Science.gov

Sample records for agriculturally important traits

  1. The angiosperm phloem sieve tube system: a role in mediating traits important to modern agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ham, Byung-Kook; Lucas, William J

    2014-04-01

    The plant vascular system serves a vital function by distributing water, nutrients and hormones essential for growth and development to the various organs of the plant. In this review, attention is focused on the role played by the phloem as the conduit for delivery of both photosynthate and information macromolecules, especially from the context of its mediation in traits that are important to modern agriculture. Resource allocation of sugars and amino acids, by the phloem, to specific sink tissues is of importance to crop yield and global food security. Current findings are discussed in the context of a hierarchical control network that operates to integrate resource allocation to competing sinks. The role of plasmodesmata that connect companion cells to neighbouring sieve elements and phloem parenchyma cells is evaluated in terms of their function as valves, connecting the sieve tube pressure manifold system to the various plant tissues. Recent studies have also revealed that plasmodesmata and the phloem sieve tube system function cooperatively to mediate the long-distance delivery of proteins and a diverse array of RNA species. Delivery of these information macromolecules is discussed in terms of their roles in control over the vegetative-to-floral transition, tuberization in potato, stress-related signalling involving miRNAs, and genetic reprogramming through the delivery of 24-nucleotide small RNAs that function in transcriptional gene silencing in recipient sink organs. Finally, we discuss important future research areas that could contribute to developing agricultural crops with engineered performance characteristics for enhance yield potential.

  2. Functional traits in agriculture: agrobiodiversity and ecosystem services.

    PubMed

    Wood, Stephen A; Karp, Daniel S; DeClerck, Fabrice; Kremen, Claire; Naeem, Shahid; Palm, Cheryl A

    2015-09-01

    Functional trait research has led to greater understanding of the impacts of biodiversity in ecosystems. Yet, functional trait approaches have not been widely applied to agroecosystems and understanding of the importance of agrobiodiversity remains limited to a few ecosystem processes and services. To improve this understanding, we argue here for a functional trait approach to agroecology that adopts recent advances in trait research for multitrophic and spatially heterogeneous ecosystems. We suggest that trait values should be measured across environmental conditions and agricultural management regimes to predict how ecosystem services vary with farm practices and environment. This knowledge should be used to develop management strategies that can be easily implemented by farmers to manage agriculture to provide multiple ecosystem services.

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  4. Economic importance of bats in agriculture

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2011-01-01

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

  5. Seed traits and genes important for translational biology--highlights from recent discoveries.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Andújar, Cristina; Martin, Ruth C; Nonogaki, Hiroyuki

    2012-01-01

    Seeds provide food, feed, fiber and fuel. They are also an important delivery system of genetic information, which is essential for the survival of wild species in ecosystems and the production of agricultural crops. In this review, seed traits and genes that are potentially important for agricultural applications are discussed. Over the long period of crop domestication, seed traits have been modified through intentional or unintentional selections. While most selections have led to seed traits favorable for agricultural consumption, such as larger seeds with higher nutritional value than the wild type, other manipulations in modern breeding sometimes led to negative traits, such as vivipary, precocious germination on the maternal plant or reduced seed vigor, as a side effect during the improvement of other characteristics. Greater effort is needed to overcome these problems that have emerged as a consequence of crop improvement. Seed biology researchers have characterized the function of many genes in the last decade, including those associated with seed domestication, which may be useful in addressing critical issues in modern agriculture, such as the prevention of vivipary and seed shattering or the enhancement of yields. Recent discoveries in seed biology research are highlighted in this review, with an emphasis on their potential for translational biology.

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

    PubMed

    Lange, Rense; Houran, James

    2009-04-01

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

  7. Biology: An Important Agricultural Engineering Mechanism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henderson, S. M.

    1974-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-10-01

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

  9. Mycotoxin contamination of commercially important agricultural commodities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  10. Development of cyanobacterium-based biofilms and their in vitro evaluation for agriculturally useful traits.

    PubMed

    Prasanna, R; Pattnaik, S; Sugitha, T C K; Nain, L; Saxena, A K

    2011-01-01

    The ability of cyanobacteria to be useful as matrices for agriculturally important bacteria was evaluated. Biofilms were generated with the selected strain Anabaena torulosa after co-culturing with Azotobacter chroococcum, Pseudomonas striata, Serratia marcescens, and Mesorhizobium ciceri. The biochemical attributes were compared with individual bacterial and cyanobacterial cultures. The biofilms were characterized in terms of proteins, chlorophyll, IAA production, acetylene-reducing activity, phosphate solubilization, and antagonism towards selected phytopathogenic fungi. An enhancement in the population counts was recorded in A. torulosa-S. marcescens and A. torulosa-P. striata biofilms. The A. torulosa-A. chroococcum and A. torulosa-M. ciceri biofilms were also able to utilize new saccharides as compared to the individual cultures. Such novel biofilms with agriculturally useful traits can provide additional advantages including the broader spectrum of activity and the presence or formation of biologically active compounds; they also suggest the way to effective inoculants for sustainable and environment friendly agriculture.

  11. Importance of species traits for species distribution in fragmented landscapes.

    PubMed

    Tremlová, Katerina; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2007-04-01

    Knowledge of the relationship between species traits and species distribution in fragmented landscapes is important for understanding current distribution patterns and as background information for predictive models of the effect of future landscape changes. The existing studies on the topic suffer from several drawbacks. First, they usually consider only traits related to dispersal ability and not growth. Furthermore, they do not apply phylogenetic corrections, and we thus do not know how considerations of phylogenetic relationships can alter the conclusions. Finally, they usually apply only one technique to calculate habitat isolation, and we do not know how other isolation measures would change the results. We studied the issues using 30 species forming congeneric pairs occurring in fragmented dry grasslands. We measured traits related to dispersal, survival, and growth in the species and recorded distribution of the species in 215 grassland fragments. We show many strong relationships between species traits related to both dispersal and growth and species distribution in the landscape, such as the positive relationship between habitat occupancy and anemochory and negative relationships between habitat occupancy and seed dormancy. The directions of these relationships, however, often change after application of phylogenetic correction. For example, more isolated habitats host species with smaller seeds. After phylogenetic correction, however, they turn out to host species with larger seeds. The conclusions also partly change depending on how we calculate habitat isolation. Specifically, habitat isolation calculated from occupied habitats only has the highest predictive power. This indicates slow dynamics of the species. All the results support the expectation that species traits have a high potential to explain patterns of species distribution in the landscape and that they can be used to build predictive models of species distribution. The specific conclusions

  12. Importance of energy balance in agriculture.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-04-01

    Since the beginning, man has tried to control nature and the environment, and the use of energy, mainly from non-renewable sources providing the necessary power for that. The consequences of this long fight against nature has reached a critical state of unprecedented worldwide environmental degradation, as evidenced by the increasing erosion of fertile lands, the deforestation processes, the pollution of water, air and land by agrochemicals, the loss of plant and animal species, the progressive deterioration of the ozone layer and signs of global warming. This is exacerbated by the increasing population growth, implying a steady increase in consumption, and consequently, in the use of energy. Unfortunately, all these claims are resulting in serious economic and environmental problems worldwide. Because the economic and environmental future of the countries is interrelated, it becomes necessary to adopt sustainable development models based on the use of renewable and clean energies, the search for alternative resources and the use of productive systems more efficient from an energy standpoint, always with a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In relation to the agricultural sector, the question we ask is: how long can we keep the current energy-intensive agricultural techniques in developed countries? To analyze this aspect, energy balance is a very helpful tool because can lead to more efficient, sustainable and environment-friendly production systems for each agro-climatic region. This requires the identification of all the inputs and the outputs involved and their conversion to energy values by means of corresponding energy coefficients or equivalents (International Federation of Institutes for Advanced Studies). Energy inputs (EI) can be divided in direct (energy directly used in farms as fuel, machines, fertilizers, seeds, herbicides, human labor, etc.) and indirect (energy not consumed in the farm but in the elaboration, manufacturing or manipulation of

  13. Multivariate identification of plant functional response and effect traits in an agricultural landscape.

    PubMed

    Pakeman, Robin J

    2011-06-01

    Plant functional traits have been proposed as a linkage between the environmental control of vegetation and ecosystem function. Identification of traits that mediate the response of plant species to the environment is well established, but the identification of effect traits and the linkage between the two sets is less developed. This was attempted for a study of eight contrasting land uses in a marginal agricultural landscape where data on vegetation, management controls of the disturbance regime, and soil characteristics, including nitrogen release, were measured simultaneously with measures of ecosystem function such as litter decomposition rates and primary productivity on 30 sites. Trait data were assembled from databases, and an iterative multivariate approach using the three table (species, trait, environment) method RLQ was employed to identify a parsimonious set of traits that predict plant species responses to the environment and a parsimonious set of traits that link vegetation to ecosystem function. The lists of response and effect traits were similar, and where differences were observed, traits were usually highly correlated with at least one trait in the other list. This approach identified a small number of traits (canopy height, leaf dry matter content, leaf size, and specific leaf area) that provide a means of linking vegetation responses to environmental change with changes in ecosystem function. Other response traits included vegetative spread strategy, start of flowering, and seed terminal velocity, but within the system studied these traits were all significantly correlated to the traits shared between the response and effect lists.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-04-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wheelus, Robin P.

    2009-01-01

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

  17. How to Tell How Important Agriculture Is to Your State.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schluter, Gerald; Edmondson, William

    1986-01-01

    Emphasizes agriculture's economic importance and lists the top 10 states according to 4 possible criteria for determining economic dependence on agriculture: number of food and fiber system jobs, number of farmworkers, proportion of food and fiber system jobs, and proportion of farmworkers to total food and fiber system jobs. (JHZ)

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heimgartner, Dale C.; Foster, Richard M.

    1981-01-01

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

  2. Animal trait ontology: The importance and usefulness of a unified trait vocabulary for animal species.

    PubMed

    Hughes, L M; Bao, J; Hu, Z-L; Honavar, V; Reecy, J M

    2008-06-01

    Ontologies help to identify and formally define the entities and relationships in specific domains of interest. Bio-ontologies, in particular, play a central role in the annotation, integration, analysis, and interpretation of biological data. Missing from the number of bio-ontologies is one that includes phenotypic trait information found in livestock species. As a result, the Animal Trait Ontology (ATO) project being carried out under the auspices of the USDA-National Animal Genome Research Program is aimed at the development of a standardized trait ontology for farm animals and software tools to assist the research community in collaborative creation, editing, maintenance, and use of such an ontology. The ATO is currently inclusive of cattle, pig, and chicken species, and will include other livestock species in the future. The ATO will eventually be linked to other species (e.g., human, rat, mouse) so that comparative analysis can be efficiently performed between species. PMID:18272850

  3. Genome Wide Single Locus Single Trait, Multi-Locus and Multi-Trait Association Mapping for Some Important Agronomic Traits in Common Wheat (T. aestivum L.)

    PubMed Central

    Jaiswal, Vandana; Gahlaut, Vijay; Meher, Prabina Kumar; Mir, Reyazul Rouf; Jaiswal, Jai Prakash; Rao, Atmakuri Ramakrishna; Balyan, Harindra Singh; Gupta, Pushpendra Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Genome wide association study (GWAS) was conducted for 14 agronomic traits in wheat following widely used single locus single trait (SLST) approach, and two recent approaches viz. multi locus mixed model (MLMM), and multi-trait mixed model (MTMM). Association panel consisted of 230 diverse Indian bread wheat cultivars (released during 1910–2006 for commercial cultivation in different agro-climatic regions in India). Three years phenotypic data for 14 traits and genotyping data for 250 SSR markers (distributed across all the 21 wheat chromosomes) was utilized for GWAS. Using SLST, as many as 213 MTAs (p ≤ 0.05, 129 SSRs) were identified for 14 traits, however, only 10 MTAs (~9%; 10 out of 123 MTAs) qualified FDR criteria; these MTAs did not show any linkage drag. Interestingly, these genomic regions were coincident with the genomic regions that were already known to harbor QTLs for same or related agronomic traits. Using MLMM and MTMM, many more QTLs and markers were identified; 22 MTAs (19 QTLs, 21 markers) using MLMM, and 58 MTAs (29 QTLs, 40 markers) using MTMM were identified. In addition, 63 epistatic QTLs were also identified for 13 of the 14 traits, flag leaf length (FLL) being the only exception. Clearly, the power of association mapping improved due to MLMM and MTMM analyses. The epistatic interactions detected during the present study also provided better insight into genetic architecture of the 14 traits that were examined during the present study. Following eight wheat genotypes carried desirable alleles of QTLs for one or more traits, WH542, NI345, NI170, Sharbati Sonora, A90, HW1085, HYB11, and DWR39 (Pragati). These genotypes and the markers associated with important QTLs for major traits can be used in wheat improvement programs either using marker-assisted recurrent selection (MARS) or pseudo-backcrossing method. PMID:27441835

  4. Genome Wide Single Locus Single Trait, Multi-Locus and Multi-Trait Association Mapping for Some Important Agronomic Traits in Common Wheat (T. aestivum L.).

    PubMed

    Jaiswal, Vandana; Gahlaut, Vijay; Meher, Prabina Kumar; Mir, Reyazul Rouf; Jaiswal, Jai Prakash; Rao, Atmakuri Ramakrishna; Balyan, Harindra Singh; Gupta, Pushpendra Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Genome wide association study (GWAS) was conducted for 14 agronomic traits in wheat following widely used single locus single trait (SLST) approach, and two recent approaches viz. multi locus mixed model (MLMM), and multi-trait mixed model (MTMM). Association panel consisted of 230 diverse Indian bread wheat cultivars (released during 1910-2006 for commercial cultivation in different agro-climatic regions in India). Three years phenotypic data for 14 traits and genotyping data for 250 SSR markers (distributed across all the 21 wheat chromosomes) was utilized for GWAS. Using SLST, as many as 213 MTAs (p ≤ 0.05, 129 SSRs) were identified for 14 traits, however, only 10 MTAs (~9%; 10 out of 123 MTAs) qualified FDR criteria; these MTAs did not show any linkage drag. Interestingly, these genomic regions were coincident with the genomic regions that were already known to harbor QTLs for same or related agronomic traits. Using MLMM and MTMM, many more QTLs and markers were identified; 22 MTAs (19 QTLs, 21 markers) using MLMM, and 58 MTAs (29 QTLs, 40 markers) using MTMM were identified. In addition, 63 epistatic QTLs were also identified for 13 of the 14 traits, flag leaf length (FLL) being the only exception. Clearly, the power of association mapping improved due to MLMM and MTMM analyses. The epistatic interactions detected during the present study also provided better insight into genetic architecture of the 14 traits that were examined during the present study. Following eight wheat genotypes carried desirable alleles of QTLs for one or more traits, WH542, NI345, NI170, Sharbati Sonora, A90, HW1085, HYB11, and DWR39 (Pragati). These genotypes and the markers associated with important QTLs for major traits can be used in wheat improvement programs either using marker-assisted recurrent selection (MARS) or pseudo-backcrossing method. PMID:27441835

  5. Genome Wide Single Locus Single Trait, Multi-Locus and Multi-Trait Association Mapping for Some Important Agronomic Traits in Common Wheat (T. aestivum L.).

    PubMed

    Jaiswal, Vandana; Gahlaut, Vijay; Meher, Prabina Kumar; Mir, Reyazul Rouf; Jaiswal, Jai Prakash; Rao, Atmakuri Ramakrishna; Balyan, Harindra Singh; Gupta, Pushpendra Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Genome wide association study (GWAS) was conducted for 14 agronomic traits in wheat following widely used single locus single trait (SLST) approach, and two recent approaches viz. multi locus mixed model (MLMM), and multi-trait mixed model (MTMM). Association panel consisted of 230 diverse Indian bread wheat cultivars (released during 1910-2006 for commercial cultivation in different agro-climatic regions in India). Three years phenotypic data for 14 traits and genotyping data for 250 SSR markers (distributed across all the 21 wheat chromosomes) was utilized for GWAS. Using SLST, as many as 213 MTAs (p ≤ 0.05, 129 SSRs) were identified for 14 traits, however, only 10 MTAs (~9%; 10 out of 123 MTAs) qualified FDR criteria; these MTAs did not show any linkage drag. Interestingly, these genomic regions were coincident with the genomic regions that were already known to harbor QTLs for same or related agronomic traits. Using MLMM and MTMM, many more QTLs and markers were identified; 22 MTAs (19 QTLs, 21 markers) using MLMM, and 58 MTAs (29 QTLs, 40 markers) using MTMM were identified. In addition, 63 epistatic QTLs were also identified for 13 of the 14 traits, flag leaf length (FLL) being the only exception. Clearly, the power of association mapping improved due to MLMM and MTMM analyses. The epistatic interactions detected during the present study also provided better insight into genetic architecture of the 14 traits that were examined during the present study. Following eight wheat genotypes carried desirable alleles of QTLs for one or more traits, WH542, NI345, NI170, Sharbati Sonora, A90, HW1085, HYB11, and DWR39 (Pragati). These genotypes and the markers associated with important QTLs for major traits can be used in wheat improvement programs either using marker-assisted recurrent selection (MARS) or pseudo-backcrossing method.

  6. Importance of respiratory exposure to pesticides among agricultural populations.

    PubMed

    Dowling, Kathryn C; Seiber, James N

    2002-01-01

    In the majority of cases, respiratory exposure accounts for a small fraction of total body exposure to pesticides; however, higher volatility pesticides pose a greater risk for exposure, particularly in enclosed spaces and near application sites. In 2000, nearly 22 million pounds of active ingredients designated as toxic air contaminants (TACs) were applied as pesticides in California (combined agricultural and reportable non-agricultural uses; California Department of Pesticide Regulation, 2001a, Summary of Pesticide Use Report Data, 2000, Sacramento, CA: author). Agricultural workers and agricultural community residents are at particular risk for exposure to these compounds. The TAC program in California, and more recently the federal Clean Air Act amendments, have begun to address the exposures of these groups and have promulgated exposure guidelines that are, in general, much more stringent than the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) worker exposure guidelines. Choosing lower volatility pesticides, lower concentrations of active ingredients, and handling equipment designed to minimize exposure can often reduce worker respiratory exposures significantly. The use of personal protective equipment, which would be facilitated by the development of more ergonomic alternatives, is important in these higher respiratory exposure situations. Finally, in the case of community residents, measures taken to protect workers often translate to lower ambient air concentrations, but further study and development of buffer zones and application controls in a given area are necessary to assure community protection.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-01

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

  9. Inbreeding depression for economically important traits of Mazandaran native fowls.

    PubMed

    Rahmanian, A; Hafezian, H; Rahimi, G H; Farhadi, A; Baneh, H

    2015-01-01

    1. The objective was to investigate inbreeding depression for some economic traits of Mazandaran native fowls using data collected from 1992 to 2012 (21 generations) using a REML 2. The mean inbreeding coefficient (F) for the whole population and dams was 4.67% and 4.12%, respectively, and most of the inbred birds (75.79%) and inbred dams (72.58%) had F < 12.5%. 3. Individual and dam inbreeding trends were 0.55% and 0.53% per year. 4. Inbreeding depression for body weight at hatch, at 8 weeks and 12 weeks of age, age at sexual maturity, weight at sexual maturity, egg weight at 1st d of laying and average egg weight at 28, 30 and 32 weeks of laying due to a 1% increase in individual inbreeding were -0.11 g, -3.1 g, -1.3 g, 0.15 d, 0.59 g, -0.05 g and -0.03 g, respectively. 5. A 1% increase in maternal inbreeding resulted in a reduction of 0.06, 0.6 and 3.6 g in body weight at hatch, 8 weeks and 12 weeks of age.

  10. The Importance of Juvenile Root Traits for Crop Yields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-05-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-01

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

  15. Biodiversity of Aspergillus species in some important agricultural products

    PubMed Central

    Perrone, G.; Susca, A.; Cozzi, G.; Ehrlich, K.; Varga, J.; Frisvad, J.C.; Meijer, M.; Noonim, P.; Mahakarnchanakul, W.; Samson, R.A.

    2007-01-01

    The genus Aspergillus is one of the most important filamentous fungal genera. Aspergillus species are used in the fermentation industry, but they are also responsible of various plant and food secondary rot, with the consequence of possible accumulation of mycotoxins. The aflatoxin producing A. flavus and A. parasiticus, and ochratoxinogenic A. niger, A. ochraceus and A. carbonarius species are frequently encountered in agricultural products. Studies on the biodiversity of toxigenic Aspergillus species is useful to clarify molecular, ecological and biochemical characteristics of the different species in relation to their different adaptation to environmental and geographical conditions, and to their potential toxigenicity. Here we analyzed the biodiversity of ochratoxin producing species occurring on two important crops: grapes and coffee, and the genetic diversity of A. flavus populations occurring in agricultural fields. Altogether nine different black Aspergillus species can be found on grapes which are often difficult to identify with classical methods. The polyphasic approach used in our studies led to the identification of three new species occurring on grapes: A. brasiliensis, A. ibericus, and A. uvarum. Similar studies on the Aspergillus species occurring on coffee beans have evidenced in the last five years that A. carbonarius is an important source of ochratoxin A in coffee. Four new species within the black aspergilli were also identified in coffee beans: A. sclerotioniger, A. lacticoffeatus, A. sclerotiicarbonarius, and A. aculeatinus. The genetic diversity within A. flavus populations has been widely studied in relation to their potential aflatoxigenicity and morphological variants L- and S-strains. Within A. flavus and other Aspergillus species capable of aflatoxin production, considerable diversity is found. We summarise the main recent achievements in the diversity of the aflatoxin gene cluster in A. flavus populations, A. parasiticus and the non

  16. Major quality trait analysis and QTL detection in hexaploid wheat in humid rain-fed agriculture.

    PubMed

    Li, H M; Tang, Z X; Zhang, H Q; Yan, B J; Ren, Z L

    2013-05-21

    Humid rain-fed agriculture is a special environment for wheat (Triticum aestivum) culture that tends to negatively affect wheat yield and quality. To identify quality characters of wheat in a humid environment, we conducted quality analysis and quantitative trait loci (QTL) detection in a recombinant inbred line whose parent had a high level of quality for several years. We found that high-quality wheat had less gluten content and lower protein content. Apparently, wheat quality and associated quantity traits were in a dynamic state of equilibrium. We detected 83 QTL for 10 wheat quality traits in this recombinant inbred line population. Nine QTL were detected in both evaluation years; Q.DT.scau-2A, linked to Xwmc522-2A, was detected at the same genetic location in both years. Other QTL for different traits were detected simultaneously in more than one location. Consequently, there appeared to be pleiotropic genes that control wheat quality. Based on previous studies and our research on QTL analysis of grain protein content, we conclude that there must be one or more genes for grain protein content on chromosome 6B, whose expression was little affected by environment. We constructed a consensus map and projected the QTL on it. It was useful for choosing optimal markers for marker-assisted breeding and map-based cloning.

  17. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  18. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton and Covers Miscellaneous Provisions §...

  19. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

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

    SciTech Connect

    Poteat, Monica D.; Buchwalter, David B.; Jacobus, Luke M.

    2015-04-08

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

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

    DOE PAGES

    Poteat, Monica D.; Buchwalter, David B.; Jacobus, Luke M.

    2015-04-08

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2007-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  8. The soil microbial community predicts the importance of plant traits in plant-soil feedback.

    PubMed

    Ke, Po-Ju; Miki, Takeshi; Ding, Tzung-Su

    2015-04-01

    Reciprocal interaction between plant and soil (plant-soil feedback, PSF) can determine plant community structure. Understanding which traits control interspecific variation of PSF strength is crucial for plant ecology. Studies have highlighted either plant-mediated nutrient cycling (litter-mediated PSF) or plant-microbe interaction (microbial-mediated PSF) as important PSF mechanisms, each attributing PSF variation to different traits. However, this separation neglects the complex indirect interactions between the two mechanisms. We developed a model coupling litter- and microbial-mediated PSFs to identify the relative importance of traits in controlling PSF strength, and its dependency on the composition of root-associated microbes (i.e. pathogens and/or mycorrhizal fungi). Results showed that although plant carbon: nitrogen (C : N) ratio and microbial nutrient acquisition traits were consistently important, the importance of litter decomposability varied. Litter decomposability was not a major PSF determinant when pathogens are present. However, its importance increased with the relative abundance of mycorrhizal fungi as nutrient released from the mycorrhizal-enhanced litter production to the nutrient-depleted soils result in synergistic increase of soil nutrient and mycorrhizal abundance. Data compiled from empirical studies also supported our predictions. We propose that the importance of litter decomposability depends on the composition of root-associated microbes. Our results provide new perspectives in plant invasion and trait-based ecology.

  9. Few crop traits accurately predict variables important to productivity of processing sweet corn

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recovery, case production, and gross profit margin, hereafter called ‘processor variables’, are as important metrics to processing sweet corn as grain yield is to field corn production. However, crop traits such as ear number or ear mass alone are reported in sweet corn production research rather t...

  10. Importation route of the sickle cell trait into Portugal: contribution of molecular epidemiology.

    PubMed

    Lavinha, J; Gonçalves, J; Faustino, P; Romão, L; Osório-Almeida, L; Peres, M J; Picanço, I; Martins, M C; Ducrocq, R; Labie, D

    1992-12-01

    To elucidate the origin and spread of the sickle cell trait into the Portuguese population, we examined nine polymorphic DNA markers within the beta globin gene cluster defining the haplotype. The population sample included 64 sickle-cell-gene-bearing individuals from defined Portuguese-speaking white, black, and Asian Indian populations. The nature and geographic distribution of the different beta S haplotypes in Portugal suggest that the sickle cell trait has been imported twice: between the eighth and the thirteenth centuries from the Mediterranean basin (in association with the Benin haplotype) and after the fifteenth century from black Africa over an Atlantic route (Senegal and Bantu haplotypes).

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

    PubMed

    Reynolds, R Graham; Fitzpatrick, Benjamin M

    2007-09-01

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

  12. Biodiversity of Aspergillus Species in Some Important Agricultural Products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  13. Investigating the beneficial traits of Trichoderma hamatum GD12 for sustainable agriculture-insights from genomics.

    PubMed

    Studholme, David J; Harris, Beverley; Le Cocq, Kate; Winsbury, Rebecca; Perera, Venura; Ryder, Lauren; Ward, Jane L; Beale, Michael H; Thornton, Chris R; Grant, Murray

    2013-01-01

    Trichoderma hamatum strain GD12 is unique in that it can promote plant growth, activate biocontrol against pre- and post-emergence soil pathogens and can induce systemic resistance to foliar pathogens. This study extends previous work in lettuce to demonstrate that GD12 can confer beneficial agronomic traits to other plants, providing examples of plant growth promotion in the model dicot, Arabidopsis thaliana and induced foliar resistance to Magnaporthe oryzae in the model monocot rice. We further characterize the lettuce-T. hamatum interaction to show that bran extracts from GD12 and an N-acetyl-β-D-glucosamindase-deficient mutant differentially promote growth in a concentration dependent manner, and these differences correlate with differences in the small molecule secretome. We show that GD12 mycoparasitises a range of isolates of the pre-emergence soil pathogen Sclerotinia sclerotiorum and that this interaction induces a further increase in plant growth promotion above that conferred by GD12. To understand the genetic potential encoded by T. hamatum GD12 and to facilitate its use as a model beneficial organism to study plant growth promotion, induced systemic resistance and mycoparasitism we present de novo genome sequence data. We compare GD12 with other published Trichoderma genomes and show that T. hamatum GD12 contains unique genomic regions with the potential to encode novel bioactive metabolites that may contribute to GD12's agrochemically important traits.

  14. Associated effects of copy number variants on economically important traits in Spanish Holstein dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    Ben Sassi, Neila; González-Recio, Óscar; de Paz-Del Río, Raquel; Rodríguez-Ramilo, Silvia T; Fernández, Ana I

    2016-08-01

    Copy number variants (CNV) are structural variants consisting of duplications or deletions of genomic fragments longer than 1 kb that present variability in the population and are heritable. The objective of this study was to identify CNV regions (CNVR) associated with 7 economically important traits (production, functional, and type traits) in Holstein cattle: fat yield, protein yield, somatic cell count, days open, stature, foot angle, and udder depth. Copy number variants were detected by using deep-sequencing data from 10 sequenced bulls and the Bovine SNP chip array hybridization signals. To reduce the number of false-positive calls, only CNV identified by both sequencing and Bovine SNP chip assays were kept in the final data set. This resulted in 823 CNVR. After filtering by minor allele frequency >0.01, a total of 90 CNVR appeared segregating in the bulls that had phenotypic data. Linear and quadratic CNVR effects were estimated using Bayesian approaches. A total of 15 CNVR were associated with the traits included in the analysis. One CNVR was associated with fat and protein yield, another 1 with fat yield, 3 with stature, 1 with foot angle, 7 with udder depth, and only 1 with days open. Among the genes located within these regions, highlighted were the MTHFSD gene that belongs to the folate metabolism genes, which play critical roles in regulating milk protein synthesis; the SNRPE gene that is related to several morphological pathologies; and the NF1 gene, which is associated with potential effects on fertility traits. The results obtained in the current study revealed that these CNVR segregate in the Holstein population, and therefore some potential exists to increase the frequencies of the favorable alleles in the population after independent validation of results in this study. However, genetic variance explained by the variants reported in this study was small. PMID:27209136

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-09-14

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Genetic and genomic analyses for economically important traits and their applications in molecular breeding of cultured fish.

    PubMed

    Tong, JinGou; Sun, XiaoWen

    2015-02-01

    The traits of cultured fish must continually be genetically improved to supply high-quality animal protein for human consumption. Economically important fish traits are controlled by multiple gene quantitative trait loci (QTL), most of which have minor effects, but a few genes may have major effects useful for molecular breeding. In this review, we chose relevant studies on some of the most intensively cultured fish and concisely summarize progress on identifying and verifying QTLs for such traits as growth, disease and stress resistance and sex in recent decades. The potential applications of these major-effect genes and their associated markers in marker-assisted selection and molecular breeding, as well as future research directions are also discussed. These genetic and genomic analyses will be valuable for elucidating the mechanisms modulating economically important traits and to establish more effective molecular breeding techniques in fish.

  18. Habitat effects on the relative importance of trait- and density-mediated indirect interactions.

    PubMed

    Trussell, Geoffrey C; Ewanchuk, Patrick J; Matassa, Catherine M

    2006-11-01

    Classical views of trophic cascades emphasize the primacy of consumptive predator effects on prey populations to the transmission of indirect effects [density-mediated indirect interactions (DMIIs)]. However, trophic cascades can also emerge without changes in the density of interacting species because of non-consumptive predator effects on prey traits such as foraging behaviour [trait-mediated indirect interactions (TMIIs)]. Although ecologists appreciate this point, measurements of the relative importance of each indirect predator effect are rare. Experiments with a three-level, rocky shore food chain containing an invasive predatory crab (Carcinus maenas), an intermediate consumer (the snail, Nucella lapillus) and a basal resource (the barnacle, Semibalanus balanoides) revealed that the strength of TMIIs is comparable with, or exceeds, that of DMIIs. Moreover, the sign and strength of each indirect predator effect depends on whether it is measured in risky or refuge habitats. Because habitat shifts are often responsible for the emergence of TMIIs, attention to the sign and strength of these interactions in both habitats will improve our understanding of the link between individual behaviour and community dynamics.

  19. Habitat effects on the relative importance of trait- and density-mediated indirect interactions.

    PubMed

    Trussell, Geoffrey C; Ewanchuk, Patrick J; Matassa, Catherine M

    2006-11-01

    Classical views of trophic cascades emphasize the primacy of consumptive predator effects on prey populations to the transmission of indirect effects [density-mediated indirect interactions (DMIIs)]. However, trophic cascades can also emerge without changes in the density of interacting species because of non-consumptive predator effects on prey traits such as foraging behaviour [trait-mediated indirect interactions (TMIIs)]. Although ecologists appreciate this point, measurements of the relative importance of each indirect predator effect are rare. Experiments with a three-level, rocky shore food chain containing an invasive predatory crab (Carcinus maenas), an intermediate consumer (the snail, Nucella lapillus) and a basal resource (the barnacle, Semibalanus balanoides) revealed that the strength of TMIIs is comparable with, or exceeds, that of DMIIs. Moreover, the sign and strength of each indirect predator effect depends on whether it is measured in risky or refuge habitats. Because habitat shifts are often responsible for the emergence of TMIIs, attention to the sign and strength of these interactions in both habitats will improve our understanding of the link between individual behaviour and community dynamics. PMID:17040327

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2012-01-01

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

  1. Are Photosynthetic Characteristics and Energetic Cost Important Invasive Traits for Alien Sonneratia Species in South China?

    PubMed

    Li, Feng-Lan; Zan, Qi-Jie; Hu, Zheng-Yu; Shin, Paul-K S; Cheung, Siu-Gin; Wong, Yuk-Shan; Tam, Nora Fung-Yee; Lei, An-Ping

    2016-01-01

    A higher photosynthesis and lower energetic cost are recognized as important characteristics for invasive species, but whether these traits are also important for the ability of alien mangrove species to become invasive has seldom been reported. A microcosm study was conducted to compare the photosynthetic characteristics, energetic cost indices and other growth traits between two alien species (Sonneratia apetala and S. caseolaris) and four native mangrove species over four seasons in a subtropical mangrove nature reserve in Shenzhen, South China. The aim of the study was to evaluate the invasive potential of Sonneratia based on these physiological responses. The annual average net photosynthetic rate (Pn), stomatal conductance (Gs) and total carbon assimilation per unit leaf area (Atotal) of the two alien Sonneratia species were significantly higher than the values of the native mangroves. In contrast, the opposite results were obtained for the leaf construction cost (CC) per unit dry mass (CCM) and CC per unit area (CCA) values. The higher Atotal and lower CC values resulted in a 72% higher photosynthetic energy-use efficiency (PEUE) for Sonneratia compared to native mangroves, leading to a higher relative growth rate (RGR) of the biomass and height of Sonneratia with the respective values being 51% and 119% higher than those of the native species. Higher photosynthetic indices for Sonneratia compared to native species were found in all seasons except winter, whereas lower CC values were found in all four seasons. The present findings reveal that alien Sonneratia species may adapt well and become invasive in subtropical mangrove wetlands in Shenzhen due to their higher photosynthetic characteristics coupled with lower costs in energy use, leading to a higher PEUE. The comparison of these physiological responses between S. apetala and S. caseolaris reveal that the former species is more invasive than the latter one, thus requiring more attention in future.

  2. Are Photosynthetic Characteristics and Energetic Cost Important Invasive Traits for Alien Sonneratia Species in South China?

    PubMed Central

    Li, Feng-Lan; Zan, Qi-Jie; Hu, Zheng-Yu; Shin, Paul-K. S.; Cheung, Siu-Gin; Wong, Yuk-Shan; Tam, Nora Fung-Yee; Lei, An-Ping

    2016-01-01

    A higher photosynthesis and lower energetic cost are recognized as important characteristics for invasive species, but whether these traits are also important for the ability of alien mangrove species to become invasive has seldom been reported. A microcosm study was conducted to compare the photosynthetic characteristics, energetic cost indices and other growth traits between two alien species (Sonneratia apetala and S. caseolaris) and four native mangrove species over four seasons in a subtropical mangrove nature reserve in Shenzhen, South China. The aim of the study was to evaluate the invasive potential of Sonneratia based on these physiological responses. The annual average net photosynthetic rate (Pn), stomatal conductance (Gs) and total carbon assimilation per unit leaf area (Atotal) of the two alien Sonneratia species were significantly higher than the values of the native mangroves. In contrast, the opposite results were obtained for the leaf construction cost (CC) per unit dry mass (CCM) and CC per unit area (CCA) values. The higher Atotal and lower CC values resulted in a 72% higher photosynthetic energy-use efficiency (PEUE) for Sonneratia compared to native mangroves, leading to a higher relative growth rate (RGR) of the biomass and height of Sonneratia with the respective values being 51% and 119% higher than those of the native species. Higher photosynthetic indices for Sonneratia compared to native species were found in all seasons except winter, whereas lower CC values were found in all four seasons. The present findings reveal that alien Sonneratia species may adapt well and become invasive in subtropical mangrove wetlands in Shenzhen due to their higher photosynthetic characteristics coupled with lower costs in energy use, leading to a higher PEUE. The comparison of these physiological responses between S. apetala and S. caseolaris reveal that the former species is more invasive than the latter one, thus requiring more attention in future. PMID

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-04-01

    ,1050) = 18, P < 0.0001). In both CT and PN, the birth weight, body temperature 2 h after birth, and birth process were important traits related to crushing, starvation, and disease. Neither housing nor breeding value influenced mortality or traits of importance for the inborn viability of piglets. The results emphasize that the microclimate in the PN for newborn piglets and its heat-preserving properties are more important for survival than whether the sow is crated or penned.

  4. Selection index based on the relative importance of traits and possibilities in breeding popcorn.

    PubMed

    Vieira, R A; Rocha, R; Scapim, C A; Amaral Júnior, A T; Vivas, M

    2016-01-01

    One of the major difficulties faced by popcorn breeders is the negative correlation between popping expansion (PE) and grain yield (GY). It is necessary to overcome this difficulty to obtain promising genotypes. One helpful tool in this process is a selection index because it allows multiple features of interest to be selected. Thus, the present study proposes a new and comprehensive selection index applied in 169 half-sib families in UEM-Co1 and UEM-Co2 composites during two cycles of recurrent selection. An experiment was conducted in a 13 x 13 lattice square in the 2004/2005 and 2006/2007 crop years in Maringá, Paraná State, and PE and GY were evaluated. To calculate Fi statistics, the following relative importance (RI) assignments were used: 0.5 for both PE and GY, and 0.70 and 0.30 for PE and GY, respectively. Families were classified according to Fi values such that Fi = 0 indicated that genotypes met the average of those selected by direct selection, Fi < 0 indicated that genotypes fell below the average of those selected, and Fi > 0 indicated that genotypes exceeded the average of those selected. Thus, desirable values of Fi were positive, indicating that the selected families were higher than those families that would be selected by direct selection for both traits. Therefore, we concluded that the novel Fi statistic was satisfactory for family selection because simultaneous and higher gains for both traits in both composites were obtained. PMID:27173260

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2009-07-29

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  10. Construction of a genetic linkage map and analysis of quantitative trait loci associated with the agronomically important traits of Pleurotus eryngii.

    PubMed

    Im, Chak Han; Park, Young-Hoon; Hammel, Kenneth E; Park, Bokyung; Kwon, Soon Wook; Ryu, Hojin; Ryu, Jae-San

    2016-07-01

    Breeding new strains with improved traits is a long-standing goal of mushroom breeders that can be expedited by marker-assisted selection (MAS). We constructed a genetic linkage map of Pleurotus eryngii based on segregation analysis of markers in postmeiotic monokaryons from KNR2312. In total, 256 loci comprising 226 simple sequence-repeat (SSR) markers, 2 mating-type factors, and 28 insertion/deletion (InDel) markers were mapped. The map consisted of 12 linkage groups (LGs) spanning 1047.8cM, with an average interval length of 4.09cM. Four independent populations (Pd3, Pd8, Pd14, and Pd15) derived from crossing between four monokaryons from KNR2532 as a tester strain and 98 monokaryons from KNR2312 were used to characterize quantitative trait loci (QTL) for nine traits such as yield, quality, cap color, and earliness. Using composite interval mapping (CIM), 71 QTLs explaining between 5.82% and 33.17% of the phenotypic variations were identified. Clusters of more than five QTLs for various traits were identified in three genomic regions, on LGs 1, 7 and 9. Regardless of the population, 6 of the 9 traits studied and 18 of the 71 QTLs found in this study were identified in the largest cluster, LG1, in the range from 65.4 to 110.4cM. The candidate genes for yield encoding transcription factor, signal transduction, mycelial growth and hydrolase are suggested by using manual and computational analysis of genome sequence corresponding to QTL region with the highest likelihood odds (LOD) for yield. The genetic map and the QTLs established in this study will help breeders and geneticists to develop selection markers for agronomically important characteristics of mushrooms and to identify the corresponding genes. PMID:27166667

  11. The relative importance of trait vs. genetic differentiation for the outcome of interactions among plant genotypes.

    PubMed

    Abbott, Jessica M; Stachowicz, John J

    2016-01-01

    Functional trait differences and genetic distance are increasingly used as metrics to predict the. outcome of species interactions and the maintenance of diversity. We apply these ideas to intraspecific diversity for the seagrass Zostera marina (eelgrass), by explicitly testing the influence of trait distance and genetic relatedness on the outcome of pairwise interactions among eelgrass genotypes. Increasing trait distance (but not relatedness) between eelgrass genotypes decreased the likelihood that both would persist over a year-long field experiment, contrary to our expectations based on niche partitioning. In plots in which one genotype excluded another, the biomass and growth of the remaining genotype increased with the trait distance and genetic relatedness of the initial pair, presumably due to a legacy of past interactions. Together these results suggest that sustained competition among functionally similar genotypes did not produce a clear winner, but rapid exclusion occurred among genotypes with distinct trait combinations. Borrowing from coexistence theory, we argue that fitness differences between genotypes with distinct traits overwhelmed any stabilizing effects of niche differentiation. Previously observed effects of eelgrass genetic diversity on performance may rely on nonadditive interactions among multiple genotypes or sufficient environmental heterogeneity to increase stabilizing forces and/or interactions. PMID:27008778

  12. The relative importance of trait vs. genetic differentiation for the outcome of interactions among plant genotypes.

    PubMed

    Abbott, Jessica M; Stachowicz, John J

    2016-01-01

    Functional trait differences and genetic distance are increasingly used as metrics to predict the. outcome of species interactions and the maintenance of diversity. We apply these ideas to intraspecific diversity for the seagrass Zostera marina (eelgrass), by explicitly testing the influence of trait distance and genetic relatedness on the outcome of pairwise interactions among eelgrass genotypes. Increasing trait distance (but not relatedness) between eelgrass genotypes decreased the likelihood that both would persist over a year-long field experiment, contrary to our expectations based on niche partitioning. In plots in which one genotype excluded another, the biomass and growth of the remaining genotype increased with the trait distance and genetic relatedness of the initial pair, presumably due to a legacy of past interactions. Together these results suggest that sustained competition among functionally similar genotypes did not produce a clear winner, but rapid exclusion occurred among genotypes with distinct trait combinations. Borrowing from coexistence theory, we argue that fitness differences between genotypes with distinct traits overwhelmed any stabilizing effects of niche differentiation. Previously observed effects of eelgrass genetic diversity on performance may rely on nonadditive interactions among multiple genotypes or sufficient environmental heterogeneity to increase stabilizing forces and/or interactions.

  13. Estimating the Importance of Private Adaptation to Climate Change in Agriculture: A Review of Empirical Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, F.; Burke, M.

    2015-12-01

    A wide range of studies using a variety of methods strongly suggest that climate change will have a negative impact on agricultural production in many areas. Farmers though should be able to learn about a changing climate and to adjust what they grow and how they grow it in order to reduce these negative impacts. However, it remains unclear how effective these private (autonomous) adaptations will be, or how quickly they will be adopted. Constraining the uncertainty on this adaptation is important for understanding the impacts of climate change on agriculture. Here we review a number of empirical methods that have been proposed for understanding the rate and effectiveness of private adaptation to climate change. We compare these methods using data on agricultural yields in the United States and western Europe.

  14. Laboratory tests to assess optimal agricultural residue traits for an abrasive weed control system

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    One of the biggest challenges to organic agricultural production and herbicide resistant crops in industrialized countries today is the non-chemical control of weed plants. Studies of new tools and methods for weed control have been motivated by an increased consumer demand for organic produce and c...

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frick, Paul J.; White, Stuart F.

    2008-01-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2011-01-01

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

  18. Salt effects on functional traits in model and in economically important Lotus species.

    PubMed

    Uchiya, P; Escaray, F J; Bilenca, D; Pieckenstain, F; Ruiz, O A; Menéndez, A B

    2016-07-01

    A common stress on plants is NaCl-derived soil salinity. Genus Lotus comprises model and economically important species, which have been studied regarding physiological responses to salinity. Leaf area ratio (LAR), root length ratio (RLR) and their components, specific leaf area (SLA) and leaf mass fraction (LMF) and specific root length (SRL) and root mass fraction (RMF) might be affected by high soil salinity. We characterised L. tenuis, L. corniculatus, L. filicaulis, L. creticus, L. burtii and L. japonicus grown under different salt concentrations (0, 50, 100 and 150 mm NaCl) on the basis of SLA, LMF, SRL and RMF using PCA. We also assessed effects of different salt concentrations on LAR and RLR in each species, and explored whether changes in these traits provide fitness benefit. Salinity (150 mm NaCl) increased LAR in L. burtii and L. corniculatus, but not in the remaining species. The highest salt concentration caused a decrease of RLR in L. japonicus Gifu, but not in the remaining species. Changes in LAR and RLR would not be adaptive, according to adaptiveness analysis, with the exception of SLA changes in L. corniculatus. PCA revealed that under favourable conditions plants optimise surfaces for light and nutrient acquisition (SLA and SRL), whereas at higher salt concentrations they favour carbon allocation to leaves and roots (LMF and RMF) in detriment to their surfaces. PCA also showed that L. creticus subjected to saline treatment was distinguished from the remaining Lotus species. We suggest that augmented carbon partitioning to leaves and roots could constitute a salt-alleviating mechanism through toxic ion dilution. PMID:27007305

  19. The importance of aboveground–belowground interactions on the evolution and maintenance of variation in plant defense traits

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  20. Identification of agronomically important QTL in tetraploid potato cultivars using a marker-trait association analysis.

    PubMed

    D'hoop, Björn B; Keizer, Paul L C; Paulo, M João; Visser, Richard G F; van Eeuwijk, Fred A; van Eck, Herman J

    2014-03-01

    Nineteen tuber quality traits in potato were phenotyped in 205 cultivars and 299 breeder clones. Association analysis using 3364 AFLP loci and 653 SSR-alleles identified QTL for these traits. Two association mapping panels were analysed for marker-trait associations to identify quantitative trait loci (QTL). The first panel comprised 205 historical and contemporary tetraploid potato cultivars that were phenotyped in field trials at two locations with two replicates (the academic panel). The second panel consisted of 299 potato cultivars and included recent breeds obtained from five Dutch potato breeding companies and reference cultivars (the industrial panel). Phenotypic data for the second panel were collected during subsequent clonal selection generations at the individual breeding companies. QTL were identified for 19 agro-morphological and quality traits. Two association mapping models were used: a baseline model without, and a more advanced model with correction for population structure and genetic relatedness. Correction for population structure and genetic relatedness was performed with a kinship matrix estimated from marker information. The detected QTL partly not only confirmed previous studies, e.g. for tuber shape and frying colour, but also new QTL were found like for after baking darkening and enzymatic browning. Pleiotropic effects could be discerned for several QTL. PMID:24408376

  1. Analysis of non-coding transcriptome in rice and maize uncovers roles of conserved lncRNAs associated with agriculture traits.

    PubMed

    Wang, Huan; Niu, Qi-Wen; Wu, Hui-Wen; Liu, Jun; Ye, Jian; Yu, Niu; Chua, Nam-Hai

    2015-10-01

    Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) have recently been found to widely exist in eukaryotes and play important roles in key biological processes. To extend our knowledge of lncRNAs in crop plants we performed both non-directional and strand-specific RNA-sequencing experiments to profile non-coding transcriptomes of various rice and maize organs at different developmental stages. Analysis of more than 3 billion reads identified 22 334 long intergenic non-coding RNAs (lincRNAs) and 6673 pairs of sense and natural antisense transcript (NAT). Many lincRNA genes were associated with epigenetic marks. Expression of rice lincRNA genes was significantly correlated with that of nearby protein-coding genes. A set of NAT genes also showed expression correlation with their sense genes. More than 200 rice lincRNA genes had homologous non-coding sequences in the maize genome. Much more lincRNA and NAT genes were derived from conserved genomic regions between the two cereals presenting positional conservation. Protein-coding genes flanking or having a sense-antisense relationship to these conserved lncRNA genes were mainly involved in development and stress responses, suggesting that the associated lncRNAs might have similar functions. Integrating previous genome-wide association studies (GWAS), we found that hundreds of lincRNAs contain trait-associated SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms [SNPs]) suggesting their putative contributions to developmental and agriculture traits.

  2. An integrated genetic map based on four mapping populations and quantitative trait loci associated with economically important traits in watermelon (Citrullus lanatus)

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Modern watermelon (Citrullus lanatus L.) cultivars share a narrow genetic base due to many years of selection for desirable horticultural qualities. Wild subspecies within C. lanatus are important potential sources of novel alleles for watermelon breeding, but successful trait introgression into elite cultivars has had limited success. The application of marker assisted selection (MAS) in watermelon is yet to be realized, mainly due to the past lack of high quality genetic maps. Recently, a number of useful maps have become available, however these maps have few common markers, and were constructed using different marker sets, thus, making integration and comparative analysis among maps difficult. The objective of this research was to use single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) anchor markers to construct an integrated genetic map for C. lanatus. Results Under the framework of the high density genetic map, an integrated genetic map was constructed by merging data from four independent mapping experiments using a genetically diverse array of parental lines, which included three subspecies of watermelon. The 698 simple sequence repeat (SSR), 219 insertion-deletion (InDel), 36 structure variation (SV) and 386 SNP markers from the four maps were used to construct an integrated map. This integrated map contained 1339 markers, spanning 798 cM with an average marker interval of 0.6 cM. Fifty-eight previously reported quantitative trait loci (QTL) for 12 traits in these populations were also integrated into the map. In addition, new QTL identified for brix, fructose, glucose and sucrose were added. Some QTL associated with economically important traits detected in different genetic backgrounds mapped to similar genomic regions of the integrated map, suggesting that such QTL are responsible for the phenotypic variability observed in a broad array of watermelon germplasm. Conclusions The integrated map described herein enhances the utility of genomic tools over

  3. Microbial diversity of vermicompost bacteria that exhibit useful agricultural traits and waste management potential.

    PubMed

    Pathma, Jayakumar; Sakthivel, Natarajan

    2012-01-01

    Vermicomposting is a non-thermophilic, boioxidative process that involves earthworms and associated microbes. This biological organic waste decomposition process yields the biofertilizer namely the vermicompost. Vermicompost is a finely divided, peat like material with high porosity, good aeration, drainage, water holding capacity, microbial activity, excellent nutrient status and buffering capacity thereby resulting the required physiochemical characters congenial for soil fertility and plant growth. Vermicompost enhances soil biodiversity by promoting the beneficial microbes which inturn enhances plant growth directly by production of plant growth-regulating hormones and enzymes and indirectly by controlling plant pathogens, nematodes and other pests, thereby enhancing plant health and minimizing the yield loss. Due to its innate biological, biochemical and physiochemical properties, vermicompost may be used to promote sustainable agriculture and also for the safe management of agricultural, industrial, domestic and hospital wastes which may otherwise pose serious threat to life and environment.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-12-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  6. Evolution in response to social selection: the importance of interactive effects of traits on fitness.

    PubMed

    Westneat, David F

    2012-03-01

    Social interactions have a powerful effect on the evolutionary process. Recent attempts to synthesize models of social selection with equations for indirect genetic effects (McGlothlin et al. 2010) provide a broad theoretical base from which to study selection and evolutionary response in the context of social interactions. However, this framework concludes that social selection will lead to evolution only if the traits carried by social partners are nonrandomly associated. I suggest this conclusion is incomplete, and that traits that do not covary between social partners can nevertheless lead to evolution via interactive effects on fitness. Such effects occur when there are functional interactions between traits, and as an example I use the interplay in water striders (Gerridae) between grasping appendages carried by males and spines by females. Functional interactive effects between traits can be incorporated into both the equations for social selection and the general model of social evolution proposed by McGlothlin et al. These expanded equations would accommodate adaptive coevolution in social interactions, integrate the quantitative genetic approach to social evolution with game theoretical approaches, and stimulate some new questions about the process of social evolution.

  7. 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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

    Tanksale, Deepa

    2015-02-01

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

  13. The importance of climate change and nitrogen use efficiency for future nitrous oxide emissions from agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanter, David R.; Zhang, Xin; Mauzerall, Denise L.; Malyshev, Sergey; Shevliakova, Elena

    2016-09-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is an important greenhouse gas and ozone depleting substance. Previous projections of agricultural N2O (the dominant anthropogenic source) show emissions changing in tandem, or at a faster rate than changes in nitrogen (N) consumption. However, recent studies suggest that the carbon dioxide (CO2) fertilization effect may increase plant N uptake, which could decrease soil N losses and dampen increases in N2O. To evaluate this hypothesis at a global scale, we use a process-based land model with a coupled carbon-nitrogen cycle to examine how changes in climatic factors, land-use, and N application rates could affect agricultural N2O emissions by 2050. Assuming little improvement in N use efficiency (NUE), the model projects a 24%–31% increase in global agricultural N2O emissions by 2040–2050 depending on the climate scenario—a relatively moderate increase compared to the projected increases in N inputs (42%–44%) and previously published emissions projections (38%–75%). This occurs largely because the CO2 fertilization effect enhances plant N uptake in several regions, which subsequently dampens N2O emissions. And yet, improvements in NUE could still deliver important environmental benefits by 2050: equivalent to 10 Pg CO2 equivalent and 0.6 Tg ozone depletion potential.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Genetic basis of agronomically important traits in sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.) investigated with joint linkage association mapping.

    PubMed

    Reif, Jochen C; Liu, Wenxin; Gowda, Manje; Maurer, Hans Peter; Möhring, Jens; Fischer, Sandra; Schechert, Axel; Würschum, Tobias

    2010-11-01

    Epistatic interactions may contribute substantially to the hybrid performance of sugar beet. The main goal of our study was to dissect the genetic basis of eight important physiological and agronomic traits using two different biometrical models for joint linkage association mapping. A total of 197 genotypes of an elite breeding population were evaluated in multi-location trials and fingerprinted with 194 SNP markers. Two different statistical models were used for the genome-wide scan for marker-trait associations: Model A, which corrects for the genetic background with markers as cofactors and Model B, which additionally models a population effect. Based on the extent of linkage disequilibrium in the parental population, we estimated that for a genome-wide scan at least 100 equally spaced markers are necessary. We mapped across the eight traits 39 QTL for Model A and 22 for Model B. Only 11% of the total number of QTL were identified based on Models A and B, which indicates that both models are complementary. Epistasis was detected only for two out of the eight traits, and contributed only to a minor extent to the genotypic variance. This low relevance of epistasis implies that in sugar beet breeding the prediction of performance of three-way hybrids is feasible with high accuracy based on the means of their single crosses.

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-04-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  1. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ...-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND... Programs, which conditions may include clearance through the New Crops Research Branch of the Plant Science Research Division, Agricultural Research Services....

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

    PubMed Central

    Bosch, Oliver J.; Neumann, Inga D.

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  4. Scanning of selection signature provides a glimpse into important economic traits in goats (Capra hircus)

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Dailu; Luo, Nanjian; Tan, Xiaoshan; Zhao, Zhongquan; Huang, Yongfu; Na, Risu; Zhang, Jiahua; Zhao, Yongju

    2016-01-01

    Goats (Capra hircus) are one of the oldest livestock domesticated species, and have been used for their milk, meat, hair and skins over much of the world. Detection of selection footprints in genomic regions can provide potential insights for understanding the genetic mechanism of specific phenotypic traits and better guide in animal breeding. The study presented here has generated 192.747G raw data and identified more than 5.03 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and 334,151 Indels (insertions and deletions). In addition, we identified 155 and 294 candidate regions harboring 86 and 97 genes based on allele frequency differences in Dazu black goats (DBG) and Inner Mongolia cashmere goats (IMCG), respectively. Populations differentiation reflected by Fst values detected 368 putative selective sweep regions including 164 genes. The top 1% regions of both low heterozygosity and high genetic differentiation contained 239 (135 genes) and 176 (106 genes) candidate regions in DBG and IMCG, respectively. These genes were related to reproductive and productive traits, such as “neurohypophyseal hormone activity” and “adipocytokine signaling pathway”. These findings may be conducive to molecular breeding and the long-term preservation of the valuable genetic resources for this species. PMID:27796358

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2005-09-01

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

  16. Tetracycline and Phenicol Resistance Genes and Mechanisms: Importance for Agriculture, the Environment, and Humans.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Marilyn C; Schwarz, Stefan

    2016-03-01

    Recent reports have speculated on the future impact that antibiotic-resistant bacteria will have on food production, human health, and global economics. This review examines microbial resistance to tetracyclines and phenicols, antibiotics that are widely used in global food production. The mechanisms of resistance, mode of spread between agriculturally and human-impacted environments and ecosystems, distribution among bacteria, and the genes most likely to be associated with agricultural and environmental settings are included. Forty-six different tetracycline resistance () genes have been identified in 126 genera, with (M) having the broadest taxonomic distribution among all bacteria and (B) having the broadest coverage among the Gram-negative genera. Phenicol resistance genes are organized into 37 groups and have been identified in 70 bacterial genera. The review provides the latest information on tetracycline and phenicol resistance genes, including their association with mobile genetic elements in bacteria of environmental, medical, and veterinary relevance. Knowing what specific antibiotic-resistance genes (ARGs) are found in specific bacterial species and/or genera is critical when using a selective suite of ARGs for detection or surveillance studies. As detection methods move to molecular techniques, our knowledge about which type of bacteria carry which resistance gene(s) will become more important to ensure that the whole spectrum of bacteria are included in future surveillance studies. This review provides information needed to integrate the biology, taxonomy, and ecology of tetracycline- and phenicol-resistant bacteria and their resistance genes so that informative surveillance strategies can be developed and the correct genes selected.

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  18. Biorational agents--mechanism and importance in IPM and IRM programs for controlling agricultural pests.

    PubMed

    Ishaaya, I; Kontsedalov, S; Mazirov, D; Horowitz, A R

    2001-01-01

    Among the new approaches for controlling agricultural pests is the development of novel compounds affecting specific processes in insects such as chitin synthesis inhibitors, juvenile hormone mimics and ecdysone agonists. In addition, efforts have been made to develop compounds acting selectively on groups of insects by inhibiting or enhancing biochemical sites such as respiration (diafenthiuron), the nicotinyl acetylcholine receptors (imidacloprid and acetamiprid), the GABA receptors (avermectins), the salivary glands of sucking pests (pymetrozine) and others. Among the most recent novel insecticides with selective properties are novaluron, thiamethoxam, emamectin and spinosad. Novaluron (Rimon) is a novel chitin synthesis inhibitor that acts by both ingestion and contact. It is a powerful suppressor of lepidopteran larvae such as Spodoptera littoralis and Helicoverpa armigera (by ingestion) and of whiteflies such as Bemisia tabaci and Trialeurodes vaporariorum (by contact). Thiamethoxam (Actarn), a novel neonicotinoid acts specifically on aphids and whiteflies. Emamectin (Proclaim), an avermectin derivative acts on GABA receptor affecting diversity of insects such as mites, lepidopterans and thrips. Spinosad (Tracer) seems to act on both acetylcholine and GABA receptors affecting diversity of insect species and is considered an important agent for controlling the western flower thrips.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  20. Genome-wide analysis reveals selection for important traits in domestic horse breeds.

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Taft, Oriane W.; Haig, Susan M.

    2006-01-01

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

  2. EM Algorithm for Mapping Quantitative Trait Loci in Multivalent Tetraploids

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Multivalent tetraploids that include many plant species, such as potato, sugarcane and rose, are of paramount importance to agricultural production and biological research. Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping in multivalent tetraploids is challenged by their unique cytogenetic properties, such ...

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  4. Genetic mapping of quantitative trait loci associated with important agronomic traits in the spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) cross ‘Louise’ by ‘Penawawa’

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding the genetic factors underlying agronomic traits in common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) is essential to making gains from selection during the breeding process. A set of 188 recombinant inbred lines from a ‘Louise’ by ‘Penawawa’ mapping population was grown in two crop years at two loc...

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-03-05

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

  6. Using wetlands for water quality improvement in agricultural watersheds; the importance of a watershed scale approach.

    PubMed

    Crumpton, W G

    2001-01-01

    Agricultural applications of fertilizers and pesticides have increased dramatically since the middle 1960s, and agrochemical contamination of surface and groundwater has become a serious environmental concern. Since the mid-1980s, a variety of state and federal programs have been used to promote wetland restoration, and these continuing efforts provide a unique opportunity for water quality improvement in agricultural watersheds. However, wetland restorations have been motivated primarily by concern over waterfowl habitat loss, and model simulations suggest that commonly used site selection criteria for wetland restorations may be inadequate for water quality purposes. This does not lessen the promise of wetlands for water quality improvement in agricultural watersheds, but rather emphasizes the need for watershed scale approaches to wetland siting and design. Water quality is best viewed from a watershed perspective, and watershed scale endpoints should be explicitly considered in site selection for wetland restoration.

  7. Construct validity of adolescents' self-reported big five personality traits: importance of conceptual breadth and initial validation of a short measure.

    PubMed

    Morizot, Julien

    2014-10-01

    While there are a number of short personality trait measures that have been validated for use with adults, few are specifically validated for use with adolescents. To trust such measures, it must be demonstrated that they have adequate construct validity. According to the view of construct validity as a unifying form of validity requiring the integration of different complementary sources of information, this article reports the evaluation of content, factor, convergent, and criterion validities as well as reliability of adolescents' self-reported personality traits. Moreover, this study sought to address an inherent potential limitation of short personality trait measures, namely their limited conceptual breadth. In this study, starting with items from a known measure, after the language-level was adjusted for use with adolescents, items tapping fundamental primary traits were added to determine the impact of added conceptual breadth on the psychometric properties of the scales. The resulting new measure was named the Big Five Personality Trait Short Questionnaire (BFPTSQ). A group of expert judges considered the items to have adequate content validity. Using data from a community sample of early adolescents, the results confirmed the factor validity of the Big Five structure in adolescence as well as its measurement invariance across genders. More important, the added items did improve the convergent and criterion validities of the scales, but did not negatively affect their reliability. This study supports the construct validity of adolescents' self-reported personality traits and points to the importance of conceptual breadth in short personality measures.

  8. Agricultural effects on amphibian parasitism: importance of general habitat perturbations and parasite life cycles.

    PubMed

    Koprivnikar, Janet; Redfern, Julia C

    2012-10-01

    Agricultural activity can alter host-parasite interactions through associated contaminants and habitat perturbations. It is critical to determine whether agricultural effects are widespread or limited to specific types of agriculture. We examined influences of soybean agriculture on trematode parasitism of larval amphibians (grey tree frogs; Hyla versicolor) to assess the potential effects of a commonly applied pesticide (glyphosate) and landscape factors relative to previous field studies focusing on the herbicide atrazine. Overall, trematode parasite infection did not differ between soybean-adjacent and nonagricultural ponds (87.7% and 72.6% mean infection, respectively). However, host-generalist echinostome species were more common in tadpoles from soybean-associated ponds (86.3% mean infection versus 36.2% in nonagricultural ponds) as well as sites with large or short average distances to forest cover and roads, respectively. In contrast, the occurrence of a host-specialist (Alaria sp.) group was greater in nonagricultural ponds (50.3% mean infection versus 9.8% in soybean-associated ponds) and increased with shorter distances to the closest forest patch and smaller average forest distance. Because glyphosate was not detected at any site and landscape influences were parasite-specific, we suggest that agriculture may have broad effects on wildlife diseases through habitat alterations that affect pathogen transmission via host habitat suitability. Notably, nonagricultural ponds had a lower mean distance to the nearest forest patch and lower mean forest distance compared with soybean-adjacent ponds. As a result, we emphasize the need for wider investigations of habitat perturbations generally associated with agriculture for host-pathogen interactions, and consequently, wildlife conservation and management strategies.

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  10. 75 FR 11512 - Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-03-11

    ... Foreign Agricultural Service Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in... public meeting of the Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported... forced labor or child labor. The notice sets forth the process for requesting to appear at the...

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

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

  13. Genetic parameters and correlations of collar rot resistance with important biochemical and yield traits in opium poppy (Papaver somniferum L.).

    PubMed

    Trivedi, Mala; Tiwari, Rajesh K; Dhawan, Om P

    2006-01-01

    Collar rot, caused by Rhizoctonia solani Kühn, is one of the most severe fungal diseases of opium poppy. In this study, heritability, genetic advance and correlation for 10 agronomic, 1 physiological, 3 biochemical and 1 chemical traits with disease severity index (DSI) for collar rot were assessed in 35 accessions of opium poppy. Most of the economically important characters, like seed and capsule straw yield per plant, oil and protein content of seeds, peroxidase activity in leaves, morphine content of capsule straw and DSI for collar rot showed high heritability as well as genetic advance. Highly significant negative correlation between DSI and seed yield clearly shows that as the disease progresses in plants, seed yield declines, chiefly due to premature death of infected plants as well as low seed and capsule setting in the survived population of susceptible plants. Similarly, a highly significant negative correlation between peroxidase activity and DSI indicated that marker-assisted selection of disease-resistant plants based on high peroxidase activity would be effective and survived susceptible plants could be removed from the population to stop further spread.

  14. Life-history traits and effective population size in species with overlapping generations revisited: the importance of adult mortality.

    PubMed

    Waples, R S

    2016-10-01

    The relationship between life-history traits and the key eco-evolutionary parameters effective population size (Ne) and Ne/N is revisited for iteroparous species with overlapping generations, with a focus on the annual rate of adult mortality (d). Analytical methods based on populations with arbitrarily long adult lifespans are used to evaluate the influence of d on Ne, Ne/N and the factors that determine these parameters: adult abundance (N), generation length (T), age at maturity (α), the ratio of variance to mean reproductive success in one season by individuals of the same age (φ) and lifetime variance in reproductive success of individuals in a cohort (Vk•). Although the resulting estimators of N, T and Vk• are upwardly biased for species with short adult lifespans, the estimate of Ne/N is largely unbiased because biases in T are compensated for by biases in Vk• and N. For the first time, the contrasting effects of T and Vk• on Ne and Ne/N are jointly considered with respect to d and φ. A simple function of d and α based on the assumption of constant vital rates is shown to be a robust predictor (R(2)=0.78) of Ne/N in an empirical data set of life tables for 63 animal and plant species with diverse life histories. Results presented here should provide important context for interpreting the surge of genetically based estimates of Ne that has been fueled by the genomics revolution. PMID:27273324

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

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klumpp, Katja

    2014-05-01

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

  17. A design-constraint trade-off underpins the diversity in ecologically important traits in species Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Phan, Katherine; Ferenci, Thomas

    2013-10-01

    Bacterial species are internally diverse in genomic and multi-locus gene comparisons. The ecological causes of phenotypic and genotypic diversity within species are far less well understood. Here, we focus on the competitive fitness for growth on nutrients within Escherichia coli, an internally rich species. Competition experiments in nutrient-limited chemostats revealed that members of the ECOR collection exhibited a wide continuum of competitive abilities, with some fitter and some less fit than the lab strain MG1655. We observed an inverse relationship between competitiveness and the resistance of strains to detergent and antibiotic, consistent with the notion that membrane permeability and competitive fitness are linked by a trade-off between self-preservation and nutritional competence (SPANC); high permeability has a postulated cost in antibacterial sensitivity whereas a low permeability has a cost in nutrient affinity. Isolates moved along the markedly nonlinear trade-off curve by mutational adaptation; an ECOR strain sensitive to antibacterials and a good competitor was easily converted by mutation into a mutant with higher resistance but poorer competition in the presence of low antibiotic concentrations. Conversely, a resistant ECOR strain changed into a better competitor after a short period of selection under nutrient limitation. In both directions, mutations can affect porin proteins and outer membrane permeability, as indicated by protein analysis, gene sequencing and an independent assay of outer membrane permeability. The extensive, species-wide diversity of E. coli in ecologically important traits can thus be explained as an evolutionary consequence of a SPANC trade-off driven by antagonistic pleiotropy.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Nutrient loading associated with agriculture land use dampens the importance of consumer-mediated niche construction.

    PubMed

    Spooner, Daniel E; Frost, Paul C; Hillebrand, Helmut; Arts, Michael T; Puckrin, Olivia; Xenopoulos, Marguerite A

    2013-09-01

    The linkages between biological communities and ecosystem function remain poorly understood along gradients of human-induced stressors. We examined how resource provisioning (nutrient recycling), mediated by native freshwater mussels, influences the structure and function of benthic communities by combining observational data and a field experiment. We compared the following: (1) elemental and community composition (algal pigments and macroinvertebates) on live mussel shells and on nearby rocks across a gradient of catchment agriculture and (2) experimental colonisation of benthic communities on live vs. sham shells controlling for initial community composition and colonisation duration. We show that in near pristine systems, nutrient heterogeneity mediated by mussels relates to greater biodiversity of communities, which supports the notion that resource heterogeneity can foster biological diversity. However, with increased nutrients from the catchment, the relevance of mussel-provisioned nutrients was nearly eliminated. While species can persist in disturbed systems, their functional relevance may be diminished or lost.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gwata, E.

    2012-04-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-06-01

    Genetic selection for residual feed intake (RFI) is an indirect approach for reducing enteric methane (CH4) emissions in beef and dairy cattle. RFI is moderately heritable (0.26 to 0.43), moderately repeatable across diets (0.33 to 0.67) and independent of body size and production, and when adjusted for off-test ultrasound backfat thickness (RFI fat) is also independent of body fatness in growing animals. It is highly dependent on accurate measurement of individual animal feed intake. Within-animal repeatability of feed intake is moderate (0.29 to 0.49) with distinctive diurnal patterns associated with cattle type, diet and genotype, necessitating the recording of feed intake for at least 35 days. In addition, direct measurement of enteric CH4 production will likely be more variable and expensive than measuring feed intake and if conducted should be expressed as CH4 production (g/animal per day) adjusted for body size, growth, body composition and dry matter intake (DMI) or as residual CH4 production. A further disadvantage of a direct CH4 phenotype is that the relationships of enteric CH4 production on other economically important traits are largely unknown. Selection for low RFI fat (efficient, -RFI fat) will result in cattle that consume less dry matter (DMI) and have an improved feed conversion ratio (FCR) compared with high RFI fat cattle (inefficient; +RFI fat). Few antagonistic effects have been reported for the relationships of RFI fat on carcass and meat quality, fertility, cow lifetime productivity and adaptability to stress or extensive grazing conditions. Low RFI fat cattle also produce 15% to 25% less enteric CH4 than +RFI fat cattle, since DMI is positively related to enteric methane (CH4) production. In addition, lower DMI and feeding duration and frequency, and a different rumen bacterial profile that improves rumen fermentation in -RFI fat cattle may favor a 1% to 2% improvement in dry matter and CP digestibility compared with +RFI fat cattle. Rate

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-12-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  5. Assessing the importance of genotype x environment interaction for root traits in rice using a mapping population. I: a soil-filled box screen.

    PubMed

    MacMillan, K; Emrich, K; Piepho, H-P; Mullins, C E; Price, A H

    2006-10-01

    Altering root system architecture is considered a method of improving crop water and soil nutrient capture. The analysis of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for root traits has revealed inconsistency in the same population evaluated in different environments. It must be clarified if this is due to genotype x environment interaction or considerations of statistics if the value of QTLs for marker-assisted breeding is to be estimated. A modified split-plot design was used where a main plot corresponded to a separate experiment. The main plot factor had four treatments (environments), which were completely randomized among eight trials, so that each treatment was replicated twice. The sub-plot factor consisted of 168 recombinant inbreed lines of the Bala x Azucena rice mapping population, randomly allocated to the seven soil-filled boxes. The aim of the trial was to quantify QTL x environment interaction. The treatments were chosen to alter partitioning to roots; consisting of a control treatment (high-soil nitrogen, high light and high-water content) and further treatments where light, soil nitrogen or soil water was reduced singly. After 4 weeks growth, maximum root length (MRL), maximum root thickness, root mass below 50 cm, total plant dry mass (%), root mass and shoot length were measured. The treatments affected plant growth as predicted; low nitrogen and drought increased relative root partitioning, low-light decreased it. The parental varieties Bala and Azucena differed significantly for all traits. Broad-sense heritability of most traits was high (57-86%). Variation due to treatment was the most important influence on the variance, while genotype was next. Genotype x environment interaction was detected for all traits except MRL, although the proportion of variation due to this interaction was generally small. It is concluded that genotype x environment interaction is present but less important than genotypic variation. A companion paper presents QTL x

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Day, John C.; Horner, Gerald L.

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

    Elhai, Jeff

    2001-06-25

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-06-01

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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2006-02-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    We prospectively evaluated adolescent organized physical activity (PA) as a factor in adult female bone traits. Annual DXA scans accompanied semi-annual records of anthropometry, maturity and PA for 42 participants in this preliminary analysis (criteria: appropriately timed DXA scans at ~1 year pre-menarche [predictor] and ~5 years post-menarche [dependent variable]). Regression analysis evaluated total adolescent inter-scan PA and PA over 3 maturity sub-phases as predictors of young adult bone outcomes: 1) bone mineral content (BMC), geometry and strength indices at non-dominant distal radius and femoral neck; 2) sub-head BMC; 3) lumbar spine BMC. Analyses accounted for baseline gynecological age (years pre- or post-menarche), baseline bone status, adult body size and inter-scan body size change. Gymnastics training was evaluated as a potentially independent predictor, but did not improve models for any outcomes (p<0.07). Pre-menarcheal bone traits were strong predictors of most adult outcomes (semi-partial r2 = 0.21-0.59, p≤0.001). Adult 1/3 radius and sub-head BMC were predicted by both total PA and PA 1-3 years post-menarche (p<0.03). PA 3-5 years post-menarche predicted femoral narrow neck width, endosteal diameter and buckling ratio (p<0.05). Thus, participation in organized physical activity programs throughout middle and high school may reduce lifetime fracture risk in females. PMID:25386845

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

    Ozsoy, Gokhan; Aksoy, Ertugrul

    2015-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Ozsoy, Gokhan; Aksoy, Ertugrul

    2015-07-01

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

  19. Screening of plant growth-promoting traits in arsenic-resistant bacteria isolated from agricultural soil and their potential implication for arsenic bioremediation.

    PubMed

    Das, Suvendu; Jean, Jiin-Shuh; Kar, Sandeep; Chou, Mon-Lin; Chen, Chien-Yen

    2014-05-15

    Twelve arsenic (As)-resistant bacteria (minimum inhibitory concentration ranging from 10 to 30mM and 150 to 320mM for As(III) and As(V), respectively) were isolated from the agricultural soil of the Chianan Plain in southwestern Taiwan using enrichment techniques. Eight isolates capable of oxidizing As(III) (rate of oxidation from 0.029 to 0.059μMh(-1) 10(-9) cell) and exhibiting As(III)-oxidase enzyme activity belong to Pseudomonas, Acinetobacter, Klebsiella and Comamonas genera, whereas four isolates that did not show As(III)-oxidizing activity belong to Geobacillus, Bacillus, Paenibacillus, and Enterobacter genera. Assessment of the parameters of plant growth promotion revealed that Pseudomonas sp. ASR1, ASR2 and ASR3, Geobacillus sp. ASR4, Bacillus sp. ASR5, Paenibacillus sp. ASR6, Enterobacter sp. ASR10 and Comamonas sp. ASR11, and ASR12 possessed some or all of the studied plant growth-promoting traits, including phosphate-solubilization, siderophore, IAA-like molecules and ACC deaminase production. In addition, the ability of As-resistant isolates to grow over wide ranges of pH and temperatures signify their potential application for sustainable bioremediation of As in the environment. PMID:24685527

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    2011-12-20

    response of species to climate change, but our experiments suggest that other processes may act in some species that reduce the likelihood of geographic range change. In the first part of our DOE grant (ending 2008) we argued that the process of local adaptation of populations within a species range, followed by climatic changes that occur too quickly for adaptive evolution, is an underappreciated mechanism by which climate change could affect biodiversity. When this process acts, species ranges may not shift readily toward the poles, slowing the rate of species and biome change. To test this claim, we performed an experiment comparing core and peripheral populations in a series of field observations, translocation experiments, and genetic analyses. The papers in Appendix A were generated from 2005-2008 funding. In the second part of the DOE grant (ending 2011) we studied which traits promote population differentiation and local adaptation by building genomic resources for our study species and using these resources to reveal differences in gene expression in peripheral and core populations. The papers in Appendix B were generated from 2008-2011 funding. This work was pursued with two butterfly species that have contrasting life history traits (body size and resource specialization) and occupy a common ecosystem and a latitudinal range. These species enabled us to test the following hypotheses using a single phylogenetic group.

  1. 76 FR 20305 - Consultative Group To Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-04-12

    ... supply chain. e. Monitoring should occur on a continuous basis, as well as in response to any... Guidelines for Eliminating Child and Forced Labor in Agricultural Supply Chains. SUMMARY: Notice is hereby... labor and the worst forms of child labor in agricultural supply chains. We are interested to...

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-17

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

  4. Whole genome association study for drought, aflatoxin resistance, and important agronomic traits in maize in a sub-tropical environment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The primary maize (Zea mays L.) production areas are in temperate regions throughout the world, where most maize breeding is focused. Important but lower yielding maize growing regions, such as the sub-tropics, experience unique challenges the greatest of which are drought stress and aflatoxin conta...

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

    PubMed

    Falloon, Pete; Betts, Richard

    2010-11-01

    We review and qualitatively assess the importance of interactions and feedbacks in assessing climate change impacts on water and agriculture in Europe. We focus particularly on the impact of future hydrological changes on agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation and adaptation options. Future projected trends in European agriculture include northward movement of crop suitability zones and increasing crop productivity in Northern Europe, but declining productivity and suitability in Southern Europe. This may be accompanied by a widening of water resource differences between the North and South, and an increase in extreme rainfall events and droughts. Changes in future hydrology and water management practices will influence agricultural adaptation measures and alter the effectiveness of agricultural mitigation strategies. These interactions are often highly complex and influenced by a number of factors which are themselves influenced by climate. Mainly positive impacts may be anticipated for Northern Europe, where agricultural adaptation may be shaped by reduced vulnerability of production, increased water supply and reduced water demand. However, increasing flood hazards may present challenges for agriculture, and summer irrigation shortages may result from earlier spring runoff peaks in some regions. Conversely, the need for effective adaptation will be greatest in Southern Europe as a result of increased production vulnerability, reduced water supply and increased demands for irrigation. Increasing flood and drought risks will further contribute to the need for robust management practices. The impacts of future hydrological changes on agricultural mitigation in Europe will depend on the balance between changes in productivity and rates of decomposition and GHG emission, both of which depend on climatic, land and management factors. Small increases in European soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks per unit land area are anticipated considering changes in climate

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2006-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2009-01-01

    significant anthocyanin content, exhibited increased photoprotection mechanisms under water deficit conditions. Water deficit increased ABA, proline, sugar and anthocyanin concentrations in Cabernet Sauvignon, but not Chardonnay berries, consistent with the hypothesis that ABA enhanced accumulation of these compounds. Water deficit increased the transcript abundance of lipoxygenase and hydroperoxide lyase in fatty metabolism, a pathway known to affect berry and wine aromas. These changes in metabolism have important impacts on berry flavor and quality characteristics. Several of these metabolites are known to contribute to increased human-health benefits. PMID:19426499

  8. Delaying colostrum intake by one day has important effects on metabolic traits and on gastrointestinal and metabolic hormones in neonatal calves.

    PubMed

    Hadorn, U; Hammon, H; Bruckmaier, R M; Blum, J W

    1997-10-01

    Effects on metabolic and endocrine traits of feeding colostrum on d 1 and 2, then mature milk up to d 7, or glucose or water on d 1, colostrum on d 2 and 3 and then mature milk up to d 7 were studied in calves. Calves fed colostrum within the first 24 h after birth had significantly higher rectal temperatures, heart rates and respiratory frequencies than calves provided only water or glucose. Significantly elevated plasma nonesterified fatty acid and bilirubin concentrations on d 1 and 2 of life in calves fed only water on d 1 compared with calves of the other groups mirrored reduced energy intake. Fecal consistency was significantly higher during wk 1 of life, and gastrin and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide increased only on d 1 and/or 2 of life in calves already fed colostrum on d 1, expressing improved functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. Significantly higher plasma globulin levels up to d 7 in calves fed colostrum on d 1 than in those starting colostrum intake only on d 2 demonstrated significantly enhanced efficiency of gamma-globulin absorption. Furthermore, significantly higher circulating glucose, albumin, insulin, insulin-like growth factor-I concentrations and significantly lower urea levels in calves fed colostrum on d 1 compared with those fed colostrum starting on d 2 of life indicated stimulation of anabolic processes. In conclusion, colostrum intake by calves within the first 24 h of life is needed not only for an adequate immune status, but also to produce the additional important and favorable effects on metabolic and endocrine traits and on vitality.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Onanuga, Peter Abayomi

    2015-01-01

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  13. The importance of the regional species pool, ecological species traits and local habitat conditions for the colonization of restored river reaches by fish.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  14. Roles of UV-damaged DNA binding protein 1 (DDB1) in epigenetically modifying multiple traits of agronomic importance in tomato.

    PubMed

    Tang, Xiaofeng; Liu, Jikai; Huang, Shengxiong; Shi, Wei; Miao, Min; Tang, Dan Feng; Niu, Xiangli; Xiao, Fangming; Liu, Yongsheng

    2012-12-01

    Epigenetic regulation participates broadly in many fundamentally cellular and physiological processes. In this study, we found that DDB1, a protein originally identified as a factor involved in DNA repairing, plays important roles in regulating organ size, growth habit and photosynthesis in tomato via an epigenetic manner. We generated transgenic tomato plants overexpressing an alternatively spliced DDB1 transcript (DDB1(F) , prevalently present in tomato tissues) and found the primary transformants displayed small-fruited "cherry tomato" in companion with strikingly enhanced shoot branching and biomass, dark-green leaves with elevated chlorophyll accumulation, and increased soluble solids in fruits. Significantly, these phenotypic alterations did not segregate with the DDB1(F) transgene in subsequent generations, suggesting that the effect of DDB1(F) on multiple agronomic traits is implemented via an epigenetic manner and is inheritable over generations. We speculate that DDB1, as a core subunit in the recently identified CUL4-based E3 ligase complex, mediates the 26S proteasome-dependent degradation of a large number of proteins, some of which might be required for perpetuating epigenetic marks on chromatins. PMID:23073016

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-04-01

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

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ranalli, Anthony J.; MacAlady, Donald L.

    2010-01-01

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

  17. Agricultural Waste.

    PubMed

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

    2016-10-01

    In recent years, the quantity of agricultural waste has been rising rapidly all over the world. As a result, the environmental problems and negative impacts of agricultural waste are drawn more and more attention. Therefore, there is a need to adopt proper approaches to reduce and reuse agricultural waste. This review presented about 200 literatures published in 2015 relating to the topic of agricultural waste. The review examined research on agricultural waste in 2015 from the following four aspects: the characterization, reuse, treatment, and management. Researchers highlighted the importance to reuse agricultural waste and investigated the potential to utilize it as biofertilizers, cultivation material, soil amendments, adsorbent, material, energy recycling, enzyme and catalyst etc. The treatment of agricultural waste included carbonization, biodegradation, composting hydrolysis and pyrolysis. Moreover, this review analyzed the differences of the research progress in 2015 from 2014. It may help to reveal the new findings and new trends in this field in 2015 comparing to 2014. PMID:27620093

  18. Agricultural Waste.

    PubMed

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

    2016-10-01

    In recent years, the quantity of agricultural waste has been rising rapidly all over the world. As a result, the environmental problems and negative impacts of agricultural waste are drawn more and more attention. Therefore, there is a need to adopt proper approaches to reduce and reuse agricultural waste. This review presented about 200 literatures published in 2015 relating to the topic of agricultural waste. The review examined research on agricultural waste in 2015 from the following four aspects: the characterization, reuse, treatment, and management. Researchers highlighted the importance to reuse agricultural waste and investigated the potential to utilize it as biofertilizers, cultivation material, soil amendments, adsorbent, material, energy recycling, enzyme and catalyst etc. The treatment of agricultural waste included carbonization, biodegradation, composting hydrolysis and pyrolysis. Moreover, this review analyzed the differences of the research progress in 2015 from 2014. It may help to reveal the new findings and new trends in this field in 2015 comparing to 2014.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-12-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-04-01

    Variations in diabetic phenotypes are caused by complex interactions of genetic effects, environmental factors, and the interplay between the two. We tease apart these complex interactions by examining genome-wide genetic and epigenetic effects on diabetes-related traits among different sex, diet, and sex-by-diet cohorts in a Mus musculus model. We conducted a genome-wide scan for quantitative trait loci that affect serum glucose and insulin levels and response to glucose stress in an F(16) Advanced Intercross Line of the LG/J and SM/J intercross (Wustl:LG,SM-G16). Half of each sibship was fed a high-fat diet and half was fed a relatively low-fat diet. Context-dependent genetic (additive and dominance) and epigenetic (parent-of-origin imprinting) effects were characterized by partitioning animals into sex, diet, and sex-by-diet cohorts. We found that different cohorts often have unique genetic effects at the same loci, and that genetic signals can be masked or erroneously assigned to specific cohorts if they are not considered individually. Our data demonstrate that the effects of genes on complex trait variation are highly context-dependent and that the same genomic sequence can affect traits differently depending on an individual's sex and/or dietary environment. Our results have important implications for studies of complex traits in humans.

  1. The relative importance of fertilization and soil erosion on C-dynamics in agricultural landscapes of NE Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pohl, Madlen; Hoffmann, Mathias; Hagemann, Ulrike; Jurisch, Nicole; Remus, Rainer; Sommer, Michael; Augustin, Jürgen

    2016-04-01

    The hummocky ground moraine landscape of north-east Germany is characterized by distinct small-scale soil heterogeneity on the one hand, and intensive energy crop cultivation on the other. Both factors are assumed to significantly influence gaseous C exchange, and thus driving the dynamics of soil organic carbon stocks in terrestrial, agricultural ecosystems. However, it is not yet clear to which extent fertilization and soil erosional status influence soil C dynamics and whether one of these factors is more relevant than the other. We present seasonal and dynamic soil C balances of biogas maize for the growing season 2011, recorded at different sites located within the CarboZALF experimental area. The sites differ regarding soils (non-eroded Albic Luvisols (Cutanic), extremely eroded Calcaric Regosol and depositional Endogleyic Colluvic Regosol,) and applied fertilizer (100% mineral N fertilizer, 50% mineral and 50% N organic fertilizer, 100% organic N fertilizer). Fertilization treatments were established on the Albic Luvisol (Cutanic). Net-CO2-exchange (NEE) and ecosystem respiration (Reco) were measured every four weeks using a dynamic flow-through non-steady-state closed manual chamber system. Gap filling was performed based on empirical temperature and PAR dependency functions to derive daily NEE values. At the same time, daily above-ground biomass production (NPP) was estimated based on biomass samples and final harvest, using a sigmoidal growth function. In a next step, dynamic soil C balances were generated as the balance of daily NEE and NPP considering the initial C input due to N fertilizers. The resulted seasonal soil C balances varied from strong C losses at the Endogleyic Colluvic Regosol (602 g C m-2) to C gains at the Calcaric Regosol (-132 g C m-2). In general, soils exerted a stronger impact on seasonal and dynamic C balances compared to differences in applied N fertilizer. There are indications that inter-annual variations in climate conditions

  2. Trait stacking via targeted genome editing.

    PubMed

    Ainley, William M; Sastry-Dent, Lakshmi; Welter, Mary E; Murray, Michael G; Zeitler, Bryan; Amora, Rainier; Corbin, David R; Miles, Rebecca R; Arnold, Nicole L; Strange, Tonya L; Simpson, Matthew A; Cao, Zehui; Carroll, Carley; Pawelczak, Katherine S; Blue, Ryan; West, Kim; Rowland, Lynn M; Perkins, Douglas; Samuel, Pon; Dewes, Cristie M; Shen, Liu; Sriram, Shreedharan; Evans, Steven L; Rebar, Edward J; Zhang, Lei; Gregory, Phillip D; Urnov, Fyodor D; Webb, Steven R; Petolino, Joseph F

    2013-12-01

    Modern agriculture demands crops carrying multiple traits. The current paradigm of randomly integrating and sorting independently segregating transgenes creates severe downstream breeding challenges. A versatile, generally applicable solution is hereby provided: the combination of high-efficiency targeted genome editing driven by engineered zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs) with modular 'trait landing pads' (TLPs) that allow 'mix-and-match', on-demand transgene integration and trait stacking in crop plants. We illustrate the utility of nuclease-driven TLP technology by applying it to the stacking of herbicide resistance traits. We first integrated into the maize genome an herbicide resistance gene, pat, flanked with a TLP (ZFN target sites and sequences homologous to incoming DNA) using WHISKERS™-mediated transformation of embryogenic suspension cultures. We established a method for targeted transgene integration based on microparticle bombardment of immature embryos and used it to deliver a second trait precisely into the TLP via cotransformation with a donor DNA containing a second herbicide resistance gene, aad1, flanked by sequences homologous to the integrated TLP along with a corresponding ZFN expression construct. Remarkably, up to 5% of the embryo-derived transgenic events integrated the aad1 transgene precisely at the TLP, that is, directly adjacent to the pat transgene. Importantly and consistent with the juxtaposition achieved via nuclease-driven TLP technology, both herbicide resistance traits cosegregated in subsequent generations, thereby demonstrating linkage of the two independently transformed transgenes. Because ZFN-mediated targeted transgene integration is becoming applicable across an increasing number of crop species, this work exemplifies a simple, facile and rapid approach to trait stacking.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-08-19

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Nordeide, M B; Hatløy, A; Følling, M; Lied, E; Oshaug, A

    1996-11-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-01

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

  7. Power and Autistic Traits.

    PubMed

    Overskeid, Geir

    2016-01-01

    Autistic traits can help people gain and sustain power, and has probably done so throughout history, says the present paper. A number of testable claims follow from this assumption. First, the powerful should have more autistic traits than others - which they do appear to have. Among other things, powerful people, and those with many autistic traits, tend to prefer solitary activities and are often aloof. Moreover, they are often rigid and socially insensitive, low on empathy and with low scores on the trait of agreeableness - and as a rule they do not have many friends. Both groups are also more self-centered than others, more honest, less submissive, more sensitive to slights, and with a stronger tendency to engage in abstract thinking. They tend to behave in bossy or dominant ways, and their moral judgment is more based on rules than on feelings. In addition to experimental evidence, I cite biographies showing that a surprising number of presidents, prime ministers and other powerful people seem to have had traits like those in question - and interestingly, in animals, leaders are often rigid and insensitive to group members' needs and feelings, mostly acting the way they are themselves inclined to, not responding much to others. Problem solving is important in leadership, and people with many autistic traits appear often to be better thinkers than typical subjects with similar IQs. However, these and other congruities could be coincidences. Hence the question of whether traits the two groups have in common also have a common cause constitutes a strong test of the paper's thesis - and a common cause does appear to exist, in the form of testosterone's effects on the central nervous system. Finally, there is evidence that, other things equal, powerful men have more reproductive success than others. If men wielding power do indeed have more autistic traits than those less powerful, this will lead to, other things equal, such traits becoming more common - which can

  8. Power and Autistic Traits.

    PubMed

    Overskeid, Geir

    2016-01-01

    Autistic traits can help people gain and sustain power, and has probably done so throughout history, says the present paper. A number of testable claims follow from this assumption. First, the powerful should have more autistic traits than others - which they do appear to have. Among other things, powerful people, and those with many autistic traits, tend to prefer solitary activities and are often aloof. Moreover, they are often rigid and socially insensitive, low on empathy and with low scores on the trait of agreeableness - and as a rule they do not have many friends. Both groups are also more self-centered than others, more honest, less submissive, more sensitive to slights, and with a stronger tendency to engage in abstract thinking. They tend to behave in bossy or dominant ways, and their moral judgment is more based on rules than on feelings. In addition to experimental evidence, I cite biographies showing that a surprising number of presidents, prime ministers and other powerful people seem to have had traits like those in question - and interestingly, in animals, leaders are often rigid and insensitive to group members' needs and feelings, mostly acting the way they are themselves inclined to, not responding much to others. Problem solving is important in leadership, and people with many autistic traits appear often to be better thinkers than typical subjects with similar IQs. However, these and other congruities could be coincidences. Hence the question of whether traits the two groups have in common also have a common cause constitutes a strong test of the paper's thesis - and a common cause does appear to exist, in the form of testosterone's effects on the central nervous system. Finally, there is evidence that, other things equal, powerful men have more reproductive success than others. If men wielding power do indeed have more autistic traits than those less powerful, this will lead to, other things equal, such traits becoming more common - which can

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

    PubMed

    Silva, Giovanni Eustáquio Alves; Ramos, Flávia Toledo; de Faria, Ana Paula; França, Marcel Giovanni Costa

    2014-10-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-05

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

  11. Plant Defense against Herbivorous Pests: Exploiting Resistance and Tolerance Traits for Sustainable Crop Protection.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Carolyn; Brennan, Rex M; Graham, Julie; Karley, Alison J

    2016-01-01

    Interactions between plants and insect herbivores are important determinants of plant productivity in managed and natural vegetation. In response to attack, plants have evolved a range of defenses to reduce the threat of injury and loss of productivity. Crop losses from damage caused by arthropod pests can exceed 15% annually. Crop domestication and selection for improved yield and quality can alter the defensive capability of the crop, increasing reliance on artificial crop protection. Sustainable agriculture, however, depends on reduced chemical inputs. There is an urgent need, therefore, to identify plant defensive traits for crop improvement. Plant defense can be divided into resistance and tolerance strategies. Plant traits that confer herbivore resistance typically prevent or reduce herbivore damage through expression of traits that deter pests from settling, attaching to surfaces, feeding and reproducing, or that reduce palatability. Plant tolerance of herbivory involves expression of traits that limit the negative impact of herbivore damage on productivity and yield. Identifying the defensive traits expressed by plants to deter herbivores or limit herbivore damage, and understanding the underlying defense mechanisms, is crucial for crop scientists to exploit plant defensive traits in crop breeding. In this review, we assess the traits and mechanisms underpinning herbivore resistance and tolerance, and conclude that physical defense traits, plant vigor and herbivore-induced plant volatiles show considerable utility in pest control, along with mixed species crops. We highlight emerging approaches for accelerating the identification of plant defensive traits and facilitating their deployment to improve the future sustainability of crop protection.

  12. Plant Defense against Herbivorous Pests: Exploiting Resistance and Tolerance Traits for Sustainable Crop Protection.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Carolyn; Brennan, Rex M; Graham, Julie; Karley, Alison J

    2016-01-01

    Interactions between plants and insect herbivores are important determinants of plant productivity in managed and natural vegetation. In response to attack, plants have evolved a range of defenses to reduce the threat of injury and loss of productivity. Crop losses from damage caused by arthropod pests can exceed 15% annually. Crop domestication and selection for improved yield and quality can alter the defensive capability of the crop, increasing reliance on artificial crop protection. Sustainable agriculture, however, depends on reduced chemical inputs. There is an urgent need, therefore, to identify plant defensive traits for crop improvement. Plant defense can be divided into resistance and tolerance strategies. Plant traits that confer herbivore resistance typically prevent or reduce herbivore damage through expression of traits that deter pests from settling, attaching to surfaces, feeding and reproducing, or that reduce palatability. Plant tolerance of herbivory involves expression of traits that limit the negative impact of herbivore damage on productivity and yield. Identifying the defensive traits expressed by plants to deter herbivores or limit herbivore damage, and understanding the underlying defense mechanisms, is crucial for crop scientists to exploit plant defensive traits in crop breeding. In this review, we assess the traits and mechanisms underpinning herbivore resistance and tolerance, and conclude that physical defense traits, plant vigor and herbivore-induced plant volatiles show considerable utility in pest control, along with mixed species crops. We highlight emerging approaches for accelerating the identification of plant defensive traits and facilitating their deployment to improve the future sustainability of crop protection. PMID:27524994

  13. Plant Defense against Herbivorous Pests: Exploiting Resistance and Tolerance Traits for Sustainable Crop Protection

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, Carolyn; Brennan, Rex M.; Graham, Julie; Karley, Alison J.

    2016-01-01

    Interactions between plants and insect herbivores are important determinants of plant productivity in managed and natural vegetation. In response to attack, plants have evolved a range of defenses to reduce the threat of injury and loss of productivity. Crop losses from damage caused by arthropod pests can exceed 15% annually. Crop domestication and selection for improved yield and quality can alter the defensive capability of the crop, increasing reliance on artificial crop protection. Sustainable agriculture, however, depends on reduced chemical inputs. There is an urgent need, therefore, to identify plant defensive traits for crop improvement. Plant defense can be divided into resistance and tolerance strategies. Plant traits that confer herbivore resistance typically prevent or reduce herbivore damage through expression of traits that deter pests from settling, attaching to surfaces, feeding and reproducing, or that reduce palatability. Plant tolerance of herbivory involves expression of traits that limit the negative impact of herbivore damage on productivity and yield. Identifying the defensive traits expressed by plants to deter herbivores or limit herbivore damage, and understanding the underlying defense mechanisms, is crucial for crop scientists to exploit plant defensive traits in crop breeding. In this review, we assess the traits and mechanisms underpinning herbivore resistance and tolerance, and conclude that physical defense traits, plant vigor and herbivore-induced plant volatiles show considerable utility in pest control, along with mixed species crops. We highlight emerging approaches for accelerating the identification of plant defensive traits and facilitating their deployment to improve the future sustainability of crop protection. PMID:27524994

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bari, Abdallah

    2015-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  16. Genomic imprinting and parent-of-origin effects on complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Lawson, Heather A.; Cheverud, James M.

    2014-01-01

    Parent-of-origin effects occur when the phenotypic effect of an allele depends on whether it is inherited from an individual’s mother or father. Several phenomena can cause parent-of-origin effects, with the best characterized being parent-of-origin dependent gene expression associated with genomic imprinting. Imprinting plays a critical role in a diversity of biological processes and in certain contexts it structures epigenetic relationships between DNA sequence and phenotypic variation. The development of new mapping approaches applied to the growing abundance of genomic data has demonstrated that imprinted genes can be important contributors to complex trait variation. Therefore, to understand the genetic architecture and evolution of complex traits, including complex diseases and traits of agricultural importance, it is crucial to account for these parent-of-origin effects. Here we discuss patterns of phenotypic variation associated with imprinting, evidence supporting its role in complex trait variation, and approaches for identifying its molecular signatures. PMID:23917626

  17. Variations with modest effects have an important role in the genetic background of type 2 diabetes and diabetes-related traits.

    PubMed

    Fujita, Hayato; Hara, Kazuo; Shojima, Nobuhiro; Horikoshi, Momoko; Iwata, Minoru; Hirota, Yushi; Tobe, Kazuyuki; Seino, Susumu; Kadowaki, Takashi

    2012-12-01

    The aim of the present study was to explore the role of variations with modest effects (previously identified by a large-scale meta-analysis in European populations) in the genetic background of type 2 diabetes (T2D) and diabetes-related traits in a Japanese population. We enrolled 2632 Japanese subjects with T2D and 2050 non-diabetic subjects. We analyzed nine single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), including rs340874 (PROX1), rs4607517 (GCK), rs2191349 (DGKB-TMEM195), rs7034200 (GLIS3), rs10885122 (ADRA2A), rs174550 (FADS1), rs11605924 (CRY2), rs10830963 (MTNR1B) and rs35767 (IGF1). rs340874 (PROX1) and rs174550 (FADS1) were significantly associated with T2D (P=0.0078, OR: 1.12; and P=0.0071, OR: 1.12, respectively). Subjects with more risk alleles related to nine SNPs had an increased risk of T2D (P=0.0017), as well as a higher fasting plasma glucose level (P=0.018), higher HbA(1c) level (P=0.013) and lower HOMA-β (P=0.033) compared with subjects who had fewer risk alleles. We identified a significant association of a SNP of FADS1 and a SNP near PROX1 with T2D in a Japanese population. The present findings suggest that inclusion of SNPs with a tendency to increase the disease risk captured more of the genetic background of T2D than that revealed by only assessing significant SNPs.

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  1. Power and Autistic Traits

    PubMed Central

    Overskeid, Geir

    2016-01-01

    Autistic traits can help people gain and sustain power, and has probably done so throughout history, says the present paper. A number of testable claims follow from this assumption. First, the powerful should have more autistic traits than others – which they do appear to have. Among other things, powerful people, and those with many autistic traits, tend to prefer solitary activities and are often aloof. Moreover, they are often rigid and socially insensitive, low on empathy and with low scores on the trait of agreeableness – and as a rule they do not have many friends. Both groups are also more self-centered than others, more honest, less submissive, more sensitive to slights, and with a stronger tendency to engage in abstract thinking. They tend to behave in bossy or dominant ways, and their moral judgment is more based on rules than on feelings. In addition to experimental evidence, I cite biographies showing that a surprising number of presidents, prime ministers and other powerful people seem to have had traits like those in question – and interestingly, in animals, leaders are often rigid and insensitive to group members’ needs and feelings, mostly acting the way they are themselves inclined to, not responding much to others. Problem solving is important in leadership, and people with many autistic traits appear often to be better thinkers than typical subjects with similar IQs. However, these and other congruities could be coincidences. Hence the question of whether traits the two groups have in common also have a common cause constitutes a strong test of the paper’s thesis – and a common cause does appear to exist, in the form of testosterone’s effects on the central nervous system. Finally, there is evidence that, other things equal, powerful men have more reproductive success than others. If men wielding power do indeed have more autistic traits than those less powerful, this will lead to, other things equal, such traits becoming more

  2. Power and Autistic Traits

    PubMed Central

    Overskeid, Geir

    2016-01-01

    Autistic traits can help people gain and sustain power, and has probably done so throughout history, says the present paper. A number of testable claims follow from this assumption. First, the powerful should have more autistic traits than others – which they do appear to have. Among other things, powerful people, and those with many autistic traits, tend to prefer solitary activities and are often aloof. Moreover, they are often rigid and socially insensitive, low on empathy and with low scores on the trait of agreeableness – and as a rule they do not have many friends. Both groups are also more self-centered than others, more honest, less submissive, more sensitive to slights, and with a stronger tendency to engage in abstract thinking. They tend to behave in bossy or dominant ways, and their moral judgment is more based on rules than on feelings. In addition to experimental evidence, I cite biographies showing that a surprising number of presidents, prime ministers and other powerful people seem to have had traits like those in question – and interestingly, in animals, leaders are often rigid and insensitive to group members’ needs and feelings, mostly acting the way they are themselves inclined to, not responding much to others. Problem solving is important in leadership, and people with many autistic traits appear often to be better thinkers than typical subjects with similar IQs. However, these and other congruities could be coincidences. Hence the question of whether traits the two groups have in common also have a common cause constitutes a strong test of the paper’s thesis – and a common cause does appear to exist, in the form of testosterone’s effects on the central nervous system. Finally, there is evidence that, other things equal, powerful men have more reproductive success than others. If men wielding power do indeed have more autistic traits than those less powerful, this will lead to, other things equal, such traits becoming more

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

    PubMed Central

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

    1995-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Bhattacharyya, Paromik; Kumaria, Suman; Tandon, Pramod

    2015-09-01

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

  5. Association of environmental traits with the geographic ranges of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) of medical and veterinary importance in the western Palearctic. A digital data set.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, A; Farkas, Robert; Jaenson, Thomas G T; Koenen, Frank; Madder, Maxime; Pascucci, Ilaria; Salman, Mo; Tarrés-Call, Jordi; Jongejan, Frans

    2013-03-01

    We compiled information on the distribution of ticks in the western Palearctic (11°W, 45°E; 29°N, 71°N), published during 1970-2010. The literature search was filtered by the tick's species name and an unambiguous reference to the point of capture. Records from some curated collections were included. We focused on tick species of importance to human and animal health, in particular: Ixodes ricinus, Dermacentor marginatus, D. reticulatus, Haemaphysalis punctata, H. sulcata, Hyalomma marginatum, Hy. lusitanicum, Rhipicephalus annulatus, R. bursa, and the R. sanguineus group. A few records of other species (I. canisuga, I. hexagonus, Hy. impeltatum, Hy. anatolicum, Hy. excavatum, Hy. scupense) were also included. A total of 10,280 records was included in the data set. Almost 42 % of published references are not adequately referenced (and not included in the data set), host is reported for only 61 % of records and a reference to time of collection is missed for 84 % of published records. Ixodes ricinus accounted for 44.3 % of total records, with H. marginatum and D. marginatus accounting for 7.1 and 8.1 % of records, respectively. The lack of homogeneity of the references and potential pitfalls in the compilation were addressed to create a digital data set of the records of the ticks. We attached to every record a coherent set of quantitative descriptors for the site of reporting, namely gridded interpolated monthly climate and remotely sensed data on vegetation (NDVI). We also attached categorical descriptors of the habitat: a standard classification of land biomes and an ad hoc classification of the target territory from remotely sensed temperature and NDVI data. A descriptive analysis of the data revealed that a principal components reduction of the environmental (temperature and NDVI) variables described the distribution of the species in the target territory. However, categorical descriptors of the habitat were less effective. We stressed the importance of

  6. Landscape heterogeneity as an ecological filter of species traits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duflot, Rémi; Georges, Romain; Ernoult, Aude; Aviron, Stéphanie; Burel, Françoise

    2014-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Majchrowicz, T. Alexander; Hopkins, David E.

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

  10. Increased intracellular calcium level and impaired nutrient absorption are important pathogenicity traits in the chicken intestinal epithelium during Campylobacter jejuni colonization.

    PubMed

    Awad, Wageha A; Smorodchenko, Alina; Hess, Claudia; Aschenbach, Jörg R; Molnár, Andor; Dublecz, Károly; Khayal, Basel; Pohl, Elena E; Hess, Michael

    2015-08-01

    intestinal function, performance, and Campylobacter colonization. Altogether, these findings indicate that Campylobacter is not entirely a commensal and can be recognized as an important factor contributing to an impaired chicken gut health.

  11. Biotechnology and Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kenney, Martin

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

  12. Phylogenetic conservatism of functional traits in microorganisms.

    PubMed

    Martiny, Adam C; Treseder, Kathleen; Pusch, Gordon

    2013-04-01

    A central question in biology is how biodiversity influences ecosystem functioning. Underlying this is the relationship between organismal phylogeny and the presence of specific functional traits. The relationship is complicated by gene loss and convergent evolution, resulting in the polyphyletic distribution of many traits. In microorganisms, lateral gene transfer can further distort the linkage between phylogeny and the presence of specific functional traits. To identify the phylogenetic conservation of specific traits in microorganisms, we developed a new phylogenetic metric-consenTRAIT-to estimate the clade depth where organisms share a trait. We then analyzed the distribution of 89 functional traits across a broad range of Bacteria and Archaea using genotypic and phenotypic data. A total of 93% of the traits were significantly non-randomly distributed, which suggested that vertical inheritance was generally important for the phylogenetic dispersion of functional traits in microorganisms. Further, traits in microbes were associated with a continuum of trait depths (τD), ranging from a few deep to many shallow clades (average τD: 0.101-0.0011 rRNA sequence dissimilarity). Next, we demonstrated that the dispersion and the depth of clades that contain a trait is correlated with the trait's complexity. Specifically, complex traits encoded by many genes like photosynthesis and methanogenesis were found in a few deep clusters, whereas the ability to use simple carbon substrates was highly phylogenetically dispersed. On the basis of these results, we propose a framework for predicting the phylogenetic conservatism of functional traits depending on the complexity of the trait. This framework enables predicting how variation in microbial composition may affect microbially-mediated ecosystem processes as well as linking phylogenetic and trait-based patterns of biogeography.

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

    SciTech Connect

    Northwest Economic Associates.

    1989-05-01

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-05-01

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

  15. Sickle Cell Trait

    MedlinePlus

    ... About Us Information For... Media Policy Makers Sickle Cell Trait Language: English Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook ... the trait on to their children. How Sickle Cell Trait is Inherited If both parents have SCT, ...

  16. The Trait in Latent Trait Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levine, Michael V.

    Significant to a latent trait or item response theory analysis of a mental test is the determination of exactly what is being quantified. The following are practical problems to be considered in the formulation of a good theory: (1) deciding whether two tests measure the same trait or traits; (2) analyzing the relative contributions of a pair of…

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-02-24

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

  19. Genetics of complex traits: prediction of phenotype, identification of causal polymorphisms and genetic architecture.

    PubMed

    Goddard, M E; Kemper, K E; MacLeod, I M; Chamberlain, A J; Hayes, B J

    2016-07-27

    Complex or quantitative traits are important in medicine, agriculture and evolution, yet, until recently, few of the polymorphisms that cause variation in these traits were known. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS), based on the ability to assay thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), have revolutionized our understanding of the genetics of complex traits. We advocate the analysis of GWAS data by a statistical method that fits all SNP effects simultaneously, assuming that these effects are drawn from a prior distribution. We illustrate how this method can be used to predict future phenotypes, to map and identify the causal mutations, and to study the genetic architecture of complex traits. The genetic architecture of complex traits is even more complex than previously thought: in almost every trait studied there are thousands of polymorphisms that explain genetic variation. Methods of predicting future phenotypes, collectively known as genomic selection or genomic prediction, have been widely adopted in livestock and crop breeding, leading to increased rates of genetic improvement. PMID:27440663

  20. Genetics of complex traits: prediction of phenotype, identification of causal polymorphisms and genetic architecture

    PubMed Central

    Goddard, M. E.; Kemper, K. E.; MacLeod, I. M.; Chamberlain, A. J.; Hayes, B. J.

    2016-01-01

    Complex or quantitative traits are important in medicine, agriculture and evolution, yet, until recently, few of the polymorphisms that cause variation in these traits were known. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS), based on the ability to assay thousands of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), have revolutionized our understanding of the genetics of complex traits. We advocate the analysis of GWAS data by a statistical method that fits all SNP effects simultaneously, assuming that these effects are drawn from a prior distribution. We illustrate how this method can be used to predict future phenotypes, to map and identify the causal mutations, and to study the genetic architecture of complex traits. The genetic architecture of complex traits is even more complex than previously thought: in almost every trait studied there are thousands of polymorphisms that explain genetic variation. Methods of predicting future phenotypes, collectively known as genomic selection or genomic prediction, have been widely adopted in livestock and crop breeding, leading to increased rates of genetic improvement. PMID:27440663

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-01

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

  2. Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that specialty crops are a vital part of agriculture in the United States, that the Committee on Agriculture should propose funding for programs that support specialty crops priorities, and that legislation should be passed that includes funding reflecting specialty crops as a growing and important part of United States agriculture.

    THOMAS, 113th Congress

    Rep. DelBene, Suzan K. [D-WA-1

    2013-04-25

    05/03/2013 Referred to the Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology, and Foreign Agriculture. (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-05-01

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

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

    SciTech Connect

    Gantar, Miroslav

    1999-03-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Chitrampalam, P; Nelson, B

    2016-02-01

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

  6. Grassland agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  7. Uncertainty quantified trait predictions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2015-04-01

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

  8. QTLs for Biomass and Developmental Traits in Switchgrass (Panicum virgatum)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic and genomic resources have recently been developed for the bioenergy crop switchgrass (Panicum virgatum). Despite these advances, little research has been focused on identifying genetic loci involved in natural variation of important bioenergy traits, including biomass. Quantitative trait l...

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-09-01

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

  11. Agricultural Production.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

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

  12. Motivational Traits of Elite Young Soccer Players

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Craig; Meyers, Michael C.

    2004-01-01

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

  13. Valence Effects in Reasoning About Evaluative Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heyman, Gail D.; Giles, Jessica W.

    2004-01-01

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

  14. Multiple Trait Analysis of Genetic Mapping for Quantitative Trait Loci

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, C.; Zeng, Z. B.

    1995-01-01

    We present in this paper models and statistical methods for performing multiple trait analysis on mapping quantitative trait loci (QTL) based on the composite interval mapping method. By taking into account the correlated structure of multiple traits, this joint analysis has several advantages, compared with separate analyses, for mapping QTL, including the expected improvement on the statistical power of the test for QTL and on the precision of parameter estimation. Also this joint analysis provides formal procedures to test a number of biologically interesting hypotheses concerning the nature of genetic correlations between different traits. Among the testing procedures considered are those for joint mapping, pleiotropy, QTL by environment interaction, and pleiotropy vs. close linkage. The test of pleiotropy (one pleiotropic QTL at a genome position) vs. close linkage (multiple nearby nonpleiotropic QTL) can have important implications for our understanding of the nature of genetic correlations between different traits in certain regions of a genome and also for practical applications in animal and plant breeding because one of the major goals in breeding is to break unfavorable linkage. Results of extensive simulation studies are presented to illustrate various properties of the analyses. PMID:7672582

  15. Agricultural Roots in the Biological Sciences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laughlin, Charles W.; And Others

    1978-01-01

    A wide variety of careers related to agriculture and based on studies of the biological sciences are discussed. The importance of agriculture in our society as well as the educational means to an agricultural career are outlined. (MDR)

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-04-01

    Legumes play an important role in the traditional diets of many regions throughout the world because they provide a multitude of benefits to both the soil and other crops grown in combination with them or following them in several cropping systems. The ability of legumes to fix atmospheric nitrogen in association with rhizobia gives them the capacity to grow in very degraded soils. But do we have to systematically inoculate legumes? For example our results suggested that the systematic inoculation of both cowpea and green gram in Kenya with commercial inoculants to improve yields is not really justified, native strains performing better than inoculated strains. But when native rhizobia nodulating legumes are not naturally present, application of rhizobial inoculants is very commonly used. Our results showed that the utilization of effective good-quality rhizobial inoculants by farmers have a real potential to improve legume yields in unfertile soils requesting high applications of mineral fertilizers. For example an effective soybean commercial inoculants was tested in different locations in Kenya (in about 150 farms in 3 mandate areas presenting different soil characteristics and environmental conditions). Application of the rhizobial inoculant significantly increased the soybean yields in all mandate areas (about 75% of the farms). Nodule occupancy analysis showed that a high number of nodules occupied by the inoculated strain did not obviously lead to an increase of soybean production. Soil factors (pH, P, C, N…) seemed to affect the inoculant efficiency whether the strain is occupying the nodules or not. Our statistic analysis showed that soil pH significantly affected nodulation and yield, though the effect was variable depending on the region. We concluded that the competitiveness of rhizobial strains might not be the main factor explaining the effect (or lack of) of legumes inoculation in the field. Another study was aiming to assess if several factors

  17. The Effects of Aphid Traits on Parasitoid Host Use and Specialist Advantage

    PubMed Central

    Gagic, Vesna; Petrović-Obradović, Olivera; Fründ, Jochen; Kavallieratos, Nickolas G.; Athanassiou, Christos G.; Starý, Petr; Tomanović, Željko

    2016-01-01

    Specialization is a central concept in ecology and one of the fundamental properties of parasitoids. Highly specialized parasitoids tend to be more efficient in host-use compared to generalized parasitoids, presumably owing to the trade-off between host range and host-use efficiency. However, it remains unknown how parasitoid host specificity and host-use depends on host traits related to susceptibility to parasitoid attack. To address this question, we used data from a 13-year survey of interactions among 142 aphid and 75 parasitoid species in nine European countries. We found that only aphid traits related to local resource characteristics seem to influence the trade-off between host-range and efficiency: more specialized parasitoids had an apparent advantage (higher abundance on shared hosts) on aphids with sparse colonies, ant-attendance and without concealment, and this was more evident when host relatedness was included in calculation of parasitoid specificity. More traits influenced average assemblage specialization, which was highest in aphids that are monophagous, monoecious, large, highly mobile (easily drop from a plant), without myrmecophily, habitat specialists, inhabit non-agricultural habitats and have sparse colonies. Differences in aphid wax production did not influence parasitoid host specificity and host-use. Our study is the first step in identifying host traits important for aphid parasitoid host specificity and host-use and improves our understanding of bottom-up effects of aphid traits on aphid-parasitoid food web structure. PMID:27309729

  18. The Effects of Aphid Traits on Parasitoid Host Use and Specialist Advantage.

    PubMed

    Gagic, Vesna; Petrović-Obradović, Olivera; Fründ, Jochen; Kavallieratos, Nickolas G; Athanassiou, Christos G; Starý, Petr; Tomanović, Željko

    2016-01-01

    Specialization is a central concept in ecology and one of the fundamental properties of parasitoids. Highly specialized parasitoids tend to be more efficient in host-use compared to generalized parasitoids, presumably owing to the trade-off between host range and host-use efficiency. However, it remains unknown how parasitoid host specificity and host-use depends on host traits related to susceptibility to parasitoid attack. To address this question, we used data from a 13-year survey of interactions among 142 aphid and 75 parasitoid species in nine European countries. We found that only aphid traits related to local resource characteristics seem to influence the trade-off between host-range and efficiency: more specialized parasitoids had an apparent advantage (higher abundance on shared hosts) on aphids with sparse colonies, ant-attendance and without concealment, and this was more evident when host relatedness was included in calculation of parasitoid specificity. More traits influenced average assemblage specialization, which was highest in aphids that are monophagous, monoecious, large, highly mobile (easily drop from a plant), without myrmecophily, habitat specialists, inhabit non-agricultural habitats and have sparse colonies. Differences in aphid wax production did not influence parasitoid host specificity and host-use. Our study is the first step in identifying host traits important for aphid parasitoid host specificity and host-use and improves our understanding of bottom-up effects of aphid traits on aphid-parasitoid food web structure. PMID:27309729

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zuellig, Robert E.; Schmidt, Travis S.

    2012-01-01

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

  20. 7 CFR 1260.117 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1260.117 Section 1260.117 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS... Promotion and Research Order Definitions § 1260.117 Importer. Importer means any person who imports...

  1. 7 CFR 1230.12 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1230.12 Section 1230.12 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS... Importer. Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the...

  2. Agricultural Wastes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    1978-01-01

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

  3. VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    California State Dept. of Education, Sacramento. Research Coordinating Unit.

    TO ASSIST THOSE WHO MAKE DECISIONS RELATING TO EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS IN AGRICULTURE, RECENT RESEARCH IN VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE IS SUMMARIZED. A 1963 STUDY TREATS THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN WORK EXPERIENCE AND STUDENT CHARACTERISTICS, PLANS, AND ASPIRATIONS. STUDIES ON POST-SECONDARY EDUCATION CONCERN GUIDELINES FOR TECHNICIAN PROGRAMS, JUSTIFICATION…

  4. FishTraits Database

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Angermeier, Paul L.; Frimpong, Emmanuel A.

    2009-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-12-01

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

  6. Towards an evolutionary ecology of sexual traits.

    PubMed

    Cornwallis, Charlie K; Uller, Tobias

    2010-03-01

    Empirical studies of sexual traits continue to generate conflicting results, leading to a growing awareness that the current understanding of this topic is limited. Here we argue that this is because studies of sexual traits fail to encompass three important features of evolution. First, sexual traits evolve via natural selection of which sexual selection is just one part. Second, selection on sexual traits fluctuates in strength, direction and form due to spatial and temporal environmental heterogeneity. Third, phenotypic plasticity is ubiquitous and generates selection and responses to selection within and across generations. A move from purely gene-focused theories of sexual selection towards research that explicitly integrates development, ecology and evolution is necessary to break the stasis in research on sexual traits.

  7. A functional trait perspective on plant invasion

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  8. Relating Stomatal Conductance to Leaf Functional Traits

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Relating Stomatal Conductance to Leaf Functional Traits.

    PubMed

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

    2015-10-12

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

  10. Agriculture Education. Agricultural Metal Working.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

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

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

    PubMed Central

    Fort, Florian; Jouany, Claire; Cruz, Pablo

    2015-01-01

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

  12. 7 CFR 1205.19 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1205.19 Section 1205.19 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS... Procedures for Conduct of Sign-up Period Definitions § 1205.19 Importer. The term importer means any...

  13. 7 CFR 1205.310 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1205.310 Section 1205.310 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS... Research and Promotion Order Definitions § 1205.310 Importer. Importer means many person who enters,...

  14. Agricultural Microbiology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brill, Winston J.

    1981-01-01

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

  15. Agricultural Geophysics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  16. Urban conservation agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  17. 7 CFR 201.38 - Importations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

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

  18. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

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

  19. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

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

  20. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

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

  1. Generalized Latent Trait Models.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moustaki, Irini; Knott, Martin

    2000-01-01

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

  2. Reinforcing loose foundation stones in trait-based plant ecology.

    PubMed

    Shipley, Bill; De Bello, Francesco; Cornelissen, J Hans C; Laliberté, Etienne; Laughlin, Daniel C; Reich, Peter B

    2016-04-01

    The promise of "trait-based" plant ecology is one of generalized prediction across organizational and spatial scales, independent of taxonomy. This promise is a major reason for the increased popularity of this approach. Here, we argue that some important foundational assumptions of trait-based ecology have not received sufficient empirical evaluation. We identify three such assumptions and, where possible, suggest methods of improvement: (i) traits are functional to the degree that they determine individual fitness, (ii) intraspecific variation in functional traits can be largely ignored, and (iii) functional traits show general predictive relationships to measurable environmental gradients.

  3. Going underground: root traits as drivers of ecosystem processes.

    PubMed

    Bardgett, Richard D; Mommer, Liesje; De Vries, Franciska T

    2014-12-01

    Ecologists are increasingly adopting trait-based approaches to understand how community change influences ecosystem processes. However, most of this research has focussed on aboveground plant traits, whereas it is becoming clear that root traits are important drivers of many ecosystem processes, such as carbon (C) and nutrient cycling, and the formation and structural stability of soil. Here, we synthesise emerging evidence that illustrates how root traits impact ecosystem processes, and propose a pathway to unravel the complex roles of root traits in driving ecosystem processes and their response to global change. Finally, we identify research challenges and novel technologies to address them. PMID:25459399

  4. Reinforcing loose foundation stones in trait-based plant ecology.

    PubMed

    Shipley, Bill; De Bello, Francesco; Cornelissen, J Hans C; Laliberté, Etienne; Laughlin, Daniel C; Reich, Peter B

    2016-04-01

    The promise of "trait-based" plant ecology is one of generalized prediction across organizational and spatial scales, independent of taxonomy. This promise is a major reason for the increased popularity of this approach. Here, we argue that some important foundational assumptions of trait-based ecology have not received sufficient empirical evaluation. We identify three such assumptions and, where possible, suggest methods of improvement: (i) traits are functional to the degree that they determine individual fitness, (ii) intraspecific variation in functional traits can be largely ignored, and (iii) functional traits show general predictive relationships to measurable environmental gradients. PMID:26796410

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-20

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-20

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

  8. Agricultural Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Postance, Jim

    1998-01-01

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

  9. AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    STEVENS, GLENN Z.

    FEDERAL LEGISLATION HAS PROVIDED FOR PUBLIC PROGRAMS OF OCCUPATIONAL AGRICULTURE EDUCATION IN LAND GRANT COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES, LOCAL SCHOOL DISTRICTS, AND MANPOWER DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS. PROGRAM OBJECTIVES SHOULD BE TO DEVELOP KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS, PROVIDE OCCUPATIONAL GUIDANCE AND PLACEMENT, AND DEVELOP ABILITIES IN HUMAN RELATIONS AND…

  10. AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    FARQUHAR, R.N.

    AUSTRALIAN AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION HAS LONG EMPHASIZED TECHNICAL ADVISORY SERVICE AT THE EXPENSE OF THE SOCIOECONOMIC ASPECTS OF FARM PRODUCTION AND FARM LIFE. ONLY IN TASMANIA HAS FARM MANAGEMENT BEEN STRESSED. DEMANDS FOR THE WHOLE-FARM APPROACH HAVE PRODUCED A TREND TOWARD GENERALISM FOR DISTRICT OFFICERS IN MOST STATES. THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT,…

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. The Trait Psychology Controversy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morgan, William P.

    1980-01-01

    Arguments associated with trait psychology are reviewed with an application in the field of sport psychology. The role of cognition and perception in sport and physical activities is also discussed. (CJ)

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Association mapping of leaf traits in spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) is an important leafy vegetable crop grown world-wide. Leaf traits, surface texture (smooth vs. savoy or semi-savoy), petiole color (green vs. purple), and edge shape (serrate vs. entire) are important for spinach. Association mapping of the three traits were conducted...

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

    PubMed

    Frick, Paul J; Ray, James V

    2015-12-01

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

  16. Privatising Agricultural Extension: Caveat Emptor.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kidd, A. D.; Lamers, J. P. A.; Ficarelli, P. P.; Hoffmann, V.

    2000-01-01

    Discusses forces promoting privatization of agricultural extension. Discusses experiences of privatization and commercialization of extension and related problems in various countries, particularly developing countries. Suggests that the state will continue to play an important role in agricultural extension in many countries and that…

  17. Agricultural Education Curricula in the Middle School.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rexrode, Carl L.

    1980-01-01

    Defining the terms middle school and curriculum, the author then gives suggestions for planning the agricultural education curriculum for middle schools. Important responsibilities of the vocational agriculture teacher are discussed. (SK)

  18. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... Inspection of Eggs Imports § 57.920 Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs. Each...

  19. Genetic mapping and QTL analysis of agronomic traits in Indian Mucuna pruriens using an intraspecific F₂population.

    PubMed

    Mahesh, S; Leelambika, M; Jaheer, Md; Anithakumari, A M; Sathyanarayana, N

    2016-03-01

    Mucuna pruriens is a well-recognized agricultural and horticultural crop with important medicinal use. However, antinutritional factors in seed and adverse morphological characters have negatively affected its cultivation. To elucidate the genetic control of agronomic traits, an intraspecific genetic linkage map of Indian M. pruriens has been developed based on amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers using 200 F₂ progenies derived from a cross between wild and cultivated genotypes. The resulting linkage map comprised 129 AFLP markers dispersed over 13 linkage groups spanning a total distance of 618.88 cM with an average marker interval of 4.79 cM. For the first time, three QTLs explaining about 6.05-14.77% of the corresponding total phenotypic variation for three quantitative (seed) traits and, eight QTLs explaining about 25.96% of the corresponding total phenotypic variation for three qualitative traits have been detected on four linkage groups. The map presented here will pave a way for mapping of genes/QTLs for the important agronomic and horticultural traits contrasting between the parents used in this study. PMID:27019430

  20. Species traits and environmental characteristics together regulate ant-associated biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Kaitlin U; Crist, Thomas O

    2016-09-01

    Host-associated organisms (e.g., parasites, commensals, and mutualists) may rely on their hosts for only a portion of their life cycle. The life-history traits and physiology of hosts are well-known determinants of the biodiversity of their associated organisms. The environmental context may strongly influence this interaction, but the relative roles of host traits and the environment are poorly known for host-associated communities. We studied the roles of host traits and environmental characteristics affecting ant-associated mites in semi-natural constructed grasslands in agricultural landscapes of the Midwest USA. Mites are frequently found in ant nests and also riding on ants in a commensal dispersal relationship known as phoresy. During nonphoretic stages of their development, ant-associated mites rely on soil or nest resources, which may vary depending on host traits and the environmental context of the colony. We hypothesized that mite diversity is determined by availability of suitable host ant species, soil detrital resources and texture, and habitat disturbance. Results showed that that large-bodied and widely distributed ant species within grasslands support the most diverse mite assemblages. Mite richness and abundance were predicted by overall ant richness and grassland area, but host traits and environmental predictors varied among ant hosts: mites associated with Aphaenogaster rudis depended on litter depth, while Myrmica americana associates were predicted by host frequency and grassland age. Multivariate ordinations of mite community composition constructed with host ant species as predictors demonstrated host specialization at both the ant species and genus levels, while ordinations with environmental variables showed that ant richness, soil texture, and grassland age also contributed to mite community structure. Our results demonstrate that large-bodied, locally abundant, and cosmopolitan ant species are especially important regulators of

  1. Species traits and environmental characteristics together regulate ant-associated biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Kaitlin U; Crist, Thomas O

    2016-09-01

    Host-associated organisms (e.g., parasites, commensals, and mutualists) may rely on their hosts for only a portion of their life cycle. The life-history traits and physiology of hosts are well-known determinants of the biodiversity of their associated organisms. The environmental context may strongly influence this interaction, but the relative roles of host traits and the environment are poorly known for host-associated communities. We studied the roles of host traits and environmental characteristics affecting ant-associated mites in semi-natural constructed grasslands in agricultural landscapes of the Midwest USA. Mites are frequently found in ant nests and also riding on ants in a commensal dispersal relationship known as phoresy. During nonphoretic stages of their development, ant-associated mites rely on soil or nest resources, which may vary depending on host traits and the environmental context of the colony. We hypothesized that mite diversity is determined by availability of suitable host ant species, soil detrital resources and texture, and habitat disturbance. Results showed that that large-bodied and widely distributed ant species within grasslands support the most diverse mite assemblages. Mite richness and abundance were predicted by overall ant richness and grassland area, but host traits and environmental predictors varied among ant hosts: mites associated with Aphaenogaster rudis depended on litter depth, while Myrmica americana associates were predicted by host frequency and grassland age. Multivariate ordinations of mite community composition constructed with host ant species as predictors demonstrated host specialization at both the ant species and genus levels, while ordinations with environmental variables showed that ant richness, soil texture, and grassland age also contributed to mite community structure. Our results demonstrate that large-bodied, locally abundant, and cosmopolitan ant species are especially important regulators of

  2. Integrating microbial traits into ecosystem models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allison, S. D.

    2012-12-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2012-01-01

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

  4. Circadian clock genes universally control key agricultural traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  5. Quantitative trait locus analysis of multiple agronomic traits in the model legume Lotus japonicus.

    PubMed

    Gondo, Takahiro; Sato, Shusei; Okumura, Kenji; Tabata, Satoshi; Akashi, Ryo; Isobe, Sachiko

    2007-07-01

    The first quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis of multiple agronomic traits in the model legume Lotus japonicus was performed with a population of recombinant inbred lines derived from Miyakojima MG-20 x Gifu B-129. Thirteen agronomic traits were evaluated in 2004 and 2005: traits of vegetative parts (plant height, stem thickness, leaf length, leaf width, plant regrowth, plant shape, and stem color), flowering traits (flowering time and degree), and pod and seed traits (pod length, pod width, seeds per pod, and seed mass). A total of 40 QTLs were detected that explained 5%-69% of total variation. The QTL that explained the most variation was that for stem color, which was detected in the same region of chromosome 2 in both years. Some QTLs were colocated, especially those for pod and seed traits. Seed mass QTLs were located at 5 locations that mapped to the corresponding genomic positions of equivalent QTLs in soybean, pea, chickpea, and mung bean. This study provides fundamental information for breeding of agronomically important legume crops.

  6. Testing Trait Depression as a Potential Clinical Domain in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Chiappelli, Joshua; Kochunov, Peter; DeRiso, Katherine; Thangavelu, Kavita; Sampath, Hemalatha; Muellerklein, Florian; Nugent, Katie L.; Postolache, Teodor T.; Carpenter, William T.; Hong, L. Elliot

    2014-01-01

    The DSM-5 includes depression as a dimension of psychosis. We tested whether persistent experience of depression, called ‘trait depression’, is a clinical feature separate from psychosis and several well-known, trait-like deficits of schizophrenia. 126 individuals with schizophrenia and 151 control participants completed the Maryland Trait and State Depression questionnaire, with a subset completing measures of cognition and functional capacity, and diffusion tensor imaging (n=73 patients and 102 controls for imaging analysis). Subjectively experienced, longitudinal trait depression is significantly higher in patients with schizophrenia compared with controls. Higher trait depression scores were associated with more severe psychosis. Surprisingly, individuals with higher trait depression manifested less cognitive and global functioning deficits. In addition, trait depression scores were positively associated with fractional anisotropy of white matter. Trait depression appears to be a highly relevant clinical domain in the care of patients with schizophrenia that also has distinct relationships with some other known traits of the disease. Trait depression may be an important contributor to the clinical heterogeneity of schizophrenia. PMID:25171855

  7. Testing trait depression as a potential clinical domain in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Chiappelli, Joshua; Kochunov, Peter; DeRiso, Katherine; Thangavelu, Kavita; Sampath, Hemalatha; Muellerklein, Florian; Nugent, Katie L; Postolache, Teodor T; Carpenter, William T; Hong, L Elliot

    2014-10-01

    The DSM-5 includes depression as a dimension of psychosis. We tested whether persistent experience of depression, called 'trait depression', is a clinical feature separate from psychosis and several well-known, trait-like deficits of schizophrenia. 126 individuals with schizophrenia and 151 control participants completed the Maryland Trait and State Depression questionnaire, with a subset completing measures of cognition and functional capacity, and diffusion tensor imaging (n=73 patients and 102 controls for imaging analysis). Subjectively experienced, longitudinal trait depression is significantly higher in patients with schizophrenia compared with controls. Higher trait depression scores were associated with more severe psychosis. Surprisingly, individuals with higher trait depression manifested less cognitive and global functioning deficits. In addition, trait depression scores were positively associated with fractional anisotropy of white matter. Trait depression appears to be a highly relevant clinical domain in the care of patients with schizophrenia that also has distinct relationships with some other known traits of the disease. Trait depression may be an important contributor to the clinical heterogeneity of schizophrenia.

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Worth, S. H.

    2008-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-09-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-12-01

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

  12. Children's Reasoning about Norms and Traits as Motives for Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalish, Charles W.; Shiverick, Sean M.

    2004-01-01

    Two important sources of information for social judgments are personality dispositions (traits) and social norms. Existing research suggests that young children do not find traits salient. To what extent might they rely on a different source of information? Two experiments explored how information about preferences (what someone likes) and rules…

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

    SciTech Connect

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

    1993-11-01

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

  14. Evolving Trait Concepts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anastasi, Anne

    1983-01-01

    Redefines intelligence as a useful, comprehensive, and flexible construct that allows its modifiability as a function of age and culture. Reviews theories on two-factor, multiple-factor, facet, and hierarchical models of trait formation based on research in developmental, cross-cultural, learning, and cognitive psychology. (Author/AOS)

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

    PubMed

    Mavroveli, Stella; Sánchez-Ruiz, María José

    2011-03-01

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

  16. Antimicrobial Resistance in Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Thanner, Sophie; Drissner, David

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT In this article, the current knowledge and knowledge gaps in the emergence and spread of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in livestock and plants and importance in terms of animal and human health are discussed. Some recommendations are provided for generation of the data required in order to develop risk assessments for AMR within agriculture and for risks through the food chain to animals and humans. PMID:27094336

  17. Birth Order Positions and Personality Traits.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Mrízová, Katarína; Holasková, Edita; Öz, M Tufan; Jiskrová, Eva; Frébort, Ivo; Galuszka, Petr

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Mrízová, Katarína; Holasková, Edita; Öz, M Tufan; Jiskrová, Eva; Frébort, Ivo; Galuszka, Petr

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-04-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2010-01-01

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

  4. 7 CFR 1230.609 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PORK PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND... Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the United States....

  5. 7 CFR 1230.609 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PORK PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND... Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the United States....

  6. Ethics and Agricultural Education: Determining Needs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foster, Billye

    2000-01-01

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

  7. Transforming Agricultural Education for a Changing World

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Academies Press, 2009

    2009-01-01

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

  8. The long and the short of it: SD1 polymorphism and the evolution of growth trait divergence in U.S. weedy rice.

    PubMed

    Reagon, Michael; Thurber, Carrie S; Olsen, Kenneth M; Jia, Yulin; Caicedo, Ana L

    2011-09-01

    Growth-related traits, such as greater height, greater biomass, faster growth rate and early flowering, are thought to enhance competitiveness of agricultural weeds. However, weedy rice, a conspecific weed of cultivated rice (Oryza sativa L.), displays variation for growth traits. In the United States, separately evolved weedy rice groups have been shown to share genomic identity with exotic domesticated cultivars. Through a common garden experiment, we investigated whether growth trait divergence has occurred among U.S. weeds and their putative cultivated progenitors. We also determined polymorphism patterns in the growth candidate gene, SD1, to assess its possible role in the evolution of divergent phenotypes. We found considerable growth trait variation among weed groups, suggesting that growth trait convergence is not evident among weedy populations. Phenotypic divergence of weedy rice from cultivated ancestors is most apparent for flowering time. Introgression of a chromosomal block containing the SD1 allele from tropical japonica, the predominant U.S. rice cultivar, was detected in one weedy rice population and is associated with a change in growth patterns in this group. This study demonstrates the role of introgressive hybridization in evolutionary divergence of an important weed. PMID:21854475

  9. Systems genetics approaches to understand complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Civelek, Mete; Lusis, Aldons J.

    2014-01-01

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

  10. Affective Traits in Schizophrenia and Schizotypy

    PubMed Central

    Horan, William P.; Blanchard, Jack J.; Clark, Lee Anna; Green, Michael F.

    2008-01-01

    This article reviews empirical studies of affective traits in individuals with schizophrenia spectrum disorders, population-based investigations of vulnerability to psychosis, and genetic and psychometric high-risk samples. The review focuses on studies that use self-report trait questionnaires to assess Negative Affectivity (NA) and Positive Affectivity (PA), which are conceptualized in contemporary models of personality as broad, temperamentally-based dispositions to experience corresponding emotional states. Individuals with schizophrenia report a pattern of stably elevated NA and low PA throughout the illness course. Among affected individuals, these traits are associated with variability in several clinically important features, including functional outcome, quality of life, and stress reactivity. Furthermore, evidence that elevated NA and low PA (particularly the facet of anhedonia) predict the development of psychosis and are detectable in high-risk samples suggests that these traits play a role in vulnerability to schizophrenia, though they are implicated in other forms of psychopathology as well. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for treatment, etiological models, and future research to advance the study of affective traits in schizophrenia and schizotypy. PMID:18667393

  11. Agricultural biosecurity.

    PubMed

    Waage, J K; Mumford, J D

    2008-02-27

    The prevention and control of new pest and disease introductions is an agricultural challenge which is attracting growing public interest. This interest is in part driven by an impression that the threat is increasing, but there has been little analysis of the changing rates of biosecurity threat, and existing evidence is equivocal. Traditional biosecurity systems for animals and plants differ substantially but are beginning to converge. Bio-economic modelling of risk will be a valuable tool in guiding the allocation of limited resources for biosecurity. The future of prevention and management systems will be strongly influenced by new technology and the growing role of the private sector. Overall, today's biosecurity systems are challenged by changing national priorities regarding trade, by new concerns about environmental effects of biological invasions and by the question 'who pays?'. Tomorrow's systems may need to be quite different to be effective. We suggest three changes: an integration of plant and animal biosecurity around a common, proactive, risk-based approach; a greater focus on international cooperation to deal with threats at source; and a commitment to refocus biosecurity on building resilience to invasion into agroecosystems rather than building walls around them.

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

    PubMed Central

    Moyle, Leonie C; Muir, Christopher D

    2010-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-05-01

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

  15. Genetic mapping of quantitative trait loci affecting growth and carcass traits in F2 intercross chickens.

    PubMed

    Uemoto, Y; Sato, S; Odawara, S; Nokata, H; Oyamada, Y; Taguchi, Y; Yanai, S; Sasaki, O; Takahashi, H; Nirasawa, K; Kobayashi, E

    2009-03-01

    We constructed a chicken F(2) resource population to facilitate the genetic improvement of economically important traits, particularly growth and carcass traits. An F(2) population comprising 240 chickens obtained by crossing a Shamo (lean, lightweight Japanese native breed) male and White Plymouth Rock breed (fat, heavyweight broiler) females was measured for BW, carcass weight (CW), abdominal fat weight (AFW), breast muscle weight (BMW), and thigh muscle weight (TMW) and was used for genome-wide linkage and QTL analysis, using a total of 240 microsatellite markers. A total of 14 QTL were detected at a 5% chromosome-wide level, and 7 QTL were significant at a 5% experiment-wide level for the traits evaluated in the F(2) population. For growth traits, significant and suggestive QTL affecting BW (measured at 6 and 9 wk) and average daily gain were identified on similar regions of chromosomes 1 and 3. For carcass traits, the QTL effects on CW were detected on chromosomes 1 and 3, with the greatest F-ratio of 15.0 being obtained for CW on chromosome 3. Quantitative trait loci positions affecting BMW and TMW were not detected at the same loci as those detected for BMW percentage of CW and TMW percentage of CW. For AFW, QTL positions were detected at the same loci as those detected for AFW percentage of CW. The present study identified significant QTL affecting BW, CW, and AFW. PMID:19211515

  16. Clines in polygenic traits.

    PubMed

    Barton, N H

    1999-12-01

    This article outlines theoretical models of clines in additive polygenic traits, which are maintained by stabilizing selection towards a spatially varying optimum. Clines in the trait mean can be accurately predicted, given knowledge of the genetic variance. However, predicting the variance is difficult, because it depends on genetic details. Changes in genetic variance arise from changes in allele frequency, and in linkage disequilibria. Allele frequency changes dominate when selection is weak relative to recombination, and when there are a moderate number of loci. With a continuum of alleles, gene flow inflates the genetic variance in the same way as a source of mutations of small effect. The variance can be approximated by assuming a Gaussian distribution of allelic effects; with a sufficiently steep cline, this is accurate even when mutation and selection alone are better described by the 'House of Cards' approximation. With just two alleles at each locus, the phenotype changes in a similar way: the mean remains close to the optimum, while the variance changes more slowly, and over a wider region. However, there may be substantial cryptic divergence at the underlying loci. With strong selection and many loci, linkage disequilibria are the main cause of changes in genetic variance. Even for strong selection, the infinitesimal model can be closely approximated by assuming a Gaussian distribution of breeding values. Linkage disequilibria can generate a substantial increase in genetic variance, which is concentrated at sharp gradients in trait means.

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

    PubMed

    Jackson, Kathryn A; Berg, Jolene M; Murray, James D; Maga, Elizabeth A

    2010-12-01

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

  18. Trait Emotional Intelligence and Personality

    PubMed Central

    Furnham, Adrian; Petrides, K. V.

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated if the linkages between trait emotional intelligence (trait EI) and the Five-Factor Model of personality were invariant between men and women. Five English-speaking samples (N = 307-685) of mostly undergraduate students each completed a different measure of the Big Five personality traits and either the full form or short form of the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire (TEIQue). Across samples, models predicting global TEIQue scores from the Big Five were invariant between genders, with Neuroticism and Extraversion being the strongest trait EI correlates, followed by Conscientiousness, Agreeableness, and Openness. However, there was some evidence indicating that the gender-specific contributions of the Big Five to trait EI vary depending on the personality measure used, being more consistent for women. Discussion focuses on the validity of the TEIQue as a measure of trait EI and its psychometric properties, more generally. PMID:25866439

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-03-29

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

  2. Identifying the future needs for long-term USDA efforts in agricultural animal genomics.

    PubMed

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

    2007-02-10

    Agricultural animal research has been immensely successful over the past century in developing technology and methodologies that have dramatically enhanced production efficiency of the beef, dairy, swine, poultry, sheep, and aquaculture industries. In the past two decades, molecular biology has changed the face of agricultural animal research, primarily in the arena of genomics and the relatively new offshoot areas of functional genomics, proteomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics and metagenomics. Publication of genetic and physical genome maps in the past 15 years has given rise to the possibility of being able finally to understand the molecular nature of the genetic component of phenotypic variation. While quantitative geneticists have been remarkably successful in improving production traits, genomic technology holds potential for being able to lead to more accurate and rapid animal improvement, especially for phenotypic traits that are difficult to measure.Recently, the agricultural research community has been able to capitalize on the infrastructure built by the human genome project by sequencing two of the major livestock genomes (Gallus domesticus and Bos Taurus). The 2005 calendar year is truly unprecedented in the history of agricultural animal research since draft genome sequences were completed for chickens and cattle. In addition, sequencing the swine and equine genome was initiated in early 2006. We now have in place a powerful toolbox for understanding the genetic variation underlying economically important and complex phenotypes. Over the past few years, new challenges have emerged for animal agriculture. Enhancements in production efficiency have not come without some negative side effects on animal well-being and longevity in production environments, including losses in reproductive efficiency, increased stress susceptibility, increased animal waste issues, and increased susceptibility to animal metabolic and infectious diseases. When considered

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

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

    2013-01-01

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

  4. Programs in Animal Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herring, Don R.; And Others

    1980-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

  8. Traits and Trade-Offs Are an Important Tier

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nettle, Daniel

    2007-01-01

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

  9. Economics of selecting for sex: the most important genetic trait.

    PubMed

    Seidel, G E

    2003-01-15

    Over 20,000 calves have resulted from artificial insemination (AI) of cattle with sexed, frozen/thawed sperm in the course of experimentation in several countries, and from commercial sales in the United Kingdom. This technology likely will become commercially available in many countries within a few years. Accuracy of the process is about 90% for either sex, and resulting calves appear to be no different from non-sexed controls in birthweight, mortality, rate of gain, and incidence of abnormalities. The main determinants of the extent of use of sexed sperm will be pregnancy rate and cost. Fertility of low doses (1.5 x 10(6)-2 x 10(6)) of sexed, frozen sperm for AI of heifers usually has been in the range of 70-80% of unsexed sperm at normal doses (10 x 10(6)-20 x 10(6) sperm) in well managed herds; it has been lower in poorly managed herds, and likely will be lower with lactating dairy cows. It is expected that fertility of sexed sperm will increase significantly due to very recent improvements in the hydrodynamics of the sexing process and potential improvements in cryopreservation procedures. It is unclear how sexed sperm will be priced; the cost of sexed sperm for cattle will likely be more than double the cost of unsexed sperm in most markets. The economic benefit of using sexed sperm also will depend on the baseline fertility of the herd since at lower fertility, it takes more doses of semen per calf produced. It is noted that for a small percentage of elite cattle, the economics of using sexed sperm do not depend primarily on increased production or efficiency of producing meat or milk, but rather on factors such as scarcity, tradition, cattle show winnings, and biosecurity during herd expansion. Until sorting efficiencies improve and costs decline, sales likely will be limited primarily to these niche markets. With near normal fertility and a premium for sexing in the range of US$ 10 per insemination dose, sexed sperm likely would become economically and environmentally beneficial for many, if not most populations of cattle being bred by AI. PMID:12499006

  10. On the fate of sexual traits under asexuality.

    PubMed

    van der Kooi, Casper J; Schwander, Tanja

    2014-11-01

    Environmental shifts and life-history changes may result in formerly adaptive traits becoming non-functional or maladaptive. In the absence of pleiotropy and other constraints, such traits may decay as a consequence of neutral mutation accumulation or selective processes, highlighting the importance of natural selection for adaptations. A suite of traits are expected to lose their adaptive function in asexual organisms derived from sexual ancestors, and the many independent transitions to asexuality allow for comparative studies of parallel trait maintenance versus decay. In addition, because certain traits, notably male-specific traits, are usually not exposed to selection under asexuality, their decay would have to occur as a consequence of drift. Selective processes could drive the decay of traits associated with costs, which may be the case for the majority of sexual traits expressed in females. We review the fate of male and female sexual traits in 93 animal lineages characterized by asexual reproduction, covering a broad taxon range including molluscs, arachnids, diplopods, crustaceans and eleven different hexapod orders. Many asexual lineages are still able occasionally to produce males. These asexually produced males are often largely or even fully functional, revealing that major developmental pathways can remain quiescent and functional over extended time periods. By contrast, for asexual females, there is a parallel and rapid decay of sexual traits, especially of traits related to mate attraction and location, as expected given the considerable costs often associated with the expression of these traits. The level of decay of female sexual traits, in addition to asexual females being unable to fertilize their eggs, would severely impede reversals to sexual reproduction, even in recently derived asexual lineages. More generally, the parallel maintenance versus decay of different trait types across diverse asexual lineages suggests that neutral traits

  11. 78 FR 7387 - Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture; Renewal

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-01

    ... the expanding dimensions and importance of agricultural biotechnology. The AC21 has been established... issues related to the expanding dimensions and importance of agricultural biotechnology. Dated:...

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. Identification of quantitative trait transcripts for growth traits in the large scales of liver and muscle samples.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Xinwei; Yang, Hui; Yang, Bin; Chen, Congying; Huang, Lusheng

    2015-07-01

    Growth-related traits are economically important traits to the pig industry. Identification of causative gene and mutation responsible for growth-related QTL will facilitate the improvement of pig growth through marker-assisted selection. In this study, we applied whole genome gene expression and quantitative trait transcript (QTT) analyses in 497 liver and 586 longissimus dorsi muscle samples to identify candidate genes and dissect the genetic basis of pig growth in a white Duroc × Erhualian F2 resource population. A total of 20,108 transcripts in liver and 23,728 transcripts in muscle with expression values were used for association analysis between gene expression level and phenotypic value. At the significance threshold of P < 0.0005, we identified a total of 169 and 168 QTTs for nine growth-related traits in liver and muscle, respectively. We also found that some QTTs were correlated to more than one trait. The QTTs identified here showed high tissue specificity. We did not identify any QTTs that were associated with one trait in both liver and muscle. Through an integrative genomic approach, we identified SDR16C5 as the important candidate gene in pig growth trait. These findings contribute to further identification of the causative genes for porcine growth traits and facilitate improvement of pig breeding.

  14. Agricultural Education at Risk.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Evans, Donald E.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses educational reform in the context of agricultural education. Covers a recent report on agricultural education reform by the National Academy of Sciences, state legislative initiatives, and several recommendations for the future of agricultural education. (CH)

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

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guzel, N.

    2012-04-01

    The process of reduction of agrolandscapes has taken place some decades in the North-Western European Russia. During 100 last years the area of agricultural lands have reduced in 1,4 times on the Karelian Isthmus. The most part of it had been abandoned after change of State border after of the Second World War. The processes of overgrowing of the former agricultural lands are studied on the landscapes base. The types of landscapes are distinguished on the based of the morphological relief symptoms, characteristics of the structure rock and the humid regime. Agricultural lands occupy landscapes such as kames, sandy, sandy-loam, clayey plains, sometimes with excess moistening, sandy fluvioglacial plains, loamy morainic plains, mesotrophic and evtrophic peat-bogs. Four stages can be revealed. I - (period to 20 years after termination of agricultural use) - grass-herb meadow with unclosed brush II - (20 - 40) - shrub layer with closed or low-closed canopy and unclosed or low closed small-leaved regrowth III - (40 - 80) - closed small-leaved forest, sometime including the coniferous trees IY - predomination of the coniferous on small-leaved trees Reestablish vegetation successions can be realised by different ways, with different rate, including various trees and ecological groups of species in different landscapes. In the different sites many traits in common are discovered during this processes. The processes taking place in soil of abandoned agricultural lands are expressed more poorly than in vegetation as soil is more "conservative" element of landscape. Now most area occupies former agricultural lands, inhering on III stage and presenting itself small-leaved forest. Over the last decade because of a change in the socio-political situation there has emerged a tendency towards an increase in the area of the cultivated land in the Karelian Isthmus including the secondary development of previously abandoned lands. However, this process is going on spontaneously; there

  17. 7 CFR 1230.609 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1230.609 Section 1230.609 Agriculture... CONSUMER INFORMATION Procedures for the Conduct of Referendum Definitions § 1230.609 Importer. The term Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the United States....

  18. 7 CFR 1218.9 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1218.9 Section 1218.9 Agriculture... INFORMATION ORDER Blueberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order Definitions § 1218.9 Importer. Importer... importer of record for such blueberries....

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  20. Plant functional traits predict green roof ecosystem services.

    PubMed

    Lundholm, Jeremy; Tran, Stephanie; Gebert, Luke

    2015-02-17

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

  1. Plant functional traits predict green roof ecosystem services.

    PubMed

    Lundholm, Jeremy; Tran, Stephanie; Gebert, Luke

    2015-02-17

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

  2. Entomophagy and space agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

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

  3. Brain structure links trait creativity to openness to experience.

    PubMed

    Li, Wenfu; Li, Xueting; Huang, Lijie; Kong, Xiangzhen; Yang, Wenjing; Wei, Dongtao; Li, Jingguang; Cheng, Hongsheng; Zhang, Qinglin; Qiu, Jiang; Liu, Jia

    2015-02-01

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

  4. Brain structure links trait creativity to openness to experience

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  5. Agriculture and climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Abelson, P.H.

    1992-07-03

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

  6. A Source Area Approach Demonstrates Moderate Predictive Ability but Pronounced Variability of Invasive Species Traits.

    PubMed

    Klonner, Günther; Fischer, Stefan; Essl, Franz; Dullinger, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    The search for traits that make alien species invasive has mostly concentrated on comparing successful invaders and different comparison groups with respect to average trait values. By contrast, little attention has been paid to trait variability among invaders. Here, we combine an analysis of trait differences between invasive and non-invasive species with a comparison of multidimensional trait variability within these two species groups. We collected data on biological and distributional traits for 1402 species of the native, non-woody vascular plant flora of Austria. We then compared the subsets of species recorded and not recorded as invasive aliens anywhere in the world, respectively, first, with respect to the sampled traits using univariate and multiple regression models; and, second, with respect to their multidimensional trait diversity by calculating functional richness and dispersion metrics. Attributes related to competitiveness (strategy type, nitrogen indicator value), habitat use (agricultural and ruderal habitats, occurrence under the montane belt), and propagule pressure (frequency) were most closely associated with invasiveness. However, even the best multiple model, including interactions, only explained a moderate fraction of the differences in invasive success. In addition, multidimensional variability in trait space was even larger among invasive than among non-invasive species. This pronounced variability suggests that invasive success has a considerable idiosyncratic component and is probably highly context specific. We conclude that basing risk assessment protocols on species trait profiles will probably face hardly reducible uncertainties.

  7. A Source Area Approach Demonstrates Moderate Predictive Ability but Pronounced Variability of Invasive Species Traits

    PubMed Central

    Essl, Franz; Dullinger, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    The search for traits that make alien species invasive has mostly concentrated on comparing successful invaders and different comparison groups with respect to average trait values. By contrast, little attention has been paid to trait variability among invaders. Here, we combine an analysis of trait differences between invasive and non-invasive species with a comparison of multidimensional trait variability within these two species groups. We collected data on biological and distributional traits for 1402 species of the native, non-woody vascular plant flora of Austria. We then compared the subsets of species recorded and not recorded as invasive aliens anywhere in the world, respectively, first, with respect to the sampled traits using univariate and multiple regression models; and, second, with respect to their multidimensional trait diversity by calculating functional richness and dispersion metrics. Attributes related to competitiveness (strategy type, nitrogen indicator value), habitat use (agricultural and ruderal habitats, occurrence under the montane belt), and propagule pressure (frequency) were most closely associated with invasiveness. However, even the best multiple model, including interactions, only explained a moderate fraction of the differences in invasive success. In addition, multidimensional variability in trait space was even larger among invasive than among non-invasive species. This pronounced variability suggests that invasive success has a considerable idiosyncratic component and is probably highly context specific. We conclude that basing risk assessment protocols on species trait profiles will probably face hardly reducible uncertainties. PMID:27187616

  8. A Source Area Approach Demonstrates Moderate Predictive Ability but Pronounced Variability of Invasive Species Traits.

    PubMed

    Klonner, Günther; Fischer, Stefan; Essl, Franz; Dullinger, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    The search for traits that make alien species invasive has mostly concentrated on comparing successful invaders and different comparison groups with respect to average trait values. By contrast, little attention has been paid to trait variability among invaders. Here, we combine an analysis of trait differences between invasive and non-invasive species with a comparison of multidimensional trait variability within these two species groups. We collected data on biological and distributional traits for 1402 species of the native, non-woody vascular plant flora of Austria. We then compared the subsets of species recorded and not recorded as invasive aliens anywhere in the world, respectively, first, with respect to the sampled traits using univariate and multiple regression models; and, second, with respect to their multidimensional trait diversity by calculating functional richness and dispersion metrics. Attributes related to competitiveness (strategy type, nitrogen indicator value), habitat use (agricultural and ruderal habitats, occurrence under the montane belt), and propagule pressure (frequency) were most closely associated with invasiveness. However, even the best multiple model, including interactions, only explained a moderate fraction of the differences in invasive success. In addition, multidimensional variability in trait space was even larger among invasive than among non-invasive species. This pronounced variability suggests that invasive success has a considerable idiosyncratic component and is probably highly context specific. We conclude that basing risk assessment protocols on species trait profiles will probably face hardly reducible uncertainties. PMID:27187616

  9. Foundation species influence trait-based community assembly.

    PubMed

    Schöb, Christian; Butterfield, Bradley J; Pugnaire, Francisco I

    2012-11-01

    Here, we incorporate facilitation into trait-based community assembly theory by testing two mutually compatible facilitative mechanisms: changes in the environmental filter, causing either an increase in the range of trait values (i.e. a range expansion effect) and/or a shift in trait distributions (i.e. a range shift effect); and changes in trait spacing, suggesting an effect on niche differentiation. We analyzed the distribution of three functional traits - leaf dry matter content, specific leaf area and lateral spread - of plant communities dominated by a cushion-forming foundation species at four sites differing in elevation and aspect. We found support for environmental filtering and niche differentiation mechanisms by cushions, with filtering effects (in particular range shifts) increasing with environmental severity at higher elevation. The effect size of cushions on trait distribution was similar to that of environmental gradients caused by elevation and aspect. The consideration of intraspecific trait variability improved the detection of cushion effects on trait distributions. Our results highlight the importance of facilitation in the modification of taxonomic and functional diversity of ecological communities, and indicate that facilitation can occur through combined effects on environmental filtering and niche differentiation, with strong environmental context dependence of each mechanism.

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

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harrison, Kenneth M.; And Others

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  12. Multi-scale associations between vegetation cover and woodland bird communities across a large agricultural region.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  13. Phenotyping nutritional and antinutritional traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

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

    PubMed

    Devos, Yann; Hails, Rosemary S; Messéan, Antoine; Perry, Joe N; Squire, Geoffrey R

    2012-02-01

    One of the concerns surrounding the import (for food and feed uses or processing) of genetically modified herbicide tolerant (GMHT) oilseed rape is that, through seed spillage, the herbicide tolerance (HT) trait will escape into agricultural or semi-natural habitats, causing environmental or economic problems. Based on these concerns, three EU countries have invoked national safeguard clauses to ban the marketing of specific GMHT oilseed rape events on their territory. However, the scientific basis for the environmental and economic concerns posed by feral GMHT oilseed rape resulting from seed import spills is debatable. While oilseed rape has characteristics such as secondary dormancy and small seed size that enable it to persist and be redistributed in the landscape, the presence of ferals is not in itself an environmental or economic problem. Crucially, feral oilseed rape has not become invasive outside cultivated and ruderal habitats, and HT traits are not likely to result in increased invasiveness. Feral GMHT oilseed rape has the potential to introduce HT traits to volunteer weeds in agricultural fields, but would only be amplified if the herbicides to which HT volunteers are tolerant were used routinely in the field. However, this worst-case scenario is most unlikely, as seed import spills are mostly confined to port areas. Economic concerns revolve around the potential for feral GMHT oilseed rape to contribute to GM admixtures in non-GM crops. Since feral plants derived from cultivation (as distinct from import) occur at too low a frequency to affect the coexistence threshold of 0.9% in the EU, it can be concluded that feral GMHT plants resulting from seed import spills will have little relevance as a potential source of pollen or seed for GM admixture. This paper concludes that feral oilseed rape in Europe should not be routinely managed, and certainly not in semi-natural habitats, as the benefits of such action would not outweigh the negative effects of

  15. Applied genetic evaluations for production and functional traits in dairy cattle.

    PubMed

    Mark, T

    2004-08-01

    The objective of this study was to review the current status of genetic evaluation systems for production and functional traits as practiced in different Interbull member countries and to discuss that status in relation to research results and potential improvements. Thirty-one countries provided information. Substantial variation was evident for number of traits considered per country, trait definition, genetic evaluation procedure within trait, effects included, and how these were treated in genetic evaluation models. All countries lacked genetic evaluations for one or more economically important traits. Improvement in the genetic evaluation models, especially for many functional traits, could be achieved by closing the gaps between research and practice. More detailed and up to date information about national genetic evaluation systems for traits in different countries is available at www.interbull.org. Female fertility and workability traits were considered in many countries and could be next in line for international genetic evaluations.

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

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

  18. Characterizing psychopathy using DSM-5 personality traits.

    PubMed

    Strickland, Casey M; Drislane, Laura E; Lucy, Megan; Krueger, Robert F; Patrick, Christopher J

    2013-06-01

    Despite its importance historically and contemporarily, psychopathy is not recognized in the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revised (DSM-IV-TR). Its closest counterpart, antisocial personality disorder, includes strong representation of behavioral deviance symptoms but weak representation of affective-interpersonal features considered central to psychopathy. The current study evaluated the extent to which psychopathy and its distinctive facets, indexed by the Triarchic Psychopathy Measure, can be assessed effectively using traits from the dimensional model of personality pathology developed for DSM-5, operationalized by the Personality Inventory for DSM-5 (PID-5). Results indicate that (a) facets of psychopathy entailing impulsive externalization and callous aggression are well-represented by traits from the PID-5 considered relevant to antisocial personality disorder, and (b) the boldness facet of psychopathy can be effectively captured using additional PID-5 traits. These findings provide evidence that the dimensional model of personality pathology embodied in the PID-5 provides effective trait-based coverage of psychopathy and its facets.

  19. Monitoring the agricultural landscape for insect resistance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    Farmers in 25 countries on six continents are using plant biotechnology to solve difficult crop production challenges and conserve the environment. In fact, 13.3 million farmers, which include 90 percent of the farming in developing countries, choose to plant biotech crops. Over the past decade, farmers increased area planted in genetically modified (GM) crops by more than 10 percent each year, thus increasing their farm income by more than 44 billion US dollars (1996-2007), and achieved economic, environmental and social benefits in crops such as soybeans, canola, corn and cotton. To date, total acres of biotech crops harvested exceed more than 2 billion with a proven 13-year history of safe use. Over the next decade, expanded adoption combined with current research on 57 crops in 63 countries will broaden the advantages of genetically modified foods for growers, consumers and the environment. Genetically modified (GM) crops with the ability to produce toxins lethal to specific insect pests are covering a larger percentage of the agricultural landscape every year. The United States department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated that 63 percent of corn and 65 percent of cotton contained these specific genetic traits in 2009. The toxins could protect billions of dollars of loss from insect damage for crops valued at greater than 165 billion US dollars in 2008. The stable and efficient production of these crops has taken on even more importance in recent years with their use, not only as a food source, but now also a source of fuel. It is in the best interest of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to ensure the continued efficacy of toxin producing GM crops as their use reduces pesticides harmful to humans and animals. However, population genetics models have indicated the risk of insect pests developing resistance to these toxins if a high percentage of acreage is grown in these crops. The USEPA is developing methods to monitor the agricultural

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-02-01

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

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

    PubMed

    Nuti, Marco; Felici, Cristiana; Agnolucci, Monica

    2007-01-01

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

  4. A sequential quantitative trait locus fine-mapping strategy using recombinant-derived progeny.

    PubMed

    Yang, Qin; Zhang, Dongfeng; Xu, Mingliang

    2012-04-01

    A thorough understanding of the quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that underlie agronomically important traits in crops would greatly increase agricultural productivity. Although advances have been made in QTL cloning, the majority of QTLs remain unknown because of their low heritability and minor contributions to phenotypic performance. Here we summarize the key advantages and disadvantages of current QTL fine-mapping methodologies, and then introduce a sequential QTL fine-mapping strategy based on both genotypes and phenotypes of progeny derived from recombinants. With this mapping strategy, experimental errors could be dramatically diminished so as to reveal the authentic genetic effect of target QTLs. The number of progeny required to detect QTLs at various R2 values was calculated, and the backcross generation suitable to start QTL fine-mapping was also estimated. This mapping strategy has proved to be very powerful in narrowing down QTL regions, particularly minor-effect QTLs, as revealed by fine-mapping of various resistance QTLs in maize. Application of this sequential QTL mapping strategy should accelerate cloning of agronomically important QTLs, which is currently a substantial challenge in crops. PMID:22348858

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

    PubMed Central

    Kröber, Wenzel; Böhnke, Martin; Welk, Erik; Wirth, Christian; Bruelheide, Helge

    2012-01-01

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

  6. Leaf trait-environment relationships in a subtropical broadleaved forest in South-East China.

    PubMed

    Kröber, Wenzel; Böhnke, Martin; Welk, Erik; Wirth, Christian; Bruelheide, Helge

    2012-01-01

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

  7. Leaf trait-environment relationships in a subtropical broadleaved forest in South-East China.

    PubMed

    Kröber, Wenzel; Böhnke, Martin; Welk, Erik; Wirth, Christian; Bruelheide, Helge

    2012-01-01

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

  8. Handbook of Agricultural Geophysics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

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

  9. Functional traits and root morphology of alpine plants

    PubMed Central

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2016-01-01

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

  11. [Agriculture, ecology and development].

    PubMed

    Dufumier, M

    1993-01-01

    This work is based in part on the papers concerning agriculture, ecology, and development contained in this issue of the Revue Tiers-Monde. It provides an overview of changing international attitudes toward environmental damage, examines 3 specific types of damage affecting developing countries in particular, and discusses the shortcomings of existing environmental projects and the prerequisites for a lasting control over environmental damage. It has become increasingly evident that pollution and environmental damage cannot be the concern exclusively of developed countries. The 1992 UN Conference on the Environment and Development in rio de Janeiro focused most of its attention on problems evident at the planetary level such as the greenhouse effect and extinction of species. Problems resulting from the impact of harmful agricultural practices on developing country ecological environments were noted somewhat in passing. The examples of tropical deforestation, the degradation of savannahs and steppes, and cultivation of new fields on steep mountainsides demonstrate the complexity and gravity of environmental problems in developing countries. The poverty of peasants and their inability to obtain the inputs that would enable them to practice a more stable type of agriculture are important factors in the damage done. A common problem is that immediate production or consumption is favored with little regard for longterm consequences. Certain agricultural practices such as the use of cultivars selected for their high yields under optimal conditions contribute to the progressive disappearance of varieties with special properties such as resistance to disease or insects that may be needed in the future. Excessive use of herbicides, pesticides, or fertilizer may bring problems of pollution and toxicity. Numerous development projects sponsored by donors from the developed countries have been designed to pursue short term objectives with insufficient attention to longterm

  12. Personality traits, personality disorders, and migraine: a review.

    PubMed

    Davis, Rachel E; Smitherman, Todd A; Baskin, Steven M

    2013-05-01

    The personality trait of neuroticism has been associated with migraine, although research is needed to clarify potential moderators of this relationship and the extent to which neuroticism reflects a stable disposition or instead is a function of general somatic distress or situational influences. With the possible exception of harm avoidance, research has not consistently identified any other personality trait unique among migraineurs. Personality disorders have been researched less extensively, but existing data suggests that borderline personality disorder, in particular, is associated with increased negative impact of migraine, risk for medication overuse, and poor response to treatment that is likely of greater clinical importance than any personality trait per se.

  13. Variability of Root Traits in Spring Wheat Germplasm

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2016-01-01

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

  15. Species identity influences belowground arthropod assemblages via functional traits

    PubMed Central

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

    2013-01-01

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

  16. The role of nitrogen-efficient cultivars in sustainable agriculture.

    PubMed

    Weisler, F; Behrens, T; Horst, W J

    2001-11-01

    To improve nitrogen (N) efficiency in agriculture, integrated N management strategies that take into consideration improved fertilizer, soil, and crop management practices are necessary. This paper reports results of field experiments in which maize (Zea mays L.) and oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) cultivars were compared with respect to their agronomic N efficiency (yield at a given N supply), N uptake efficiency (N accumulation at a given N supply), and N utilization efficiency (dry matter yield per unit N taken up by the plant). Under conditions of high N supply, significant differences among maize cultivars were found in shoot N uptake, soil nitrate depletion during the growing season, and the related losses of nitrate through leaching after the growing season. Experiments under conditions of reduced N supply indicated a considerable genotypic variation in reproductive yield formation of both maize and oilseed rape. High agronomic efficiency was achieved by a combination of high uptake and utilization efficiency (maize), or exclusively by high uptake efficiency (rape). N-efficient cultivars of both crops were characterized by maintenance of a relatively high N-uptake activity during the reproductive growth phase. In rape this trait was linked with leaf area and photosynthetic activity of leaves. We conclude that growing of N-efficient cultivars may serve as an important element of integrated nutrient management strategies in both low- and high-input agriculture. PMID:12805782

  17. 7 CFR 1208.10 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PROCESSED RASPBERRY PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION ORDER Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order Definitions § 1208.10 Importer. Importer means any person importing 20,000 pounds or more of processed...

  18. 7 CFR 1208.10 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PROCESSED RASPBERRY PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION ORDER Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order Definitions § 1208.10 Importer. Importer means any person importing 20,000 pounds or more of processed...

  19. 7 CFR 1230.12 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PORK PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION Pork Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions § 1230.12 Importer. Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the...

  20. 7 CFR 1230.12 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PORK PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION Pork Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions § 1230.12 Importer. Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the...

  1. 7 CFR 1230.12 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PORK PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION Pork Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions § 1230.12 Importer. Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the...

  2. 7 CFR 1230.12 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PORK PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION Pork Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions § 1230.12 Importer. Importer means a person who imports porcine animals, pork, or pork products into the...

  3. Trait-specific responses of wild bee communities to landscape composition, configuration and local factors.

    PubMed

    Hopfenmüller, Sebastian; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Holzschuh, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Land-use intensification and loss of semi-natural habitats have induced a severe decline of bee diversity in agricultural landscapes. Semi-natural habitats like calcareous grasslands are among the most important bee habitats in central Europe, but they are threatened by decreasing habitat area and quality, and by homogenization of the surrounding landscape affecting both landscape composition and configuration. In this study we tested the importance of habitat area, quality and connectivity as well as landscape composition and configuration on wild bees in calcareous grasslands. We made detailed trait-specific analyses as bees with different traits might differ in their response to the tested factors. Species richness and abundance of wild bees were surveyed on 23 calcareous grassland patches in Southern Germany with independent gradients in local and landscape factors. Total wild bee richness was positively affected by complex landscape configuration, large habitat area and high habitat quality (i.e. steep slopes). Cuckoo bee richness was positively affected by complex landscape configuration and large habitat area whereas habitat specialists were only affected by the local factors habitat area and habitat quality. Small social generalists were positively influenced by habitat area whereas large social generalists (bumblebees) were positively affected by landscape composition (high percentage of semi-natural habitats). Our results emphasize a strong dependence of habitat specialists on local habitat characteristics, whereas cuckoo bees and bumblebees are more likely affected by the surrounding landscape. We conclude that a combination of large high-quality patches and heterogeneous landscapes maintains high bee species richness and communities with diverse trait composition. Such diverse communities might stabilize pollination services provided to crops and wild plants on local and landscape scales.

  4. Trait-specific responses of wild bee communities to landscape composition, configuration and local factors.

    PubMed

    Hopfenmüller, Sebastian; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Holzschuh, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Land-use intensification and loss of semi-natural habitats have induced a severe decline of bee diversity in agricultural landscapes. Semi-natural habitats like calcareous grasslands are among the most important bee habitats in central Europe, but they are threatened by decreasing habitat area and quality, and by homogenization of the surrounding landscape affecting both landscape composition and configuration. In this study we tested the importance of habitat area, quality and connectivity as well as landscape composition and configuration on wild bees in calcareous grasslands. We made detailed trait-specific analyses as bees with different traits might differ in their response to the tested factors. Species richness and abundance of wild bees were surveyed on 23 calcareous grassland patches in Southern Germany with independent gradients in local and landscape factors. Total wild bee richness was positively affected by complex landscape configuration, large habitat area and high habitat quality (i.e. steep slopes). Cuckoo bee richness was positively affected by complex landscape configuration and large habitat area whereas habitat specialists were only affected by the local factors habitat area and habitat quality. Small social generalists were positively influenced by habitat area whereas large social generalists (bumblebees) were positively affected by landscape composition (high percentage of semi-natural habitats). Our results emphasize a strong dependence of habitat specialists on local habitat characteristics, whereas cuckoo bees and bumblebees are more likely affected by the surrounding landscape. We conclude that a combination of large high-quality patches and heterogeneous landscapes maintains high bee species richness and communities with diverse trait composition. Such diverse communities might stabilize pollination services provided to crops and wild plants on local and landscape scales. PMID:25137311

  5. Exaggerated trait growth in insects.

    PubMed

    Lavine, Laura; Gotoh, Hiroki; Brent, Colin S; Dworkin, Ian; Emlen, Douglas J

    2015-01-01

    Animal structures occasionally attain extreme proportions, eclipsing in size the surrounding body parts. We review insect examples of exaggerated traits, such as the mandibles of stag beetles (Lucanidae), the claspers of praying mantids (Mantidae), the elongated hindlimbs of grasshoppers (Orthoptera: Caelifera), and the giant heads of soldier ants (Formicidae) and termites (Isoptera). Developmentally, disproportionate growth can arise through trait-specific modifications to the activity of at least four pathways: the sex determination pathway, the appendage patterning pathway, the insulin/IGF signaling pathway, and the juvenile hormone/ecdysteroid pathway. Although most exaggerated traits have not been studied mechanistically, it is already apparent that distinct developmental mechanisms underlie the evolution of the different types of exaggerated traits. We suggest this reflects the nature of selection in each instance, revealing an exciting link between mechanism, form, and function. We use this information to make explicit predictions for the types of regulatory pathways likely to underlie each type of exaggerated trait.

  6. Quantitative trait loci analysis of egg and meat production traits in a red junglefowlxWhite Leghorn cross.

    PubMed

    Wright, D; Kerje, S; Lundström, K; Babol, J; Schütz, K; Jensen, P; Andersson, L

    2006-12-01

    Egg and production traits are of considerable economic importance in chickens. Using a White Leghorn x red junglefowl F(2) intercross, standard production measures of liver weight and colour, egg size, eggshell thickness, egg taste and meat quality were taken. A total of 160 markers covering 29 autosomes and the Z chromosome were genotyped on 175-243 individuals, depending on the trait under consideration. A total of nine significant quantitative trait loci (QTL) and three suggestive QTL were found on chicken chromosomes 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 12, E47W24 and E22C19W28. PMID:17121597

  7. Quantitative genomics: exploring the genetic architecture of complex trait predisposition.

    PubMed

    Pomp, D; Allan, M F; Wesolowski, S R

    2004-01-01

    Most phenotypes with agricultural or biomedical relevance are multifactorial traits controlled by complex contributions of genetics and environment. Genetic predisposition results from combinations of relatively small effects due to variations within a large number of genes, known as QTL. Well over 200 QTL have been reported for growth and body composition traits in the mouse, which likely represent at least 50 to 100 distinct genes. Molecular biology has yielded significant advances in understanding these traits at the metabolic and physiological levels; however, little has been learned regarding the identity and nature of the underlying polygenes. In addition to the significantly poor precision inherent to QTL localization, it is very difficult to differentiate between co-localization and coincidence when comparing QTL with other QTL and with potential candidate genes. The wide gap between our knowledge of physiological mechanisms underlying complex traits and the nature of genetic predisposition significantly impairs discovery of genes underlying QTL. Identification and genetic mapping of key transcriptional, proteomic, metabolomic, and endocrine events will uncover large lists of significant positional candidate genes for growth and body composition. However, integration of experimental approaches to jointly evaluate predisposition and physiology will increase success of QTL identification by merging the power of recombination with functional analysis. Measuring physiologically relevant subphenotypes within a structured QTL mapping population will not only facilitate pathway-specific prioritization among candidate genes, but may also directly identify genes underlying QTL. This would advance our understanding of the genetic architecture of complex traits by testing the central hypothesis that genes controlling predisposition to a quantitative trait are primarily involved in trans-regulation of the primary physiological pathways that regulate the trait. PMID

  8. On-farm habitat restoration counters biotic homogenization in intensively managed agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ponisio, Lauren C; M'Gonigle, Leithen K; Kremen, Claire

    2016-02-01

    To slow the rate of global species loss, it is imperative to understand how to restore and maintain native biodiversity in agricultural landscapes. Currently, agriculture is associated with lower spatial heterogeneity and turnover in community composition (β-diversity). While some techniques are known to enhance α-diversity, it is unclear whether habitat restoration can re-establish β-diversity. Using a long-term pollinator dataset, comprising ∼9,800 specimens collected from the intensively managed agricultural landscape of the Central Valley of California, we show that on-farm habitat restoration in the form of native plant 'hedgerows', when replicated across a landscape, can boost β-diversity by approximately 14% relative to unrestored field margins, to levels similar to some natural communities. Hedgerows restore β-diversity by promoting the assembly of phenotypically diverse communities. Intensively managed agriculture imposes a strong ecological filter that negatively affects several important dimensions of community trait diversity, distribution, and uniqueness. However, by helping to restore phenotypically diverse pollinator communities, small-scale restorations such as hedgerows provide a valuable tool for conserving biodiversity and promoting ecosystem services. PMID:26542192

  9. On-farm habitat restoration counters biotic homogenization in intensively managed agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ponisio, Lauren C; M'Gonigle, Leithen K; Kremen, Claire

    2016-02-01

    To slow the rate of global species loss, it is imperative to understand how to restore and maintain native biodiversity in agricultural landscapes. Currently, agriculture is associated with lower spatial heterogeneity and turnover in community composition (β-diversity). While some techniques are known to enhance α-diversity, it is unclear whether habitat restoration can re-establish β-diversity. Using a long-term pollinator dataset, comprising ∼9,800 specimens collected from the intensively managed agricultural landscape of the Central Valley of California, we show that on-farm habitat restoration in the form of native plant 'hedgerows', when replicated across a landscape, can boost β-diversity by approximately 14% relative to unrestored field margins, to levels similar to some natural communities. Hedgerows restore β-diversity by promoting the assembly of phenotypically diverse communities. Intensively managed agriculture imposes a strong ecological filter that negatively affects several important dimensions of community trait diversity, distribution, and uniqueness. However, by helping to restore phenotypically diverse pollinator communities, small-scale restorations such as hedgerows provide a valuable tool for conserving biodiversity and promoting ecosystem services.

  10. Quantitative trait loci underlying udder morphology traits in dairy sheep.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Gil, B; El-Zarei, M F; Alvarez, L; Bayón, Y; de la Fuente, L F; San Primitivo, F; Arranz, J J

    2008-09-01

    A genome scan was conducted on the basis of the daughter design to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL) influencing udder morphology traits in Spanish Churra dairy sheep. A total of 739 ewes belonging to 11 half-sib families were genotyped for 182 microsatellite markers covering 3,248.2 cM (Kosambi) of the ovine autosomal genome. Phenotypic traits included scores for 5 linear udder traits: udder depth, udder attachment, teat placement, teat size, and udder shape. Quantitative measurements for the QTL analysis were calculated for each trait from evaluation scores using within-family yield deviations corrected for fixed environmental effects. Joint analysis of all families using Haley-Knott regression identified 5 regions that exceeded the 5% chromosome-wise significance threshold on chromosomes 7, 14, 15, 20, and 26. Based on the across-family results, a within-family analysis was carried out to identify families segregated according to the QTL and to estimate the QTL effect. The allelic substitution effect for individual families ranged from 0.47 to 1.7 phenotypic standard deviation units for udder shape on chromosome 15 and udder depth on chromosome 14, respectively. These QTL regions provide a starting point for further research aimed at the characterization of genetic variability involved in udder traits in Churra sheep. This paper presents the first report of a sheep genome scan for udder-related traits in a dairy sheep outbred population.

  11. Quantitative trait loci underlying milk production traits in sheep.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Gil, B; El-Zarei, M F; Alvarez, L; Bayón, Y; de la Fuente, L F; San Primitivo, F; Arranz, J-J

    2009-08-01

    Improvement of milk production traits in dairy sheep is required to increase the competitiveness of the industry and to maintain the production of high quality cheese in regions of Mediterranean countries with less favourable conditions. Additional improvement over classical selection could be reached if genes with significant effects on the relevant traits were specifically targeted by selection. However, so far, few studies have been undertaken to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL) in dairy sheep. In this study, we present a complete genome scan performed in a commercial population of Spanish Churra sheep to identify chromosomal regions associated with phenotypic variation observed in milk production traits. Eleven half-sib families, including a total of 1213 ewes, were analysed following a daughter design. Genome-wise multi-marker regression analysis revealed a genome-wise significant QTL for milk protein percentage on chromosome 3. Eight other regions, localized on chromosomes 1, 2, 20, 23 and 25, showed suggestive significant linkage associations with some of the analysed traits. To our knowledge, this study represents the first complete genome scan for milk production traits reported in dairy sheep. The experiment described here shows that analysis of commercial dairy sheep populations has the potential to increase our understanding of the genetic determinants of complex production-related traits.

  12. [Major domestication traits in Asian rice].

    PubMed

    Ou, Shu-Jun; Wang, Hong-Ru; Chu, Cheng-Cai

    2012-11-01

    Rice (Oryza sativa L.) is an excellent model plant in elucidation of cereal domestication. Loss of seed shattering, weakened dormancy, and changes in plant architecture were thought to be three key events in the rice domestication and creating the high-yield, uniform-germinating, and densely-planting modern rice. Loss of shattering is considered to be the direct morphological evidence for identifying domesticated rice. Two major shattering QTLs, Sh4 and qSH1, have displayed different domestication histories. Weakened seed dormancy is essential for synchronous germination in agricultural production. Genes Sdr4, qSD7-1, and qSD12 impose a global and complementary adaptation strategies in controlling seed dormancy. The prostate growth habit of wild rice is an adaptation to disturbed habitats, while the erect growth habit of rice cultivars meet the needs of compact planting, and such a plant architecture is mainly controlled by PROG1. The outcrossing habit of wild rice promotes propagation of domestication genes among different populations, while the self-pollinating habit of cultivated rice facilitates fixation of domestication genes. Currently, the researches on rice domestication mainly focus on individual genes or multiple neutral markers, and much less attention has been paid to the evolution of network controlling domestication traits. With the progress in functional genomics research, the molecular mechanism of domestication traits is emerging. Rice domestication researches based on network will be more comprehensive and better reflect rice domestica-tion process. Here, we reviewed most progresses in molecular mechanisms of rice domestication traits, in order to provide the new insights for rice domestication and molecular breeding.

  13. Sequencing Crop Genomes: A Gateway to Improve Tropical Agriculture.

    PubMed

    Thottathil, Gincy Paily; Jayasekaran, Kandakumar; Othman, Ahmad Sofiman

    2016-02-01

    Agricultural development in the tropics lags behind development in the temperate latitudes due to the lack of advanced technology, and various biotic and abiotic factors. To cope with the increasing demand for food and other plant-based products, improved crop varieties have to be developed. To breed improved varieties, a better understanding of crop genetics is necessary. With the advent of next-generation DNA sequencing technologies, many important crop genomes have been sequenced. Primary importance has been given to food crops, including cereals, tuber crops, vegetables, and fruits. The DNA sequence information is extremely valuable for identifying key genes controlling important agronomic traits and for identifying genetic variability among the cultivars. However, massive DNA re-sequencing and gene expression studies have to be performed to substantially improve our understanding of crop genetics. Application of the knowledge obtained from the genomes, transcriptomes, expression studies, and epigenetic studies would enable the development of improved varieties and may lead to a second green revolution. The applications of next generation DNA sequencing technologies in crop improvement, its limitations, future prospects, and the features of important crop genome projects are reviewed herein. PMID:27019684

  14. Sequencing Crop Genomes: A Gateway to Improve Tropical Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Thottathil, Gincy Paily; Jayasekaran, Kandakumar; Othman, Ahmad Sofiman

    2016-01-01

    Agricultural development in the tropics lags behind development in the temperate latitudes due to the lack of advanced technology, and various biotic and abiotic factors. To cope with the increasing demand for food and other plant-based products, improved crop varieties have to be developed. To breed improved varieties, a better understanding of crop genetics is necessary. With the advent of next-generation DNA sequencing technologies, many important crop genomes have been sequenced. Primary importance has been given to food crops, including cereals, tuber crops, vegetables, and fruits. The DNA sequence information is extremely valuable for identifying key genes controlling important agronomic traits and for identifying genetic variability among the cultivars. However, massive DNA re-sequencing and gene expression studies have to be performed to substantially improve our understanding of crop genetics. Application of the knowledge obtained from the genomes, transcriptomes, expression studies, and epigenetic studies would enable the development of improved varieties and may lead to a second green revolution. The applications of next generation DNA sequencing technologies in crop improvement, its limitations, future prospects, and the features of important crop genome projects are reviewed herein. PMID:27019684

  15. Relative contribution of soil, management and traits to co-variations of multiple ecosystem properties in grasslands.

    PubMed

    Gos, Pierre; Loucougaray, Grégory; Colace, Marie-Pascale; Arnoldi, Cindy; Gaucherand, Stéphanie; Dumazel, Daphné; Girard, Lucie; Delorme, Sarah; Lavorel, Sandra

    2016-04-01

    Ecological intensification promotes the better use of ecosystem functioning for agricultural production and as a provider of additional regulation and cultural services. We investigated the mechanisms underpinning potential ecological intensification of livestock production in the Vercors mountains (France). We quantified the variations in seven ecosystem properties associated with key ecosystem services: above-ground biomass production at first harvest, fodder digestibility, plant species richness, soil organic matter content, soil carbon content, total microbial biomass and soil bacteria:fungi ratio across 39 grassland plots representing varying management types and intensity. Our analyses confirmed joint effects of management, traits and soil abiotic parameters on variations in ecosystem properties, with the combination of management and traits being most influential. The variations explained by traits were consistent with the leaf economics spectrum model and its implications for ecosystem functioning. The observed independence between ecosystem properties relevant to production (forage biomass, digestibility and nutrient turnover) on the one hand and soil stocks (organic matter, carbon and microbial stocks) on the other hand suggests that an intensification of fodder production might be compatible with the preservation of the soil capital. We highlight that appropriate choices regarding various practices, such as the first date of grazing or mowing being dependent on soil moisture, have important consequences on a number of ecosystem properties relevant for ecosystem services and may influence biodiversity patterns. Such avenues for ecological intensification should be considered as part of further landscape- and farm-scale analyses of the relationships between farm functioning and ecosystem services.

  16. 1986 Agricultural Chartbook. Agriculture Handbook No. 663.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC.

    This book contains 310 charts, tables, and graphs containing statistical information about agriculture-related commodities and services, primarily in the United States, in 1986. The book is organized in seven sections that cover the following topics: (1) the farm (farm income, farm population, farm workers, food and fiber system, agriculture and…

  17. Agricultural Aircraft for Site-Specific Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural aircraft provide a convenient platform to aid in precision agriculture, in which pesticide, fertilizer or other field inputs are applied only where they are needed. This saves on chemical and farm resources, and reduces environmental loading. Remote sensing is used to spot areas of the ...

  18. Agricultural Chartbook 1988. Agriculture Handbook No. 673.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC.

    These charts present an overview of the current economic health of American agriculture. The charts move from the national and international arenas to farm economic health measures and crop and livestock trends. A small amount of descriptive narrative accompanies most of the charts. Charts depicting the economic picture of U.S. agriculture include…

  19. Integrated genomics and molecular breeding approaches for dissecting the complex quantitative traits in crop plants.

    PubMed

    Kujur, Alice; Saxena, Maneesha S; Bajaj, Deepak; Laxmi; Parida, Swarup K

    2013-12-01

    The enormous population growth, climate change and global warming are now considered major threats to agriculture and world's food security. To improve the productivity and sustainability of agriculture, the development of highyielding and durable abiotic and biotic stress-tolerant cultivars and/climate resilient crops is essential. Henceforth, understanding the molecular mechanism and dissection of complex quantitative yield and stress tolerance traits is the prime objective in current agricultural biotechnology research. In recent years, tremendous progress has been made in plant genomics and molecular breeding research pertaining to conventional and next-generation whole genome, transcriptome and epigenome sequencing efforts, generation of huge genomic, transcriptomic and epigenomic resources and development of modern genomics-assisted breeding approaches in diverse crop genotypes with contrasting yield and abiotic stress tolerance traits. Unfortunately, the detailed molecular mechanism and gene regulatory networks controlling such complex quantitative traits is not yet well understood in crop plants. Therefore, we propose an integrated strategies involving available enormous and diverse traditional and modern -omics (structural, functional, comparative and epigenomics) approaches/resources and genomics-assisted breeding methods which agricultural biotechnologist can adopt/utilize to dissect and decode the molecular and gene regulatory networks involved in the complex quantitative yield and stress tolerance traits in crop plants. This would provide clues and much needed inputs for rapid selection of novel functionally relevant molecular tags regulating such complex traits to expedite traditional and modern marker-assisted genetic enhancement studies in target crop species for developing high-yielding stress-tolerant varieties.

  20. Nitrogen mineralization in production agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding the effects of N management and how it relates to the N cycle in soil ecosystems is essential to determining N availability. This manuscript describes the importance of N mineralization to production agriculture and introduces a special issue on “N Mineralization in Production Agricult...

  1. Maine Agricultural Foods. Project SEED.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beaulieu, Peter; Ossenfort, Pat

    This paper describes an activity-based program that teaches students in grades 4-12 about the importance of Maine agriculture in their lives. Specifically, the goal is to increase student awareness of how the foods they eat are planted, harvested, and processed. The emphasis is on crops grown in Maine such as potatoes, broccoli, peas, blueberries,…

  2. Linking Tropical Forest Function to Hydraulic Traits in a Size-Structured and Trait-Based Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christoffersen, B. O.; Gloor, M.; Fauset, S.; Fyllas, N.; Galbraith, D.; Baker, T. R.; Rowland, L.; Fisher, R.; Binks, O.; Sevanto, S.; Xu, C.; Jansen, S.; Choat, B.; Mencuccini, M.; McDowell, N. G.; Meir, P.

    2015-12-01

    A major weakness of forest ecosystem models is their inability to capture the diversity of responses to changes in water availability, severely hampering efforts to predict the fate of tropical forests under climate change. Such models often prescribe moisture sensitivity using heuristic response functions that are uniform across all individuals and lack important knowledge about trade-offs in hydraulic traits. We address this weakness by implementing a process representation of plant hydraulics into an individual- and trait-based model (Trait Forest Simulator; TFS) intended for application at discrete sites where community-level distributions of stem and leaf trait spectra (wood density, leaf mass per area, leaf nitrogen and phosphorus content) are known. The model represents a trade-off in the safety and efficiency of water conduction in xylem tissue through hydraulic traits, while accounting for the counteracting effects of increasing hydraulic path length and xylem conduit taper on whole-plant hydraulic resistance with increasing tree size. Using existing trait databases and additional meta-analyses from the rich literature on tropical tree ecophysiology, we obtained all necessary hydraulic parameters associated with xylem conductivity, vulnerability curves, pressure-volume curves, and hydraulic architecture (e.g., leaf-to-sapwood area ratios) as a function of the aforementioned traits and tree size. Incorporating these relationships in the model greatly improved the diversity of tree response to seasonal changes in water availability as well as in response to drought, as determined by comparison with field observations and experiments. Importantly, this individual- and trait-based framework provides a testbed for identifying both critical processes and functional traits needed for inclusion in coarse-scale Dynamic Global Vegetation Models, which will lead to reduced uncertainty in the future state of tropical forests.

  3. 7 CFR 319.37 - Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. (a) No person shall... 7 Agriculture 5 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. 319.37 Section 319.37 Agriculture Regulations of the Department...

  4. 7 CFR 319.37 - Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. (a) No person shall... 7 Agriculture 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. 319.37 Section 319.37 Agriculture Regulations of the Department...

  5. Functional Regression Models for Epistasis Analysis of Multiple Quantitative Traits.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Futao; Xie, Dan; Liang, Meimei; Xiong, Momiao

    2016-04-01

    To date, most genetic analyses of phenotypes have focused on analyzing single traits or analyzing each phenotype independently. However, joint epistasis analysis of multiple complementary traits will increase statistical power and improve our understanding of the complicated genetic structure of the complex diseases. Despite their importance in uncovering the genetic structure of complex traits, the statistical methods for identifying epistasis in multiple phenotypes remains fundamentally unexplored. To fill this gap, we formulate a test for interaction between two genes in multiple quantitative trait analysis as a multiple functional regression (MFRG) in which the genotype functions (genetic variant profiles) are defined as a function of the genomic position of the genetic variants. We use large-scale simulations to calculate Type I error rates for testing interaction between two genes with multiple phenotypes and to compare the power with multivariate pairwise interaction analysis and single trait interaction analysis by a single variate functional regression model. To further evaluate performance, the MFRG for epistasis analysis is applied to five phenotypes of exome sequence data from the NHLBI's Exome Sequencing Project (ESP) to detect pleiotropic epistasis. A total of 267 pairs of genes that formed a genetic interaction network showed significant evidence of epistasis influencing five traits. The results demonstrate that the joint interaction analysis of multiple phenotypes has a much higher power to detect interaction than the interaction analysis of a single trait and may open a new direction to fully uncovering the genetic structure of multiple phenotypes.

  6. Predicting personality traits related to consumer behavior using SNS analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baik, Jongbum; Lee, Kangbok; Lee, Soowon; Kim, Yongbum; Choi, Jayoung

    2016-07-01

    Modeling a user profile is one of the important factors for devising a personalized recommendation. The traditional approach for modeling a user profile in computer science is to collect and generalize the user's buying behavior or preference history, generated from the user's interactions with recommender systems. According to consumer behavior research, however, internal factors such as personality traits influence a consumer's buying behavior. Existing studies have tried to adapt the Big 5 personality traits to personalized recommendations. However, although studies have shown that these traits can be useful to some extent for personalized recommendation, the causal relationship between the Big 5 personality traits and the buying behaviors of actual consumers has not been validated. In this paper, we propose a novel method for predicting the four personality traits-Extroversion, Public Self-consciousness, Desire for Uniqueness, and Self-esteem-that correlate with buying behaviors. The proposed method automatically constructs a user-personality-traits prediction model for each user by analyzing the user behavior on a social networking service. The experimental results from an analysis of the collected Facebook data show that the proposed method can predict user-personality traits with greater precision than methods that use the variables proposed in previous studies.

  7. Functional Regression Models for Epistasis Analysis of Multiple Quantitative Traits.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Futao; Xie, Dan; Liang, Meimei; Xiong, Momiao

    2016-04-01

    To date, most genetic analyses of phenotypes have focused on analyzing single traits or analyzing each phenotype independently. However, joint epistasis analysis of multiple complementary traits will increase statistical power and improve our understanding of the complicated genetic structure of the complex diseases. Despite their importance in uncovering the genetic structure of complex traits, the statistical methods for identifying epistasis in multiple phenotypes remains fundamentally unexplored. To fill this gap, we formulate a test for interaction between two genes in multiple quantitative trait analysis as a multiple functional regression (MFRG) in which the genotype functions (genetic variant profiles) are defined as a function of the genomic position of the genetic variants. We use large-scale simulations to calculate Type I error rates for testing interaction between two genes with multiple phenotypes and to compare the power with multivariate pairwise interaction analysis and single trait interaction analysis by a single variate functional regression model. To further evaluate performance, the MFRG for epistasis analysis is applied to five phenotypes of exome sequence data from the NHLBI's Exome Sequencing Project (ESP) to detect pleiotropic epistasis. A total of 267 pairs of genes that formed a genetic interaction network showed significant evidence of epistasis influencing five traits. The results demonstrate that the joint interaction analysis of multiple phenotypes has a much higher power to detect interaction than the interaction analysis of a single trait and may open a new direction to fully uncovering the genetic structure of multiple phenotypes. PMID:27104857

  8. Model Adequacy and the Macroevolution of Angiosperm Functional Traits.

    PubMed

    Pennell, Matthew W; FitzJohn, Richard G; Cornwell, William K; Harmon, Luke J

    2015-08-01

    Making meaningful inferences from phylogenetic comparative data requires a meaningful model of trait evolution. It is thus important to determine whether the model is appropriate for the data and the question being addressed. One way to assess this is to ask whether the model provides a good statistical explanation for the variation in the data. To date, researchers have focused primarily on the explanatory power of a model relative to alternative models. Methods have been developed to assess the adequacy, or absolute explanatory power, of phylogenetic trait models, but these have been restricted to specific models or questions. Here we present a general statistical framework for assessing the adequacy of phylogenetic trait models. We use our approach to evaluate the statistical performance of commonly used trait models on 337 comparative data sets covering three key angiosperm functional traits. In general, the models we tested often provided poor statistical explanations for the evolution of these traits. This was true for many different groups and at many different scales. Whether such statistical inadequacy will qualitatively alter inferences drawn from comparative data sets will depend on the context. Regardless, assessing model adequacy can provide interesting biological insights-how and why a model fails to describe variation in a data set give us clues about what evolutionary processes may have driven trait evolution across time. PMID:26655160

  9. Polytraits: A database on biological traits of marine polychaetes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The study of ecosystem functioning – the role which organisms play in an ecosystem – is becoming increasingly important in marine ecological research. The functional structure of a community can be represented by a set of functional traits assigned to behavioural, reproductive and morphological characteristics. The collection of these traits from the literature is however a laborious and time-consuming process, and gaps of knowledge and restricted availability of literature are a common problem. Trait data are not yet readily being shared by research communities, and even if they are, a lack of trait data repositories and standards for data formats leads to the publication of trait information in forms which cannot be processed by computers. This paper describes Polytraits (http://polytraits.lifewatchgreece.eu), a database on biological traits of marine polychaetes (bristle worms, Polychaeta: Annelida). At present, the database contains almost 20,000 records on morphological, behavioural and reproductive characteristics of more than 1,000 marine polychaete species, all referenced by literature sources. All data can be freely accessed through the project website in different ways and formats, both human-readable and machine-readable, and have been submitted to the Encyclopedia of Life for archival and integration with trait information from other sources. PMID:24855436

  10. Multi-taxa trait and functional responses to physical disturbance.

    PubMed

    Pedley, Scott M; Dolman, Paul M

    2014-11-01

    Examining assemblage trait responses to environmental stressors extends our understanding beyond patterns of taxonomic diversity and composition, with results potentially transferable among bioregions. But the degree to which trait responses may be generalized across taxonomic groups remains incompletely understood. We compared trait responses among carabids, spiders and plants to an experimentally manipulated gradient of physical disturbance, replicated in open habitats within a forested landscape. Recolonization of recently disturbed habitats is expected to favour species with traits that promote greater dispersal ability, independent of taxa. We specifically predicted that physical disturbance would increase the representation of carabids with smaller body size, wings or wing dimorphism, spiders able to disperse aerially, and plants with therophyte life-history and wind-dispersed seed. We sampled 197 arthropod species (14,738 individuals) and 164 species of plant. The strength of association between each trait and the disturbance intensity was quantified by correlating matrices of species by traits, species abundance by sites and sites by environment, with significance assessed by comparison with a null model. Responses of biological traits varied among taxa but could be consistently interpreted in terms of dispersal ability. Trait shifts for carabid and plant assemblages were as predicted and correspond to those observed in other disturbance regimes. Assemblages after disturbance comprised smaller and winged carabids, and smaller plants with wind-dispersed seed, consistent with selection for species with better dispersal ability. In contrast, aerial dispersal did not appear important in spider recolonization, instead terrestrial dispersal ability was suggested by the increased abundance of larger-bodied and cursorial species. However, larger spider body size was also associated with an active-hunting strategy, also favoured in the post-disturbance environment

  11. Sickle Cell Trait: An Update

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Lenworth N.

    1982-01-01

    A review of the literature on sickle cell trait was completed by Sears in 1978. Since that time, several papers have been published concerning the possible health risks of sickle cell trait. Data presented from these studies show that there is no association with sickle cell trait and overall survival, overall mortality, overall morbidity, frequency and length of hospitalization, short-term survival of renal transplant recipient, and inheritance of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase. Association with sickle cell trait is very likely in the following: splenic infarction at high altitudes (over 10,000 feet), in unpressurized airplane flight and mountain climbing, bacteriuria and pyelonephritis in pregnancy, hyposthenuria, hematuria, and delayed resolution of anterior chamber hyphema. Although these conditions have a statistical significant association with sickle cell trait, they occur quite infrequently. Thus, when they are observed, other causes should be sought before attributing them to sickle cell trait. Reduced mortality from Plasmodium falciparum infection also shows significant association with sickle cell trait. PMID:6752430

  12. Quantitative Trait Loci for Morphological Traits and their Association with Functional Genes in Raphanus sativus

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaona; Choi, Su Ryun; Dhandapani, Vignesh; Rameneni, Jana Jeevan; Li, Xiaonan; Pang, Wenxing; Lee, Ji-Young; Lim, Yong Pyo

    2016-01-01

    Identification of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) governing morphologically important traits enables to comprehend their potential genetic mechanisms in the genetic breeding program. In this study, we used 210 F2 populations derived from a cross between two radish inbred lines (Raphanus sativus) “835” and “B2,” including 258 SSR markers were used to detect QTLs for 11 morphological traits that related to whole plant, leaf, and root yield in 3 years of replicated field test. Total 55 QTLs were detected which were distributed on each linkage group of the Raphanus genome. Individual QTLs accounted for 2.69–12.6 of the LOD value, and 0.82–16.25% of phenotypic variation. Several genomic regions have multiple traits that clustered together, suggested the existence of pleiotropy linkage. Synteny analysis of the QTL regions with A. thaliana genome selected orthologous genes in radish. InDels and SNPs in the parental lines were detected in those regions by Illumina genome sequence. Five identified candidate gene-based markers were validated by co-mapping with underlying QTLs affecting different traits. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed the different expression levels of these five genes in parental lines. In addition, comparative QTL analysis with B. rapa revealed six common QTL regions and four key major evolutionarily conserved crucifer blocks (J, U, R, and W) harboring QTL for morphological traits. The QTL positions identified in this study will provide a valuable resource for identifying more functional genes when whole radish genome sequence is released. Candidate genes identified in this study that co-localized in QTL regions are expected to facilitate in radish breeding programs. PMID:26973691

  13. Quantitative trait loci for yield and related traits in the wheat population Ning7840 x Clark.

    PubMed

    Marza, F; Bai, G-H; Carver, B F; Zhou, W-C

    2006-02-01

    Grain yield and associated agronomic traits are important factors in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) improvement. Knowledge regarding the number, genomic location, and effect of quantitative trait loci (QTL) would facilitate marker-assisted selection and the development of cultivars with desirable characteristics. Our objectives were to identify QTLs directly and indirectly affecting grain yield expression. A population of 132 F12 recombinant inbred lines (RILs) was derived by single-seed descent from a cross between the Chinese facultative wheat Ning7840 and the US soft red winter wheat Clark. Phenotypic data were collected for 15 yield and other agronomic traits in the RILs and parental lines from three locations in Oklahoma from 2001 to 2003. Twenty-nine linkage groups, consisting of 363 AFLP and 47 SSR markers, were identified. Using composite interval mapping (CIM) analysis, 10, 16, 30, and 14 QTLs were detected for yield, yield components, plant adaptation (shattering and lodging resistance, heading date, and plant height), and spike morphology traits, respectively. The QTL effects ranged from 7 to 23%. Marker alleles from Clark were associated with a positive effect for the majority of QTLs for yield and yield components, but gene dispersion was the rule rather than the exception for this RIL population. Often, QTLs were detected in proximal positions for different traits. Consistent, co-localized QTLs were identified in linkage groups 1AL, 1B, 4B, 5A, 6A, and 7A, and less consistent but unique QTLs were identified on 2BL, 2BS, 2DL, and 6B. Results of this study provide a benchmark for future efforts on QTL identification for yield traits. PMID:16369760

  14. Quantitative Trait Loci for Morphological Traits and their Association with Functional Genes in Raphanus sativus.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xiaona; Choi, Su Ryun; Dhandapani, Vignesh; Rameneni, Jana Jeevan; Li, Xiaonan; Pang, Wenxing; Lee, Ji-Young; Lim, Yong Pyo

    2016-01-01

    Identification of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) governing morphologically important traits enables to comprehend their potential genetic mechanisms in the genetic breeding program. In this study, we used 210 F2 populations derived from a cross between two radish inbred lines (Raphanus sativus) "835" and "B2," including 258 SSR markers were used to detect QTLs for 11 morphological traits that related to whole plant, leaf, and root yield in 3 years of replicated field test. Total 55 QTLs were detected which were distributed on each linkage group of the Raphanus genome. Individual QTLs accounted for 2.69-12.6 of the LOD value, and 0.82-16.25% of phenotypic variation. Several genomic regions have multiple traits that clustered together, suggested the existence of pleiotropy linkage. Synteny analysis of the QTL regions with A. thaliana genome selected orthologous genes in radish. InDels and SNPs in the parental lines were detected in those regions by Illumina genome sequence. Five identified candidate gene-based markers were validated by co-mapping with underlying QTLs affecting different traits. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed the different expression levels of these five genes in parental lines. In addition, comparative QTL analysis with B. rapa revealed six common QTL regions and four key major evolutionarily conserved crucifer blocks (J, U, R, and W) harboring QTL for morphological traits. The QTL positions identified in this study will provide a valuable resource for identifying more functional genes when whole radish genome sequence is released. Candidate genes identified in this study that co-localized in QTL regions are expected to facilitate in radish breeding programs.

  15. Quantitative Trait Loci for Morphological Traits and their Association with Functional Genes in Raphanus sativus.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xiaona; Choi, Su Ryun; Dhandapani, Vignesh; Rameneni, Jana Jeevan; Li, Xiaonan; Pang, Wenxing; Lee, Ji-Young; Lim, Yong Pyo

    2016-01-01

    Identification of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) governing morphologically important traits enables to comprehend their potential genetic mechanisms in the genetic breeding program. In this study, we used 210 F2 populations derived from a cross between two radish inbred lines (Raphanus sativus) "835" and "B2," including 258 SSR markers were used to detect QTLs for 11 morphological traits that related to whole plant, leaf, and root yield in 3 years of replicated field test. Total 55 QTLs were detected which were distributed on each linkage group of the Raphanus genome. Individual QTLs accounted for 2.69-12.6 of the LOD value, and 0.82-16.25% of phenotypic variation. Several genomic regions have multiple traits that clustered together, suggested the existence of pleiotropy linkage. Synteny analysis of the QTL regions with A. thaliana genome selected orthologous genes in radish. InDels and SNPs in the parental lines were detected in those regions by Illumina genome sequence. Five identified candidate gene-based markers were validated by co-mapping with underlying QTLs affecting different traits. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed the different expression levels of these five genes in parental lines. In addition, comparative QTL analysis with B. rapa revealed six common QTL regions and four key major evolutionarily conserved crucifer blocks (J, U, R, and W) harboring QTL for morphological traits. The QTL positions identified in this study will provide a valuable resource for identifying more functional genes when whole radish genome sequence is released. Candidate genes identified in this study that co-localized in QTL regions are expected to facilitate in radish breeding programs. PMID:26973691

  16. Effect of two commercial herbicides on life history traits of a human disease vector, Aedes aegypti, in the laboratory setting.

    PubMed

    Morris, Alexandra; Murrell, Ebony G; Klein, Talan; Noden, Bruce H

    2016-07-01

    Some mosquito species utilize the small niches of water that are abundant in farmland habitats. These niches are susceptible to effects from agricultural pesticides, many of which are applied aerially over large tracts of land. One principal form of weed control in agricultural systems involves the development of herbicide-tolerant crops. The impact of sub-agricultural levels of these herbicides on mosquito survival and life-history traits of resulting adults have not been determined. The aim of this study was to test the effect of two commercial herbicides (Beyond and Roundup) on the survivorship, eclosion time, and body mass of Aedes aegypti. First instar A. aegypti larvae were exposed to varying concentrations (270, 550 and 820 μg/m(2) of glyphosate and 0.74, 1.49, 2.24 μL imazamox/m(2)), all treatments being below recommended application rates, of commercial herbicides in a controlled environment and resulting adult mosquitoes were collected and weighed. Exposure to Roundup had a significant negative effect on A. aegypti survivorship at medium and high sub-agricultural application concentrations, and negatively affected adult eclosion time at the highest concentration. However, exposure to low concentrations of Beyond significantly increased A. aegypti survivorship, although adult female mass was decreased at medium sub-agricultural concentrations. These results demonstrate that low concentrations of two different herbicides, which can occur in rural larval habitats as a result of spray drift, can affect the same species of mosquito in both positive and negative ways depending on the herbicide applied. The effects of commercial herbicides on mosquito populations could have an important effect on disease transmission within agricultural settings, where these and other herbicides are extensively applied to reduce weed growth.

  17. Effect of two commercial herbicides on life history traits of a human disease vector, Aedes aegypti, in the laboratory setting.

    PubMed

    Morris, Alexandra; Murrell, Ebony G; Klein, Talan; Noden, Bruce H

    2016-07-01

    Some mosquito species utilize the small niches of water that are abundant in farmland habitats. These niches are susceptible to effects from agricultural pesticides, many of which are applied aerially over large tracts of land. One principal form of weed control in agricultural systems involves the development of herbicide-tolerant crops. The impact of sub-agricultural levels of these herbicides on mosquito survival and life-history traits of resulting adults have not been determined. The aim of this study was to test the effect of two commercial herbicides (Beyond and Roundup) on the survivorship, eclosion time, and body mass of Aedes aegypti. First instar A. aegypti larvae were exposed to varying concentrations (270, 550 and 820 μg/m(2) of glyphosate and 0.74, 1.49, 2.24 μL imazamox/m(2)), all treatments being below recommended application rates, of commercial herbicides in a controlled environment and resulting adult mosquitoes were collected and weighed. Exposure to Roundup had a significant negative effect on A. aegypti survivorship at medium and high sub-agricultural application concentrations, and negatively affected adult eclosion time at the highest concentration. However, exposure to low concentrations of Beyond significantly increased A. aegypti survivorship, although adult female mass was decreased at medium sub-agricultural concentrations. These results demonstrate that low concentrations of two different herbicides, which can occur in rural larval habitats as a result of spray drift, can affect the same species of mosquito in both positive and negative ways depending on the herbicide applied. The effects of commercial herbicides on mosquito populations could have an important effect on disease transmission within agricultural settings, where these and other herbicides are extensively applied to reduce weed growth. PMID:26965703

  18. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers § 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  19. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers § 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  20. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers § 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  1. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers § 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  2. Consumer trait variation influences tritrophic interactions in salt marsh communities

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Anne Randall; Hanley, Torrance C; Orozco, Nohelia P; Zerebecki, Robyn A

    2015-01-01

    The importance of intraspecific variation has emerged as a key question in community ecology, helping to bridge the gap between ecology and evolution. Although much of this work has focused on plant species, recent syntheses have highlighted the prevalence and potential importance of morphological, behavioral, and life history variation within animals for ecological and evolutionary processes. Many small-bodied consumers live on the plant that they consume, often resulting in host plant-associated trait variation within and across consumer species. Given the central position of consumer species within tritrophic food webs, such consumer trait variation may play a particularly important role in mediating trophic dynamics, including trophic cascades. In this study, we used a series of field surveys and laboratory experiments to document intraspecific trait variation in a key consumer species, the marsh periwinkle Littoraria irrorata, based on its host plant species (Spartina alterniflora or Juncus roemerianus) in a mixed species assemblage. We then conducted a 12-week mesocosm experiment to examine the effects of Littoraria trait variation on plant community structure and dynamics in a tritrophic salt marsh food web. Littoraria from different host plant species varied across a suite of morphological and behavioral traits. These consumer trait differences interacted with plant community composition and predator presence to affect overall plant stem height, as well as differentially alter the density and biomass of the two key plant species in this system. Whether due to genetic differences or phenotypic plasticity, trait differences between consumer types had significant ecological consequences for the tritrophic marsh food web over seasonal time scales. By altering the cascading effects of the top predator on plant community structure and dynamics, consumer differences may generate a feedback over longer time scales, which in turn influences the degree of trait

  3. Consumer trait variation influences tritrophic interactions in salt marsh communities.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Anne Randall; Hanley, Torrance C; Orozco, Nohelia P; Zerebecki, Robyn A

    2015-07-01

    The importance of intraspecific variation has emerged as a key question in community ecology, helping to bridge the gap between ecology and evolution. Although much of this work has focused on plant species, recent syntheses have highlighted the prevalence and potential importance of morphological, behavioral, and life history variation within animals for ecological and evolutionary processes. Many small-bodied consumers live on the plant that they consume, often resulting in host plant-associated trait variation within and across consumer species. Given the central position of consumer species within tritrophic food webs, such consumer trait variation may play a particularly important role in mediating trophic dynamics, including trophic cascades. In this study, we used a series of field surveys and laboratory experiments to document intraspecific trait variation in a key consumer species, the marsh periwinkle Littoraria irrorata, based on its host plant species (Spartina alterniflora or Juncus roemerianus) in a mixed species assemblage. We then conducted a 12-week mesocosm experiment to examine the effects of Littoraria trait variation on plant community structure and dynamics in a tritrophic salt marsh food web. Littoraria from different host plant species varied across a suite of morphological and behavioral traits. These consumer trait differences interacted with plant community composition and predator presence to affect overall plant stem height, as well as differentially alter the density and biomass of the two key plant species in this system. Whether due to genetic differences or phenotypic plasticity, trait differences between consumer types had significant ecological consequences for the tritrophic marsh food web over seasonal time scales. By altering the cascading effects of the top predator on plant community structure and dynamics, consumer differences may generate a feedback over longer time scales, which in turn influences the degree of trait

  4. The Research of Vertical Search Engine for Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Weiying; Zhao, Yan; Liu, Bo; Li, Qiang

    Following rapid expansion of huge Agriculture information body on the Web, the efficient Agriculture information gathering on specified top becomes more and more important in search engine research. Through the statement of the developing trend of search engine and sharing agriculture information resource, this paper discusses the necessity of building search engine for agriculture information. The author clarifies the working principles of professional search engine for agriculture and finally analyses the improvement of searching technique of agriculture and proposes a model for agriculture - focused search.

  5. Functional Traits in Parallel Evolutionary Radiations and Trait-Environment Associations in the Cape Floristic Region of South Africa.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Nora; Moore, Timothy E; Mollmann, Hayley Kilroy; Carlson, Jane E; Mocko, Kerri; Martinez-Cabrera, Hugo; Adams, Christopher; Silander, John A; Jones, Cynthia S; Schlichting, Carl D; Holsinger, Kent E

    2015-04-01

    Evolutionary radiations with extreme levels of diversity present a unique opportunity to study the role of the environment in plant evolution. If environmental adaptation played an important role in such radiations, we expect to find associations between functional traits and key climatic variables. Similar trait-environment associations across clades may reflect common responses, while contradictory associations may suggest lineage-specific adaptations. Here, we explore trait-environment relationships in two evolutionary radiations in the fynbos biome of the highly biodiverse Cape Floristic Region (CFR) of South Africa. Protea and Pelargonium are morphologically and evolutionarily diverse genera that typify the CFR yet are substantially different in growth form and morphology. Our analytical approach employs a Bayesian multiple-response generalized linear mixed-effects model, taking into account covariation among traits and controlling for phylogenetic relationships. Of the pairwise trait-environment associations tested, 6 out of 24 were in the same direction and 2 out of 24 were in opposite directions, with the latter apparently reflecting alternative life-history strategies. These findings demonstrate that trait diversity within two plant lineages may reflect both parallel and idiosyncratic responses to the environment, rather than all taxa conforming to a global-scale pattern. Such insights are essential for understanding how trait-environment associations arise and how they influence species diversification.

  6. Functional Traits in Parallel Evolutionary Radiations and Trait-Environment Associations in the Cape Floristic Region of South Africa.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Nora; Moore, Timothy E; Mollmann, Hayley Kilroy; Carlson, Jane E; Mocko, Kerri; Martinez-Cabrera, Hugo; Adams, Christopher; Silander, John A; Jones, Cynthia S; Schlichting, Carl D; Holsinger, Kent E

    2015-04-01

    Evolutionary radiations with extreme levels of diversity present a unique opportunity to study the role of the environment in plant evolution. If environmental adaptation played an important role in such radiations, we expect to find associations between functional traits and key climatic variables. Similar trait-environment associations across clades may reflect common responses, while contradictory associations may suggest lineage-specific adaptations. Here, we explore trait-environment relationships in two evolutionary radiations in the fynbos biome of the highly biodiverse Cape Floristic Region (CFR) of South Africa. Protea and Pelargonium are morphologically and evolutionarily diverse genera that typify the CFR yet are substantially different in growth form and morphology. Our analytical approach employs a Bayesian multiple-response generalized linear mixed-effects model, taking into account covariation among traits and controlling for phylogenetic relationships. Of the pairwise trait-environment associations tested, 6 out of 24 were in the same direction and 2 out of 24 were in opposite directions, with the latter apparently reflecting alternative life-history strategies. These findings demonstrate that trait diversity within two plant lineages may reflect both parallel and idiosyncratic responses to the environment, rather than all taxa conforming to a global-scale pattern. Such insights are essential for understanding how trait-environment associations arise and how they influence species diversification. PMID:25811086

  7. Irradiation of northwest agricultural products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eakin, D. E.; Tingey, G. I.

    1985-02-01

    Irradiation of food for disinfestation and preservation is increasing in importance because of increasing restrictions on various chemical treatments. Irradiation treatment is of particular interest in the Northwest because of a growing supply of agricultural products and the need to develop new export markets. Several products have, or could potentially have, significant export markets if stringent insect ocntrol procedures are developed and followed. Due to the recognized potential benefits of irradiation, this program was conducted to evaluate the benefits of using irradiation on Northwest agricultural products. Commodities currently included in the program are cherries, apples, asparagus, spices, hay, and hides.

  8. Insects represent a link between food animal farms and the urban environment for antibiotic resistance traits.

    PubMed

    Zurek, Ludek; Ghosh, Anuradha

    2014-06-01

    Antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections result in higher patient mortality rates, prolonged hospitalizations, and increased health care costs. Extensive use of antibiotics as growth promoters in the animal industry represents great pressure for evolution and selection of antibiotic-resistant bacteria on farms. Despite growing evidence showing that antibiotic use and bacterial resistance in food animals correlate with resistance in human pathogens, the proof for direct transmission of antibiotic resistance is difficult to provide. In this review, we make a case that insects commonly associated with food animals likely represent a direct and important link between animal farms and urban communities for antibiotic resistance traits. Houseflies and cockroaches have been shown to carry multidrug-resistant clonal lineages of bacteria identical to those found in animal manure. Furthermore, several studies have demonstrated proliferation of bacteria and horizontal transfer of resistance genes in the insect digestive tract as well as transmission of resistant bacteria by insects to new substrates. We propose that insect management should be an integral part of pre- and postharvest food safety strategies to minimize spread of zoonotic pathogens and antibiotic resistance traits from animal farms. Furthermore, the insect link between the agricultural and urban environment presents an additional argument for adopting prudent use of antibiotics in the food animal industry.

  9. Kernel-based whole-genome prediction of complex traits: a review

    PubMed Central

    Morota, Gota; Gianola, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Prediction of genetic values has been a focus of applied quantitative genetics since the beginning of the 20th century, with renewed interest following the advent of the era of whole genome-enabled prediction. Opportunities offered by the emergence of high-dimensional genomic data fueled by post-Sanger sequencing technologies, especially molecular markers, have driven researchers to extend Ronald Fisher and Sewall Wright's models to confront new challenges. In particular, kernel methods are gaining consideration as a regression method of choice for genome-enabled prediction. Complex traits are presumably influenced by many genomic regions working in concert with others (clearly so when considering pathways), thus generating interactions. Motivated by this view, a growing number of statistical approaches based on kernels attempt to capture non-additive effects, either parametrically or non-parametrically. This review centers on whole-genome regression using kernel methods applied to a wide range of quantitative traits of agricultural importance in animals and plants. We discuss various kernel-based approaches tailored to capturing total genetic variation, with the aim of arriving at an enhanced predictive performance in the light of available genome annotation information. Connections between prediction machines born in animal breeding, statistics, and machine learning are revisited, and their empirical prediction performance is discussed. Overall, while some encouraging results have been obtained with non-parametric kernels, recovering non-additive genetic variation in a validation dataset remains a challenge in quantitative genetics. PMID:25360145

  10. Quantitative trait locus analysis of symbiotic nitrogen fixation activity in the model legume Lotus japonicus.

    PubMed

    Tominaga, Akiyoshi; Gondo, Takahiro; Akashi, Ryo; Zheng, Shao-Hui; Arima, Susumu; Suzuki, Akihiro

    2012-05-01

    Many legumes form nitrogen-fixing root nodules. An elevation of nitrogen fixation in such legumes would have significant implications for plant growth and biomass production in agriculture. To identify the genetic basis for the regulation of nitrogen fixation, quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis was conducted with recombinant inbred lines derived from the cross Miyakojima MG-20 × Gifu B-129 in the model legume Lotus japonicus. This population was inoculated with Mesorhizobium loti MAFF303099 and grown for 14 days in pods containing vermiculite. Phenotypic data were collected for acetylene reduction activity (ARA) per plant (ARA/P), ARA per nodule weight (ARA/NW), ARA per nodule number (ARA/NN), NN per plant, NW per plant, stem length (SL), SL without inoculation (SLbac-), shoot dry weight without inoculation (SWbac-), root length without inoculation (RLbac-), and root dry weight (RWbac-), and finally 34 QTLs were identified. ARA/P, ARA/NN, NW, and SL showed strong correlations and QTL co-localization, suggesting that several plant characteristics important for symbiotic nitrogen fixation are controlled by the same locus. QTLs for ARA/P, ARA/NN, NW, and SL, co-localized around marker TM0832 on chromosome 4, were also co-localized with previously reported QTLs for seed mass. This is the first report of QTL analysis for symbiotic nitrogen fixation activity traits.

  11. Insects Represent a Link between Food Animal Farms and the Urban Environment for Antibiotic Resistance Traits

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Anuradha

    2014-01-01

    Antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections result in higher patient mortality rates, prolonged hospitalizations, and increased health care costs. Extensive use of antibiotics as growth promoters in the animal industry represents great pressure for evolution and selection of antibiotic-resistant bacteria on farms. Despite growing evidence showing that antibiotic use and bacterial resistance in food animals correlate with resistance in human pathogens, the proof for direct transmission of antibiotic resistance is difficult to provide. In this review, we make a case that insects commonly associated with food animals likely represent a direct and important link between animal farms and urban communities for antibiotic resistance traits. Houseflies and cockroaches have been shown to carry multidrug-resistant clonal lineages of bacteria identical to those found in animal manure. Furthermore, several studies have demonstrated proliferation of bacteria and horizontal transfer of resistance genes in the insect digestive tract as well as transmission of resistant bacteria by insects to new substrates. We propose that insect management should be an integral part of pre- and postharvest food safety strategies to minimize spread of zoonotic pathogens and antibiotic resistance traits from animal farms. Furthermore, the insect link between the agricultural and urban environment presents an additional argument for adopting prudent use of antibiotics in the food animal industry. PMID:24705326

  12. Agricultural Libraries and Information.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Russell, Keith W., Ed.; Pisa, Maria G., Ed.

    1990-01-01

    Eleven articles address issues relating to agricultural libraries and information, including background on agricultural libraries and information, trend management, document delivery, reference services, user needs and library services, collection development, technologies for international information management, information sources,…

  13. Theme: Delivering Agricultural Literacy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reed, Warren D.; And Others

    1990-01-01

    Eight articles in this theme issue deal with the nationwide implementation of agricultural literacy programs--discovering how to do it. Discussed are experiences in planning and conducting agricultural literacy programs at state and local levels. (JOW)

  14. Traditional Agriculture and Permaculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierce, Dick

    1997-01-01

    Discusses benefits of combining traditional agricultural techniques with the concepts of "permaculture," a framework for revitalizing traditions, culture, and spirituality. Describes school, college, and community projects that have assisted American Indian communities in revitalizing sustainable agricultural practices that incorporate cultural…

  15. Vocational Agriculture in Ponape

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dayrit, Ruben S.

    1975-01-01

    The general objectives of agriculture education in both the elementary and secondary schools in Ponape District are to develop interest in agriculture among students and to provide practical and technical skills in growing crops and raising domestic animals. (Author)

  16. Urban Agricultural Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Corbellini, Margaret

    1991-01-01

    John Bourne High School in Queens, New York, offers an agricultural program enrolling more than 400 students. The curriculum includes agricultural career exploration, plant and animal science, summer land laboratories, and a special education component. (SK)

  17. Strategies for Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crosson, Pierre R.; Rosenberg, Norman J.

    1989-01-01

    Discusses the change of agricultural methods with human population growth. Describes the trends of world food production, changes in farmland, use of fertilizer, and 13 agricultural research institutions. Lists 5 references for further reading. (YP)

  18. Agricultural work safety efforts by Wisconsin extension agricultural agents.

    PubMed

    Chapman, L J; Schuler, R T; Skjolaas, C A; Wilkinson, T L

    1995-01-01

    This study investigated the agricultural work-related safety and health programming of county-level cooperative extension agents who work through land grant universities to provide a range of educational programs to agricultural producers. A questionnaire was designed and administered to all 89 Wisconsin agriculture and agribusiness extension county faculty. The questionnaire obtained valid responses from 98.9 percent of the agents. Ninety percent of all agents conducted some occupational safety and health promotion programming in the last year. These activities occupied an average of 4.8 days per agent per year. Most of the reported activities were group programs for the agricultural labor force that involved other extension agents and included the use of videotapes. The greatest barrier to more programming was lack of time on the part of both the agricultural work force and the agents. Most extension agents placed greater emphasis on training in how to work safely around hazards than on how to recognize and permanently correct hazards. For future programs agents requested more short format materials to use in programming, such as fact sheets, videotapes, and farm hazard inspection checklists. Agents are important training delivery resources for controlling farm-related injury and disease. Agents could be more effective with more time, better materials, and with more emphasis on hazard correction in workplace safety programs.

  19. A database of lotic invertebrate traits for North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vieira, Nicole K.M.; Poff, N. LeRoy; Carlisle, Daren M.; Moulton, Stephen R.; Koski, Marci L.; Kondratieff, Boris C.

    2006-01-01

    The assessment and study of stream communities may be enhanced if functional characteristics such as life-history, habitat preference, and reproductive strategy were more widely available for specific taxa. Species traits can be used to develop these functional indicators because many traits directly link functional roles of organisms with controlling environmental factors (for example, flow, substratum, temperature). In addition, some functional traits may not be constrained by taxonomy and are thus applicable at multiple spatial scales. Unfortunately, a comprehensive summary of traits for North American invertebrate taxa does not exist. Consequently, the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment Program in cooperation with Colorado State University compiled a database of traits for North American invertebrates. A total of 14,127 records for over 2,200 species, 1,165 genera, and 249 families have been entered into the database from 967 publications, texts and reports. Quality-assurance procedures indicated error rates of less than 3 percent in the data entry process. Species trait information was most complete for insect taxa. Traits describing resource acquisition and habitat preferences were most frequently reported, whereas those describing physiological tolerances and reproductive biology were the least frequently reported in the literature. The database is not exhaustive of the literature for North American invertebrates and is biased towards aquatic insects, but it represents a first attempt to compile traits in a web-accessible database. This report describes the database and discusses important decisions necessary for identifying ecologically relevant, environmentally sensitive, non-redundant, and statistically tractable traits for use in bioassessment programs.

  20. St Vincent Youth and Careers in Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Webster, Nicole; Ganpat, Wayne

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Given the ageing farming population in the Caribbean and the importance of agriculture to economy, there is cause for concern about the future of farming. This study seeks to explore the extent to which students pursuing agriculture in secondary schools in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) were likely to engage in farming as well as…

  1. Agriculture for Little People. Publication No. 0004.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gasior, Albert G.

    The document is a collection of teacher guides to sample units introducing agriculture at the primary level; part or all of the units can be used along with the regular curriculum during the school year. Intended to acquaint K-3 students with agriculture's important role, the purpose of the course is to impart basic knowledge of materials, tools,…

  2. Exploring the Paradox of Supervised Agricultural Experience Programs in Agricultural Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Elizabeth B.; Moore, Gary E.

    2007-01-01

    Agricultural teachers in North Carolina were surveyed to assess their attitudes toward Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) and to identify barriers to implementation of SAE in their schools. The teachers gave the politically correct answers about why SAE was important. The teachers indicated that SAE was important (8.46 on a 10 point scale)…

  3. Association mapping of leaf traits, flowering time, and phytate content in Brassica rapa.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jianjun; Paulo, Maria-João; Jamar, Diaan; Lou, Ping; van Eeuwijk, Fred; Bonnema, Guusje; Vreugdenhil, Dick; Koornneef, Maarten

    2007-10-01

    Association mapping was used to investigate the genetic basis of variation within Brassica rapa, which is an important vegetable and oil crop. We analyzed the variation of phytate and phosphate levels in seeds and leaves and additional developmental and morphological traits in a set of diverse B. rapa accessions and tested association of these traits with AFLP markers. The analysis of population structure revealed four subgroups in the population. Trait values differed between these subgroups, thus defining associations between population structure and trait values, even for traits such as phytate and phosphate levels. Marker-trait associations were investigated both with and without taking population structure into account. One hundred and seventy markers were found to be associated with the observed traits without correction for population structure. Association analysis with correction for population structure led to the identification of 27 markers, 6 of which had known map positions; 3 of these were confirmed in additional QTL mapping studies.

  4. Functional traits explain light and size response of growth rates in tropical tree species.

    PubMed

    Rüger, Nadja; Wirth, Christian; Wright, S Joseph; Condit, Richard

    2012-12-01

    Relationships between functional traits and average or potential demographic rates have provided insight into the functional constraints and trade-offs underlying life-history strategies of tropical tree species. We have extended this framework by decomposing growth rates of -130 000 trees of 171 Neotropical tree species into intrinsic growth and the response of growth to light and size. We related these growth characteristics to multiple functional traits (wood density, adult stature, seed mass, leaf traits) in a hierarchical Bayesian model that accounted for measurement error and intraspecific variability of functional traits. Wood density was the most important trait determining all three growth characteristics. Intrinsic growth rates were additionally strongly related to adult stature, while all traits contributed to light response. Our analysis yielded a predictive model that allows estimation of growth characteristics for rare species on the basis of a few easily measurable morphological traits.

  5. Effect of Habitat Conditions and Plant Traits on Leaf Damage in the Carduoideae Subfamily

    PubMed Central

    Münzbergová, Zuzana; Skuhrovec, Jiří

    2013-01-01

    Plant traits are the key factors that determine herbivore foraging selection. The traits serving as defense traits against herbivores represent a wide range of traits, such as chemical, physiological, morphological and life-history traits. While many studies considered plant defense traits at the within-species scale, much less is known from comparisons of a wide range of closely related species. The aim of this study was to identify factors responsible for the intensity of leaf damage in the Carduoideae subfamily of Asteraceae, which hosts many invasive species and thus is potential candidate plant species that could be controlled by biological control. Specifically, we wanted to see the relative importance of habitat characteristics, plant size and plants traits in determining the degree of folivory. The study identified several defense traits able to explain differences in herbivory between species after accounting for differences in the habitats in which the species occur and the plant size. Specifically, the most important traits were traits related to the quality of the leaf tissue expressed as the content of phosphorus, water and specific leaf area, which suggests that the leaf quality had a more important effect on the degree of herbivory than the presence of specific defense mechanisms such as spines and hair. Leaf quality is thus a candidate factor that drives herbivore choice when selecting which plant to feed on and should be considered when assessing the danger that a herbivore will switch hosts when introduced to a new range. PMID:23717643

  6. Agriculture Business and Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seperich, George; And Others

    This curriculum guide is intended for vocational agriculture teachers who deliver agricultural business and management programs at the secondary or postsecondary level. It is based on the Arizona validated occupational competencies and tasks for management and supervisory positions in agricultural business. The competency/skill and task list…

  7. Agricultural Education: Value Adding.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riesenberg, Lou E.; And Others

    1989-01-01

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

  8. Information for Agricultural Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaungamno, E. E.

    This paper describes the major international agricultural information services, sources, and systems; outlines the existing information situation in Tanzania as it relates to problems of agricultural development; and reviews the improvements in information provision resources required to support the process of agricultural development in Tanzania.…

  9. Chapter 3: Cropland Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In 2013, cropland agriculture resulted in total emissions of approximately 209 MMT CO2 eq. of greenhouse gases (GHG). Cropland agriculture is responsible for almost half (46%) of all emissions from the agricultural sector. Nitrous oxide (N2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), and methane (CH4) emissions from c...

  10. Dutch Agricultural Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Netherlands Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, The Hauge.

    Agricultural Education in the Netherlands is categorized as Scientific, Higher Secondary, Middle Secondary, and Lower Secondary. Scientific education is given at the agricultural university which has a 6- or 7-year curriculum. Higher secondary education is given at agricultural and horticultural colleges with a 3- to 4-year curriculum. Middle…

  11. Agricultural Structures, Volume II.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Linhardt, Richard E.; Burhoe, Steve

    This guide to a curriculum unit in agricultural structures is designed to expand the curriculum materials available in vocational agriculture in Missouri. It and Agricultural Structures I (see note) provide reference materials to systematize the curriculum. The six units cover working with concrete (19 lessons, 2 laboratory exercises), drawing and…

  12. Agriculture, Environmental Education Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Project I-C-E, Green Bay, WI.

    This agriculture guide, for use at the secondary level, is one of a series of guides, K-12, which were developed by teachers to help introduce environmental education into the total curriculum. Environmental problems are present in every community where agriculture education is offered, and therefore many agriculture teachers have included some…

  13. Forming impressions from incongruent traits.

    PubMed

    Casselden, P A; Hampson, S E

    1990-08-01

    The factors that affect the ease with which impressions are formed from incongruent trait pairs are investigated. In Experiments 1 and 2, trait pairs that were both descriptively and evaluatively congruent, as well as ones that were only evaluatively congruent, were found to be more imaginable and to be perceived as more frequently co-occurring than incongruent trait pairs. In Experiment 3, response latency provided a converging measure of ease of imaginability. Experiment 4 examined written descriptions of targets described by these trait pairs, and found more attempts to integrate the congruent than the incongruent pairs. These findings are discussed in terms of the relation between laypersons' impressions of personality and formal personality assessment.

  14. Authoritarian Personality Traits Among Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dunham, J.

    1973-01-01

    The results are reported of an investigation into the social attitudes of the total population (800) of one English university using Adorno's F scale to measure authoritarian personality traits. (Author)

  15. Forming impressions from incongruent traits.

    PubMed

    Casselden, P A; Hampson, S E

    1990-08-01

    The factors that affect the ease with which impressions are formed from incongruent trait pairs are investigated. In Experiments 1 and 2, trait pairs that were both descriptively and evaluatively congruent, as well as ones that were only evaluatively congruent, were found to be more imaginable and to be perceived as more frequently co-occurring than incongruent trait pairs. In Experiment 3, response latency provided a converging measure of ease of imaginability. Experiment 4 examined written descriptions of targets described by these trait pairs, and found more attempts to integrate the congruent than the incongruent pairs. These findings are discussed in terms of the relation between laypersons' impressions of personality and formal personality assessment. PMID:2213498

  16. Independent Evolution of Leaf and Root Traits within and among Temperate Grassland Plant Communities

    PubMed Central

    Kembel, Steven W.; Cahill, James F.

    2011-01-01

    In this study, we used data from temperate grassland plant communities in Alberta, Canada to test two longstanding hypotheses in ecology: 1) that there has been correlated evolution of the leaves and roots of plants due to selection for an integrated whole-plant resource uptake strategy, and 2) that trait diversity in ecological communities is generated by adaptations to the conditions in different habitats. We tested the first hypothesis using phylogenetic comparative methods to test for evidence of correlated evolution of suites of leaf and root functional traits in these grasslands. There were consistent evolutionary correlations among traits related to plant resource uptake strategies within leaf tissues, and within root tissues. In contrast, there were inconsistent correlations between the traits of leaves and the traits of roots, suggesting different evolutionary pressures on the above and belowground components of plant morphology. To test the second hypothesis, we evaluated the relative importance of two components of trait diversity: within-community variation (species trait values relative to co-occurring species; α traits) and among-community variation (the average trait value in communities where species occur; β traits). Trait diversity was mostly explained by variation among co-occurring species, not among-communities. Additionally, there was a phylogenetic signal in the within-community trait values of species relative to co-occurring taxa, but not in their habitat associations or among-community trait variation. These results suggest that sorting of pre-existing trait variation into local communities can explain the leaf and root trait diversity in these grasslands. PMID:21687704

  17. Clinical and personality traits in emotional disorders: Evidence of a common framework.

    PubMed

    Mahaffey, Brittain L; Watson, David; Clark, Lee Anna; Kotov, Roman

    2016-08-01

    Certain clinical traits (e.g., ruminative response style, self-criticism, perfectionism, anxiety sensitivity, fear of negative evaluation, and thought suppression) increase the risk for and chronicity of emotional disorders. Similar to traditional personality traits, they are considered dispositional and typically show high temporal stability. Because the personality and clinical-traits literatures evolved largely independently, connections between them are not fully understood. We sought to map the interface between a widely studied set of clinical and personality traits. Two samples (N = 385 undergraduates; N = 188 psychiatric outpatients) completed measures of personality traits, clinical traits, and an interview-based assessment of emotional-disorder symptoms. First, the joint factor structure of these traits was examined in each sample. Second, structural equation modeling was used to clarify the effects of clinical traits in the prediction of clinical symptoms beyond negative temperament. Third, the incremental validity of clinical traits beyond a more comprehensive set of higher-order and lower-order personality traits was examined using hierarchical regression. Clinical and personality traits were highly correlated and jointly defined a 3-factor structure-Negative Temperament, Positive Temperament, and Disinhibition-in both samples, with all clinical traits loading on the Negative Temperament factor. Clinical traits showed modest but significant incremental validity in explaining symptoms after accounting for personality traits. These data indicate that clinical traits relevant to emotional disorders fit well within the traditional personality framework and offer some unique contributions to the prediction of psychopathology, but it is important to distinguish their effects from negative temperament/neuroticism. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27505406

  18. Mapping quantitative trait loci in selected breeding populations: A segregation distortion approach.

    PubMed

    Cui, Y; Zhang, F; Xu, J; Li, Z; Xu, S

    2015-12-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping is often conducted in line-crossing experiments where a sample of individuals is randomly selected from a pool of all potential progeny. QTLs detected from such an experiment are important for us to understand the genetic mechanisms governing a complex trait, but may not be directly relevant to plant breeding if they are not detected from the breeding population where selection is targeting for. QTLs segregating in one population may not necessarily segregate in another population. To facilitate marker-assisted selection, QTLs must be detected from the very population which the selection is targeting. However, selected breeding populations often have depleted genetic variation with small population sizes, resulting in low power in detecting useful QTLs. On the other hand, if selection is effective, loci controlling the selected trait will deviate from the expected Mendelian segregation ratio. In this study, we proposed to detect QTLs in selected breeding populations via the detection of marker segregation distortion in either a single population or multiple populations using the same selection scheme. Simulation studies showed that QTL can be detected in strong selected populations with selected population sizes as small as 25 plants. We applied the new method to detect QTLs in two breeding populations of rice selected for high grain yield. Seven QTLs were identified, four of which have been validated in advanced generations in a follow-up study. Cloned genes in the vicinity of the four QTLs were also reported in the literatures. This mapping-by-selection approach provides a new avenue for breeders to improve breeding progress. The new method can be applied to breeding programs not only in rice but also in other agricultural species including crops, trees and animals.

  19. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  20. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  1. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  2. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  3. Inheritance and linkage map positions of genes conferring agromorphological traits in Lens culinaris Medik

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agromorphological traits have immense importance in breeding lentils for higher yield and stability. We studied the genetics and identified map positions of some important agro-morphological traits including days to 50% flowering, plant height, seed diameter, 100 seed weight, cotyledon color, and gr...

  4. Migrant labor in agriculture: an international comparison.

    PubMed

    Martin, P L

    1985-01-01

    The May 1984 Conference on Migrant Labor in Agriculture at the University of California-Davis discussed papers by 22 farm labor experts from 12 nations. Each industrial nation utilizes a different set of public and private policies to supply workers for labor-intensive agriculture, but none is entirely satisfactory. Labor-intensive agriculture is becoming more dependent on workers who are shut out of labor markets. Some countries have simply accepted foreign workers in agriculture, while others have adopted policies to integrate farm and nonfarm labor markets. Polices to reduce agriculture's reliance on workers-without-options include restructuring employment practices to employ fewer seasonal workers for longer periods, mechanizing production, and importing fruits and vegetables from nearby developing countries. This article explains the salient features of labor-intensive agriculture, the various polices for obtaining seasonal farmworkers, and options to reduce farming's dependence on migrant labor.

  5. Underdispersion and overdispersion of traits in terrestrial snail communities on islands.

    PubMed

    Astor, Tina; Strengbom, Joachim; Berg, Matty P; Lenoir, Lisette; Marteinsdóttir, Bryndís; Bengtsson, Jan

    2014-06-01

    Understanding and disentangling different processes underlying the assembly and diversity of communities remains a key challenge in ecology. Species can assemble into communities either randomly or due to deterministic processes. Deterministic assembly leads to species being more similar (underdispersed) or more different (overdispersed) in certain traits than would be expected by chance. However, the relative importance of those processes is not well understood for many organisms, including terrestrial invertebrates. Based on knowledge of a broad range of species traits, we tested for the presence of trait underdispersion (indicating dispersal or environmental filtering) and trait overdispersion (indicating niche partitioning) and their relative importance in explaining land snail community composition on lake islands. The analysis of community assembly was performed using a functional diversity index (Rao's quadratic entropy) in combination with a null model approach. Regression analysis with the effect sizes of the assembly tests and environmental variables gave information on the strength of under- and overdispersion along environmental gradients. Additionally, we examined the link between community weighted mean trait values and environmental variables using a CWM-RDA. We found both trait underdispersion and trait overdispersion, but underdispersion (eight traits) was more frequently detected than overdispersion (two traits). Underdispersion was related to four environmental variables (tree cover, habitat diversity, productivity of ground vegetation, and location on an esker ridge). Our results show clear evidence for underdispersion in traits driven by environmental filtering, but no clear evidence for dispersal filtering. We did not find evidence for overdispersion of traits due to diet or body size, but overdispersion in shell shape may indicate niche differentiation between snail species driven by small-scale habitat heterogeneity. The use of species

  6. Underdispersion and overdispersion of traits in terrestrial snail communities on islands

    PubMed Central

    Astor, Tina; Strengbom, Joachim; Berg, Matty P; Lenoir, Lisette; Marteinsdóttir, Bryndís; Bengtsson, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Understanding and disentangling different processes underlying the assembly and diversity of communities remains a key challenge in ecology. Species can assemble into communities either randomly or due to deterministic processes. Deterministic assembly leads to species being more similar (underdispersed) or more different (overdispersed) in certain traits than would be expected by chance. However, the relative importance of those processes is not well understood for many organisms, including terrestrial invertebrates. Based on knowledge of a broad range of species traits, we tested for the presence of trait underdispersion (indicating dispersal or environmental filtering) and trait overdispersion (indicating niche partitioning) and their relative importance in explaining land snail community composition on lake islands. The analysis of community assembly was performed using a functional diversity index (Rao's quadratic entropy) in combination with a null model approach. Regression analysis with the effect sizes of the assembly tests and environmental variables gave information on the strength of under- and overdispersion along environmental gradients. Additionally, we examined the link between community weighted mean trait values and environmental variables using a CWM-RDA. We found both trait underdispersion and trait overdispersion, but underdispersion (eight traits) was more frequently detected than overdispersion (two traits). Underdispersion was related to four environmental variables (tree cover, habitat diversity, productivity of ground vegetation, and location on an esker ridge). Our results show clear evidence for underdispersion in traits driven by environmental filtering, but no clear evidence for dispersal filtering. We did not find evidence for overdispersion of traits due to diet or body size, but overdispersion in shell shape may indicate niche differentiation between snail species driven by small-scale habitat heterogeneity. The use of species

  7. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases §...

  8. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases §...

  9. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases §...

  10. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases §...

  11. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases §...

  12. 7 CFR 944.700 - Fresh prune import regulation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing....700 Fresh prune import regulation. (a) Pursuant to section 8e of the Agricultural Marketing Agreement... tolerance for defects provided in the United States Standards for Grades of Fresh Plums and Prunes (7 CFR...

  13. 7 CFR 999.300 - Regulation governing importation of raisins.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Regulation governing importation of raisins. 999.300 Section 999.300 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and Orders; Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts), DEPARTMENT OF...

  14. Genetic analysis of first lactation production traits in Kankrej cattle

    PubMed Central

    Ankuya, K. J.; Pareek, N. K.; Patel, M. P.; Rathod, B. S.; Prajapati, K. B.; Patel, J. B.

    2016-01-01

    Aim: The aim was to estimate genetic factors affecting the first lactation milk production traits in Kankrej cattle of North Gujarat. Materials and Methods: The 475 first lactation records of Kankrej cows that were maintained at the Livestock Research Station, Sardarkrushinagar Dantiwada Agricultural University, Sardarkrushinagar, Gujarat, over a period of 35 years from 1980 to 2014 were studied. The least squares maximum likelihood program was used to estimate genetic parameters of first lactation traits. Heritability was estimated through paternal half-sib analysis in adjusted data. Results: The heritability estimate for production traits was 0.40±0.17, 0.45±0.17, 0.35±0.18, and 0.20±0.14 for standard 300 days milk yield (F300Y), total lactation milk yield (FLY), wet average (FWA), and lactation length (FLL), respectively, in the first parity. All the genetic and phenotypic correlations among different production efficiency traits were high and positive. Genetic correlations between F300Y and FLY, FLL, and FWA were 0.80±0.20, 0.59±0.16, and 0.81±0.32, where as the phenotypic correlations were 0.969, 0.688, and 0.868, respectively. Genetic correlations of FLY with FLL and FWA were 0.60±0.13 and 0.79±0.20, whereas the phenotypic correlations were 0.777 and 0.817, respectively. Genetic and phenotypic correlation between FLL and FWA was 0.63±0.28 and 0.31, respectively. Conclusion: The heritability estimate of all first parity lactation traits waslow to medium (0.20-0.45) indicated the scope for further improvement in this trait through selection as well as managemental practice. Higher genetic and phenotypic correlation between thefirst lactation milk production traits gives theidea that genetic gain due to selection for one trait also givesmorecorrelated response of selection for other traits which is economically advantageous. PMID:27397993

  15. Modelling the ecological niche from functional traits

    PubMed Central

    Kearney, Michael; Simpson, Stephen J.; Raubenheimer, David; Helmuth, Brian

    2010-01-01

    The niche concept is central to ecology but is often depicted descriptively through observing associations between organisms and habitats. Here, we argue for the importance of mechanistically modelling niches based on functional traits of organisms and explore the possibilities for achieving this through the integration of three theoretical frameworks: biophysical ecology (BE), the geometric framework for nutrition (GF) and dynamic energy budget (DEB) models. These three frameworks are fundamentally based on the conservation laws of thermodynamics, describing energy and mass balance at the level of the individual and capturing the prodigious predictive power of the concepts of ‘homeostasis’ and ‘evolutionary fitness’. BE and the GF provide mechanistic multi-dimensional depictions of climatic and nutritional niches, respectively, providing a foundation for linking organismal traits (morphology, physiology, behaviour) with habitat characteristics. In turn, they provide driving inputs and cost functions for mass/energy allocation within the individual as determined by DEB models. We show how integration of the three frameworks permits calculation of activity constraints, vital rates (survival, development, growth, reproduction) and ultimately population growth rates and species distributions. When integrated with contemporary niche theory, functional trait niche models hold great promise for tackling major questions in ecology and evolutionary biology. PMID:20921046

  16. Mapping quantitative trait loci for five forage quality traits in a sorghum-sudangrass hybrid.

    PubMed

    Li, J Q; Wang, L H; Zhan, Q W; Liu, Y L; Zhang, Q; Li, J F; Fan, F F

    2015-01-01

    The identification of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) affecting forage quality traits enables an understanding of the genetic mechanism of these loci. The aim of the present study was to detect QTLs for the whole-plant protein content (WP), whole-plant fat content (WF), neutral detergent fiber (NDF), acid detergent fiber (ADF), and whole-plant ash content (WA) using a population of 184 F2 individuals from a cross between sorghum Tx623A and sudangrass Sa. Correlation analysis was performed between the five forage quality traits. WP was found to be positively correlated with WF, NDF, and ADF. Furthermore, NDF was positively correlated with ADF but negatively correlated with WA. A genetic map with 124 SSR markers was constructed for QTL mapping. A total of 12 QTLs associated with the five forage quality traits were detected. Of these QTLs, qNDF3, qNDF8, and qADF8 explained more than 10% of the phenotypic variation. Additionally, although all of the QTLs exhibited additive and dominant effects, they mainly exhibited dominant effects. Our results provide important information for marker-assisted selection breeding of sorghum-sudangrass hybrids. PMID:26535640

  17. Alpine climate alters the relationships between leaf and root morphological traits but not chemical traits.

    PubMed

    Geng, Yan; Wang, Liang; Jin, Dongmei; Liu, Huiying; He, Jin-Sheng

    2014-06-01

    Leaves and fine roots are among the most important and dynamic components of terrestrial ecosystems. To what extent plants synchronize their resource capture strategies above- and belowground remains uncertain. Existing results of trait relationships between leaf and root showed great inconsistency, which may be partly due to the differences in abiotic environmental conditions such as climate and soil. Moreover, there is currently little evidence on whether and how the stringent environments of high-altitude alpine ecosystems alter the coordination between above- and belowground. Here we measured six sets of analogous traits for both leaves and fine roots of 139 species collected from Tibetan alpine grassland and Mongolian temperate grassland. N, P and N:P ratio of leaves and fine roots were positively correlated, independent of biogeographic regions, phylogenetic affiliation or climate. In contrast, leaves and fine roots seem to regulate morphological traits more independently. The specific leaf area (SLA)-specific root length (SRL) correlation shifted from negative at sites under low temperature to positive at warmer sites. The cold climate of alpine regions may impose different constraints on shoots and roots, selecting simultaneously for high SLA leaves for rapid C assimilation during the short growing season, but low SRL roots with high physical robustness to withstand soil freezing. In addition, there might be more community heterogeneity in cold soils, resulting in multidirectional strategies of root in resource acquisition. Thus our results demonstrated that alpine climate alters the relationships between leaf and root morphological but not chemical traits.

  18. Applications of spectral inversion to understanding vegetation functional trait relationships

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shiklomanov, A. N.; Dietze, M.; Viskari, T.; Townsend, P. A.; Serbin, S.

    2015-12-01

    Spectral data from both field observations and remote sensing platforms are a rich source of information for studying plant traits. Traditional approaches to using spectral data for studying vegetation have proven effective in sensor-, site-, or plant type-specific settings, but differences in model assumptions and failure to account for uncertainties have hindered efforts to synthesize observations from different sources and use spectral data in a predictive capacity. Here we present a novel approach that uses Bayesian inversion of the PROSPECT 5 leaf radiative transfer model (RTM) to investigate the ability of spectral data to inform our understanding of plant functional traits. First, we validated our method by comparing inversion results to independent measurements of relevant leaf structural and biochemical parameters. Second, we tested the accuracy and precision of RTM parameter retrieval as a function of spectral resolution and quality by performing inversions on simulated observations for a variety of common remote sensing platforms. We observed predictable increases in parameter uncertainty and covariance with declining spectral resolution, but we also found that the measurement characteristics of all sensors are capable of providing information about at least some of the parameters of interest. Finally, we applied our inversion to a large database of field spectra and plant traits spanning tropical, temperate, and boreal forests, agricultural plots, arid shrublands, and tundra to identify dominant sources of variability and characterize trade-offs in plant functional traits. We found substantial intraspecific variability in traits and explored the extent to which this variability falls along the same axes as the interspecific leaf economics spectrum. Ultimately, our results show that Bayesian RTM inversion provides a powerful framework for using spectral data to inform our understanding of plant functional traits and how they are linked with ecosystem

  19. Recording of direct health traits in Austria--experience report with emphasis on aspects of availability for breeding purposes.

    PubMed

    Egger-Danner, C; Fuerst-Waltl, B; Obritzhauser, W; Fuerst, C; Schwarzenbacher, H; Grassauer, B; Mayerhofer, M; Koeck, A

    2012-05-01

    A project to establish an Austria-wide health-monitoring system for cattle was launched in 2006. Veterinary diagnostic data subject to documentation by law [Law on the Control of Veterinary Medicinal Products (Tierarzneimittelkontrollgesetz)] are standardized, validated, and recorded in a central database. This Austria-wide project is a collaboration among agricultural and veterinary organizations as well as universities, and is also supported by the Austrian government. In addition to providing information for herd management and preventive measures, further objectives of the project include estimating breeding values for health traits and monitoring the overall health status of Austria's cattle. To ensure a high level of participation from farmers and veterinarians, data security issues are extremely important. Valid data are the prerequisite for the efficient use of health records. The challenge hereby is to distinguish between farms with low frequencies of diseases and incomplete documentation and recording. Measures were undertaken to establish a routine monitoring system for direct health traits. A routine genetic evaluation for direct health traits as part of the joint breeding value estimation program between Germany and Austria was introduced for Fleckvieh in December 2010, based on diagnostic data from 5,428 farms with 147,764 Fleckvieh cows. In 2010 to 2011, the reporting of direct health traits as a compulsory part of performance recording and the breeding program was introduced as well. The overall challenge is the availability of sufficient valid direct health data for reliable breeding values. Practical experience gained in Austria in setting up a health registration system, focusing mainly on the availability of direct health data for breeding purposes with its successes and difficulties, is described. PMID:22541507

  20. Linking Tropical Forest Function to Hydraulic Traits in a Size-Structured and Trait-Based Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christoffersen, B. O.; Gloor, E. U.; Fauset, S.; Fyllas, N.; Galbraith, D.; Baker, T. R.; Rowland, L.; Fisher, R.; Binks, O.; Mencuccini, M.; Malhi, Y.; Stahl, C.; Wagner, F. H.; Bonal, D.; da Costa, A. C. L.; Ferreira, L.; Meir, P.

    2014-12-01

    A major weakness of forest ecosystem models applied to Amazonia is their inability to capture the diversity of responses to changes in water availability commonly observed within and across forest communities, severely hampering efforts to predict the fate of Amazon forests under climate change. Such models often prescribe moisture sensitivity using heuristic response functions which are uniform across all individuals and lack important knowledge about trade-offs in hydraulic traits. We address this weakness by implementing a process representation of plant hydraulics into an individual- and trait-based model (Trait Forest Simulator; TFS) intended for application at discrete sites across Amazonia. The model represents a trade-off in the safety and efficiency of water conduction in xylem tissue through hydraulic traits, which then lead to variation in plant water use and growth dynamics. The model accounts for the buffering effects of leaf and stem capacitance on leaf water potential at short time scales, and cavitation-induced reductions in whole-plant conductance over longer periods of water stress. We explore multiple possible links between this hydraulic trait spectrum and other whole-plant traits, such as maximum photosynthetic capacity and wood density. The model is shown to greatly improve the diversity of tree response to seasonal changes in water availability as well as response to drought, as determined by comparison with sap flux and stem dendrometry measurements. Importantly, this individual- and trait-based framework provides a testbed for identifying both critical processes and functional traits needed for inclusion in coarse-scale Dynamic Global Vegetation Models, which will lead to reduced uncertainty in the future state of Amazon tropical forests.

  1. [Effects of agricultural practices on community structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in agricultural ecosystem: a review].

    PubMed

    Sheng, Ping-Ping; Li, Min; Liu, Run-Jin

    2011-06-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are rich in diversity in agricultural ecosystem, playing a vital role based on their unique community structure. Host plants and environmental factors have important effects on AM fungal community structure, so do the agricultural practices which deserve to pay attention to. This paper summarized the research advances in the effects of agricultural practices such as irrigation, fertilization, crop rotation, intercropping, tillage, and pesticide application on AM fungal community structure, analyzed the related possible mechanisms, discussed the possible ways in improving AM fungal community structure in agricultural ecosystem, and put forward a set of countermeasures, i.e., improving fertilization system and related integrated techniques, increasing plant diversity in agricultural ecosystem, and inoculating AM fungi, to enhance the AM fungal diversity in agricultural ecosystem. The existing problems in current agricultural practices and further research directions were also proposed.

  2. 7 CFR 319.37 - Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. 319.37 Section 319.37 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of... QUARANTINE NOTICES Plants for Planting 1 2 § 319.37 Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal...

  3. 7 CFR 319.37 - Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. 319.37 Section 319.37 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of... QUARANTINE NOTICES Plants for Planting 1 2 § 319.37 Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal...

  4. 7 CFR 319.37 - Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Prohibitions and restrictions on importation; disposal of articles refused importation. 319.37 Section 319.37 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of... QUARANTINE NOTICES Plants for Planting 1, 2 § 319.37 Prohibitions and restrictions on importation;...

  5. 7 CFR 1219.58 - Importer associations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE HASS AVOCADO PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION Hass Avocado Promotion, Research, and Information Order Budgets, Expenses, and Assessments § 1219.58 Importer associations. (a) An association of avocado importers is eligible to...

  6. 7 CFR 1219.58 - Importer associations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE HASS AVOCADO PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION Hass Avocado Promotion, Research, and Information Order Budgets, Expenses, and Assessments § 1219.58 Importer associations. (a) An association of avocado importers is eligible to...

  7. 7 CFR 1219.58 - Importer associations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE HASS AVOCADO PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION Hass Avocado Promotion, Research, and Information Order Budgets, Expenses, and Assessments § 1219.58 Importer associations. (a) An association of avocado importers is eligible to...

  8. Geologic research in support of sustainable agriculture

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gough, L.P.; Herring, J.R.

    1993-01-01

    The importance and role of the geosciences in studies of sustainable agriculture include such traditional research areas as, agromineral resource assessments, the mapping and classification of soils and soil amendments, and the evaluation of landscapes for their vulnerability to physical and chemical degradation. Less traditional areas of study, that are increasing in societal importance because of environmental concerns and research into sustainable systems in general, include regional geochemical studies of plant and animal trace element deficiencies and toxicities, broad-scale water quality investigations, agricultural chemicals and the hydrogeologic interface, and minimally processed and ion-exchange agrominerals. We discuss the importance and future of phosphate in the US and world based on human population growth, projected agromineral demands in general, and the unavailability of new, high-quality agricultural lands. We also present examples of studies that relate geochemistry and the hydrogeologic characteristics of a region to the bioavailability and cycling of trace elements important to sustainable agricultural systems. ?? 1993.

  9. An optimal strategy for functional mapping of dynamic trait loci.

    PubMed

    Jin, Tianbo; Li, Jiahan; Guo, Ying; Zhou, Xiaojing; Yang, Runqing; Wu, Rongling

    2010-02-01

    As an emerging powerful approach for mapping quantitative trait loci (QTLs) responsible for dynamic traits, functional mapping models the time-dependent mean vector with biologically meaningful equations and are likely to generate biologically relevant and interpretable results. Given the autocorrelation nature of a dynamic trait, functional mapping needs the implementation of the models for the structure of the covariance matrix. In this article, we have provided a comprehensive set of approaches for modelling the covariance structure and incorporated each of these approaches into the framework of functional mapping. The Bayesian information criterion (BIC) values are used as a model selection criterion to choose the optimal combination of the submodels for the mean vector and covariance structure. In an example for leaf age growth from a rice molecular genetic project, the best submodel combination was found between the Gaussian model for the correlation structure, power equation of order 1 for the variance and the power curve for the mean vector. Under this combination, several significant QTLs for leaf age growth trajectories were detected on different chromosomes. Our model can be well used to study the genetic architecture of dynamic traits of agricultural values. PMID:20196894

  10. Economic weights for performance and survival traits of growing pigs.

    PubMed

    Hermesch, S; Ludemann, C I; Amer, P R

    2014-12-01

    The objective of this paper was to derive economic weights for performance and survival traits of growing pigs including feed conversion ratio (FCR), daily feed intake (DFI), ADG, postweaning survival of the growing pig (SG), and carcass fat depth at the P2 site (CFD). An independent model was developed for each trait to derive economic values directly based on a typical Australian production system. This flexible approach may be used to customize economic values for different production systems and alternative trait combinations in breeding objectives. Discounted genetic expressions were used as a means of taking into account differences in frequency and timing of expression of traits to obtain economic weights. Economic values for SG were derived based on a cost-saving and a lost-revenue approach. The correct formulation of the economic value of ADG depends on how feed cost is included in the breeding objective. If FCR is defined as a breeding objective trait, then savings in feed costs through earlier slaughter should not be counted in the economic value of ADG. In contrast, if DFI is included in the breeding objective instead of FCR, then feed-cost savings through earlier slaughter need to be attributed to the economic value for ADG, as a benefit from faster ADG. The paper also demonstrates that economic weightings in indexes for FCR can potentially be overestimated by 70% when it is assumed that DFI or FCR records taken from a limited duration test period reflect the corresponding trait over the full lifetime of the growing pig destined for slaughter. Postweaning survival of the growing pig was the most important breeding objective trait of growing pigs. The relative importance of each breeding objective trait in a sire-line index based on the genetic SD of each trait was 44.5, 27.0, 17.4, and 11.1% for SG, FCR, ADG, and CFD, respectively. Further studies to better clarify the extent of genetic variation that exists in SG under nucleus-farm and commercial

  11. The short and the long of it: SD1 polymorphism and the evolution of growth trait divergence in U.S. weedy rice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growth related traits are thought to enhance competitiveness of agricultural weeds. U.S. weedy rice, a major conspecific weed of cultivated rice (Oryza sativa), displays variation for growth traits. Prior studies have shown that major U.S. weedy rice populations likely evolved from domesticated grou...

  12. Borderline personality traits and disorder: predicting prospective patient functioning

    PubMed Central

    Hopwood, Christopher J.; Zanarini, Mary C.

    2011-01-01

    Objective Decisions about the composition of personality assessment in DSM-V will be heavily influenced by the clinical utility of candidate constructs. This study addressed one aspect of clinical utility by testing the incremental validity of five-factor model personality traits and Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) symptoms for predicting prospective patient functioning. Method Five-factor personality traits and BPD features were correlated with one another and predicted 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10-year psychosocial functioning scores for 362 personality-disordered patients. Results Traits and symptom domains related significantly and pervasively to one another and to prospective functioning. FFM extraversion and agreeableness tended to be most incrementally predictive of psychosocial functioning across all intervals; cognitive and impulse action features of BPD features incremented FFM traits in some models. Conclusions These data suggest that BPD symptoms and personality traits are important long-term indicators of clinical functioning that both overlap with and increment one another in clinical predictions. Results support the integration of personality traits and disorders in DSM-V. PMID:20658814

  13. Complications associated with sickle cell trait: a brief narrative review.

    PubMed

    Tsaras, Geoffrey; Owusu-Ansah, Amma; Boateng, Freda Owusua; Amoateng-Adjepong, Yaw

    2009-06-01

    Sickle cell trait occurs in approximately 300 million people worldwide, with the highest prevalence of approximately 30% to 40% in sub-Saharan Africa. Long considered a benign carrier state with relative protection against severe malaria, sickle cell trait occasionally can be associated with significant morbidity and mortality. Sickle cell trait is exclusively associated with rare but often fatal renal medullary cancer. Current cumulative evidence is convincing for associations with hematuria, renal papillary necrosis, hyposthenuria, splenic infarction, exertional rhabdomyolysis, and exercise-related sudden death. Sickle cell trait is probably associated with complicated hyphema, venous thromboembolic events, fetal loss, neonatal deaths, and preeclampsia, and possibly associated with acute chest syndrome, asymptomatic bacteriuria, and anemia in pregnancy. There is insufficient evidence to suggest an independent association with retinopathy, cholelithiasis, priapism, leg ulcers, liver necrosis, avascular necrosis of the femoral head, and stroke. Despite these associations, the average life span of individuals with sickle cell trait is similar to that of the general population. Nonetheless, given the large number of people with sickle cell trait, it is important that physicians be aware of these associations. PMID:19393983

  14. Expanding Omics Resources for Improvement of Soybean Seed Composition Traits.

    PubMed

    Chaudhary, Juhi; Patil, Gunvant B; Sonah, Humira; Deshmukh, Rupesh K; Vuong, Tri D; Valliyodan, Babu; Nguyen, Henry T

    2015-01-01

    Food resources of the modern world are strained due to the increasing population. There is an urgent need for innovative methods and approaches to augment food production. Legume seeds are major resources of human food and animal feed with their unique nutrient compositions including oil, protein, carbohydrates, and other beneficial nutrients. Recent advances in next-generation sequencing (NGS) together with "omics" technologies have considerably strengthened soybean research. The availability of well annotated soybean genome sequence along with hundreds of identified quantitative trait loci (QTL) associated with different seed traits can be used for gene discovery and molecular marker development for breeding applications. Despite the remarkable progress in these technologies, the analysis and mining of existing seed genomics data are still challenging due to the complexity of genetic inheritance, metabolic partitioning, and developmental regulations. Integration of "omics tools" is an effective strategy to discover key regulators of various seed traits. In this review, recent advances in "omics" approaches and their use in soybean seed trait investigations are presented along with the available databases and technological platforms and their applicability in the improvement of soybean. This article also highlights the use of modern breeding approaches, such as genome-wide association studies (GWAS), genomic selection (GS), and marker-assisted recurrent selection (MARS) for developing superior cultivars. A catalog of available important resources for major seed composition traits, such as seed oil, protein, carbohydrates, and yield traits are provided to improve the knowledge base and future utilization of this information in the soybean crop improvement programs.

  15. Water Depletion Threatens Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brauman, K. A.; Richter, B. D.; Postel, S.; Floerke, M.; Malsy, M.

    2014-12-01

    Irrigated agriculture is the human activity that has by far the largest impact on water, constituting 85% of global water consumption and 67% of global water withdrawals. Much of this water use occurs in places where water depletion, the ratio of water consumption to water availability, exceeds 75% for at least one month of the year. Although only 17% of global watershed area experiences depletion at this level or more, nearly 30% of total cropland and 60% of irrigated cropland are found in these depleted watersheds. Staple crops are particularly at risk, with 75% of global irrigated wheat production and 65% of irrigated maize production found in watersheds that are at least seasonally depleted. Of importance to textile production, 75% of cotton production occurs in the same watersheds. For crop production in depleted watersheds, we find that one half to two-thirds of production occurs in watersheds that have not just seasonal but annual water shortages, suggesting that re-distributing water supply over the course of the year cannot be an effective solution to shortage. We explore the degree to which irrigated production in depleted watersheds reflects limitations in supply, a byproduct of the need for irrigation in perennially or seasonally dry landscapes, and identify heavy irrigation consumption that leads to watershed depletion in more humid climates. For watersheds that are not depleted, we evaluate the potential impact of an increase in irrigated production. Finally, we evaluate the benefits of irrigated agriculture in depleted and non-depleted watersheds, quantifying the fraction of irrigated production going to food production, animal feed, and biofuels.

  16. Life-history traits and landscape characteristics predict macro-moth responses to forest fragmentation.

    PubMed

    Slade, Eleanor M; Merckx, Thomas; Riutta, Terhi; Bebber, Daniel P; Redhead, David; Riordan, Philip; Macdonald, David W

    2013-07-01

    How best to manage forest patches, mitigate the consequences of forest fragmentation, and enable landscape permeability are key questions facing conservation scientists and managers. Many temperate forests have become increasingly fragmented, resulting in reduced interior forest habitat, increased edge habitats, and reduced connectivity. Using a citizen science landscape-scale mark-release-recapture study on 87 macro-moth species, we investigated how both life-history traits and landscape characteristics predicted macro-moth responses to forest fragmentation. Wingspan, wing shape, adult feeding, and larval feeding guild predicted macro-moth mobility, although the predictive power of wingspan and wing shape depended on the species' affinity to the forest. Solitary trees and small fragments functioned as "stepping stones," especially when their landscape connectivity was increased, by being positioned within hedgerows or within a favorable matrix. Mobile forest specialists were most affected by forest fragmentation: despite their high intrinsic dispersal capability, these species were confined mostly to the largest of the forest patches due to their strong affinity for the forest habitat, and were also heavily dependent on forest connectivity in order to cross the agricultural matrix. Forest fragments need to be larger than five hectares and to have interior forest more than 100 m from the edge in order to sustain populations of forest specialists. Our study provides new insights into the movement patterns of a functionally important insect group, with implications for the landscape-scale management of forest patches within agricultural landscapes.

  17. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

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  18. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS AND FEES General Provisions § 6.3 Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action...

  19. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS... Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action under section 22 should be submitted in duplicate to...

  20. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

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