribution of Red List Species to the Nature-Based Tourism Potential of African Protected Areas

    PubMed Central

    Drakou, Evangelia G.; Burgess, Neil D.

    2015-01-01

    Cultural ecosystem services are defined by people’s perception of the environment, which make them hard to quantify systematically. Methods to describe cultural benefits from ecosystems typically include resource-demanding survey techniques, which are not suitable to assess cultural ecosystem services for large areas. In this paper we explore a method to quantify cultural benefits through the enjoyment of natured-based tourism, by assessing the potential tourism attractiveness of species for each protected area in Africa using the IUCN’s Red List of Threatened Species. We use the number of pictures of wildlife posted on a photo sharing website as a proxy for charisma, popularity, and ease of observation, as these factors combined are assumed to determine how attractive species are for the global wildlife tourist. Based on photo counts of 2473 African animals and plants, species that seem most attractive to nature-based tourism are the Lion, African Elephant and Leopard. Combining the photo counts with species range data, African protected areas with the highest potential to attract wildlife tourists based on attractive species occurrence were Samburu National Reserve in Kenya, Mukogodo Forest Reserve located just north of Mount Kenya, and Addo Elephant National Park in South-Africa. The proposed method requires only three data sources which are freely accessible and available online, which could make the proposed index tractable for large scale quantitative ecosystem service assessments. The index directly links species presence to the tourism potential of protected areas, making the connection between nature and human benefits explicit, but excludes other important contributing factors for tourism, such as accessibility and safety. This social media based index provides a broad understanding of those species that are popular globally; in many cases these are not the species of highest conservation concern. PMID:26068111

  14. Three African antelope species with varying water dependencies exhibit similar selective brain cooling.

    PubMed

    Strauss, W Maartin; Hetem, Robyn S; Mitchell, Duncan; Maloney, Shane K; Meyer, Leith C R; Fuller, Andrea

    2016-05-01

    The use of selective brain cooling, where warm arterial blood destined for the brain is cooled in the carotid rete via counter-current heat exchange when in close proximity to cooler venous blood, contributes to the conservation of body water. We simultaneously measured carotid blood and hypothalamic temperature in four gemsbok, five red hartebeest and six blue wildebeest to assess the extent to which these free-living animals, with varying water dependency, routinely rely on selective brain cooling. We investigated the hypothesis that innate differences in selective brain cooling exist in large, sympatric artiodactyls with varying water dependency. All three species used selective brain cooling, without any discernible differences in three selective brain cooling indices. GLMMs revealed no species differences in the threshold temperature for selective brain cooling (z = 0.79, P = 0.43), the magnitude (z = -0.51, P = 0.61), or the frequency of selective brain cooling use (z = -0.47, P = 0.64), after controlling for carotid blood temperature and black globe temperature. Comparison of anatomical attributes of the carotid retes of the three species revealed that the volume (F 2,9 = 5.54, P = 0.03) and height (F 2,9 = 5.43, P = 0.03) of the carotid rete, per kilogram body mass, were greater in the red hartebeest than in the blue wildebeest. Nevertheless, intraspecific variability in the magnitude, the frequency of use, and the threshold temperature for selective brain cooling exceeded any interspecific variability in the three indices of selective brain cooling. We conclude that the three species have similar underlying ability to make use of selective brain cooling in an environment with freely available water. It remains to be seen to what extent these three species would rely on selective brain cooling, as a water conservation mechanism, when challenged by aridity, a condition likely to become prevalent throughout much of southern Africa under

  15. Cucurbita spp. and Cucumis sativus enhance the dissipation of polychlorinated biphenyl congeners by stimulating soil microbial community development.

    PubMed

    Qin, Hua; Brookes, Philip C; Xu, Jianming

    2014-01-01

    A number of Cucurbita species have the potential to extract polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) from soil, but their impact on the soil microbial communities responsible for PCB degradation remains unclear. A greenhouse experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of three Cucurbita and one Cucumis species on PCB dissipation and soil microbial community structure. Compared to the unplanted control, enhanced losses of PCBs (19.5%-42.7%) were observed in all planted soils. Cucurbita pepo and Cucurbita moschata treatments were more efficient in PCB dissipation, and have similar patterns of soil phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) and PCB congener profiles. Cucurbita treatments tend to have higher soil microbial biomass than Cucumis. Gram-negative (G(-)) bacteria were significantly correlated with PCB degradation rates (R(2) = 0.719, p < 0.001), while fungi and G(-) bacteria were correlated with dissipation of the penta homologue group (R(2) = 0.590, p < 0.01). Therefore, Cucurbita related soil microorganisms could play an important role in remediation of PCB contaminated soils. PMID:24077568

  16. Genospecies and virulence factors of Aeromonas species in different sources in a North African country

    PubMed Central

    Ghenghesh, Khalifa Sifaw; Ahmed, Salwa F.; Cappuccinelli, Piero; Klena, John D.

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Aeromonads of medical importance have been reported from numerous clinical, food, and water sources, but identification of genospecies and virulence factors of Aeromonas species from countries in North Africa and the Middle East are few. Methods In total 99 Aeromonas species isolates from different sources (diarrheal children [n=23], non-diarrheal children [n=16], untreated drinking water from wells [n=32], and chicken carcasses [n=28]) in Tripoli, Libya, were included in the present investigation. Genus identification was confirmed by biochemical analysis, and genospecies were determined using a combination of 16S rDNA variable region and gyrB sequence analysis. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to detect genes encoding toxins from 52 of the isolates. Results We identified 44 isolates (44%) as A. hydrophila (3 [3.0%] subspecies anaerogenes, 23 [23%] subspecies dhakensis, and 18 [18%] subspecies ranae); 27 isolates (27%) as A. veronii; 23 isolates (23%) as A. caviae; and 5 isolates (5.0%) as other genospecies. The genes encoding aerolysin (aer), cytolytic enterotoxin (act), and A. hydrophila isolate SSU enterotoxin (ast) were detected in 45 (87%), 4 (7.7%), and 9 (17%) of the 52 isolates tested, respectively. The gene encoding an extracellular lipase (alt) was not detected. Conclusion The majority of aeromonads from Libya fall within three genospecies (i.e. A. hydrophila, A. veronii, and A. caviae), and genes coding for toxin production are common among them. PMID:25216211

  17. Molecular basis of the remarkable species selectivity of an insecticidal sodium channel toxin from the African spider Augacephalus ezendami

    PubMed Central

    Herzig, Volker; Ikonomopoulou, Maria; Smith, Jennifer J.; Dziemborowicz, Sławomir; Gilchrist, John; Kuhn-Nentwig, Lucia; Rezende, Fernanda Oliveira; Moreira, Luciano Andrade; Nicholson, Graham M.; Bosmans, Frank; King, Glenn F.

    2016-01-01

    The inexorable decline in the armament of registered chemical insecticides has stimulated research into environmentally-friendly alternatives. Insecticidal spider-venom peptides are promising candidates for bioinsecticide development but it is challenging to find peptides that are specific for targeted pests. In the present study, we isolated an insecticidal peptide (Ae1a) from venom of the African spider Augacephalus ezendami (family Theraphosidae). Injection of Ae1a into sheep blowflies (Lucilia cuprina) induced rapid but reversible paralysis. In striking contrast, Ae1a was lethal to closely related fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) but induced no adverse effects in the recalcitrant lepidopteran pest Helicoverpa armigera. Electrophysiological experiments revealed that Ae1a potently inhibits the voltage-gated sodium channel BgNaV1 from the German cockroach Blattella germanica by shifting the threshold for channel activation to more depolarized potentials. In contrast, Ae1a failed to significantly affect sodium currents in dorsal unpaired median neurons from the American cockroach Periplaneta americana. We show that Ae1a interacts with the domain II voltage sensor and that sensitivity to the toxin is conferred by natural sequence variations in the S1–S2 loop of domain II. The phyletic specificity of Ae1a provides crucial information for development of sodium channel insecticides that target key insect pests without harming beneficial species. PMID:27383378

  18. Molecular basis of the remarkable species selectivity of an insecticidal sodium channel toxin from the African spider Augacephalus ezendami.

    PubMed

    Herzig, Volker; Ikonomopoulou, Maria; Smith, Jennifer J; Dziemborowicz, Sławomir; Gilchrist, John; Kuhn-Nentwig, Lucia; Rezende, Fernanda Oliveira; Moreira, Luciano Andrade; Nicholson, Graham M; Bosmans, Frank; King, Glenn F

    2016-01-01

    The inexorable decline in the armament of registered chemical insecticides has stimulated research into environmentally-friendly alternatives. Insecticidal spider-venom peptides are promising candidates for bioinsecticide development but it is challenging to find peptides that are specific for targeted pests. In the present study, we isolated an insecticidal peptide (Ae1a) from venom of the African spider Augacephalus ezendami (family Theraphosidae). Injection of Ae1a into sheep blowflies (Lucilia cuprina) induced rapid but reversible paralysis. In striking contrast, Ae1a was lethal to closely related fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster) but induced no adverse effects in the recalcitrant lepidopteran pest Helicoverpa armigera. Electrophysiological experiments revealed that Ae1a potently inhibits the voltage-gated sodium channel BgNaV1 from the German cockroach Blattella germanica by shifting the threshold for channel activation to more depolarized potentials. In contrast, Ae1a failed to significantly affect sodium currents in dorsal unpaired median neurons from the American cockroach Periplaneta americana. We show that Ae1a interacts with the domain II voltage sensor and that sensitivity to the toxin is conferred by natural sequence variations in the S1-S2 loop of domain II. The phyletic specificity of Ae1a provides crucial information for development of sodium channel insecticides that target key insect pests without harming beneficial species. PMID:27383378

  19. Contribution to the knowledge of Afrotropical Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae (Hymenoptera), with description of new species from Central African Republic and Uganda.

    PubMed

    Olmi, Massimo; van Noort, Simon; Guglielmino, Adalgisa

    2016-01-01

    An updated checklist of Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae from Central African Republic and Uganda is presented. The following new species of Dryinidae are described: from Central African Republic: Anteon dzanganum sp. n. (Anteoninae); from Uganda: Anteon granulatum sp. n., Anteon kibalense sp. n., Anteon makererense sp. n., Anteon mubfs sp. n. (Anteoninae); Bocchus kibalensis sp. n. (Bocchinae); Dryinus kibalus sp. n. (Dryininae); Gonatopus kanyawarus sp. n. (Gonatopodinae). The following species have been recorded for the first time from Central African Republic: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha madecassa Olmi, 1999a; Embolemus capensis Olmi, 1997; Dryinidae: Aphelopus mediocarinatus (Benoit, 1951d), Aphelopus testaceus Olmi, 1991, Aphelopus wittei Benoit, 1951c (Aphelopinae); Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon evertsi Olmi, 1989, Anteon gutturnium (Benoit, 1951b), Anteon inflatrix Benoit, 1951b, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon semajanna Olmi, Copeland & Guglielmino, 2015, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Pseudodryinus townesi (Olmi, 1984) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax tauricus Ponomarenko, 1970, Gonatopus camerounensis Olmi, 2011, Gonatopus kolyadai Olmi, 2007b, Neodryinus antiquus Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae); Sclerogibbidae: Probethylus callani Richards, 1939b; Sclerogibba algerica Benoit, 1963, Sclerogibba rapax Olmi, 2005a. The following species have been recorded for the first time from Uganda: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha magna Olmi, 1996; Dryinidae: Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon fisheri Olmi, 2003, Anteon hoyoi Olmi, 1984, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon townesi Olmi, 1984, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Bocchus bini Olmi, 1984 (Bocchinae); Dryinus saussurei (Ceballos, 1936) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax migratorius Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae). The following further species has been recorded for the first time from Mali: Sclerogibba algerica Benoit

  20. Contribution to the knowledge of Afrotropical Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae (Hymenoptera), with description of new species from Central African Republic and Uganda

    PubMed Central

    Olmi, Massimo; van Noort, Simon; Guglielmino, Adalgisa

    2016-01-01

    Abstract An updated checklist of Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae from Central African Republic and Uganda is presented. The following new species of Dryinidae are described: from Central African Republic: Anteon dzanganum sp. n. (Anteoninae); from Uganda: Anteon granulatum sp. n., Anteon kibalense sp. n., Anteon makererense sp. n., Anteon mubfs sp. n. (Anteoninae); Bocchus kibalensis sp. n. (Bocchinae); Dryinus kibalus sp. n. (Dryininae); Gonatopus kanyawarus sp. n. (Gonatopodinae). The following species have been recorded for the first time from Central African Republic: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha madecassa Olmi, 1999a; Embolemus capensis Olmi, 1997; Dryinidae: Aphelopus mediocarinatus (Benoit, 1951d), Aphelopus testaceus Olmi, 1991, Aphelopus wittei Benoit, 1951c (Aphelopinae); Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon evertsi Olmi, 1989, Anteon gutturnium (Benoit, 1951b), Anteon inflatrix Benoit, 1951b, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon semajanna Olmi, Copeland & Guglielmino, 2015, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Pseudodryinus townesi (Olmi, 1984) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax tauricus Ponomarenko, 1970, Gonatopus camerounensis Olmi, 2011, Gonatopus kolyadai Olmi, 2007b, Neodryinus antiquus Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae); Sclerogibbidae: Probethylus callani Richards, 1939b; Sclerogibba algerica Benoit, 1963, Sclerogibba rapax Olmi, 2005a. The following species have been recorded for the first time from Uganda: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha magna Olmi, 1996; Dryinidae: Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon fisheri Olmi, 2003, Anteon hoyoi Olmi, 1984, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon townesi Olmi, 1984, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Bocchus bini Olmi, 1984 (Bocchinae); Dryinus saussurei (Ceballos, 1936) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax migratorius Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae). The following further species has been recorded for the first time from Mali: Sclerogibba algerica

  1. A new African soft scale genus, Pseudocribrolecanium gen. nov. (Hemiptera: Coccoidea: Coccidae), erected for two species, including the citrus pest P. andersoni (Newstead) comb. nov.

    PubMed

    Kondo, Takumasa

    2006-01-01

    A new African genus of soft scale insects, Pseudocribrolecanium gen. nov. is erected to accommodate Akermes colae Green & Laing and Cribrolecanium andersoni (Newstead). The adult females and first-instar nymphs of the two species are redescribed and illustrated. Taxonomic keys to separate the adult females and first-instar nymphs are provided. The affinity of Pseudocribrolecanium with the tribe Paralecaniini in the subfamily Coccinae is discussed. PMID:19537997

  2. A new African soft scale genus, Pseudocribrolecanium gen. nov. (Hemiptera: Coccoidea: Coccidae), erected for two species, including the citrus pest P. andersoni (Newstead) comb. nov

    PubMed Central

    Kondo, Takumasa

    2006-01-01

    A new African genus of soft scale insects, Pseudocribrolecanium gen. nov. is erected to accommodate Akermes colae Green & Laing and Cribrolecanium andersoni (Newstead). The adult females and first-instar nymphs of the two species are redescribed and illustrated. Taxonomic keys to separate the adult females and first-instar nymphs are provided. The affinity of Pseudocribrolecanium with the tribe Paralecaniini in the subfamily Coccinae is discussed. PMID:19537997

  3. A hybrid phylogenetic-phylogenomic approach for species tree estimation in African Agama lizards with applications to biogeography, character evolution, and diversification.

    PubMed

    Leaché, Adam D; Wagner, Philipp; Linkem, Charles W; Böhme, Wolfgang; Papenfuss, Theodore J; Chong, Rebecca A; Lavin, Brian R; Bauer, Aaron M; Nielsen, Stuart V; Greenbaum, Eli; Rödel, Mark-Oliver; Schmitz, Andreas; LeBreton, Matthew; Ineich, Ivan; Chirio, Laurent; Ofori-Boateng, Caleb; Eniang, Edem A; Baha El Din, Sherif; Lemmon, Alan R; Burbrink, Frank T

    2014-10-01

    Africa is renowned for its biodiversity and endemicity, yet little is known about the factors shaping them across the continent. African Agama lizards (45 species) have a pan-continental distribution, making them an ideal model for investigating biogeography. Many species have evolved conspicuous sexually dimorphic traits, including extravagant breeding coloration in adult males, large adult male body sizes, and variability in social systems among colorful versus drab species. We present a comprehensive time-calibrated species tree for Agama, and their close relatives, using a hybrid phylogenetic-phylogenomic approach that combines traditional Sanger sequence data from five loci for 57 species (146 samples) with anchored phylogenomic data from 215 nuclear genes for 23 species. The Sanger data are analyzed using coalescent-based species tree inference using (*)BEAST, and the resulting posterior distribution of species trees is attenuated using the phylogenomic tree as a backbone constraint. The result is a time-calibrated species tree for Agama that includes 95% of all species, multiple samples for most species, strong support for the major clades, and strong support for most of the initial divergence events. Diversification within Agama began approximately 23 million years ago (Ma), and separate radiations in Southern, East, West, and Northern Africa have been diversifying for >10Myr. A suite of traits (morphological, coloration, and sociality) are tightly correlated and show a strong signal of high morphological disparity within clades, whereby the subsequent evolution of convergent phenotypes has accompanied diversification into new biogeographic areas. PMID:24973715

  4. Non-equilibrium estimates of gene flow inferred from nuclear genealogies suggest that Iberian and North African wall lizards (Podarcis spp.) are an assemblage of incipient species

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background The study of recently-diverged species offers significant challenges both in the definition of evolutionary entities and in the estimation of gene flow among them. Iberian and North African wall lizards (Podarcis) constitute a cryptic species complex for which previous assessments of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and allozyme variation are concordant in describing the existence of several highly differentiated evolutionary units. However, these studies report important differences suggesting the occurrence of gene flow among forms. Here we study sequence variation in two nuclear introns, β-fibint7 and 6-Pgdint7, to further investigate overall evolutionary dynamics and test hypotheses related to species delimitation within this complex. Results Both nuclear gene genealogies fail to define species as monophyletic. To discriminate between the effects of incomplete lineage sorting and gene flow in setting this pattern, we estimated migration rates among species using both FST-based estimators of gene flow, which assume migration-drift equilibrium, and a coalescent approach based on a model of divergence with gene flow. Equilibrium estimates of gene flow suggest widespread introgression between species, but coalescent estimates describe virtually zero admixture between most (but not all) species pairs. This suggests that although gene flow among forms may have occurred the main cause for species polyphyly is incomplete lineage sorting, implying that most forms have been isolated since their divergence. This observation is therefore in accordance with previous reports of strong differentiation based on mtDNA and allozyme data. Conclusion These results corroborate most forms of Iberian and North African Podarcis as differentiated, although incipient, species, supporting a gradual view of speciation, according to which species may persist as distinct despite some permeability to genetic exchange and without having clearly definable genetic boundaries. Additionally

  5. North African hybrid sparrows (Passer domesticus, P. hispaniolensis) back from oblivion - ecological segregation and asymmetric mitochondrial introgression between parental species.

    PubMed

    Ait Belkacem, Abdelkrim; Gast, Oliver; Stuckas, Heiko; Canal, David; LoValvo, Mario; Giacalone, Gabriele; Päckert, Martin

    2016-08-01

    A stabilized hybrid form of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus) and the Spanish sparrow (P. hispaniolensis) is known as Passer italiae from the Italian Peninsula and a few Mediterranean islands. The growing attention for the Italian hybrid sparrow and increasing knowledge on its biology and genetic constitution greatly contrast the complete lack of knowledge of the long-known phenotypical hybrid sparrow populations from North Africa. Our study provides new data on the breeding biology and variation of mitochondrial DNA in three Algerian populations of house sparrows, Spanish sparrows, and phenotypical hybrids. In two field seasons, the two species occupied different breeding habitats: Spanish sparrows were only found in rural areas outside the cities and bred in open-cup nests built in large jujube bushes. In contrast, house sparrows bred only in the town centers and occupied nesting holes in walls of buildings. Phenotypical hybrids were always associated with house sparrow populations. House sparrows and phenotypical hybrids started breeding mid of March, and most pairs had three successive clutches, whereas Spanish sparrows started breeding almost one month later and had only two successive clutches. Mitochondrial introgression is strongly asymmetric because about 75% of the rural Spanish sparrow population carried house sparrow haplotypes. In contrast, populations of the Italian hybrid form, P. italiae, were genetically least diverse among all study populations and showed a near-fixation of house sparrow haplotypes that elsewhere were extremely rare or that were even unique for the Italian Peninsula. Such differences between mitochondrial gene pools of Italian and North African hybrid sparrow populations provide first evidence that different demographic histories have shaped the extant genetic diversity observed on both continents. PMID:27551376

  6. Comparative chromosomal localization of 45S and 5S rDNAs and implications for genome evolution in Cucumis.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhen-Tao; Yang, Shu-Qiong; Li, Zi-Ang; Zhang, Yun-Xia; Wang, Yun-Zhu; Cheng, Chun-Yan; Li, Ji; Chen, Jin-Feng; Lou, Qun-Feng

    2016-07-01

    Ribosomal DNAs are useful cytogenetic markers for chromosome analysis. Studies investigating site numbers and distributions of rDNAs have provided important information for elucidating genome organization and chromosomal relationships of many species by fluorescence in situ hybridization. But relevant studies are scarce for species of the genus Cucumis, especially in wild species. In the present study, FISH was conducted to investigate the organization of 45S and 5S rDNA among 20 Cucumis accessions, including cultivars and wild accessions. Our results showed that the number of 45S rDNA sites varied from one to five pairs in different accessions, and most of these sites are located at the terminal regions of chromosomes. Interestingly, up to five pairs of 45S rDNA sites were observed in C. sativus var. sativus, the species which has the lowest chromosome number, i.e., 2n = 14. Only one pair of 5S rDNA sites was detected in all accessions, except for C. heptadactylus, C. sp, and C. spp that had two pairs of 5S rDNA sites. The distributions of 5S rDNA sites showed more variation than 45S rDNA sites. The phylogenetic analysis in this study showed that 45S and 5S rDNA have contrasting evolutionary patterns. We find that 5S rDNA has a polyploidization-related tendency towards the terminal location from an interstitial location but maintains a conserved site number, whereas the 45S rDNA showed a trend of increasing site number but a relatively conserved location. PMID:27334092

  7. Protective mechanisms of Cucumis sativus in diabetes-related modelsof oxidative stress and carbonyl stress

    PubMed Central

    Heidari, Himan; Kamalinejad, Mohammad; Noubarani, Maryam; Rahmati, Mokhtar; Jafarian, Iman; Adiban, Hasan; Eskandari, Mohammad Reza

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Oxidative stress and carbonyl stress have essential mediatory roles in the development of diabetes and its related complications through increasing free radicals production and impairing antioxidant defense systems. Different chemical and natural compounds have been suggested for decreasing such disorders associated with diabetes. The objectives of the present study were to investigate the protective effects of Cucumis sativus (C. sativus) fruit (cucumber) in oxidative and carbonyl stress models. These diabetes-related models with overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive carbonyl species (RCS) simulate conditions observed in chronic hyperglycemia. Methods: Cytotoxicity induced by cumene hydroperoxide (oxidative stress model) or glyoxal (carbonyl stress model) were measured and the protective effects of C. sativus were evaluated using freshly isolated rat hepatocytes. Results: Aqueous extract of C. sativus fruit (40 μg/mL) prevented all cytotoxicity markers in both the oxidative and carbonyl stress models including cell lysis, ROS formation, membrane lipid peroxidation, depletion of glutathione, mitochondrial membrane potential decline, lysosomal labialization, and proteolysis. The extract also protected hepatocytes from protein carbonylation induced by glyoxal. Our results indicated that C. sativus is able to prevent oxidative stress and carbonyl stress in the isolated hepatocytes. Conclusion: It can be concluded that C. sativus has protective effects in diabetes complications and can be considered a safe and suitable candidate for decreasing the oxidative stress and carbonyl stress that is typically observed in diabetes mellitus. PMID:27340622

  8. Genetics, Morphology, Advertisement Calls, and Historical Records Distinguish Six New Polyploid Species of African Clawed Frog (Xenopus, Pipidae) from West and Central Africa

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Ben J.; Carter, Timothy F.; Greenbaum, Eli; Gvoždík, Václav; Kelley, Darcy B.; McLaughlin, Patrick J.; Pauwels, Olivier S. G.; Portik, Daniel M.; Stanley, Edward L.; Tinsley, Richard C.; Tobias, Martha L.; Blackburn, David C.

    2015-01-01

    African clawed frogs, genus Xenopus, are extraordinary among vertebrates in the diversity of their polyploid species and the high number of independent polyploidization events that occurred during their diversification. Here we update current understanding of the evolutionary history of this group and describe six new species from west and central sub-Saharan Africa, including four tetraploids and two dodecaploids. We provide information on molecular variation, morphology, karyotypes, vocalizations, and estimated geographic ranges, which support the distinctiveness of these new species. We resurrect Xenopus calcaratus from synonymy of Xenopus tropicalis and refer populations from Bioko Island and coastal Cameroon (near Mt. Cameroon) to this species. To facilitate comparisons to the new species, we also provide comments on the type specimens, morphology, and distributions of X. epitropicalis, X. tropicalis, and X. fraseri. This includes significantly restricted application of the names X. fraseri and X. epitropicalis, the first of which we argue is known definitively only from type specimens and possibly one other specimen. Inferring the evolutionary histories of these new species allows refinement of species groups within Xenopus and leads to our recognition of two subgenera (Xenopus and Silurana) and three species groups within the subgenus Xenopus (amieti, laevis, and muelleri species groups). PMID:26672747

  9. Genetics, Morphology, Advertisement Calls, and Historical Records Distinguish Six New Polyploid Species of African Clawed Frog (Xenopus, Pipidae) from West and Central Africa.

    PubMed

    Evans, Ben J; Carter, Timothy F; Greenbaum, Eli; Gvoždík, Václav; Kelley, Darcy B; McLaughlin, Patrick J; Pauwels, Olivier S G; Portik, Daniel M; Stanley, Edward L; Tinsley, Richard C; Tobias, Martha L; Blackburn, David C

    2015-01-01

    African clawed frogs, genus Xenopus, are extraordinary among vertebrates in the diversity of their polyploid species and the high number of independent polyploidization events that occurred during their diversification. Here we update current understanding of the evolutionary history of this group and describe six new species from west and central sub-Saharan Africa, including four tetraploids and two dodecaploids. We provide information on molecular variation, morphology, karyotypes, vocalizations, and estimated geographic ranges, which support the distinctiveness of these new species. We resurrect Xenopus calcaratus from synonymy of Xenopus tropicalis and refer populations from Bioko Island and coastal Cameroon (near Mt. Cameroon) to this species. To facilitate comparisons to the new species, we also provide comments on the type specimens, morphology, and distributions of X. epitropicalis, X. tropicalis, and X. fraseri. This includes significantly restricted application of the names X. fraseri and X. epitropicalis, the first of which we argue is known definitively only from type specimens and possibly one other specimen. Inferring the evolutionary histories of these new species allows refinement of species groups within Xenopus and leads to our recognition of two subgenera (Xenopus and Silurana) and three species groups within the subgenus Xenopus (amieti, laevis, and muelleri species groups). PMID:26672747

  10. Sucrose accumulation in mature sweet melon fruits. [Cucumis melo

    SciTech Connect

    Schaffer, A.A.; Aloni, B.

    1987-04-01

    Mesocarp tissue from sucrose-accumulating sweet melon (Cucumis melo cv. Galia) showed sucrose synthase activity (ca 1 nkat/gfw) while soluble acid invertase and sucrose phosphate synthase activities were not observed. Sucrose uptake into mesocarp discs was linear with sucrose concentration (1-500 mM) and unaffected by PCMBS and CCCP. Sucrose compartmentation into the vacuole also increased linearly with sucrose concentration as indicated by compartmental efflux kinetics. Mesocarp discs incubated in /sup 14/C-fructose + UDP-glu synthesized /sup 14/C-sucrose and efflux kinetics indicated that the /sup 14/C-sucrose was compartmentalized. These data support the hypothesis that two mechanisms are involved in sucrose accumulation in sweet melon: (1) compartmentation of intact sucrose and (2) synthesis of sucrose via sucrose synthase and subsequent compartmentation in the vacuole.

  11. Arsenic Uptake by Muskmelon (Cucumis melo) Plants from Contaminated Water.

    PubMed

    Hettick, Bryan E; Cañas-Carrell, Jaclyn E; Martin, Kirt; French, Amanda D; Klein, David M

    2016-09-01

    Arsenic is a carcinogenic element that occurs naturally in the environment. High levels of arsenic are found in water in some parts of the world, including Texas. The aims of this study were to determine the distribution of arsenic in muskmelon (Cucumis melo) plants accumulated from arsenic spiked water and to observe effects on plant biomass. Plants were grown and irrigated using water spiked with variable concentrations of arsenic. Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was used to quantify arsenic in different parts of the plant and fruit. Under all conditions tested in this study, the highest concentrations of arsenic were found in the leaves, soil, and roots. Arsenic in the water had no significant effect on plant biomass. Fruits analyzed in this study had arsenic concentrations of 101 μg/kg or less. Consuming these fruits would result in less arsenic exposure than drinking water at recommended levels. PMID:27460822

  12. [Co-crystallization of cucumber concentrate (Cucumis sativa L.)].

    PubMed

    Vázquez, A; Beristain, C I

    1998-09-01

    A sucrose syrup of 70 degrees Brix was concentrated until a concentration greater than 95 degrees Brix was attained. It was studied the effect of concentration (20, 25 and 35 degrees Brix) on the physical properties of the cucumber (Cucumis sativa L.) granules. Moisture content, solubility, and density were determined. The best results were found for the concentrated at 30 degrees Brix. Lemon juice was added to the concentrated to decrease pH from 5.5 to 4.0 to improve flavor and to avoid growth of molds and yeast. No significant differences in the higroscopicity were found between both pH (s). Sensory evaluation shows that 30 judges of 45 preferred the sample made with the co-crystallizate containing lemon juice. PMID:9951539

  13. Next generation sequencing and omics in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) breeding directed research.

    PubMed

    Pawełkowicz, Magdalena; Zieliński, Konrad; Zielińska, Dorota; Pląder, Wojciech; Yagi, Kouhei; Wojcieszek, Michał; Siedlecka, Ewa; Bartoszewski, Grzegorz; Skarzyńska, Agnieszka; Przybecki, Zbigniew

    2016-01-01

    In the post-genomic era the availability of genomic tools and resources is leading us to novel generation methods in plant breeding, as they facilitate the study of the genotype and its relationship with the phenotype, in particular for complex traits. In this study we have mainly concentrated on the Cucumis sativus and (but much less) Cucurbitaceae family several important vegetable crops. There are many reports on research conducted in Cucurbitaceae plant breeding programs on the ripening process, phloem transport, disease resistance, cold tolerance and fruit quality traits. This paper presents the role played by new omic technologies in the creation of knowledge on the mechanisms of the formation of the breeding features. The analysis of NGS (NGS-next generation sequencing) data allows the discovery of new genes and regulatory sequences, their positions, and makes available large collections of molecular markers. Genome-wide expression studies provide breeders with an understanding of the molecular basis of complex traits. Firstly a high density map should be created for the reference genome, then each re-sequencing data could be mapped and new markers brought out into breeding populations. The paper also presents methods that could be used in the future for the creation of variability and genomic modification of the species in question. It has been shown also the state and usefulness in breeding the chloroplastomic and mitochondriomic study. PMID:26566826

  14. Effects of Acifluorfen on Endogenous Antioxidants and Protective Enzymes in Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Cotyledons

    PubMed Central

    Kenyon, William H.; Duke, Stephen O.

    1985-01-01

    The herbicide acifluorfen (2-chloro-4-(trifluoromethyl)phenoxy-2-nitrobenzoate) causes strong photooxidative destruction of pigments and lipids in sensitive plant species. Antioxidants and oxygen radical scavengers slow the bleaching action of the herbicide. The effect of acifluorfen on glutathione and ascorbate levels in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) cotyledon discs was investigated to assess the relationship between herbicide activity and endogenous antioxidants. Acifluorfen decreased the levels of glutathione and ascorbate over 50% in discs exposed to less than 1.5 hours of white light (450 microeinsteins per square meter per second). Coincident increases in dehydroascorbate and glutathione disulfide were not observed. Acifluorfen also caused the rapid depletion of ascorbate in far-red light grown plants which were photosynthetically incompetent. Glutathione reductase, dehydroascorbate reductase, superoxide dismutase, ascorbate oxidase, ascorbate free radical reductase, peroxidase, and catalase activities rapidly decreased in acifluorfen-treated tissue exposed to white light. None of the enzymes were inhibited in vitro by the herbicide. Acifluorfen causes irreversible photooxidative destruction of plant tissue, in part, by depleting endogenous antioxidants and inhibiting the activities of protective enzymes. PMID:16664506

  15. From Lake Malawi Drilling: East African Climate May Have Caused Major Evolutionary Turnover in Mammalian Species During MIS 14

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Thomas; Werne, Josef

    2016-04-01

    Hominin evolution underwent important changes in the last 1.3 million years, including the extinction of Paranthropus at about 1.2 Ma, leaving Homo as the sole hominin genus. Our genus experienced a major increase in cranial capacity at about 500 ka, and our species, H. sapiens, first appeared at ~200 ka. There was a major turnover in mammalian species in East Africa between 540 and 400 ka, favoring descendants of smaller size and less specialized diet. An understanding of what drove evolution in these directions is fundamental to understanding the development of modern H. sapiens. Climate certainly played a role, for it is the principal factor that influences the distribution of vegetation and habitability on the landscape. We present a 1.3 million year record of temperature and hydroclimate in the basin of Lake Malawi, the second deepest lake in Africa, derived from a 380 m sediment sequence taken from a water depth of 590 m by the Lake Malawi Drilling Project. Seismic reflection profiles used to select the site portray an undisturbed sedimentary section that was not impacted by erosion, turbidity currents or mass wasting events. Sediment samples were analyzed to produce records of temperature (TEX86) and aridity (Ca content and leaf wax δ13C). The temperature record displays progressively larger amplitude glacial-interglacial variations from MIS 13 (~500 ka) to MIS 5 (~125 ka). Intervals of low Ca abundance, which reflect lake high stands, correlate with times of depleted δ13Cwax and relatively warm temperatures. The Malawi basin experienced warm, wet interglacials and cooler (by about 2 - 4°C), dry glacial periods, with roughly a 100 ky periodicity since the Mid-Pleistocene Transition (MPT), about 900 ka. The paleoclimate record from Lake Malawi sediments portrays a transition from a highly variable and predominantly arid climate prior to 900 ka to a progressively more humid environment after the MPT dominated by 100 ky cycles consisting of warm, wet

  16. Boron excess affects photosynthesis and antioxidant apparatus of greenhouse Cucurbita pepo and Cucumis sativus.

    PubMed

    Landi, Marco; Remorini, Damiano; Pardossi, Alberto; Guidi, Lucia

    2013-11-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the behavior of zucchini (Cucurbita pepo L.) and cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) under boron (B) excess. Plants were grown under greenhouse conditions in a sandy soil-peat mixture using a nutrient solution containing 0.2 (control), 10 and 20 mg L(-1) B. Visible symptoms were quantified and leaf B accumulation, gas exchanges, chlorophyll (Chl) a fluorescence, malondialdehyde by-products and antioxidants were investigated 20 days after the beginning of the treatments. Boron toxicity induced oxidative load and leaf necrotic burns coupled with the reduction of leaf growth and biomass accumulation in both species. Boron excess resulted in a decrease of Chl a/b ratio, potential (Fv/Fm) and actual (ΦPSII) PSII quantum efficiency, photosynthetic rate (Pn), stomatal conductance (gs), and transpiration (E) as well. A general stimulation of the antioxidant enzymes ascorbate peroxidase, catalase and superoxide dismutase was observed, and a significant increase in the oxidized form of ascorbate and glutathione was evidenced for treated plants of both species. A difference between the two species was observed: C. pepo appeared to be more sensitive to B stress being damaged at all B concentration. C. sativus grown at 10 mg L(-1) B in nutrient solution showed some down-regulated mechanisms, i.e. increase in Chl b content and a good photochemical PSII efficiency as well as a higher amount of constitutive antioxidant molecules, that, however, are not sufficient to contrast the negative effects of B. PMID:23779070

  17. The complete chloroplast genome sequence of the wild cucumber Cucumis hystrix Chakr. (Cucumis, cucurbitaceae).

    PubMed

    Wu, Zhiming; Jia, Li; Shen, Jia; Jiang, Biao; Qian, Chuntao; Lou, Qunfeng; Li, Ji; Chen, Jinfeng

    2016-01-01

    The complete nucleotide sequence of the wild cucumber (C. hystrix Chakr.) chloroplast genome has been determined in this study. The genome was composed of 155,031 bp containing a pair of inverted repeats (IRs) of 25,150 bp, which was separated by a large single-copy region of 86,564 bp and a small single-copy region of 18,166 bp. The chloroplast genome contained 130 known genes, including 89 protein-coding genes, 8 ribosomal RNA genes (4 rRNA species) and 37 tRNA genes (30 tRNA species), with 18 of them located in the IR region. In these genes, 16 contained 1 intron, and 2 genes and one ycf contained 2 introns. PMID:24450715

  18. Occurrence of nodulation in unexplored leguminous trees native to the West African tropical rainforest and inoculation response of native species useful in reforestation.

    PubMed

    Diabate, Moussa; Munive, Antonio; de Faria, Sérgio Miana; Ba, Amadou; Dreyfus, Bernard; Galiana, Antoine

    2005-04-01

    Despite the abundance and diversity of timber tree legumes in the West African rainforest, their ability to form nitrogen-fixing nodules in symbiosis with rhizobia, and their response to rhizobial inoculation, remain poorly documented. In the first part of this study the occurrence of nodulation was determined in 156 leguminous species growing in six natural forest areas in Guinea, mostly mature trees. In the second part, an in situ experiment of rhizobial inoculation was performed on eight selected tree species belonging to three genera: Albizia, Erythrophleum and Millettia. Of the 97 plant species and 14 genera that had never been examined before this study, 31 species and four genera were reported to be nodulated. After 4 months of growing in a nursery and a further 11 months after transplantation of plants to the field, we observed a highly significant (P < 0.001) and positive effect of inoculation with Bradyrhizobium sp. strains on the growth of the eight tree species tested. The importance of determining the nodulation ability of unexplored local trees and subsequently using this information for inoculation in reforestation programmes was demonstrated. PMID:15760366

  19. De Novo Transcriptome Analysis of Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyun A; Shin, Ah-Young; Lee, Min-Seon; Lee, Hee-Jeong; Lee, Heung-Ryul; Ahn, Jongmoon; Nahm, Seokhyeon; Jo, Sung-Hwan; Park, Jeong Mee; Kwon, Suk-Yoon

    2016-01-01

    Oriental melon (Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa) is one of six subspecies of melon and is cultivated widely in East Asia, including China, Japan, and Korea. Although oriental melon is economically valuable in Asia and is genetically distinct from other subspecies, few reports of genome-scale research on oriental melon have been published. We generated 30.5 and 36.8 Gb of raw RNA sequence data from the female and male flowers, leaves, roots, and fruit of two oriental melon varieties, Korean landrace (KM) and Breeding line of NongWoo Bio Co. (NW), respectively. From the raw reads, 64,998 transcripts from KM and 100,234 transcripts from NW were de novo assembled. The assembled transcripts were used to identify molecular markers (e.g., single-nucleotide polymorphisms and simple sequence repeats), detect tissue-specific expressed genes, and construct a genetic linkage map. In total, 234 single-nucleotide polymorphisms and 25 simple sequence repeats were screened from 7,871 and 8,052 candidates, respectively, between the KM and NW varieties and used for construction of a genetic map with 94 F2 population specimens. The genetic linkage map consisted of 12 linkage groups, and 248 markers were assigned. These transcriptome and molecular marker data provide information useful for molecular breeding of oriental melon and further comparative studies of the Cucurbitaceae family. PMID:26743902

  20. De Novo Transcriptome Analysis of Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyun A; Shin, Ah-Young; Lee, Min-Seon; Lee, Hee-Jeong; Lee, Heung-Ryul; Ahn, Jongmoon; Nahm, Seokhyeon; Jo, Sung-Hwan; Park, Jeong Mee; Kwon, Suk-Yoon

    2016-02-01

    Oriental melon (Cucumis melo L. var. makuwa) is one of six subspecies of melon and is cultivated widely in East Asia, including China, Japan, and Korea. Although oriental melon is economically valuable in Asia and is genetically distinct from other subspecies, few reports of genome-scale research on oriental melon have been published. We generated 30.5 and 36.8 Gb of raw RNA sequence data from the female and male flowers, leaves, roots, and fruit of two oriental melon varieties, Korean landrace (KM) and Breeding line of NongWoo Bio Co. (NW), respectively. From the raw reads, 64,998 transcripts from KM and 100,234 transcripts from NW were de novo assembled. The assembled transcripts were used to identify molecular markers (e.g., single-nucleotide polymorphisms and simple sequence repeats), detect tissue-specific expressed genes, and construct a genetic linkage map. In total, 234 single-nucleotide polymorphisms and 25 simple sequence repeats were screened from 7,871 and 8,052 candidates, respectively, between the KM and NW varieties and used for construction of a genetic map with 94 F2 population specimens. The genetic linkage map consisted of 12 linkage groups, and 248 markers were assigned. These transcriptome and molecular marker data provide information useful for molecular breeding of oriental melon and further comparative studies of the Cucurbitaceae family. PMID:26743902

  1. Transcriptome profiling of Cucumis melo fruit development and ripening.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong; Wang, Huaisong; Yi, Hongping; Zhai, Wenqiang; Wang, Guangzhi; Fu, Qiushi

    2016-01-01

    Hami melon (Cucumis melo) is the most important melon crop grown in the north-western provinces of China. In order to elucidate the genetic and molecular basis of developmental changes related to size, flesh, sugar and sour content, we performed a transcriptome profiling of its fruit development. Over 155 000 000 clean reads were mapped to MELONOMICS genome, yielding a total of 23 299 expressed genes. Of these, 554 genes were specifically expressed in flowers, and 3260 genes in fruit flesh tissues. The 7892 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were related to fruit development and mediated diverse metabolic processes and pathways; 83 DEGs and 13 DEGs were possibly associated with sucrose and citric acid accumulation, respectively. The quantitative real-time PCR results showed that six out of eight selected candidate genes displayed expression trends similar to our DEGs. This study profiled the gene expression related to different growing stages of flower and fruit at the whole transcriptome level to provide an insight into the regulatory mechanism underlying Hami melon fruit development. PMID:27162641

  2. Transcriptome profiling of Cucumis melo fruit development and ripening

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hong; Wang, Huaisong; Yi, Hongping; Zhai, Wenqiang; Wang, Guangzhi; Fu, Qiushi

    2016-01-01

    Hami melon (Cucumis melo) is the most important melon crop grown in the north-western provinces of China. In order to elucidate the genetic and molecular basis of developmental changes related to size, flesh, sugar and sour content, we performed a transcriptome profiling of its fruit development. Over 155 000 000 clean reads were mapped to MELONOMICS genome, yielding a total of 23 299 expressed genes. Of these, 554 genes were specifically expressed in flowers, and 3260 genes in fruit flesh tissues. The 7892 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were related to fruit development and mediated diverse metabolic processes and pathways; 83 DEGs and 13 DEGs were possibly associated with sucrose and citric acid accumulation, respectively. The quantitative real-time PCR results showed that six out of eight selected candidate genes displayed expression trends similar to our DEGs. This study profiled the gene expression related to different growing stages of flower and fruit at the whole transcriptome level to provide an insight into the regulatory mechanism underlying Hami melon fruit development. PMID:27162641

  3. Exploring a new serine protease from Cucumis sativus L.

    PubMed

    Nafeesa, Zohara; Shivalingu, B R; Vivek, H K; Priya, B S; Swamy, S Nanjunda

    2015-03-01

    Coagulation is an important physiological process in hemostasis which is activated by sequential action of proteases. This study aims to understand the involvement of aqueous fruit extract of Cucumis sativus L. (AqFEC) European burp less variety in blood coagulation cascade. AqFEC hydrolyzed casein in a dose-dependent manner. The presence of protease activity was further confirmed by casein zymography which revealed the possible presence of two high molecular weight protease(s). The proteolytic activity was inhibited only by phenyl methyl sulphonyl fluoride suggesting the presence of serine protease(s). In a dose-dependent manner, AqFEC also hydrolysed Aα and Bβ subunits of fibrinogen, whereas it failed to degrade the γ subunit of fibrinogen even at a concentration as high as 100 μg and incubation time up to 4 h. AqFEC reduced the clotting time of citrated plasma by 87.65%. The protease and fibrinogenolytic activity of AqFEC suggests its possible role in stopping the bleeding and ensuing wound healing process. PMID:25577345

  4. Defense Responses in Infected and Elicited Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Hypocotyl Segments Exhibiting Acquired Resistance.

    PubMed Central

    Siegrist, J.; Jeblick, W.; Kauss, H.

    1994-01-01

    Segments from dark-grown cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) hypocotyls were used to study defense reactions occurring upon fungal infection and induced by elicitors in the same tissue. The segments were rendered resistant to infection by Colletotrichum lagenarium either by growing the seedlings in the presence of dichloroisonicotinic acid (DCIA) or by preincubation of the cut segments with DCIA, salicylic acid (SA), or 5-chlorosalicylic acid (5CSA). This resistance appears to be due mainly to inhibition of fungal penetration into epidermal cells. In the resistant hypocotyl segments, the fungus induced, at the time of attempted penetration, an increased deposition of phenolics, which were visualized by autofluorescence. These phenolics were located mainly in the epidermal cell wall around and in the emerging papillae below appressoria and were quantified either as lignin-like polymers by the thioglycolic acid method or as 4-OH-benzaldehyde, 4-OH-benzoic, or 4-coumaric acid liberated upon treatment with alkali at room temperature. Pretreatment with DCIA, SA, and 5CSA induced little chitinase activity, but this activity greatly increased in resistant tissues upon subsequent infection. These observations indicate that resistance is associated with an improved perception of the pathogen stimulus resulting in the enhanced induction of diverse defense reactions. When the cut segments were pretreated with DCIA, SA, or 5CSA and then split and incubated with chitosan fragments, the deposition of cell wall phenolics was also enhanced. These pretreated and split segments also exhibited an increase in the rapid production of activated oxygen species induced by an elicitor preparation from Phytophthora megasperma f. sp. Glya. Pretreatment of the segments with methyl jasmonate neither induced resistance nor enhanced induction of cell wall phenolics upon fungal infection, although we observed in the corresponding split segments some increase in chitosan-induced cell wall phenolics and

  5. Defense Responses in Infected and Elicited Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Hypocotyl Segments Exhibiting Acquired Resistance.

    PubMed

    Siegrist, J.; Jeblick, W.; Kauss, H.

    1994-08-01

    Segments from dark-grown cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) hypocotyls were used to study defense reactions occurring upon fungal infection and induced by elicitors in the same tissue. The segments were rendered resistant to infection by Colletotrichum lagenarium either by growing the seedlings in the presence of dichloroisonicotinic acid (DCIA) or by preincubation of the cut segments with DCIA, salicylic acid (SA), or 5-chlorosalicylic acid (5CSA). This resistance appears to be due mainly to inhibition of fungal penetration into epidermal cells. In the resistant hypocotyl segments, the fungus induced, at the time of attempted penetration, an increased deposition of phenolics, which were visualized by autofluorescence. These phenolics were located mainly in the epidermal cell wall around and in the emerging papillae below appressoria and were quantified either as lignin-like polymers by the thioglycolic acid method or as 4-OH-benzaldehyde, 4-OH-benzoic, or 4-coumaric acid liberated upon treatment with alkali at room temperature. Pretreatment with DCIA, SA, and 5CSA induced little chitinase activity, but this activity greatly increased in resistant tissues upon subsequent infection. These observations indicate that resistance is associated with an improved perception of the pathogen stimulus resulting in the enhanced induction of diverse defense reactions. When the cut segments were pretreated with DCIA, SA, or 5CSA and then split and incubated with chitosan fragments, the deposition of cell wall phenolics was also enhanced. These pretreated and split segments also exhibited an increase in the rapid production of activated oxygen species induced by an elicitor preparation from Phytophthora megasperma f. sp. Glya. Pretreatment of the segments with methyl jasmonate neither induced resistance nor enhanced induction of cell wall phenolics upon fungal infection, although we observed in the corresponding split segments some increase in chitosan-induced cell wall phenolics and

  6. Development of microsatellite markers from an enriched genomic library for genetic analysis of melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    PubMed Central

    Ritschel, Patricia Silva; Lins, Tulio Cesar de Lima; Tristan, Rodrigo Lourenço; Buso, Gláucia Salles Cortopassi; Buso, José Amauri; Ferreira, Márcio Elias

    2004-01-01

    Background Despite the great advances in genomic technology observed in several crop species, the availability of molecular tools such as microsatellite markers has been limited in melon (Cucumis melo L.) and cucurbit species. The development of microsatellite markers will have a major impact on genetic analysis and breeding of melon, especially on the generation of marker saturated genetic maps and implementation of marker assisted breeding programs. Genomic microsatellite enriched libraries can be an efficient alternative for marker development in such species. Results Seven hundred clones containing microsatellite sequences from a Tsp-AG/TC microsatellite enriched library were identified and one-hundred and forty-four primer pairs designed and synthesized. When 67 microsatellite markers were tested on a panel of melon and other cucurbit accessions, 65 revealed DNA polymorphisms among the melon accessions. For some cucurbit species, such as Cucumis sativus, up to 50% of the melon microsatellite markers could be readily used for DNA polymophism assessment, representing a significant reduction of marker development costs. A random sample of 25 microsatellite markers was extracted from the new microsatellite marker set and characterized on 40 accessions of melon, generating an allelic frequency database for the species. The average expected heterozygosity was 0.52, varying from 0.45 to 0.70, indicating that a small set of selected markers should be sufficient to solve questions regarding genotype identity and variety protection. Genetic distances based on microsatellite polymorphism were congruent with data obtained from RAPD marker analysis. Mapping analysis was initiated with 55 newly developed markers and most primers showed segregation according to Mendelian expectations. Linkage analysis detected linkage between 56% of the markers, distributed in nine linkage groups. Conclusions Genomic library microsatellite enrichment is an efficient procedure for marker

  7. Enterotoxins and emetic toxins production by Bacillus cereus and other species of Bacillus isolated from Soumbala and Bikalga, African alkaline fermented food condiments.

    PubMed

    Ouoba, Labia Irene I; Thorsen, Line; Varnam, Alan H

    2008-06-10

    The ability of various species of Bacillus from fermented seeds of Parkia biglobosa known as African locust bean (Soumbala) and fermented seeds of Hibiscus sabdariffa (Bikalga) was investigated. The study included screening of the isolates by haemolysis on blood agar, detection of toxins in broth and during the fermentation of African locust bean using the Bacillus cereus Enterotoxin Reverse Passive Latex Agglutination test kit (BCET-RPLA) and the Bacillus Diarrhoeal Enterotoxin Visual Immunoassay (BDEVIA). Detection of genes encoding cytotoxin K (CytK), haemolysin BL (Hbl A, Hbl C, Hbl D), non-hemolytic enterotoxin (NheA, NheB, NheC) and EM1 specific of emetic toxin producers was also investigated using PCR with single pair and multiplex primers. Of 41 isolates, 29 Bacillus belonging to the species of B. cereus, Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus licheniformis and Bacillus pumilus showed haemolysis on blood agar. Using RPLA, enterotoxin production was detected for three isolates of B. cereus in broth and all B. cereus (9) in fermented seeds. Using BDEVIA, enterotoxin production was detected in broth as well as in fermented seeds for all B. cereus isolates. None of the isolates belonging to the other Bacillus species was able to produce enterotoxins either by RPLA or BDEVIA. Nhe genes were detected in all B. cereus while Hbl and CytK genes were detected respectively in five and six B. cereus strains. A weak presence of Hbl (A, D) and CytK genes was detected in two isolates of B. subtilis and one of B. licheniformis but results were inconsistent, especially for Hbl genes. The emetic specific gene fragment EM1 was not detected in any of the isolates studied. PMID:18474404

  8. Perceptual and acoustic evidence for species-level differences in meow vocalizations by domestic cats (Felis catus) and African wild cats (Felis silvestris lybica).

    PubMed

    Nicastro, Nicholas

    2004-09-01

    To test for possible anthropogenic selection effects on meows in domestic felids, vocalizations by domestic cats (Felis catus) were compared with cries by their closest wild relative, the African wild cat (Felis silvestris lybica). Comparisons included analysis of acoustic characteristics and perceptual studies with human (Homo sapiens) listeners. The perceptual studies obtained human listener ratings of call pleasantness. Both the acoustic and perceptual comparisons revealed clear species-level differences: The domestic cat meows were significantly shorter in mean duration than the wild cat meows, showed higher mean formant frequencies, and exhibited higher mean fundamental frequencies. Human listeners at all levels of experience and affinity for cats rated domestic cat meows as far more pleasant sounding than wild cat vocalizations. These results are consistent with a model of cat domestication that posits selective pressure on meows based on human perceptual biases. PMID:15482056

  9. Medieval emergence of sweet melons, Cucumis melo (Cucurbitaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Paris, Harry S.; Amar, Zohar; Lev, Efraim

    2012-01-01

    Background Sweet melons, Cucumis melo, are a widely grown and highly prized crop. While melons were familiar in antiquity, they were grown mostly for use of the young fruits, which are similar in appearance and taste to cucumbers, C. sativus. The time and place of emergence of sweet melons is obscure, but they are generally thought to have reached Europe from the east near the end of the 15th century. The objective of the present work was to determine where and when truly sweet melons were first developed. Methods Given their large size and sweetness, melons are often confounded with watermelons, Citrullus lanatus, so a list was prepared of the characteristics distinguishing between them. An extensive search of literature from the Roman and medieval periods was conducted and the findings were considered in their context against this list and particularly in regard to the use of the word ‘melon’ and of adjectives for sweetness and colour. Findings Medieval lexicographies and an illustrated Arabic translation of Dioscorides' herbal suggest that sweet melons were present in Central Asia in the mid-9th century. A travelogue description indicates the presence of sweet melons in Khorasan and Persia by the mid-10th century. Agricultural literature from Andalusia documents the growing of sweet melons, evidently casabas (Inodorous Group), there by the second half of the 11th century, which probably arrived from Central Asia as a consequence of Islamic conquest, trade and agricultural development. Climate and geopolitical boundaries were the likely causes of the delay in the spread of sweet melons into the rest of Europe. PMID:22648880

  10. African bees to control African elephants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vollrath, Fritz; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain

    2002-11-01

    Numbers of elephants have declined in Africa and Asia over the past 30 years while numbers of humans have increased, both substantially. Friction between these two keystone species is reaching levels which are worryingly high from an ecological as well as a political viewpoint. Ways and means must be found to keep the two apart, at least in areas sensitive to each species' survival. The aggressive African bee might be one such method. Here we demonstrate that African bees deter elephants from damaging the vegetation and trees which house their hives. We argue that bees can be employed profitably to protect not only selected trees, but also selected areas, from elephant damage.

  11. Crotalarieae and Genisteae of the South African Great Escarpment are nodulated by novel Bradyrhizobium species with unique and diverse symbiotic loci.

    PubMed

    Beukes, Chrizelle W; Stępkowski, Tomasz; Venter, Stephanus N; Cłapa, Tomasz; Phalane, Francina L; le Roux, Marianne M; Steenkamp, Emma T

    2016-07-01

    The genus Bradyrhizobium contains predominantly nitrogen-fixing legume symbionts. Phylogenetic analysis of the genes responsible for their symbiotic abilities (i.e., those encoded on the nodulation [nod] and nitrogen-fixation [nif] loci) has facilitated the development of an extensive phylogeographic framework for the genus. This framework however contains only a few nodulating isolates from Africa. Here we focused on nodulating Bradyrhizobium isolates associated with native southern African legumes in the tribes Genisteae and Crotalarieae found along the Great Escarpment in the Mpumalanga Province of South Africa. The aims of this study were to: (1) obtain rhizobial isolates from legumes in the Genisteae and Crotalarieae; (2) verify their nodulation ability; (3) characterize them to species level based on phylogenetic analyses of several protein coding gene regions (atpD, dnaK, glnII, recA, rpoB and gyrB) and (4) determine their placement in the phylogeographic framework inferred from the sequences of the symbiotic loci nodA and nifD. Twenty of the 21 Bradyrhizobium isolates belonged to six novel species, while one was conspecific with the recently described B. arachidis. Among these isolates, the nodA phylogeny revealed several new clades, with 18 of our isolates found in Clades XIV and XV, and only three forming part of the cosmopolitan Clade III. These strains formed predominantly the same groups in the nifD phylogeny although with slight differences; indicating that both vertical and horizontal inheritance of the symbiotic loci occurred. These findings suggest that the largely unexplored diversity of indigenous African rhizobia are characterized by unique ancestries that might mirror the distribution of their hosts and the environmental factors driving their evolution. PMID:27068839

  12. Muhaka icipeins, an enigmatic new genus and species of Kleidotomini (Hymenoptera: Figitidae: Eucoilinae) from an East African coastal forest

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A remarkable new eucoiline genus and species, Muhaka icipeins, is described herein. The genus is clearly a Kleidotomini, but is distinguished from other genera in the tribe by the unique head and scutellar morphology of Muhaka. The genus belongs to the ‘wedge-head’-syndrome group of species that, ...

  13. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna

    PubMed Central

    Zwerts, J. A.; Prins, H. H. T.; Bomhoff, D.; Verhagen, I.; Swart, J. M.; de Boer, W. F.

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of grazing lawns. We conducted a series of common garden experiments to test the effect of nutrients on interspecific competition between a typical lawn-forming grass species (Cynodon dactylon) and a species that is frequently found outside grazing lawns (Hyparrhenia hirta), and tested for the effect of herbivore disturbance in the form of trampling and clipping. We also performed a vegetation and herbivore survey to apply experimentally derived insights to field observations. Our results showed that interspecific competition was not affected by soil nutrient concentrations. C. dactylon did show much more resilience to disturbance than H. hirta, presumably due to the regenerative capacity of its rhizomes. Results from the field survey were in line with these findings, describing a correlation between herbivore pressure and C. dactylon abundance. We conclude that herbivore disturbance, and not soil nutrients, provide C. dactylon with a competitive advantage over H. hirta, due to vegetative regeneration from its rhizomes. This provides evidence for the importance of concentrated, high herbivore densities for the creation and maintenance of grazing lawns. PMID:26510157

  14. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna.

    PubMed

    Zwerts, J A; Prins, H H T; Bomhoff, D; Verhagen, I; Swart, J M; de Boer, W F

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of grazing lawns. We conducted a series of common garden experiments to test the effect of nutrients on interspecific competition between a typical lawn-forming grass species (Cynodon dactylon) and a species that is frequently found outside grazing lawns (Hyparrhenia hirta), and tested for the effect of herbivore disturbance in the form of trampling and clipping. We also performed a vegetation and herbivore survey to apply experimentally derived insights to field observations. Our results showed that interspecific competition was not affected by soil nutrient concentrations. C. dactylon did show much more resilience to disturbance than H. hirta, presumably due to the regenerative capacity of its rhizomes. Results from the field survey were in line with these findings, describing a correlation between herbivore pressure and C. dactylon abundance. We conclude that herbivore disturbance, and not soil nutrients, provide C. dactylon with a competitive advantage over H. hirta, due to vegetative regeneration from its rhizomes. This provides evidence for the importance of concentrated, high herbivore densities for the creation and maintenance of grazing lawns. PMID:26510157

  15. A comparative evaluation of PCR- based methods for species- specific determination of African animal trypanosomes in Ugandan cattle

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In recent years, PCR has been become widely applied for the detection of trypanosomes overcoming many of the constraints of parasitological and serological techniques, being highly sensitive and specific for trypanosome detection. Individual species-specific multi-copy trypanosome DNA sequences can be targeted to identify parasites. Highly conserved ribosomal RNA (rRNA) genes are also useful for comparisons between closely related species. The internal transcribed spacer regions (ITS) in particular are relatively small, show variability among related species and are flanked by highly conserved segments to which PCR primers can be designed. Individual variations in inter-species length makes the ITS region a useful marker for identification of multiple trypanosome species within a sample. Methods Six hundred blood samples from cattle collected in Uganda on FTA cards were screened using individual species-specific primers for Trypanosoma congolense, Trypanosoma brucei and Trypanosoma vivax and compared to a modified (using eluate extracted using chelex) ITS-PCR reaction. Results The comparative analysis showed that the species-specific primer sets showed poor agreement with the ITS primer set. Using species-specific PCR for Trypanozoon, a prevalence of 10.5% was observed as compared to 0.2% using ITS PCR (Kappa = 0.03). For Trypanosoma congolense, the species-specific PCR reaction indicated a prevalence of 0% compared to 2.2% using ITS PCR (Kappa = 0). For T. vivax, species-specific PCR detected prevalence of 5.7% compared to 2.8% for ITS PCR (Kappa = 0.29). Conclusions When selecting PCR based tools to apply to epidemiological surveys for generation of prevalence data for animal trypanosomiasis, it is recommended that species-specific primers are used, being the most sensitive diagnostic tool for screening samples to identify members of Trypanozoon (T. b. brucei s.l). While ITS primers are useful for studying the prevalence of trypanosomes

  16. Multispectral fluorescence imaging technique for discrimination of cucumber (Cucumis Sativus) seed viability

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In this study, we developed a nondestructive method for discriminating viable cucumber (Cucumis sativus) seeds based on hyperspectral fluorescence imaging. The fluorescence spectra of cucumber seeds in the 420–700 nm range were extracted from hyperspectral fluorescence images obtained using 365 nm u...

  17. Histological Aspects of Cucumis melo PI 313970 Resistance to Podosphaera xanthii and Golovinomyces cichoracearum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumis melo accession PI 313970 possesses numerous genes for race-specific resistance to powdery mildew incited by Podosphaera xanthi, but it also exhibits non-race-specific, resistant blister leaf reactions in California, U.S.A. to several races of P. xanthii. Light microscopic examination confirm...

  18. Asynchronous meiosis in Cucumis hystrix-cucumber synthetic tetraploids resulting in low male fertility

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Wide hybridization is an important tool for crop improvement. Recently, we successfully developed a synthetic allotetraploid from interspecific cross between cucumber and its relative Cucumis hystrix-(2n = 2x =24) followed by chemical induction of chromosome doubling. The resulting allotetraploid wa...

  19. Spanish melons (Cucumis melo L.) of the Madrid provenance: A unique germplasm reservoir

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Melon (Cucumis melo L.) landraces of the Madrid provenance, Spain, have received national distinction for their high fruit quality and sensorial attributes. More specifically, a unique array of Group Inodorus landraces have been continuously cultivated and conserved by farmers in the municipality o...

  20. Branched-chain and aromatic amino acid catabolism into aroma volatiles in Cucumis melo L. fruit

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The unique aroma of melons (Cucumis melo L., Cucurbitaceae) is composed of many volatile compounds biosynthetically derived from fatty-acids, carotenoids, amino-acids as well as terpenes. Incubation of melon fruit cubes with amino- and a-keto acids led to the enhanced formation of aroma compounds be...

  1. Root-knot nematode resistance, yield, and fruit quality of specialty melons grafted onto cucumis metulifer

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Interest in specialty melons (Cucumis melo) with distinctive fruit characteristics has grown in the United States in recent years. However, disease management remains a major challenge in specialty melon production. In this study, grafting experiments were conducted to determine the effectiveness of...

  2. Inheritance of the Quantity of ß-carotene and Fruit Maturity of Melon (Cucumis Melon L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Melon (Cucumis melo L.) fruit production in U.S. can be improved through the introgression of early fruit maturity (FM) and the enhancement of fruit color [i.e., quantity of ß-carotene (QßC); orange fruit mesocarp]. However, the genetics of FM and QßC have not been clearly defined in U.S. Western Sh...

  3. Superoxide dismutase activity in mesocarp tissue from divergent Cucumis melo L. genotypes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) fruit matrix is unique among plant foods in being able to provide a protective medium in which the antioxidant activity of the enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD) is preserved during the digestive process, and therefore, being able to elicit in vivo pharmacological effects ...

  4. The MSC phenotype of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) - a method for production of plant mitochondrial mutants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The mosaic (MSC) mutants of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) appear after passage through cell cultures. The MSC phenotype shows paternal transmission and is associated with mitochondrial DNA rearrangements. This review describes the origins and phenotypes of independently produced MSC mutants of cuc...

  5. A golden SNP in CmOr governs fruit flesh color of melon (cucumis melo)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Melon (Cucumis melo) flesh color is genetically determined and can be white, light green or orange with B-carotene being the predominant pigment. We associated carotenoid accumulation in melon fruit flesh with polymorphism within CmOr, a homolog of the cauliflower BoOr gene, and identified CmOr as t...

  6. Turkmenistan Melon (Cucumis melo), and Watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) Germplasm Expedition 2008.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Turkmenistan has a rich tradition of melon (Cucumis melo L.) and watermelon (Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum. & Nakai) production, but like in many countries land races and old varieties are in danger of genetic erosion. In July-August 2008, a collaborative Turkmenistan–United States germplasm exp...

  7. Length and Rapid Elongation of Pedicels of the Female Flowers of Cucumis anguria L.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This report summarizes observations on the length and growth of pedicels of pollinated and unpollinated female flowers of Cucumis anguria var. anguria and C. anguria var. longaculeatus. These observations were conducted on six germplasm accessions of C. anguria conserved by the USDA-ARS North Centr...

  8. An Extended Intervarietal Microsatellite Linkage Map of Cucumber, Cucumis Sativus L

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A recombinant inbred line (RIL) population derived from two cultivated cucumber (Cucumis sativus var. sativus L., 2n = 2x = 14) lines Gy-7 (synom. G421) and H-19 was previously utilized to map yield and fruit quality components. However, that map consisted mainly of dominant markers (i.e., AFLPs and...

  9. SEQUENCING OF CUCUMBER (CUCUMIS SATIVUS L.) CHLOROPLAST GENOMES IDENTIFIES PUTATIVE CANDIDATE GENES FOR CHILLING TOLERANCE

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Chilling injury in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) is conditioned by maternal factors and the sequencing of its chloroplast (cp) genome could lead to the identification of economically important candidate genes. Complete sequencing of cucumber cpDNA was facilitated by the development of 414 consensus...

  10. Putative paternal factors controlling chilling tolerance in Korean market-type cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Chilling temperatures (<10 degrees C) may cause damage to Korean market-type cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) plants during winter and early spring growing seasons. Inheritance to chilling in U.S. processing cucumber is controlled by cytoplasmic (maternally) and nuclear factors. To understand inherit...

  11. Fine genetic mapping of a locus controlling short internode length in melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Compact and dwarfing vining habits in melon (Cucumis melo L.; 2n = 2x = 24) may have commercial importance since they can contribute to the promotion of concentrated fruit set and can be planted in higher plant densities than standard vining types. A diminutive (dwarf) melon mutant line (PNU-D1) wi...

  12. Determination of germination quality of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) seed by LED-induced hyperspectral reflectance imaging

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Purpose: We developed a viability evaluation method for cucumber (Cucumis sativus) seed using hyperspectral reflectance imaging. Methods: Reflectance spectra of cucumber seeds in the 400 to 1000 nm range were collected from hyperspectral reflectance images obtained using blue, green, and red LED ill...

  13. Regionally-defined niche-breadth of tropical African freshwater plant species predicts their global latitudinal range

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kennedy, Michael; Lang, Pauline; Tapia-Grimaldo, Julissa; Varandas-Martins, Sara; Bruce, Allanah; Moore, Isabel; Sichingabula, Henry; Bottino, Flávia; Murphy, Kevin

    2016-04-01

    This study tested the hypothesis that the measured niche-breadth of river plant species (macrophytes) occurring within a closely-defined geographical area in southern tropical Africa (Zambia), may predict the larger-scale biogeographical range of these species. Two measures of niche-breadth were calculated for 44 riverine macrophyte species commonly occurring in Zambia, using an approach based on PCA ordination with bio-physico-chemical ordination input variables: altitude, stream order, stream flow, pH, conductivity, soluble reactive phosphate concentration (SRP), benthic macroinvertebrate Average Score per Taxon (ASPT), and individual abundance of nine benthic macroinvertebrate families showing differing water quality tolerance, as indicated by their Sensitivity Weightings within the Zambian Invertebrate Scoring System (ZISS). Macrophyte large-scale latitudinal range was derived from world geopositional records held by online databases, supplemented by records held by the authors. The two niche-breadth metrics divided the species into narrow-niche and intermediate/broad-niche categories, showing significant variation in altitude, stream flow, conductivity, SRP and ASPT, but not stream order or pH. There was no evidence to suggest that macrophyte alpha-diversity (as a measure of number of individual niches that may co-exist in a given habitat) showed any significant relationship with individual species niche-breadth. However, macrophyte alpha-diversity was significantly positively correlated with altitude, and significantly negatively related to conductivity, pH, ASPT, SRP, stream flow, and stream order. Narrow-niche macrophyte species included a higher proportion of Afrotropical endemics than did species with broader niche size. There were significant predictive relationships between macrophyte niche breadth and latitudinal range of the target species at global and Afrotropical scales, but not for the Neotropical range of species which occurred in both the

  14. Molecular identification and safety of Bacillus species involved in the fermentation of African oil beans (Pentaclethra macrophylla Benth) for production of Ugba.

    PubMed

    Ahaotu, I; Anyogu, A; Njoku, O H; Odu, N N; Sutherland, J P; Ouoba, L I I

    2013-03-01

    Molecular identification of Bacillus spp. involved in the fermentation of African oil bean seeds for production of Ugba, as well as ability of the Bacillus spp. isolated to produce toxins, were investigated. Forty-nine bacteria were isolated from Ugba produced in different areas of South Eastern Nigeria and identified by phenotyping and sequencing of 16S rRNA, gyrB and rpoB genes. Genotypic diversities at interspecies and intraspecies level of the isolates were screened by PCR amplification of the 16S-23S rDNA intergenic transcribed spacer (ITS-PCR) and repetitive sequence-based PCR (rep-PCR). The ability of the bacteria to produce toxins was also investigated by detection of genes encoding production of haemolysin BL (HblA, HblC, HblD), non-haemolytic enterotoxin (NheA, NheB, NheC), cytotoxin K (CytK) and emetic toxin (EM1) using PCR with specific primers. Moreover, a Bacillus cereus Enterotoxin Reverse Passive Latex Agglutination test kit (BCET-RPLA) was used to screen ability of the isolates to produce haemolysin in broth and during fermentation of African oil bean seeds. The isolates were characterized as motile, rod-shaped, endospore forming, catalase positive, Gram-positive bacteria. They were identified as Bacillus cereus sensu lato (42), Lysinibacillus xylanilyticus (3), Bacillus clausii (1), Bacillus licheniformis (1), Bacillus subtilis (1), and Bacillus safensis (1). B. cereus was the predominant Bacillus species and was present in all samples studied. Using ITS-PCR, interspecies diversity was observed among isolates, with six clusters representing each of the pre-cited species. Rep-PCR was more discriminatory (eight clusters) and allowed further differentiation at intraspecies level for the B. cereus and L. xylanilyticus isolates with two genotypes for each species. Genes encoding production of non-haemolytic enterotoxin (NheA, NheB, NheC) and cytotoxin K (CytK) genes were detected in all B. cereus isolates, while Hbl genes (HblA, HblC, HblD) were

  15. Wood Specific Gravity Variations and Biomass of Central African Tree Species: The Simple Choice of the Outer Wood

    PubMed Central

    Bastin, Jean-François; Fayolle, Adeline; Tarelkin, Yegor; Van den Bulcke, Jan; de Haulleville, Thales; Mortier, Frederic; Beeckman, Hans; Van Acker, Joris; Serckx, Adeline; Bogaert, Jan; De Cannière, Charles

    2015-01-01

    Context Wood specific gravity is a key element in tropical forest ecology. It integrates many aspects of tree mechanical properties and functioning and is an important predictor of tree biomass. Wood specific gravity varies widely among and within species and also within individual trees. Notably, contrasted patterns of radial variation of wood specific gravity have been demonstrated and related to regeneration guilds (light demanding vs. shade-bearing). However, although being repeatedly invoked as a potential source of error when estimating the biomass of trees, both intraspecific and radial variations remain little studied. In this study we characterized detailed pith-to-bark wood specific gravity profiles among contrasted species prominently contributing to the biomass of the forest, i.e., the dominant species, and we quantified the consequences of such variations on the biomass. Methods Radial profiles of wood density at 8% moisture content were compiled for 14 dominant species in the Democratic Republic of Congo, adapting a unique 3D X-ray scanning technique at very high spatial resolution on core samples. Mean wood density estimates were validated by water displacement measurements. Wood density profiles were converted to wood specific gravity and linear mixed models were used to decompose the radial variance. Potential errors in biomass estimation were assessed by comparing the biomass estimated from the wood specific gravity measured from pith-to-bark profiles, from global repositories, and from partial information (outer wood or inner wood). Results Wood specific gravity profiles from pith-to-bark presented positive, neutral and negative trends. Positive trends mainly characterized light-demanding species, increasing up to 1.8 g.cm-3 per meter for Piptadeniastrum africanum, and negative trends characterized shade-bearing species, decreasing up to 1 g.cm-3 per meter for Strombosia pustulata. The linear mixed model showed the greater part of wood specific

  16. Genome-Wide Identification and Characterization of R2R3MYB Family in Cucumis sativus

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qiang; Zhang, Cunjia; Li, Jing; Wang, Lina; Ren, Zhonghai

    2012-01-01

    Background The R2R3MYB proteins comprise one of the largest families of transcription factors in plants. Although genome-wide analysis of this family has been carried out in some species, little is known about R2R3MYB genes in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). Principal Findings This study has identified 55 R2R3MYB genes in the latest cucumber genome and the CsR2R3MYB family contained the smallest number of identified genes compared to other species that have been studied due to the absence of recent gene duplication events. These results were also supported by genome distribution and gene duplication analysis. Phylogenetic analysis showed that they could be classified into 11 subgroups. The evolutionary relationships and the intron - exon organizations that showed similarities with Arabidopsis, Vitis and Glycine R2R3MYB proteins were also analyzed and suggested strong gene conservation but also the expansions of particular functional genes during the evolution of the plant species. In addition, we found that 8 out of 55 (∼14.54%) cucumber R2R3MYB genes underwent alternative splicing events, producing a variety of transcripts from a single gene, which illustrated the extremely high complexity of transcriptome regulation. Tissue-specific expression profiles showed that 50 cucumber R2R3MYB genes were expressed in at least one of the tissues and the other 5 genes showed very low expression in all tissues tested, which suggested that cucumber R2R3MYB genes took part in many cellular processes. The transcript abundance level analysis during abiotic conditions (NaCl, ABA and low temperature treatments) identified a group of R2R3MYB genes that responded to one or more treatments. Conclusions This study has produced a comparative genomics analysis of the cucumber R2R3MYB gene family and has provided the first steps towards the selection of CsR2R3MYB genes for cloning and functional dissection that can be used in further studies to uncover their roles in cucumber growth and

  17. Documenting biogeographical patterns of African timber species using herbarium records: a conservation perspective based on native trees from Angola.

    PubMed

    Romeiras, Maria M; Figueira, Rui; Duarte, Maria Cristina; Beja, Pedro; Darbyshire, Iain

    2014-01-01

    In many tropical regions the development of informed conservation strategies is hindered by a dearth of biodiversity information. Biological collections can help to overcome this problem, by providing baseline information to guide research and conservation efforts. This study focuses on the timber trees of Angola, combining herbarium (2670 records) and bibliographic data to identify the main timber species, document biogeographic patterns and identify conservation priorities. The study recognized 18 key species, most of which are threatened or near-threatened globally, or lack formal conservation assessments. Biogeographical analysis reveals three groups of species associated with the enclave of Cabinda and northwest Angola, which occur primarily in Guineo-Congolian rainforests, and evergreen forests and woodlands. The fourth group is widespread across the country, and is mostly associated with dry forests. There is little correspondence between the spatial pattern of species groups and the ecoregions adopted by WWF, suggesting that these may not provide an adequate basis for conservation planning for Angolan timber trees. Eight of the species evaluated should be given high conservation priority since they are of global conservation concern, they have very restricted distributions in Angola, their historical collection localities are largely outside protected areas and they may be under increasing logging pressure. High conservation priority was also attributed to another three species that have a large proportion of their global range concentrated in Angola and that occur in dry forests where deforestation rates are high. Our results suggest that timber tree species in Angola may be under increasing risk, thus calling for efforts to promote their conservation and sustainable exploitation. The study also highlights the importance of studying historic herbarium collections in poorly explored regions of the tropics, though new field surveys remain a priority to

  18. Documenting Biogeographical Patterns of African Timber Species Using Herbarium Records: A Conservation Perspective Based on Native Trees from Angola

    PubMed Central

    Romeiras, Maria M.; Figueira, Rui; Duarte, Maria Cristina; Beja, Pedro; Darbyshire, Iain

    2014-01-01

    In many tropical regions the development of informed conservation strategies is hindered by a dearth of biodiversity information. Biological collections can help to overcome this problem, by providing baseline information to guide research and conservation efforts. This study focuses on the timber trees of Angola, combining herbarium (2670 records) and bibliographic data to identify the main timber species, document biogeographic patterns and identify conservation priorities. The study recognized 18 key species, most of which are threatened or near-threatened globally, or lack formal conservation assessments. Biogeographical analysis reveals three groups of species associated with the enclave of Cabinda and northwest Angola, which occur primarily in Guineo-Congolian rainforests, and evergreen forests and woodlands. The fourth group is widespread across the country, and is mostly associated with dry forests. There is little correspondence between the spatial pattern of species groups and the ecoregions adopted by WWF, suggesting that these may not provide an adequate basis for conservation planning for Angolan timber trees. Eight of the species evaluated should be given high conservation priority since they are of global conservation concern, they have very restricted distributions in Angola, their historical collection localities are largely outside protected areas and they may be under increasing logging pressure. High conservation priority was also attributed to another three species that have a large proportion of their global range concentrated in Angola and that occur in dry forests where deforestation rates are high. Our results suggest that timber tree species in Angola may be under increasing risk, thus calling for efforts to promote their conservation and sustainable exploitation. The study also highlights the importance of studying historic herbarium collections in poorly explored regions of the tropics, though new field surveys remain a priority to

  19. Climate change sensitivity of the African ivory nut palm, Hyphaene petersiana Klotzsch ex Mart. (Arecaceae) - a keystone species in SE Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blach-Overgaard, A.; Svenning, J.-C.; Balslev, H.

    2009-11-01

    Africa is the most vulnerable continent to future climate change. Profound changes are projected for southwestern Africa with increased drying, notably with delayed onset of the rainy season in September-November, and temperature increases in all seasons. The projected climate changes combined with land-use changes are thought to constitute the main threats to biodiversity in the 21st century. To be able to predict the potential impact on biodiversity, it is crucial to achieve a better insight into the controls of contemporary species ranges. Using species distribution modeling, we assessed the climate sensitivity of the key-stone palm species Hyphaene petersiana (African ivory nut palm) in southern Africa. We tested the relative roles of climate vs. non-climatic range-controls and found that climate had a clear effect on the range of H. petersiana and that especially water-related variables (annual precipitation and precipitation driest quarter) were of high importance. Nevertheless, latitude was the overall most dominant variable, reflecting spatial constraints on the continental-scale distribution. Of the remaining non-climatic factors, soil type and human influence were as important as the climatic factors. A future decrease in annual precipitation below 400 mm and hydrological changes towards drier conditions could cause a dramatic decline in H. petersiana populations, while the influence of temperature changes is less clear. The ongoing, unsustainable utilization pressures on this palm species by humans and livestock are likely to exacerbate the negative effect of future climate changes on its populations, especially, given the expected human population increase in Africa.

  20. Sampling strategies and variability in fruit pulp micronutrient contents of west and central african bananas and plantains (Musa species).

    PubMed

    Davey, Mark W; Stals, Ellen; Ngoh-Newilah, Gérard; Tomekpe, Kodjo; Lusty, Charlotte; Markham, Richard; Swennen, Rony; Keulemans, Johan

    2007-04-01

    The variability in fruit micronutrient contents in a selection of Central and West African Musa varieties cultivated under standardized field conditions was studied. Analysis of the within-fruit, within-hand, and within-plant as well as the between-plant variations demonstrated that both provitamin A carotenoids (pVACs) and mineral micronutrient (Fe, Zn) contents vary significantly across all sample groups. The variations in pVACs contents appear to be at least partly related to differences in the developmental status of the fruit, but the observed trends were genotype-specific. The mean pVACs concentrations per genotype indicated that there is substantial genetic variation in the fruit pVACs contents between Musa cultivars, with orange-fleshed plantain varieties (AAB) having generally higher fruit pVACs contents than dessert bananas (AAA). It was not possible to identify consistent trends between the sampling position and fruit Fe/Zn contents. Once the within-bunch micronutrient variability has been accounted for, the mean variations in fruit micronutrient contents between individual plants of a variety generally fell to within acceptable limits. Results are discussed within the framework of standardizing sampling and developing strategies to screen for the nutritional values of new and existing Musa varieties. PMID:17346062

  1. Cucumis monosomic alien addition lines: morphological, cytological, and genotypic analyses.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jin-Feng; Luo, Xiang-Dong; Qian, Chun-Tao; Jahn, Molly M; Staub, Jack E; Zhuang, Fei-Yun; Lou, Qun-Feng; Ren, Gang

    2004-05-01

    Cucumis hystrix Chakr. (HH, 2n=24), a wild relative of the cultivated cucumber, possesses several potentially valuable disease-resistance and abiotic stress-tolerance traits for cucumber ( C. sativus L., CC, 2n=14) improvement. Numerous attempts have been made to transfer desirable traits since the successful interspecific hybridization between C. hystrix and C. sativus, one of which resulted in the production of an allotriploid (HCC, 2n=26: one genome of C. hystrix and two of C. sativus). When this genotype was treated with colchicine to induce polyploidy, two monosomic alien addition lines (MAALs) (plant nos. 87 and 517: 14 CC+1 H, 2n=15) were recovered among 252 viable plants. Each of these plants was morphologically distinct from allotriploids and cultivated cucumbers. Cytogenetic and molecular marker analyses were performed to confirm the genetic constitution and further characterize these two MAALs. Chromosome counts made from at least 30 meristematic cells from each plant confirmed 15 nuclear chromosomes. In pollen mother cells of plant nos. 87 and 517, seven bivalents and one univalent were observed at diakinesis and metaphase I; the frequency of trivalent formation was low (about 4-5%). At anaphase I and II, stochastic and asymmetric division led to the formation of two gamete classes: n=7 and n=8; however, pollen fertility was relatively high. Pollen stainability in plant no. 87 was 86.7% and in plant no. 517 was 93.2%. Random amplified polymorphic DNA analysis was performed using 100 random 10-base primers. Genotypes obtained with eight primers (A-9, A-11, AH-13, AI-19, AJ-18, AJ-20, E-19, and N-20) showed a band common to the two MAAL plants and C. hystrix that was absent in C. sativus, confirming that the alien chromosomes present in the MAALs were derived from C. hystrix. Morphological differences and differences in banding patterns were also observed between plant nos. 87 and 517 after amplification with primers AI-5, AJ-13, N-12, and N-20

  2. Immature stages and ecology of two species of the South African genus Stripsipher Gory & Percheron, 1833 (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae, Cetoniinae, Trichiini)

    PubMed Central

    Šípek, Petr; Ricchiardi, Enrico; Perissinotto, Renzo

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Based on the study of newly accessible type material, Stripsipher drakensbergi Ricchiardi, 1998, is demoted to a junior synonym of Stripsipher jansoni Péringuey, 1908. The genus Stripsipher Gory & Percheron, 1833, thus, currently includes 12 species, but for none of these are larval stages and/or pupae currently known. The immature stages of Stripsipher orientalis Ricchiardi, 2008 and Stripsipher jansoni are described here for the first time and updated observations on distribution and ecology of both species are provided. Morphological affinities of Stripsipher with other Trichiini larvae are presented and the main diagnostic differences discussed. The larvae of both species are very similar to those of other representatives of the tribe Trichiini, with key differences found on the epipharynx. Based on the morphology of larvae and adults, it is suggested that Stripsipher is a member of the clade composed of Valgini, Trichiini and Cryptodontini. PMID:22539904

  3. Termites in the hominin diet: a meta-analysis of termite genera, species and castes as a dietary supplement for South African robust australopithecines.

    PubMed

    Lesnik, Julie J

    2014-06-01

    Termite foraging by chimpanzees and present-day modern humans is a well-documented phenomenon, making it a plausible hypothesis that early hominins were also utilizing this resource. Hominin termite foraging has been credited by some to be the explanation for the unexpected carbon isotope signatures present in South African hominin teeth, which suggest the diet was different from that of extant non-human great apes, consisting of a significant amount of resources that are not from woody-plants. Grass-eating termites are one potential resource that could contribute to the carbon signature. However, not all termites eat grasses, and in fact, the termites that are most widely consumed by chimpanzees and by many present-day human populations at best have a mixed diet that includes small amounts of grasses. Here I review the ecology of termites and how it affects their desirability as a food resource for hominins, and conduct a meta-analysis of nutritional values for various genera, species and castes from the literature. Termites are very diverse, even within species, and this variability affects both their carbon signatures and nutritional value, hindering generalizations regarding the contribution of termites to the hominin diet. It is concluded here that a combination of soldiers and alates of the genus Macrotermes be used to model the insectivory component of the Plio-Pleistocene hominin diet due to their significant amounts of energy-yielding nutrients and potential role as a critical resource for supporting larger-brained hominins. PMID:24613098

  4. Living in biological soil crust communities of African deserts-Physiological traits of green algal Klebsormidium species (Streptophyta) to cope with desiccation, light and temperature gradients.

    PubMed

    Karsten, Ulf; Herburger, Klaus; Holzinger, Andreas

    2016-05-01

    Green algae of the genus Klebsormidium (Klebsormidiales, Streptophyta) are typical members of biological soil crusts (BSCs) worldwide. The phylogeny and ecophysiology of Klebsormidium has been intensively studied in recent years, and a new lineage called superclade G, which was isolated from BSCs in arid southern Africa and comprising undescribed species, was reported. Three different African strains, that have previously been isolated from hot-desert BSCs and molecular-taxonomically characterized, were comparatively investigated. In addition, Klebsormidium subtilissimum from a cold-desert habitat (Alaska, USA, superclade E) was included in the study as well. Photosynthetic performance was measured under different controlled abiotic conditions, including dehydration and rehydration, as well as under a light and temperature gradient. All Klebsormidium strains exhibited optimum photosynthetic oxygen production at low photon fluence rates, but with no indication of photoinhibition under high light conditions pointing to flexible acclimation mechanisms of the photosynthetic apparatus. Respiration under lower temperatures was generally much less effective than photosynthesis, while the opposite was true for higher temperatures. The Klebsormidium strains tested showed a decrease and inhibition of the effective quantum yield during desiccation, however with different kinetics. While the single celled and small filamentous strains exhibited relatively fast inhibition, the uniserate filament forming isolates desiccated slower. Except one, all other strains fully recovered effective quantum yield after rehydration. The presented data provide an explanation for the regular occurrence of Klebsormidium strains or species in hot and cold deserts, which are characterized by low water availability and other stressful conditions. PMID:26422081

  5. Living in biological soil crust communities of African deserts—Physiological traits of green algal Klebsormidium species (Streptophyta) to cope with desiccation, light and temperature gradients

    PubMed Central

    Karsten, Ulf; Herburger, Klaus; Holzinger, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    Green algae of the genus Klebsormidium (Klebsormidiales, Streptophyta) are typical members of biological soil crusts (BSCs) worldwide. The phylogeny and ecophysiology of Klebsormidium has been intensively studied in recent years, and a new lineage called superclade G, which was isolated from BSCs in arid southern Africa and comprising undescribed species, was reported. Three different African strains, that have previously been isolated from hot-desert BSCs and molecular-taxonomically characterized, were comparatively investigated. In addition, Klebsormidium subtilissimum from a cold-desert habitat (Alaska, USA, superclade E) was included in the study as well. Photosynthetic performance was measured under different controlled abiotic conditions, including dehydration and rehydration, as well as under a light and temperature gradient. All Klebsormidium strains exhibited optimum photosynthetic oxygen production at low photon fluence rates, but with no indication of photoinhibition under high light conditions pointing to flexible acclimation mechanisms of the photosynthetic apparatus. Respiration under lower temperatures was generally much less effective than photosynthesis, while the opposite was true for higher temperatures. The Klebsormidium strains tested showed a decrease and inhibition of the effective quantum yield during desiccation, however with different kinetics. While the single celled and small filamentous strains exhibited relatively fast inhibition, the uniserate filament forming isolates desiccated slower. Except one, all other strains fully recovered effective quantum yield after rehydration. The presented data provide an explanation for the regular occurrence of Klebsormidium strains or species in hot and cold deserts, which are characterized by low water availability and other stressful conditions. PMID:26422081

  6. Trypanosoma livingstonei: a new species from African bats supports the bat seeding hypothesis for the Trypanosoma cruzi clade

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Bat trypanosomes have been implicated in the evolutionary history of the T. cruzi clade, which comprises species from a wide geographic and host range in South America, Africa and Europe, including bat-restricted species and the generalist agents of human American trypanosomosis T. cruzi and T. rangeli. Methods Trypanosomes from bats (Rhinolophus landeri and Hipposideros caffer) captured in Mozambique, southeast Africa, were isolated by hemoculture. Barcoding was carried out through the V7V8 region of Small Subunit (SSU) rRNA and Fluorescent Fragment Length barcoding (FFLB). Phylogenetic inferences were based on SSU rRNA, glyceraldehyde phosphate dehydrogenase (gGAPDH) and Spliced Leader (SL) genes. Morphological characterization included light, scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Results New trypanosomes from bats clustered together forming a clade basal to a larger assemblage called the T. cruzi clade. Barcoding, phylogenetic analyses and genetic distances based on SSU rRNA and gGAPDH supported these trypanosomes as a new species, which we named Trypanosoma livingstonei n. sp. The large and highly polymorphic SL gene repeats of this species showed a copy of the 5S ribosomal RNA into the intergenic region. Unique morphological (large and broad blood trypomastigotes compatible to species of the subgenus Megatrypanum and cultures showing highly pleomorphic epimastigotes and long and slender trypomastigotes) and ultrastructural (cytostome and reservosomes) features and growth behaviour (when co-cultivated with HeLa cells at 37°C differentiated into trypomastigotes resembling the blood forms and do not invaded the cells) complemented the description of this species. Conclusion Phylogenetic inferences supported the hypothesis that Trypanosoma livingstonei n. sp. diverged from a common ancestral bat trypanosome that evolved exclusively in Chiroptera or switched at independent opportunities to mammals of several orders forming the clade T. cruzi

  7. Evolutionary insights from bat trypanosomes: morphological, developmental and phylogenetic evidence of a new species, Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) erneyi sp. nov., in African bats closely related to Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) cruzi and allied species.

    PubMed

    Lima, Luciana; Silva, Flávia Maia da; Neves, Luis; Attias, Márcia; Takata, Carmen S A; Campaner, Marta; de Souza, Wanderley; Hamilton, Patrick B; Teixeira, Marta M G

    2012-11-01

    Parasites of the genus Trypanosoma are common in bats and those of the subgenus Schizotrypanum are restricted to bats throughout the world, with the exception of Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) cruzi that also infects other mammals and is restricted to the American Continent. We have characterized trypanosome isolates from Molossidae bats captured in Mozambique, Africa. Morphology and behaviour in culture, supported by phylogenetic inferences using SSU (small subunit) rRNA, gGAPDH (glycosomal glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase) and Cyt b (cytochrome b) genes, allowed to classify the isolates as a new Schizotrypanum species named Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) erneyi sp. nov. This is the first report of a Schizotrypanum species from African bats cultured, characterized morphologically and biologically, and positioned in phylogenetic trees. The unprecedented finding of a new species of the subgenus Schizotrypanum from Africa that is closest related to the America-restricted Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) cruzi marinkellei and T. cruzi provides new insights into the origin and evolutionary history of T. cruzi and closely related bat trypanosomes. Altogether, data from our study support the hypothesis of an ancestor trypanosome parasite of bats evolving to infect other mammals, even humans, and adapted to transmission by triatomine bugs in the evolutionary history of T. cruzi in the New World. PMID:22277804

  8. Chilling tolerant U.S. processing cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.): three advanced backcross and ten inbred backcross lines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental stresses such as chilling temperatures can reduce seed germination rate, seeding emergence rate, flower and fruit development, marketable yield, and postharvest fruit storage longevity in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). Chilling temperatures occur in unpredictable patterns, making it d...

  9. Detection of Papaya ringspot virus type W infecting the cucurbit weed Cucumis melo var. dudaim in Florida

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This is the first report of Papaya ringspot virus type W infecting Cucumis melo var. dudaim, a cucurbit weed, in Florida. It provides an overview of this virus reservoir for growers, extension workers, crop consultants and research and regulatory scientists....

  10. Snapshot Serengeti, high-frequency annotated camera trap images of 40 mammalian species in an African savanna.

    PubMed

    Swanson, Alexandra; Kosmala, Margaret; Lintott, Chris; Simpson, Robert; Smith, Arfon; Packer, Craig

    2015-01-01

    Camera traps can be used to address large-scale questions in community ecology by providing systematic data on an array of wide-ranging species. We deployed 225 camera traps across 1,125 km(2) in Serengeti National Park, Tanzania, to evaluate spatial and temporal inter-species dynamics. The cameras have operated continuously since 2010 and had accumulated 99,241 camera-trap days and produced 1.2 million sets of pictures by 2013. Members of the general public classified the images via the citizen-science website www.snapshotserengeti.org. Multiple users viewed each image and recorded the species, number of individuals, associated behaviours, and presence of young. Over 28,000 registered users contributed 10.8 million classifications. We applied a simple algorithm to aggregate these individual classifications into a final 'consensus' dataset, yielding a final classification for each image and a measure of agreement among individual answers. The consensus classifications and raw imagery provide an unparalleled opportunity to investigate multi-species dynamics in an intact ecosystem and a valuable resource for machine-learning and computer-vision research. PMID:26097743

  11. Near-infrared spectroscopy as a complementary age grading and species identification tool for African malaria vectors

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) was recently applied to age-grade and differentiate laboratory reared Anopheles gambiae sensu strico and Anopheles arabiensis sibling species of Anopheles gambiae sensu lato. In this study, we report further on the accuracy of this tool in simultaneously estimating ...

  12. Snapshot Serengeti, high-frequency annotated camera trap images of 40 mammalian species in an African savanna

    PubMed Central

    Swanson, Alexandra; Kosmala, Margaret; Lintott, Chris; Simpson, Robert; Smith, Arfon; Packer, Craig

    2015-01-01

    Camera traps can be used to address large-scale questions in community ecology by providing systematic data on an array of wide-ranging species. We deployed 225 camera traps across 1,125 km2 in Serengeti National Park, Tanzania, to evaluate spatial and temporal inter-species dynamics. The cameras have operated continuously since 2010 and had accumulated 99,241 camera-trap days and produced 1.2 million sets of pictures by 2013. Members of the general public classified the images via the citizen-science website www.snapshotserengeti.org. Multiple users viewed each image and recorded the species, number of individuals, associated behaviours, and presence of young. Over 28,000 registered users contributed 10.8 million classifications. We applied a simple algorithm to aggregate these individual classifications into a final ‘consensus’ dataset, yielding a final classification for each image and a measure of agreement among individual answers. The consensus classifications and raw imagery provide an unparalleled opportunity to investigate multi-species dynamics in an intact ecosystem and a valuable resource for machine-learning and computer-vision research. PMID:26097743

  13. Dispersal, dormancy and life-history tradeoffs at the individual, population and species levels in southern African Asteraceae.

    PubMed

    de Waal, Caroli; Anderson, Bruce; Ellis, Allan G

    2016-04-01

    Dispersal and dormancy are important risk-reducing strategies in unpredictable environments. Negative covariation between these strategies is theoretically expected, but empirical evidence is limited and inconsistent. Moreover, covariation may be affected by other life-history traits and may vary across levels of biological organization. We assessed dispersal (vertical fall time of fruits, a proxy for wind dispersal ability) and dormancy (germination fractions measured during germination trials) in populations of 15 annual and 12 perennial wind-dispersed species in six Asteraceae genera from South Africa. Dormancy was higher in annuals than in perennials, whereas fall time was largely determined by evolutionary history. Controlling for phylogeny, dispersal and dormancy was negatively associated across species and life-history categories. Negative covariation between dispersal and dormancy was not evident at either the individual level (except for seed heteromorphic species) or the population level. Our study provides rare empirical support for the theoretical expectation of tradeoffs between dormancy and the alternative risk-reducing strategies, perenniality and dispersal, but refutes the expectation of increased dispersability in perennials. Although negative covariation between dispersal and dormancy at the species level appears not to be a simple consequence of upscaling individual-level mechanistic tradeoffs, our findings suggest that selection for one strategy may constrain evolution of the other. PMID:26555320

  14. Standardizing visual control devices for tsetse flies: West African species Glossina tachinoides, G. palpalis gambiensis and G. morsitans submorsitans.

    PubMed

    Rayaisse, Jean-Baptiste; Kröber, Thomas; McMullin, Andrew; Solano, Philippe; Mihok, Steve; Guerin, Patrick M

    2012-01-01

    Here we describe field trials designed to standardize tools for the control of Glossina tachinoides, G. palpalis gambiensis and G.morsitans submorsitans in West Africa based on existing trap/target/bait technology. Blue and black biconical and monoconical traps and 1 m(2) targets were made in either phthalogen blue cotton, phthalogen blue cotton/polyester or turquoise blue polyester/viscose (all with a peak reflectance between 450-480 nm) and a black polyester. Because targets were covered in adhesive film, they proved to be significantly better trapping devices than either of the two trap types for all three species (up to 14 times more for G. tachinoides, 10 times more for G. palpalis gambiensis, and 6.5 times for G. morsitans submorsitans). The relative performance of the devices in the three blue cloths tested was the same when unbaited or baited with a mixture of phenols, 1-octen-3-ol and acetone. Since insecticide-impregnated devices act via contact with flies, we enumerated which device (traps or targets) served as the best object for flies to land on by also covering the cloth parts of traps with adhesive film. Despite the fact that the biconical trap proved to be the best landing device for the three species, the difference over the target (20-30%) was not significant. This experiment also allowed an estimation of trap efficiency, i.e. the proportion of flies landing on a trap that are caught in its cage. A low overall efficiency of the biconical or monoconical traps of between 11-24% was recorded for all three species. These results show that targets can be used as practical devices for population suppression of the three species studied. Biconical traps can be used for population monitoring, but a correction factor of 5-10 fold needs to be applied to captures to compensate for the poor trapping efficiency of this device for the three species. PMID:22348159

  15. Standardizing Visual Control Devices for Tsetse Flies: West African Species Glossina tachinoides, G. palpalis gambiensis and G. morsitans submorsitans

    PubMed Central

    Rayaisse, Jean-Baptiste; Kröber, Thomas; McMullin, Andrew; Solano, Philippe; Mihok, Steve; Guerin, Patrick M.

    2012-01-01

    Here we describe field trials designed to standardize tools for the control of Glossina tachinoides, G. palpalis gambiensis and G.morsitans submorsitans in West Africa based on existing trap/target/bait technology. Blue and black biconical and monoconical traps and 1 m2 targets were made in either phthalogen blue cotton, phthalogen blue cotton/polyester or turquoise blue polyester/viscose (all with a peak reflectance between 450–480 nm) and a black polyester. Because targets were covered in adhesive film, they proved to be significantly better trapping devices than either of the two trap types for all three species (up to 14 times more for G. tachinoides, 10 times more for G. palpalis gambiensis, and 6.5 times for G. morsitans submorsitans). The relative performance of the devices in the three blue cloths tested was the same when unbaited or baited with a mixture of phenols, 1-octen-3-ol and acetone. Since insecticide-impregnated devices act via contact with flies, we enumerated which device (traps or targets) served as the best object for flies to land on by also covering the cloth parts of traps with adhesive film. Despite the fact that the biconical trap proved to be the best landing device for the three species, the difference over the target (20–30%) was not significant. This experiment also allowed an estimation of trap efficiency, i.e. the proportion of flies landing on a trap that are caught in its cage. A low overall efficiency of the biconical or monoconical traps of between 11–24% was recorded for all three species. These results show that targets can be used as practical devices for population suppression of the three species studied. Biconical traps can be used for population monitoring, but a correction factor of 5–10 fold needs to be applied to captures to compensate for the poor trapping efficiency of this device for the three species. PMID:22348159

  16. Leaching characteristics of selected South African fly ashes: Effect of pH on the release of major and trace species

    SciTech Connect

    Gitari, W.M.; Fatoba, O.O.; Petrik, L.F.; Vadapalli, V.R.K.

    2009-07-01

    Fly ash samples from two South African coal-fired power stations were subjected to different leaching tests under alkaline and acidic conditions in an attempt to assess the effect of pH on the leachability of species from the fly ashes and also assess the potential impact of the fly ashes disposal on groundwater and the receiving environment. To achieve this, German Standard leaching (DIN-S4) and Acid Neutralization Capacity (ANC) tests were employed. Ca, Mg, Na, K and SO{sub 4} were significantly leached into solution under the two leaching conditions with the total amounts in ANC leachates higher than that of DIN-S4. This indicates that a large fraction of the soluble salts in unweathered fly ash are easily leached. These species represents the fraction that can be flushed off initially from the surface of ash particles on contacting the ash with water. The amounts of toxic trace elements such as As, Se, Cd, Cr and Pb leached out of the fly ashes when in contact with de-mineralized water (DIN-S4 test) were low and below the Target Water Quality Range (TWQR) of South Africa. This is explained by their low concentrations in the fly ashes and their solubility dependence on the pH of the leaching solution. However the amounts of some minor elements such as B, Mn, Fe, As and Se leached out at lower pH ranging between 10 to 4 (ANC test) were slightly higher than the TWQR, an indication that the pH of the leaching solution plays a significant role on the leaching of species in fly ash. The high concentrations of the toxic elements released from the fly ashes at lower pH gives an indication that the disposal of the fly ash could have adverse effects on the receiving environment if the pH of the solution contacting the ashes is not properly monitored.

  17. Limitation of seedling growth by potassium and magnesium supply for two ectomycorrhizal tree species of a Central African rain forest and its implication for their recruitment.

    PubMed

    Neba, Godlove Ambe; Newbery, David McClintock; Chuyong, George Bindeh

    2016-01-01

    In the ectomycorrhizal caesalpiniaceous groves of southern Korup National Park, the dominant tree species, Microberlinia bisulcata, displays very poor in situ recruitment compared with its codominant, Tetraberlinia bifoliolata. The reported ex situ experiment tested whether availabilities of soil potassium and magnesium play a role. Seedlings of the two species received applications of K and Mg fertilizer in potted native soil in a local shade house, and their responses in terms of growth and nutrient concentrations were recorded over 2 years. Amended soil concentrations were also determined. Microberlinia responded strongly and positively in its growth to Mg, but less to K; Tetraberlinia responded weakly to both. Added Mg led to strongly increased Mg concentration for Microberlinia while added K changed that concentration only slightly; Tetraberlinia strongly increased its concentration of K with added K, but only somewhat its Mg concentration with added Mg. Additions of Mg and K had small but important antagonistic effects. Microberlinia is Mg-demanding and apparently Mg-limited in Korup soil; Tetraberlinia, whilst K-demanding, appeared not to be K-limited (for growth). Added K enhanced plant P concentrations of both species. Extra applied Mg may also be alleviating soil aluminum toxicity, and hence improving growth indirectly and especially to the benefit of Microberlinia. Mg appears to be essential for Microberlinia seedling growth and its low soil availability in grove soils at Korup may be an important contributing factor to its poor recruitment. Microberlinia is highly shade-intolerant and strongly light-responding, whilst Tetraberlinia is more shade-tolerant and moderately light-responding, which affords an interesting contrast with respect to their differing responses to Mg supply. The study revealed novel aspects of functional traits and likely niche-partitioning among ectomycorrhizal caesalps in African rain forests. Identifying the direct and

  18. New avian Haemoproteus species (Haemosporida: Haemoproteidae) from African birds, with a critique of the use of host taxonomic information in hemoproteid classification.

    PubMed

    Iezhova, Tatjana A; Dodge, Molly; Sehgal, Ravinder N M; Smith, Thomas B; Valkiūnas, Gediminas

    2011-08-01

    Haemoproteus (Parahaemoproteus) micronuclearis n. sp., Haemoproteus (Parahaemoproteus) nucleofascialis n. sp., Haemoproteus (Parahaemoproteus) paranucleophilus n. sp., and Haemoproteus (Parahaemoproteus) homobelopolskyi n. sp. (Haemosporida, Haemoproteidae) are described from African passeriform birds based on the morphology of their blood stages and segments of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Red-billed quelea (Quelea quelea), red-headed malimbe (Malimbus rubricollis), and black-headed weaver (Ploceus melanocephalus) are the type vertebrate hosts of new hemoproteids. It is probable that new species have wide distribution in weavers in sub-Saharan Africa. Both H. micronuclearis and H. nucleofascialis can be readily distinguished from other avian hemoproteids by tiny, compact microgametocyte nuclei that are significantly smaller than macrogametocyte nuclei and are a rare character of hemosporidian parasites. Gametocytes of H. paranucleophilus are closely appressed to the erythrocyte nuclei and do not touch the erythrocyte envelope along their entire margin at all stages of their development, including fully grown gametocytes. A particularly distinctive feature of H. homobelopolskyi development is the presence of circumnuclear dumbbell-shaped macrogametocytes. Illustrations of blood stages of the new species are given, and morphological and phylogenetic analyses identify the DNA lineages that are associated with these parasites. Numerous recent studies show that some lineages of hemoproteids are often present in birds belonging to different families. As a result, the use of the host family as a taxonomic character should be questioned and preferably discouraged in hemoproteid taxonomy, particularly with regard to the parasites of passerine birds. Microscopic identification of avian hemoproteids requires comparison of Haemoproteus species described from birds of different families, as is an established practice with avian Plasmodium spp. Development of bar

  19. Tick infestation patterns in free ranging African buffalo (Syncercus caffer): Effects of host innate immunity and niche segregation among tick species.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Kadie; Ezenwa, Vanessa O; Jolles, Anna E

    2013-12-01

    Ticks are of vast importance to livestock health, and contribute to conflicts between wildlife conservation and agricultural interests; but factors driving tick infestation patterns on wild hosts are not well understood. We studied tick infestation patterns on free-ranging African buffalo (Syncercus caffer), asking (i) is there evidence for niche segregation among tick species?; and (ii) how do host characteristics affect variation in tick abundance among hosts? We identified ticks and estimated tick burdens on 134 adult female buffalo from two herds at Kruger National Park, South Africa. To assess niche segregation, we evaluated attachment site preferences and tested for correlations between abundances of different tick species. To investigate which host factors may drive variability in tick abundance, we measured age, body condition, reproductive and immune status in all hosts, and examined their effects on tick burdens. Two tick species were abundant on buffalo, Amblyomma hebraeum and Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi. A. hebraeum were found primarily in the inguinal and axillary regions; R. e. evertsi attached exclusively in the perianal area. Abundances of A. hebraeum and R. e. evertsi on the host were unrelated. These results suggest spatial niche segregation between A. hebraeum and R. e. evertsi on the buffalo. Buffalo with stronger innate immunity, and younger buffalo, had fewer ticks. Buffalo with low body condition scores, and pregnant buffalo, had higher tick burdens, but these effects varied between the two herds we sampled. This study is one of the first to link ectoparasite abundance patterns and immunity in a free-ranging mammalian host population. Based on independent abundances of A. hebraeum and R. e. evertsi on individual buffalo, we would expect no association between the diseases these ticks transmit. Longitudinal studies linking environmental variability with host immunity are needed to understand tick infestation patterns and the dynamics of tick

  20. Sensitivity of Above-Ground Biomass Estimates to Height-Diameter Modelling in Mixed-Species West African Woodlands

    PubMed Central

    Aynekulu, Ermias; Pitkänen, Sari; Packalen, Petteri

    2016-01-01

    It has been suggested that above-ground biomass (AGB) inventories should include tree height (H), in addition to diameter (D). As H is a difficult variable to measure, H-D models are commonly used to predict H. We tested a number of approaches for H-D modelling, including additive terms which increased the complexity of the model, and observed how differences in tree-level predictions of H propagated to plot-level AGB estimations. We were especially interested in detecting whether the choice of method can lead to bias. The compared approaches listed in the order of increasing complexity were: (B0) AGB estimations from D-only; (B1) involving also H obtained from a fixed-effects H-D model; (B2) involving also species; (B3) including also between-plot variability as random effects; and (B4) involving multilevel nested random effects for grouping plots in clusters. In light of the results, the modelling approach affected the AGB estimation significantly in some cases, although differences were negligible for some of the alternatives. The most important differences were found between including H or not in the AGB estimation. We observed that AGB predictions without H information were very sensitive to the environmental stress parameter (E), which can induce a critical bias. Regarding the H-D modelling, the most relevant effect was found when species was included as an additive term. We presented a two-step methodology, which succeeded in identifying the species for which the general H-D relation was relevant to modify. Based on the results, our final choice was the single-level mixed-effects model (B3), which accounts for the species but also for the plot random effects reflecting site-specific factors such as soil properties and degree of disturbance. PMID:27367857

  1. Thermal limits of wild and laboratory strains of two African malaria vector species, Anopheles arabiensis and Anopheles funestus

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Malaria affects large parts of the developing world and is responsible for almost 800,000 deaths annually. As climates change, concerns have arisen as to how this vector-borne disease will be impacted by changing rainfall patterns and warming temperatures. Despite the importance and controversy surrounding the impact of climate change on the potential spread of this disease, little information exists on the tolerances of several of the vector species themselves. Methods Using a ramping protocol (to assess critical thermal limits - CT) and plunge protocol (to assess lethal temperature limits - LT) information on the thermal tolerance of two of Africa’s important malaria vectors, Anopheles arabiensis and Anopheles funestus was collected. The effects of age, thermal acclimation treatment, sex and strain (laboratory versus wild adults) were investigated for CT determinations for each species. The effects of age and sex for adults and life stage (larvae, pupae, adults) were investigated for LT determinations. Results In both species, females are more tolerant to low and high temperatures than males; larvae and pupae have higher upper lethal limits than do adults. Thermal acclimation of adults has large effects in some instances but small effects in others. Younger adults tend to be more tolerant of low or high temperatures than older age groups. Long-standing laboratory colonies are sufficiently similar in thermal tolerance to field-collected animals to provide reasonable surrogates when making inferences about wild population responses. Differences between these two vectors in their thermal tolerances, especially in larvae and pupae, are plausibly a consequence of different habitat utilization. Conclusions Limited plasticity is characteristic of the adults of these vector species relative to others examined to date, suggesting limited scope for within-generation change in thermal tolerance. These findings and the greater tolerance of females to thermal

  2. Implementing telemetry on new species in remote areas: Recommendations from a large-scale satellite tracking study of African waterfowl

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cappelle, J.; Iverson, S.A.; Takekawa, J.Y.; Newman, S.H.; Dodman, T.; Gaidet, N.

    2011-01-01

    We provide recommendations for implementing telemetry studies on waterfowl on the basis of our experience in a tracking study conducted in three countries of sub-Saharan Africa. The aim of the study was to document movements by duck species identified as priority candidates for the potential spread of avian influenza. Our study design included both captive and field test components on four wild duck species (Garganey, Comb Duck, White-faced Duck and Fulvous Duck). We used our location data to evaluate marking success and determine when signal loss occurred. The captive study of eight ducks marked with non-working transmitters in a zoo in Montpellier, France, prior to fieldwork showed no evidence of adverse effects, and the harness design appeared to work well. The field study in Malawi, Nigeria and Mali started in 2007 on 2 February, 6 February and 14 February, and ended on 22 November 2007 (288 d), 20 January 2010 (1 079 d), and 3 November 2008 (628 d), respectively. The field study indicated that 38 of 47 (81%) of the platform transmitter terminals (PTTs) kept transmitting after initial deployment, and the transmitters provided 15 576 locations. Signal loss during the field study was attributed to three main causes: PTT loss, PTT failure and mortality (natural, human-caused and PTT-related). The PTT signal quality varied by geographic region, and interference caused signal loss in the Mediterranean Sea region. We recommend careful attention at the beginning of the study to determine the optimum timing of transmitter deployment and the number of transmitters to be deployed per species. These sample sizes should be calculated by taking into account region-specific causes of signal loss to ensure research objectives are met. These recommendations should be useful for researchers undertaking a satellite tracking program, especially when working in remote areas of Africa where logistics are difficult or with poorly-known species. ?? NISC (Pty) Ltd.

  3. The high cost of mutualism: effects of four species of East African ant symbionts on their myrmecophyte host tree.

    PubMed

    Stanton, Maureen L; Palmer, Todd M

    2011-05-01

    Three recent meta-analyses of protective plant-ant mutualisms report a surprisingly weak relationship between herbivore protection and measured demographic benefits to ant-plants, suggesting high tolerance for herbivory, substantial costs of ant-mediated defense, and/or benefits that are realized episodically rather than continuously. Experimental manipulations of protective ant-plant associations typically last for less than a year, yet virtually all specialized myrmecophytes are long-lived perennials for which the costs and benefits of maintaining ant symbionts could accrue at different rates over the host's lifetime. To complement long-term monitoring studies, we experimentally excluded each of four ant symbionts from their long-lived myrmecophyte host trees (Acacia drepanolobium) for 4.5 years. Ant species varied in their effectiveness against herbivores and in their effects on intermediate-term growth and reproduction, but the level of herbivore protection provided was a poor predictor of the net impact they had on host trees. Removal of the three Crematogaster species resulted in cumulative gains in host tree growth and/or reproduction over the course of the experiment, despite the fact that two of those species significantly reduce chronic herbivore damage. In contrast, although T. penzigi is a relatively poor defender, the low cost of maintaining this ant symbiont apparently eliminated negative impacts on overall tree growth and reproduction, resulting in enhanced allocation to new branch growth by the final census. Acacia drepanolobium is evidently highly tolerant of herbivory by insects and small browsers, and the costs of maintaining Crematogaster colonies exceeded the benefits received during the study. No experimental trees were killed by elephants, but elephant damage was uniquely associated with reduced tree growth, and at least one ant species (C. mimosae) strongly deterred elephant browsing. We hypothesize that rare but catastrophic damage by

  4. Sensitivity of Above-Ground Biomass Estimates to Height-Diameter Modelling in Mixed-Species West African Woodlands.

    PubMed

    Valbuena, Rubén; Heiskanen, Janne; Aynekulu, Ermias; Pitkänen, Sari; Packalen, Petteri

    2016-01-01

    It has been suggested that above-ground biomass (AGB) inventories should include tree height (H), in addition to diameter (D). As H is a difficult variable to measure, H-D models are commonly used to predict H. We tested a number of approaches for H-D modelling, including additive terms which increased the complexity of the model, and observed how differences in tree-level predictions of H propagated to plot-level AGB estimations. We were especially interested in detecting whether the choice of method can lead to bias. The compared approaches listed in the order of increasing complexity were: (B0) AGB estimations from D-only; (B1) involving also H obtained from a fixed-effects H-D model; (B2) involving also species; (B3) including also between-plot variability as random effects; and (B4) involving multilevel nested random effects for grouping plots in clusters. In light of the results, the modelling approach affected the AGB estimation significantly in some cases, although differences were negligible for some of the alternatives. The most important differences were found between including H or not in the AGB estimation. We observed that AGB predictions without H information were very sensitive to the environmental stress parameter (E), which can induce a critical bias. Regarding the H-D modelling, the most relevant effect was found when species was included as an additive term. We presented a two-step methodology, which succeeded in identifying the species for which the general H-D relation was relevant to modify. Based on the results, our final choice was the single-level mixed-effects model (B3), which accounts for the species but also for the plot random effects reflecting site-specific factors such as soil properties and degree of disturbance. PMID:27367857

  5. Metabolic and water loss rates of two cryptic species in the African velvet worm genus Opisthopatus (Onychophora).

    PubMed

    Weldon, Christopher W; Daniels, Savel R; Clusella-Trullas, Susana; Chown, Steven L

    2013-04-01

    Velvet worms (Onychophora) are characterised by a dearth of mechanisms to retain water, yet recently identified cryptic species are located in areas with seemingly different climates. Using flow-through respirometry, this study determined the metabolic, water loss and cuticular water loss rates of two cryptic species of Opisthopatus cinctipes s.l. from locations that differ in their current climate. When controlling for trial temperature and body mass, velvet worms from the drier and warmer site had significantly lower water loss rates than the wetter and cooler site. Mass-corrected metabolic rate and cuticular water loss did not differ significantly between the two sites. The scaling exponent for the relationship between log metabolic rate and log body mass for O. cinctipes s.l. declined with an increase in temperature from 5 to 15 °C. Females in the two cryptic Opisthopatus species had higher metabolic, water loss and cuticular water loss rates than males, which may represent the increased energetic demands of embryonic growth and development in these viviparous taxa. PMID:23080220

  6. Sleep and wake in rhythmic versus arrhythmic chronotypes of a microphthalmic species of African mole rat (Fukomys mechowii).

    PubMed

    Bhagwandin, Adhil; Gravett, Nadine; Lyamin, Oleg I; Oosthuizen, Maria K; Bennett, Nigel C; Siegel, Jerome M; Manger, Paul R

    2011-01-01

    The giant Zambian mole rat (Fukomys mechowii) is a subterranean Afrotropical rodent noted for its regressed visual system and unusual patterns of circadian rhythmicity--within this species some individuals exhibit distinct regular circadian patterns of locomotor activity while others have arrhythmic circadian patterns. The current study was aimed at understanding whether differences in circadian chronotypes in this species affect the patterns and proportions of the different phases of the sleep-wake cycle. Physiological parameters of sleep (electroencephalogram and electromyogram) and behaviour (video recording) were recorded continuously for 72 h from 6 mole rats (3 rhythmic and 3 arrhythmic) using a telemetric system and a low-light CCTV camera connected to a DVD recorder. The results indicate that the arrhythmic individuals spend more time in waking with a longer average duration of a waking episode, less time in non-rapid eye movement (NREM) with a shorter average duration of an NREM episode though a greater NREM sleep intensity, and similar sleep cycle lengths. The time spent in rapid eye movement (REM) and the average duration of an REM episode were similar between the chronotypes. PMID:21952092

  7. Antibiogram, Adhesive Characteristics, and Incidence of Class 1 Integron in Aeromonas Species Isolated from Two South African Rivers

    PubMed Central

    Igbinosa, Isoken H.; Chigor, Vincent N.; Igbinosa, Etinosa O.; Obi, Lawrence C.; Okoh, Anthony I.

    2013-01-01

    Aeromonas species are well distributed in freshwater environments, and their natural susceptibility to antimicrobials renders them interesting candidates for the survey of antimicrobial resistance in freshwater milieu. Water samples were collected from Kat and Tyume rivers in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, and a total of 45 isolates identified as Aeromonas species were recovered from the two rivers. All Aeromonas isolates were resistant to oxacillin, penicillin, clindamycin, cephalothin, vancomycin, and rifamycin, while appreciable susceptibilities (89.3 : 94.1%, 82.1 : 94.1%, 85.7 : 88.2%, and 92.9 : 88.2%) were observed against ciprofloxacin, chloramphenicol, nitrofurantoin, and gentamicin from Kat and Tyume rivers, respectively. Multiple antibiotic resistance (MAR) indices ranged from 0.016 to 0.044 for the two rivers. Class 1 integron was detected in about 20% of the isolates, and all the isolates except one showed ability to produce biofilm in vitro as weak producers (53.33%), moderate producers (15.56%), and strong producers (28.9%). This investigation provides a baseline data on antibiotic resistance as well as the adhesive characteristics of Aeromonas isolates from Tyume and Kat rivers in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. PMID:24187658

  8. Estimating environmental preferences of South African pelagic fish species using catch size- and remote sensing data [review article

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agenbag, J. J.; Richardson, A. J.; Demarcq, H.; Fréon, P.; Weeks, S.; Shillington, F. A.

    2003-10-01

    We have studied the relationship between the variations in density of South African anchovy ( Engraulisicapensis), sardine ( Sardinopssagax) and round herring ( Etrumeuswhiteheadi) from commercial catch records (1987-1997) and a suite of variables describing the environment. The indicator of density (local fish abundance) used was Catch-per-set, obtained from the more than 130 000 catches made during the 11-year study period. The set of environmental parameters included: temporal ( Year, Month, time of day or Hour), spatial ( Latitude, Longitude and water Depth), lunar ( Moonphase and Moonelevation), and thermal conditions of the environment (sea surface temperature together with indices of thermal frontal intensity and temporal change). Boatlength was used to account for fishing gear effects. Previous investigations of this nature have tended to use simple bivariate correlation approaches, which suffer from the problem of covariance between the predictive variable and other environmental- or fisheries related variables not included in the analysis. We have, therefore, adopted a multivariate modelling approach, which identifies relationships between Catch-per-set and each environmental variable, accounting for covariation amongst predictors. Model building consisted of first constructing generalised additive models (GAM) as an exploratory tool to identify the shapes of the relationships, followed by parameterising these relationships using general linear models (GLM) to provide a robust predictive tool. Using this modelling approach, the suite of environmental variables explained 19.6% of the variation in Catch-per-set of anchovy, 33.9% of sardine, and 54.3% of round herring in the final GLM models. Temporal variables ( Year, Month, Hour), accounted for the major part of the variability in Catch-per-set but variables derived from SST and the lunar cycle provide insight into the effects of environmental factors on fish behaviour. For instance, it appears that

  9. Cytotoxic Activity of Crude Extracts as well as of Pure Components from Jatropha Species, Plants Used Extensively in African Traditional Medicine

    PubMed Central

    Aiyelaagbe, Olapeju O.; Hamid, Amao A.; Fattorusso, Ernesto; Taglialatela-Scafati, Orazio; Schröder, Heinz C.; Müller, Werner E. G.

    2011-01-01

    Extracts from Jatropha curcas, a plant used in African traditional medicine for various diseases, were tested for cytotoxic activity. The root extracts strongly reduced cell growth of tumor cells in vitro, a result consistent with the knowledge of the application of these plant extracts in traditional medicine, especially to cure/ameliorate cancer. A selection of pure diterpenoids existing in extracts from Jatropha species and isolated from J. curcas, for example, curcusone C, curcusone D, multidione, 15-epi-4Z-jatrogrossidentadion, 4Z-jatrogrossidentadion, 4E-jatrogrossidentadion, 2-hydroxyisojatrogrossidion, and 2-epi-hydroxyisojatrogrossidion, were likewise tested, and they also showed strong cytotoxic activity. It turned out that these extracts are highly active against L5178y mouse lymphoma cells and HeLa human cervix carcinoma cells, while they cause none or only very low activity against neuronal cell, for example, PC12. These data underscore that extracts from J. curcas or pure secondary metabolites from the plant are promising candidates to be anticancer drug, combined with low neuroactive effects. PMID:21754941

  10. Four plant defensins from an indigenous South African Brassicaceae species display divergent activities against two test pathogens despite high sequence similarity in the encoding genes

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Plant defensins are an important component of the innate defence system of plants where they form protective antimicrobial barriers between tissue types of plant organs as well as around seeds. These peptides also have other activities that are important for agricultural applications as well as the medical sector. Amongst the numerous plant peptides isolated from a variety of plant species, a significant number of promising defensins have been isolated from Brassicaceae species. Here we report on the isolation and characterization of four defensins from Heliophila coronopifolia, a native South African Brassicaceae species. Results Four defensin genes (Hc-AFP1-4) were isolated with a homology based PCR strategy. Analysis of the deduced amino acid sequences showed that the peptides were 72% similar and grouped closest to defensins isolated from other Brassicaceae species. The Hc-AFP1 and 3 peptides shared high homology (94%) and formed a unique grouping in the Brassicaceae defensins, whereas Hc-AFP2 and 4 formed a second homology grouping with defensins from Arabidopsis and Raphanus. Homology modelling showed that the few amino acids that differed between the four peptides had an effect on the surface properties of the defensins, specifically in the alpha-helix and the loop connecting the second and third beta-strands. These areas are implicated in determining differential activities of defensins. Comparing the activities after recombinant production of the peptides, Hc-AFP2 and 4 had IC50 values of 5-20 μg ml-1 against two test pathogens, whereas Hc-AFP1 and 3 were less active. The activity against Botrytis cinerea was associated with membrane permeabilization, hyper-branching, biomass reduction and even lytic activity. In contrast, only Hc-AFP2 and 4 caused membrane permeabilization and severe hyper-branching against the wilting pathogen Fusarium solani, while Hc-AFP1 and 3 had a mild morphogenetic effect on the fungus, without any indication of

  11. New species and new records of Pterosthetops: eumadicolous water beetles of the South African Cape (Coleoptera, Hydraenidae).

    PubMed

    Bilton, David T

    2014-01-01

    Pterosthetops is one of a number of hydraenid genera endemic to the Cape of South Africa, whose minute moss beetle fauna is amongst the most diverse on earth. Here seven species are described as new: Pterosthetops baini sp. nov., Pterosthetops coriaceus sp. nov., Pterosthetops indwei sp. nov., Ptersothetops pulcherrimus sp. nov., Pterosthetops swartbergensis sp. nov., Pterosthetops tuberculatus sp. nov. and Pterosthetops uitkyki sp. nov., all from mountains in the Western Cape region. New collection records are also provided for all five previously described members of the genus, together with a revised key. Pterosthetops appear to be specialist inhabitants of seepages over rock faces (hygropetric/madicolous habitats), rarely being found outside such situations. PMID:24943181

  12. Characterization of endophytic bacteria from cucurbit fruits with potential benefits to agriculture in melons (Cucumis melo L.).

    PubMed

    Glassner, Hanoch; Zchori-Fein, Einat; Compant, Stéphane; Sessitsch, Angela; Katzir, Nurit; Portnoy, Vitaly; Yaron, Sima

    2015-07-01

    Endophytes are microorganisms that mainly colonize vegetative parts, but are also found in reproductive and disseminating organs, and may have beneficial characteristics. To identify microorganisms associated with the agriculturally important family, Cucurbitaceae, endophytes were initially determined in fruits of Cucumis melo Reticulatus Group 'Dulce' by a cultivation-independent approach based on fluorescence in situ hybridization using double labeling of oligonucleotide probes. Alpha-, Beta-, Gammaproteobacteria, Firmicutes and Actinobacteria were localized inside the fruits. Culturable bacteria were further isolated and identified from fruit tissues of 'Dulce', from fruits of other cultivated and wild-field-grown Cucurbitaceae, and from wild fruits growing under natural conditions. Low densities of culturable bacteria were detected in the investigated fruits, especially in four out of the five wild species, regardless of their growing environment. Substantial differences were observed between the wild and cultivated cucurbit taxa in regard to the number of colonized fruits as well as the type of endophytes. Bacillus was the most dominant genus of endophytes colonizing fruits of Cucurbitaceae. The antagonistic effects of isolated endophytes were assessed against cucurbit disease agents in dual-culture assays. Several bacterial isolates exhibited antagonistic properties against the tested plant pathogens. The identified bacteria may be useful for protecting plants not only in the field, but also for post-harvest. PMID:26183916

  13. Phloem unloading follows an extensive apoplasmic pathway in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) fruit from anthesis to marketable maturing stage.

    PubMed

    Hu, Liping; Sun, Huihui; Li, Ruifu; Zhang, Lingyun; Wang, Shaohui; Sui, Xiaolei; Zhang, Zhenxian

    2011-11-01

    The phloem unloading pathway remains unclear in fruits of Cucurbitaceae, a classical stachyose-transporting species with bicollateral phloem. Using a combination of electron microscopy, transport of phloem-mobile symplasmic tracer carboxyfluorescein, assays of acid invertase and sucrose transporter, and [(14)C]sugar uptake, the phloem unloading pathway was studied in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) fruit from anthesis to the marketable maturing stage. Structural investigations showed that the sieve element-companion cell (SE-CC) complex of the vascular bundles feeding fruit flesh is apparently symplasmically restricted. Imaging of carboxyfluorescein unloading showed that the dye remained confined to the phloem strands of the vascular bundles in the whole fruit throughout the stages examined. A 37 kDa acid invertase was located predominantly in the cell walls of SE-CC complexes and parenchyma cells. Studies of [(14)C]sugar uptake suggested that energy-driven transporters may be functional in sugar trans-membrane transport within symplasmically restricted SE-CC complex, which was further confirmed by the existence of a functional plasma membrane sucrose transporter (CsSUT4) in cucumber fruit. These data provide a clear evidence for an apoplasmic phloem unloading pathway in cucumber fruit. A presumption that putative raffinose or stachyose transporters may be involved in soluble sugars unloading was discussed. PMID:21707653

  14. Ultraviolet-induced photodegradation of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. ) microsomal and soluble protein tryptophanyl residues in vitro

    SciTech Connect

    Caldwell, C.R. )

    1993-03-01

    The in vitro effects of ultraviolet B (280--320 nm) radiation on microsomal membrane proteins and partially purified ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase (Rubisco) from cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) was investigated by measuring the direct photolytic reduction of tryptophan fluorescence and the formation of fluorescent photooxidation products. Exposure of microsomes and Rubisco to monochromatic 300-nm radiation resulted in the loss of intrinsic tryptophan fluorescence and the production of blue-emitting fluorophores. The major product of tryptophan photolysis was tentatively identified as N-formylkynurenine (N-FK). Even though the rates of tryptophan photodegradation and N-FK formation were similar, the amount of blue fluorescence produced was significantly higher in the microsomes relative to Rubisco. Studies with various free radical scavengers and other modifiers indicated that tryptophan photodegradation requires oxygen species. The optimum wavelengths for loss of tryptophan fluorescence were 290 nm for the microsomes and 280 nm for Rubisco. The temperature dependence of tryptophan fluorescence and rate of tryptophan photodegradation indicated an alteration in the cucumber microsomal membranes at about 24[degrees]C, which influenced protein structure and tryptophan photosensitivity. 29 refs., 6 figs., 1 tab.

  15. Detection of antimicrobial compounds by bioautography of different extracts of leaves of selected South African tree species.

    PubMed

    Suleimana, M M; McGaw, L J; Naidoo, V; Eloff, J N

    2010-01-01

    The hexane, acetone, dichloromethane and methanol extracts of Combretum vendae A.E. van Wyk (Combretaceae), Commiphora harveyi (Engl.) Engl. (Burseraceae), Khaya anthotheca (Welm.) C.DC (Meliaceae), Kirkia wilmsii Engl. (Kirkiaceae), Loxostylis alata A. Spreng. ex Rchb. (Anacardiaceae), Ochna natalitia (Meisn.) Walp. (Ochnaceae) and Protorhus longifolia (Bernh. Ex C. Krauss) Engl. (Anacardiaceae) were screened for their antimicrobial activity. The test organisms included bacteria (Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus), and fungi (Aspergillus fumigatus, Candida albicans, Cryptococcus neoformans, Microsporum canis and Sporothrix schenckii). A simple bioautographic procedure, involving spraying suspensions of the bacteria or fungi on thin layer chromatography (TLC) plates developed in solvents of varying polarities was used to detect the number of antibacterial and antifungal compounds present in the extracts. All the extracts had antimicrobial activity against at least one of the test microorganisms. This activity was denoted by white spots against a red-purple background on the TLC plates after spraying with tetrazolium violet. Twenty seven TLC plates; 9 for each solvent system and 3 different solvent systems per organism were tested in the bioautographic procedure. Of the bacteria tested, S. aureus was inhibited by the most compounds separated on the TLC plates from all the tested plants. Similarly, growth of the fungus C. neoformans was also inhibited by many compounds present in the extracts. Loxostylis alata appeared to be the plant extract with the highest number of inhibition bands when compared with other plants tested against both bacteria and fungi. This species was selected for in depth further study. PMID:21304615

  16. Genome-wide characterization of simple sequence repeats in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Cucumber, Cucumis sativus L. is an important vegetable crop worldwide. Until very recently, cucumber genetic and genomic resources, especially molecular markers, have been very limited, impeding progress of cucumber breeding efforts. Microsatellites are short tandemly repeated DNA sequences, which are frequently favored as genetic markers due to their high level of polymorphism and codominant inheritance. Data from previously characterized genomes has shown that these repeats vary in frequency, motif sequence, and genomic location across taxa. During the last year, the genomes of two cucumber genotypes were sequenced including the Chinese fresh market type inbred line '9930' and the North American pickling type inbred line 'Gy14'. These sequences provide a powerful tool for developing markers in a large scale. In this study, we surveyed and characterized the distribution and frequency of perfect microsatellites in 203 Mbp assembled Gy14 DNA sequences, representing 55% of its nuclear genome, and in cucumber EST sequences. Similar analyses were performed in genomic and EST data from seven other plant species, and the results were compared with those of cucumber. Results A total of 112,073 perfect repeats were detected in the Gy14 cucumber genome sequence, accounting for 0.9% of the assembled Gy14 genome, with an overall density of 551.9 SSRs/Mbp. While tetranucleotides were the most frequent microsatellites in genomic DNA sequence, dinucleotide repeats, which had more repeat units than any other SSR type, had the highest cumulative sequence length. Coding regions (ESTs) of the cucumber genome had fewer microsatellites compared to its genomic sequence, with trinucleotides predominating in EST sequences. AAG was the most frequent repeat in cucumber ESTs. Overall, AT-rich motifs prevailed in both genomic and EST data. Compared to the other species examined, cucumber genomic sequence had the highest density of SSRs (although comparable to the density of poplar

  17. A novel multilocus variable number tandem repeat analysis typing scheme for African phylotype III strains of the Ralstonia solanacearum species complex

    PubMed Central

    Ravelomanantsoa, Santatra; Robène, Isabelle; Chiroleu, Frédéric; Guérin, Fabien; Poussier, Stéphane; Pruvost, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Background. Reliable genotyping that provides an accurate description of diversity in the context of pathogen emergence is required for the establishment of strategies to improve disease management. MultiLocus variable number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) is a valuable genotyping method. It can be performed at small evolutionary scales where high discriminatory power is needed. Strains of the Ralstonia solanacearum species complex (RSSC) are highly genetically diverse. These destructive pathogens are the causative agent of bacterial wilt on an unusually broad range of host plants worldwide. In this study, we developed an MLVA scheme for genotyping the African RSSC phylotype III. Methods. We selected different publicly available tandem repeat (TR) loci and additional TR loci from the genome of strain CMR15 as markers. Based on these loci, a new phylotype III-MLVA scheme is presented. MLVA and multiLocus sequence typing (MLST) were compared at the global, regional, and local scales. Different populations of epidemiologically related and unrelated RSSC phylotype III strains were used. Results and Discussion. Sixteen polymorphic TR loci, which included seven microsatellites and nine minisatellites, were selected. These TR loci were distributed throughout the genome (chromosome and megaplasmid) and located in both coding and intergenic regions. The newly developed RS3-MLVA16 scheme was more discriminative than MLST. RS3-MLVA16 showed good ability in differentiating strains at global, regional, and local scales, and it especially highlighted epidemiological links between closely related strains at the local scale. RS3-MLVA16 also underlines genetic variability within the same MLST-type and clonal complex, and gives a first overview of population structure. Overall, RS3-MLVA16 is a promising genotyping method for outbreak investigation at a fine scale, and it could be used for outbreak investigation as a first-line, low-cost assay for the routine screening of RSSC

  18. A novel multilocus variable number tandem repeat analysis typing scheme for African phylotype III strains of the Ralstonia solanacearum species complex.

    PubMed

    Ravelomanantsoa, Santatra; Robène, Isabelle; Chiroleu, Frédéric; Guérin, Fabien; Poussier, Stéphane; Pruvost, Olivier; Prior, Philippe

    2016-01-01

    Background. Reliable genotyping that provides an accurate description of diversity in the context of pathogen emergence is required for the establishment of strategies to improve disease management. MultiLocus variable number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA) is a valuable genotyping method. It can be performed at small evolutionary scales where high discriminatory power is needed. Strains of the Ralstonia solanacearum species complex (RSSC) are highly genetically diverse. These destructive pathogens are the causative agent of bacterial wilt on an unusually broad range of host plants worldwide. In this study, we developed an MLVA scheme for genotyping the African RSSC phylotype III. Methods. We selected different publicly available tandem repeat (TR) loci and additional TR loci from the genome of strain CMR15 as markers. Based on these loci, a new phylotype III-MLVA scheme is presented. MLVA and multiLocus sequence typing (MLST) were compared at the global, regional, and local scales. Different populations of epidemiologically related and unrelated RSSC phylotype III strains were used. Results and Discussion. Sixteen polymorphic TR loci, which included seven microsatellites and nine minisatellites, were selected. These TR loci were distributed throughout the genome (chromosome and megaplasmid) and located in both coding and intergenic regions. The newly developed RS3-MLVA16 scheme was more discriminative than MLST. RS3-MLVA16 showed good ability in differentiating strains at global, regional, and local scales, and it especially highlighted epidemiological links between closely related strains at the local scale. RS3-MLVA16 also underlines genetic variability within the same MLST-type and clonal complex, and gives a first overview of population structure. Overall, RS3-MLVA16 is a promising genotyping method for outbreak investigation at a fine scale, and it could be used for outbreak investigation as a first-line, low-cost assay for the routine screening of RSSC

  19. Evaluation of the inhibition of carbohydrate hydrolysing enzymes, antioxidant activity and polyphenolic content of extracts of ten African Ficus species (Moraceae) used traditionally to treat diabetes

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Some Ficus species have been used in traditional African medicine in the treatment of diabetes. The antidiabetic potential of certain species has been confirmed in vivo but the mechanism of activity remains uncertain. The aim of this study was to determine the activity and to investigate the mechanism of antidiabetic activity of ten selected Ficus species through inhibition of α-amylase and α-glucosidase activity, and the possible relationship between these activities, the total polyphenolic content and the antioxidant activity. Methods Dried acetone leaf extracts were reconstituted with appropriate solvents and used to determine total polyphenolic content antioxidant activity, α-amylase and α-glucosidase inhibitory activity. Results The crude acetone extract of F. lutea had the highest polyphenolic content (56.85 ± 1.82 mg GAE/g of dry material) and the strongest antioxidant activity with a TEAC value of 4.80 ± 0.90. The antioxidant activity of the acetone extracts of the Ficus species may not be ascribed to total polyphenolic content alone. The crude extract at a concentration of 0.5 mg/ml of F. lutea (64.3 ± 3.6%) had the best α-glucosidase (sucrase) inhibitory activity. The EC50 of F. lutea (290 ± 111 μg/ml) was not significantly different from that of F. sycomorus (217 ± 69 μg/ml). The α-amylase inhibitory activity of F. lutea (95.4 ± 1.2%) at a concentration of 1 mg/ml was the highest among the Ficus species screened. The EC50 for F. lutea (9.42 ± 2.01 μ g/ml), though the highest, was not significantly different (p < 0.05) from that of F. craterostoma and F. natalensis. It was apparent that the crude acetone extract of F. lutea is a partially non-competitive inhibitor of α-amylase and α-glucosidase. Based on correlation coefficients polyphenolics may be responsible for α-glucosidase activity but probably not for α-amylase activity. Conclusion Antidiabetic activity potential via inhibition

  20. Integrative Analyses of Nontargeted Volatile Profiling and Transcriptome Data Provide Molecular Insight into VOC Diversity in Cucumber Plants (Cucumis sativus).

    PubMed

    Wei, Guo; Tian, Peng; Zhang, Fengxia; Qin, Hao; Miao, Han; Chen, Qingwen; Hu, Zhongyi; Cao, Li; Wang, Meijiao; Gu, Xingfang; Huang, Sanwen; Chen, Mingsheng; Wang, Guodong

    2016-09-01

    Plant volatile organic compounds, which are generated in a tissue-specific manner, play important ecological roles in the interactions between plants and their environments, including the well-known functions of attracting pollinators and protecting plants from herbivores/fungi attacks. However, to date, there have not been reports of holistic volatile profiling of the various tissues of a single plant species, even for the model plant species. In this study, we qualitatively and quantitatively analyzed 85 volatile chemicals, including 36 volatile terpenes, in 23 different tissues of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) plants using solid-phase microextraction combined with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Most volatile chemicals were found to occur in a highly tissue-specific manner. The consensus transcriptomes for each of the 23 cucumber tissues were generated with RNA sequencing data and used in volatile organic compound-gene correlation analysis to screen for candidate genes likely to be involved in cucumber volatile biosynthetic pathways. In vitro biochemical characterization of the candidate enzymes demonstrated that TERPENE SYNTHASE11 (TPS11)/TPS14, TPS01, and TPS15 were responsible for volatile terpenoid production in the roots, flowers, and fruit tissues of cucumber plants, respectively. A functional heteromeric geranyl(geranyl) pyrophosphate synthase, composed of an inactive small subunit (type I) and an active large subunit, was demonstrated to play a key role in monoterpene production in cucumber. In addition to establishing a standard workflow for the elucidation of plant volatile biosynthetic pathways, the knowledge generated from this study lays a solid foundation for future investigations of both the physiological functions of cucumber volatiles and aspects of cucumber flavor improvement. PMID:27457123

  1. Safety Assessment of Cucumis sativus (Cucumber)-Derived Ingredients as Used in Cosmetics.

    PubMed

    Fiume, Monice M; Bergfeld, Wilma F; Belsito, Donald V; Hill, Ronald A; Klaassen, Curtis D; Liebler, Daniel C; Marks, James G; Shank, Ronald C; Slaga, Thomas J; Snyder, Paul W; Andersen, F Alan

    2014-05-26

    The CIR Expert Panel assessed the safety of 6 Cucumis sativus (cucumber)-derived ingredients and found them safe in cosmetic formulations in the present practices of use and concentration. These ingredients are reported to function in cosmetics as skin-conditioning agents. Cucumber is a commonly consumed food with no history of significant adverse effects, suggesting that its ingredients should not pose any major safety issues following oral exposure. This assessment focused on the dermal exposure to the low concentrations of these ingredients as used in cosmetics. Some of the constituents of cucumbers have been assessed previously for safe use as cosmetic ingredients. PMID:24861368

  2. Construction of a Fosmid Library of Cucumber (Cucumis sativus) and Comparative Analyses of the eIF4E and eIF(iso)4E Regions from Cucumber and Melon (Cucumis melo)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumber and melon are the most economically important plants in the family Cucurbitaceae and are members of distinct subgenera in the genus Cucumis. We undertook comparative sequence analyses to assess synteny between the cucumber and melon genomes. A fosmid library of cucumber was synthesized as...

  3. Effects of citric acid, cucumis powder and pressure cooking on quality attributes of goat meat curry.

    PubMed

    Narayan, Raj; Mendiratta, S K; Mane, B G

    2015-03-01

    In the present study, comparative effects of marination in citric acid (1 %), spray of cucumis powder (2 %) and pressure cooking (at 15 psi) were observed on quality attributes of goat meat curry. Significant difference (p < 0.05) was observed in pH of citric acid treated samples compared to other samples. Significant difference (p < 0.05) was observed in protein and soluble collagen content of meat curry treated with pressure as compared to other treated samples including control. Cooking yield was significantly (p < 0.05) higher in control samples. The significant difference was observed in chewiness and gumminess at (p < 0.05) level and hardness at (p < 0.01) level within and between the various treatment groups. However, overall values were higher in control samples. Similarly, shear force value was significantly (p < 0.05) higher for control compared to treated samples. The significant difference (p < 0.05) was observed in various sensory attributes of goat meat curry and pressure treated cooked meat curry was highly preferred followed by cucumis powder, citric acid and control samples. PMID:25745255

  4. Inheritance and mapping of the ore gene controlling the quantity of ß-carotene in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) endocarp

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The metabolic precursor of vitamin A, ß-carotene, is essential for human health. The gene(s) controlling ß- carotene quantity (QßC) has been introgressed from Xishuangbanna gourd (XIS, possessing ß-carotene; Cucumis sativus L. var. xishuangbannanesis Qi et Yuan; 2n = 2x = 14) into cultivated cucumbe...

  5. Use of molecular markers aids in the development of diverse inbred backcross lines in beit alpha cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Beit Alpha cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) is a Mediterranean fresh-market type with a relatively narrow genetic base. To broaden its base for plant improvement, 42 diverse accessions were compared employing a previously defined standard marker array to choose wide-based parental lines for use in bac...

  6. Use of molecular markers aids in the development of diverse inbred backcross lines in Beit Alpha cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Beit Alpha cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) is a Mediterranean fresh-market type with a relatively narrow genetic base. To broaden its base for plant improvement, 42 diverse accessions were compared employing a previously defined standard marker array to choose wide-based parental lines for use in bac...

  7. Investigation of the Use of "Cucumis Sativus" for Remediation of Chromium from Contaminated Environmental Matrices: An Interdisciplinary Instrumental Analysis Project

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Butler, Lynsey R.; Edwards, Michael R.; Farmer, Russell; Greenly, Kathryn J.; Hensler, Sherri; Jenkins, Scott E.; Joyce, J. Michael; Mann, Jason A.; Prentice, Boone M.; Puckette, Andrew E.; Shuford, Christopher M.; Porter, Sarah E. G.; Rhoten, Melissa C.

    2009-01-01

    An interdisciplinary, semester-long project is presented in which students grow Cucumis sativus (cucumber) plants from seeds and study the ability of the plants to remediate a heavy metal from contaminated soil or water or both. Phytoremediation strategies for environmental cleanup are presented as possible alternatives to chemical based clean-up…

  8. Genome-wide characterization of microsatellites in Cucumis hystrix and in silico identification of polymorphic SSR markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumis hystrix (2n = 2x = 24, genome HH) is a wild relative of cucumber (C. sativus L., 2n = 2x = 14) that possesses multiple disease resistances and has a great potential for cucumber improvement. Despite its importance, there is no genomic resource currently available for C. hystrix. To expedite ...

  9. Carotene and novel apocarotenoid concentrations in orange-fleshed Cucumis melo melons: determinations of beta-carotene bioaccessability and bioavailability

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Muskmelons, both cantaloupe (Cucumis melo Reticulatus Group) and orange-fleshed honey dew (C. melo Inodorus Group), a cross between orange-fleshed cantaloupe and green-fleshed honey dew, are excellent sources of ß-carotene. Although ß-carotene from melon is an important dietary antioxidant and precu...

  10. Response of cucurbit rootstocks for grafted melon (Cucumis melo) to southern root-knot nematode, Meloidogyne incognita

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Root-knot nematodes (RKN) are an important re-emerging pest of melon (Cucumis melo), due largely to the loss of methyl bromide as a pre-plant soil fumigant. Melon is highly susceptible to southern RKN, Meloidogyne incognita, which causes severe root galling and reduced melon fruit yields. Cucurbit...

  11. Melon (Cucumis melo L.) Diversity Analyses Provide Strategies for Germplasm Curation, Genetic Improvement and Evidentiary Support of Domestication Patterns

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genetic diversity of melon market types (Cucumis melo L., 2n = 2x = 24) in China, an important secondary center of diversity, has not been examined. Therefore, reference accessions (India, Africa, Crete/Greece, Japan, Europe, USA, and Spain) and 68 Chinese cultigens (fresh market non-netted thi...

  12. Phytoextraction of weathered p,p'-DDE by zucchini (Cucurbita pepo) and cucumber (Cucumis sativus) under different cultivation conditions.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiaoping; White, Jason C; Gent, Martin P N; Iannucci-Berger, William; Eitzer, Brian D; Mattina, MaryJane Incorvia

    2004-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that zucchini (Cucurbita pepo) and cucumber (Cucumis sativus) under field conditions are good and poor accumulators, respectively, of persistent organic pollutants from soil. Here, each species was grown under three cultivation regimes: dense (five plants in 5 kg soil): nondense (one plant in 80 kg soil): and field conditions (two to three plants in approximately 789 kg soil). p,p'-DDE and inorganic element content in roots, stems, leaves, and fruit were determined. In addition. rhizosphere, near-root, and unvegetated soil fractions were analyzed for concentrations of 11 low-molecular-weight organic acids (LMWOA) and 14 water-extractable inorganic elements. Under field conditions, zucchini phytoextracted 1.3% of the weathered p,p'-DDE with 98% of the contaminant in the aerial tissues. Conversely, cucumber removed 0.09% of the p,p'-DDE under field conditions with 83% in the aerial tissues. Under dense cultivation, cucumber produced a fine and fibrous root system not observed in our previous experiments and phytoextracted 0.78% of the contaminant, whereas zucchini removed only 0.59% under similar conditions. However. cucumber roots translocated only 5.7% of the pollutant to the shoot system, while in zucchini 48% of the p,p'-DDE in the plant was present in the aerial tissue. For each species, the concentrations of LMWOA in soil increased with increasing impact by the root system both within a given cultivation regime (i.e., rhizosphere > near-root > unvegetated) and across cultivation regimes (i.e., dense > nondense > field conditions). Under dense cultivation, the rhizosphere concentrations of LMWOAs were significantly greater for cucumber than for zucchini; no species differences were evident in the other two cultivation regimes. To enable direct comparison across cultivation regimes, total in planta p,p'-DDE and inorganic elements were mass normalized or multiplied by the ratio of plant mass to soil mass. For cucumber, differences in

  13. Backcross introgression of plastomic factors controlling chilling tolerance into elite cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) germplasm: Early generation recovery of recurrent parent phenotytpe

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Environmental stresses such as chilling temperatures can decrease germination, emergence, flower and fruit development, marketable yield, and postharvest fruit storage longevity in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). While response to chilling injury in cucumber is controlled by simple plastidic (matern...

  14. An experimental design approach to the chemical characterisation of pectin polysaccharides extracted from Cucumis melo Inodorus.

    PubMed

    Denman, Laura J; Morris, Gordon A

    2015-03-01

    Extracted pectins have been utilised in a number of applications in both the food and pharmaceutical industries where they are generally used as gelling agents, thickeners and stabilisers, although a number of pectins have been shown to be bioactive. These functional properties will depend upon extraction conditions. A statistical experimental design approach was used to study the effects of extraction conditions pH, time and temperature on pectins extracted from Cucumis melo Inodorus. The results show that the chemical composition is very sensitive to these conditions and that this has a great influence on for example the degree of branching. Higher temperatures, lower pHs and longer extraction times lead to a loss of the more acid labile arabinofuranose residues present on the pectin side chain. The fitting of regression equations relating yield and composition to extraction conditions can therefore lead to tailor-made pectins for specific properties and/or applications. PMID:25498647

  15. Optical properties of the iridescent organ of the comb-jellyfish Beroë cucumis (Ctenophora)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welch, Victoria; Vigneron, Jean Pol; Lousse, Virginie; Parker, Andrew

    2006-04-01

    Using transmission electron microscopy, analytical modeling, and detailed numerical simulations, the iridescence observed from the comb rows of the ctenophore Beroë cucumis was investigated. It is shown that the changing coloration which accompanies the beating of comb rows as the animal swims can be explained by the weakly-contrasted structure of the refractive index induced by the very coherent packing of locomotory cilia. The colors arising from the narrow band-gap reflection are shown to be highly saturated and, as a function of the incidence angle, cover a wide range of the visible and ultraviolet spectrum. The high transparency of the structure at the maximal bioluminescence wavelength is also explained.

  16. Free Radical Scavenging and Analgesic Activities of Cucumis sativus L. Fruit Extract

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, D; Kumar, S; Singh, J; Narender; Rashmi; Vashistha, BD; Singh, N

    2010-01-01

    The aqueous fruit extract of Cucumis sativus L. was screened for free radical scavenging and analgesic activities. The extract was subjected to in vitro antioxidant studies at 250 and 500 μg/ml and analgesic study at the doses 250 and 500 mg/kg, respectively. The free radical scavenging was compared with ascorbic acid, BHA (Butylated hydroxyl anisole), whereas, the analgesic effect was compared with Diclofenac sodium (50 mg/kg). The C. sativus fruit extract showed maximum antioxidant and analgesic effect at 500 μg/ml and 500 mg/kg, respectively. The presence of flavonoids and tannins in the extract as evidenced by preliminary phytochemical screening suggests that these compounds might be responsible for free radical scavenging and analgesic effects. PMID:21264095

  17. PCR-based identification of eight Lactobacillus species and 18 hr-HPV genotypes in fixed cervical samples of South African women at risk of HIV and BV.

    PubMed

    Dols, Joke A M; Reid, Gregor; Kort, Remco; Schuren, Frank H J; Tempelman, Hugo; Bontekoe, Tj Romke; Korporaal, Hans; Van der Veer, E M; Smit, Pieter W; Boon, Mathilde E

    2012-06-01

    Vaginal lactobacilli assessed by PCR-based microarray and PCR-based genotyping of HPV in South African women at risk for HIV and BV. Vaginal lactobacilli can be defined by microarray techniques in fixed cervical samples of South African women. Cervical brush samples suspended in the coagulant fixative BoonFix of one hundred women attending a health centre for HIV testing in South Africa were available for this study. In the Ndlovu Medical Centre in Elandsdoorn, South Africa, identification of 18 hr-HPV genotypes was done using the INNO-LiPA method. An inventory of lactobacilli organisms was performed using microarray technology. On the basis of the Lactobacillus and Lactobacillus biofilm scoring, the cases were identified as Leiden bacterial vaginosis (BV) negative (BV-; n = 41), Leiden BV intermediate (BV±; n = 25), and Leiden BV positive (BV+; n = 34). Fifty-one women were HIV positive and 49 HIV negative. Out of the 51 HIV positive women, 35 were HPV infected. These 51 HIV positive women were frequently infected with HPV16 and HPV18. In addition, HPV35, HPV52, HPV33, and HPV66 were often detected in these samples. Lactobacillus salivarius and Lactobacillus iners were the most prevalent lactobacilli as established by the microarray technique. In women with HPV infection, the prevalence of Lactobacillus crispatus was significantly reduced. In both HIV and HPV infection, a similar (but not identical) shift in the composition of the lactobacillus flora was observed. We conclude that there is a shift in the composition of vaginal lactobacilli in HIV-infected women. Because of the prominence of HPV35, HPV52, HPV33, and HPV66, vaccination for exclusively HPV16 and HPV18 might be insufficient in South African HIV+ women. PMID:22021225

  18. Cucumis melo endornavirus: Genome organization, host range and co-divergence with the host.

    PubMed

    Sabanadzovic, Sead; Wintermantel, William M; Valverde, Rodrigo A; McCreight, James D; Aboughanem-Sabanadzovic, Nina

    2016-03-01

    A high molecular weight dsRNA was isolated from a Cucumis melo L. plant (referred to as 'CL01') of an unknown cultivar and completely sequenced. Sequence analyses showed that dsRNA is associated with an endornavirus for which a name Cucumis melo endornavirus (CmEV) is proposed. The genome of CmEV-CL01 consists of 15,078 nt, contains a single, 4939 codons-long ORF and terminates with a stretch of 10 cytosine residues. Comparisons of the putative CmEV-encoded polyprotein with available references in protein databases revealed a unique genome organization characterized by the presence of the following domains: viral helicase Superfamily 1 (Hel-1), three glucosyltransferases (doublet of putative capsular polysaccharide synthesis proteins and a putative C_28_Glycosyltransferase), and an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). The presence of three glycome-related domains of different origin makes the genome organization of CmEV unique among endornaviruses. Phylogenetic analyses of viral RdRp domains showed that CmEV belongs to a specific lineage within the family Endornaviridae made exclusively of plant-infecting endornaviruses. An RT-PCR based survey demonstrated high incidence of CmEV among melon germplasm accession (>87% of tested samples). Analyses of partial genome sequences of CmEV isolates from 26 different melon genotypes suggest fine-tuned virus adaptation and co-divergence with the host. Finally, results of the present study revealed that CmEV is present in plants belonging to three different genera in the family Cucurbitaceae. Such diverse host range is unreported for known endornaviruses and suggests a long history of CmEV association with cucurbits predating their speciation. PMID:26805037

  19. African Aesthetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abiodun, Rowland

    2001-01-01

    No single traditional discipline can adequately supply answers to the many unresolved questions in African art history. Because of the aesthetic, cultural, historical, and, not infrequently, political biases, already built into the conception and development of Western art history, the discipline of art history as defined and practiced in the West…

  20. An oligo-based microarray offers novel transcriptomic approaches for the analysis of pathogen resistance and fruit quality traits in melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    PubMed Central

    Mascarell-Creus, Albert; Cañizares, Joaquin; Vilarrasa-Blasi, Josep; Mora-García, Santiago; Blanca, José; Gonzalez-Ibeas, Daniel; Saladié, Montserrat; Roig, Cristina; Deleu, Wim; Picó-Silvent, Belén; López-Bigas, Nuria; Aranda, Miguel A; Garcia-Mas, Jordi; Nuez, Fernando; Puigdomènech, Pere; Caño-Delgado, Ana I

    2009-01-01

    Background Melon (Cucumis melo) is a horticultural specie of significant nutritional value, which belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family, whose economic importance is second only to the Solanaceae. Its small genome of approx. 450 Mb coupled to the high genetic diversity has prompted the development of genetic tools in the last decade. However, the unprecedented existence of a transcriptomic approaches in melon, highlight the importance of designing new tools for high-throughput analysis of gene expression. Results We report the construction of an oligo-based microarray using a total of 17,510 unigenes derived from 33,418 high-quality melon ESTs. This chip is particularly enriched with genes that are expressed in fruit and during interaction with pathogens. Hybridizations for three independent experiments allowed the characterization of global gene expression profiles during fruit ripening, as well as in response to viral and fungal infections in plant cotyledons and roots, respectively. Microarray construction, statistical analyses and validation together with functional-enrichment analysis are presented in this study. Conclusion The platform validation and enrichment analyses shown in our study indicate that this oligo-based microarray is amenable for future genetic and functional genomic studies of a wide range of experimental conditions in melon. PMID:19821986

  1. High light inhibits chlorophyll biosynthesis at the level of 5-aminolevulinate synthesis during de-etiolation in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) cotyledons.

    PubMed

    Aarti, D; Tanaka, R; Ito, H; Tanaka, A

    2007-01-01

    Using the vascular plant Cucumis sativus (cucumber) as a model, we studied the effects of high (intense and excess) light upon chlorophyll biosynthesis during de-etiolation. When illuminated with high light (1500-1600 microE/m2/s), etiolated cucumber cotyledons failed to synthesize chlorophyll entirely. However, upon transfer to low light conditions (40-45 microE/m2/s), chlorophyll biosynthesis and subsequent accumulation resumed following an initial 2-12 h delay. Duration of high light treatment negatively correlated with chlorophyll biosynthetic activity. Specifically, we found that high light severely inhibited 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) synthesis. This effect partly could be because of the decrease in protein level of glutamyl-tRNA reductase (GluTR) observed. Protein level of glutamate-1-semialdehyde (GSA-AT) remained unchanged. It was also found that high light did not suppress HEMA 1 expression. Therefore, we speculated that this significant inhibition of ALA synthesis might have occurred mainly because of concomitant inactivation of GluTR and/or inhibition of complex formation between GluTR and GSA-AT. Our further observation that both methyl viologen and rose bengal similarly inhibit ALA synthesis under low light conditions suggested that reactive oxygen species (ROS) could be responsible for the inhibition of ALA synthesis in cotyledons exposed to high light conditions. PMID:16922603

  2. Annulotrema (Monogenea: Dactylogyridae) from the gills of African tetras (Characiformes: Alestidae) in Lake Turkana, Kenya, with descriptions of four new species and a redescription of A. elongata Paperna and Thurston, 1969.

    PubMed

    Kičinjaová, Maria Lujza; Blažek, Radim; Gelnar, Milan; Řehulková, Eva

    2015-11-01

    Four new and four previously described species of Annulotrema were collected from the gills of four species (three genera, i.e. Alestes, Hydrocynus and Brycinus) of African tetras from Lake Turkana, Kenya: Annulotrema alestesnursi Paperna, 1973 from Brycinus nurse; Annulotrema ansatum n. sp., Annulotrema besalis Řehulková, Musilová and Gelnar, 2014, Annulotrema bipatens n. sp., Annulotrema cucullatum n. sp., Annulotrema nili Paperna, 1973, and Annulotrema pontile n. sp. from Hydrocynus forskahlii; and Annulotrema elongata Paperna and Thurston, 1969 from Alestes baremoze and Alestes dentex. A. elongata is re-described on the basis of new material from A. baremoze. The sclerotized structures of the haptor and male copulatory organ of A. alestesnursi and A. elongata are illustrated from their type material. H. forskahlii is a new host record for A. besalis. The findings of A. besalis and A. elongata in Kenya represent a new locality records for these helminths. Three Annulotrema spp., namely A. besalis, A. elongata and A. pontile n. sp., share the same type of male copulatory organ, which may indicate a close relationship among these species. PMID:26346450

  3. Obesity and African Americans

    MedlinePlus

    ... Data > Minority Population Profiles > Black/African American > Obesity Obesity and African Americans African American women have the ... ss6304.pdf [PDF | 3.38MB] HEALTH IMPACT OF OBESITY More than 80 percent of people with type ...

  4. Two new species of African suckermouth catfishes, genus Chiloglanis (Siluriformes: Mochokidae), from Kenya with remarks on other taxa from the area.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Ray C; Bart, Henry L; Nyingi, Wanja Dorothy

    2015-01-01

    Recent expeditions in Kenya and examination of existing collections confirmed the presence of two undescribed Chiloglanis species and revealed previously unknown diversity within the Athi River system. The two new species are easily distinguished from described congeners in the area by external morphology, allopatric distributions, and genetic markers. Chiloglanis kerioensis sp. nov., is restricted to the Kerio River system and is the only known suckermouth catfish from the Lake Turkana basin. Chiloglanis devosi sp. nov., is known only from the type locality, the Northern Ewaso Nyiro (Ng'iro) below Chanler's Falls. In addition to these two new species, this study confirmed the presence of an undescribed Chiloglanis sp. occurring sympatrically with Chiloglanis brevibarbis in the Tsavo River. A dichotomous key for identifying all described Chiloglanis species found within Kenya is presented along with comments. PMID:26624701

  5. A molecular phylogeny of Equatorial African Lacertidae, with the description of a new genus and species from eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo

    PubMed Central

    Greenbaum, Eli; Villanueva, Cesar O.; Kusamba, Chifundera; Aristote, Mwenebatu M.; Branch, William R.

    2011-01-01

    Currently, four species of the lacertid lizard genus Adolfus are known from Central and East Africa. We sequenced up to 2,825 bp of two mitochondrial (16S and cyt b) and two nuclear (c-mos and RAG1) genes from 41 samples of Adolfus (representing every species), two species each of Gastropholis and Holaspis, and in separate analyses combined this data with GenBank sequences of all other Eremiadini genera and four Lacertini outgroups. Data from DNA sequences were analyzed with maximum parsimony (PAUP), maximum-likelihood (RAxML) and Bayesian inference (MrBayes) criteria. Results demonstrated that Adolfus is not monophyletic: A. africanus (type species), A. alleni and A. jacksoni are sister taxa, whereas A. vauereselli and a new species from the Itombwe Plateau of Democratic Republic of the Congo are in a separate lineage. Holaspis and Gastropholis were recovered in separate clades. Based on this molecular data, relatively substantial sequence divergence and multiple morphological differences, we describe a new genus of lacertid for the lineage including A. vauereselli and the new Itombwe species. The recognition of this new, endemic genus underscores the conservation importance of the Albertine Rift, especially the Itombwe Plateau, a unique region that is severely threatened by unchecked deforestation, mining and poaching. PMID:22121299

  6. Molecular Differentiation of the African Yellow Fever Vector Aedes bromeliae (Diptera: Culicidae) from Its Sympatric Non-vector Sister Species, Aedes lilii

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Kelly Louise; Linton, Yvonne-Marie; Shija, Fortunate; Kaddumukasa, Martha; Djouaka, Rousseau; Misinzo, Gerald; Lutwama, Julius; Huang, Yiau-Min; Mitchell, Luke B.; Richards, Miriam; Tossou, Eric; Walton, Catherine

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Yellow fever continues to be a problem in sub-Saharan Africa with repeated epidemics occurring. The mosquito Aedes bromeliae is a major vector of yellow fever, but it cannot be readily differentiated from its non-vector zoophilic sister species Ae. lilii using morphological characters. Genetic differences have been reported between anthropophilic Ae. bromeliae and zoophilic Ae. lilii and between forest and domestic populations. However, due to the application of different molecular markers and non-overlapping populations employed in previous studies, interpretation of species delimitation is unclear. Methodology/Principle Findings DNA sequences were generated from specimens of Ae. simpsoni s.l. from the Republic of Benin, Tanzania and Uganda for two nuclear genes apolipophorin 2 (apoLp2) and cytochrome p450 (CYPJ92), the ribosomal internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) and the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase (COI) barcoding region. Nuclear genes apoLp2 and CYPJ92 were unable to differentiate between species Ae. bromeliae and Ae. lilii due to ancestral lineage sorting, while ITS sequence data provided clear topological separation on a phylogeny. The standard COI barcoding region was shown to be subject to species introgression and unable to clearly distinguish the two taxa. Here we present a reliable direct PCR-based method for differentiation of the vector species Ae. bromeliae from its isomorphic, sympatric and non-biomedically important sister taxon, Ae. lilii, based on the ITS region. Using molecular species verification, we describe novel immature habitats for Ae. lilii and report both sympatric and allopatric populations. Whereas only Ae. lilii is found in the Republic of Benin and only Ae. bromeliae in Tanzania, both species are sympatric in Uganda. Conclusions/Significance Our accurate identification method will allow informed distribution and detailed ecological studies that will facilitate assessment of arboviral disease risk and

  7. Comparative Transcriptomics in East African Cichlids Reveals Sex- and Species-Specific Expression and New Candidates for Sex Differentiation in Fishes

    PubMed Central

    Böhne, Astrid; Sengstag, Thierry; Salzburger, Walter

    2014-01-01

    Males and females of the same species differ largely in gene expression, which accounts for most of the morphological and physiological differences and sex-specific phenotypes. Here, we analyzed sex-specific gene expression in the brain and the gonads of cichlid fishes from Lake Tanganyika belonging to four different lineages, so-called tribes (Eretmodini, Ectodini, Haplochromini, and Lamprologini), using the outgroup Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) as reference. The comparison between male and female brains revealed few differences between the sexes, consistent in all investigated species. The gonads, on the other hand, showed a large fraction of differentially expressed transcripts with the majority of them showing the same direction of expression in all four species. All here-studied cichlids, especially the three investigated mouth-breeding species, showed a trend toward more male- than female-biased transcripts. Transcripts, which were female-biased in expression in all four species, were overrepresented on linkage group (LG)1 in the reference genome and common male-biased transcripts showed accumulation on LG23, the presumable sex chromosomes of the Nile tilapia. Sex-specific transcripts contained candidate genes for sex determination and differentiation in fishes, especially members of the transforming growth factor-β-superfamily and the Wnt-pathway and also prominent members of the sox-, dm-domain-, and high mobility group-box families. We further confirmed our previous finding on species/lineage-specific gene expression shifts in the sex steroid pathway, including synthesizing enzymes as the aromatase cyp19a1 and estrogen and androgen receptors. PMID:25364805

  8. Phytochrome, Gibberellins, and Hypocotyl Growth (A Study Using the Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) long hypocotyl Mutant).

    PubMed Central

    Lopez-Juez, E.; Kobayashi, M.; Sakurai, A.; Kamiya, Y.; Kendrick, R. E.

    1995-01-01

    The possible involvement of gibberellins (GAs) in the regulation of hypocotyl elongation by phytochrome was examined. Under white light the tall long hypocotyl (lh) cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) mutant, deficient in a type B-like phytochrome, shows an increased "responsiveness" (defined as response capability) to applied GA4 (the main endogenous active GA) compared to the wild type. Supplementing far-red irradiation results in a similar increase in responsiveness in the wild type. Experiments involving application of the precursor GA9 and of an inhibitor of GA4 inactivation suggest that both the GA4 activation and inactivation steps are phytochrome independent. Endogenous GA levels of whole seedlings were analyzed by combined gas chromatography-mass spectrometry using deuterated internal standards. The levels of GA4 (and those of GA34, the inactivated GA4) were lower in the lh mutant under low-irradiance fluorescent light compared with the wild type, similar to wild type under higher irradiance light during the initial hypocotyl extension phase, and higher during the phase of sustained growth, in which extension involved an increase in the number of cells in the upper region. In all cases, growth of the lh mutant was more rapid than that of the wild type. It is proposed that GA4 and phytochrome control cell elongation primarily through separate mechanisms that interact at a step close to the terminal response. PMID:12228348

  9. Functional Characterization of Cucumis metuliferus Proteinase Inhibitor Gene (CmSPI) in Potyviruses Resistance.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chia-Wei; Su, Mei-Hsiu; Lin, Yu-Tsung; Chung, Chien-Hung; Ku, Hsin-Mei

    2015-07-01

    Proteinase inhibitors are ubiquitous proteins that block the active center or interact allosterically with proteinases and are involved in plant physiological processes and defense responses to biotic and abiotic stresses. The CmSPI gene identified from Cucumis metuliferus encodes a serine type PI (8 kDa) that belongs to potato I type family. To evaluate the effect of silencing CmSPI gene on Papaya ringspot virus resistance, RNA interference (RNAi) with an inter-space hairpin RNA (ihpRNA) construct was introduced into a PRSV-resistant C. metuliferus line. CmSPI was down-regulated in CmSPI RNAi transgenic lines in which synchronously PRSV symptoms were evident at 21 day post inoculation. Alternatively, heterogeneous expression of CmSPI in Nicotiana benthamiana was also conducted and showed that CmSPI can provide resistance to Potato virus Y, another member of Potyvirus, in transgenic N. benthamiana lines. This study demonstrated that CmSPI plays an important role in resistant function against potyviruses in C. metuliferus and N. benthamiana. PMID:26184285

  10. [Daily temperature gradients and processes of organogenesis in apical meristem of Cucumis sativus L].

    PubMed

    Markovskaia, E F; Sysoeva, M I; Vasilevskaia, N V

    2007-01-01

    We studied the influence of daily temperature gradients on organogenesis in apical and axil shoot meristems at different developmental stages in Cucumis sativus L. The level of organogenic activity of meristems was determined according to the number of leaf primordia on the main and lateral shoots, number of 2nd order shoots, and rudiments of flowers of different levels of development. At the studied ontogenetic stages (mesotrophic seedling or juvenile state), plants were grown under the controlled conditions: photoperiod 12 h, light intensity 100 Wt/m2, range of mean daily temperatures 20 ... 30 degrees C, and daily temperature gradients -20 ... +20 degrees C. After the temperature treatment, some plants were returned to the optimal, for growth and development, conditions for two weeks (aftereffect). Three types of organogenic activity of meristems in response to the influence of variable daily temperatures were described: stimulation, inhibition, or absence of effect. The phenomenon of stimulation includes two subtypes: optimization, when a maximum effect, observed at other constant temperatures, was attained under the influence of variable temperatures and maximization, when maximum values markedly exceeded those at constant temperatures. The patterns described are preserved on the whole in the aftereffect of daily temperatures. PMID:17352290

  11. Chilling-Induced Lipid Degradation in Cucumber (Cucumis sativa L. cv Hybrid C) Fruit 1

    PubMed Central

    Parkin, Kirk L.; Kuo, Shu-Jung

    1989-01-01

    Chilling at 4°C in the dark induced lipid degradation in cucumber (Cucumis sativa L.) fruit upon rewarming at 14°C. Rates of ethane evolution by fruits rewarmed after 3 days of chilling were up to four-fold higher than those evolved by unchilled (14°C) fruits (0.02-0.05 picomoles gram fresh weight−1 hour−1). This potentiation of lipid peroxidation occurred prior to irreversible injury (requiring 3 to 7 days of chilling) as indicated by increases in ethylene evolution and visual observations. Decreases in unsaturation of peel tissue glycolipids were observed in fruits rewarmed after 3 days of chilling, indicating the plastids to be the site of the early phases of chilling-induced peroxidation. Losses in unsaturation of tissue phospholipids were first observed only after chilling for 7 days. Phospholipase D activity appeared to be potentiated in fruits rewarmed after 7 days of chilling as indicated by a decrease in phosphatidylcholine (and secondarily phosphatidylethanolamine) with a corresponding increase in phosphatidic acid. These results indicate that lipid peroxidation may have a role in conferring chilling injury. PMID:16666850

  12. Expression Profiling of Cucumis sativus in Response to Infection by Pseudoperonospora cubensis

    PubMed Central

    Vaillancourt, Brieanne; Childs, Kevin L.; Hamilton, John P.; Day, Brad; Buell, C. Robin

    2012-01-01

    The oomycete pathogen, Pseudoperonospora cubensis, is the causal agent of downy mildew on cucurbits, and at present, no effective resistance to this pathogen is available in cultivated cucumber (Cucumis sativus). To better understand the host response to a virulent pathogen, we performed expression profiling throughout a time course of a compatible interaction using whole transcriptome sequencing. As described herein, we were able to detect the expression of 15,286 cucumber genes, of which 14,476 were expressed throughout the infection process from 1 day post-inoculation (dpi) to 8 dpi. A large number of genes, 1,612 to 3,286, were differentially expressed in pair-wise comparisons between time points. We observed the rapid induction of key defense related genes, including catalases, chitinases, lipoxygenases, peroxidases, and protease inhibitors within 1 dpi, suggesting detection of the pathogen by the host. Co-expression network analyses revealed transcriptional networks with distinct patterns of expression including down-regulation at 2 dpi of known defense response genes suggesting coordinated suppression of host responses by the pathogen. Comparative analyses of cucumber gene expression patterns with that of orthologous Arabidopsis thaliana genes following challenge with Hyaloperonospora arabidopsidis revealed correlated expression patterns of single copy orthologs suggesting that these two dicot hosts have similar transcriptional responses to related pathogens. In total, the work described herein presents an in-depth analysis of the interplay between host susceptibility and pathogen virulence in an agriculturally important pathosystem. PMID:22545095

  13. mRNA-Seq analysis of the Pseudoperonospora cubensis transcriptome during cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) infection.

    PubMed

    Savory, Elizabeth A; Adhikari, Bishwo N; Hamilton, John P; Vaillancourt, Brieanne; Buell, C Robin; Day, Brad

    2012-01-01

    Pseudoperonospora cubensis, an oomycete, is the causal agent of cucurbit downy mildew, and is responsible for significant losses on cucurbit crops worldwide. While other oomycete plant pathogens have been extensively studied at the molecular level, Ps. cubensis and the molecular basis of its interaction with cucurbit hosts has not been well examined. Here, we present the first large-scale global gene expression analysis of Ps. cubensis infection of a susceptible Cucumis sativus cultivar, 'Vlaspik', and identification of genes with putative roles in infection, growth, and pathogenicity. Using high throughput whole transcriptome sequencing, we captured differential expression of 2383 Ps. cubensis genes in sporangia and at 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 8 days post-inoculation (dpi). Additionally, comparison of Ps. cubensis expression profiles with expression profiles from an infection time course of the oomycete pathogen Phytophthora infestans on Solanum tuberosum revealed similarities in expression patterns of 1,576-6,806 orthologous genes suggesting a substantial degree of overlap in molecular events in virulence between the biotrophic Ps. cubensis and the hemi-biotrophic P. infestans. Co-expression analyses identified distinct modules of Ps. cubensis genes that were representative of early, intermediate, and late infection stages. Collectively, these expression data have advanced our understanding of key molecular and genetic events in the virulence of Ps. cubensis and thus, provides a foundation for identifying mechanism(s) by which to engineer or effect resistance in the host. PMID:22545137

  14. Effect of Cervus and Cucumis Peptides on Osteoblast Activity and Fracture Healing in Osteoporotic Bone

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Ai-Yuan; Tian, Yue; Yuan, Mei; Zhang, Li; Chen, Ji-Feng; Xu, Wen-Jing; Meng, Hao-Ye; Yu, Xiao-Ming; Wang, Yao-Qin; Guo, Quan-Yi; Lu, Shi-Bi; Peng, Jiang; Wang, Yu

    2014-01-01

    Osteoporosis is associated with delayed and/or reduced fracture healing. As cervus and cucumis are the traditional Chinese treatments for rheumatoid arthritis, we investigated the effect of supplementation of these peptides (CCP) on bone fracture healing in ovariectomized (OVX) osteoporotic rats in vitro and in vivo. CCP enhanced osteoblast proliferation and increased alkaline phosphatase activity, matrix mineralization, and expression of runt-related transcription factor 2 (Runx2), bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4), and osteopontin. In vivo, female Sprague-Dawley rats underwent ovariectomy and the right femora were fractured and fixed by intramedullary nailing 3 months later. Rats received intraperitoneal injections of either CCP (1.67 mg/kg) or physiological saline every day for 30 days. Fracture healing and callus formation were evaluated by radiography, micro-CT, biomechanical testing, and histology. At 12 weeks after fracture, calluses in CCP-treated bones showed significantly higher torsional strength and greater stiffness than control-treated bones. Bones in CCP-treated rats reunified and were thoroughly remodeled, while two saline-treated rats showed no bone union and incomplete remodeling. Taken together, these results indicate that use of CCP after fracture in osteoporotic rats accelerates mineralization and osteogenesis and improves fracture healing. PMID:25525453

  15. Measurement of heme efflux and heme content in isolated developing chloroplasts. [Cucumis sativus, cv. Sumter

    SciTech Connect

    Thomas, J.; Weinstein, J.D. )

    1990-11-01

    Hemes destined for cytosolic hemoproteins must originate in one of the cellular compartments which have the capacity for heme synthesis, namely the chloroplast or the mitochondria. Since developing chloroplasts from greening cucumber (Cucumis sativus, cv. Sumter) cotyledons are known to contain complete heme and chlorophyll biosynthetic pathways, they were tested for their capacity export hemes. Picomole quantities of heme were measured by reconstitution of the heme with apo-peroxidase and subsequent determination of peroxidase activity. The assay method was sensitive (as little as 0.7 picomole of heme could be detected in a volume of 100 microliters) and was linear with heme concentration. When intact plastids were incubated with apo-peroxidase, a steady-state rate of efflux between 0.12 and 0.45 picomole heme/minute/milligram plastid protein was measured. The efflux rate was not due to plastid breakage and could be enhanced by incubating with the heme precursor, {delta}-aminolevulinic acid. Cold acetone extraction removed 47 {plus minus} 17 picomoles heme/milligram plastid protein from the total b-type heme pool in the chloroplasts (166 {plus minus} 9 picomoles heme/milligram protein, by acid-acetone extraction). The reconstitution technique provided a similar estimate of readily exchangeable heme in the plastid, 37 {plus minus} 8 picomoles heme/milligram protein (or 6 micromolar in the plastids). These values may be indicative of a free heme pool which exists in the chloroplast.

  16. Use of Cucumis metuliferus as a Rootstock for Melon to Manage Meloidogyne incognita

    PubMed Central

    Sigüenza, Concepcion; Schochow, Martin; Turini, Tom; Ploeg, Antoon

    2005-01-01

    Root-knot nematode-susceptible melons (Cantaloupe) were grown in pots with varying levels of Meloidogyne incognita and were compared to susceptible melons that were grafted onto Cucumis metuliferus or Cucurbita moschata rootstocks. In addition, the effect of using melons as transplants in nematode-infested soil was compared to direct seeding of melons in nematode-infested soil. There were no differences in shoot or root weight, or severity of root galling between transplanted and direct-seeded non-grafted susceptible melon in nematode-infested soil. Susceptible melon grafted on C. moschata rootstocks had lower root gall ratings and, at high nematode densities, higher shoot weights than non-grafted susceptible melons. However, final nematode levels were not lower on the grafted than on the non-grafted plants, and it was therefore concluded that grafting susceptible melon on to C. moschata rootstock made the plants tolerant, but not resistant, to the nematodes. Grafting susceptible melons on C. metuliferus rootstocks also reduced levels of root galling, prevented shoot weight losses, and resulted in significantly lower nematode levels at harvest. Thus, C. metuliferus may be used as a rootstock for melon to prevent both growth reduction and a strong nematode buildup in M. incognita-infested soil. PMID:19262873

  17. Transcriptome profiling of trichome-less reveals genes associated with multicellular trichome development in Cucumis sativus.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jun-Long; Wang, Yun-Li; Yao, Dan-Qing; Zhu, Wen-Ying; Chen, Long; He, Huan-Le; Pan, Jun-Song; Cai, Run

    2015-10-01

    Trichomes on plants, similar to fine hairs on animal and human bodies, play important roles in plant survival and development. They also represent a useful model for the study of cell differentiation. Although the regulatory gene network of unicellular trichome development in Arabidopsis thaliana has been well studied, the genes that regulate multicellular trichome development remain unclear. We confirmed that Cucumis sativus (cucumber) trichomes are multicellular and unbranched, but identified a spontaneous mutant, trichome-less (tril), which presented a completely glabrous phenotype. We compared the transcriptome profilings of the tril mutant and wild type using the Illumina HiSeq 2000 sequencing technology. A total of 991 genes exhibited differential expression: 518 were up-regulated and 473 were down-regulated. We further identified 62 differentially expressed genes that encoded crucial transcription factors and were subdivided into seven categories: homeodomain, MADS, MYB, and WRKY domains, ethylene-responsive, zinc finger, and other transcription factor genes. We further analyzed the tissue-expression profiles of two candidate genes, GLABRA2-like and ATHB51-like, using qRT-PCR and found that these two genes were specifically expressed in the epidermis and trichomes, respectively. These results and the tril mutant provide useful tools to study the molecular networks associated with multicellular trichome development. PMID:25952908

  18. Cucurbitacins-type triterpene with potent activity on mouse embryonic fibroblast from Cucumis prophetarum, cucurbitaceae

    PubMed Central

    Ayyad, Seif-Eldin N.; Abdel-Lateff, Ahmed; Basaif, Salim A.; Shier, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Background: Higher plants are considered as a well-known source of the potent anticancer metabolites with diversity of chemical structures. For instance, taxol is an amazing diterpene alkaloid had been lunched since 1990. Objective: To isolate the major compounds from the fruit extract of Cucumis prophetarum, Cucurbitaceae, which are mainly responsible for the bioactivities as anticancer. Materials and Methods: Plant material was shady air dried, extracted with equal volume of chloroform/methanol, and fractionated with different adsorbents. The structures of obtained pure compounds were elucidated with different spectroscopic techniques employing 1D (1H and 13C) and 2D (COSY, HMQC and HMBC) NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectrometry) and ESI-MS (Eelectrospray Ionization Mass Spectrometry) spectroscopy. The pure isolates were tested towards human cancer cell lines, mouse embryonic fibroblast (NIH3T3) and virally transformed form (KA3IT). Results: Two cucurbitacins derivatives, dihydocucurbitacin B (1) and cucurbitacin B (2), had been obtained. Compounds 1 and 2 showed (showed potent inhibitory activities toward NIH3T3 and KA31T with IC50 0.2, 0.15, 2.5 and 2.0 μg/ml, respectively. Conclusion: The naturally cucurbitacin derivatives (dihydocucurbitacin B and cucurbitacin B) showed potent activities towards NIH3T3 and KA31T, could be considered as a lead of discovering a new anticancer natural drug. PMID:22022168

  19. Functional Characterization of Cucumis metuliferus Proteinase Inhibitor Gene (CmSPI) in Potyviruses Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Chia-Wei; Su, Mei-Hsiu; Lin, Yu-Tsung; Chung, Chien-Hung; Ku, Hsin-Mei

    2015-01-01

    Proteinase inhibitors are ubiquitous proteins that block the active center or interact allosterically with proteinases and are involved in plant physiological processes and defense responses to biotic and abiotic stresses. The CmSPI gene identified from Cucumis metuliferus encodes a serine type PI (8 kDa) that belongs to potato I type family. To evaluate the effect of silencing CmSPI gene on Papaya ringspot virus resistance, RNA interference (RNAi) with an inter-space hairpin RNA (ihpRNA) construct was introduced into a PRSV-resistant C. metuliferus line. CmSPI was down-regulated in CmSPI RNAi transgenic lines in which synchronously PRSV symptoms were evident at 21 day post inoculation. Alternatively, heterogeneous expression of CmSPI in Nicotiana benthamiana was also conducted and showed that CmSPI can provide resistance to Potato virus Y, another member of Potyvirus, in transgenic N. benthamiana lines. This study demonstrated that CmSPI plays an important role in resistant function against potyviruses in C. metuliferus and N. benthamiana. PMID:26184285

  20. Patterns of Assimilate Production and Translocation in Muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) 1

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Donald E.; Gadus, Michelle V.; Madore, Monica A.

    1992-01-01

    Continuous monitoring of steady-state carbon dioxide exchange rates in mature muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) leaves showed diurnal patterns of photosynthesis and respiration that were translated into distinct patterns of accumulation and phloem export of soluble sugars and amino acids. Leaf soluble sugar patterns in general followed the pattern of photosynthetic activity observed in the leaf, whereas starch accumulated steadily throughout the light period. Sugar and starch levels declined through the dark phase. Phloem exudate analysis revealed that diurnal levels of the major transport sugars (stachyose and sucrose) in the phloem did not appear to correlate directly with the photosynthetic activity of the leaf but instead were inversely correlated with leaf starch accumulation and degradation. The amino acid pool in leaf tissues remained constant throughout the diurnal period; however, the relative contribution of individual amino acids to the total pool varied with the diurnal photosynthetic and respiratory activity of the leaf. In contrast, the phloem sap amino acid pool size was substantially larger in the light than in the dark, a result primarily due to enhanced export of glutamine, glutamate, and citrulline during the light period. The results indicate that the sugar and amino acid composition of cucurbit phloem sap is not constant but varies throughout the diurnal cycle in response to the metabolic activities of the source leaf. PMID:16669025

  1. Africans in America.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Ayanna; Spangler, Earl

    This book introduces African-American history and culture to children. The first Africans in America came from many different regions and cultures, but became united in this country by being black, African, and slaves. Once in America, Africans began a long struggle for freedom which still continues. Slavery, the Civil War, emancipation, and the…

  2. African Outreach Workshop 1974.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmidt, Nancy J.

    This report discusses the 1974 African Outreach Workshop planned and coordinated by the African Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Its major aim was to assist teachers in developing curriculum units on African using materials available in their local community. A second aim was for the African Studies Program to…

  3. Sibling species distributions of the Simulium damnosum complex in the west African Onchocerciasis Control Programme area during the decade 1984-93, following intensive larviciding since 1974.

    PubMed

    Boakye, D A; Back, C; Fiasorgbor, G K; Sib, A P; Coulibaly, Y

    1998-10-01

    During the decade from 1984 to 1993, nine species of the Simulium damnosum complex of blackflies (Diptera: Simuliidae) were identified from the area covered by the Onchocerciasis Control Programme. These were S. damnosum s.s., S. dieguerense, S. konkourense, S. leonense, S. sanctipauli, S. sirbanum, S. soubrense, S. squamosum, and S. yahense. Some of these species were found to consist of two chromosomal variant populations. These were S. konkourense 'Konkouré' and 'Menankaya' forms, S. sanctipauli sensu stricto and 'Djodji' form, S. soubrense 'Chute Milo' and 'Beffa' forms. The distribution of these twelve cytological taxa was assessed in relation to the two main vegetation zones of West Africa (forest and savanna), topography, river size and other factors. The range of each species was influenced by seasonal climatic changes in wind movement and river water level. The most widely distributed species were S. sirbanum and S. damnosum s.s., associated with savanna areas, recorded from all river basins. Simulium dieguerense was restricted mainly to Western Mali on the Rivers Bafing and Bakoye in the Senegal River basin. Simulium squamosum was identified from rivers draining mountainous areas in both the forest and savanna zones. Simulium yahense was found in small permanent rivers along a wide forested band parallel to the coast and was absent from the plains of Togo and Benin. Members of the S. sanctipauli subcomplex had restricted distributions except for S. sanctipauli s.s., which was widespread in large rivers of the forest zone from Sierra Leone to the Volta Lake in Ghana. Simulium soubrense 'Beffa' form occurred in Togo and Benin, S. soubrense 'Chutes Milo' form in Guinea, both 'Konkouré' and 'Menankaya' forms of S. konkourense occurred predominantly in Guinea and S. leonense in Sierra Leone. The relevance of the distribution maps and the importance of the data bank to vector control larvicidal operations are discussed. PMID:9824818

  4. Cardiac assessment of African hedgehogs (Atelerix albiventris).

    PubMed

    Black, Peter A; Marshall, Cecilia; Seyfried, Alice W; Bartin, Anne M

    2011-03-01

    Cardiomyopathy is a common finding in captive African hedgehogs (Atelerix albiventris) at postmortem exam. To date, treatment attempts have been mostly empirical and unrewarding. The objective of this study was to determine reference cardiac values for captive African hedgehogs based on echocardiogram, electrocardiogram (ECG), and radiographs. Adult African hedgehogs with no clinical signs of cardiac disease (n = 13) were selected. Each animal was anesthetized with isoflurane via facemask and an echocardiogram, ECG, and radiographs were performed. Standard measurements were taken and the descriptive statistics performed. Values were comparable to limited data available in other hedgehog species and other similar-sized exotic species. Two animals were removed from consideration of reference values due to valvular defects that were considered significant. These data are the first establishing cardiac parameters in normal African hedgehogs using radiographic cardiac measurement, echocardiogram, and ECG. Evaluating animals with possible cardiomyopathy may allow for earlier diagnosis and more successful treatment. PMID:22946370

  5. African Adders: Partial Characterization of Snake Venoms from Three Bitis Species of Medical Importance and Their Neutralization by Experimental Equine Antivenoms

    PubMed Central

    Paixão-Cavalcante, Danielle; Kuniyoshi, Alexandre K.; Portaro, Fernanda C. V.; da Silva, Wilmar Dias; Tambourgi, Denise V.

    2015-01-01

    Background An alarming number of fatal accidents involving snakes are annually reported in Africa and most of the victims suffer from permanent local tissue damage and chronic disabilities. Envenomation by snakes belonging to the genus Bitis, Viperidae family, are common in Sub-Saharan Africa. The accidents are severe and the victims often have a poor prognosis due to the lack of effective specific therapies. In this study we have biochemically characterized venoms from three different species of Bitis, i.e., Bitis arietans, Bitis gabonica rhinoceros and Bitis nasicornis, involved in the majority of the human accidents in Africa, and analyzed the in vitro neutralizing ability of two experimental antivenoms. Methodology/Principal Findings The data indicate that all venoms presented phospholipase, hyaluronidase and fibrinogenolytic activities and cleaved efficiently the FRET substrate Abz-RPPGFSPFRQ-EDDnp and angiotensin I, generating angiotensin 1–7. Gelatinolytic activity was only observed in the venoms of B. arietans and B. nasicornis. The treatment of the venoms with protease inhibitors indicated that Bitis venoms possess metallo and serinoproteases enzymes, which may be involved in the different biological activities here evaluated. Experimental antivenoms produced against B. arietans venom or Bitis g. rhinoceros plus B. nasicornis venoms cross-reacted with the venoms from the three species and blocked, in different degrees, all the enzymatic activities in which they were tested. Conclusion These results suggest that the venoms of the three Bitis species, involved in accidents with humans in the Sub-Saharan Africa, contain a mixture of various enzymes that may act in the generation and development of some of the clinical manifestations of the envenomations. We also demonstrated that horse antivenoms produced against B. arietans or B. g. rhinoceros plus B. nasicornis venoms can blocked some of the toxic activities of these venoms. PMID:25643358

  6. Allozyme variation in four populations of African whitebacked vultures (Gyps africanus) and phylogenetic relationships between four vulture species from southern Africa.

    PubMed

    van Wyk, E; van der Bank, H; Verdoorn, G H.

    2001-05-01

    Genetic variation detected by protein electrophoresis at 41 presumptive gene loci was assayed in four populations of Gyps africanus and compared to values previously obtained for Gyps coprotheres. Values calculated for percentage of polymorphic loci (P=34.15%, 0.99 criterion) and average heterozygosity (&Hmacr;=0.108, +/-0.032) in G. africanus, confirm low levels of genetic variation as reported for G. coprotheres. Allele frequency data, assessed at 19 loci, were obtained to evaluate genetic differentiation among four vulture species. Six (31.58%) of the 19 shared loci were polymorphic. Values of 1.26 (+/-0.1), 26.32% and 0.076 (+/-0.047) for G. africanus, 1.21 (+/-0.1), 21.05% and 0.097 (+/-0.045) for Torgos tracheliotus, 1.11 (+/-0.7), 21.05% and 0.053 (+/-0.053) for Neophron percnopterus and 1.05 (+/-0.5), 5.26% and 0.044 (+/-0.047) for G. coprotheres were obtained for the mean number of alleles per locus, P and &Hmacr;, respectively. An average between-population fixation index (F(ST)) value of 0.322 was obtained, which is indicative of significant (P<0.01) differentiation between the four accipitrid species studied. Considerable concordance was obtained between dendograms produced from different analyses, pointing to the distinctiveness of N. percnopterus, which has evolved along a separate lineage as G. africanus, G. coprotheres and T. tracheliotus. Along the latter lineage G. africanus is clustered together with G. coprotheres which is consistent with the morphological similarities of these species. PMID:11274771

  7. The comparative phylogeography of fruit bats of the tribe Scotonycterini (Chiroptera, Pteropodidae) reveals cryptic species diversity related to African Pleistocene forest refugia.

    PubMed

    Hassanin, Alexandre; Khouider, Souraya; Gembu, Guy-Crispin; Goodman, Steven M; Kadjo, Blaise; Nesi, Nicolas; Pourrut, Xavier; Nakouné, Emmanuel; Bonillo, Céline

    2015-03-01

    The hypothesis of Pleistocene forest refugia was tested using comparative phylogeography of Scotonycterini, a fruit bat tribe endemic to Africa containing four species: Scotonycteris zenkeri, Casinycteris argynnis, C. campomaanensis, and C. ophiodon. Patterns of genetic structure were assessed using 105 Scotonycterini (including material from three holotypes) collected at 37 localities, and DNA sequences from the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene (1140 nt) and 12 nuclear introns (9641 nt). Phylogenetic trees and molecular dating were inferred by Bayesian methods. Multilocus analyses were performed using supermatrix, SuperTRI, and *BEAST approaches. Mitochondrial analyses reveal strong phylogeographical structure in Scotonycteris, with four divergent haplogroups (4.9-8.7%), from Upper Guinea, Cameroon, western Equatorial Africa, and eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). In C. argynnis, we identify two mtDNA haplogroups corresponding to western and eastern Equatorial Africa (1.4-2.1%). In C. ophiodon, the mtDNA haplotypes from Cameroon and Ivory Coast differ by only 1.3%. Nuclear analyses confirm the validity of the recently described C. campomaanensis and indicate that western and eastern populations of C. argynnis are not fully isolated. All mtDNA clusters detected in Scotonycteris are found to be monophyletic based on the nuclear dataset, except in eastern DRC. In the nuclear tree, the clade from western Equatorial Africa is closely related to individuals from eastern DRC, whereas in the mitochondrial tree it appears to be the sister-group of the Cameroon clade. Migrate-n analyses support gene flow from western Equatorial Africa to eastern DRC. Molecular dating indicates that Pleistocene forest refugia have played an important role in shaping the evolution of Scotonycterini, with two phases of allopatric speciation at approximately 2.7 and 1.6 Mya, resulting from isolation in three main forest areas corresponding to Upper Guinea, Cameroon, and Equatorial

  8. QTL mapping of powdery mildew resistance in WI 2757 cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.).

    PubMed

    He, Xiaoming; Li, Yuhong; Pandey, Sudhakar; Yandell, Brain S; Pathak, Mamta; Weng, Yiqun

    2013-08-01

    Powdery mildew (PM) is a very important disease of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). Resistant cultivars have been deployed in production for a long time, but the genetic mechanisms of PM resistance in cucumber are not well understood. A 3-year QTL mapping study of PM resistance was conducted with 132 F2:3 families derived from two cucumber inbred lines WI 2757 (resistant) and True Lemon (susceptible). A genetic map covering 610.4 cM in seven linkage groups was developed with 240 SSR marker loci. Multiple QTL mapping analysis of molecular marker data and disease index of the hypocotyl, cotyledon and true leaf for responses to PM inoculation identified six genomic regions in four chromosomes harboring QTL for PM resistance in WI 2757. Among the six QTL, pm1.1 and pm1.2 in chromosome 1 conferred leaf resistance. Minor QTL pm3.1 (chromosome 3) and pm4.1 (chromosome 4) contributed to disease susceptibility. The two major QTL, pm5.1 and pm5.2 were located in an interval of ~40 cM in chromosome 5 with each explaining 21.0-74.5 % phenotypic variations. Data presented herein support two recessively inherited, linked major QTL in chromosome 5 plus minor QTL in other chromosomes that control the PM resistance in WI 2757. The QTL pm5.2 for hypocotyl resistance plays the most important role in host resistance. Multiple observations in the same year revealed the importance of scoring time in the detection of PM resistance QTL. Results of this study provided new insights into phenotypic and genetic mechanisms of powdery mildew resistance in cucumber. PMID:23689747

  9. Occidental diffusion of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) 500–1300 CE: two routes to Europe

    PubMed Central

    Paris, Harry S.; Daunay, Marie-Christine; Janick, Jules

    2012-01-01

    Background The cucumber, Cucumis sativus, is one of the most widely consumed fruit vegetables the world over. The history of its dispersal to the Occident from its centre of origin, the Indian subcontinent, has been incorrectly understood for some time, due to the confusion of cucumbers with vegetable melons. Iconographic and literary evidence has shown that cucumber was absent in Roman times, up to 500 CE, but present in Europe by late medieval times, 1300. The objective of the present investigation was to determine more accurately when the cucumber arrived in Europe and by what route. Findings and Conclusions The evidence for the movement of C. sativus westward is entirely lexicographical until the 10th century. Syriac, Persian and Byzantine Greek sources suggest the presence of cucumbers, to the east and north-east of the Mediterranean Sea (modern Iran, Iraq and Turkey), by the 6th or 7th century. Arabic medical writings suggest the presence of cucumbers in Spain as early as the mid-9th century and in Tunisia by the early 10th century. Descriptive evidence in Arabic establishes the presence of cucumbers in Andalusia by the second half of the 10th century. Latin translations from Arabic sources indicate the presence of cucumbers in southern Italy by the second half of the 11th century. These writings, together with lexicographical discrepancies in names of cucurbits in late medieval Latin writings, suggest that cucumber was introduced to Europe by two independent diffusions. One diffusion appears to have been overland from Persia into eastern and northern Europe and preceded the Islamic conquests. The other, subsequent diffusion into western and southern Europe, was probably by a mostly maritime route from Persia or the Indian subcontinent into Andalusia. PMID:22104164

  10. Heterologous Expression and Biochemical Characterization of Two Lipoxygenases in Oriental Melon, Cucumis melo var. makuwa Makino

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Songxiao; Chen, Hao; Zhang, Chong; Tang, Yufan; Liu, Jieying; Qi, Hongyan

    2016-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) are a class of non-heme iron-containing dioxygenases that catalyse oxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids to produce hydroperoxidation that are in turn converted to oxylipins. Although multiple isoforms of LOXs have been detected in several plants, LOXs in oriental melon have not attracted much attention. Two full-length LOX cDNA clones, CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 which have been isolated from oriental melon (Cucumis melo var. makuwa Makino) cultivar “Yumeiren”, encode 902 and 906 amino acids, respectively. Bioinformatics analysis showed that CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 included all of the typical LOX domains and shared 58.11% identity at the amino acid level with each other. The phylogenetic analysis revealed that CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 were members of the type 2 13-LOX subgroup which are known to be involved in biotic and abiotic stress. Heterologous expression of the full-length CmLOX10 and truncated CmLOX13 in Escherichia coli revealed that the encoded exogenous proteins were identical to the predicted molecular weights and possessed the lipoxygenase activities. The purified CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 recombinant enzymes exhibited maximum activity at different temperature and pH and both had higher affinity for linoleic acid than linolenic acid. Chromatogram analysis of reaction products from the CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 enzyme reaction revealed that both enzymes produced 13S-hydroperoxides when linoleic acid was used as substrate. Furthermore, the subcellular localization analysis by transient expression of the two LOX fusion proteins in tobacco leaves showed that CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 proteins were located in plasma membrane and chloroplasts respectively. We propose that the two lipoxygenases may play different functions in oriental melon during plant growth and development. PMID:27101009

  11. Water Relations of Seed Development and Germination in Muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) 1

    PubMed Central

    Welbaum, Gregory E.; Bradford, Kent J.

    1990-01-01

    We previously reported that an apparent water potential disequilibrium is maintained late in muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) seed development between the embryo and the surrounding fruit tissue (mesocarp). To further investigate the basis of this phenomenon, the permeability characteristics of the tissues surrounding muskmelon embryos (the mucilaginous endocarp, the testa, a 2- to 4-cell-layered perisperm and a single cell layer of endosperm) were examined from 20 to 65 days after anthesis (DAA). Water passes readily through the perisperm envelope (endosperm + perisperm), testa, and endocarp at all stages of development. Electrolyte leakage (conductivity of imbibition solutions) of individual intact seeds, decoated seeds (testa removed), and embryos (testa and perisperm envelope removed) was measured during imbibition of freshly harvested seeds. The testa accounted for up to 80% of the total electrolyte leakage. Leakage from decoated seeds fell by 8- to 10-fold between 25 and 45 DAA. Presence of the perisperm envelope prior to 40 DAA had little effect on leakage, while in more mature seeds, it reduced leakage by 2- to 3-fold. In mature seeds, freezing, soaking in methanol, autoclaving, accelerated aging, and other treatments which killed the embryos had little effect on leakage of intact or decoated seeds, but caused osmotic swelling of the perisperm envelope due to the leakage of solutes from the embryo into the space between the embryo and perisperm. The semipermeability of the perisperm envelope of mature seeds did not depend upon cellular viability or lipid membrane integrity. After maximum seed dry weight is attained (35-40 DAA), the perisperm envelope prevents the diffusion of solutes, but not of water, between the embryo and the surrounding testa, endocarp, and mesocarp tissue. Images Figure 5 PMID:16667368

  12. Photosynthesis Is Not Involved in the Mechanism of Action of Acifluorfen in Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    PubMed Central

    Duke, Stephen O.; Kenyon, William H.

    1986-01-01

    The possible role of photosynthesis in the mechanism of action of the herbicide acifluorfen (2-chloro-4-(trifluoromethyl)phenoxy-2-nitrobenzoate; AF) was examined. The sensitivity to AF of cotyledons of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) which had been grown under far red light (FR) and white light were compared. FR grown tissues which were photosynthetically imcompetent were hypersensitive to AF under white light and had approximately the same relative response to AF under blue and red light as green, white-light-grown tissues. Ultrastructural damage was apparent in FR-grown, AF-treated tissues within an hour after exposure to white light, with cytoplasmic and plastidic disorganization occurring simultaneously. In cucumber cotyledon tissue which had been greening for various time periods, there was no correlation between photosynthetic capacity and herbicidal efficacy of AF. PSII inhibitors (atrazine and DCMU) and the photophosphorylation inhibitor, tentoxin, had no effect on AF activity. Atrazine did not reduce AF activity at any concentration or light intensity tested, indicating that there is no second, photosynthetic-dependent mechanism of action operating at low AF concentrations or low fluence rates. Carbon dioxide-dependent O2 evolution of intact chloroplasts of spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) had an AF I50 of 125 micromolar compared to 1000 micromolar for cucumber, whereas AF was much more herbicidally active in tissues of cucumber than of spinach. Differences in activity could not be accounted for by differences in uptake of AF. Our results indicate that there is no photosynthetic involvement in the mechanism of action of AF in cucumber. Images Fig. 2 PMID:16664919

  13. Uptake and/or utilization of two simple phenolic acids by Cucumis sativus

    SciTech Connect

    Shann, J.R.

    1986-01-01

    The uptake of ferulic acid (FA) and p-hydroxybenzoic acid (p-HBA) from solutions (0.1 to 1.00 mM, pH 4.0 to 7.0), was determined for intact and excised roots of Cucumis sativus. Uptake methods based on high performance liquid chromatographic (HPLC) analysis of phenolic acid depletion from solution were compared to those radioisotopic methods employing (U-ring-/sup 14/C)FA or p-HBA. Although radiotracer methods more accurately reflected actual uptake of the compounds by cucumber seedlings, HPLC solution depletion methods may be useful in the elucidation of trends over very limited periods of time. The uptake of FA was unaffected by the presence of p-HBA. The uptake of p-HBA was reduced by 30% in the presence of FA when compared to the uptake from solutions containing p-HBA alone. Ferulic acid acts both as an allelopathic agent and precursor in the endogenous process of lignification. To evaluate the involvement of exogenous FA in lignin biosynthesis, roots of hydroponically grown cucumber seedlings were exposed to concentrations of FA labeled with (U-ring-/sup 14/C)FA. Radiotracer was distributed throughout the seedling. A quantitative change in lignification occurred in treated seedlings. In roots and stems, the level of lignin increased with the number of exposures and as the concentrations of exogenous FA increased. Radiotracer was found in the residues of lignin isolated from seedling tissue treated with (U-ring-/sup 14/C)FA. This suggested the utilization of the exogenously applied FA in the endogenous process of lignification.

  14. Effects of ultraviolet-B radiation on fungal disease development in Cucumis sativus

    SciTech Connect

    Orth, A.B.; Teramura, A.H.; Sisler, H.D. )

    1990-09-01

    Stratospheric ozone depletion due to increased atmospheric pollutants has received considerable attention because of the potential increase in ultraviolet-B (UV-B, 280-320 nm) radiation that will reach the earth's surface. Three cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) cultivars were exposed to a daily dose of 11.6 kJ m{sup {minus}2} biologically effective ultraviolet-B (UV-B{sub BE}) radiation in an unshaded greenhouse before and/or after injection by Colletotrichum lagenarium (Pass.) Ell. and Halst. or Cladosporium cucumerinum Ell. and Arth. and analyzed for disease development. Two of these cultivars, Poinsette and Calypso Hybrid, were disease resistant, while the third cultivar, Straight-8, was disease susceptible. Preinfectional treatment of 1 to 7 days with UV-B{sub BE} in Straight-8 led to greater severity of both diseases. Postinfectional UV treatment did not lead to increased disease severity caused by C. lagenarium, while preinfectional UV treatment in both Straight-8 and Poinsette substantially increased disease severity. Although resistant cultivars Poinsette and Calypso Hybrid showed increased anthracnose disease severity when exposed to UV-B, this effect was apparent only on the cotyledons. Both higher spore concentration and exposure to UV-B radiation resulted in greater disease severity. Of the cucumber cultivars tested for UV-B sensitivity, growth in Poinsette was most sensitive and Calypso Hybrid was least sensitive. These preliminary results indicate that the effects of UV-B radiation on disease development in cucumber vary depending on cultivar, timing and duration of UV-B exposure, inoculation level, and plant age.

  15. Heterologous Expression and Biochemical Characterization of Two Lipoxygenases in Oriental Melon, Cucumis melo var. makuwa Makino.

    PubMed

    Cao, Songxiao; Chen, Hao; Zhang, Chong; Tang, Yufan; Liu, Jieying; Qi, Hongyan

    2016-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) are a class of non-heme iron-containing dioxygenases that catalyse oxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids to produce hydroperoxidation that are in turn converted to oxylipins. Although multiple isoforms of LOXs have been detected in several plants, LOXs in oriental melon have not attracted much attention. Two full-length LOX cDNA clones, CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 which have been isolated from oriental melon (Cucumis melo var. makuwa Makino) cultivar "Yumeiren", encode 902 and 906 amino acids, respectively. Bioinformatics analysis showed that CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 included all of the typical LOX domains and shared 58.11% identity at the amino acid level with each other. The phylogenetic analysis revealed that CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 were members of the type 2 13-LOX subgroup which are known to be involved in biotic and abiotic stress. Heterologous expression of the full-length CmLOX10 and truncated CmLOX13 in Escherichia coli revealed that the encoded exogenous proteins were identical to the predicted molecular weights and possessed the lipoxygenase activities. The purified CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 recombinant enzymes exhibited maximum activity at different temperature and pH and both had higher affinity for linoleic acid than linolenic acid. Chromatogram analysis of reaction products from the CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 enzyme reaction revealed that both enzymes produced 13S-hydroperoxides when linoleic acid was used as substrate. Furthermore, the subcellular localization analysis by transient expression of the two LOX fusion proteins in tobacco leaves showed that CmLOX10 and CmLOX13 proteins were located in plasma membrane and chloroplasts respectively. We propose that the two lipoxygenases may play different functions in oriental melon during plant growth and development. PMID:27101009

  16. Endogenous salicylic acid accumulation is required for chilling tolerance in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) seedlings.

    PubMed

    Dong, Chun-Juan; Li, Liang; Shang, Qing-Mao; Liu, Xin-Yan; Zhang, Zhi-Gang

    2014-10-01

    Salicylic acid (SA) is an important plant hormone, and its exogenous application can induce tolerance to multiple environmental stresses in plants. In this study, we examine the potential involvement of endogenous SA in response to chilling in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) seedlings. A low temperature of 8 °C induces a moderate increase in endogenous SA levels. Chilling stimulates the enzymatic activities and the expression of genes for phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL) and benzoic acid-2-hydroxylase rather than isochorismate synthase. This indicates that the PAL enzymatic pathway contributes to chilling-induced SA production. Cucumber seedlings pretreated with SA biosynthesis inhibitors accumulate less endogenous SA and suffer more from chilling damage. The expression of cold-responsive genes is also repressed by SA inhibitors. The reduction in stress tolerance and in gene expression can be restored by the exogenous application of SA, confirming the critical roles of SA in chilling responses in cucumber seedlings. Furthermore, the inhibition of SA biosynthesis under chilling stress results in a prolonged and enhanced hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) accumulation. The application of exogenous SA and the chemical scavenger of H2O2 reduces the excess H2O2 and alleviates chilling injury. In contrast, the protective effects of SA are negated by foliar spraying with high concentrations of H2O2 and an inhibitor of the antioxidant enzyme. These results suggest that endogenous SA is required in response to chilling stress in cucumber seedlings, by modulating the expression of cold-responsive genes and the precise induction of cellular H2O2 levels. PMID:25034826

  17. Exophiala sp. LHL08 reprograms Cucumis sativus to higher growth under abiotic stresses.

    PubMed

    Khan, Abdul L; Hamayun, Muhammad; Ahmad, Nadeem; Waqas, Muhammad; Kang, Sang-Mo; Kim, Yoon-Ha; Lee, In-Jung

    2011-12-01

    Endophytic fungi are potential sources of secondary metabolites; however, they are little known for phytohormones secretion and amelioration of plant growth under abiotic stresses. We isolated a novel endophyte from the roots of Cucumis sativus and identified it as a strain of Exophiala sp. by sequencing internal transcribed spacer/large subunit rDNA and phylogenetic analysis. Prior to identification, culture filtrate (CF) of Exophiala sp. has shown significant growth promotion of Waito-C [a gibberellins (GAs)-deficient mutant cultivar] and Dongjin-byeo (normal GAs biosynthesis cultivar) rice seedlings. CF analysis of Exophiala sp. showed the presence of physiologically active GAs (GA₁, GA₃, GA₄ and GA₇) and inactive GAs (GA₅, GA₈, GA₉, GA₁₂ and GA₂₀). Exophiala sp. had higher GAs in its CF than wild-type strain of Gibberella fujikuroi except GA₃. Influence of Exophiala sp. was assessed on cucumber plant's growth and endogenous abscisic acid (ABA), salicylic acid (SA) and bioactive GAs under salinity and drought stresses. Exophiala sp.-treated plants have shown significantly higher growth and rescued the host plants from stress promulgated water deficit, osmotic and cellular damage. The altered levels of stress-responsive ABA showed low level of stress confined to endophyte-applied plants than control. Elevated levels of SA and bioactive GAs (GA₃ and GA₄) in endophyte-associated plants suggest stress-modulating response toward salinity and drought. In conclusion, symbiotic relations between Exophiala and cucumber have reprogrammed the host plant growth under abiotic stresses, thus indicating a possible threshold role of endophytic fungi in stress alleviation. This study could be extended for improving agricultural productivity under extreme environmental conditions. PMID:21883250

  18. Orthology Analysis and In Vivo Complementation Studies to Elucidate the Role of DIR1 during Systemic Acquired Resistance in Arabidopsis thaliana and Cucumis sativus

    PubMed Central

    Isaacs, Marisa; Carella, Philip; Faubert, Jennifer; Rose, Jocelyn K. C.; Cameron, Robin K.

    2016-01-01

    AtDIR1 (Defective in Induced Resistance1) is an acidic lipid transfer protein essential for systemic acquired resistance (SAR) in Arabidopsis thaliana. Upon SAR induction, DIR1 moves from locally infected to distant uninfected leaves to activate defense priming; however, a molecular function for DIR1 has not been elucidated. Bioinformatic analysis and in silico homology modeling identified putative AtDIR1 orthologs in crop species, revealing conserved protein motifs within and outside of DIR1’s central hydrophobic cavity. In vitro assays to compare the capacity of recombinant AtDIR1 and targeted AtDIR1-variant proteins to bind the lipophilic probe TNS (6,P-toluidinylnaphthalene-2-sulfonate) provided evidence that conserved leucine 43 and aspartic acid 39 contribute to the size of the DIR1 hydrophobic cavity and possibly hydrophobic ligand binding. An Arabidopsis–cucumber SAR model was developed to investigate the conservation of DIR1 function in cucumber (Cucumis sativus), and we demonstrated that phloem exudates from SAR-induced cucumber rescued the SAR defect in the Arabidopsis dir1-1 mutant. Additionally, an AtDIR1 antibody detected a protein of the same size as AtDIR1 in SAR-induced cucumber phloem exudates, providing evidence that DIR1 function during SAR is conserved in Arabidopsis and cucumber. In vitro TNS displacement assays demonstrated that recombinant AtDIR1 did not bind the SAR signals azelaic acid (AzA), glycerol-3-phosphate or pipecolic acid. However, recombinant CsDIR1 and CsDIR2 interacted weakly with AzA and pipecolic acid. Bioinformatic and functional analyses using the Arabidopsis–cucumber SAR model provide evidence that DIR1 orthologs exist in tobacco, tomato, cucumber, and soybean, and that DIR1-mediated SAR signaling is conserved in Arabidopsis and cucumber. PMID:27200039

  19. Orthology Analysis and In Vivo Complementation Studies to Elucidate the Role of DIR1 during Systemic Acquired Resistance in Arabidopsis thaliana and Cucumis sativus.

    PubMed

    Isaacs, Marisa; Carella, Philip; Faubert, Jennifer; Rose, Jocelyn K C; Cameron, Robin K

    2016-01-01

    AtDIR1 (Defective in Induced Resistance1) is an acidic lipid transfer protein essential for systemic acquired resistance (SAR) in Arabidopsis thaliana. Upon SAR induction, DIR1 moves from locally infected to distant uninfected leaves to activate defense priming; however, a molecular function for DIR1 has not been elucidated. Bioinformatic analysis and in silico homology modeling identified putative AtDIR1 orthologs in crop species, revealing conserved protein motifs within and outside of DIR1's central hydrophobic cavity. In vitro assays to compare the capacity of recombinant AtDIR1 and targeted AtDIR1-variant proteins to bind the lipophilic probe TNS (6,P-toluidinylnaphthalene-2-sulfonate) provided evidence that conserved leucine 43 and aspartic acid 39 contribute to the size of the DIR1 hydrophobic cavity and possibly hydrophobic ligand binding. An Arabidopsis-cucumber SAR model was developed to investigate the conservation of DIR1 function in cucumber (Cucumis sativus), and we demonstrated that phloem exudates from SAR-induced cucumber rescued the SAR defect in the Arabidopsis dir1-1 mutant. Additionally, an AtDIR1 antibody detected a protein of the same size as AtDIR1 in SAR-induced cucumber phloem exudates, providing evidence that DIR1 function during SAR is conserved in Arabidopsis and cucumber. In vitro TNS displacement assays demonstrated that recombinant AtDIR1 did not bind the SAR signals azelaic acid (AzA), glycerol-3-phosphate or pipecolic acid. However, recombinant CsDIR1 and CsDIR2 interacted weakly with AzA and pipecolic acid. Bioinformatic and functional analyses using the Arabidopsis-cucumber SAR model provide evidence that DIR1 orthologs exist in tobacco, tomato, cucumber, and soybean, and that DIR1-mediated SAR signaling is conserved in Arabidopsis and cucumber. PMID:27200039

  20. Unexpected morphological and karyological changes in invasive Carpobrotus (Aizoaceae) in Provence (S-E France) compared to native South African species.

    PubMed

    Verlaque, Régine; Affre, Laurence; Diadema, Katia; Suehs, Carey M; Médail, Frédéric

    2011-04-01

    Hybridization processes can lead to evolutionary changes, particularly in co-introduced congeneric plant species, such as Carpobrotus spp. which are recognized as invasive in Mediterranean climate regions. Morphological and karyological comparisons have therefore been made between native Carpobrotus edulis and C. acinaciformis in South Africa and their invasive counterparts in Provence (C. edulis and C. aff. acinaciformis). Morphological data exhibited the most significant differences in invasive C. aff. acinaciformis that forms a new phenotypic variant. Unexpected chromosomal restructuring has been highlighted for both taxa in Provence, with in particular a clear decrease in asymmetry, an increase in the intraspecific variability, and an interspecific convergence of karyotypes. These changes suggest a drift that has facilitated various crosses, and has been amplified through hybridization/introgression. Furthermore, several morphological and karyological transgressive characters have been found in the two invasive taxa. These results stress the important role and the rapidity of karyological changes in invasive processes. PMID:21513901

  1. Complete mitochondrial genome of the giant African snail, Achatina fulica (Mollusca: Achatinidae): a novel location of putative control regions (CR) in the mitogenome within Pulmonate species.

    PubMed

    He, Zhang-Ping; Dai, Xia-Bin; Zhang, Shuai; Zhi, Ting-Ting; Lun, Zhao-Rong; Wu, Zhong-Dao; Yang, Ting-Bao

    2016-01-01

    The whole sequence (15,057 bp) of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) of the terrestrial snail Achatina fulica (order Stylommatophora) was determined. The mitogenome, as the typical metazoan mtDNA, contains 13 protein-coding genes (PCG), 2 ribosomal RNA genes (rRNA) and 22 transfer RNA genes (tRNA). The tRNA genes include two trnS without standard secondary structure. Interestingly, among the known mitogenomes of Pulmonata species, we firstly characterized an unassigned lengthy sequence (551 bp) between the cox1 and the trnV which may be the CR for the sake of its AT bases usage bias (65.70%) and potential hairpin structure. PMID:24975387

  2. The antibacterial activity, antioxidant activity and selectivity index of leaf extracts of thirteen South African tree species used in ethnoveterinary medicine to treat helminth infections

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Diseases caused by bacteria remain a major challenge globally and particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. The plants used in this study have been used in South Africa to treat helminth infections in livestock and humans. In a previous study we found a correlation between antifungal and anthelmintic activity in some cases. In this study we examined other potential uses of these thirteen plant species by determining the antibacterial and antioxidant activity of the leaf acetone extracts. The antibacterial activity was determined by using a serial microdilution method against Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli and Enterococcus faecalis. Bioautography was used to determine the number of antibacterial compounds. The antioxidant activity was determined using the ABTS and DPPH methods. Results Maesa lanceolata and Leucosidea sericea with an MIC of 0.02 mg/ml had excellent antibacterial activity against Enterococcus faecalis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. There was a poor correlation between antioxidant activity and antibacterial activity with R2 = 0.143. This is because antibacterial activity is mainly related to non-polar compounds and antioxidant activity to polar compounds. Maesa lanceolata extracts had a low cytotoxicity with a selectivity index of 5.2, 2.6, 2.6 and 1.3 for P. aeruginosa, E. faecalis, E. coli and S. aureus respectively. Strychnos mitis extracts had a therapeutic index of 1.1 for E. coli. Conclusions This study shows that plant extracts of some species used in ethnoveterinary medicine as anthelmintic may also have excellent antibacterial activity. PMID:24589020

  3. Assessing the utility WorldView-2 imagery for tree species mapping in South African subtropical humid forest and the conservation implications: Dukuduku forest patch as case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Moses Azong; Malahlela, Oupa; Ramoelo, Abel

    2015-06-01

    Indigenous forest biome in South Africa is highly fragmented into patches of various sizes (most patches < 1 km2). The utilization of timber and non-timber resources by poor rural communities living around protected forest patches produce subtle changes in the forest canopy which can be hardly detected on a timely manner using traditional field surveys. The aims of this study were to assess: (i) the utility of very high resolution (VHR) remote sensing imagery (WorldView-2, 0.5-2 m spatial resolution) for mapping tree species and canopy gaps in one of the protected subtropical coastal forests in South Africa (the Dukuduku forest patch (ca.3200 ha) located in the province of KwaZulu-Natal) and (ii) the implications of the map products to forest conservation. Three dominant canopy tree species namely, Albizia adianthifolia, Strychnos spp. and Acacia spp., and canopy gap types including bushes (grass/shrubby), bare soil and burnt patches were accurately mapped (overall accuracy = 89.3 ± 2.1%) using WorldView-2 image and support vector machine classifier. The maps revealed subtle forest disturbances such as bush encroachment and edge effects resulting from forest fragmentation by roads and a power-line. In two stakeholders' workshops organised to assess the implications of the map products to conservation, participants generally agreed amongst others implications that the VHR maps provide valuable information that could be used for implementing and monitoring the effects of rehabilitation measures. The use of VHR imagery is recommended for timely inventorying and monitoring of the small and fragile patches of subtropical forests in Southern Africa.

  4. A consensus linkage map for molecular markers and quantitative trait loci associated with economically important traits in melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    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 ...

  5. A Consensus Linkage Map that Identifies Genomic Regions Controlling Beta-Carotene Quantity and Fruit Maturity in Melon (Cucumis Melo L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The nutritional value and yield potential of U.S. Western Shipping melon (Cucumis melo L.) could be improved through the introgression of genes for early fruit maturity (FM) and the enhancement of the quantity of B-carotene (QBC) in fruit mesocarp (i.e., orange mesocarp). Therefore, a set of 116 F3...

  6. Diversity among melon (Cucumis melo L.) landraces from the Indo-Gangetic plains of India and their genetic relationship with U.S.A. melon cultivars

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We report here the first broad genetic characterization of farmer-developed land races of melon (Cucumis melo L.) from the Indo-Gangetic plains of India, an area overlooked in previous genetic diversity analyses of Indian melon germplasm. Eighty-eight landraces from three melon groups in two subspec...

  7. Antioxidant, Sugar, Mineral and Phytonutrient Concentrations Across Edible Fruit Tissues of Orange-Fleshed HoneyDew Melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Orange-fleshed honey dew melon (Cucumis melo L.) equatorial mesocarp was segmented into hypodermal (sub-peel), outer, middle, and inner (near the seed cavity) tissues and assayed for enzymatic antioxidants, fruit sugars, minerals, phytonutrients, and total protein concentrations. Moving inwards fro...

  8. Genetic Dissection of Fruit Quality Components in Melon (Cucumis melo L.) Using a RIL Population Derived from Exotic x Elite US Western Shipping Germplasm

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growing environment dramatically influences melon (Cucumis melo L.; 2n = 2x =24) fruit development and quality. Consequently, the characterization of quantitative trait loci (QTL) controlling melon fruit quality for application in marker-assisted selection (MAS) requires an assessment of genotype by...

  9. The gene CmACS-7 provides sequence variation for the development of DNA markers associated with monoecious sex expresion in melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Most melon (Cucumis melo L.) breeding lines in South Korea display andromonoecious sex expression (i.e., possessing both bisexual and male flowers on the same plant), which, in turn, necessitates laborious hand emasculation during F1 hybrid seed production. Thus, there is a need to develop monoecio...

  10. A novel allele of monoecious (m) locus is responsible for elongated fruit shape and perfect flowers in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.), sex determination is controlled primarily by the F (female) and M (monoecy) loci. Homozygous recessive mm plants bear bisexual (perfect) flowers and the fruits are often round shaped. CsACS2 encoding the 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid synthase has been shown ...

  11. Black African Traditional Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zaslavsky, Claudia

    1970-01-01

    Discusses the traditional number systems and the origin of the number names used by several African peoples living south of the Sahara. Also included are limitations in African mathematical development, and possible topics for research. (RP)

  12. Taxonomic revision of Plesianthidium Cameron (Apoidea: Megachilidae: Megachilinae: Anthidiini), an endemic southern African bee genus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The southern African bee genus Plesianthidium Cameron is revised. It comprises twelve species. Two new species are described, namely Plesianthidium (Spinanthidium) richtersveldensis and Plesianthidium (Spinanthidium) namaquaensis. Two species names are removed from synonymy with volkmanni; namely ca...

  13. How to improve fertility of African soils? Leguminous fallows (Cameroon), addition of farmyard manure and mineral fertilizer (Kenya), organic residues management and introduction of N2 fixing species in forest plantations (Congo).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koutika, Lydie-Stella; Mareschal, Louis; Mouanda, Cadeau; Epron, Daniel

    2014-05-01

    Most of African soils are inherently infertile and poor in nutrients mainly nitrogen and phosphorus. Several practices are used to improve soil fertility, increase productivity and ensure their sustainability. Soil fertility in the leguminous fallows was evaluated through particulate organic matter (POM), the more active part of soil organic matter (SOM) in Cameroon. The combination of mineral and organic (manure) fertilizers increased microbial P biomass allowing the release of P along the plant growing period in the Kenyan soils. Organic residues management and introduction of nitrogen fixing species (Acacia) were used to improve soil fertility and sustain forest productivity on the coastal plains of Congo. SOM fractionation was made under Pueraria, Mucuna fallows and natural regrowth mainly Chromolaena and under 3 forest plantation treatments installed in previous savanna: 1) no input, 2) normal input, and 3) double input of organic residues. Microbial P biomass and sequential P fractionation were evaluated in high and low P fixing soils. N, C, available P and pH were determined on soil sampled in acacia (100A), eucalypt (100E) and mixed-species (50A:50E) stands. N and P were determined in aboveground litters and in leaves, bark and wood of trees. The two leguminous fallows increased N content in POM fractions i.e., N >1% for Pueraria and Mucuna against N<1% for natural regrowth in the 0-0.10m depth, probably through N input from N2 fixation from the atmosphere (Cameroon).The addition of mineral fertilizers and farmyard manure increases P biomass (4.8 after 2 weeks to 15.2 after 16 weeks), and then decreased to 9.7 mg P g-1 soil (week 32). It also changes the P Hedley fractions partition in the high P fixing Kenyan soil (0-0.10m). After two rotations (14 years), SOM mineralization was the highest in the double input of organic residues treatment (low coarse POM 5.6 g kg-1 of soil and high organo-mineral fraction (OMF) 115 g kg-1 of soil). The introduction of A

  14. Variation of chemical composition of essential oils in wild populations of Thymus algeriensis Boiss. et Reut., a North African endemic Species

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Thymus algeriensis is an endemic aromatic plant to Tunisia largely used in folk medicine and as a culinary herb. The bulks aromatic plants come from wild populations whose essential oils compositions as well as their biological properties are severely affected by the geographical location and the phase of the plant development. Therefore, the aim of the present work is to provide more information on the variation of essential oil composition of T. algeriensis collected during the vegetative and the flowering phases and from eight different geographical regions. Besides, influence of population location and phenological stage on yield and metal chelating activity of essential oils is also assessed. Methods The essential oil composition of Thymus algeriensis was determined mainly by GC/FID and GC/MS. The chemical differentiation among populations performed on all compounds was assessed by linear discriminate analysis and cluster analysis based on Euclidean distance. Results A total of 71 compounds, representing 88.99 to 99.76% of the total oil, were identified. A significant effect of the population location on the chemical composition variability of T. algeriensis oil was observed. Only 18 out of 71 compounds showed a statistically significant variation among population locations and phenological stages. Chemical differentiation among populations was high. Minor compounds play an important role to distinguish between chemical groups. Five chemotypes according to the major compounds have been distinguished. Chemotypes distribution is linked to the population location and not to bioclimate, indicating that local selective environmental factors acted on the chemotype diversity. Conclusions The major compounds at the species level were α-pinene (7.41-13.94%), 1,8-cineole (7.55-22.07%), cis-sabinene hydrate (0.10-12.95%), camphor (6.8-19.93%), 4-terpineol (1.55-11.86%), terpenyl acetate (0-14.92%) and viridiflorol (0-11.49%). Based on major compounds, the

  15. Evaluation of pharmacological activities, cytotoxicity and phenolic composition of four Maytenus species used in southern African traditional medicine to treat intestinal infections and diarrhoeal diseases

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Microbial infections and resulting inflammation and oxidative stress are common pathogenesis of gastrointestinal tract (GIT) disorders. In South Africa, several species of the genus Maytenus are used in traditional medicine to treat various infectious diseases. Most of the previous work on this genus was focused on nonpolar extracts from the root and bark. In this study, leaf extracts of polar extracts of Maytenus peduncularis, Maytenus procumbens, Maytenus senegalensis and Maytenus undata were evaluated for antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities to determine their efficacy as therapeutic agents in GIT disorders. Methods Phenolic-enriched leaf extracts and fractions were prepared by extracting with acidified 70% methanol and solvent-solvent fractionation. The activities of the fractions against Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli and Enterococcus faecalis as well as clinical isolates of Aspergillus fumigatus, Candida albicans and Cryptococcus neoformans were determined using a serial microplate dilution method. Antioxidant activities were determined using 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH), 2,2'-azinobis(3-ethylbenzthiazoline-6-sulphonic acid) (ABTS), hydroxyl (OH) radical scavenging and linoleic acid peroxidation inhibitory assays. The phenolic composition as well as the cytotoxicity against Vero cell lines of the crude extracts was evaluated using various standard protocols. Results The antimicrobial activities were concentrated in the non-polar fractions of hexane, dichloromethane and ethyl acetate (MICs 19–312 μg/ml). The crude extracts and polar fractions (butanol and water) had moderate to poor antimicrobial activity (MICs 312 to above 2500 μg/ml). The crude extracts and polar fractions had good antioxidant activity (EC50 values varied from 1.22 to 607 μg/ml, 1.71 to 312 μg/ml and 23 to 284 μg/ml for DPPH, ABTS and OH respectively. Linoleic acid peroxidation inhibition EC50 values of

  16. The African Connection

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oguntoyinbo, Lekan

    2012-01-01

    From student and faculty exchanges to joint research projects, U.S. universities maintain a broad spectrum of collaborative relationships with African universities. It's unclear how many U.S. colleges and universities have partnerships with African universities. The African Studies Association, an organization of scholars, doesn't keep that kind…

  17. Water Relations of Seed Development and Germination in Muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) 1

    PubMed Central

    Welbaum, Gregory E.; Bradford, Kent J.

    1990-01-01

    The initiation of radicle growth during seed germination may be driven by solute accumulation and increased turgor pressure, by cell wall relaxation, or by weakening of tissues surrounding the embryo. To investigate these possibilities, imbibition kinetics, water contents, and water (Ψ) and solute (ψs) potentials of intact muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) seeds, decoated seeds (testa removed, but a thin perisperm/endosperm envelope remains around the embryo), and isolated cotyledons and embryonic axes were measured. Cotyledons and embryonic axes excised and imbibed as isolated tissues attained water contents 25 and 50% greater, respectively, than the same tissues hydrated within intact seeds. The effect of the testa and perisperm on embryo water content was due to mechanical restriction of embryo swelling and not to impermeability to water. The Ψ and ψs of embryo tissues were measured by psychrometry after excision from imbibed intact seeds. For intact or decoated seeds and excised cotyledons, Ψ values were >−0.2 MPa just prior to radicle emergence. The Ψ of excised embryonic axes, however, averaged only −0.6 MPa over the same period. The embryonic axis apparently is mechanically constrained within the testa/perisperm, increasing its total pressure potential until axis Ψ is in equilibrium with cotyledon Ψ, but reducing its water content and resulting in a low Ψ when the constraint is removed. There was no evidence of decreasing ψs or increasing turgor pressure (Ψ-ψs) prior to radicle growth for either intact seeds or excised tissues. Given the low relative water content of the axes within intact seeds, cell wall relaxation would be ineffective in creating a Ψ gradient for water uptake. Rather, axis growth may be initiated by weakening of the perisperm, thus releasing the external pressure and creating a Ψ gradient for water uptake into the axis. The perisperm envelope contains a cap of small, thin-walled endosperm cells adjacent to the radicle tip. We

  18. Endometrial polyps in 2 African pygmy hedgehogs

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    Abstract Reports of spontaneously occurring endometrial polyps in animals are rare and have only involved a few species. This report is intended to advise veterinarians that older African pygmy hedgehogs may develop endometrial polyps and that these lesions can be a cause of bloody vaginal discharge, sometimes interpreted as hematuria. PMID:16048013

  19. African and non-African admixture components in African Americans and an African Caribbean population.

    PubMed

    Murray, Tanda; Beaty, Terri H; Mathias, Rasika A; Rafaels, Nicholas; Grant, Audrey Virginia; Faruque, Mezbah U; Watson, Harold R; Ruczinski, Ingo; Dunston, Georgia M; Barnes, Kathleen C

    2010-09-01

    Admixture is a potential source of confounding in genetic association studies, so it becomes important to detect and estimate admixture in a sample of unrelated individuals. Populations of African descent in the US and the Caribbean share similar historical backgrounds but the distributions of African admixture may differ. We selected 416 ancestry informative markers (AIMs) to estimate and compare admixture proportions using STRUCTURE in 906 unrelated African Americans (AAs) and 294 Barbadians (ACs) from a study of asthma. This analysis showed AAs on average were 72.5% African, 19.6% European and 8% Asian, while ACs were 77.4% African, 15.9% European, and 6.7% Asian which were significantly different. A principal components analysis based on these AIMs yielded one primary eigenvector that explained 54.04% of the variation and captured a gradient from West African to European admixture. This principal component was highly correlated with African vs. European ancestry as estimated by STRUCTURE (r(2)=0.992, r(2)=0.912, respectively). To investigate other African contributions to African American and Barbadian admixture, we performed PCA on approximately 14,000 (14k) genome-wide SNPs in AAs, ACs, Yorubans, Luhya and Maasai African groups, and estimated genetic distances (F(ST)). We found AAs and ACs were closest genetically (F(ST)=0.008), and both were closer to the Yorubans than the other East African populations. In our sample of individuals of African descent, approximately 400 well-defined AIMs were just as good for detecting substructure as approximately 14,000 random SNPs drawn from a genome-wide panel of markers. PMID:20717976

  20. Phylogeny of African cichlid fishes as revealed by molecular markers.

    PubMed

    Mayer, W E; Tichy, H; Klein, J

    1998-06-01

    The species flocks of cichlid fish in the three great East African Lakes, Victoria, Malawi, and Tanganyika, have arisen in each lake by explosive adaptive radiation. Various questions concerning their phylogeny have not yet been answered. In particular, the identity of the ancestral founder species and the monophyletic origin of the haplochromine cichlids from the East African lakes have not been established conclusively. In the present study, we used the anonymous nuclear DNA marker DXTU1 as a step towards answering these questions. A 280 bp-fragment of the DXTU1 locus was amplified by the polymerase chain reaction from East African lacustrine species, the East African riverine cichlid species Haplochromis bloyeti, H. burtoni and H. sparsidens, and other African cichlids. Sequencing revealed several indels and substitutions that were used as cladistically informative markers to support a phylogenetic tree constructed by the neighbor-joining method. The topology, although not supported by high bootstrap values, corresponds well to the geographical distribution and previous classification of the cichlids. Markers could be defined that: (i) differentiate East African from West African cichlids; (ii) distinguish the riverine and Lake Victoria/Malawi haplochromines from Lake Tanganyika cichlids; and (iii) indicate the existence of a monophyletic Lake Victoria cichlid superflock which includes haplochromines from satellite lakes and East African rivers. In order to resolve further the relationship of East African riverine and lacustrine species, mtDNA cytochrome b and control region segments were sequenced. The mtDNA-based trees support the notion of the monophyly of the Lake Victoria superflock but are ambiguous with respect to the phylogenetic position of the Lake Malawi flock. PMID:9675872

  1. The African superswell

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nyblade, Andrew A.; Robinson, Scott W.

    1994-01-01

    Maps of residual bathymetry in the ocean basins around the African continent reveal a broad bathymetric swell in the southeastern Atlantic Ocean with an amplitude of about 500 m. We propose that this region of anomalously shallow bathymetry, together with the contiguous eastern and southern African plateaus, form a superswell which we refer to as the African superswell. The origin of the African superswell is uncertain. However, rifting and volcanism in eastern Africa, as well as heat flow measurements in southern Africa and the southeastern Atlantic Ocean, suggest that the superswell may be attributed, at least in part, to heating of the lithosphere.

  2. 16 Extraordinary African Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lobb, Nancy

    This collection for children tells the stories of 16 African Americans who helped make America what it is today. African Americans can take pride in the heritage of these contributors to society. Biographies are given for the following: (1) Sojourner Truth, preacher and abolitionist; (2) Frederick Douglass, abolitionist; (3) Harriet Tubman, leader…

  3. African Studies Computer Resources.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuntz, Patricia S.

    African studies computer resources that are readily available in the United States with linkages to Africa are described, highlighting those most directly corresponding to African content. Africanists can use the following four fundamental computer systems: (1) Internet/Bitnet; (2) Fidonet; (3) Usenet; and (4) dial-up bulletin board services. The…

  4. African Literature as Celebration.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Achebe, Chinua

    1989-01-01

    Describes the Igbo tradition of "Mbari," a communal creative enterprise that celebrates the world and the life lived in it through art. Contrasts the cooperative, social dimension of pre-colonial African culture with the exclusion and denial of European colonialism, and sees new African literature again celebrating human presence and dignity. (AF)

  5. Educating African American Males

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bell, Edward E.

    2010-01-01

    Background: Schools across America spend money, invest in programs, and sponsor workshops, offer teacher incentives, raise accountability standards, and even evoke the name of Obama in efforts to raise the academic achievement of African American males. Incarceration and college retention rates point to a dismal plight for many African American…

  6. Africans Away from Home.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clarke, John Henrik

    Africans who were brought across the Atlantic as slaves never fully adjusted to slavery or accepted its inevitability. Resistance began on board the slave ships, where many jumped overboard or committed suicide. African slaves in South America led the first revolts against tyranny in the New World. The first slave revolt in the Caribbean occurred…

  7. Keeping African Masks Real

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Waddington, Susan

    2012-01-01

    Art is a good place to learn about our multicultural planet, and African masks are prized throughout the world as powerfully expressive artistic images. Unfortunately, multicultural education, especially for young children, can perpetuate stereotypes. Masks taken out of context lose their meaning and the term "African masks" suggests that there is…

  8. Diabetes in African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, M

    2005-01-01

    African Americans have a high risk for type 2 diabetes. Genetic traits, the prevalence of obesity, and insulin resistance all contribute to the risk of diabetes in the African American community. African Americans have a high rate of diabetic complications, because of poor glycaemic control and racial disparities in health care in the USA. African Americans with diabetes may have an atypical presentation that simulates type 1 diabetes, but then their subsequent clinical course is typical of type 2 diabetes. Culturally sensitive strategies, structured disease management protocols, and the assistance of nurses, diabetic educators, and other health care professionals are effective in improving the outcome of diabetes in the African American community. PMID:16344294

  9. Reactions of some cucurbitaceous species Tozucchini yellow mosaic virus (ZYMV).

    PubMed

    Csorba, R; Kiss, E F; Molnár, L

    2004-01-01

    Zucchini yellow mosaic virus (ZYMV) is a widespread serious pathogen of cucurbitaceous plants. ZYMV was first detected in Hungary in 1995. Since then it has become one of the most dangerous viruses of the Cucurbitaceae family causing serious epidemics. The virus has many hosts, which - particularly perennial ones - may play important role as virus reservoirs and infection sources in virus epidemiology. On the other hand wild weed species maybe sources of resistance to viruses. Our research was carried out on a total of 15 wild species from 8 genera (Cucumis, Cucurbita, Cyclanthera, Ecballium Momordica, Lagenaria, Zehneria, Bryonia). Test plants were mechanically inoculated with ZYMV. Local and systemic symptoms were determined and 5 weeks after inoculation DAS-ELISA tests were also carried out. Symptomless plants were reinoculated to Cucumis sativus cv. Accordia test plants. On the basis of the results we determined the percentages of infections and so we classified the test-plants into sensitive and resistance categories. On the basis of the results new host plants of ZYMV are the followings: Bryonia dioica, Cyclanthera pedata, Ecballium elaterium, Momordica balsamina, Momordica rostrata, and Zehneria scabra. Among them Momordica balsamina and Ecballium elaterium showed latent to ZYMV. Bryonia alba and Zehneria indica are especially remarkable, because they proved resistant to ZYMV on the basis of symptomatology and serology. Our results might have significant role in the field of research of host range, virus resistance and virus differentiation. PMID:15756830

  10. Ecological observations on an East African bat community

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Shea, Thomas J.; Vaughan, Terry A.

    1980-01-01

    The structure and ecology of bat faunas is a subject of interest to mammalogists (Findley, 1976; Wilson, 1973). Syntopic African bat communities, however, have received little study in comparison with neotropical faunas (cf. Fleming et al., 1972; LaVal and Fitch, 1977; McNab, 1971). Verschuren (1957) presented natural history information and species accounts for a localized central African bat fauna. Foraging related characteristics of a Rhodesian community have also been analyzed (Fenton, 1975; Fenton et al., 1977), but not on a seasonal basis. Other reports on African bat faunas are restricted to regional summaries (cf. Koopman, 1975 or Rosevear, 1965) and do not consider ecological aspects of a single localized community. The purpose of our study was to follow species composition, reproduction, and foraging related characteristics of an East African bat fauna over a full annual cycle.

  11. Black versus Black: The Relationship among African, African American, and African Caribbean Persons.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jackson, Jennifer V.; Cothran, Mary E.

    2003-01-01

    Surveyed people of African descent regarding relationships among African, African-American, and African-Caribbean persons, focusing on contact and friendship, travel to countries of the diaspora, cross-cultural communication, thoughts and stereotypes, and education. Most respondents had contacts with the other groups, but groups had preconceived…

  12. Inhibitory effect of Cucumis sativus on melanin production in melanoma B16 cells by downregulation of tyrosinase expression.

    PubMed

    Kai, Hisahiro; Baba, Masaki; Okuyama, Toru

    2008-12-01

    We compared the inhibitory effects on melanogenesis of six plant parts (leaves, stems, roots, whole fruits, calyxes, and fruits without calyxes) of Cucumis sativus. MeOH extracts of leaves and stems inhibited melanin production in B16 cells. These extracts did not affect the activity of mushroom tyrosinase or crude enzyme lysate from B16 cells. However, the extracts decreased tyrosinase expression at the protein level. These results suggest that the depigmenting mechanism of extracts from leaves and stems of C. SATIVUS involves the expression of tyrosinase. Of eight compounds isolated from the leaves, lutein ( 1) (IC (50) = 170.7 microM) and (+)-(1 R,2 S,5 R,6 S)-2,6-di-(4'-hydroxyphenyl)-3,7-dioxabicyclo[3.3.0]octane ( 2) (IC (50) = 270.8 microM) were found to suppress melanogenesis. Whereas 1 was found to markedly decrease the expression levels of tyrosinase, 2 only weakly reduced tyrosinase expression. This suggests that 1 is an active component in the leaves of C. sativus and is a potentially useful skin-whitening agent. PMID:19009501

  13. Involvement of Singlet Oxygen in 5-Aminolevulinic Acid-Induced Photodynamic Damage of Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Chloroplasts 1

    PubMed Central

    Chakraborty, Niranjan; Tripathy, Baishnab Charan

    1992-01-01

    Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L., cv Poinsette) plants were sprayed with 20 millimolar 5-aminolevulinic acid and then incubated in the dark for 14 hours. The intact chloroplasts were isolated from the above plants in the dark and were exposed to weak light (250 micromoles per square meter per second). Within 30 minutes, photosystem II activity was reduced by 50%. The singlet oxygen (1O2) scavengers, histidine and sodium azide (NaN3) significantly protected against the damage caused to photosystem II. The hydroxyl radical scavenger formate failed to protect the thylakoid membranes. The production of 1O2 monitored as N,N-dimethyl p-nitrosoaniline bleaching increased as a function of light exposure time of treated chloroplasts and was abolished by the 1O2 quencher, NaN3. Membrane lipid peroxidation monitored as malondialdehyde production was also significantly reduced when chloroplasts were illuminated in the presence of NaN3 and histidine. Protochlorophyllide was the most abundant pigment accumulated in intact chloroplasts isolated from 5-aminolevulinic acid-treated plants and was probably acting as type II photosensitizer. PMID:16668650

  14. Three-Dimensional Reconstruction, by TEM Tomography, of the Ultrastructural Modifications Occurring in Cucumis sativus L. Mitochondria under Fe Deficiency

    PubMed Central

    Vigani, Gianpiero; Faoro, Franco; Ferretti, Anna Maria; Cantele, Francesca; Maffi, Dario; Marelli, Marcello; Maver, Mauro; Murgia, Irene; Zocchi, Graziano

    2015-01-01

    Background Mitochondria, as recently suggested, might be involved in iron sensing and signalling pathways in plant cells. For a better understanding of the role of these organelles in mediating the Fe deficiency responses in plant cells, it is crucial to provide a full overview of their modifications occurring under Fe-limited conditions. The aim of this work is to characterize the ultrastructural as well as the biochemical changes occurring in leaf mitochondria of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) plants grown under Fe deficiency. Methodology/Results Mitochondrial ultrastructure was investigated by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and electron tomography techniques, which allowed a three-dimensional (3D) reconstruction of cellular structures. These analyses reveal that mitochondria isolated from cucumber leaves appear in the cristae junction model conformation and that Fe deficiency strongly alters both the number and the volume of cristae. The ultrastructural changes observed in mitochondria isolated from Fe-deficient leaves reflect a metabolic status characterized by a respiratory chain operating at a lower rate (orthodox-like conformation) with respect to mitochondria from control leaves. Conclusions To our knowledge, this is the first report showing a 3D reconstruction of plant mitochondria. Furthermore, these results suggest that a detailed characterization of the link between changes in the ultrastructure and functionality of mitochondria during different nutritional conditions, can provide a successful approach to understand the role of these organelles in the plant response to Fe deficiency. PMID:26107946

  15. Ethylene is Involved in Brassinosteroids Induced Alternative Respiratory Pathway in Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Seedlings Response to Abiotic Stress

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Li-Jie; Deng, Xing-Guang; Zhu, Tong; Zheng, Ting; Li, Peng-Xu; Wu, Jun-Qiang; Zhang, Da-Wei; Lin, Hong-Hui

    2015-01-01

    Effects of brassinosteroids (BRs) on cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) abiotic stresses resistance to salt, polyethylene glycol (PEG), cold and the potential mechanisms were investigated in this work. Previous reports have indicated that BRs can induce ethylene production and enhance alternative oxidase (AOX) pathway. The mechanisms whether ethylene is involved as a signal molecule which connected BR with AOX in regulating stress tolerance are still unknown. Here, we found that pretreatment with 1 μM brassinolide (BL, the most active BRs) relieved stress-caused oxidative damage in cucumber seedlings and clearly enhanced the capacity of AOX and the ethylene biosynthesis. Furthermore, transcription level of ethylene signaling biosynthesis genes including ripening-related ACC synthase1 (CSACS1), ripening-related ACC synthase2 (CSACS2), ripening-related ACC synthase3 (CSACS3), 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate oxidase1 (CSACO1), 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate oxidase2 (CSACO2), and CSAOX were increased after BL treatment. Importantly, the application of the salicylhydroxamic acid (SHAM, AOX inhibitor) and ethylene biosynthesis inhibitor aminooxyacetic acid (AOA) decreased plant resistance to environmental stress by blocking BRs-induced alternative respiration. Taken together, our results demonstrated that ethylene was involved in BRs-induced AOX activity which played important roles in abiotic stresses tolerance in cucumber seedlings. PMID:26617622

  16. Leaf Carbohydrate Status and Enzymes of Translocate Synthesis in Fruiting and Vegetative Plants of Cucumis sativus L. 1

    PubMed Central

    Pharr, David M.; Huber, Steven C.; Sox, Harriet N.

    1985-01-01

    Carbon partitioning in the leaves of Cucumis sativus L., a stachyose translocating plant, was influenced by the presence or absence of a single growing fruit on the plant. Fruit growth was very rapid with rates of fresh weight gain as high as 3.3 grams per hour. Fruit growth was highly competitive with vegetative growth as indicated by lower fresh weights of leaf blades, petioles, stem internodes and root systems on plants bearing a single growing fruit compared to plants not bearing a fruit. Carbon exchange rates, starch accumulation rates and carbon export rates were higher in leaves of plants bearing a fruit. Dry weight loss from leaves was higher at night from fruiting plants, and morning starch levels were consistently lower in leaves of fruiting than in leaves of vegetative plants indicating rapid starch mobilization at night from the leaves of fruiting plants. Galactinol, the galactosyl donor for stachyose biosynthesis, was present in the leaves of fruit-bearing plants at consistently lower concentration than in leaves of vegetative plants. Galactinol synthase, and sucrose phosphate synthase activities were not different on a per gram fresh weight basis in leaves from the two plant types; however, stachyose synthase activity was twice as high in leaves from fruiting plants. Thus, the lower galactinol pools may be associated with an activation of the terminal step in stachyose biosynthesis in leaves in response to the high sink demand of a growing cucumber fruit. PMID:16663989

  17. Cell Wall Free Space of Cucumis Hypocotyls Contains NAD and a Blue Light-Regulated Peroxidase Activity.

    PubMed

    Shinkle, J R; Swoap, S J; Simon, P; Jones, R L

    1992-04-01

    Solutions were obtained from the cell wall free space of red light-grown cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) hypocotyl sections by a low-speed centrifugation technique. The centrifugate contained NAD and peroxidase but no detectable cytoplasmic contamination, as indicated by the absence of the activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase from the cell wall solution. Peroxidase activity centrifuged from the cell wall of red light-grown cucumber hypocotyl section could be resolved into at least three cathodic isoforms and two anodic isoforms by isoelectric focusing. Treatment of red light-grown cucumber seedlings with a 10-minute pulse of high-intensity blue light increased the level of cell wall peroxidase by about 60% and caused a qualitative change in the anodic isoforms of this enzyme. The increase in peroxidase activity was detectable within 25 minutes after the start of the blue light pulse, was maximal at 35 minutes, and declined to control levels by 45 minutes of irradiation. The inhibitory effect of blue light on hypocotyl elongation was more rapid than the effect of blue light on total wall peroxidase activity, leading to the conclusion that growth and peroxidase activity are not causally related. PMID:16668797

  18. Synergistic effect of flyash and SO{sub 2} on development of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) leaf injury

    SciTech Connect

    Tung, G.; McIlveen, W.D.; Jones, R.D.

    1995-10-01

    In a two-factorial experiment, sulfur dioxide alone at concentration of 131 {micro}g/m{sup 3} over long exposures or flyash for either coal or oil combustion alone applied onto cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) foliage causes no visible injury. However, if both flyash and sulfur dioxide were presented simultaneously, a specific mosaic-chlorosis symptom developed on leaves. A synergistic effect was thus demonstrated. Histopathology of the mosaic-chlorosis symptom was studied. An unusual pattern of tissue abnormally initiated from the collapse of the anticlinal cell walls of the upper epidermal cells and progressed along cell walls into mesophyll tissues. Cellular injury at the lower spongy tissues typical of that caused by SO{sub 2} was also observed. A significant elevation of sulfate-sulfur in the leaves treated with a combination of SO{sub 2} and flyash was demonstrated. Significant interactions between the two factors were found for both injury and sulfur chemistry. This suggests that flyash deposits on the leaf surface play a catalytic role in oxidizing atmospheric sulfur dioxide continuously to form sulfuric acid (H{sub 2}SO{sub 4}) in situ. This acid could infiltrate into mesophyll damage cells and tissues en route.

  19. Cell Wall Free Space of Cucumis Hypocotyls Contains NAD and a Blue Light-Regulated Peroxidase Activity 1

    PubMed Central

    Shinkle, James R.; Swoap, Steven J.; Simon, Patrice; Jones, Russell L.

    1992-01-01

    Solutions were obtained from the cell wall free space of red light-grown cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) hypocotyl sections by a low-speed centrifugation technique. The centrifugate contained NAD and peroxidase but no detectable cytoplasmic contamination, as indicated by the absence of the activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase from the cell wall solution. Peroxidase activity centrifuged from the cell wall of red light-grown cucumber hypocotyl section could be resolved into at least three cathodic isoforms and two anodic isoforms by isoelectric focusing. Treatment of red light-grown cucumber seedlings with a 10-minute pulse of high-intensity blue light increased the level of cell wall peroxidase by about 60% and caused a qualitative change in the anodic isoforms of this enzyme. The increase in peroxidase activity was detectable within 25 minutes after the start of the blue light pulse, was maximal at 35 minutes, and declined to control levels by 45 minutes of irradiation. The inhibitory effect of blue light on hypocotyl elongation was more rapid than the effect of blue light on total wall peroxidase activity, leading to the conclusion that growth and peroxidase activity are not causally related. ImagesFigure 2 PMID:16668797

  20. Insights into salicylic acid responses in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) cotyledons based on a comparative proteomic analysis.

    PubMed

    Hao, J H; Dong, C J; Zhang, Z G; Wang, X L; Shang, Q M

    2012-05-01

    To investigate the response of cucumber seedlings to exogenous salicylic acid (SA) and gain a better understanding of SA action mechanism, we generated a proteomic profile of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) cotyledons treated with exogenous SA. Analysis of 1500 protein spots from each gel revealed 63 differentially expressed proteins, 59 of which were identified successfully. Of the identified proteins, 97% matched cucumber proteins using a whole cucumber protein database based on the newly completed genome established by our laboratory. The identified proteins were involved in various cellular responses and metabolic processes, including antioxidative reactions, cell defense, photosynthesis, carbohydrate metabolism, respiration and energy homeostasis, protein folding and biosynthesis. The two largest functional categories included proteins involved in antioxidative reactions (23.7%) and photosynthesis (18.6%). Furthermore, the SA-responsive protein interaction network revealed 13 key proteins, suggesting that the expression changes of these proteins could be critical for SA-induced resistance. An analysis of these changes suggested that SA-induced resistance and seedling growth might be regulated in part through pathways involving antioxidative reactions and photosynthesis. PMID:22404834

  1. Silencing of the gibberellin receptor homolog, CsGID1a, affects locule formation in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) fruit.

    PubMed

    Liu, Bin; Liu, Xingwang; Yang, Sen; Chen, Chunhua; Xue, Shudan; Cai, Yanling; Wang, Dandan; Yin, Shuai; Gai, Xinshuang; Ren, Huazhong

    2016-04-01

    Gibberellins are phytohormones with many roles, including the regulation of fruit development. However, little is known about the relationship between GA perception and fleshy fruit ontogeny, and particularly locule formation. We characterized the expression of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) GA receptor gene (CsGID1a) using quantitative real-time PCR, in situ hybridization and a promoter::β-glucuronidase (GUS) assay. CsGID1a-RNAi cucumber fruits were observed by dissecting microscope, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. Finally, genome-wide gene expression in young fruits from a control and the RNAi line was compared using a digital gene expression (DGE) analysis approach. The expression pattern of CsGID1a was found to be closely correlated with fruit locule formation, and silencing CsGID1a in cucumber resulted in fruits with abnormal carpels and locules. Overexpression of CsGID1a in the Arabidopsis thaliana double mutant (gid1a gid1c) resulted in 'cucumber locule-like' fruits. The DGE analysis suggested that expression of genes related to auxin synthesis and transport, as well as the cell cycle, was altered in CsGID1a-RNAi fruits, a result that was supported by comparing the auxin content and cellular structures of the control and transgenic fruits. This study demonstrates a previously uncharacterized GA signaling pathway that is essential for cucumber fruit locule formation. PMID:26701170

  2. Glutathione-dependent induction of local and systemic defense against oxidative stress by exogenous melatonin in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.).

    PubMed

    Li, Hao; He, Jie; Yang, Xiaozhen; Li, Xin; Luo, Dan; Wei, Chunhua; Ma, Jianxiang; Zhang, Yong; Yang, Jianqiang; Zhang, Xian

    2016-03-01

    Melatonin is involved in defending against oxidative stress caused by various environmental stresses in plants. In this study, the roles of exogenous melatonin in regulating local and systemic defense against photooxidative stress in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) and the involvement of redox signaling were examined. Foliar or rhizospheric treatment with melatonin enhanced tolerance to photooxidative stress in both melatonin-treated leaves and untreated systemic leaves. Increased melatonin levels are capable of increasing glutathione (reduced glutathione [GSH]) redox status. Application of H2 O2 and GSH also induced tolerance to photooxidative stress, while inhibition of H2 O2 accumulation and GSH synthesis compromised melatonin-induced local and systemic tolerance to photooxidative stress. H2 O2 treatment increased the GSH/oxidized glutathione (GSSG) ratio, while inhibition of H2 O2 accumulation prevented a melatonin-induced increase in the GSH/GSSG ratio. Additionally, inhibition of GSH synthesis blocked H2 O2 -induced photooxidative stress tolerance, whereas scavenging or inhibition of H2 O2 production attenuated but did not abolish GSH-induced tolerance to photooxidative stress. These results strongly suggest that exogenous melatonin is capable of inducing both local and systemic defense against photooxidative stress and melatonin-enhanced GSH/GSSG ratio in a H2 O2 -dependent manner is critical in the induction of tolerance. PMID:26681257

  3. Atmospheric Humidity Influences Oviposition Rate of Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) Through Morphological Responses of Host Cucumis sativus Leaves.

    PubMed

    Shibuya, T; Itagaki, K; Ueyama, S; Hirai, N; Endo, R

    2016-02-01

    We investigated the effects of morphology of host cucumber, Cucumis sativus L., leaves acclimatized to different atmospheric humidity levels on oviposition by adult females of the twospotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch. Cucumber seedlings were grown at a vapor pressure deficit (VPD) of 0.4, 1.9, or 3.0 kPa at 28°C (90%, 50%, or 20% relative humidity, respectively) in growth chambers until the second true leaves had expanded. Adult females of T. urticae were released on the adaxial surfaces of leaf squares cut from first and second true leaves in each treatment group, and held in the same humidity condition. Eggs were counted 2 d after release. The lower acclimatization humidity (higher VPD) increased trichome (leaf hair) density of the host leaves and oviposition rate, but the relationship between the trichome and oviposition differed between leaf positions. The leaf mass per area (LMA) was greater in first true leaves than in second true leaves, but was not influenced by VPD. A linear regression model with oviposition rate as the dependent variable and trichome density and LMA as independent variables showed that both variables influenced the oviposition rate approximately equally. We conclude that oviposition was accelerated under low humidity (high VPD) conditions indirectly probably through an increase in the trichome density of host leaves. PMID:26511981

  4. [Effects of exogenous salicylic acid on membrane lipid peroxidation and photosynthetic characteristics of Cucumis sativus seedlings under drought stress].

    PubMed

    Hao, Jing-Hong; Yi, Yang; Shang, Qing-Mao; Dong, Chun-Juan; Zhang, Zhi-Gang

    2012-03-01

    To approach the related mechanisms of exogenous salicylic acid (SA) in improving plant drought-resistance, this paper studied the effects of applying exogenous SA to the rhizosphere on the plant growth, membrane lipid peroxidation, proline accumulation, water use efficiency, net photosynthetic rate (Pn), and chlorophyll fluorescence parameters of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) seedlings under drought stresses (60% and 50% of saturated water capacity). Applying SA relieved the inhibitory effects of drought stress on plant growth, Pn, and water use efficiency, decreased membrane lipid peroxidation, and promoted proline accumulation. Meanwhile, the SA decreased the decrements of the maximum photochemical efficiency of PS II, actual photochemical efficiency of PS II, potential activity of PS II, effective photochemical efficiency of PS II, and photochemical quenching coefficient under drought stress significantly, and limited the increase of non-photochemical quenching coefficient. All the results suggested that applying exogenous SA could alleviate the oxidation damage of cell membrane resulted from the drought-caused membrane lipid peroxidation, improve the Pn by increasing PS II activity to benefit water utilization, enhance the regulation capability of osmosis to decrease water loss and increase water use efficiency, and thereby, improve the plant drought-resistance. PMID:22720616

  5. Toxoplasma gondii antibodies in free-living African mammals.

    PubMed

    Riemann, G P; Burridge, M J; Behymer, D E; Franti, C E

    1975-10-01

    Twelve species of free-living African mammals from Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia were tested for antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii using the indirect hemagglutination test. Of 157 animals sampled, 20 (13%) were seropositive. T. gondii antibodies were detected in Burchell's zebra, (Equus burchelli), hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius), African elephant (Loxodonta africana), defassa waterbuck (Kobus defassa), lion (Panthera leo), and rock hyrax (Procavia capensis), The highest titers were found in elephants, two having titers of 1:4096 and one of 1:8192. These results are discussed in relation to the maintenance of T. gondii among African wildlife. PMID:1195497

  6. Ectomycorrhizal symbiosis of tropical African trees.

    PubMed

    Bâ, Amadou M; Duponnois, Robin; Moyersoen, Bernard; Diédhiou, Abdala G

    2012-01-01

    The diversity, ecology and function of ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi and ectomycorrhizas (ECMs) on tropical African tree species are reviewed here. While ECMs are the most frequent mycorrhizal type in temperate and boreal forests, they concern an economically and ecologically important minority of plants in African tropical forests. In these African tropical forests, ECMs are found mainly on caesalpionioid legumes, Sarcolaenaceae, Dipterocarpaceae, Asterpeiaceae, Phyllantaceae, Sapotaceae, Papilionoideae, Gnetaceae and Proteaceae, and distributed in open, gallery and rainforests of the Guineo-Congolian basin, Zambezian Miombo woodlands of East and South-Central Africa and Sudanian savannah woodlands of the sub-sahara. Overall, EM status was confirmed in 93 (26%) among 354 tree species belonging to EM genera. In addition, 195 fungal taxa were identified using morphological descriptions and sequencing of the ML5/ML6 fragment of sporocarps and ECMs from West Africa. Analyses of the belowground EM fungal communities mostly based on fungal internal transcribed spacer sequences of ECMs from Continental Africa, Madagascar and the Seychelles also revealed more than 350 putative species of EM fungi belonging mainly to 18 phylogenetic lineages. As in temperate forests, the /russula-lactarius and /tomentella-thelephora lineages dominated EM fungal flora in tropical Africa. A low level of host preference and dominance of multi-host fungal taxa on different African adult tree species and their seedlings were revealed, suggesting a potential for the formation of common ectomycorrhizal networks. Moreover, the EM inoculum potential in terms of types and density of propagules (spores, sclerotia, EM root fragments and fragments of mycelia strands) in the soil allowed opportunistic root colonisation as well as long-term survival in the soil during the dry season. These are important characteristics when choosing an EM fungus for field application. In this respect, Thelephoroid fungal sp

  7. Astronomy for African development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Govender, Kevindran

    2011-06-01

    In recent years there have been a number of efforts across Africa to develop the field of astronomy as well as to reap benefit from astronomy for African people. This presentation will discuss the case of the SALT (Southern African Large Telescope) Collateral Benefits Programme (SCBP) which was set up to ensure societal benefit from astronomy. With African society as the target, the SCBP has embarked on various projects from school level education to public understanding of science to socio-economic development, the latter mainly being felt in the rural communities surrounding the South African Astronomical Observatory (home to SALT). A development plan for ``Astronomy in Africa'' will also be discussed. This plan has been drawn up with input from all over Africa and themed ``Astronomy for Education''. The Africa case stands as a good example for the IYA cornerstone project ``Developing Astronomy Globally'' which focuses on developing regions.

  8. African American Suicide

    MedlinePlus

    ... accounted for 83.8% of Caucasian elderly suicides. • Firearms were the predominant method of suicide among African ... per 100,000 annually. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Vital Statistics System. Mortality Data. ...

  9. Bushmeat hunting changes regeneration of African rainforests

    PubMed Central

    Effiom, Edu O.; Nuñez-Iturri, Gabriela; Smith, Henrik G.; Ottosson, Ulf; Olsson, Ola

    2013-01-01

    To assess ecological consequences of bushmeat hunting in African lowland rainforests, we compared paired sites, with high and low hunting pressure, in three areas of southeastern Nigeria. In hunted sites, populations of important seed dispersers—both small and large primates (including the Cross River gorilla, Gorilla gorilla diehli)—were drastically reduced. Large rodents were more abundant in hunted sites, even though they are hunted. Hunted and protected sites had similar mature tree communities dominated by primate-dispersed species. In protected sites, seedling communities were similar in composition to the mature trees, but in hunted sites species with other dispersal modes dominated among seedlings. Seedlings emerging 1 year after clearing of all vegetation in experimental plots showed a similar pattern to the standing seedlings. This study thus verifies the transforming effects of bushmeat hunting on plant communities of tropical forests and is one of the first studies to do so for the African continent. PMID:23516245

  10. Bushmeat hunting changes regeneration of African rainforests.

    PubMed

    Effiom, Edu O; Nuñez-Iturri, Gabriela; Smith, Henrik G; Ottosson, Ulf; Olsson, Ola

    2013-05-22

    To assess ecological consequences of bushmeat hunting in African lowland rainforests, we compared paired sites, with high and low hunting pressure, in three areas of southeastern Nigeria. In hunted sites, populations of important seed dispersers-both small and large primates (including the Cross River gorilla, Gorilla gorilla diehli)-were drastically reduced. Large rodents were more abundant in hunted sites, even though they are hunted. Hunted and protected sites had similar mature tree communities dominated by primate-dispersed species. In protected sites, seedling communities were similar in composition to the mature trees, but in hunted sites species with other dispersal modes dominated among seedlings. Seedlings emerging 1 year after clearing of all vegetation in experimental plots showed a similar pattern to the standing seedlings. This study thus verifies the transforming effects of bushmeat hunting on plant communities of tropical forests and is one of the first studies to do so for the African continent. PMID:23516245

  11. Host plant resistance in melon (Cucumis melo L.) to sweetpotato whitefly in California and Arizona

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sweetpotato whitefly (MEAM1 cryptic species of Bemisia tabaci; SPWF) feeding severely impacts fall season melon yield and quality in the lower deserts of California and Arizona. Melon accessions PI 313970 and TGR 1551 (PI 482420) have been reported to exhibit host plant resistance (HPR) to SPWF. Pot...

  12. In vivo noninvasive detection of chlorophyll distribution in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) leaves by indices based on hyperspectral imaging.

    PubMed

    Zou, Xiaobo; Shi, Jiyong; Hao, Limin; Zhao, Jiewen; Mao, Hanpin; Chen, Zhenwei; Li, Yanxiao; Holmes, Mel

    2011-11-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the spectral behavior of the relationship between reflectance and chlorophyll content and to develop a technique for non-destructive chlorophyll estimation and distribution in leaves using hyperspectral imaging. The hyperspectral imaging data cube of cucumber (Cucumis sativus) leaves in the range of 450-850 nm was investigated and preprocessed. Sixty optical signatures or indices as a function of the associated reflectance (R(λ)) at the special wavelength (λ) nm which proposed in the literatures were used to predict the total chlorophyll content in cucumber leaves. Finally, R(710)/R(760), (R(780)-R(710))/(R(780)-R(680)), (R(750)-R(705))/(R(750)+R(705)), (R(680)-R(430))/(R(680)+R(430)), R(860)/(R(550)×R(708)), (R(695-705))(-1)-(R(750-800))(-1), and REP-LEM (a index based on red edge position and estimated with a linear extrapolation method) were identified as optimum indices. Red-edge waveband (680-780 nm) appeared in all these optimum indices, indicating the importance of REP (red edge position) in chlorophyll estimation. When (R(695-705))(-1)-(R(750-800))(-1), the best index was applied to an independent validation set, chlorophyll content (r=0.8286) were reasonably well predicted, indicating model robustness. Depending on the sample, this technique enables to identify and characterize the relative content of various chlorophyll that distribution in the cucumber leaves. The map shows a relatively low level of chlorophyll at margins. Higher level can be noticed in the regions along the main veins and in some areas exhibiting dark green tissue. Our results indicate that hyperspectral imaging has considerable promise for predicting pigments in leaves and, the pigments can be detected in situ in living plant samples non-destructively. PMID:21995916

  13. Water Relations of Seed Development and Germination in Muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) : IV. Characteristics of the Perisperm during Seed Development.

    PubMed

    Welbaum, G E; Bradford, K J

    1990-04-01

    We previously reported that an apparent water potential disequilibrium is maintained late in muskmelon (Cucumis melo L.) seed development between the embryo and the surrounding fruit tissue (mesocarp). To further investigate the basis of this phenomenon, the permeability characteristics of the tissues surrounding muskmelon embryos (the mucilaginous endocarp, the testa, a 2- to 4-cell-layered perisperm and a single cell layer of endosperm) were examined from 20 to 65 days after anthesis (DAA). Water passes readily through the perisperm envelope (endosperm + perisperm), testa, and endocarp at all stages of development. Electrolyte leakage (conductivity of imbibition solutions) of individual intact seeds, decoated seeds (testa removed), and embryos (testa and perisperm envelope removed) was measured during imbibition of freshly harvested seeds. The testa accounted for up to 80% of the total electrolyte leakage. Leakage from decoated seeds fell by 8- to 10-fold between 25 and 45 DAA. Presence of the perisperm envelope prior to 40 DAA had little effect on leakage, while in more mature seeds, it reduced leakage by 2- to 3-fold. In mature seeds, freezing, soaking in methanol, autoclaving, accelerated aging, and other treatments which killed the embryos had little effect on leakage of intact or decoated seeds, but caused osmotic swelling of the perisperm envelope due to the leakage of solutes from the embryo into the space between the embryo and perisperm. The semipermeability of the perisperm envelope of mature seeds did not depend upon cellular viability or lipid membrane integrity. After maximum seed dry weight is attained (35-40 DAA), the perisperm envelope prevents the diffusion of solutes, but not of water, between the embryo and the surrounding testa, endocarp, and mesocarp tissue. PMID:16667368

  14. Mechanism of Action of the Diphenyl Ether Herbicide Acifluorfen-Methyl in Excised Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) Cotyledons 1

    PubMed Central

    Orr, Gregory L.; Hess, F. Dana

    1982-01-01

    Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) cotyledons were sensitive to the diphenyl ether herbicide acifluorfen-methyl (AFM); methyl 5-[2-chloro-4-(trifluoro-methyl)phenoxyl-2-nitrobenzoate. Injury was detected by monitoring the efflux of 86Rb+ from treated tissues after exposure to light (600 micro einsteins per meter2 per second; photosynthetically active radiation). AFM exhibited activity in green and etiolated tissues in the presence of both 1 micromolar 3-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea (DCMU) and 1 micromolar 2,5-dibromo-3-methyl-6-isopropyl-p-benzoquinone (DBMIB), inhibitors of photosynthetic electron transport. Protection against injury could be obtained by pretreating the seedlings with a carotenoid biosynthesis inhibitor, 10 micromolar fluridone {1-methyl-3-phenyl-5-[3-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]-4 (H)-pyridinone}. After a 4-hour dark pretreatment with 1 and 10 micromolar AFM, cotyledons were exposed to light (600 micro einsteins per meter2 per second; photosynthetically active radiation). Within 1 to 2 hours after light treatment, significant increases in the level of thiobarbituric acid-reacting materials could be detected. Electron microscopic observations of treated tissues revealed significant structural damage to the chloroplast envelope, tonoplast, and plasma membrane. Etiolated cucumber cotyledons treated with 1 micromolar AFM and exposed to light were less susceptible to injury when maintained in an O2-deficient atmosphere. Protection against injury could be obtained with 50 micromolar α-tocopherol. These results suggest AFM is activated in light by yellow plant pigments and then is involved in the initiation of a free radical chain reaction with polyunsaturated fatty acid moieties of phospholipid molecules making up cellular membranes. The perturbations that follow result in a loss of the membrane's selective permeability characteristics, thereby leading to cellular death. Images PMID:16662237

  15. Exocarp Properties and Transcriptomic Analysis of Cucumber (Cucumis sativus) Fruit Expressing Age-Related Resistance to Phytophthora capsici

    PubMed Central

    Ando, Kaori; Carr, Kevin M.; Colle, Marivi; Mansfeld, Ben N.; Grumet, Rebecca

    2015-01-01

    Very young cucumber (Cucumis sativus) fruit are highly susceptible to infection by the oomycete pathogen, Phytophthora capsici. As the fruit complete exponential growth, at approximately 10–12 days post pollination (dpp), they transition to resistance. The development of age-related resistance (ARR) is increasingly recognized as an important defense against pathogens, however, underlying mechanisms are largely unknown. Peel sections from cucumber fruit harvested at 8 dpp (susceptible) and 16 dpp (resistant) showed equivalent responses to inoculation as did whole fruit, indicating that the fruit surface plays an important role in defense against P. capsici. Exocarp from 16 dpp fruit had thicker cuticles, and methanolic extracts of peel tissue inhibited growth of P. capsici in vitro, suggesting physical or chemical components to the ARR. Transcripts specifically expressed in the peel vs. pericarp showed functional differentiation. Transcripts predominantly expressed in the peel were consistent with fruit surface associated functions including photosynthesis, cuticle production, response to the environment, and defense. Peel-specific transcripts that exhibited increased expression in 16 dpp fruit relative to 8 dpp fruit, were highly enriched (P<0.0001) for response to stress, signal transduction, and extracellular and transport functions. Specific transcripts included genes associated with potential physical barriers (i.e., cuticle), chemical defenses (flavonoid biosynthesis), oxidative stress, penetration defense, and molecular pattern (MAMP)-triggered or effector-triggered (R-gene mediated) pathways. The developmentally regulated changes in gene expression between peels from susceptible- and resistant- age fruits suggest programming for increased defense as the organ reaches full size. PMID:26528543

  16. African rainforests: past, present and future

    PubMed Central

    Malhi, Yadvinder; Adu-Bredu, Stephen; Asare, Rebecca A.; Lewis, Simon L.; Mayaux, Philippe

    2013-01-01

    The rainforests are the great green heart of Africa, and present a unique combination of ecological, climatic and human interactions. In this synthesis paper, we review the past and present state processes of change in African rainforests, and explore the challenges and opportunities for maintaining a viable future for these biomes. We draw in particular on the insights and new analyses emerging from the Theme Issue on ‘African rainforests: past, present and future’ of Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B. A combination of features characterize the African rainforest biome, including a history of climate variation; forest expansion and retreat; a long history of human interaction with the biome; a relatively low plant species diversity but large tree biomass; a historically exceptionally high animal biomass that is now being severely hunted down; the dominance of selective logging; small-scale farming and bushmeat hunting as the major forms of direct human pressure; and, in Central Africa, the particular context of mineral- and oil-driven economies that have resulted in unusually low rates of deforestation and agricultural activity. We conclude by discussing how this combination of factors influences the prospects for African forests in the twenty-first century. PMID:23878339

  17. Chilocoris capensis n. sp., the first species of the genus Chilocoris Mayr, 1865 (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Cydnidae) recorded in the Republic of South Africa with an annotated checklist of South African burrower bugs.

    PubMed

    Lis, Jerzy A; Lis, Barbara; Compton, Stephen G

    2016-01-01

    Chilocoris capensis n. sp. collected from fallen ripe figs of broom cluster fig Ficus sur Forsskål, 1775, the first burrower bug species of the genus Chilocoris Mayr, 1865 recorded in the Republic of South Africa, is described and compared with Chilocoris laevicollis Horváth, 1919, the morphologically most closely allied Afrotropical species. Additionally, an annotated checklist of burrower bug species recorded in the Republic of South Africa is provided. The known biology of Afrotropical Chilocoris species is briefly summarized. PMID:27515635

  18. Spatio-temporal isotopic signatures (δ13 C and δ15 N) reveal that two sympatric West African mullet species do not feed on the same basal production sources.

    PubMed

    Le Loc'h, F; Durand, J-D; Diop, K; Panfili, J

    2015-04-01

    Potential trophic competition between two sympatric mullet species, Mugil cephalus and Mugil curema, was explored in the hypersaline estuary of the Saloum Delta (Senegal) using δ(13) C and δ(15) N composition of muscle tissues. Between species, δ(15) N compositions were similar, suggesting a similar trophic level, while the difference in δ(13) C compositions indicated that these species did not feed from exactly the same basal production sources or at least not in the same proportions. This result provides the first evidence of isotopic niche segregation between two limno-benthophageous species belonging to the geographically widespread, and often locally abundant, Mugilidae family. PMID:25846862

  19. Bergbambos and Oldeania, new genera of African bamboos (Poaceae, Bambusoideae)

    PubMed Central

    Stapleton, Chris M. A.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Two new monotypic genera, Bergbambos and Oldeania are described for African temperate bamboo species in the tribe Arundinarieae, after a comparison of their morphological characteristics with those of similar species from Asia. Morphological differences are supported by their isolated geographical distributions. Molecular evidence does not support the inclusion of these species in related Asian genera, recognising them instead as distinct lineages. New combinations Bergbambos tessellata and Oldeania alpina are made. PMID:24198715

  20. African-Americans and Alzheimer's

    MedlinePlus

    ... Share Plus on Google Plus African-Americans and Alzheimer's alz.org | IHaveAlz Introduction 10 Warning Signs Brain ... African-Americans are at a higher risk for Alzheimer's disease. Many Americans dismiss the warning signs of ...

  1. East African cheetahs: evidence for two population bottlenecks?

    PubMed Central

    O'Brien, S J; Wildt, D E; Bush, M; Caro, T M; FitzGibbon, C; Aggundey, I; Leakey, R E

    1987-01-01

    A combined population genetic and reproductive analysis was undertaken to compare free-ranging cheetahs from east Africa (Acinonyx jubatus raineyi) with the genetically impoverished and reproductively impaired south African subspecies (Acinonyx jubatus jubatus). Like that of their south African counterparts, the quality of semen specimens from east African cheetahs was poor, with a low concentration of spermatozoa (25.3 X 10(6) per ejaculate) and a high incidence of morphological abnormalities (79%). From an electrophoretic survey of the products of 49 genetic loci in A. jubatus raineyi, two allozyme polymorphisms were detected; one of these, for a nonspecific esterase, shows an allele that is rare (less than 1% incidence) in south African specimens. Estimates of polymorphism (2-4%) and average heterozygosity (0.0004-0.014) affirm the cheetah as the least genetically variable felid species. The genetic distance between south and east African cheetahs was low (0.004), suggesting that the development of genetic uniformity preceded the recent geographic isolation of the subspecies. We propose that at least two population bottlenecks followed by inbreeding produced the modern cheetah species. The first and most extreme was ancient, possibly late Pleistocene (circa 10,000 years ago); the second was more recent (within the last century) and led to the south African populations. PMID:3467370

  2. Mechanisms and tempo of evolution in the African Guineo-Congolian rainforest.

    PubMed Central

    Plana, Vanessa

    2004-01-01

    This paper reviews how and when African rainforest diversity arose, presenting evidence from both plant and animal studies. Preliminary investigations show that these African forests are an assemblage of species of varying age. Phylogenetic evidence, from both African rainforest angiosperms and vertebrates, suggest a Tertiary origin for the major lineages in some of these groups. In groups where savannah species are well represented and rainforest species are a minority, the latter appear to be relics of a Mid-Tertiary rainforest. By contrast, species that are primarily adapted to rainforest have arisen in the past 10 Myr with the main morphological innovations dating from the Late Miocene, and Quaternary speciation dominating in large, morphologically homogeneous groups. The small number of species-level phylogenies for African rainforest plants hinders a more incisive and detailed study into the historical assembly of these continental forests. PMID:15519974

  3. The Struggles over African Languages

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maseko, Pam; Vale, Peter

    2016-01-01

    In this interview, African Language expert Pam Maseko speaks of her own background and her first encounter with culture outside of her mother tongue, isiXhosa. A statistical breakdown of South African languages is provided as background. She discusses Western (originally missionary) codification of African languages and suggests that this approach…

  4. Psychological Misdiagnosis of African Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garretson, Deborah J.

    1993-01-01

    Reviews historical and current problems with making accurate psychological diagnoses of African Americans. Suggests that misdiagnosis is strongly related to pathologization of African-American culture itself. Explores diagnostic process, stereotypes of African-American psychopathology, cultural differences in values and life stressors, and…

  5. Narcolepsy in African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Kawai, Makoto; O'Hara, Ruth; Einen, Mali; Lin, Ling; Mignot, Emmanuel

    2015-01-01

    Study Objectives: Although narcolepsy affects 0.02–0.05% of individuals in various ethnic groups, clinical presentation in different ethnicities has never been fully characterized. Our goal was to study phenotypic expression across ethnicities in the United States. Design/Setting: Cases of narcolepsy from 1992 to 2013 were identified from searches of the Stanford Center for Narcolepsy Research database. International Classification of Sleep Disorders, Third Edition diagnosis criteria for type 1 and type 2 narcolepsy were used for inclusion, but subjects were separated as with and without cataplexy for the purpose of data presentation. Information extracted included demographics, ethnicity and clinical data, HLA-DQB1*06:02, polysomnography (PSG), multiple sleep latency test (MSLT) data, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) hypocretin-1 level. Patients: 182 African-Americans, 839 Caucasians, 35 Asians, and 41 Latinos with narcolepsy. Results: Sex ratio, PSG, and MSLT findings did not differ across ethnicities. Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) score was higher and age of onset of sleepiness earlier in African Americans compared with other ethnicities. HLA-DQB1*06:02 positivity was higher in African Americans (91.0%) versus others (76.6% in Caucasians, 80.0% in Asians, and 65.0% in Latinos). CSF hypocretin-1 level, obtained in 222 patients, was more frequently low (≤ 110 pg/ml) in African Americans (93.9%) versus Caucasians (61.5%), Asians (85.7%) and Latinos (75.0%). In subjects with low CSF hypocretin-1, African Americans (28.3%) were 4.5 fold more likely to be without cataplexy when compared with Caucasians (8.1%). Conclusions: Narcolepsy in African Americans is characterized by earlier symptom onset, higher Epworth Sleepiness Scale score, higher HLA-DQB1*06:02 positivity, and low cerebrospinal fluid hypocretin-1 level in the absence of cataplexy. In African Americans, more subjects without cataplexy have type 1 narcolepsy. Citation: Kawai M, O'Hara R, Einen M, Lin L

  6. A PROSPECTIVE PHARMACOLOGICAL REVIEW OF MEDICINAL HERBS, CUCUMIS MELO AND BERBERIS VULGARIS, COMMONLY USED IN THE TREATMENT OF RENAL DISEASES IN PAKISTAN.

    PubMed

    Ullah, Naveed; Khan, Salimullah; Khan, Abad; Ahmad, Waqar; Shah, Yasar; Ahmad, Lateef; Ullah, Ihsan

    2015-01-01

    The kidneys are important organs which have many functions in the body, including the production of hormones, absorbtion of minerals and the filtration of blood, producing urine. Their failure can be fatal, therefore, to focus the study of such herbs which may be useful in treating renal disease is the need of hour. In Pakistan, Cucumis melo and Berberis vulgaris has been commonly used for renal problems. In both of these plants were found flavonoids, alkaloids and terpenes, which may stand for their renal protective properties. Their reported vitamin E contents and antioxidant potentials also provide a base for their defensive mechanism, may be due to their free radical scavenging properties. Further, their diuretic and urinary tract anti-ulcer properties also support their traditional use in renal diseases. Their anti-histaminic and anti-cholinergic properties also provide symptomatic treatment by decreasing prostaglandin level and due to antispasmodic properties. Concluding, both of these plants can be used for renal problems, especially Cucumis melo, which have both the nutritive and medicinal properties. Therefore, the renal disease patients are advised to take much of this particular fruit, especially their seeds to make their kidneys healthy. PMID:26647620

  7. The Genetic Structure and History of Africans and African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Tishkoff, Sarah A.; Reed, Floyd A.; Friedlaender, Françoise R.; Ehret, Christopher; Ranciaro, Alessia; Froment, Alain; Hirbo, Jibril B.; Awomoyi, Agnes A.; Bodo, Jean-Marie; Doumbo, Ogobara; Ibrahim, Muntaser; Juma, Abdalla T.; Kotze, Maritha J.; Lema, Godfrey; Moore, Jason H.; Mortensen, Holly; Nyambo, Thomas B.; Omar, Sabah A.; Powell, Kweli; Pretorius, Gideon S.; Smith, Michael W.; Thera, Mahamadou A.; Wambebe, Charles; Weber, James L.; Williams, Scott M.

    2010-01-01

    Africa is the source of all modern humans, but characterization of genetic variation and of relationships among populations across the continent has been enigmatic. We studied 121 African populations, four African American populations, and 60 non-African populations for patterns of variation at 1327 nuclear microsatellite and insertion/deletion markers. We identified 14 ancestral population clusters in Africa that correlate with self-described ethnicity and shared cultural and/or linguistic properties. We observed high levels of mixed ancestry in most populations, reflecting historical migration events across the continent. Our data also provide evidence for shared ancestry among geographically diverse hunter-gatherer populations (Khoesan speakers and Pygmies). The ancestry of African Americans is predominantly from Niger-Kordofanian (~71%), European (~13%), and other African (~8%) populations, although admixture levels varied considerably among individuals. This study helps tease apart the complex evolutionary history of Africans and African Americans, aiding both anthropological and genetic epidemiologic studies. PMID:19407144

  8. The Other African Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Matory, J. Lorand

    Black North America is ethnically and culturally diverse. It contains many groups who do not call themselves or have not always called themselves "Negro,""Black,""African-American," and so forth, such as Louisiana Creoles of color and many of the Indian tribes east of the Mississippi. There are also numerous North American ethnic groups of African…

  9. African American rhinoplasty.

    PubMed

    Boyette, Jennings R; Stucker, Fred J

    2014-08-01

    Rhinoplasty in patients of African descent requires a patient-specific approach, because the goals and ideal proportions differ from the white nose. This article discusses approaches to surgical correction of common anatomic variations. In addition, common pitfalls are outlined. PMID:25049123

  10. Elective: African Literature.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jenkins, Kenneth V.

    The make-up of a course in African literature for high school students is discussed. It is pointed out that the course can be constructed on already familiar lines. High school students will be able to describe clearly, for example, the relationship between environment and character or the dilemma of characters caught between traditional values…

  11. High presence/absence gene variability in defense-related gene clusters of Cucumis melo

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Changes in the copy number of DNA sequences are one of the main mechanisms generating genome variability in eukaryotes. These changes are often related to phenotypic effects such as genetic disorders or novel pathogen resistance. The increasing availability of genome sequences through the application of next-generation massive sequencing technologies has allowed the study of genomic polymorphisms at both the interspecific and intraspecific levels, thus helping to understand how species adapt to changing environments through genome variability. Results Data on gene presence/absence variation (PAV) in melon was obtained by resequencing a cultivated accession and an old-relative melon variety, and using previously obtained resequencing data from three other melon cultivars, among them DHL92, on which the current draft melon genome sequence is based. A total of 1,697 PAV events were detected, involving 4.4% of the predicted melon gene complement. In all, an average 1.5% of genes were absent from each analyzed cultivar as compared to the DHL92 reference genome. The most populated functional category among the 304 PAV genes of known function was that of stress response proteins (30% of all classified PAVs). Our results suggest that genes from multi-copy families are five times more likely to be affected by PAV than singleton genes. Also, the chance of genes present in the genome in tandem arrays being affected by PAV is double that of isolated genes, with PAV genes tending to be in longer clusters. The highest concentration of PAV events detected in the melon genome was found in a 1.1 Mb region of linkage group V, which also shows the highest density of melon stress-response genes. In particular, this region contains the longest continuous gene-containing PAV sequence so far identified in melon. Conclusions The first genome-wide report of PAV variation among several melon cultivars is presented here. Multi-copy and clustered genes, especially those with

  12. HANABA TARANU regulates the shoot apical meristem and leaf development in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Lian; Yan, Shuangshuang; Jiang, Li; Liu, Meiling; Zhang, Juan; Zhao, Jianyu; Zhao, Wensheng; Han, Ying-yan; Wang, Qian; Zhang, Xiaolan

    2015-01-01

    The shoot apical meristem (SAM) is essential for continuous organogenesis in higher plants, while the leaf is the primary source organ and the leaf shape directly affects the efficiency of photosynthesis. HANABA TARANU (HAN) encodes a GATA3-type transcription factor that functions in floral organ development, SAM organization, and embryo development in Arabidopsis, but is involved in suppressing bract outgrowth and promoting branching in grass species. Here the function of the HAN homologue CsHAN1 was characterized in cucumber, an important vegetable with great agricultural and economic value. CsHAN1 is predominantly expressed at the junction of the SAM and the stem, and can partially rescue the han-2 floral organ phenotype in Arabidopsis. Overexpression and RNAi of CsHAN1 transgenic cucumber resulted in retarded growth early after embryogenesis and produced highly lobed leaves. Further, it was found that CsHAN1 may regulate SAM development through regulating the WUSCHEL (WUS) and SHOOT MERISTEMLESS (STM) pathways, and mediate leaf development through a complicated gene regulatory network in cucumber. PMID:26320238

  13. HANABA TARANU regulates the shoot apical meristem and leaf development in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.).

    PubMed

    Ding, Lian; Yan, Shuangshuang; Jiang, Li; Liu, Meiling; Zhang, Juan; Zhao, Jianyu; Zhao, Wensheng; Han, Ying-Yan; Wang, Qian; Zhang, Xiaolan

    2015-12-01

    The shoot apical meristem (SAM) is essential for continuous organogenesis in higher plants, while the leaf is the primary source organ and the leaf shape directly affects the efficiency of photosynthesis. HANABA TARANU (HAN) encodes a GATA3-type transcription factor that functions in floral organ development, SAM organization, and embryo development in Arabidopsis, but is involved in suppressing bract outgrowth and promoting branching in grass species. Here the function of the HAN homologue CsHAN1 was characterized in cucumber, an important vegetable with great agricultural and economic value. CsHAN1 is predominantly expressed at the junction of the SAM and the stem, and can partially rescue the han-2 floral organ phenotype in Arabidopsis. Overexpression and RNAi of CsHAN1 transgenic cucumber resulted in retarded growth early after embryogenesis and produced highly lobed leaves. Further, it was found that CsHAN1 may regulate SAM development through regulating the WUSCHEL (WUS) and SHOOT MERISTEMLESS (STM) pathways, and mediate leaf development through a complicated gene regulatory network in cucumber. PMID:26320238

  14. African Ancestry Is Associated with Asthma Risk in African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Pino-Yanes, María; Wade, Michael S.; Pérez-Méndez, Lina; Kittles, Rick A.; Wang, Deli; Papaiahgari, Srinivas; Ford, Jean G.; Kumar, Rajesh; Garcia, Joe G. N.

    2012-01-01

    Background Asthma is a common complex condition with clear racial and ethnic differences in both prevalence and severity. Asthma consultation rates, mortality, and severe symptoms are greatly increased in African descent populations of developed countries. African ancestry has been associated with asthma, total serum IgE and lower pulmonary function in African-admixed populations. To replicate previous findings, here we aimed to examine whether African ancestry was associated with asthma susceptibility in African Americans. In addition, we examined for the first time whether African ancestry was associated with asthma exacerbations. Methodology/Principal Findings After filtering for self-reported ancestry and genotype data quality, samples from 1,117 self-reported African-American individuals from New York and Baltimore (394 cases, 481 controls), and Chicago (321 cases followed for asthma exacerbations) were analyzed. Genetic ancestry was estimated based on ancestry informative markers (AIMs) selected for being highly divergent among European and West African populations (95 AIMs for New York and Baltimore, and 66 independent AIMs for Chicago). Among case-control samples, the mean African ancestry was significantly higher in asthmatics than in non-asthmatics (82.0±14.0% vs. 77.8±18.1%, mean difference 4.2% [95% confidence interval (CI):2.0–6.4], p<0.0001). This association remained significant after adjusting for potential confounders (odds ratio: 4.55, 95% CI: 1.69–12.29, p = 0.003). African ancestry failed to show an association with asthma exacerbations (p = 0.965) using a model based on longitudinal data of the number of exacerbations followed over 1.5 years. Conclusions/Significance These data replicate previous findings indicating that African ancestry constitutes a risk factor for asthma and suggest that elevated asthma rates in African Americans can be partially attributed to African genetic ancestry. PMID:22235241

  15. Compensation effect of bacterium containing biofertilizer on the growth of Cucumis sativus L. under Al-stress conditions.

    PubMed

    Tóth, Brigitta; Lévai, L; Kovács, B; Varga, Mária Borbélyné; Veres, Szilvia

    2013-03-01

    Biofertilizers are used to improve soil fertility and plant production in sustainable agriculture. However, their applicability depends on several environmental parameters. The aim of our study was to evaluate the effect of free-living bacteria containing fertilizer on the growth of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. cvs. Delicates) under aluminium (Al) stress. Different responses to Al stress of cucumber growth parameters were examined in terms of root elongation and physiological traits, such as Spad index (relative chlorophyll value), biomass accumulation of root and shoot, Al uptake and selected element contents (Fe, Mn, Zn, Mg) of leaves and root. The applied bacteria containing biofertilizer contains Azotobacter chroococcum and Bacillus megaterium. The dry weights of cucumber shoots and roots decreased in line with the increasing Al concentration. Due to different Al treatments (10-3 M, 10-4 M) higher Al concentration was observed in the leaves, while the amounts of other elements (Fe, Mn, Zn, Mg) decreased. This high Al content of the leaves decreased below the control value when biofertilizer was applied. In the case of the roots the additional biofertilizer treatments compensated the effect of Al. The relative chlorophyll content was reduced during Al-stress in older plants and the biofertilizer moderated this effect. The root/shoot ratio was decreased in all the Al-treatments in comparison to the control. The living bacteria containing fertilizer also had a modifying effect. The root/shoot ratio increased at the 10-4 M Al2(SO4)2 + biofertilizer and 10-4 M Al(NO3)3 + biofertilizer treatments compared to the control and Al-treatments. According to our results the biofertilizer is an alternative nutrient supply for replacing chemical fertilizers because it enhances dry matter production. Biofertilizer usage is also offered under Al polluted environmental conditions. Although, the nutrient solution is a clean system where we can examine the main processes without

  16. Two new Myxidium species (Myxosporea: Myxidiidae) infecting the gallbladder of African flying fish, Cheilopogon nigricans and Suez fusilier, Caesio suevicus from the Red Sea, Egypt: a morphological and morphometric study.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Baki, Abdel-Azeem Sh

    2009-08-01

    Myxidium maamouni sp. n. and Myxidium aydai sp. n. were described from the gallbladder of the African flying fish Cheilopogon nigricans and Suez fusilier Caesio suevicus, respectively. Fishes were collected from the Red Sea at Al-Quseir, Egypt. M. maamouni have irregular to mostly rounded polysporous plasmodia with diameter of 27 microm. Spores were sigmoid or S-shaped and sometimes spindle-shaped in the frontal view with smooth valves. They measured 13.5 x 8.0 x 8.2 microm in size. Their polar capsules were equal pyriform and measured 7.0 x 3.2 microm in size with nine to 12 coils. Spores of M. aydai were spindle-shaped in the frontal view with thin smooth valves. They measured 23.0 x 5.6 x 5.5 microm in size. Their polar capsules were pyriform and measured 7.2 x 3.4 microm in size with eight to nine coils. PMID:19347364

  17. Cucumis melo ssp. Agrestis var. Agrestis Ameliorates High Fat Diet Induced Dyslipidemia in Syrian Golden Hamsters and Inhibits Adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 Adipocytes

    PubMed Central

    Shankar, Kripa; Singh, Sumit K.; Kumar, Durgesh; Varshney, Salil; Gupta, Abhishek; Rajan, Sujith; Srivastava, Ankita; Beg, Muheeb; Srivastava, Anurag Kumar; Kanojiya, Sanjeev; Mishra, Dipak K.; Gaikwad, Anil N.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Cucumis melo ssp. agrestis var. agrestis (CMA) is a wild variety of C. melo. This study aimed to explore anti-dyslipidemic and anti-adipogenic potential of CMA. Materials and Methods: For initial anti-dyslipidemic and antihyperglycemic potential of CMA fruit extract (CMFE), male Syrian golden hamsters were fed a chow or high-fat diet with or without CMFE (100 mg/kg). Further, we did fractionation of this CMFE into two fractions namely; CMA water fraction (CMWF) and CMA hexane fraction (CMHF). Phytochemical screening was done with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry LC- (MS)/MS and direct analysis in real time-MS to detect active compounds in the fractions. Further, high-fat diet fed dyslipidemic hamsters were treated with CMWF and CMHF at 50 mg/kg for 7 days. Results: Oral administration of CMFE and both fractions (CMWF and CMHF) reduced the total cholesterol, triglycerides, low‐density lipoprotein cholesterol, and very low‐density lipoprotein-cholesterol levels in high fat diet-fed dyslipidemic hamsters. CMHF also modulated expression of genes involved in lipogenesis, lipid metabolism, and reverse cholesterol transport. Standard biochemical diagnostic tests suggested that neither of fractions causes any toxicity to hamster liver or kidneys. CMFE and CMHF also decreased oil-red-O accumulation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Conclusion: Based on these results, it is concluded that CMA possesses anti-dyslipidemic and anti-hyperglycemic activity along with the anti-adipogenic activity. SUMMARY The oral administration of Cucumis melo agrestis fruit extract (CMFE) and its fractions (CMWF and CMHF) improved serum lipid profile in HFD fed dyslipidemic hamsters.CMFE, CMWF and CMHF significantly attenuated body weight gain and eWAT hypertrophy.The CMHF decreased lipogenesis in both liver and adipose tissue.CMFE and CMHF also inhibited adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Abbreviation used: CMA: Cucumis melo ssp. agrestis var. agrestis, CMFE: CMA fruit extract, CMWF

  18. Solving the Traveling Salesman's Problem Using the African Buffalo Optimization

    PubMed Central

    Odili, Julius Beneoluchi; Mohmad Kahar, Mohd Nizam

    2016-01-01

    This paper proposes the African Buffalo Optimization (ABO) which is a new metaheuristic algorithm that is derived from careful observation of the African buffalos, a species of wild cows, in the African forests and savannahs. This animal displays uncommon intelligence, strategic organizational skills, and exceptional navigational ingenuity in its traversal of the African landscape in search for food. The African Buffalo Optimization builds a mathematical model from the behavior of this animal and uses the model to solve 33 benchmark symmetric Traveling Salesman's Problem and six difficult asymmetric instances from the TSPLIB. This study shows that buffalos are able to ensure excellent exploration and exploitation of the search space through regular communication, cooperation, and good memory of its previous personal exploits as well as tapping from the herd's collective exploits. The results obtained by using the ABO to solve these TSP cases were benchmarked against the results obtained by using other popular algorithms. The results obtained using the African Buffalo Optimization algorithm are very competitive. PMID:26880872

  19. Solving the Traveling Salesman's Problem Using the African Buffalo Optimization.

    PubMed

    Odili, Julius Beneoluchi; Mohmad Kahar, Mohd Nizam

    2016-01-01

    This paper proposes the African Buffalo Optimization (ABO) which is a new metaheuristic algorithm that is derived from careful observation of the African buffalos, a species of wild cows, in the African forests and savannahs. This animal displays uncommon intelligence, strategic organizational skills, and exceptional navigational ingenuity in its traversal of the African landscape in search for food. The African Buffalo Optimization builds a mathematical model from the behavior of this animal and uses the model to solve 33 benchmark symmetric Traveling Salesman's Problem and six difficult asymmetric instances from the TSPLIB. This study shows that buffalos are able to ensure excellent exploration and exploitation of the search space through regular communication, cooperation, and good memory of its previous personal exploits as well as tapping from the herd's collective exploits. The results obtained by using the ABO to solve these TSP cases were benchmarked against the results obtained by using other popular algorithms. The results obtained using the African Buffalo Optimization algorithm are very competitive. PMID:26880872

  20. Exploring African Rice Genetic Diversity for Genetic Stock Development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    West African cultivated rice (Oryza glaberrima) and its progenitor species, O. barthii, are a source of genes for crop improvement especially pest resistance (blast, sheath blight, brown spot, bacterial blight, bacterial leaf streak, green leafhopper) and tolerance to abiotic stress (drought, acid s...

  1. Understanding traditional African healing

    PubMed Central

    MOKGOBI, M.G.

    2015-01-01

    Traditional African healing has been in existence for many centuries yet many people still seem not to understand how it relates to God and religion/spirituality. Some people seem to believe that traditional healers worship the ancestors and not God. It is therefore the aim of this paper to clarify this relationship by discussing a chain of communication between the worshipers and the Almighty God. Other aspects of traditional healing namely types of traditional healers, training of traditional healers as well as the role of traditional healers in their communities are discussed. In conclusion, the services of traditional healers go far beyond the uses of herbs for physical illnesses. Traditional healers serve many roles which include but not limited to custodians of the traditional African religion and customs, educators about culture, counselors, social workers and psychologists. PMID:26594664

  2. African horse sickness.

    PubMed

    Zientara, S; Weyer, C T; Lecollinet, S

    2015-08-01

    African horse sickness (AHS) is a devastating disease of equids caused by an arthropod-borne virus belonging to the Reoviridae family, genus Orbivirus. It is considered a major health threat for horses in endemic areas in sub-Saharan Africa. African horse sickness virus (AHSV) repeatedly caused large epizootics in the Mediterranean region (North Africa and southern Europe in particular) as a result of trade in infected equids. The unexpected emergence of a closely related virus, the bluetongue virus, in northern Europe in 2006 has raised fears about AHSV introduction into Europe, and more specifically into AHSV-free regions that have reported the presence of AHSV vectors, e.g. Culicoides midges. North African and European countries should be prepared to face AHSV incursions in the future, especially since two AHSV serotypes (serotypes 2 and 7) have recently spread northwards to western (e.g. Senegal, Nigeria, Gambia) and eastern Africa (Ethiopia), where historically only serotype 9 had been isolated. The authors review key elements of AHS epidemiology, surveillance and prophylaxis. PMID:26601437

  3. East African Rift Valley, Kenya

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This rare, cloud free view of the East African Rift Valley, Kenya (1.5N, 35.5E) shows a clear view of the Turkwell River Valley, an offshoot of the African REift System. The East African Rift is part of a vast plate fracture which extends from southern Turkey, through the Red Sea, East Africa and into Mozambique. Dark green patches of forests are seen along the rift margin and tea plantations occupy the cooler higher ground.

  4. Competition for in vitro (/sup 3/H)gibberellin A/sub 4/ binding in cucumber by gibberellins and their derivatives. [Cucumis sativus L. cv National Pickling

    SciTech Connect

    Yalpani, N.; Srivastava, L.M.

    1985-12-01

    The gibberellin (GA) binding properties of a cytosol fraction from hypocotyls of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. cv National Pickling) were examined using a DEAE filter paper assay, (/sup 3/H)GA/sub 4/, and over 20 GAs, GA derivatives and other growth regulators. The results demonstrate structural specificity of the binding protein for ..gamma..-lactonic C-19 GAs with a 3 ..beta..-hydroxyl and a C-6 carboxyl group. Additional hydroxylations of the A, C, or D ring of the ent-gibberellane skeleton and methylation of the C-6 carboxyl impede or abolish binding affinity. Bioassay data are generally supported by the in vitro results but significantly GA/sub 9/ and GA/sub 36/, both considered to be precursors of GA/sub 4/ in cucumber, show no affinity for the binding protein. The results are discussed in relation to the active site of the putative GA/sub 4/ receptor in cucumber.

  5. Epileptiform seizures in captive African vultures.

    PubMed

    Mundy, P J; Foggin, C M

    1981-04-01

    African vultures are held in captivity at Salisbury, Johannesburg, and Durban, and in each place a number of birds showed epileptiform seizures. Of 17 griffon vultures (Gyps africanus and G. coprotheres) in Salisbury, three recovered and 11 died after one or more seizures. Of eight vultures of three other species, one Lappetfaced Vulture (Torgos tracheliotus) recovered and one Whiteheaded Vulture (Trigonoceps occipitalis) died. A variety of diagnostic tests, in particular levels of serum calcium and blood glucose, and histological examination of brains, has so far failed to reveal a cause. PMID:7241712

  6. Genetic identification of endangered North African ungulates using noninvasive sampling.

    PubMed

    Silva, Teresa Luísa; Godinho, Raquel; Castro, Diana; Abáigar, Teresa; Brito, José Carlos; Alves, Paulo Célio

    2015-05-01

    North African ungulates include several threatened and emblematic species, yet are poorly studied mainly due to their remoteness and elusiveness. Noninvasive sampling provides a useful approach to obtain ecological and genetic information essential to guide conservation actions. The very first and most important step in conservation planning is to accurately identify species, and molecular genetics has been proved to be a useful tool. Several molecular genetics protocols are available for species identification, even for samples with poor quality DNA, such as faeces, hairs or bones. Most of these protocols use mitochondrial DNA for barcoding despite this marker being especially prone to problems, including mtDNA introgression, nuclear insert copies, high intraspecific diversity or heteroplasmy. In this work, we developed a molecular method based on polymorphisms in small fragments of the mitochondrial cytochrome b (cytb, mtDNA) and the nuclear kappa casein genes (KCAS, nDNA) for identifying endangered North African ungulates. These fragments revealed polymorphisms, including species-specific variation, which allowed species identification of nine ungulate species that co-occur in North Africa. The method was validated across more than 400 samples, including different types of noninvasive samples collected in the field. The simplicity, high reliability and relative low cost of the described method make it a promising tool to improve ecological studies of the North African ungulates and consequently, the implementation of more efficient management and conservation plans for these endangered ungulates. PMID:25256349

  7. First record of the African-Indian centipede genus Digitipes Attems, 1930 (Scolopendromorpha: Otostigminae) from Myanmar, and the systematic position of a new species based on molecular phylogenetics.

    PubMed

    Siriwut, Warut; Edgecombe, Gregory D; Sutcharit, Chirasak; Tongkerd, Piyoros; Panha, Somsak

    2015-01-01

    The first Southeast Asian record of the scolopendrid centipede Digitipes Attems, 1930, has been collected and analyzed based on a new species from Myanmar, males possessing a distomedial process on the ultimate leg femur that is diagnostic of the genus. Digitipes kalewaensis n. sp., described herein, is distinguished from other members of Digitipes by its 2.5 to 2.7 dorsally glabrous antennal articles, an unusually long basal suture on the tooth-plates, absence of a lateral spine on the coxopleural process, and a lack of median and dorso-median spines on the ultimate leg prefemur. Maximum likelihood and Bayesian analyses of two molecular markers (mitochondrial COI and 16S rRNA) supported the proposal of a new species from Myanmar. The phylogenetic tree identifies Digitipes barnabasi from the Western Ghats, India, in a polytomy with members of other genera of Otostigminae (Otostigmus, Ethmostigmus and Rhysida) and a robust Indian-Burmese Digitipes clade in which D. kalewaensis n. sp. is resolved as sister group to a clade composed of most Indian species. Available molecular dates for the diversification of Indian Digitipes are consistent with introduction of the genus into SE Asia when the Indian subcontinent made contact with Myanmar in the early Palaeogene. PMID:25781815

  8. Out of Africa: The first introduced African geophilomorph centipede record from a European greenhouse (Chilopoda: Geophilidae).

    PubMed

    Dányi, László; Tuf, Ivan Hadrián

    2016-01-01

    In Europe, 184 species of Geophilomorpha are recognised (Bonato & Minelli 2014) of which eight are evaluated as alien to the region (Stoev et al. 2010, Decker et al. 2014). Four of these have been reported from greenhouses exclusively: Mecistocephalus guildingii Newport, 1843, Mecistocephalus maxillaris (Gervais, 1837), Tygarrup javanicus Attems, 1929 and Pectiniunguis pauperatus Silvestri, 1907. In this paper, we report another species, Polygonarea silvicola Lawrence, 1955, which is the first Geophilomorpha species of unambiguous African origin in Europe. Description of the specimen found in Olomouc (Czech Republic) is provided. Co-occurrence of another African species, the lithobiomorph Lamyctes africanus (Porath, 1871) (also new for Czech Republic) is also reported here. PMID:27395899

  9. A Teacher's Guide to African Narratives. Studies in African Literature.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Brien, Sara Talis

    This guide is designed to help secondary school teachers include African literature in their classes. It furnishes English and social studies teachers with a foundation for teaching African literature by offering critical commentary on the texts themselves. A synthesis of anthropological and historical material is presented to help both teachers…

  10. Bounding Species Distribution Models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stohlgren, Thomas J.; Jarnevich, Cahterine S.; Morisette, Jeffrey T.; Esaias, Wayne E.

    2011-01-01

    Species distribution models are increasing in popularity for mapping suitable habitat for species of management concern. Many investigators now recognize that extrapolations of these models with geographic information systems (GIS) might be sensitive to the environmental bounds of the data used in their development, yet there is no recommended best practice for "clamping" model extrapolations. We relied on two commonly used modeling approaches: classification and regression tree (CART) and maximum entropy (Maxent) models, and we tested a simple alteration of the model extrapolations, bounding extrapolations to the maximum and minimum values of primary environmental predictors, to provide a more realistic map of suitable habitat of hybridized Africanized honey bees in the southwestern United States. Findings suggest that multiple models of bounding, and the most conservative bounding of species distribution models, like those presented here, should probably replace the unbounded or loosely bounded techniques currently used [Current Zoology 57 (5): 642-647, 2011].

  11. Bounding species distribution models

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stohlgren, T.J.; Jarnevich, C.S.; Esaias, W.E.; Morisette, J.T.

    2011-01-01

    Species distribution models are increasing in popularity for mapping suitable habitat for species of management concern. Many investigators now recognize that extrapolations of these models with geographic information systems (GIS) might be sensitive to the environmental bounds of the data used in their development, yet there is no recommended best practice for "clamping" model extrapolations. We relied on two commonly used modeling approaches: classification and regression tree (CART) and maximum entropy (Maxent) models, and we tested a simple alteration of the model extrapolations, bounding extrapolations to the maximum and minimum values of primary environmental predictors, to provide a more realistic map of suitable habitat of hybridized Africanized honey bees in the southwestern United States. Findings suggest that multiple models of bounding, and the most conservative bounding of species distribution models, like those presented here, should probably replace the unbounded or loosely bounded techniques currently used. ?? 2011 Current Zoology.

  12. African-American Sacred Music.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bailey, A. Peter

    1991-01-01

    The history of African-American sacred music is traced from the time of slavery to the present interest in gospel music. The religious music of African Americans is geared toward liberation themes. It is important that this music does not dilute its power through cross-over with other music forms. (SLD)

  13. Three new species of Pararhabdepyris Gorbatovsky (Hymenoptera, Bethylidae) from Central Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Vargas, Juan M; Azevedo, Celso O

    2016-01-01

    Three new species of Pararhabdepyris are described and illustrated: P. arabo sp. nov. (United Arabian Emirates and Yemen), P. wafrika sp. nov. (Central African Republic), P. ngangu sp. nov. (Central African Republic). The genus is recorded for the first time from the Saharo-Arabian region. A key for all species of the genus is presented. PMID:27395185

  14. African oil plays

    SciTech Connect

    Clifford, A.J. )

    1989-09-01

    The vast continent of Africa hosts over eight sedimentary basins, covering approximately half its total area. Of these basins, only 82% have entered a mature exploration phase, 9% have had little or no exploration at all. Since oil was first discovered in Africa during the mid-1950s, old play concepts continue to bear fruit, for example in Egypt and Nigeria, while new play concepts promise to become more important, such as in Algeria, Angola, Chad, Egypt, Gabon, and Sudan. The most exciting developments of recent years in African oil exploration are: (1) the Gamba/Dentale play, onshore Gabon; (2) the Pinda play, offshore Angola; (3) the Lucula/Toca play, offshore Cabinda; (4) the Metlaoui play, offshore Libya/Tunisia; (5) the mid-Cretaceous sand play, Chad/Sudan; and (6) the TAG-I/F6 play, onshore Algeria. Examples of these plays are illustrated along with some of the more traditional oil plays. Where are the future oil plays likely to develop No doubt, the Saharan basins of Algeria and Libya will feature strongly, also the presalt of Equatorial West Africa, the Central African Rift System and, more speculatively, offshore Ethiopia and Namibia, and onshore Madagascar, Mozambique, and Tanzania.

  15. Bioenergy and African transformation.

    PubMed

    Lynd, Lee R; Sow, Mariam; Chimphango, Annie Fa; Cortez, Luis Ab; Brito Cruz, Carlos H; Elmissiry, Mosad; Laser, Mark; Mayaki, Ibrahim A; Moraes, Marcia Afd; Nogueira, Luiz Ah; Wolfaardt, Gideon M; Woods, Jeremy; van Zyl, Willem H

    2015-01-01

    Among the world's continents, Africa has the highest incidence of food insecurity and poverty and the highest rates of population growth. Yet Africa also has the most arable land, the lowest crop yields, and by far the most plentiful land resources relative to energy demand. It is thus of interest to examine the potential of expanded modern bioenergy production in Africa. Here we consider bioenergy as an enabler for development, and provide an overview of modern bioenergy technologies with a comment on application in an Africa context. Experience with bioenergy in Africa offers evidence of social benefits and also some important lessons. In Brazil, social development, agricultural development and food security, and bioenergy development have been synergistic rather than antagonistic. Realizing similar success in African countries will require clear vision, good governance, and adaptation of technologies, knowledge, and business models to myriad local circumstances. Strategies for integrated production of food crops, livestock, and bioenergy are potentially attractive and offer an alternative to an agricultural model featuring specialized land use. If done thoughtfully, there is considerable evidence that food security and economic development in Africa can be addressed more effectively with modern bioenergy than without it. Modern bioenergy can be an agent of African transformation, with potential social benefits accruing to multiple sectors and extending well beyond energy supply per se. Potential negative impacts also cut across sectors. Thus, institutionally inclusive multi-sector legislative structures will be more effective at maximizing the social benefits of bioenergy compared to institutionally exclusive, single-sector structures. PMID:25709714

  16. Phylogenetic relationships among the Ibero-African cobitids (Cobitis, cobitidae) based on cytochrome b sequence data.

    PubMed

    Doadrio, Ignacio; Perdices, Anabel

    2005-11-01

    We estimated the phylogenetic relationships of all Ibero-African spined loaches of the genus Cobitis using the complete mitochondrial cytochrome b gene (1140bp). We analysed 93 individuals of seven cobitid species found in all the principal drainages of the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa. A molecular phylogeny was used to revise current systematics of the Ibero-African Cobitis species and to infer a biogeographical model for Cobitis in the Western Mediterranean area during the Cenozoic period. Phylogenetic analysis provided support for the monophyly of two mtDNA clades: Clade A or Italian Clade with the Italian species (C. bilineata, C. zanandreai), and Clade B or the Ibero-African Clade. The Ibero-African Clade included all species endemic for the Iberian Peninsula (C. vettonica, C. calderoni, and C. paludica) and North Africa (C. maroccana). The species C. paludica does not constitute a natural group, and could be divided into at least four monophyletic mtDNA lineages with moderate to high bootstrap values and posterior probability support. Phylogenetic relationships of the Ibero-African species were not resolved satisfactorily, but in all analyses C. calderoni from Northern Iberian Peninsula was basal. We have re-calibrated a molecular clock for the genus Cobitis (0.68% per million year by pairwise) using populations inhabiting both sides of the Gibraltar Strait. Application of this Cobitis mtDNA clock provides evidence that the Messinian salinity crisis played a primary role in the diversification of some Ibero-African cobitid species. The basal polytomies of the Ibero-African Clade might suggest that all mtDNA lineages diversified rapidly. PMID:16150615

  17. [Host plants of Aphis gossypii (Aphididae), vector of virus of Cucumis melo melon (Cucurbitaceae) in Costa Rica].

    PubMed

    Sánchez, M V; Agüero, R; Rivera, C

    2001-03-01

    Plant species associated with commercial melon crops and surrounding areas were examined to identity the natural host plants of Aphis gossypii Glover. The study was conducted in two farms located in different melon production areas and plant life zones of Costa Rica. Plant species diversity, percent coverage and distribution over time were recorded during one year. Differences between locations were observed. A total of 86 plant species (49 families) and 72 plant species (40 families) were identified associated to the crop in farms A and B, respectively. In both farms a total of 24 species plants (16 families) were colonized by A. gossypii and 16 (10 families) are new reports of host plant species for this aphid. The new reports are: Justicia comata, Tetramerium nervosum, Alternanthera pubiflora, Cassia massoni, C. reticulata, Cleome viscosa, C. spinosa, Croton argenteus, Caperonia palustris, Chamaesyce gyssopilopia, Phyllantus amarus, Sida decumbens, Ludwigia erecta, Passiflora foetida, Guazuma ulmifolia and Corchorus orinocensis. PMID:11795159

  18. Assimilation Differences among Africans in America.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dodoo, F. Nii-Amoo

    1997-01-01

    Census data (1990) indicate that male African immigrants earn more than their Caribbean-born counterparts or native-born African Americans, but controlling for relevant earnings-related endowments erases the African advantage and elevates Caribbean earnings above those of the other groups. Also, African (but not Caribbean) university degree…

  19. Successfully Educating Our African-American Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moncree-Moffett, Kareem

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this empirical study was to explore the lived experiences of African American retired female teachers who have prior experience with educating urban African American students in public schools. Also explored are the experiences of active African American female teachers of urban African American students and comparisons are…

  20. East African odontopygid millipedes 4: A restricted redefinition of the genus Rhamphidarpoides Kraus, 1960, a related new genus, five new species, and notes on solenomere function (Diplopoda; Spirostreptida; Odontopygidae).

    PubMed

    Frederiksen, Sara B; Enghoff, Henrik

    2015-01-01

    Based mainly on morphology of the solenomere, a restricted redefinition of the millipede genus Rhamphidarpoides Kraus, 1960, is given. R. aberdarei (Brolemann, 1920), R. aloysiisabaudiae (Silvestri, 1907), R. alticolus (Brolemann, 1920), R. austrosudanicus n.sp., (South Sudan), R. collinus n.sp., (Kenya), R. cyclopyge (Attems, 1935), R. filigerus (Attems,1938), R. kenyanus (Brolemann, 1920), R. kilimanjaronus (Attems, 1909) n. comb. ex Odontopyge, R. lobiferus (Attems, 1938), R. milobontei Pierrard, 1970, R. pectinatus n.sp., (Kenya), R. regina (Carl, 1909), and R. ruandensis Kraus, 1960, are referred to Rhamphidarpoides in the restricted sense. Raduliverpa n.gen. is described to accommodate R. serpentispina n.sp. (TYPE SPECIES; Tanzania, Kenya), R. mitis n.sp. (Tanzania). R. serrata (Kraus, 1960), n.comb. ex Rhamphidarpoides, and R. sicaria (Attems, 1935) n. comb. ex Prionopetalum. Rhamphidarpe aculeata Attems, 1938, Rhamphidarpe armata Attems, 1938, Rhamphidarpoides bidens Kraus, 1960, Rhamphidarpoides bidenticulatus Pierrard, 1970, and Odontopyge winspearei Silvestri, 1907, are excluded from Rhamphidarpoides and placed incertae sedis. PMID:25781801

  1. Negro, Black, Black African, African Caribbean, African American or what? Labelling African origin populations in the health arena in the 21st century.

    PubMed

    Agyemang, Charles; Bhopal, Raj; Bruijnzeels, Marc

    2005-12-01

    Broad terms such as Black, African, or Black African are entrenched in scientific writings although there is considerable diversity within African descent populations and such terms may be both offensive and inaccurate. This paper outlines the heterogeneity within African populations, and discusses the strengths and limitations of the term Black and related labels from epidemiological and public health perspectives in Europe and the USA. This paper calls for debate on appropriate terminologies for African descent populations and concludes with the proposals that (1) describing the population under consideration is of paramount importance (2) the word African origin or simply African is an appropriate and necessary prefix for an ethnic label, for example, African Caribbean or African Kenyan or African Surinamese (3) documents should define the ethnic labels (4) the label Black should be phased out except when used in political contexts. PMID:16286485

  2. The genomic substrate for adaptive radiation in African cichlid fish

    PubMed Central

    Malinsky, Milan; Keller, Irene; Fan, Shaohua; Simakov, Oleg; Ng, Alvin Y.; Lim, Zhi Wei; Bezault, Etienne; Turner-Maier, Jason; Johnson, Jeremy; Alcazar, Rosa; Noh, Hyun Ji; Russell, Pamela; Aken, Bronwen; Alföldi, Jessica; Amemiya, Chris; Azzouzi, Naoual; Baroiller, Jean-François; Barloy-Hubler, Frederique; Berlin, Aaron; Bloomquist, Ryan; Carleton, Karen L.; Conte, Matthew A.; D'Cotta, Helena; Eshel, Orly; Gaffney, Leslie; Galibert, Francis; Gante, Hugo F.; Gnerre, Sante; Greuter, Lucie; Guyon, Richard; Haddad, Natalie S.; Haerty, Wilfried; Harris, Rayna M.; Hofmann, Hans A.; Hourlier, Thibaut; Hulata, Gideon; Jaffe, David B.; Lara, Marcia; Lee, Alison P.; MacCallum, Iain; Mwaiko, Salome; Nikaido, Masato; Nishihara, Hidenori; Ozouf-Costaz, Catherine; Penman, David J.; Przybylski, Dariusz; Rakotomanga, Michaelle; Renn, Suzy C. P.; Ribeiro, Filipe J.; Ron, Micha; Salzburger, Walter; Sanchez-Pulido, Luis; Santos, M. Emilia; Searle, Steve; Sharpe, Ted; Swofford, Ross; Tan, Frederick J.; Williams, Louise; Young, Sarah; Yin, Shuangye; Okada, Norihiro; Kocher, Thomas D.; Miska, Eric A.; Lander, Eric S.; Venkatesh, Byrappa; Fernald, Russell D.; Meyer, Axel; Ponting, Chris P.; Streelman, J. Todd; Lindblad-Toh, Kerstin; Seehausen, Ole; Di Palma, Federica

    2015-01-01

    Cichlid fishes are famous for large, diverse and replicated adaptive radiations in the Great Lakes of East Africa. To understand the molecular mechanisms underlying cichlid phenotypic diversity, we sequenced the genomes and transcriptomes of five lineages of African cichlids: the Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), an ancestral lineage with low diversity; and four members of the East African lineage: Neolamprologus brichardi/pulcher (older radiation, Lake Tanganyika), Metriaclima zebra (recent radiation, Lake Malawi), Pundamilia nyererei (very recent radiation, Lake Victoria), and Astatotilapia burtoni (riverine species around Lake Tanganyika). We found an excess of gene duplications in the East African lineage compared to tilapia and other teleosts, an abundance of non-coding element divergence, accelerated coding sequence evolution, expression divergence associated with transposable element insertions, and regulation by novel microRNAs. In addition, we analysed sequence data from sixty individuals representing six closely related species from Lake Victoria, and show genome-wide diversifying selection on coding and regulatory variants, some of which were recruited from ancient polymorphisms. We conclude that a number of molecular mechanisms shaped East African cichlid genomes, and that amassing of standing variation during periods of relaxed purifying selection may have been important in facilitating subsequent evolutionary diversification. PMID:25186727

  3. Germination and root elongation bioassays in six different plant species for testing Ni contamination in soil.

    PubMed

    Visioli, Giovanna; Conti, Federica D; Gardi, Ciro; Menta, Cristina

    2014-04-01

    In vitro short-term chronic phytotoxicity germination and root elongation test were applied to test the effects of nickel (Ni) in seed germination and root elongation in six plants species: Cucumis sativus (Cucurbitaceae), Lepidium sativum and Brassica nigra (Brassicaceae), Trifolium alexandrinum and Medicago sativa (Fabaceae), Phacelia tanacetifolia (Boraginaceae). A naturally Ni rich soil was used to compare the results obtained. Unlike root elongation, germination was not affected by Ni in any of the six species tested. EC50 values, calculated on the root elongation, showed that Ni toxicity decreases in the following order: P. tanacetifolia > B. nigra > C. sativus > L. sativum > M. sativa > T. alexandrinum. The test conducted using soil elutriate revealed a significantly lower effect in both seed germination and root elongation when compared to the results obtained using untreated soil. Conversely, the test performed on soil confirmed the high sensitivity of C. sativus, P. tanacetifolia and L. sativum to Ni. PMID:24288040

  4. First Miocene rodent from Lebanon provides the 'missing link' between Asian and African gundis (Rodentia: Ctenodactylidae)

    PubMed Central

    López-Antoñanzas, Raquel; Knoll, Fabien; Maksoud, Sibelle; Azar, Dany

    2015-01-01

    Ctenodactylinae (gundis) is a clade of rodents that experienced, in Miocene time, their greatest diversification and widest distribution. They expanded from the Far East, their area of origin, to Africa, which they entered from what would become the Arabian Peninsula. Questions concerning the origin of African Ctenodactylinae persist essentially because of a poor fossil record from the Miocene of Afro-Arabia. However, recent excavations in the Late Miocene of Lebanon have yielded a key taxon for our understanding of these issues. Proafricanomys libanensis nov. gen. nov. sp. shares a variety of dental characters with both the most primitive and derived members of the subfamily. A cladistic analysis demonstrates that this species is the sister taxon to a clade encompassing all but one of the African ctenodactylines, plus a southern European species of obvious African extraction. As such, Proafricanomys provides the 'missing link' between the Asian and African gundis. PMID:26250050

  5. African swine fever.

    PubMed

    Penrith, Mary-Louise

    2009-03-01

    African swine fever (ASF) is a devastating haemorrhagic fever of pigs that causes up to 100% mortality, for which there is no vaccine. It is caused by a unique DNA virus that is maintained in an ancient cycle between warthogs and argasid ticks, making it the only known DNA arbovirus. ASF has a high potential for transboundary spread, and has twice been transported from Africa to other continents--Europe and subsequently the Caribbean and Brazil (1957, 1959) and the Caucasus (2007). It is also a devastating constraint for pig production in Africa. Research at Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute has made and is making important contributions to knowledge of this disease, focusing on the cycle in warthogs and tampans and transmission from that cycle to domestic pigs, resistance to its effects in domestic pigs, and the molecular genetic characterisation and epidemiology of the virus. PMID:19967933

  6. The African Millennium Villages

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez, Pedro; Palm, Cheryl; Sachs, Jeffrey; Denning, Glenn; Flor, Rafael; Harawa, Rebbie; Jama, Bashir; Kiflemariam, Tsegazeab; Konecky, Bronwen; Kozar, Raffaela; Lelerai, Eliud; Malik, Alia; Modi, Vijay; Mutuo, Patrick; Niang, Amadou; Okoth, Herine; Place, Frank; Sachs, Sonia Ehrlich; Said, Amir; Siriri, David; Teklehaimanot, Awash; Wang, Karen; Wangila, Justine; Zamba, Colleen

    2007-01-01

    We describe the concept, strategy, and initial results of the Millennium Villages Project and implications regarding sustainability and scalability. Our underlying hypothesis is that the interacting crises of agriculture, health, and infrastructure in rural Africa can be overcome through targeted public-sector investments to raise rural productivity and, thereby, to increased private-sector saving and investments. This is carried out by empowering impoverished communities with science-based interventions. Seventy-eight Millennium Villages have been initiated in 12 sites in 10 African countries, each representing a major agroecological zone. In early results, the research villages in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Malawi have reduced malaria prevalence, met caloric requirements, generated crop surpluses, enabled school feeding programs, and provided cash earnings for farm families. PMID:17942701

  7. Larger genetic differences within africans than between Africans and Eurasians.

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Ning; Chen, Feng-Chi; Ota, Satoshi; Jorde, Lynn B; Pamilo, Pekka; Patthy, Laszlo; Ramsay, Michele; Jenkins, Trefor; Shyue, Song-Kun; Li, Wen-Hsiung

    2002-01-01

    The worldwide pattern of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) variation is of great interest to human geneticists, population geneticists, and evolutionists, but remains incompletely understood. We studied the pattern in noncoding regions, because they are less affected by natural selection than are coding regions. Thus, it can reflect better the history of human evolution and can serve as a baseline for understanding the maintenance of SNPs in human populations. We sequenced 50 noncoding DNA segments each approximately 500 bp long in 10 Africans, 10 Europeans, and 10 Asians. An analysis of the data suggests that the sampling scheme is adequate for our purpose. The average nucleotide diversity (pi) for the 50 segments is only 0.061% +/- 0.010% among Asians and 0.064% +/- 0.011% among Europeans but almost twice as high (0.115% +/- 0.016%) among Africans. The African diversity estimate is even higher than that between Africans and Eurasians (0.096% +/- 0.012%). From available data for noncoding autosomal regions (total length = 47,038 bp) and X-linked regions (47,421 bp), we estimated the pi-values for autosomal regions to be 0.105, 0.070, 0.069, and 0.097% for Africans, Asians, Europeans, and between Africans and Eurasians, and the corresponding values for X-linked regions to be 0.088, 0.042, 0.053, and 0.082%. Thus, Africans differ from one another slightly more than from Eurasians, and the genetic diversity in Eurasians is largely a subset of that in Africans, supporting the out of Africa model of human evolution. Clearly, one must specify the geographic origins of the individuals sampled when studying pi or SNP density. PMID:12019240

  8. Syntenic relationships between cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) and melon (C. melo L.) chromosomes as revealed by comparative genetic mapping

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cucumber and melon are two economically important vegetable species. Both species have an Asian origin that diverged approximately nine million years ago. Cucumber is believed to have evolved from melon, where twelve melon chromosomes are thought to have undergone chromosome fusion to result in the ...

  9. [West African childbirth traditions].

    PubMed

    Hallgren, R

    1983-11-01

    Religious and medical practices are steeped in the traditions of West African culture vis-a-vis childbirth. It is customary for delivery to occur with the woman squatting on the ground surrounded by sisters and female relatives, some of whom function as midwives. Midwives get paid only if delivery is successful. A stool is also often used in childbirth. The name given to a child in the Yoruba tribe in Nigeria has to refer to the circumstances of the individual's birth. The contact with the earth (as in the squatting position) has religious overtones--it indicates the fecundity of the earth, and the mother's contact with it. Infertility is considered the greatest tragedy in traditional African society. In Senegal, a childless woman pays a fertile one a certain sum in return for bearing her a child who would be raised as her own (this tradition is not unlike surrogate motherhood in Western countries). Men are never present at birth; however, in urban settings this practice is changing. The burial of the placenta and umbilical cord is thought to restore the woman's fertility and help heal her womb. This practice was even recorded in 19th century Sweden harkening back to heathen times. In Ghana, an infertile woman urinates on the ground where the placenta is buried in the belief that her fertility will be restored. The birth of twins is regarded as a great blessing, and as a sign of fertility; however, the inability of the mother to breast-feed both twins may result in the death of the weaker child. The harmony of nature, animals, and human beings is paramount in traditional West Africa religion and life, and undoubtedly Western culture could learn from some of these beliefs. PMID:6558064

  10. Character displacement of song and morphology in African tinkerbirds

    PubMed Central

    Kirschel, Alexander N. G.; Blumstein, Daniel T.; Smith, Thomas B.

    2009-01-01

    Divergence in acoustic signals between populations of animals can lead to species recognition failure, reproductive isolation, and speciation. Character displacement may facilitate coexistence of species in natural communities, yet evidence for character displacement in acoustic signals is scant. Here, we find evidence of character displacement in song as well as body size and bill size of 2 related African tinkerbirds. Playback experiments indicate that related species' songs are perceived differently in sympatry than in allopatry. We suggest character displacement occurs in phenotypic traits facilitating species recognition, which has important implications for understanding the processes that lead to speciation and diversification. Because many of the sites where the 2 species coexist are areas where pristine rainforest has been degraded, results also suggest that anthropogenic pressures resulting from deforestation may be a contributing cause of character displacement in these species. PMID:19420223

  11. Behavioral studies of learning in the Africanized honey bee (Apis mellifera L.).

    PubMed

    Abramson, Charles I; Aquino, Italo S

    2002-01-01

    Experiments on basic classical conditioning phenomena in adult and young Africanized honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) are described. Phenomena include conditioning to various stimuli, extinction (both unpaired and CS only), conditioned inhibition, color and odor discrimination. In addition to work on basic phenomena, experiments on practical applications of conditioning methodology are illustrated with studies demonstrating the effects of insecticides on learning and the reaction of bees to consumer products. Electron microscope photos are presented of Africanized workers, drones, and queen bees. Possible sub-species differences between Africanized and European bees are discussed. PMID:12097861

  12. THE AFRICAN CLUSTER BUG, AGONOSCELIS PUBERULA STAL (HETEROPTERA: PENTATOMIDAE), ESTABLISHED IN THE NEW WORLD

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An African species of Pentatomidae, Agonoscelis puberula Stal, is reported for the first time from Mexico, the southern United States, and the Islands of Jamaica and Hispaniola, where it has now established. The oldest western hemisphere record dates from 1985. This species has gone unrecognized p...

  13. Early African Hominids: Pedagogic Patterns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newman, James L.

    1984-01-01

    By studying early African hominids, students can learn about the interactive testing and creative aspects of scientific thinking and sharpen their geographical skills. It is impossible to study this topic without giving prominence to space and time. (RM)

  14. African fossil tali: further multivariate morphometric studies.

    PubMed

    Lisowski, F P; Albrecht, G H

    1976-07-01

    Analysis of measurements from the tali of 21 individual fossil primates from Africa shows that the specimens fall into five clearly defined groups. Accordingly, these specimens have been included as groups along with extant species in a subsequent canonical analysis thus allowing the fossils to play their part in the determination of the canonical separations. The results of this procedure show that the five fossil groups lie in a part of the canonical space not occupied by any extant African primate. Their positions are between the envelope of Asiatic apes (Hylobates and Pongo) and the envelope of African forms near the edge which contains Pan and Papio. One fossil group is so similar to Hylobates that its talus may have functioned in locomotion in a parallel manner. Others lie near to Pongo in directions proceeding towards Pan and Papio and it is possible that this similarity may indicate remnants of morphological adaptation for climbing in these fossils. At the same time, however, individual specimens are closer to one or another of the extant groups and this considerable spread suggests that the locomotor adaptations as evidenced by talar morphology, of the primate fauna in Africa, may have been very different from those of the present day. This would not the inconsistent with the different habitats, floras and non-primate faunas that may have characterized the East African scene at these earlier times. Particular fossils from Olduvai and Kromdraai that are supposed to be australopithecine and therefore bipeds, are confirmed (Oxnard, '72; Lisowski et al., '74) as being totally different from man in their talar morphology and essentially rather similar to the majority of the other fossil tali examined. PMID:961834

  15. A new species of Tinodes (Trichoptera: Psychomyiidae) from Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Melnitsky, Stanislav I; Ivanov, Vladimir D

    2016-01-01

    The genus Tinodes (Psychomyiidae) has a wide distribution in the Eastern Hemisphere with the richest species assemblages in the Oriental and southern parts of the Western Palearctic regions. In comparison with the species assemblages in those regions, diversity of the African species of this genus is relatively poor. A brief review of the 10 then-known Afrotropical species belonging to the genus Tinodes was published by Johanson & Oláh (2007) together with descriptions of 14 new species. Some of these new species came from the Eastern African Arc of crystalline mountains, although 5 species have been found in Madagascar and the Comoros where no species of the genus Tinodes have been known previously. These new findings suggest continuing poor knowledge of the Afrotropical faunas where many species escaped descriptions until the beginning of the XXI century. PMID:27395724

  16. Multigene phylogenetics reveals temporal diversification of major African malaria vectors.

    PubMed

    Kamali, Maryam; Marek, Paul E; Peery, Ashley; Antonio-Nkondjio, Christophe; Ndo, Cyrille; Tu, Zhijian; Simard, Frederic; Sharakhov, Igor V

    2014-01-01

    The major vectors of malaria in sub-Saharan Africa belong to subgenus Cellia. Yet, phylogenetic relationships and temporal diversification among African mosquito species have not been unambiguously determined. Knowledge about vector evolutionary history is crucial for correct interpretation of genetic changes identified through comparative genomics analyses. In this study, we estimated a molecular phylogeny using 49 gene sequences for the African malaria vectors An. gambiae, An. funestus, An. nili, the Asian malaria mosquito An. stephensi, and the outgroup species Culex quinquefasciatus and Aedes aegypti. To infer the phylogeny, we identified orthologous sequences uniformly distributed approximately every 5 Mb in the five chromosomal arms. The sequences were aligned and the phylogenetic trees were inferred using maximum likelihood and neighbor-joining methods. Bayesian molecular dating using a relaxed log normal model was used to infer divergence times. Trees from individual genes agreed with each other, placing An. nili as a basal clade that diversified from the studied malaria mosquito species 47.6 million years ago (mya). Other African malaria vectors originated more recently, and independently acquired traits related to vectorial capacity. The lineage leading to An. gambiae diverged 30.4 mya, while the African vector An. funestus and the Asian vector An. stephensi were the most closely related sister taxa that split 20.8 mya. These results were supported by consistently high bootstrap values in concatenated phylogenetic trees generated individually for each chromosomal arm. Genome-wide multigene phylogenetic analysis is a useful approach for discerning historic relationships among malaria vectors, providing a framework for the correct interpretation of genomic changes across species, and comprehending the evolutionary origins of this ubiquitous and deadly insect-borne disease. PMID:24705448

  17. 3-Methylthiopropionic Acid Ethyl Ester, Isolated from Katsura-uri (Japanese pickling melon, Cucumis melo var. conomon), Enhanced Differentiation in Human Colon Cancer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Nakamura, Yasushi; Nakayama, Yuko; Ando, Hitomi; Tanaka, Atsuo; Matsuo, Tomoaki; Okamoto, Shigehisa; Upham, Brad L.; Chang, Chia-Cheng; Trosko, James E.; Park, Eun Young; Sato, Kenji

    2008-01-01

    The fully ripened fruit of Katsura-uri Japanese pickling melon (Cucumis melo var. conomon) has rarely been used for food because the midripened fruit is utilized for making pickles, but the fully ripened fruit is no longer valuable for pickles due to the fruit body being too soft. We have considered the utilization of the fully ripened Katsura-uri fruit that may be used for nonpickling products, particularly if the fully ripened fruit demonstrated health benefits such as anticarcinogenic properties. The phytochemical extract from the fully ripened fruit of Katsura-uri Japanese pickling melon was purified via a bioassay-guided fractionation scheme, which was based on the induction of differentiation in a RCM-1 human colon cancer cell line. On the criteria of two differentiation markers (duct formation and alkaline phosphatase activity), the most potent fraction contained a compound identified as 3-methylthiopropionic acid ethyl ester, based on GC retention time, EI-MS, 1H NMR, and 13C NMR spectra. Previously, the role of 3-methylthiopropionic acid ethyl ester was considered as an odor producing compound in many fruits, but this study indicates potential medical benefits of this compound. PMID:18426216

  18. Rapid identification of fruit length loci in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) using next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based QTL analysis.

    PubMed

    Wei, Qing-Zhen; Fu, Wen-Yuan; Wang, Yun-Zhu; Qin, Xiao-Dong; Wang, Jing; Li, Ji; Lou, Qun-Feng; Chen, Jin-Feng

    2016-01-01

    The cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) exhibits extensive variations in fruit size and shape. Fruit length is an important agronomic and domesticated trait controlled by quantitative trait loci (QTLs). Nonetheless, the underlying molecular and genetic mechanisms that determine cucumber fruit length remain unclear. QTL-seq is an efficient strategy for QTL identification that takes advantage of bulked-segregant analysis (BSA) and next-generation sequencing (NGS). In the present study, we conducted QTL mapping and QTL-seq of cucumber fruit length. QTL mapping identified 8 QTLs for immature and mature fruit length. A major-effect QTL fl3.2, which explained a maximum of 38.87% of the phenotypic variation, was detected. A genome-wide comparison of SNP profiles between two DNA bulks identified 6 QTLs for ovary length. QTLs ovl3.1 and ovl3.2 both had major effects on ovary length with a △ (SNP-index) of 0.80 (P < 0.01) and 0.74 (P < 0.01), respectively. Quantitative RT-PCR of fruit size-related homologous genes localized in the consensus QTL FL3.2 was conducted. Four candidate genes exhibited increased expression levels in long fruit genotypes. Our results demonstrated the power of the QTL-seq method in rapid QTL detection and provided reliable QTL regions for fine mapping of fruit length-related loci and for identifying candidate genes. PMID:27271557

  19. Induction of 33-kD and 60-kD peroxidases during ethylene-induced senescence of cucumber cotyledons. [Cucumis sativus L

    SciTech Connect

    Abeles, F.B.; Dunn, L.J.; Morgens, P.; Callahan, A.; Dinterman, R.E.; Schmidt, J. Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases, Frederick, MD )

    1988-07-01

    Ethylene enhanced the senescence of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. cv Poinsett 76) cotyledons. The effect of 10 microliters per liter ethylene was inhibited by 1 millimolar silver thiosulfate, an inhibitor of ethylene action. An increase in proteins with molecular weights of 33 to 30 kilodaltons and lower molecular weights (25, 23, 20, 16, 12 and 10 kilodaltons) were observed in sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis gels after ethylene enhanced senescence. The measurement of DNase and RNase activity in gels indicated that these new proteins were not nucleases. Two proteins from ethylene-treated cotyledons were purified on the basis of their association with a red chromaphore and subsequently were identified as peroxidases. The molecular weights and isoelectric points (pI) of two of these peroxidases were 33 kilodaltons (cationic, pI = 8.9) and 60 kilodaltons (anionic, pI = 4.0). The observation that ({sup 35}S)Na{sub 2}SO{sub 4} was incorporated into these proteins during ethylene-enhanced senescence suggests that these peroxidases represent newly synthesized proteins. Antibodies to the 33-kilodalton peroxidase precipitated two in vitro translation products from RNA isolated from ethylene-treated but not from control cucumber seedlings. This indicates that the increase in 33-kilodalton peroxidase activity represents de novo protein synthesis. Both forms of peroxidase degraded chlorophyll in vitro, which is consistent with the hypothesis that peroxidases have catabolic or scavenging functions in senescent tissues.

  20. Acclimation to high CO/sub 2/ in monoecious cucumbers. II. Carbon exchange rates, enzyme activities, and starch and nutrient concentrations. [Cucumis sativus L

    SciTech Connect

    Peet, M.M.; Huber, S.C.; Patterson, D.T.

    1986-01-01

    Carbon exchange capacity of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) germinated and grown in controlled environment chambers at 1000 microliters per liter CO/sub 2/ decreased from the vegetative growth stage to the fruiting stage, during which time capacity of plants grown at 350 microliters per liter increased. Carbon exchange rates (CERs) measured under growth conditions during the fruiting period were, in fact, lower in plants grown at 1000 microliters per liter CO/sub 2/ than those grown at 350. Progressive decreases in CERs in 1000 microliters per liter plants were associated with decreasing stomatal conductances and activities of ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase and carbonic anhydrase. Leaf starch concentrations were higher in 1000 microliters per liter CO/sub 2/ grown-plants than in 350 microliters per liter grown plants but calcium and nitrogen concentrations were lower, the greatest difference occurring at flowering. Sucrose synthase and sucrose-P-synthase activities were similar in 1000 microliters per liter compared to 350 microliters per liter plants during vegetative growth and flowering but higher in 350 microliters per liter plants at fruiting. The decreased carbon exchange rates observed in this cultivar at 1000 microliters per liter CO/sub 2/ could explain the lack of any yield increase when compared with plants grown at 350 microliters per liter.

  1. Rapid identification of fruit length loci in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) using next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based QTL analysis

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Qing-zhen; Fu, Wen-yuan; Wang, Yun-zhu; Qin, Xiao-dong; Wang, Jing; Li, Ji; Lou, Qun-feng; Chen, Jin-feng

    2016-01-01

    The cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) exhibits extensive variations in fruit size and shape. Fruit length is an important agronomic and domesticated trait controlled by quantitative trait loci (QTLs). Nonetheless, the underlying molecular and genetic mechanisms that determine cucumber fruit length remain unclear. QTL-seq is an efficient strategy for QTL identification that takes advantage of bulked-segregant analysis (BSA) and next-generation sequencing (NGS). In the present study, we conducted QTL mapping and QTL-seq of cucumber fruit length. QTL mapping identified 8 QTLs for immature and mature fruit length. A major-effect QTL fl3.2, which explained a maximum of 38.87% of the phenotypic variation, was detected. A genome-wide comparison of SNP profiles between two DNA bulks identified 6 QTLs for ovary length. QTLs ovl3.1 and ovl3.2 both had major effects on ovary length with a △ (SNP-index) of 0.80 (P < 0.01) and 0.74 (P < 0.01), respectively. Quantitative RT-PCR of fruit size-related homologous genes localized in the consensus QTL FL3.2 was conducted. Four candidate genes exhibited increased expression levels in long fruit genotypes. Our results demonstrated the power of the QTL-seq method in rapid QTL detection and provided reliable QTL regions for fine mapping of fruit length-related loci and for identifying candidate genes. PMID:27271557

  2. Synchrotron micro-XRF and micro-XANES confirmation of the uptake and translocation of TiO₂ nanoparticles in cucumber (Cucumis sativus) plants.

    PubMed

    Servin, Alia D; Castillo-Michel, Hiram; Hernandez-Viezcas, Jose A; Diaz, Baltazar Corral; Peralta-Videa, Jose R; Gardea-Torresdey, Jorge L

    2012-07-17

    Advances in nanotechnology have raised concerns about possible effects of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) in the environment, especially in terrestrial plants. In this research, the impacts of TiO(2) nanoparticles (NPs) were evaluated in hydroponically grown cucumber (Cucumis sativus) plants. Seven day old seedlings were treated with TiO(2) NPs at concentrations varying from 0 to 4000 mg L(-1). At harvest, the size of roots and shoots were measured. In addition, micro X- ray fluorescence (micro-XRF) and micro X-ray absorption spectroscopy (micro-XAS), respectively, were used to track the presence and chemical speciation of Ti within plant tissues. Results showed that at all concentrations, TiO(2) significantly increased root length (average >300%). By using micro-XRF it was found that Ti was transported from the roots to the leaf trichomes, suggesting that trichomes are possible sink or excretory system for the Ti. The micro-XANES spectra showed that the absorbed Ti was present as TiO(2) within the cucumber tissues, demonstrating that the TiO(2) NPs were not biotransformed. PMID:22715806

  3. Cucumis sativus L. WAX2 Plays a Pivotal Role in Wax Biosynthesis, Influencing Pollen Fertility and Plant Biotic and Abiotic Stress Responses.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wenjiao; Liu, Xingwang; Gai, Xinshuang; Ren, Jiaojiao; Liu, Xiaofeng; Cai, Yanling; Wang, Qian; Ren, Huazhong

    2015-07-01

    Cuticular waxes play an important part in protecting plant aerial organs from biotic and abiotic stresses. In previous studies, the biosynthetic pathway of cuticular waxes and relative functional genes has been researched and understood; however, little is known in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.). In this study, we cloned and characterized an AtWAX2 homolog, CsWAX2, in cucumber and found that it is highly expressed in the epidermis, where waxes are synthesized, while subcellular localization showed that CsWAX2 protein is localized to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). The transcriptional expression of CsWAX2 was found to be induced by low temperature, drought, salt stress and ABA, while the ectopic expression of CsWAX2 in an Arabidopsis wax2 mutant could partially complement the glossy stem phenotype. Abnormal expression of CsWAX2 in transgenic cucumbers specifically affected both very long chain (VLC) alkanes and cutin biosynthesis. Furthermore, transgenic cucumber plants of CsWAX2 showed significant changes in pollen viability and fruit resistance to water loss and pathogens compared with the wild type. Collectively, these results indicated that CsWAX2 plays a pivotal role in wax biosynthesis, influencing pollen fertility and the plant's response to biotic and abiotic stresses. PMID:26023108

  4. Chiba Tendril-Less locus determines tendril organ identity in melon (Cucumis melo L.) and potentially encodes a tendril-specific TCP homolog.

    PubMed

    Mizuno, Shinji; Sonoda, Masatoshi; Tamura, Yayoi; Nishino, Eisho; Suzuki, Hideyuki; Sato, Takahide; Oizumi, Toshikatsu

    2015-11-01

    Tendrils are filamentous plant organs that coil on contact with an object, thereby providing mechanical support for climbing to reach more sunlight. Plant tendrils are considered to be modified structure of leaves, stems, or inflorescence, but the origin of cucurbit tendrils is still argued because of the complexity in the axillary organ patterning. We carried out morphological and genetic analyses of the Chiba Tendril-Less (ctl) melon (Cucumis melo) mutant, and found strong evidence that the melon tendril is a modified organ derived from a stem-leaf complex of a lateral shoot. Heterozygous (CTL/ctl) plants showed traits intermediate between tendril and shoot, and ontogenies of wild-type tendrils and mutant modified shoots coincided. We identified the CTL locus in a 200-kb region in melon linkage group IX. A single base deletion in a melon TCP transcription factor gene (CmTCP1) was detected in the mutant ctl sequence, and the expression of CmTCP1 was specifically high in wild-type tendrils. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated the novelty of the CmTCP1 protein and the unique molecular evolution of its orthologs in the Cucurbitaceae. Our results move us closer to answering the long-standing question of which organ was modified to become the cucurbit tendril, and suggest a novel function of the TCP transcription factor in plant development. PMID:26275436

  5. Identification and molecular characterization of the cDNA encoding Cucumis melo allergen, Cuc m 3, a plant pathogenesis-related protein

    PubMed Central

    Sankian, Mojtaba; Hajavi, Jafar; Moghadam, Malihe; Varasteh, Abdol-Reza

    2014-01-01

    Background: Melon (Cucumis melo) allergy is one of the most common food allergies, characterized by oral allergy syndrome. To date, two allergen molecules, Cuc m 1 and Cuc m 2, have been fully characterized in melon pulp, but there are few reports about the molecular characteristics of Cuc m 3. Methods: The Cuc m 3 cDNA has been characterized by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE), which revealed a 456 base-pair (bp) fragment encoding a 151-amino acid polypeptide with a predicted molecular mass of 16.97 kDa, and identified 79 and 178 bp untranslated sequences at the 5′ and 3´ ends, respectively. Results: In silico analysis showed strong similarities between Cuc m 3 and other plant pathogen-related protein 1s from cucumber, grape, bell pepper, and tomato. Conclusion: Here we report the identification and characterization of the Cuc m 3 cDNA, which will be utilized for further analyses of structural and allergenic features of this allergen. PMID:26989726

  6. Changes of alternative oxidase activity, capacity and protein content in leaves of Cucumis sativus wild-type and MSC16 mutant grown under different light intensities.

    PubMed

    Florez-Sarasa, Igor; Ostaszewska, Monika; Galle, Alexander; Flexas, Jaume; Rychter, Anna M; Ribas-Carbo, Miquel

    2009-12-01

    In vitro studies demonstrated that alternative oxidase (AOX) is biochemically regulated by a sulfhydryl-disulfide system, interaction with alpha-ketoacids, ubiquinone pool redox state and protein content among others. However, there is still scarce information about the in vivo regulation of the AOX. Cucumis sativus wild-type (WT) and MSC16 mutant plants were grown under two different light intensities and were used to analyze the relationship between the amount of leaf AOX protein and its in vivo capacity and activity at night and day periods. WT and MSC16 plants presented lower total respiration (V(t)), cytochrome oxidase pathway (COP) activity (v(cyt)) and alternative oxidase pathway (AOP) activity (v(alt)) when grown at low light (LL), although growth light intensity did not change the amount of cytochrome oxidase (COX) nor AOX protein. Changes of v(cyt) related to growing light conditions suggested a substrate availability and energy demand control. On the other hand, the total amount of AOX protein present in the tissue does not play a role in the regulation neither of the capacity nor of the activity of the AOP in vivo. Soluble carbohydrates were directly related to the activity of the AOP. However, although differences in soluble sugar contents mostly regulate the capacity of the AOP at different growth light intensities, additional regulatory mechanisms are necessary to fully explain the observed results. PMID:19493308

  7. 3-Methylthiopropionic acid ethyl ester, isolated from Katsura-uri (Japanese pickling melon, Cucumis melo var. conomon), enhanced differentiation in human colon cancer cells.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Yasushi; Nakayama, Yuko; Ando, Hitomi; Tanaka, Atsuo; Matsuo, Tomoaki; Okamoto, Shigehisa; Upham, Brad L; Chang, Chia-Cheng; Trosko, James E; Park, Eun Young; Sato, Kenji

    2008-05-14

    The fully ripened fruit of Katsura-uri Japanese pickling melon ( Cucumis melo var. conomon) has rarely been used for food because the midripened fruit is utilized for making pickles, but the fully ripened fruit is no longer valuable for pickles due to the fruit body being too soft. We have considered the utilization of the fully ripened Katsura-uri fruit that may be used for nonpickling products, particularly if the fully ripened fruit demonstrated health benefits such as anticarcinogenic properties. The phytochemical extract from the fully ripened fruit of Katsura-uri Japanese pickling melon was purified via a bioassay-guided fractionation scheme, which was based on the induction of differentiation in a RCM-1 human colon cancer cell line. On the criteria of two differentiation markers (duct formation and alkaline phosphatase activity), the most potent fraction contained a compound identified as 3-methylthiopropionic acid ethyl ester, based on GC retention time, EI-MS, (1)H NMR, and (13)C NMR spectra. Previously, the role of 3-methylthiopropionic acid ethyl ester was considered as an odor producing compound in many fruits, but this study indicates potential medical benefits of this compound. PMID:18426216

  8. Antimutagenic; differentiation-inducing; and antioxidative effects of fragrant ingredients in Katsura-uri (Japanese pickling melon; Cucumis melo var. conomon).

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Yasushi; Watanabe, Shinpei; Kageyama, Minami; Shirota, Keiko; Shirota, Koji; Amano, Hisashi; Kashimoto, Tadahiro; Matsuo, Tomoaki; Okamoto, Shigehisa; Park, Eun Young; Sato, Kenji

    2010-12-21

    Six fragrant ingredients were identified in fully-ripened Katsura-uri (Japanese pickling melon; Cucumis melo var. conomon). Four of them were sulfur-containing compounds [methylthioacetic acid ethyl ester (MTAE), acetic acid 2-methylthio ethyl ester (AMTE), 3-methylthiopropionic acid ethyl ester (MTPE), and acetic acid 3-methylthio propyl ester (AMTP)]; and the others were benzyl acetate and eugenol. The newly identified MTAE and AMTP possessed antimutagenic activity as determined by their ability to inhibit the UV-induced mutation in repair-proficient E. coli B/r WP2. MTAE and MTPE (esters with thiocarbonic acid and alkyl alcohol) induced the differentiation of human colon cancer cells (RCM-1 cells), but AMTE and AMTP (esters with carbonic acid and thioalkyl alcohol) did not. A specific thioester motif containing a thiocarbonic acid and alkyl alcohol correlated with these compounds ability to induce differentiation. AMTE, MTPE, AMTP, and eugenol had higher oxygen radical absorbing capacity than the antioxidative vitamin, ascorbic acid. The quantity of MTPE, AMTP and eugenol increased 49-fold, >1175-fold and 11-fold, respectively, in the fully-ripened fruit as compared to the mid-ripened fruit. PMID:20801232

  9. The African Pediatric Fellowship Program: Training in Africa for Africans.

    PubMed

    Wilmshurst, Jo M; Morrow, Brenda; du Preez, Avril; Githanga, David; Kennedy, Neil; Zar, Heather J

    2016-01-01

    Africa has a significant burden of childhood disease, with relatively few skilled health care professionals. The African Paediatric Fellowship Programme was developed by the Department of Pediatrics and Child Health at the University of Cape Town to provide relevant training for African child health professionals, by Africans, within Africa. Trainees identified by partner academic institutions spend 6 months to 2 years training in the Department of Pediatrics and allied disciplines. They then return to their home institution to build practice, training, research, and advocacy. From 2008 to 2015, 73 physicians have completed or are completing training in general pediatrics or a pediatric subspecialty. At 1 year posttraining, 98% to 100% are practicing back in their home institution. The impact of the returning fellows is evident from their practice interventions, research collaborations, and positions as stakeholders who can change health care policies. Thirty-three centers in 13 African countries are partners with the program, and the program template is now followed by other partner sites in Africa. Increasing and retaining the skills pool of African child health specialists is building a network of motivated, highly skilled clinicians who are equipped to advance child health in Africa. PMID:26659458

  10. East African Rift

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    Places where the earth's crust has formed deep fissures and the plates have begun to move apart develop rift structures in which elongate blocks have subsided relative to the blocks on either side. The East African Rift is a world-famous example of such rifting. It is characterized by 1) topographic deep valleys in the rift zone, 2) sheer escarpments along the faulted walls of the rift zone, 3) a chain of lakes within the rift, most of the lakes highly saline due to evaporation in the hot temperatures characteristic of climates near the equator, 4) voluminous amounts of volcanic rocks that have flowed from faults along the sides of the rift, and 5) volcanic cones where magma flow was most intense. This example in Kenya displays most of these features near Lake Begoria.

    The image was acquired December 18, 2002, covers an area of 40.5 x 32 km, and is located at 0.1 degrees north latitude, 36.1 degrees east longitude.

    The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

  11. An African ethic for nursing?

    PubMed

    Haegert, S

    2000-11-01

    This article derives from a doctoral thesis in which a particular discourse was used as a 'paradigm case'. From this discourse an ethic set within a South African culture arose. Using many cultural 'voices' to aid the understanding of this narrative, the ethic shows that one can build on both a 'justice' and a 'care' ethic. With further development based on African culture one can take the ethic of care deeper and reveal 'layers of understanding'. Care, together with compassion, forms the foundation of morality. Nursing ethics has followed particular western moral philosophers. Often nursing ethics has been taught along the lines of Kohlberg's theory of morality, with its emphasis on rules, rights, duties and general obligations. These principles were universalistic, masculine and noncontextual. However, there is a new ethical movement among Thomist philosophers along the lines to be expounded in this article. Nurses such as Benner, Bevis, Dunlop, Fry and Gadow--to name but a few--have welcomed the concept of an 'ethic of care'. Gilligan's work gave a feminist view and situated ethics in the everyday aspects of responsiveness, responsibility, context and concern. Shutte's search for a 'philosophy for Africa' has resulted in finding similarities in Setiloane and in Senghor with those of Thomist philosophers. Using this African philosophy and a research participant's narrative, an African ethic evolves out of the African proverb: 'A person is a person through other persons', or its alternative rendering: 'I am because we are: we are because I am.' This hermeneutic narrative reveals 'the way affect imbues activity with ethical meaning' within the context of a black nursing sister in a rural South African hospital. It expands upon the above proverb and incorporates the South African constitutional idea of 'Ubuntu' (compassion and justice or humanness). PMID:11221391

  12. Chytridiomycosis in dwarf African frogs Hymenochirus curtipes.

    PubMed

    Murphy, B G; Hillman, C; Groff, J M

    2015-05-11

    Chytridiomycosis, resulting from an infection with the fungal agent Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), has resulted in widespread population declines in both wild and captive amphibians. The dwarf African frog (DAF) Hymenochirus curtipes is native to central Africa and is commonly sold throughout North America as an aquarium pet species. Here we document fatal chytridiomycosis resulting from cutaneous Bd infections in DAF purchased directly from a pet store and from a historical lethal epizootic occurring at an aquaculture facility in central California, USA, more than 25 yr ago. Histological lesions and PCR-amplified sequence data were consistent with the etiology of Bd. The potential epidemiological relevance of this infection in DAF is discussed. PMID:25958807

  13. Triangulating the provenance of African elephants using mitochondrial DNA

    PubMed Central

    Ishida, Yasuko; Georgiadis, Nicholas J; Hondo, Tomoko; Roca, Alfred L

    2013-01-01

    African elephant mitochondrial (mt) DNA follows a distinctive evolutionary trajectory. As females do not migrate between elephant herds, mtDNA exhibits low geographic dispersal. We therefore examined the effectiveness of mtDNA for assigning the provenance of African elephants (or their ivory). For 653 savanna and forest elephants from 22 localities in 13 countries, 4258 bp of mtDNA was sequenced. We detected eight mtDNA subclades, of which seven had regionally restricted distributions. Among 108 unique haplotypes identified, 72% were found at only one locality and 84% were country specific, while 44% of individuals carried a haplotype detected only at their sampling locality. We combined 316 bp of our control region sequences with those generated by previous trans-national surveys of African elephants. Among 101 unique control region haplotypes detected in African elephants across 81 locations in 22 countries, 62% were present in only a single country. Applying our mtDNA results to a previous microsatellite-based assignment study would improve estimates of the provenance of elephants in 115 of 122 mis-assigned cases. Nuclear partitioning followed species boundaries and not mtDNA subclade boundaries. For taxa such as elephants in which nuclear and mtDNA markers differ in phylogeography, combining the two markers can triangulate the origins of confiscated wildlife products. PMID:23798975

  14. A global sensitivity analysis for African sleeping sickness

    PubMed Central

    DAVIS, STEPHEN; AKSOY, SERAP; GALVANI, ALISON

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY African sleeping sickness is a parasitic disease transmitted through the bites of tsetse flies of the genus Glossina. We constructed mechanistic models for the basic reproduction number, R0, of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense and Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense, respectively the causative agents of West and East African human sleeping sickness. We present global sensitivity analyses of these models that rank the importance of the biological parameters that may explain variation in R0, using parameter ranges based on literature, field data and expertize out of Uganda. For West African sleeping sickness, our results indicate that the proportion of bloodmeals taken from humans by Glossina fuscipes fuscipes is the most important factor, suggesting that differences in the exposure of humans to tsetse are fundamental to the distribution of T. b. gambiense. The second ranked parameter for T. b. gambiense and the highest ranked for T. b. rhodesiense was the proportion of Glossina refractory to infection. This finding underlines the possible implications of recent work showing that nutritionally stressed tsetse are more susceptible to trypanosome infection, and provides broad support for control strategies in development that are aimed at increasing refractoriness in tsetse flies. We note though that for T. b. rhodesiense the population parameters for tsetse – species composition, survival and abundance – were ranked almost as highly as the proportion refractory, and that the model assumed regular treatment of livestock with trypanocides as an established practice in the areas of Uganda experiencing East African sleeping sickness. PMID:21078220

  15. Species Typing in Dermal Leishmaniasis

    PubMed Central

    Dujardin, Jean-Claude

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Leishmania is an infectious protozoan parasite related to African and American trypanosomes. All Leishmania species that are pathogenic to humans can cause dermal disease. When one is confronted with cutaneous leishmaniasis, identification of the causative species is relevant in both clinical and epidemiological studies, case management, and control. This review gives an overview of the currently existing and most used assays for species discrimination, with a critical appraisal of the limitations of each technique. The consensus taxonomy for the genus is outlined, including debatable species designations. Finally, a numerical literature analysis is presented that describes which methods are most used in various countries and regions in the world, and for which purposes. PMID:25672782

  16. African American Males. A Critical Link in the African American Family.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, Dionne J., Ed.

    African Americans are experiencing extreme stress in the United States, and African-American males appear to suffer the most. The chapters in this volume examine some of the issues confronting African-American men today. They include: (1) "Introduction" (Dionne J. Jones); (2) "Reaffirming Young African American Males: Mentoring and Community…

  17. African American Preschoolers' Language, Emergent Literacy Skills, and Use of African American English: A Complex Relation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Connor, Carol McDonald; Craig, Holly K.

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined the relation between African American preschoolers' use of African American English (AAE) and their language and emergent literacy skills in an effort to better understand the perplexing and persistent difficulties many African American children experience learning to read proficiently. Method: African American…

  18. Technical Consulting: The African-American Perspective

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Whitfield, Tracy N.

    2010-01-01

    The qualitative research study explored the organizational characteristics necessary in addressing the low concentration of African American technical consultants employed in the information technology industry. Using research participants' professional experience, participants responded to a developed questionnaire. African American technical…

  19. Towards an African Philosophy of Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ocaya-Lakidi, Dent

    1980-01-01

    Compares and contrasts contemporary philosophies of education in Africa with two philosophical doctrines (naturalism and idealism). Topics discussed include value selectors, westernization, the role of missionaries in African education, critical consciousness, relevance, and African education today. (DB)

  20. African-American Males: Endangered Species and the Most Paddled.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Richardson, Rita C.; Evans, Elizabeth T.

    This paper reviews studies on the use of corporal punishment in the nation, particularly in Louisiana public schools, and the impact of corporal punishment on black male students. The paper reviews the recent polls and studies on attitudes toward corporal punishment, noting that approval rates for use of paddling are significantly higher in…

  1. African N Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bekunda, M.; Galford, G. L.; Hickman, J. E.; Palm, C.

    2011-12-01

    Africa's smallholder agricultural systems face unique challenges in planning for reducing poverty, concurrent with adaptation and mitigation to climate change. At continental level, policy seeks to promote a uniquely African Green Revolution to increase crop yields and food production, and improve local livelihoods. However, the consequences on the environment and climate are not clear; these pro-economic development measures should be linked to climate change adaptation and mitigation measures, and research is required to help achieve these policy proposals by identifying options, and testing impacts. In particular, increased nitrogen (N) inputs are essential for increasing food production in Africa, but are accompanied by inevitable increases in losses to the environment. These losses appear to be low at input levels promoted in agricultural development programs, while the increased N inputs both increase current food production and appear to reduce the vulnerability of food production to changes in climate. We present field and remote sensing evidence from Malawi that subsidizing improved seed and fertilizers increases resilience to drought without adding excess N to the environment. In Kenya, field research identified thresholds in N2O losses, where emissions are very low at fertilization rates of less than 200 kg ha-1. Village-scale models have identified potential inefficiencies in the food production process where the largest losses of reactive N occur, and which could be targeted to reduce the amount of N released to the environment. We further review some on-going research activities and progress in Africa that compare different methods of managing resources that target resilience in food production and adaptation to climate change, using nutrient N as an indicator, while evaluating the effects of these resource management practices on ecosystems and the environment.

  2. The African Cultural Astronomy Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urama, Johnson O.; Holbrook, Jarita C.

    2011-06-01

    Indigenous, endogenous, traditional, or cultural astronomy focuses on the many ways that people and cultures interact with celestial bodies. In most parts of Africa, there is very little or no awareness about modern astronomy. However, like ancient people everywhere, Africans wondered at the sky and struggled to make sense of it. The African Cultural Astronomy Project aims to unearth the body of traditional knowledge of astronomy possessed by peoples of the different ethnic groups in Africa and to consider scientific interpretations when appropriate for cosmogonies and ancient astronomical practices. Regardless of scientific validity, every scientist can relate to the process of making observations and creating theoretical mechanisms for explaining what is observed. Through linking the traditional and the scientific, it is believed that this would be used to create awareness and interest in astronomy in most parts of Africa. This paper discusses the vision, challenges and prospects of the African Cultural Astronomy Project in her quest to popularize astronomy in Africa.

  3. West African crude production diversifies

    SciTech Connect

    Aalund, L.

    1983-06-01

    Nigeria, with its seven crude-oil export streams, dominated West African production and accounted for over 70% of the depressed 1.8 million b/d output from the region last year. However, during the 1970s a flurry of new producing fields, primarily off the African coast, diversified production among a number of countries and touched off a wave of oil activity. The Journal takes a close look at the quality of West African oil in this installment of assays on world export crudes. This issue covers, in alphabetical order, Bonny Light (Nigeria) to Espoir (Ivory Coast). A following issue will wrap up West Africa by presenting assays on crudes from Forcados Blend (Nigeria) to Zaire Crude (Zaire).

  4. Plio-pleistocene African climate

    SciTech Connect

    deMenocal, P.B.

    1995-10-06

    Marine records of African climate variability document a shift toward more arid conditions after 2.8 million years ago (Ma), evidently resulting from remote forcing by cold North Atlantic sea-surface temperatures associated with the onset of Northern Hemisphere glacial cycles. African climate before 2.8 Ma was regulated by low-latitude insolation forcing of monsoonal climate due to Earth orbital precession. Major steps in the evolution of African hominids and other vertebrates are coincident with shifts to more arid, open conditions near 2.8 Ma, 1.7 Ma, and 1.0 Ma, suggesting that some Pliocene (Plio)-Pleistocene speciation events may have been climatically mediated. 65 refs., 6 figs.

  5. Plio-Pleistocene African Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Demenocal, Peter B.

    1995-10-01

    Marine records of African climate variability document a shift toward more arid conditions after 2.8 million years ago (Ma), evidently resulting from remote forcing by cold North Atlantic sea-surface temperatures associated with the onset of Northern Hemisphere glacial cycles. African climate before 2.8 Ma was regulated by low-latitude insolation forcing of monsoonal climate due to Earth orbital precession. Major steps in the evolution of African hominids and other vertebrates are coincident with shifts to more arid, open conditions near 2.8 Ma, 1.7 Ma, and 1.0 Ma, suggesting that some Pliocene (Plio)-Pleistocene speciation events may have been climatically mediated.

  6. Illegal killing for ivory drives global decline in African elephants.

    PubMed

    Wittemyer, George; Northrup, Joseph M; Blanc, Julian; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Omondi, Patrick; Burnham, Kenneth P

    2014-09-01

    Illegal wildlife trade has reached alarming levels globally, extirpating populations of commercially valuable species. As a driver of biodiversity loss, quantifying illegal harvest is essential for conservation and sociopolitical affairs but notoriously difficult. Here we combine field-based carcass monitoring with fine-scale demographic data from an intensively studied wild African elephant population in Samburu, Kenya, to partition mortality into natural and illegal causes. We then expand our analytical framework to model illegal killing rates and population trends of elephants at regional and continental scales using carcass data collected by a Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species program. At the intensively monitored site, illegal killing increased markedly after 2008 and was correlated strongly with the local black market ivory price and increased seizures of ivory destined for China. More broadly, results from application to continental data indicated illegal killing levels were unsustainable for the species between 2010 and 2012, peaking to ∼ 8% in 2011 which extrapolates to ∼ 40,000 elephants illegally killed and a probable species reduction of ∼ 3% that year. Preliminary data from 2013 indicate overharvesting continued. In contrast to the rest of Africa, our analysis corroborates that Central African forest elephants experienced decline throughout the last decade. These results provide the most comprehensive assessment of illegal ivory harvest to date and confirm that current ivory consumption is not sustainable. Further, our approach provides a powerful basis to determine cryptic mortality and gain understanding of the demography of at-risk species. PMID:25136107

  7. Illegal killing for ivory drives global decline in African elephants

    PubMed Central

    Wittemyer, George; Northrup, Joseph M.; Blanc, Julian; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain; Omondi, Patrick; Burnham, Kenneth P.

    2014-01-01

    Illegal wildlife trade has reached alarming levels globally, extirpating populations of commercially valuable species. As a driver of biodiversity loss, quantifying illegal harvest is essential for conservation and sociopolitical affairs but notoriously difficult. Here we combine field-based carcass monitoring with fine-scale demographic data from an intensively studied wild African elephant population in Samburu, Kenya, to partition mortality into natural and illegal causes. We then expand our analytical framework to model illegal killing rates and population trends of elephants at regional and continental scales using carcass data collected by a Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species program. At the intensively monitored site, illegal killing increased markedly after 2008 and was correlated strongly with the local black market ivory price and increased seizures of ivory destined for China. More broadly, results from application to continental data indicated illegal killing levels were unsustainable for the species between 2010 and 2012, peaking to ∼8% in 2011 which extrapolates to ∼40,000 elephants illegally killed and a probable species reduction of ∼3% that year. Preliminary data from 2013 indicate overharvesting continued. In contrast to the rest of Africa, our analysis corroborates that Central African forest elephants experienced decline throughout the last decade. These results provide the most comprehensive assessment of illegal ivory harvest to date and confirm that current ivory consumption is not sustainable. Further, our approach provides a powerful basis to determine cryptic mortality and gain understanding of the demography of at-risk species. PMID:25136107

  8. A new species of Spongilla-fly from Western Africa (Neuroptera: Sisyridae).

    PubMed

    Monserrat, Victor J; Duelli, Peter

    2014-01-01

    A new species of spongilla-fly (Neuropterida, Neuroptera, Sisyridae: Sisyra) is described from Western Africa (Guinea and Ivory Coast). This new Sisyra species differs from all other known African species both in its morphology and genitalia, and it seems to be most closely related to a species in Thailand. PMID:25543749

  9. The Education of African-Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Willie, Charles V., Ed.; And Others

    The 17 papers in this volume are products of a study group on the education of African Americans that was part of a national project, "The Assessment of the Status of African-Americans." The volume takes a comprehensive look at the education of African Americans, specifically early childhood through postsecondary education, and relevant public…

  10. An Introduction to West African Literature.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taiwo, Oladele

    Intended to provide help for those interested in studying West African literature, this book is divided into three parts. Part One provides background information: the various African oral traditions are discussed, related to the way of life of the people, and examined for the extent to which they form the basis of present West African literary…

  11. Engaging African Americans in Smoking Cessation Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wallen, Jacqueline; Randolph, Suzanne; Carter-Pokras, Olivia; Feldman, Robert; Kanamori-Nishimura, Mariano

    2014-01-01

    Background: African Americans are disproportionately exposed to and targeted by prosmoking advertisements, particularly menthol cigarette ads. Though African Americans begin smoking later than whites, they are less likely to quit smoking than whites. Purpose: This study was designed to explore African American smoking cessation attitudes,…

  12. Freedom Road: Adult Education of African Americans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peterson, Elizabeth A., Ed.

    This book contains six chapters by various authors about the history of African Americans' contributions and participation in adult education. The book reports on how some African American leaders saw the connection between education and the eventual freedom or uplift of the African American people. Following a foreword (Phyllis M. Cunningham) and…

  13. A Scale To Assess African American Acculturation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Snowden, Lonnie R.; Hines, Alice M.

    1999-01-01

    Investigated an acculturation scale designed for use in the African-American population. Responses from more than 900 African Americans generally indicate an African-American orientation within the sample, although there are notable variations on all 10 scale items. Discusses evidence for scale reliability and validity. (SLD)

  14. Towards a Norm in South African Englishes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van der Walt, Johann L.; van Rooy, Bertus

    2002-01-01

    Investigates the perception and application of the norm in South African English with specific reference to Black South African English. Hypothesizes that South African English is in the hibernation and expansion phase. Three sets of data are presented and analyzed. (Author/VWL)

  15. African Heritage Curriculum Materials. Teacher's Manual.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Museum of African Art, Washington, DC.

    This guide for secondary teachers focuses on sub-Saharan (Black) African history and culture. Although the guide is intended to be used in conjunction with the audiovisual materials on African heritage produced by the Museum of African Art, it can also be used as a source of background reading for teachers and as a guide to additional…

  16. North American soft ticks (Ornithodoros spp.): biology and feral swine parasitism as risks for the emergence of African swine fever in the U.S.A.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    African Swine Fever (ASF) is an emerging arboviral disease that affects pigs. The causative agent is the double-stranded DNA African Swine Fever Virus (ASFV). Several soft tick species in the genus Ornithodoros are known arthropod vectors of ASFV. Infection with ASFV can result in a hemorrhagic synd...

  17. Social Structure Predicts Genital Morphology in African Mole-Rats

    PubMed Central

    Seney, Marianne L.; Kelly, Diane A.; Goldman, Bruce D.; Šumbera, Radim; Forger, Nancy G.

    2009-01-01

    Background African mole-rats (Bathyergidae, Rodentia) exhibit a wide range of social structures, from solitary to eusocial. We previously found a lack of sex differences in the external genitalia and morphology of the perineal muscles associated with the phallus in the eusocial naked mole-rat. This was quite surprising, as the external genitalia and perineal muscles are sexually dimorphic in all other mammals examined. We hypothesized that the lack of sex differences in naked mole-rats might be related to their unusual social structure. Methodology/Principal Findings We compared the genitalia and perineal muscles in three African mole-rat species: the naked mole-rat, the solitary silvery mole-rat, and the Damaraland mole-rat, a species considered to be eusocial, but with less reproductive skew than naked mole-rats. Our findings support a relationship between social structure, mating system, and sexual differentiation. Naked mole-rats lack sex differences in genitalia and perineal morphology, silvery mole-rats exhibit sex differences, and Damaraland mole-rats are intermediate. Conclusions/Significance The lack of sex differences in naked mole-rats is not an attribute of all African mole-rats, but appears to have evolved in relation to their unusual social structure and reproductive biology. PMID:19829697

  18. Local plant names reveal that enslaved Africans recognized substantial parts of the New World flora.

    PubMed

    van Andel, Tinde R; van 't Klooster, Charlotte I E A; Quiroz, Diana; Towns, Alexandra M; Ruysschaert, Sofie; van den Berg, Margot

    2014-12-16

    How did the forced migration of nearly 11 million enslaved Africans to the Americas influence their knowledge of plants? Vernacular plant names give insight into the process of species recognition, acquisition of new knowledge, and replacement of African species with American ones. This study traces the origin of 2,350 Afro-Surinamese (Sranantongo and Maroon) plant names to those plant names used by local Amerindians, Europeans, and related groups in West and Central Africa. We compared vernacular names from herbarium collections, literature, and recent ethnobotanical fieldwork in Suriname, Ghana, Benin, and Gabon. A strong correspondence in sound, structure, and meaning among Afro-Surinamese vernaculars and their equivalents in other languages for botanically related taxa was considered as evidence for a shared origin. Although 65% of the Afro-Surinamese plant names contained European lexical items, enslaved Africans have recognized a substantial part of the neotropical flora. Twenty percent of the Sranantongo and 43% of the Maroon plant names strongly resemble names currently used in diverse African languages for related taxa, represent translations of African ones, or directly refer to an Old World origin. The acquisition of new ethnobotanical knowledge is captured in vernaculars derived from Amerindian languages and the invention of new names for neotropical plants from African lexical terms. Plant names that combine African, Amerindian, and European words reflect a creolization process that merged ethnobotanical skills from diverse geographical and cultural sources into new Afro-American knowledge systems. Our study confirms the role of Africans as significant agents of environmental knowledge in the New World. PMID:25453066

  19. Local plant names reveal that enslaved Africans recognized substantial parts of the New World flora

    PubMed Central

    van ‘t Klooster, Charlotte I. E. A.; Towns, Alexandra M.; Ruysschaert, Sofie; van den Berg, Margot

    2014-01-01

    How did the forced migration of nearly 11 million enslaved Africans to the Americas influence their knowledge of plants? Vernacular plant names give insight into the process of species recognition, acquisition of new knowledge, and replacement of African species with American ones. This study traces the origin of 2,350 Afro-Surinamese (Sranantongo and Maroon) plant names to those plant names used by local Amerindians, Europeans, and related groups in West and Central Africa. We compared vernacular names from herbarium collections, literature, and recent ethnobotanical fieldwork in Suriname, Ghana, Benin, and Gabon. A strong correspondence in sound, structure, and meaning among Afro-Surinamese vernaculars and their equivalents in other languages for botanically related taxa was considered as evidence for a shared origin. Although 65% of the Afro-Surinamese plant names contained European lexical items, enslaved Africans have recognized a substantial part of the neotropical flora. Twenty percent of the Sranantongo and 43% of the Maroon plant names strongly resemble names currently used in diverse African languages for related taxa, represent translations of African ones, or directly refer to an Old World origin. The acquisition of new ethnobotanical knowledge is captured in vernaculars derived from Amerindian languages and the invention of new names for neotropical plants from African lexical terms. Plant names that combine African, Amerindian, and European words reflect a creolization process that merged ethnobotanical skills from diverse geographical and cultural sources into new Afro-American knowledge systems. Our study confirms the role of Africans as significant agents of environmental knowledge in the New World. PMID:25453066

  20. Differential gene expression in response to Papaya ringspot virus infection in Cucumis metuliferus using cDNA-amplified fragment length polymorphism analysis.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yu-Tsung; Jan, Fuh-Jyh; Lin, Chia-Wei; Chung, Chien-Hung; Chen, Jo-Chu; Yeh, Shy-Dong; Ku, Hsin-Mei

    2013-01-01

    A better understanding of virus resistance mechanisms can offer more effective strategies to control virus diseases. Papaya ringspot virus (PRSV), Potyviridae, causes severe economical losses in papaya and cucurbit production worldwide. However, no resistance gene against PRSV has been identified to date. This study aimed to identify candidate PRSV resistance genes using cDNA-AFLP analysis and offered an open architecture and transcriptomic method to study those transcripts differentially expressed after virus inoculation. The whole genome expression profile of Cucumis metuliferus inoculated with PRSV was generated using cDNA-amplified fragment length polymorphism (cDNA-AFLP) method. Transcript derived fragments (TDFs) identified from the resistant line PI 292190 may represent genes involved in the mechanism of PRSV resistance. C. metuliferus susceptible Acc. 2459 and resistant PI 292190 lines were inoculated with PRSV and subsequently total RNA was isolated for cDNA-AFLP analysis. More than 400 TDFs were expressed specifically in resistant line PI 292190. A total of 116 TDFs were cloned and their expression patterns and putative functions in the PRSV-resistance mechanism were further characterized. Subsequently, 28 out of 116 candidates which showed two-fold higher expression levels in resistant PI 292190 than those in susceptible Acc. 2459 after virus inoculation were selected from the reverse northern blot and bioinformatic analysis. Furthermore, the time point expression profiles of these candidates by northern blot analysis suggested that they might play roles in resistance against PRSV and could potentially provide valuable information for controlling PRSV disease in the future. PMID:23874746

  1. Differential Gene Expression in Response to Papaya ringspot virus Infection in Cucumis metuliferus Using cDNA- Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Chia-Wei; Chung, Chien-Hung; Chen, Jo-Chu; Yeh, Shy-Dong; Ku, Hsin-Mei

    2013-01-01

    A better understanding of virus resistance mechanisms can offer more effective strategies to control virus diseases. Papaya ringspot virus (PRSV), Potyviridae, causes severe economical losses in papaya and cucurbit production worldwide. However, no resistance gene against PRSV has been identified to date. This study aimed to identify candidate PRSV resistance genes using cDNA-AFLP analysis and offered an open architecture and transcriptomic method to study those transcripts differentially expressed after virus inoculation. The whole genome expression profile of Cucumis metuliferus inoculated with PRSV was generated using cDNA-amplified fragment length polymorphism (cDNA-AFLP) method. Transcript derived fragments (TDFs) identified from the resistant line PI 292190 may represent genes involved in the mechanism of PRSV resistance. C. metuliferus susceptible Acc. 2459 and resistant PI 292190 lines were inoculated with PRSV and subsequently total RNA was isolated for cDNA-AFLP analysis. More than 400 TDFs were expressed specifically in resistant line PI 292190. A total of 116 TDFs were cloned and their expression patterns and putative functions in the PRSV-resistance mechanism were further characterized. Subsequently, 28 out of 116 candidates which showed two-fold higher expression levels in resistant PI 292190 than those in susceptible Acc. 2459 after virus inoculation were selected from the reverse northern blot and bioinformatic analysis. Furthermore, the time point expression profiles of these candidates by northern blot analysis suggested that they might play roles in resistance against PRSV and could potentially provide valuable information for controlling PRSV disease in the future. PMID:23874746

  2. Phytotoxicity of ZnO nanoparticles and the released Zn(II) ion to corn (Zea mays L.) and cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) during germination.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ruichang; Zhang, Haibo; Tu, Chen; Hu, Xuefeng; Li, Lianzhen; Luo, Yongming; Christie, Peter

    2015-07-01

    Toxicity of engineered nanoparticles on organisms is of concern worldwide due to their extensive use and unique properties. The impacts of ZnO nanoparticles (ZnO NPs) on seed germination and root elongation of corn (Zea mays L.) and cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) were investigated in this study. The role of seed coats of corn in the mitigation toxicity of nanoparticles was also evaluated. ZnO NPs (1,000 mg L(-1)) reduced root length of corn and cucumber by 17 % (p < 0.05) and 51 % (p < 0.05), respectively, but exhibited no effects on germination. In comparison with Zn(2+), toxicity of ZnO NPs on the root elongation of corn could be attributed to the nanoparticulate ZnO, while released Zn ion from ZnO could solely contribute to the inhibition of root elongation of cucumber. Zn uptake in corn exposed to ZnO NPs during germination was much higher than that in corn exposed to Zn(2+), whereas Zn uptake in cucumber was significantly correlated with soluble Zn in suspension. It could be inferred that Zn was taken up by corn and cucumber mainly in the form of ZnO NPs and soluble Zn, respectively. Transmission electron microscope confirmed the uptake of ZnO NPs into root of corn. Although isolation of the seed coats might not be the principal factor that achieved avoidance from toxicity on germination, seed coats of corn were found to mitigate the toxicity of ZnO NPs on root elongation and prevent approximately half of the Zn from entering into root and endosperm. PMID:25794580

  3. The effect of a microgravity (space) environment on the expression of expansins from the peg and root tissues of Cucumis sativus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Link, B. M.; Wagner, E. R.; Cosgrove, D. J.

    2001-01-01

    In young cucumber seedlings, the peg is a polar outgrowth of tissue that functions by snagging the seed coat, thereby freeing the cotyledons. The development of the peg is thought to be gravity-dependent and has become a model system for plant-gravity response. Peg development requires rapid cell expansion, a process thought to be catalyzed by alpha-expansins, and thus was a good system to identify expansins that were regulated by gravity. This study identified 7 new alpha-expansin cDNAs from cucumber seedlings (Cucumis sativus L. cv Burpee Hybrid II) and examined their expression patterns. Two alpha-expansins (CsExp3 and CsExp4) were more highly expressed in the peg and the root. Earlier reports stated that pegs tend not to form in the absence of gravity, so the expression levels were compared in the pegs of seedlings grown in space (STS-95), on a clinostat, and on earth (1 g). Pegs were observed to form at high frequency on clinostat and space-grown seedlings, yet on clinostats there was more than a 4-fold reduction in the expression of CsExp3 in the pegs of seedlings grown on clinostats vs. those grown at 1 g, while the CsExp4 gene appeared to be turned off (below detection limits). There were no detectable differences in expansin gene expression levels for the pegs of seedlings grown in space or in the orbiter environmental simulator (OES) (1 g) at NASA. The microgravity environment did not affect the expression of CsExp3 or CsExp4, and the clinostat did not simulate the microgravity environment well.

  4. CsNIP2;1 is a Plasma Membrane Transporter from Cucumis sativus that Facilitates Urea Uptake When Expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Arabidopsis thaliana.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Lu; Yan, Jiapei; Vatamaniuk, Olena K; Du, Xiangge

    2016-03-01

    Urea is an important source of nitrogen (N) for the growth and development of plants. It occurs naturally in soils, is the major N source in agricultural fertilizers and is an important N metabolite in plants. Therefore, the identification and characterization of urea transporters in higher plants is important for the fundamental understanding of urea-based N nutrition in plants and for designing novel strategies for improving the N-use efficiency of urea based-fertilizers. Progress in this area, however, is hampered due to scarce knowledge of plant urea transporters. From what is known, urea uptake from the soil into plant roots is mediated by two types of transporters: the major intrinsic proteins (MIPs) and the DUR3 orthologs, mediating low- and high-affinity urea transport, respectively. Here we characterized a MIP family member from Cucumis sativus, CsNIP2;1, with regard to its contribution to urea transport. We show that CsNIP2;1 is a plasma membrane transporter that mediates pH-dependent urea uptake when expressed in yeast. We also found that ectopic expression of CsNIP2;1 improves growth of wild-type Arabidopsis thaliana and rescues growth and development of the atdur3-3 mutant on medium with urea as the sole N source. In addition, CsNIP2;1 is transcriptionally up-regulated by N deficiency, urea and NO3 (-). These data and results from the analyses of the pattern of CsNIP2;1 expression in A. thaliana and cucumber suggest that CsNIP2;1 might be involved in multiple steps of urea-based N nutrition, including urea uptake and internal transport during N remobilization throughout seed germination and N delivery to developing tissues. PMID:26858284

  5. Functional characterization and expression analysis of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) hexose transporters, involving carbohydrate partitioning and phloem unloading in sink tissues.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Jin-Tao; Li, Xiang; Yao, Feng-Zhen; Shan, Nan; Li, Ya-Hui; Zhang, Zhen-Xian; Sui, Xiao-Lei

    2015-08-01

    Many hexose transporters (HTs) have been reported to play roles in sucrose-transporting plants. However, little information about roles of HTs in RFOs (raffinose family oligosaccharides)-transporting plants has been reported. Here, three hexose transporters (CsHT2, CsHT3, and CsHT4) were cloned from Cucumis sativus L. Heterologous expression in yeast demonstrated that CsHT3 transported glucose, galactose and mannose, with a K(m) of 131.9 μM for glucose, and CsHT4 only transported galactose, while CsHT2 was non-functional. Both CsHT3 and CsHT4 were targeted to the plasma membrane of cucumber protoplasts. Spatio-temporal expression indicated that transcript level of CsHT3 was much higher than that of CsHT2 and CsHT4 in most tissues, especially in peduncles and fruit tissues containing vascular bundles. GUS staining of CsHT3-promoter-β-glucuronidase (GUS) transgenic Arabidopsis plants revealed CsHT3 expression in tissues with high metabolic turnover, suggesting that CsHT3 is involved in sugar competition among different sink organs during plant development. The transcript levels of CsHT3 and cell wall invertase genes increased in peduncles and fruit tissues along with cucumber fruit enlargement, and CsHT3 localized to phloem tissues by immunohistochemical localization; These results suggest that CsHT3 probably plays an important role in apoplastic phloem unloading of cucumber fruit. PMID:26089151

  6. The Effect of CmLOXs on the Production of Volatile Organic Compounds in Four Aroma Types of Melon (Cucumis melo)

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Yufan; Zhang, Chong; Cao, Songxiao; Wang, Xiao; Qi, Hongyan

    2015-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) play important role in the synthesis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which influence the aroma of fruit. In this study, we elucidate that there is a positive relationship between LOXs activity and VOC production in melon (Cucumis melo), and CmLOX genes are involved in fruit aroma generation in melon. To this end, we tested four aroma types of melon that feature a thin pericarp: two aromatic cultivars of the oriental melons (C. melo var. makuwa Makino), ‘Yu Meiren’ (YMR) and ‘Cui Bao’ (CB); a non-aromatic oriental pickling melon (C. melo var. conomon), ‘Shao Gua’ (SHAO); and a non-aromatic snake melon (C. melo L. var. flexuosus Naud), ‘Cai Gua’ (CAI). A principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that the aromas of SHAO and CAI are similar in nature because their ester contents are lower than those of YMR and CB. Ethyl acetate, benzyl acetate, (E, Z)-2, 6-nonadienal and menthol are four principal volatile compounds that affect the aromatic characteristics of these four types of melons. The LOX activity and total ester content in YMR were the highest among the examined melon varieties. The expression patterns of 18 CmLOX genes were found to vary based on the aromatic nature of the melon. Four of them were highly expressed in YMR. Moreover, we treated the fruit disks of YMR with LOX substrates (linoleic acid and linolenic acid) and LOX inhibitors (n-propyl gallate and nordihydroguariaretic acid). Substrate application promoted LOX activity and induced accumulation of hexanal, (2E)-nonenal and straight-chain esters, such as ethyl acetate. In contrast, LOX inhibitors decreased the levels of these compounds. The effect of CmLOXs in the biosynthesis of esters in melons are discussed. PMID:26599669

  7. High-Throughput Sequencing Identifies Novel and Conserved Cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) microRNAs in Response to Cucumber Green Mottle Mosaic Virus Infection

    PubMed Central

    Liang, C. Q.; Jiang, N.; Liu, P. F.; Li, J. Q.

    2015-01-01

    Seedlings of Cucumis sativus L. (cv. 'Zhongnong 16') were artificially inoculated with Cucumber green mottle mosaic virus (CGMMV) at the three-true-leaf stage. Leaf and flower samples were collected at different time points post-inoculation (10, 30 and 50 d), and processed by high throughput sequencing analysis to identify candidate miRNA sequences. Bioinformatic analysis using screening criteria, and secondary structure prediction, indicated that 8 novel and 23 known miRNAs (including 15 miRNAs described for the first time in vivo) were produced by cucumber plants in response to CGMMV infection. Moreover, gene expression profiles (p-value <0.01) validated the expression of 3 of the novel miRNAs and 3 of the putative candidate miRNAs and identified a further 82 conserved miRNAs in CGMMV-infected cucumbers. Gene ontology (GO) analysis revealed that the predicted target genes of these 88 miRNAs, which were screened using the psRNATarget and miRanda algorithms, were involved in three functional categories: 2265 in molecular function, 1362 as cellular components and 276 in biological process. The subsequent Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway analysis revealed that the predicted target genes were frequently involved in metabolic processes (166 pathways) and genetic information processes (40 pathways) and to a lesser degree the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites (12 pathways). These results could provide useful clues to help elucidate host-pathogen interactions in CGMMV and cucumber, as well as for the screening of resistance genes. PMID:26076360

  8. The Effect of CmLOXs on the Production of Volatile Organic Compounds in Four Aroma Types of Melon (Cucumis melo).

    PubMed

    Tang, Yufan; Zhang, Chong; Cao, Songxiao; Wang, Xiao; Qi, Hongyan

    2015-01-01

    Lipoxygenases (LOXs) play important role in the synthesis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which influence the aroma of fruit. In this study, we elucidate that there is a positive relationship between LOXs activity and VOC production in melon (Cucumis melo), and CmLOX genes are involved in fruit aroma generation in melon. To this end, we tested four aroma types of melon that feature a thin pericarp: two aromatic cultivars of the oriental melons (C. melo var. makuwa Makino), 'Yu Meiren' (YMR) and 'Cui Bao' (CB); a non-aromatic oriental pickling melon (C. melo var. conomon), 'Shao Gua' (SHAO); and a non-aromatic snake melon (C. melo L. var. flexuosus Naud), 'Cai Gua' (CAI). A principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that the aromas of SHAO and CAI are similar in nature because their ester contents are lower than those of YMR and CB. Ethyl acetate, benzyl acetate, (E, Z)-2, 6-nonadienal and menthol are four principal volatile compounds that affect the aromatic characteristics of these four types of melons. The LOX activity and total ester content in YMR were the highest among the examined melon varieties. The expression patterns of 18 CmLOX genes were found to vary based on the aromatic nature of the melon. Four of them were highly expressed in YMR. Moreover, we treated the fruit disks of YMR with LOX substrates (linoleic acid and linolenic acid) and LOX inhibitors (n-propyl gallate and nordihydroguariaretic acid). Substrate application promoted LOX activity and induced accumulation of hexanal, (2E)-nonenal and straight-chain esters, such as ethyl acetate. In contrast, LOX inhibitors decreased the levels of these compounds. The effect of CmLOXs in the biosynthesis of esters in melons are discussed. PMID:26599669

  9. African-American Children's Stories.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nichols, Patricia C.

    Examination of representative stories told by black American children of West African descent in South Carolina shows that specific cultural motifs have been preserved in the oral tradition of black communities. Typical stories are tales of the supernatural, such as the Hag story about mortals who shed their skin at night to do evil deeds.…

  10. African American Men in College

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cuyjet, Michael J., Ed.

    2006-01-01

    This book is a much-needed resource that includes examples of real-world programs and activities to enhance academic success in the college environment for African American men. The examples are collected from a variety of institutions across the country. With contributions from leading practitioners and scholars in the field, this book explores…

  11. Vitamin D and African Americans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vitamin D insufficiency is more prevalent among African Americans than other Americans and, in North America, most young, healthy blacks do not achieve optimal 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] concentrations at any time of the year. This is primarily due to the fact that pigmentation reduces vitamin D...

  12. Classic African American Children's Literature

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McNair, Jonda C.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to assert that there are classic African American children's books and to identify a sampling of them. The author presents multiple definitions of the term classic based on the responses of children's literature experts and relevant scholarship. Next, the manner in which data were collected and analyzed in regard to…

  13. The identity of the South African toad Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 (Amphibia, Anura).

    PubMed

    Ohler, Annemarie; Dubois, Alain

    2016-01-01

    The toad species Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 was erected for a single specimen from South Africa which has never been properly studied and allocated to a known species. A morphometrical and morphological analysis of this specimen and its comparison with 75 toad specimens referred to five South African toad species allowed to allocate this specimen to the species currently known as Amietophrynus rangeri. In consequence, the nomen Sclerophrys must replace Amietophrynus as the valid nomen of the genus, and capensis as the valid nomen of the species. This work stresses the usefulness of natural history collections for solving taxonomic and nomenclatural problems. PMID:26788431

  14. The identity of the South African toad Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 (Amphibia, Anura)

    PubMed Central

    Dubois, Alain

    2016-01-01

    The toad species Sclerophrys capensis Tschudi, 1838 was erected for a single specimen from South Africa which has never been properly studied and allocated to a known species. A morphometrical and morphological analysis of this specimen and its comparison with 75 toad specimens referred to five South African toad species allowed to allocate this specimen to the species currently known as Amietophrynus rangeri. In consequence, the nomen Sclerophrys must replace Amietophrynus as the valid nomen of the genus, and capensis as the valid nomen of the species. This work stresses the usefulness of natural history collections for solving taxonomic and nomenclatural problems. PMID:26788431

  15. Morphometrics and adaptatives aspects in africanized honeybees (Apis mellifera).

    PubMed

    Oliveira; Brandeburgo; Marcolino

    2000-05-01

    The introduction of the African bees (Apis mellifera scutelata) in Brazil and their expansion in the American Continent created the opportunity to study the process of species adaptation in a new environment. In that process, within intra-specific variability, normalising selection can favour individuals that present a better adaptative morphology and they will constitute the most frequent type found in the population. To test that hypothesis morphometric analyses in samples of colonies of africanized bees and in samples of the populations were performed. The development of the colonies was also evaluated in terms of the amount of their brood, honey and pollen. Analysis of the data indicates that more developed colonies are formed by individuals closer to the population average with concerning morphological traits. PMID:10959115

  16. Developing anatomical terms in an African language.

    PubMed

    Madzimbamuto, Farai Daniel

    2012-03-01

    Clinical and technical information imparted in most African languages involves inexact terminology and code switching, so it lacks the explanatory power characterised by the English language. African languages are absent in the tertiary science education environment and forums where African scientists could present scientific material in the medium of African languages. This limits the development of African languages in the scientific domain. There has recently been a trend in several African languages to develop and intellectualise them, especially in the field of medical sciences. The ChiShona language is used to explore the ability of an African language to develop new terminology, to name the vertebral skeleton and describe it scientifically. It uses word compounding to demonstrate terminology development. ChiShona has similarities with several hundred other Bantu languages in East, Central and Southern Africa. Advancing this language can promote similar developments in others, making them more explanatory for the lay public and health professionals. PMID:22380900

  17. African human mtDNA phylogeography at-a-glance.

    PubMed

    Rosa, Alexandra; Brehem, António

    2011-01-01

    The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) genetic system has long proven to be useful for studying the demographic history of our species, since their proposed Southeast/East African origin 200 kya. Despite the weak archaeological and anthropologic records, which render a difficult understanding of early intra- continental migrations, the phylogenetic L0-L1'6 split at about 140-160 kya is thought to represent also an early sub-structuring of small and isolated communities in South and East Africa. Regional variation accumulated over the following millennia, with L2 and L3 lineages arising in Central and East Africa 100-75 kya. Their sub-Saharan dispersal not later than 60 kya, largely overwhelmed the L0'1 distribution, nowadays limited to South African Khoisan and Central African Pygmies. Cyclic expansions and retractions of the equatorial forest between 40 kya and the "Last Glacial Aridity Maximum" were able to reduce the genetic diversity of modern humans. Surviving regional-specific lineages have emerged from the Sahelian refuge areas, repopulating the region and contributing to the overall West African genetic similarity. Particular L1- L3 lineages mirror the substantial population growth made possible by moister and warmer conditions of the Sahara's Wet Phase and the adoption of agriculture and iron smelting techniques. The diffusion of the farming expertise from a Central African source towards South Africa was mediated by the Bantu people 3 kya. The strong impact of their gene flow almost erased the pre-existent maternal pool. Non-L mtDNAs testify for Eurasian lineages that have enriched the African maternal pool at different timeframes: i) Near and Middle Eastern influences in Upper Palaeolithic, probably link to the spread of Afro-Asiatic languages; ii) particular lineages from West Eurasia around or after the glacial period; iii) post-glacial mtDNA signatures from the Franco-Cantabrian refugia, that have crossed the Strait of Gibraltar and iv) Eurasian lineages

  18. Mitochondrial sequences show diverse evolutionary histories of African hominoids.

    PubMed

    Gagneux, P; Wills, C; Gerloff, U; Tautz, D; Morin, P A; Boesch, C; Fruth, B; Hohmann, G; Ryder, O A; Woodruff, D S

    1999-04-27

    Phylogenetic trees for the four extant species of African hominoids are presented, based on mtDNA control region-1 sequences from 1,158 unique haplotypes. We include 83 new haplotypes of western chimpanzees and bonobos. Phylogenetic analysis of this enlarged database, which takes intraspecific geographic variability into account, reveals different patterns of evolution among species and great heterogeneity in species-level variation. Several chimpanzee and bonobo clades (and even single social groups) have retained substantially more mitochondrial variation than is seen in the entire human species. Among the 811 human haplotypes, those that branch off early are predominantly but not exclusively African. Neighbor joining trees provide strong evidence that eastern chimpanzee and human clades have experienced reduced effective population sizes, the latter apparently since the Homo sapiens-neanderthalensis split. Application of topiary pruning resolves ambiguities in the phylogenetic tree that are attributable to homoplasies in the data set. The diverse patterns of mtDNA sequence variation seen in today's hominoid taxa probably reflect historical differences in ecological plasticity, female-biased dispersal, range fragmentation over differing periods of time, and competition among social groups. These results are relevant to the origin of zoonotic diseases, including HIV-1, and call into question some aspects of the current taxonomic treatment and conservation management of gorillas and chimpanzees. PMID:10220421

  19. Long-Term In Vitro System for Maintenance and Amplification of Root-Knot Nematodes in Cucumis sativus Roots.

    PubMed

    Díaz-Manzano, Fernando E; Olmo, Rocío; Cabrera, Javier; Barcala, Marta; Escobar, Carolina; Fenoll, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Root-knot nematodes (RKN) are polyphagous plant-parasitic roundworms that produce large crop losses, representing a relevant agricultural pest worldwide. After infection, they induce swollen root structures called galls containing giant cells (GCs) indispensable for nematode development. Among efficient control methods are biotechnology-based strategies that require a deep knowledge of underlying molecular processes during the plant-nematode interaction. Methods of achieving this knowledge include the application of molecular biology techniques such as transcriptomics (as massive sequencing or microarray hybridization), proteomics or metabolomics. These require aseptic experimental conditions, as undetected contamination with other microorganisms could compromise the interpretation of the results. Herein, we present a simple, efficient and long-term method for nematode amplification on cucumber roots grown in vitro. Amplification of juveniles (J2) from the starting inoculum is around 40-fold. The method was validated for three Meloidogyne species (Meloidogyne javanica, M. incognita, and M. arenaria), producing viable and robust freshly hatched J2s. These J2s can be used for further in vitro infection of different plant species such as Arabidopsis, tobacco and tomato, as well as to maintain and amplify the population. The method allowed maintenance of around 90 Meloidogyne sp. generations (one every 2 months) from a single initial female over 15 years. PMID:26941745

  20. Long-Term In Vitro System for Maintenance and Amplification of Root-Knot Nematodes in Cucumis sativus Roots

    PubMed Central

    Díaz-Manzano, Fernando E.; Olmo, Rocío; Cabrera, Javier; Barcala, Marta; Escobar, Carolina; Fenoll, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Root-knot nematodes (RKN) are polyphagous plant-parasitic roundworms that produce large crop losses, representing a relevant agricultural pest worldwide. After infection, they induce swollen root structures called galls containing giant cells (GCs) indispensable for nematode development. Among efficient control methods are biotechnology-based strategies that require a deep knowledge of underlying molecular processes during the plant-nematode interaction. Methods of achieving this knowledge include the application of molecular biology techniques such as transcriptomics (as massive sequencing or microarray hybridization), proteomics or metabolomics. These require aseptic experimental conditions, as undetected contamination with other microorganisms could compromise the interpretation of the results. Herein, we present a simple, efficient and long-term method for nematode amplification on cucumber roots grown in vitro. Amplification of juveniles (J2) from the starting inoculum is around 40-fold. The method was validated for three Meloidogyne species (Meloidogyne javanica, M. incognita, and M. arenaria), producing viable and robust freshly hatched J2s. These J2s can be used for further in vitro infection of different plant species such as Arabidopsis, tobacco and tomato, as well as to maintain and amplify the population. The method allowed maintenance of around 90 Meloidogyne sp. generations (one every 2 months) from a single initial female over 15 years. PMID:26941745

  1. AN EXPLORATION OF DIVERSITY AMONG THE OSTERTAGIINAE: AFRICANASTRONGYLUS BUCEROS GEN. NOV. ET SP. NOV. (NEMATODA: TRICHOSTRONGYLOIDEA) IN AFRICAN BUFFALO (SYNCERUS CAFFER).

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Abomasal nematodes (Ostertagiine: Trichostrongyloidea) representing a previously unrecognized genus and species are reported in African Buffalo (Syncerus caffer caffer) from Kenya, Uganda and South Africa. Africanastrongylus buceros gen. nov. et sp. nov. is characterized by a symmetrical tapering ...

  2. Identification and characterisation of vaginal lactobacilli from South African women

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Bacterial vaginosis (BV), which is highly prevalent in the African population, is one of the most common vaginal syndromes affecting women in their reproductive age placing them at increased risk for sexually transmitted diseases including infection by human immunodeficiency virus-1. The vaginal microbiota of a healthy woman is often dominated by the species belonging to the genus Lactobacillus namely L. crispatus, L. gasseri, L. jensenii and L. iners, which have been extensively studied in European populations, albeit less so in South African women. In this study, we have therefore identified the vaginal Lactobacillus species in a group of 40 African women from Soweto, a township on the outskirts of Johannesburg, South Africa. Methods Identification was done by cultivating the lactobacilli on Rogosa agar, de Man-Rogosa-Sharpe (MRS) and Blood agar plates with 5% horse blood followed by sequencing of the 16S ribosomal DNA. BV was diagnosed on the basis of Nugent scores. Since some of the previous studies have shown that the lack of vaginal hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) producing lactobacilli is associated with bacterial vaginosis, the Lactobacillus isolates were also characterised for their production of H2O2. Results Cultivable Lactobacillus species were identified in 19 out of 21 women without BV, in three out of five women with intermediate microbiota and in eight out of 14 women with BV. We observed that L. crispatus, L. iners, L. jensenii, L. gasseri and L. vaginalis were the predominant species. The presence of L. crispatus was associated with normal vaginal microbiota (P = 0.024). High level of H2O2 producing lactobacilli were more often isolated from women with normal microbiota than from the women with BV, although not to a statistically significant degree (P = 0.064). Conclusion The vaginal Lactobacillus species isolated from the cohort of South African women are similar to those identified in European populations. In accordance with the other

  3. Establishment of baseline haematology and biochemistry parameters in wild adult African penguins (Spheniscus demersus).

    PubMed

    Parsons, Nola J; Schaefer, Adam M; van der Spuy, Stephen D; Gous, Tertius A

    2015-01-01

    There are few publications on the clinical haematology and biochemistry of African penguins (Spheniscus demersus) and these are based on captive populations. Baseline haematology and serum biochemistry parameters were analysed from 108 blood samples from wild, adult African penguins. Samples were collected from the breeding range of the African penguin in South Africa and the results were compared between breeding region and sex. The haematological parameters that were measured were: haematocrit, haemoglobin, red cell count and white cell count. The biochemical parameters that were measured were: sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, inorganic phosphate, creatinine, cholesterol, serum glucose, uric acid, bile acid, total serum protein, albumin, aspartate transaminase and creatine kinase. All samples were serologically negative for selected avian diseases and no blood parasites were detected. No haemolysis was present in any of the analysed samples. Male African penguins were larger and heavier than females, with higher haematocrit, haemoglobin and red cell count values, but lower calcium and phosphate values. African penguins in the Eastern Cape were heavier than those in the Western Cape, with lower white cell count and globulin values and a higher albumin/globulin ratio, possibly indicating that birds are in a poorer condition in the Western Cape. Results were also compared between multiple penguin species and with African penguins in captivity. These values for healthy, wild, adult penguins can be used for future health and disease assessments. PMID:26016391

  4. Evolutionary and comparative anatomical investigations of the autonomic cardiac nervous system in the African Cercopithecidae.

    PubMed

    Kawashima, Tomokazu; Akita, Keiichi; Sato, Kenji; Sasaki, Hiroshi

    2007-09-01

    The purpose of this study was to clarify the general architecture and morphological variations of the autonomic cardiac nervous system (ACNS) in the African Cercopithecidae (Old World monkeys), and to discuss the evolutionary changes between this system in African/Asian Cercopithecidae and humans. A detailed macroscopic comparative morphological investigation of the ACNS was performed by examining the left and right sides of 11 African cercopithecid specimens, including some previously unreported species (Abyssinian colobus, Angola pied colobus, Savanna monkey, and lesser white-nosed guenon). The common characteristics of the ACNS in the African Cercopithecidae are described in detail. Consequently, homologies of the ACNS between Asian (macaques) and African Cercopithecidae, and differences between the Asian/African Cercopithecidae and humans, were found. In particular, differences in the sympathetic (cardiac) systems of the Cercopithecidae and humans were recognized, despite the similar morphology of the parasympathetic vagal (cardiac) system. These differences include the composition of the cervicothoracic ganglion, the lower positions of the middle cervical and cervicothoracic ganglia, and the narrow range for the origin of the cardiac nerves in the Cercopithecidae, compared with that in humans. In conclusion, these findings are considered with regard to the morphology of the last common ancestors of the Cercopithecidae. PMID:17591730

  5. Abnormal hematologic findings in an African hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris) with gastrointestinal lymphosarcoma.

    PubMed

    Helmer, P J

    2000-06-01

    A 4-year-old African hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris) was examined for weight loss and hematochezia, and was subsequently diagnosed with gastrointestinal lymphosarcoma. Abnormal hematological findings included marked leukocytosis with lymphocytosis and atypical circulating lymphocytes. This report represents the first documentation of hemogram abnormalities associated with gastrointestinal lymphosarcoma in this species. PMID:10857034

  6. Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in an African pygmy hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris).

    PubMed

    Couture, Émilie L; Langlois, Isabelle; Santamaria-Bouvier, Ariane; Benoit-Biancamano, Marie-Odile

    2015-12-01

    A cutaneous mass was surgically excised in a 4-year-old African pygmy hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris). A squamous cell carcinoma was diagnosed based on histopathological examination and local recurrence following excision is strongly suspected. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first well-documented report of a cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in this species. PMID:26663924

  7. Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in an African pygmy hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris)

    PubMed Central

    Couture, Émilie L.; Langlois, Isabelle; Santamaria-Bouvier, Ariane; Benoit-Biancamano, Marie-Odile

    2015-01-01

    A cutaneous mass was surgically excised in a 4-year-old African pygmy hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris). A squamous cell carcinoma was diagnosed based on histopathological examination and local recurrence following excision is strongly suspected. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first well-documented report of a cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in this species. PMID:26663924

  8. Abnormal hematologic findings in an African hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris) with gastrointestinal lymphosarcoma.

    PubMed Central

    Helmer, P J

    2000-01-01

    A 4-year-old African hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris) was examined for weight loss and hematochezia, and was subsequently diagnosed with gastrointestinal lymphosarcoma. Abnormal hematological findings included marked leukocytosis with lymphocytosis and atypical circulating lymphocytes. This report represents the first documentation of hemogram abnormalities associated with gastrointestinal lymphosarcoma in this species. PMID:10857034

  9. Veterinary diclofenac threatens Africa's endangered vulture species.

    PubMed

    Naidoo, V; Wolter, K; Cuthbert, R; Duncan, N

    2009-04-01

    Veterinary diclofenac has been responsible for the devastation of three species of Gyps vulture on the Indian subcontinent, and it is now regarded as one of the worst environmental contaminants in the recent past. While measures have been taken to control the manufacture of veterinary diclofenac in South Asia, the promotion of diclofenac on the African continent poses a risk to vultures in this region. In Southern Africa, the species of greatest conservation concern is the Cape Griffon Vulture (Gyps coprotheres), as only 2900 breeding pairs remain in the wild. The objective of this study was to test if this species is toxicologically sensitive to diclofenac. In a single dose-toxicity study, two adult Cape Griffon Vultures with severe injuries, that were considered to have a very poor prognostic outcome, were dosed intravenously with diclofenac at 0.8mg/kg. The changes in the clinical pathology were compared to the normal reference range established for 24 healthy Cape Griffon Vultures. Both birds died within 48h of dosing. The clinical signs, clinical pathology, gross pathology and histopathological finding were typical for diclofenac toxicity. It would appear that the sensitivity of the Cape Griffon is similar to that of their Asian counterparts and the African White-backed Vulture (Gyps africanus). Diclofenac is almost certainly toxic to all Gyps vultures species and strong efforts must be taken to ensure that veterinary diclofenac products are not licensed or introduced to the African continent. PMID:19545505

  10. The UCAR Africa Initiative: Enabling African Solutions to African Needs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pandya, R.; Bruintjes, R.; Foote, B.; Heck, S.; Hermann, S.; Hoswell, L.; Konate, M.; Kucera, P.; Laing, A.; Lamptey, B.; Moncrieff, M.; Ramamurthy, M.; Roberts, R.; Spangler, T.; Traoré, A.; Yoksas, T.; Warner, T.

    2007-12-01

    The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) Africa Initiative (AI) is a coordinated effort aimed at building sustainable partnerships between UCAR and African institutions in order to pursue research and applications for the benefit of the African people. The initiative is based on four fundamental operating principles, concisely summarized by the overall philosophy of enabling African solutions to African needs. The four principles are: • Collaborate with African institutions • Focus on institutional capacity building and research support • Explore science research themes critical to Africa and important for the world • Leverage the research infrastructure in UCAR to add value These principles are realized in a set of pilot activities, chosen for their high probability of short-term results and ability to set the stage for longer-term collaboration. The three pilot activities are listed below. 1. A modest radar network and data-distribution system in Mali and Burkina Faso, including a data-sharing MOU between the Mail and Burkina Faso Weather Services. 2. A partnership among UCAR, the Ghana Meteorological Agency, and the Ghana university community to develop an operational Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model for West Africa. The output is used by researchers and operational forecasters in Africa. Model output is also part of a demonstration project that aims to allow humanitarian agencies to share geo-referenced information in Africa via a web portal. 3. A workshop in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso from April 2-6, 2007, with the theme Improving Lives by Understanding Weather. The workshop, co-organized with Programme SAAGA and the Commité Permanent Inter-Etats de Lutte Contre la Sécheresse dans le Sahel (CILSS), included over 80 participants from 18 countries, and produced a set of recommendations for continued collaboration. Our presentation will provide an update of these pilot activities and point to future directions. Recognizing

  11. Morphology of intestinal villi in African antelope (Artiodactyla: Bovidae).

    PubMed Central

    Woodall, P F; Skinner, J D

    1994-01-01

    Villous morphology in 16 species of African antelope varied from finger-like and leaf-like to ridge-like forms. Some species showed uniform villi whereas it was variable in others. There was a slight indication that leaf-like and finger-like forms become more frequent in the distal regions of the small intestine. The variation in morphology was not associated with body size or phylogeny, but did show a significant correlation with diet: species with high moisture content and/or high fibre levels (equivalent to low bulk values) in the digesta were more likely to have ridges, which were the lowest of the villi. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7928641

  12. Neural innovations and the diversification of African weakly electric fishes

    PubMed Central

    Arnegard, Matthew E.

    2011-01-01

    In African mormyrid fishes, evolutionary change in a sensory region of the brain established an ability to detect subtle variation in electric communication signals. In one lineage, this newfound perceptual ability triggered a dramatic increase in the rates of signal evolution and species diversification. This particular neural innovation is just one in a series of nested evolutionary novelties that characterize the sensory and motor systems of mormyrids, the most speciose group of extant osteoglossomorph fishes. Here we discuss the behavioral significance of these neural innovations, relate them to differences in extant species diversity, and outline possible scenarios by which some of these traits may have fueled diversification. We propose that sensory and motor capabilities limit the extent to which signals evolve and, by extension, the role of communication behavior in the process of speciation. By expanding these capabilities, neural innovations increase the potential for signal evolution and species diversification. PMID:22446537

  13. A single origin of extreme matrotrophy in African mabuyine skinks.

    PubMed

    Metallinou, Margarita; Weinell, Jeffrey L; Karin, Benjamin R; Conradie, Werner; Wagner, Philipp; Schmitz, Andreas; Jackman, Todd R; Bauer, Aaron M

    2016-08-01

    Most mammals and approximately 20% of squamates (lizards and snakes) are viviparous, whereas all crocodilians, birds and turtles are oviparous. Viviparity evolved greater than 100 times in squamates, including multiple times in Mabuyinae (Reptilia: Scincidae), making this group ideal for studying the evolution of nutritional patterns associated with viviparity. Previous studies suggest that extreme matrotrophy, the support of virtually all of embryonic development by maternal nutrients, evolved as many as three times in Mabuyinae: in Neotropical Mabuyinae (63 species), Eumecia (2 species; Africa) and Trachylepis ivensii (Africa). However, no explicit phylogenetic hypotheses exist for understanding the evolution of extreme matrotrophy. Using multilocus DNA data, we inferred a species tree for Mabuyinae that implies that T. ivensii (here assigned to the resurrected genus Lubuya) is sister to Eumecia, suggesting that extreme matrotrophy evolved only once in African mabuyine skinks. PMID:27555650

  14. Effect of silicon addition on soybean (Glycine max) and cucumber (Cucumis sativus) plants grown under iron deficiency.

    PubMed

    Gonzalo, María José; Lucena, Juan J; Hernández-Apaolaza, Lourdes

    2013-09-01

    Silicon is considered an essential element in several crops enhancing growth and alleviating different biotic and abiotic stresses. In this work, the role of Si in the alleviation of iron deficiency symptoms and in the Fe distribution in iron deficient plants has been studied. Thus, soybean and cucumber plants grown in hydroponic culture under iron limiting conditions were treated with different Si doses (0.0, 0.5 and 1.0 mM). The use of a strong chelating agent such as HBED avoided Fe co-precipitation in the nutrient solution and allowed for the first time the analysis of Si effect in iron nutrition without the interference of the iron rhizospheric precipitation. SPAD index, plant growth parameters and mineral content in plant organs were determined. For soybean, the addition of 0.5 mM of Si to the nutrient solution without iron, initially or continuously during the experiment, prevented the chlorophyll degradation, slowed down the growth decrease due to the iron deficiency and maintained the Fe content in leaves. In cucumber, Si addition delayed the decrease of stem dry weight, stem length, node number and iron content in stems and roots independently of the dose, but no-effect was observed in chlorosis symptoms alleviation in leaves. The observed response to Si addition in iron deficiency was plant-specific, probably related with the different Fe efficiency strategies developed by these two species. PMID:23845824

  15. Genetic diversity, introgression and relationships among West/Central African cattle breeds

    PubMed Central

    Ibeagha-Awemu, Eveline Mengwi; Jann, Oliver Carl; Weimann, Christina; Erhardt, Georg

    2004-01-01

    Genetic diversity, introgression and relationships were studied in 521 individuals from 9 African Bos indicus and 3 Bos taurus cattle breeds in Cameroon and Nigeria using genotype information on 28 markers (16 microsatellite, 7 milk protein and 5 blood protein markers). The genotypes of 13 of the 16 microsatellite markers studied on three European (German Angus, German Simmental and German Yellow) and two Indian (Nelore and Ongole) breeds were used to assess the relationships between them and the African breeds. Diversity levels at microsatellite loci were higher in the zebu than in the taurine breeds and were generally similar for protein loci in the breeds in each group. Microsatellite allelic distribution displayed groups of alleles specific to the Indian zebu, African taurine and European taurine. The level of the Indian zebu genetic admixture proportions in the African zebus was higher than the African taurine and European taurine admixture proportions, and ranged from 58.1% to 74.0%. The African taurine breed, Muturu was free of Indian zebu genes while its counter Namchi was highly introgressed (30.2%). Phylogenic reconstruction and principal component analysis indicate close relationships among the zebu breeds in Cameroon and Nigeria and a large genetic divergence between the main cattle groups – African taurine, European taurine and Indian zebu, and a central position for the African zebus. The study presents the first comprehensive information on the hybrid composition of the individual cattle breeds of Cameroon and Nigeria and the genetic relationships existing among them and other breeds outside of Africa. Strong evidence supporting separate domestication events for the Bos species is also provided. PMID:15496287

  16. 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

  17. Ontogeny of body size variation in African apes.

    PubMed

    Leigh, S R; Shea, B T

    1996-01-01

    Size variation in African apes (Gorilla gorilla [gorilla], Pan paniscus [pygmy chimpanzee], and Pan troglodytes ["common" chimpanzee]) is substantial, both within and between species. We investigate the possible evolutionary significance of this variation through an analysis of the ontogeny of size variation in this group. In addition, we highlight possible areas of future endocrinological research, and evaluate recently proposed alternative models that attempt to account for ontogenetic variation in apes. The present study shows that intergeneric variation in size is largely a consequence of differences among species in the rate of body weight growth. Interspecific size variation in Pan is a product of both rate and duration differences in growth. The ontogenetic bases of sexual dimorphism vary in this group. Dimorphism is largely a result of sex differences in the duration of body weight growth in gorillas and pygmy chimpanzees, but results from differences in the rate of growth in common chimpanzees. Ontogenetic analyses largely confirm earlier interpretations, but with better data and methods. The great degree of ontogenetic variation within and among these species, especially in the timing and magnitude of "pubertal" growth spurts, implies that studies of endocrine growth control in African apes could be a productive line of future research. We also suggest that ontogenetic variation can be understood with respect to ecological risks. Growth rates seem to be negatively correlated with ecological risk in African apes, suggesting links between ontogenetic patterns and social and ecological variables. High growth rates in gorillas compared to Pan are most consistent with this model. Variation between chimpanzees and pygmy chimpanzees (especially females) also seem to fit predictions of this model. PMID:8928723

  18. Genome-wide patterns of population structure and admixture in West Africans and African Americans.

    PubMed

    Bryc, Katarzyna; Auton, Adam; Nelson, Matthew R; Oksenberg, Jorge R; Hauser, Stephen L; Williams, Scott; Froment, Alain; Bodo, Jean-Marie; Wambebe, Charles; Tishkoff, Sarah A; Bustamante, Carlos D

    2010-01-12

    Quantifying patterns of population structure in Africans and African Americans illuminates the history of human populations and is critical for undertaking medical genomic studies on a global scale. To obtain a fine-scale genome-wide perspective of ancestry, we analyze Affymetrix GeneChip 500K genotype data from African Americans (n = 365) and individuals with ancestry from West Africa (n = 203 from 12 populations) and Europe (n = 400 from 42 countries). We find that population structure within the West African sample reflects primarily language and secondarily geographical distance, echoing the Bantu expansion. Among African Americans, analysis of genomic admixture by a principal component-based approach indicates that the median proportion of European ancestry is 18.5% (25th-75th percentiles: 11.6-27.7%), with very large variation among individuals. In the African-American sample as a whole, few autosomal regions showed exceptionally high or low mean African ancestry, but the X chromosome showed elevated levels of African ancestry, consistent with a sex-biased pattern of gene flow with an excess of European male and African female ancestry. We also find that genomic profiles of individual African Americans afford personalized ancestry reconstructions differentiating ancient vs. recent European and African ancestry. Finally, patterns of genetic similarity among inferred African segments of African-American genomes and genomes of contemporary African populations included in this study suggest African ancestry is most similar to non-Bantu Niger-Kordofanian-speaking populations, consistent with historical documents of the African Diaspora and trans-Atlantic slave trade. PMID:20080753

  19. Management and care of African dormice (Graphiurus kelleni).

    PubMed

    Kastenmayer, Robin J; Moak, Hannah B; Jeffress, Erin J; Elkins, William R

    2010-03-01

    African dormice (Graphiurus spp.) are small nocturnal rodents that currently are uncommon in laboratory settings. Their use may increase as they have recently been shown to develop an infection with monkeypox virus and may prove to be a valuable animal model for infectious disease research. Because African dormice are not commercially available, an extensive breeding colony is required to produce the animals needed for research use. Husbandry modifications that increased the production of offspring were the use of a high-protein diet, increased cage enrichment, and decreased animal density. To optimize consumption of a high-protein diet, we tested the palatability of several high-protein foods in a series of preference trials. Dormice preferred wax worm larva, cottage cheese, roasted soy nuts, and canned chicken. Issues related to medical management of Graphiurus kelleni include potential complications from traumatic injury. The development of a program for the husbandry and care of African dormice at our institution typifies the experiences of many laboratory animal facilities that are asked to support the development of animal models using novel species. PMID:20353691

  20. Regional Distribution Models with Lack of Proximate Predictors: Africanized Honeybees Expanding North

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jarnevich, Catherine S.; Esaias, Wayne E.; Ma, Peter L. A.; Morisette, Jeffery T.; Nickeson, Jaime E.; Stohlgren, Thomas J.; Holcombe, Tracy R.; Nightingale, Joanne M.; Wolfe, Robert E.; Tan, Bin

    2014-01-01

    Species distribution models have often been hampered by poor local species data, reliance on coarse-scale climate predictors and the assumption that species-environment relationships, even with non-proximate predictors, are consistent across geographical space. Yet locally accurate maps of invasive species, such as the Africanized honeybee (AHB) in North America, are needed to support conservation efforts. Current AHB range maps are relatively coarse and are inconsistent with observed data. Our aim was to improve distribution maps using more proximate predictors (phenology) and using regional models rather than one across the entire range of interest to explore potential differences in drivers.