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Sample records for higher plants linking

  1. Leaf Optical Properties in Higher Plants: Linking Spectral Characteristics with Plant Stress

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carter, Gregory A.; Knapp, Alan K.

    1999-01-01

    A number of studies have addressed responses of leaf spectral reflectance, transmittance, or absorptance to physiological stress. Stressors included dehydration, ozone, herbicides, disease, insufficient mycorrhizae and N fertilization, flooding and insects. Species included conifers, grasses, and broadleaved trees. Increased reflectance with maximum responses near 700 nm wavelength occurred in all cases. Varying the chlorophyll content in leaves or pigment extracts can simulate this effect. Thus, common optical responses to stress result from decreases in leaf chlorophyll contents or the capacity of chloroplasts to absorb light. Leaf optic can be quite sensitive to any stressor that alters soil-plant-atmosphere processes.

  2. The role of volatile metabolites in microbial communities of the lSS higher plant link

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tirranen, L. S.; Gitelson, I. I.

    The possibility of controlling the microbial community composition through metabolites produced by microbes has been considered. Basing on the comparative analysis of the experimental data we have revealed the greater contribution of volatile metabolites to microbial interaction than non-volatile. Investigations proved that the interaction between microorganisms through extracted volatile materials is a widespread phenomenon peculiar to many microorganisms. Most cultures inhibited each other's growth, in a number of cases displayed bactericidal action. Stimulatory action occurred 6 - 8 times rarely. The individuality of affect on studied test-cultures growth and the spectrum of microbial resistance to volatile metabolites have been revealed. Based on the comparative cluster analysis of these spectra from 100 studied cultures we have revealed that studied organisms produce a complex of volatile metabolites including 82 inhibiting and 52 stimulating. It was found that excretion of volatile metabolites of studied microorganisms depended upon the culture age, concentration of nutrient medium separate components and volatile by-products excreted by other microorganisms. The production can be increased or decreased by volatile by-products of other microbes. This is related to strain features and the culture age. The prospects of using these regulating metabolites can be defined by the "range", specificity and safety for other members of the microbial community in insufficient concentrations. Volatile metabolites of either plants and microorganisms or other system links - humans and technological equipment installed inside the closed ecosystem - can influence the formation of microbial communities, gas composition of the system atmosphere and state of the plants through the atmosphere. Special experiments showed that volatile microorganism metabolites could accumulate in the environment, dissolve in atmospheric water and maintain their biological activity for many days

  3. Leaf Optical Properties in Higher Plants: Linking Spectral Characteristics to Stress and Chlorophyll Concentration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carter, Gregory A.; Knapp, Alan K.

    2000-01-01

    A number of studies have linked responses in leaf spectral reflectance, transmittance or absorptance to physiological stress. A variety of stressors including dehydration, flooding,freezing, ozone, herbicides, competition, disease, insects and deficiencies in ectomycorrhizal development and N fertilization have been imposed on species ranging from grasses to conifers and deciduous trees. In this cases, the maximum difference in reflectance within the 400 - 850 nm wavelength range between control and stressed states occurred as a reflectance increase at wavelength near 700 nm. In studies that included transmittance and absorptance as well as reflectance, maximum differences occurred as increases and decreases, respectively, near 700 nm. This common optical response to stress could be simulated closely by varying the chlorophyll concentrations in senescent leaves of five species. The optical response to stress near 700 nm, as well as corresponding changes in reflectance that occur in the green-yellow spectrum, can be explained by the general tendency of stress to reduce leaf chlorophyll concentration.

  4. Chromosomal replicons of higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Van't Hof, J.

    1987-03-16

    This brief discussion of replicons of higher plants offers a glimpse into the properties of chromosomal DNA replication. It gives evidence that the S phase of unrelated plant species is comprised of temporally ordered replicon families that increase in number with genome size. This orderly process, which assures a normal inheritance of genetic material to recipient daughter cells, is maintained at the level of replicon clusters by two mutually exclusive mechanisms, one involving the rate at which single replicons replicate their allotment of DNA, and another by means of the tempo-pause. The same two mechanisms are used by cells to alter the pattern of chromosomal DNA replication just prior to and during normal development. Both mechanisms are genetically determined and produce genetic effects when disturbed of disrupted by additional non-conforming DNAs. Further insight into how these two mechanisms operate requires more molecular information about the nature of replicons and the factors that govern when a replicon family replicates. Plant material is a rich and ideal source for this information just awaiting exploitation. 63 refs.

  5. Somatic hybridization in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Constabel, F

    1976-11-01

    Somatic hybridization in higher plants has come into focus since methods have been established for protoplast fusion and uptake of foreign DNA and organelles by protoplasts. Polyethylene glycol (PEG) was an effective agent for inducing fusion. Treatment of protoplasts with PEG resulted in 5 to 30% heterospecific fusion products. Protoplasts of different species, genera and even families were compatible when fused. A number of protoplast combinations (soybean + corn, soybean + pea, soybean + tobacco, carrot + barley, etc.) provided fusion products which underwent cell division and callus formation. Fusion products initially were heterokaryocytes. In dividing heterokaryocytes, random distribution of mitotic nuclei was observed to be accompanied by multiple wall formation and to result in chimeral callus. Juxtaposition of mitotic nuclei suggested nuclear fusion and hybrid formation. Fusion of heterospecific interphase nuclei was demonstrated in soybean + pea and carrot + barley heterokaryons. Provided parental protoplasts carry suitable markers, the fusion products can be recognized. For the isolation and cloning of hybrid cells, fusion experiments must be supplemented with a selective system. Complementation of two non-allelic genes that prevent or inhibit growth under special culture conditions appears as the principle on which to base the selection of somatic hybrids. As protoplasts of some species have been induced to regenerate entire plants, the development of hybrid plants from protoplast fusion products is feasible and has already been demonstrated for tobacco.

  6. Gravitropism in Higher Plant Shoots

    PubMed Central

    Wheeler, Raymond M.; Salisbury, Frank B.

    1981-01-01

    It has long been known that applied ethylene can redirect the gravitropic response, but only occasionally has it been suggested that ethylene normally plays a role in gravitropism. Two inhibitors of ethylene synthesis [Co2+ and aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG)] and two inhibitors of ethylene action (Ag+ and CO2) were shown to delay the gravitropic response of cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium L.), tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.), and castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) stems. Gentle shaking on a mechanical shaker does not inhibit the gravitropic response, but vigorous hand shaking for 120 seconds delays the response somewhat. AVG and Ag+ further delay the response of mechanically stimulated plants. AVG delays the response of defoliated and of decapitated plants. Plants laid on their side and restricted so that they cannot bend upward store both bending energy and gravitropic stimulus; they bend immediately when released from restriction (stored energy) and continue to bend for some hours after (stored stimulus). AVG retards the storage of bending energy but not of stimulus. In gravitropism, graviperception may first stimulate ethylene evolution, which may then influence bending directly, or responses involving ethylene could be more indirect. PMID:16661736

  7. Silicon transporters in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Ma, Jian Feng

    2010-01-01

    Silicon (Si) is the second most abundant element in the Earth's crust and exerts beneficial effects on plant growth and production by alleviating both biotic and abiotic stresses including diseases, pests, lodging, drought and nutrient imbalance. Silicon is taken up by the roots in the form ofsilicic acid, a noncharged molecule. Recently both influx (Lsil) and efflux (Lsi2) transporters for silicic acid have been identified in gramineous plants including rice, barley and maize. Lsil and its homologs are influx Si transporters, which belong to a Nod26-like major intrinsic protein (NIP) subfamily in the aquaporin protein family. They are responsible for the transport of Si from the external solution to the root cells. On the other hand, Lsi2 and its homologs are efflux Si transporters, belonging to putative anion transporters and are responsible for the transport of Si out of the cells toward the xylem. All influx transporters show polar localization at the distal side. Among efflux transporters, Lsi2 in rice shows polar localization at the proximal side, but that in barley and maize does not show polar localization. The cell-specificity of localization of Si transporters and expression patterns are different between species. Rice Si transporters are also permeable to arsenite.

  8. Xenobiotic sensing and signalling in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Ramel, Fanny; Sulmon, Cécile; Serra, Anne-Antonella; Gouesbet, Gwenola; Couée, Ivan

    2012-06-01

    Anthropogenic changes and chemical pollution confront plant communities with various xenobiotic compounds or combinations of xenobiotics, involving chemical structures that are at least partially novel for plant species. Plant responses to chemical challenges and stimuli are usually characterized by the approaches of toxicology, ecotoxicology, and stress physiology. Development of transcriptomics and proteomics analysis has demonstrated the importance of modifications to gene expression in plant responses to xenobiotics. It has emerged that xenobiotic effects could involve not only biochemical and physiological disruption, but also the disruption of signalling pathways. Moreover, mutations affecting sensing and signalling pathways result in modifications of responses to xenobiotics, thus confirming interference or crosstalk between xenobiotic effects and signalling pathways. Some of these changes at gene expression, regulation and signalling levels suggest various mechanisms of xenobiotic sensing in higher plants, in accordance with xenobiotic-sensing mechanisms that have been characterized in other phyla (yeast, invertebrates, vertebrates). In higher plants, such sensing systems are difficult to identify, even though different lines of evidence, involving mutant studies, transcription factor analysis, or comparative studies, point to their existence. It remains difficult to distinguish between the hypothesis of direct xenobiotic sensing and indirect sensing of xenobiotic-related modifications. However, future characterization of xenobiotic sensing and signalling in higher plants is likely to be a key element for determining the tolerance and remediation capacities of plant species. This characterization will also be of interest for understanding evolutionary dynamics of stress adaptation and mechanisms of adaptation to novel stressors.

  9. The Interactions of Aquaporins and Mineral Nutrients in Higher Plants.

    PubMed

    Wang, Min; Ding, Lei; Gao, Limin; Li, Yingrui; Shen, Qirong; Guo, Shiwei

    2016-07-29

    Aquaporins, major intrinsic proteins (MIPs) present in the plasma and intracellular membranes, facilitate the transport of small neutral molecules across cell membranes in higher plants. Recently, progress has been made in understanding the mechanisms of aquaporin subcellular localization, transport selectivity, and gating properties. Although the role of aquaporins in maintaining the plant water status has been addressed, the interactions between plant aquaporins and mineral nutrients remain largely unknown. This review highlights the roles of various aquaporin orthologues in mineral nutrient uptake and transport, as well as the regulatory effects of mineral nutrients on aquaporin expression and activity, and an integrated link between aquaporins and mineral nutrient metabolism was identified.

  10. The Interactions of Aquaporins and Mineral Nutrients in Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Min; Ding, Lei; Gao, Limin; Li, Yingrui; Shen, Qirong; Guo, Shiwei

    2016-01-01

    Aquaporins, major intrinsic proteins (MIPs) present in the plasma and intracellular membranes, facilitate the transport of small neutral molecules across cell membranes in higher plants. Recently, progress has been made in understanding the mechanisms of aquaporin subcellular localization, transport selectivity, and gating properties. Although the role of aquaporins in maintaining the plant water status has been addressed, the interactions between plant aquaporins and mineral nutrients remain largely unknown. This review highlights the roles of various aquaporin orthologues in mineral nutrient uptake and transport, as well as the regulatory effects of mineral nutrients on aquaporin expression and activity, and an integrated link between aquaporins and mineral nutrient metabolism was identified. PMID:27483251

  11. Is Multilingualism Linked to a Higher Tolerance of Ambiguity?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeWaele, Jean-Marc; Wei, Li

    2013-01-01

    The present study investigates the link between multilingualism and the personality trait Tolerance of Ambiguity (TA) among 2158 mono-, bi- and multilinguals. Monolinguals and bilinguals scored significantly lower on TA compared to multilinguals. A high level of global proficiency of various languages was linked to higher TA scores. A stay abroad…

  12. Migraine Linked to Higher Stroke Risk After Surgery

    MedlinePlus

    ... https://medlineplus.gov/news/fullstory_162999.html Migraine Linked to Higher Stroke Risk After Surgery The risk ... said. For the study, Eikermann and colleagues collected data on nearly 125,000 surgical patients at Massachusetts ...

  13. The circadian system in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Harmer, Stacey L

    2009-01-01

    The circadian clock regulates diverse aspects of plant growth and development and promotes plant fitness. Molecular identification of clock components, primarily in Arabidopsis, has led to recent rapid progress in our understanding of the clock mechanism in higher plants. Using mathematical modeling and experimental approaches, workers in the field have developed a model of the clock that incorporates both transcriptional and posttranscriptional regulation of clock genes. This cell-autonomous clock, or oscillator, generates rhythmic outputs that can be monitored at the cellular and whole-organism level. The clock not only confers daily rhythms in growth and metabolism, but also interacts with signaling pathways involved in plant responses to the environment. Future work will lead to a better understanding of how the clock and other signaling networks are integrated to provide plants with an adaptive advantage.

  14. Higher Education and International Capacity Building: Twenty Five Years of Higher Education Links

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stephens, David, Ed.

    2009-01-01

    For the past 25 years UK Higher Education institutions have forged research and teaching partnerships with their counterparts overseas. Many of these links were funded by the British Government and managed by the British Council's Higher Education Links Scheme. This book takes an informed and critical look at issues and trends in global higher…

  15. Regulation of cell division in higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Jacobs, T.W.

    1992-01-01

    Cell division is arguably the most fundamental of all developmental processes. In higher plants, mitotic activity is largely confined to foci of patterned cell divisions called meristems. From these perpetually embryonic tissues arise the plant's essential organs of light capture, support, protection and reproduction. Once an adequate understanding of plant cell mitotic regulation is attained, unprecedented opportunities will ensue for analyzing and genetically controlling diverse aspects of development, including plant architecture, leaf shape, plant height, and root depth. The mitotic cycle in a variety of model eukaryotic systems in under the control of a regulatory network of striking evolutionary conservation. Homologues of the yeast cdc2 gene, its catalytic product, p34, and the cyclin regulatory subunits of the MPF complex have emerged as ubiquitous mitotic regulators. We have cloned cdc2-like and cyclin genes from pea. As in other eukaryotic model systems, p34 of Pisum sativum is a subunit of a high molecular weight complex which binds the fission yeast p13 protein and displays histone H1 kinase activity in vitro. Our primary objective in this study is to gain baseline information about the regulation of this higher plant cell division control complex in non-dividing, differentiated cells as well as in synchronous and asynchronous mitotic cells. We are investigating cdc2 and cyclin expression at the levels of protein abundance, protein phosphorylation and quaternary associations.

  16. Singlet oxygen signaling links photosynthesis to translation and plant growth.

    PubMed

    Reinbothe, Christiane; Pollmann, Stephan; Reinbothe, Steffen

    2010-09-01

    Translation is a major target of metabolic and growth control in animals and plants. Changes in the phosphorylation status of ribosomal protein S6 are responsible for rapid adjustments in the growth pattern of higher plants in response to changes in the environment. In this review, we illuminate some common and unique aspects of translational control in animals and plants and discuss recent studies that link photosynthesis to growth via specific signal transduction cascades, one of which relies on singlet oxygen and the plant growth regulator jasmonic acid (JA). It is the aim of this review to discuss the role of the target of rapamycin (TOR) signaling network in plants and what mechanisms could contribute to growth control in response to the changing environment.

  17. Nickel: a micronutrient essential for higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, P.H.; Welch, R.M.; Cary, E.E.

    1987-11-01

    Nickel was established as an essential micronutrient for the growth of temperate cereal crops. Grain from barley (Hordeum vulgare L. cv Onda; containing 40 to 80 nanograms of Ni per gram dry weight) grown in solution culture with negligible Ni concentrations (<30 nanograms of Ni per liter) exhibited greatly reduced germination rates (i.e. 50% less than grain from Ni-adequate plants) and seeding vigor of the viable grain was greatly depressed. Grain containing less than 30 nanograms per gram dry weight was inviable. Under Ni-deficient conditions, barley plants fail to produce viable grain because of a disruption of the maternal plants normal grain-filling and maturation processes that occur following formation of the grain embryo. The observations that (a) barley plants fail to complete their life cycle in the absence of Ni and (b) addition of Ni to the growth medium completely alleviates deficiency symptoms in the maternal plants satisfies the essentiality criteria; thus Ni should be considered a micronutrient for cereals. Because Ni is required by legumes, and is now established for cereals, the authors conclude that Ni should be added to the list of micronutrients essential for all higher plant growth.

  18. Phenol biosynthesis in higher plants. Gallic acid

    PubMed Central

    Dewick, P. M.; Haslam, E.

    1969-01-01

    The biosynthesis of gallic acid in a number of higher plants was investigated by using l-[U-14C]phenylalanine, (−)-[G-14C]shikimic acid, d-[1-14C]glucose and d-[6-14C]glucose as tracers. The results are compared with those obtained similarly for caffeic acid and are interpreted in terms of the dehydrogenation of 5-dehydroshikimic acid as a normal route of metabolism for gallic acid. PMID:5807212

  19. Ending Remediation: Linking ESL and Content in Higher Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Benesch, Sarah, Ed.

    A collection of essays on the integration of English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) and content area instruction in higher education includes: "Using Feedback from ESL Students To Enhance Their Success in College" (Trudy Smoke); "When There Are No Links Between ESL and Content Courses" (Elaine Brooks); "The Adjunct Model of…

  20. Nickel: an essential element for higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Brown, P.H.

    1988-01-01

    The inability of cereal crops to complete their life cycle in the absence of Ni demonstrates that Ni is an essential micronutrient for the growth of higher plants. The growth of barley (Hordeum vulgare L., cv. Onda), wheat (Triticum aestivum L., cv. Era), and oats (Avena sativa L., cv. Astro) is depressed under Ni deficient conditions, and grain of severely Ni deficient barley was inviable. Evidence suggests that Ni is essential to the formation of the grain embryo and in the remobilization of N from the leaves to the grain during plant maturation. Nickel deficiency produces characteristic deficiency symptoms in cereals including, leaf chlorosis, premature senescence in oats, and the development of interveinal necrosis. Metabolic effects of Ni deficiency are extensive and cannot be alleviated by the addition of any other essential element.

  1. Linking plant and ecosystem functional biogeography

    PubMed Central

    Reichstein, Markus; Bahn, Michael; Mahecha, Miguel D.; Kattge, Jens; Baldocchi, Dennis D.

    2014-01-01

    Classical biogeographical observations suggest that ecosystems are strongly shaped by climatic constraints in terms of their structure and function. On the other hand, vegetation function feeds back on the climate system via biosphere–atmosphere exchange of matter and energy. Ecosystem-level observations of this exchange reveal very large functional biogeographical variation of climate-relevant ecosystem functional properties related to carbon and water cycles. This variation is explained insufficiently by climate control and a classical plant functional type classification approach. For example, correlations between seasonal carbon-use efficiency and climate or environmental variables remain below 0.6, leaving almost 70% of variance unexplained. We suggest that a substantial part of this unexplained variation of ecosystem functional properties is related to variations in plant and microbial traits. Therefore, to progress with global functional biogeography, we should seek to understand the link between organismic traits and flux-derived ecosystem properties at ecosystem observation sites and the spatial variation of vegetation traits given geoecological covariates. This understanding can be fostered by synergistic use of both data-driven and theory-driven ecological as well as biophysical approaches. PMID:25225392

  2. Effect of free fall on higher plants.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gordon, S. A.

    1973-01-01

    The influence of exposure to the free-fall state on the orientation, morphogenesis, physiology, and radiation response of higher plants is briefly summarized. It is proposed that the duration of the space-flight experiments has been to brief to permit meaningful effects of free fall on general biochemistry, growth, and development to appear. However, two types of significant effect did occur. The first is on differential growth - i.e., tropism and epinasty - resulting from the absence of a normal geostimulus. For these phenomena it is suggested that ground-based experiments with the clinostat would suffice to mimic the effect of the free-fall state. The second is an apparent interaction between the radiation response and some flight condition, yielding an enhanced microspore abortion, a disturbed spindle function, and a stunting of stamen hairs. It is suggested that this apparent interaction may be derived from a shift in the rhythm of the cell cycle, induced by the free fall.

  3. Iron Isotope Fractionation in Higher Plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guelke, M.; von Blanckenburg, F.; Schoenberg, R.; Staubwasser, M.

    2006-12-01

    To maintain an optimal iron supply plants have adopted two different strategies for uptake of iron from soil [1]. Stable iron isotope compositions reflect these uptake strategies. These phenomena can be studied since MC- ICP-MS now routinely allows the resolution of small mass-dependent natural shifts in the relative abundances of the stable Fe isotopes to a precision of 0.05 per mil. In nature a range of about 4.5 per mil has been found for the fractionation between 56Fe and ^{54}Fe. We have measured various parts of different plant types and extracted the plant-available soil Fe with leaching techniques. The 56Fe/^{54}Fe ratio of soils is fractionated by -0.1 per mil relative to the international IRMM14 standard. Strategy I plants (dicots and non- grass monocots) are depleted by up to 1.6 per mil in the 56Fe/^{54}Fe ratio relative to the iron that is available to plants in soil. Isotope fractionation factors predict the depletion of heavy isotopes in the ferrous reservoir during reduction [2];the roots of strategy I plants reduce ferric iron to facilitate uptake. In contrast we found that 56Fe/^{54}Fe of strategy II plants (grasses) is 0.2 per mil heavier than that in soils. Strategy II plants mobilize ferric iron by complexation with siderophores. Indeed a minor enrichment of heavy isotopes is predicted for this process [3]. We also disclosed an evolution of iron towards light compositions during growth, but only in strategy I plants ; this points at entirely different translocation mechanisms between strategy I and II plants, where redox shifts are involved in Fe translocation in strategy I plants while all Fe remains in the ferric state in strategy II plants. We conclude that Fe isotopes serve to characterize (a) the Fe uptake pathways utilized by plants; (b) the Fe translocation mechanisms within plants; (c) the isotope composition of plant- available Fe by measurement of the 56Fe/^{54}Fe ratio of strategy II plants. [1] Roemheld, V. & Marschner, H. (1986

  4. Developing Higher Plant Systems in Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krikorian, A. D.

    1983-01-01

    The effects of hypogravity and microgravity environments on plant cells are discussed. Experiments on embryos of carrots are discussed. Simulation and spacecraft environments were used in experiments.

  5. Chemical antipredator defence is linked to higher extinction risk

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Many attributes of species may be linked to contemporary extinction risk, though some such traits remain untested despite suggestions that they may be important. Here, I test whether a trait associated with higher background extinction rates, chemical antipredator defence, is also associated with current extinction risk, using amphibians as a model system—a group facing global population declines. I find that chemically defended species are approximately 60% more likely to be threatened than species without chemical defence, although the severity of the contemporary extinction risk may not relate to chemical defence. The results confirm that background and contemporary extinction rates can be predicted from the same traits, at least in certain cases. This suggests that associations between extinction risk and phenotypic traits can be temporally stable over long periods. The results also provide novel insights into the relevance of antipredator defences for species subject to conservation concerns. PMID:28018657

  6. Experimental determination of magnesium isotope fractionation during higher plant growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolou-Bi, Emile B.; Poszwa, Anne; Leyval, Corinne; Vigier, Nathalie

    2010-05-01

    Two higher plant species (rye grass and clover) were cultivated under laboratory conditions on two substrates (solution, phlogopite) in order to constrain the corresponding Mg isotope fractionations during plant growth and Mg uptake. We show that bulk plants are systematically enriched in heavy isotopes relative to their nutrient source. The Δ 26Mg plant-source range from 0.72‰ to 0.26‰ for rye grass and from 1.05‰ to 0.41‰ for clover. Plants grown on phlogopite display Mg isotope signatures (relative to the Mg source) ˜0.3‰ lower than hydroponic plants. For a given substrate, rye grass display lower δ 26Mg (by ˜0.3‰) relative to clover. Magnesium desorbed from rye grass roots display a δ 26Mg greater than the nutrient solution. Adsorption experiments on dead and living rye grass roots also indicate a significant enrichment in heavy isotopes of the Mg adsorbed on the root surface. Our results indicate that the key processes responsible for heavy isotope enrichment in plants are located at the root level. Both species also exhibit an enrichment in light isotopes from roots to shoots (Δ 26Mg leaf-root = -0.65‰ and -0.34‰ for rye grass and clover grown on phlogopite respectively, and Δ 26Mg leaf-root of -0.06‰ and -0.22‰ for the same species grown hydroponically). This heavy isotope depletion in leaves can be explained by biological processes that affect leaves and roots differently: (1) organo-Mg complex (including chlorophyll) formation, and (2) Mg transport within plant. For both species, a positive correlation between δ 26Mg and K/Mg was observed among the various organs. This correlation is consistent with the link between K and Mg internal cycles, as well as with formation of organo-magnesium compounds associated with enrichment in heavy isotopes. Considering our results together with the published range for δ 26Mg of natural plants and rivers, we estimate that a significant change in continental vegetation would induce a change of

  7. Isotopic discrimination of zinc in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Weiss, D J; Mason, T F D; Zhao, F J; Kirk, G J D; Coles, B J; Horstwood, M S A

    2005-03-01

    * The extent of isotopic discrimination of transition metals in biological processes is poorly understood but potentially has important applications in plant and biogeochemical studies. * Using multicollector inductively coupled plasma (ICP) mass spectrometry, we measured isotopic fractionation of zinc (Zn) during uptake from nutrient solutions by rice (Oryza sativa), lettuce (Lactuca sativa) and tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) plants. * For all three species, the roots showed a similar extent of heavy Zn enrichment relative to the nutrient solution, probably reflecting preferential adsorption on external root surfaces. By contrast, a plant-species specific enrichment of the light Zn isotope occurred in the shoots, indicative of a biological, membrane-transport controlled uptake into plant cells. The extent of the fractionation in the shoots further depended on the Zn speciation in the nutrient solution. * The observed isotopic depletion in heavy Zn from root to shoot (-0.13 to -0.26 per atomic mass unit) is equivalent to roughly a quarter of the total reported terrestrial variability of Zn isotopic compositions (c. 0.84 per atomic mass unit). Plant uptake therefore represents an important source of isotopic variation in biogeochemical cycling of Zn.

  8. The cytoskeleton and gravitropism in higher plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blancaflor, Elison B.

    2002-01-01

    The cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the gravitropic response of plants have continued to elude plant biologists despite more than a century of research. Lately there has been increased attention on the role of the cytoskeleton in plant gravitropism, but several controversies and major gaps in our understanding of cytoskeletal involvement in gravitropism remain. A major question in the study of plant gravitropism is how the cytoskeleton mediates early sensing and signal transduction events in plants. Much has been made of the actin cytoskeleton as the cellular structure that sedimenting amyloplasts impinge upon to trigger the downstream signaling events leading to the bending response. There is also strong molecular and biochemical evidence that the transport of auxin, an important player in gravitropism, is regulated by actin. Organizational changes in microtubules during the growth response phase of gravitropism have also been well documented, but the significance of such reorientations in controlling differential cellular growth is unclear. Studies employing pharmacological approaches to dissect cytoskeletal involvement in gravitropism have led to conflicting results and therefore need to be interpreted with caution. Despite the current controversies, the revolutionary advances in molecular, biochemical, and cell biological techniques have opened up several possibilities for further research into this difficult area. The myriad proteins associated with the plant cytoskeleton that are being rapidly characterized provide a rich assortment of candidate regulators that could be targets of the gravity signal transduction chain. Cytoskeletal and ion imaging in real time combined with mutant analysis promises to provide a fresh start into this controversial area of research.

  9. Higher plant mitochondrial DNA: Genomes, genes, mutants, transcription, translation

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-01-01

    This volume contains brief summaries of 63 presentations given at the International Workshop on Higher Plant Mitochondrial DNA. The presentations are organized into topical discussions addressing plant genomes, mitochondrial genes, cytoplasmic male sterility, transcription, translation, plasmids and tissue culture. (DT)

  10. Linking Plant Nutritional Status to Plant-Microbe Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Carvalhais, Lilia C.; Dennis, Paul G.; Fan, Ben; Fedoseyenko, Dmitri; Kierul, Kinga; Becker, Anke; von Wiren, Nicolaus; Borriss, Rainer

    2013-01-01

    Plants have developed a wide-range of adaptations to overcome nutrient limitation, including changes to the quantity and composition of carbon-containing compounds released by roots. Root-associated bacteria are largely influenced by these compounds which can be perceived as signals or substrates. Here, we evaluate the effect of root exudates collected from maize plants grown under nitrogen (N), phosphate (P), iron (Fe) and potassium (K) deficiencies on the transcriptome of the plant growth promoting rhizobacterium (PGPR) Bacillus amyloliquefaciens FZB42. The largest shifts in gene expression patterns were observed in cells exposed to exudates from N-, followed by P-deficient plants. Exudates from N-deprived maize triggered a general stress response in FZB42 in the exponential growth phase, which was evidenced by the suppression of numerous genes involved in protein synthesis. Exudates from P-deficient plants induced bacterial genes involved in chemotaxis and motility whilst exudates released by Fe and K deficient plants did not cause dramatic changes in the bacterial transcriptome during exponential growth phase. Global transcriptional changes in bacteria elicited by nutrient deficient maize exudates were significantly correlated with concentrations of the amino acids aspartate, valine and glutamate in root exudates suggesting that transcriptional profiling of FZB42 associated with metabolomics of N, P, Fe and K-deficient maize root exudates is a powerful approach to better understand plant-microbe interactions under conditions of nutritional stress. PMID:23874669

  11. The outer mitochondrial membrane in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Owen; van der Merwe, Margaretha J; Daley, Daniel O; Whelan, James

    2013-04-01

    The acquisition and integration of intracellular organelles, such as mitochondria and plastids, were important steps in the emergence of complex multicellular life. Although the outer membranes of these organelles have lost many of the functions of their free-living bacterial ancestor, others were acquired during organellogenesis. To date, the biological roles of these proteins have not been systematically characterized. In this review, we discuss the evolutionary origins and functions of outer membrane mitochondrial (OMM) proteins in Arabidopsis thaliana. Our analysis, using phylogenetic inference, indicates that several OMM proteins either acquired novel functional roles or were recruited from other subcellular localizations during evolution in Arabidopsis. These observations suggest the existence of novel communication routes and functions between organelles within plant cells.

  12. Controlled Ecological Life Support System: Use of Higher Plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tibbits, T. W.; Alford, D. K.

    1982-01-01

    Results of two workshops concerning the use of higher plants in Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems (CELSS) are summarized. Criteria for plant selection were identified from these categories: food production, nutrition, oxygen production and carbon dioxide utilization, water recycling, waste recycling, and other morphological and physiological considerations. Types of plant species suitable for use in CELSS, growing procedures, and research priorities were recommended. Also included are productivity values for selected plant species.

  13. Higher plant diversity promotes higher diversity of fungal pathogens, while it decreases pathogen infection per plant.

    PubMed

    Rottstock, Tanja; Joshi, Jasmin; Kummer, Volker; Fischer, Markus

    2014-07-01

    Fungal plant pathogens are common in natural communities where they affect plant physiology, plant survival, and biomass production. Conversely, pathogen transmission and infection may be regulated by plant community characteristics such as plant species diversity and functional composition that favor pathogen diversity through increases in host diversity while simultaneously reducing pathogen infection via increased variability in host density and spatial heterogeneity. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of multi-host multi-pathogen interactions is of high significance in the context of biodiversity-ecosystem functioning. We investigated the relationship between plant diversity and aboveground obligate parasitic fungal pathogen ("pathogens" hereafter) diversity and infection in grasslands of a long-term, large-scale, biodiversity experiment with varying plant species (1-60 species) and plant functional group diversity (1-4 groups). To estimate pathogen infection of the plant communities, we visually assessed pathogen-group presence (i.e., rusts, powdery mildews, downy mildews, smuts, and leaf-spot diseases) and overall infection levels (combining incidence and severity of each pathogen group) in 82 experimental plots on all aboveground organs of all plant species per plot during four surveys in 2006. Pathogen diversity, assessed as the cumulative number of pathogen groups on all plant species per plot, increased log-linearly with plant species diversity. However, pathogen incidence and severity, and hence overall infection, decreased with increasing plant species diversity. In addition, co-infection of plant individuals by two or more pathogen groups was less likely with increasing plant community diversity. We conclude that plant community diversity promotes pathogen-community diversity while at the same time reducing pathogen infection levels of plant individuals.

  14. Hormonal control of transcription in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Teissere, M; Penon, P; van Huystee, R B; Azou, Y; Ricard, J

    1975-09-01

    1. Nucleolar RNA polymerase Ib obtained from auxin-treated lentil roots exhibits a higher transcriptional activity than the enzyme obtained from control roots. This difference is due to a change in the enzyme properties after auxin treatment. It is suggested that the hormonal effect is mediated by a factor that changes the molecular properties of nucleolar RNA polymerase. 2. Four fractions, alpha, beta, gamma and delta, that stimulate the activity of RNA polymerase Ib, have been extracted from lentil roots. Two of them, gamma and delta have been studied. Factor delta can stimulate nucleolar polymerase Ib and the nucleoplasmic enzyme II equally well, while factor gamma is specific for polymerase Ib. 3. The curve of UMP incorporation in vitro, with and without factors gamma or delta suggests that they are initiation factors. This conclusion is reinforced by the analysis of simultaneous incorporation of [gamma-32P]ATP and [3H]UMP in the RNAs synthesized in vitro. 4. Although the level of factor delta is independent of auxin treatment, that of factor gamma is doubled in auxin-treated roots. These results suggest that factor gamma is an auxin-induced protein that modulates the specific activity of the nucleolar RNA polymerase. 5. A general model of the mode of action of auxins at the molecular level is proposed. It integrates into a unified scheme the above results as well as those obtained by other workers.

  15. Biophysical characterization of higher plant Rubisco activase.

    PubMed

    Henderson, J Nathan; Hazra, Suratna; Dunkle, Alison M; Salvucci, Michael E; Wachter, Rebekka M

    2013-01-01

    Rubisco activase (Rca) is a chaperone-like protein of the AAA+ family, which uses mechano-chemical energy derived from ATP hydrolysis to release tightly bound inhibitors from the active site of the primary carbon fixing enzyme ribulose 1,5-bisphosphate oxygenase/carboxylase (Rubisco). Mechanistic and structural investigations of Rca have been hampered by its exceptional thermolability, high degree of size polydispersity and propensity towards subunit aggregation. In this work, we have characterized the thermal stability and self-association behavior of recombinant Rca preparations, and have developed ligand screening methods. Thermal denaturation profiles generated by circular dichroism indicate that creosote and tobacco short-form Rcas are the most stable proteins examined, with an estimated mid-point temperature of 45-47°C for protein denaturation. We demonstrate that ADP provides a higher degree of stabilization than ATP, that magnesium ions have a small stabilizing effect on ATP-bound, but a significant destabilizing effect on ADP-bound Rca, and that phosphate provides weak stabilization of the ADP-bound form of the protein. A dimeric species was identified by size-exclusion chromatography, suggesting that the two-subunit module may comprise the basic building block for larger assemblies. Evidence is provided that chromatographic procedures reflect non-equilibrium multimeric states. Dynamic light scattering experiments performed on nucleotide-bearing Rca support the notion that several larger, highly polydisperse assembly states coexist over a broad concentration range. No significant changes in aggregation are observed upon replacement of ADP with ATP. However, in the absence of nucleotides, the major protein population appears to consist of a monodisperse oligomer smaller than a hexamer.

  16. Effect of iodine disinfection products on higher plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Janik, D.; Macler, B.; Macelroy, R. D.; Thorstenson, Y.; Sauer, R.

    1989-01-01

    Iodine is used to disinfect potable water on United States spacecraft. Iodinated potable water will likely be used to grow plants in space. Little is known about the effects of iodine disinfection products on plants. Seeds of select higher plants were germinated in water iodinated using the Shuttle Microbial Check Valve, and water to which measured amounts of iodine was added. Percent germination was decreased in seeds of most species germinated in iodinated water. Beans were most affected. Germination rates, determined from germination half-times, were decreased for beans germinated in iodinated water, and water to which iodide was added. Development was retarded and rootlets were conspicuously absent in bean and several other plant species germinated in iodinated water. Iodide alone did not elicit these responses. Clearly iodine disinfection products can affect higher plants. These effects must be carefully considered for plant experimentation and cultivation in space, and in design and testing of closed environmental life support systems.

  17. Controlled ecological life support system higher plant flight experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tibbitts, T. W.; Wheeler, R. M.

    1984-01-01

    Requirements for spaceflight experments which involve higher plants were determined. The plants are studied for use in controlled ecological life support systems (CELSS). Two categories of research requirements are discussed: (1) the physical needs which include nutrient, water and gas exchange requirements; (2) the biological and physiological functions which affect plants in zero gravity environments. Physical problems studies are given the priority since they affect all biological experiments.

  18. Design of components for growing higher plants in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1988-01-01

    The overall goal of this project is to design unique systems and components for growing higher plants in microgravity during long-term space missions (Mars and beyond). Specific design tasks were chosen to contribute to and supplement NASA's Controlled Ecological Life Support System (CELSS) project. Selected tasks were automated seeding of plants, plant health sensing, and food processing. Prototype systems for planting both germinated and nongerminated seeds were fabricated and tested. Water and air pressure differences and electrostatic fields were used to trap seeds for separation and transport for planting. An absorption spectrometer was developed to measure chlorophyll levels in plants as an early warning of plant health problems. In the area of food processing, a milling system was created using high-speed rotating blades which were aerodynamically configured to produce circulation and retractable to prevent leakage. The project produced significant results having substantial benefit to NASA. It also provided an outstanding learning experience for the students involved.

  19. Selenium in higher plants: understanding mechanisms for biofortification and phytoremediation.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Yong-Guan; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H; Zhao, Fang-Jie; Williams, Paul N; Meharg, Andrew A

    2009-08-01

    Selenium (Se) is an essential micronutrient for many organisms, including plants, animals and humans. As plants are the main source of dietary Se, plant Se metabolism is therefore important for Se nutrition of humans and other animals. However, the concentration of Se in plant foods varies between areas, and too much Se can lead to toxicity. As we discuss here, plant Se uptake and metabolism can be exploited for the purposes of developing high-Se crop cultivars and for plant-mediated removal of excess Se from soil or water. Here, we review key developments in the current understanding of Se in higher plants. We also discuss recent advances in the genetic engineering of Se metabolism, particularly for biofortification and phytoremediation of Se-contaminated environments.

  20. DNA methylation in higher plants: past, present and future.

    PubMed

    Vanyushin, Boris F; Ashapkin, Vasili V

    2011-08-01

    A relatively high degree of nuclear DNA (nDNA) methylation is a specific feature of plant genomes. Targets for cytosine DNA methylation in plant genomes are CG, CHG and CHH (H is A, T, C) sequences. More than 30% total m(5)C in plant DNA is located in non-CG sites. DNA methylation in plants is species-, tissue-, organelle- and age-specific; it is involved in the control of all genetic functions including transcription, replication, DNA repair, gene transposition and cell differentiation. DNA methylation is engaged in gene silencing and parental imprinting, it controls expression of transgenes and foreign DNA in cell. Plants have much more complicated and sophisticated system of the multicomponent genome methylations compared to animals; DNA methylation in plant mitochondria is performed in other fashion as compared to that in nuclei. The nDNA methylation is carried out by cytosine DNA methyltransferases of, at least, three families. In contrast to animals the plants with the major maintenance methyltransferase MET1 (similar to animal Dnmt1) inactivated do survive. One and the same plant gene may be methylated at both adenine and cytosine residues; specific plant adenine DNA methyltransferase was described. Thus, two different systems of the genome modification based on methylation of cytosines and adenines seem to coexist in higher plants. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Epigenetic control of cellular and developmental processes in plants.

  1. Discovery of new anticancer agents from higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Li; Chai, Hee-Byung; Kinghorn, A. Douglas

    2012-01-01

    1. ABSTRACT Small organic molecules derived from higher plants have been one of the mainstays of cancer chemotherapy for approximately the past half a century. In the present review, selected single chemical entity natural products of plant origin and their semi-synthetic derivatives currently in clinical trials are featured as examples of new cancer chemotherapeutic drug candidates. Several more recently isolated compounds obtained from plants showing promising in vivo biological activity are also discussed in terms of their potential as anticancer agents, with many of these obtained from species that grow in tropical regions. Since extracts of only a relatively small proportion of the ca. 300,000 higher plants on earth have been screened biologically to date, bioactive compounds from plants should play an important role in future anticancer drug discovery efforts. PMID:22202049

  2. Properties of shaker-type potassium channels in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Gambale, F; Uozumi, N

    2006-03-01

    Potassium (K(+)), the most abundant cation in biological organisms, plays a crucial role in the survival and development of plant cells, modulation of basic mechanisms such as enzyme activity, electrical membrane potentials, plant turgor and cellular homeostasis. Due to the absence of a Na(+)/K(+) exchanger, which widely exists in animal cells, K(+) channels and some type of K(+) transporters function as K(+) uptake systems in plants. Plant voltage-dependent K(+) channels, which display striking topological and functional similarities with the voltage-dependent six-transmembrane segment animal Shaker-type K(+) channels, have been found to play an important role in the plasma membrane of a variety of tissues and organs in higher plants. Outward-rectifying, inward-rectifying and weakly-rectifying K(+) channels have been identified and play a crucial role in K(+) homeostasis in plant cells. To adapt to the environmental conditions, plants must take advantage of the large variety of Shaker-type K(+) channels naturally present in the plant kingdom. This review summarizes the extensive data on the structure, function, membrane topogenesis, heteromerization, expression, localization, physiological roles and modulation of Shaker-type K(+) channels from various plant species. The accumulated results also help in understanding the similarities and differences in the properties of Shaker-type K(+) channels in plants in comparison to those of Shaker channels in animals and bacteria.

  3. Higher-order web link analysis using multilinear algebra.

    SciTech Connect

    Kenny, Joseph P.; Bader, Brett William; Kolda, Tamara Gibson

    2005-07-01

    Linear algebra is a powerful and proven tool in web search. Techniques, such as the PageRank algorithm of Brin and Page and the HITS algorithm of Kleinberg, score web pages based on the principal eigenvector (or singular vector) of a particular non-negative matrix that captures the hyperlink structure of the web graph. We propose and test a new methodology that uses multilinear algebra to elicit more information from a higher-order representation of the hyperlink graph. We start by labeling the edges in our graph with the anchor text of the hyperlinks so that the associated linear algebra representation is a sparse, three-way tensor. The first two dimensions of the tensor represent the web pages while the third dimension adds the anchor text. We then use the rank-1 factors of a multilinear PARAFAC tensor decomposition, which are akin to singular vectors of the SVD, to automatically identify topics in the collection along with the associated authoritative web pages.

  4. Heat tolerance of higher plants cenosis to damaging air temperatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ushakova, Sofya; Shklavtsova, Ekaterina

    Designing sustained biological-technical life support systems (BTLSS) including higher plants as a part of a photosynthesizing unit, it is important to foresee the multi species cenosis reaction on either stress-factors. Air temperature changing in BTLSS (because of failure of a thermoregulation system) up to the values leading to irreversible damages of photosynthetic processes is one of those factors. However, it is possible to increase, within the certain limits, the plant cenosis tolerance to the unfavorable temperatures’ effect due to the choice of the higher plants possessing resistance both to elevated and to lowered air temperatures. Besides, the plants heat tolerance can be increased when subjecting them during their growing to the hardening off temperatures’ effect. Thus, we have come to the conclusion that it is possible to increase heat tolerance of multi species cenosis under the damaging effect of air temperature of 45 (°) СC.

  5. Higher Plants in Space: Microgravity Perception, Response, and Adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Hui Qiong; Han, Fei; Le, Jie

    2015-11-01

    Microgravity is a major abiotic stress in space. Its effects on plants may depend on the duration of exposure. We focused on two different phases of microgravity responses in space. When higher plants are exposed to short-term (seconds to hours) microgravity, such as on board parabolic flights and sounding rockets, their cells usually exhibit abiotic stress responses. For example, Ca 2+-, lipid-, and pH-signaling are rapidly enhanced, then the production of reactive oxygen species and other radicals increase dramatically along with changes in metabolism and auxin signaling. Under long-term (days to months) microgravity exposure, plants acclimatize to the stress by changing their metabolism and oxidative response and by enhancing other tropic responses. We conclude by suggesting that a systematic analysis of regulatory networks at the molecular level of higher plants is needed to understand the molecular signals in the distinct phases of the microgravity response and adaptation.

  6. Fractionation of metal stable isotopes by higher plants

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Von Blanckenburg, F.; Von Wiren, N.; Guelke, M.; Weiss, D.J.; Bullen, T.D.

    2009-01-01

    Higher plants induce chemical reactions in the rhizosphere, facilitating metal uptake by roots. Fractionation of the isotopes in nutrients such as calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc produces a stable isotope composition in the plants that generally differs from that of the growth medium. Isotope fractionation also occurs during transport of the metals within most plants, but its extent depends on plant species and on the metal, in particular, on the metal's redox state and what ligand it is bound to. The metal stable isotope variations observed in plants create an isotope signature of life at the Earth's surface, contributing substantially to our understanding of metal cycling processes in the environment and in individual organisms.

  7. Fungal elicitors of the phytoalexin response in higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    West, Charles A.

    1981-09-01

    Several types of fungal molecules including cell wall polysaccharides, polypeptides, glycoproteins and lipid molecules have been found to serve as elicitors of phytoalexins in higher plants. Recent work has shown that an extracellular enzyme, endopolygalacturonase, from culture filtrates of the fungus Rhizopus stolonifer elicits the biosynthesis of an antifungal antibiotic, casbene, in extracts of treated castor bean ( Ricinus communis L.) seedlings. A suggested mode of action of this elicitor in the plant in which fragments of the plant cell wall released through the catalytic action of the enzyme serve as secondary elicitors to trigger the plant response is proposed on the basis of preliminary observations. Possible modes of interaction of other types of fungal elicitors with plants are also discussed.

  8. Regulation of cell division in higher plants. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Jacobs, T.W.

    1992-07-01

    Cell division is arguably the most fundamental of all developmental processes. In higher plants, mitotic activity is largely confined to foci of patterned cell divisions called meristems. From these perpetually embryonic tissues arise the plant`s essential organs of light capture, support, protection and reproduction. Once an adequate understanding of plant cell mitotic regulation is attained, unprecedented opportunities will ensue for analyzing and genetically controlling diverse aspects of development, including plant architecture, leaf shape, plant height, and root depth. The mitotic cycle in a variety of model eukaryotic systems in under the control of a regulatory network of striking evolutionary conservation. Homologues of the yeast cdc2 gene, its catalytic product, p34, and the cyclin regulatory subunits of the MPF complex have emerged as ubiquitous mitotic regulators. We have cloned cdc2-like and cyclin genes from pea. As in other eukaryotic model systems, p34 of Pisum sativum is a subunit of a high molecular weight complex which binds the fission yeast p13 protein and displays histone H1 kinase activity in vitro. Our primary objective in this study is to gain baseline information about the regulation of this higher plant cell division control complex in non-dividing, differentiated cells as well as in synchronous and asynchronous mitotic cells. We are investigating cdc2 and cyclin expression at the levels of protein abundance, protein phosphorylation and quaternary associations.

  9. Cellular Mechanisms of Gravitropic Response in Higher Plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medvedev, Sergei; Smolikova, Galina; Pozhvanov, Gregory; Suslov, Dmitry

    The evolutionary success of land plants in adaptation to the vectorial environmental factors was based mainly on the development of polarity systems. In result, normal plant ontogenesis is based on the positional information. Polarity is a tool by which the developing plant organs and tissues are mapped and the specific three-dimensional structure of the organism is created. It is due to their polar organization plants are able to orient themselves relative to the gravity vector and different vectorial cues, and to respond adequately to various stimuli. Gravitation is one of the most important polarized environmental factor that guides the development of plant organisms in space. Every plant can "estimate" its position relative to the gravity vector and correct it, if necessary, by means of polarized growth. The direction and the magnitude of gravitational stimulus are constant during the whole plant ontogenesis. The key plant response to the action of gravity is gravitropism, i.e. the directed growth of organs with respect to the gravity vector. This response is a very convenient model to study the mechanisms of plant orientation in space. The present report is focused on the main cellular mechanisms responsible for graviropic bending in higher plants. These mechanisms and structures include electric polarization of plant cells, Ca ({2+) }gradients, cytoskeleton, G-proteins, phosphoinositides and the machinery responsible for asymmetric auxin distribution. Those mechanisms tightly interact demonstrating some hierarchy and multiple feedbacks. The Ca (2+) gradients provide the primary physiological basis of polarity in plant cells. Calcium ions influence on the bioelectric potentials, the organization of actin cytoskeleton, the activity of Ca (2+) -binding proteins and Ca (2+) -dependent protein kinases. Protein kinases modulate transcription factors activity thereby regulating the gene expression and switching the developmental programs. Actin cytoskeleton affects

  10. Cytoskeletal and membrane dynamics during higher plant cytokinesis.

    PubMed

    McMichael, Colleen M; Bednarek, Sebastian Y

    2013-03-01

    Following mitosis, cytoplasm, organelles and genetic material are partitioned into daughter cells through the process of cytokinesis. In somatic cells of higher plants, two cytoskeletal arrays, the preprophase band and the phragmoplast, facilitate the positioning and de novo assembly of the plant-specific cytokinetic organelle, the cell plate, which develops across the division plane and fuses with the parental plasma membrane to yield distinct new cells. The coordination of cytoskeletal and membrane dynamics required to initiate, assemble and shape the cell plate as it grows toward the mother cell cortex is dependent upon a large array of proteins, including molecular motors, membrane tethering, fusion and restructuring factors and biosynthetic, structural and regulatory elements. This review focuses on the temporal and molecular requirements of cytokinesis in somatic cells of higher plants gleaned from recent studies using cell biology, genetics, pharmacology and biochemistry.

  11. Enhanced bioremediation of petroleum contaminated soils with higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Schwab, A.P.; Banks, M.K.

    1996-10-01

    Introduction of higher plants into a bioremediation system can enhance degradation of total petroleum hydrocarbons and target compounds, particularly relatively immobile and recalcitrant organic molecules. Over the past several years, an interdisciplinary team of civil engineers, chemical engineers, soil chemists, soil microbiologists, and plant scientists at Kansas State University have been studying phytoremediation systems. Greenhouse experiments have focused on selecting plants that are most adapted to degrading target compounds and to surviving in soils highly contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons. Plant species do not seem to differ in their ability to aid in the decomposition of pyrene and anthracene, but benzo[a]pyrene is much more difficult to degrade. Most species are ineffective in enhancing the degradation of benzo[a]pyrene. Four field studies have been initiated in California, Texas, New Jersey, and Virginia to test some of our greenhouse observations.

  12. 97. Catalog B, Higher Plants, 200 2 American Chestnut Tree, ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    97. Catalog B, Higher Plants, 200 2 American Chestnut Tree, Negative No. 6032 (Photographer and date unknown) THIS GHOST FOREST OF BLIGHTED CHESTNUTS ONCE STOOD APPROXIMATELY AT THE LOCATION OF THE BYRD VISITOR CENTER. - Skyline Drive, From Front Royal, VA to Rockfish Gap, VA , Luray, Page County, VA

  13. Links between ER stress and autophagy in plants.

    PubMed

    Pu, Yunting; Bassham, Diane C

    2013-06-01

    Autophagy is a major pathway for the delivery of proteins or organelles to be degraded in the vacuole and recycled. It can be induced by abiotic stresses, senescence, and pathogen infection. Recent research has shown that autophagy is activated by ER stress. Here we review the major progress that has been made in the study of autophagy and ER stress in plants, and describe the links between ER stress and autophagy to guide further study on how autophagy is regulated in response to ER stress.

  14. The Relevance of Higher Plants in Lead Compound Discovery Programs⊥

    PubMed Central

    Kinghorn, A. Douglas; Pan, Li; Fletcher, Joshua N.; Chai, Heebyung

    2011-01-01

    Along with compounds from terrestrial microorganisms, the constituents of higher plants have provided a substantial number of the natural product-derived drugs used currently in western medicine. Interest in the elucidation of new structures of the secondary metabolite constituents of plants has remained high among the natural products community over the first decade of the 21st century, particularly of species that are used in systems of traditional medicine or are utilized as botanical dietary supplements. In this review, progress made in the senior author’s laboratory in research work on naturally occurring sweeteners and other taste-modifying substances and on potential anticancer agents from tropical plants will be described. PMID:21650152

  15. Shedding light on ethylene metabolism in higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigues, Maria A.; Bianchetti, Ricardo E.; Freschi, Luciano

    2014-01-01

    Ethylene metabolism in higher plants is regulated by a wide array of endogenous and environmental factors. During most physiological processes, ethylene levels are mainly determined by a strict control of the rate-limiting biosynthetic steps responsible for the production of 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) and its subsequent conversion to ethylene. Responsible for these reactions, the key enzymes ACC synthase and ACC oxidase are encoded by multigene families formed by members that can be differentially regulated at the transcription and post-translational levels by specific developmental and environmental signals. Among the wide variety of environmental cues controlling plant ethylene production, light quality, duration, and intensity have consistently been demonstrated to influence the metabolism of this plant hormone in diverse plant tissues, organs, and species. Although still not completely elucidated, the mechanisms underlying the interaction between light signal transduction and ethylene evolution appears to involve a complex network that includes central transcription factors connecting multiple signaling pathways, which can be reciprocally modulated by ethylene itself, other phytohormones, and specific light wavelengths. Accumulating evidence has indicated particular photoreceptors as essential mediators in light-induced signaling cascades affecting ethylene levels. Therefore, this review specifically focuses on discussing the current knowledge of the potential molecular mechanisms implicated in the light-induced responses affecting ethylene metabolism during the regulation of developmental and metabolic plant responses. Besides presenting the state of the art in this research field, some overlooked mechanisms and future directions to elucidate the exact nature of the light–ethylene interplay in higher plants will also be compiled and discussed. PMID:25520728

  16. The robustness of plant-pollinator assemblages: linking plant interaction patterns and sensitivity to pollinator loss.

    PubMed

    Astegiano, Julia; Massol, François; Vidal, Mariana Morais; Cheptou, Pierre-Olivier; Guimarães, Paulo R

    2015-01-01

    Most flowering plants depend on pollinators to reproduce. Thus, evaluating the robustness of plant-pollinator assemblages to species loss is a major concern. How species interaction patterns are related to species sensitivity to partner loss may influence the robustness of plant-pollinator assemblages. In plants, both reproductive dependence on pollinators (breeding system) and dispersal ability may modulate plant sensitivity to pollinator loss. For instance, species with strong dependence (e.g. dioecious species) and low dispersal (e.g. seeds dispersed by gravity) may be the most sensitive to pollinator loss. We compared the interaction patterns of plants differing in dependence on pollinators and dispersal ability in a meta-dataset comprising 192 plant species from 13 plant-pollinator networks. In addition, network robustness was compared under different scenarios representing sequences of plant extinctions associated with plant sensitivity to pollinator loss. Species with different dependence on pollinators and dispersal ability showed similar levels of generalization. Although plants with low dispersal ability interacted with more generalized pollinators, low-dispersal plants with strong dependence on pollinators (i.e. the most sensitive to pollinator loss) interacted with more particular sets of pollinators (i.e. shared a low proportion of pollinators with other plants). Only two assemblages showed lower robustness under the scenario considering plant generalization, dependence on pollinators and dispersal ability than under the scenario where extinction sequences only depended on plant generalization (i.e. where higher generalization level was associated with lower probability of extinction). Overall, our results support the idea that species generalization and network topology may be good predictors of assemblage robustness to species loss, independently of plant dispersal ability and breeding system. In contrast, since ecological specialization among

  17. Use of higher plants as screens for toxicity assessment.

    PubMed

    Kristen, U

    1997-01-01

    This review deals with the use of entire plants, seedlings, cell suspension cultures and pollen tubes for the estimation of potential toxicity in the environment, and for risk assessment of chemicals and formulations of human relevance. It is shown that the roots of onions and various crop seedlings, as well as in vitro growing pollen tubes of some mono- and dicotyledonous plants, are most frequently used to obtain toxicity data by determination of root and tube growth inhibition. Both roots and pollen tubes are chloroplast free, non-photosynthetic systems and, therefore, with regard to their cytotoxic reactions are closer to vertebrate tissues and cells than are chloroplast-containing plant organs. Root tips and anthers of flower buds are shown to be applicable to genotoxicity screening by microscopic analysis of mitotic or meiotic aberrations during cell division or microspore development, respectively. The processes of mitosis and meiosis are similar in plants and animals. Therefore, meristematic and sporogenic tissues of plants generally show patterns of cytotoxic response similar to those of embryogenic and spermatogenic tissues of vertebrates. The suitability of root tips, cell suspensions and pollen tubes for the investigation of mechanisms of toxic action and for the analysis of structure-activity relationships is also demonstrated. Two plant-based assays, the Allium test and the pollen tube growth test, both currently being evaluated alongside with established mammalian in vivo and in vitro protocols, are emphasized with regard to their potential use as alternatives to animal in vivo toxicity tests. For both assays, preliminary results indicate that the tips of growing roots and the rapidly elongating pollen tubes of certain higher plant species are as reliable as mammalian cell lines for detecting basal cytotoxicity. It is suggested that seeds and pollen grains, in particular, provide easily storable and convenient systems for inexpensive, relatively

  18. Genetic Manipulation of Condensed Tannins in Higher Plants1

    PubMed Central

    Robbins, Mark P.; Bavage, Adrian D.; Strudwicke, Catherine; Morris, Phillip

    1998-01-01

    We have produced and analyzed transgenic birdsfoot trefoil (Lotus corniculatus L.) plants harboring antisense dihydroflavonol reductase (AS-DFR) sequences. In initial experiments the effect of introducing three different antisense Antirrhinum majus L. DFR constructs into a single recipient genotype (S50) was assessed. There were no obvious effects on plant biomass, but levels of condensed tannins showed a statistical reduction in leaf, stem, and root tissues of some of the antisense lines. Transformation events were also found, which resulted in increased levels of condensed tannins. In subsequent experiments a detailed study of AS-DFR phenotypes was carried out in genotype S33 using pMAJ2 (an antisense construct comprising the 5′ half of the A. majus cDNA). In this case, reduced tannin levels were found in leaf and stem tissues and in juvenile shoot tissues. Analysis of soluble flavonoids and isoflavonoids in tannin down-regulated shoot tissues indicated few obvious default products. When two S33 AS-DFR lines were outcrossed, there was an underrepresentation of transgene sequences in progeny plants and no examples of inheritance of an antisense phenotype were observed. To our knowledge, this is the first report of the genetic manipulation of condensed tannin biosynthesis in higher plants. PMID:9501146

  19. Linking economic activities to the distribution of exotic plants.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Brad W; Irwin, Rebecca E

    2004-12-21

    The human enterprise is flooding Earth's ecosystems with exotic species. Human population size is often correlated with species introductions, whereas more proximate mechanisms, such as economic activities, are frequently overlooked. Here we present a hypothesis that links ecology and economics to provide a causal framework for the distribution of exotic plants in the United States. We test two competing hypotheses (the population-only and population-economic models) using a national data set of exotic plants, employing a statistical framework to simultaneously model direct and indirect effects of human population and ecological and economic variables. The population-only model included direct effects of human population and ecological factors as predictors of exotics. In contrast, the population-economic model included the direct effects of economic and ecological factors and the indirect effects of human population as predictors of exotics. The explicit addition of economic activity in the population-economic model provided a better explanation for the distribution of exotics than did the population-only model. The population-economic model explained 75% of the variation in the number of exotic plants in the 50 states and provided a good description of the observed number of exotic plants in the Canadian provinces and in other nations in 85% of the cases. A specific economic activity, real estate gross state product, had the strongest positive effect on the number of exotics. The strong influence of economics on exotics demonstrates that economics matter for resolving the exotic-species problem because the underlying causes, and some of the solutions, may lie in human-economic behaviors.

  20. A Causality Analysis of the Link between Higher Education and Economic Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    De Meulemeester, Jean-Luc; Rochat, Denis

    1995-01-01

    Summarizes a study exploring the relationship between higher education and economic development, using cointegration and Granger-causality tests. Results show a significant causality from higher education efforts in Sweden, United Kingdom, Japan, and France. However, a similar causality link has not been found for Italy or Australia. (68…

  1. Lead stress effects on physiobiochemical activities of higher plants.

    PubMed

    Sengar, Rakesh Singh; Gautam, Madhu; Sengar, Rajesh Singh; Garg, Sanjay Kumar; Sengar, Kalpana; Chaudhary, Reshu

    2008-01-01

    Lead is a metallic pollutant emanating from various environmental sources including industrial wastes, combustion of fossil fuels, and use of agrochemicals. Lead may exist in the atmosphere as dusts, fumes, mists, and vapors, and in soil as a mineral. Soils along roadsides are rich in lead because vehicles burn leaded gasoline, which contributes to environmental lead pollution. Other important sources of lead pollution are geological weathering, industrial processing of ores and minerals, leaching of lead from solid wastes, and animal and human excreta. Lead is nondegradable, readily enters the food chain, and can subsequently endanger human and animal health. Lead is one of the most important environment pollutants and deserves the increasing attention it has received in recent decades. The present effort was undertaken to review lead stress effects on the physiobiochemical activity of higher plants. Lead has gained considerable attention as a potent heavy metal pollutant because of growing anthropogenic pressure on the environment. Lead-contaminated soils show a sharp decline in crop productivity. Lead is absorbed by plants mainly through the root system and in minor amounts through the leaves. Within the plants, lead accumulates primarily in roots, but some is translocated to aerial plant parts. Soil pH, soil particle size, cation-exchange capacity, as well as root surface area, root exudation, and mycorrhizal transpiration rate affect the availability and uptake of lead by plants. Only a limited amount of lead is translocated from roots to other organs because there are natural plant barriers in the root endodermis. At lethal concentrations, this barrier is broken and lead may enter vascular tissues. Lead in plants may form deposits of various sizes, present mainly in intercellular spaces, cell walls, and vacuoles. Small deposits of this metal are also seen in the endoplasmic reticulum, dictyosome, and dictyosome-derived vesicles. After entering the cells, lead

  2. Cloning higher plants from aseptically cultured tissues and cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krikorian, A. D.

    1982-01-01

    A review of aseptic culture methods for higher plants is presented, which focuses on the existing problems that limit or prevent the full realization of cloning plants from free cells. It is shown that substantial progress in clonal multiplication has been made with explanted stem tips or lateral buds which can be stimulated to produce numerous precocious axillary branches. These branches can then be separated or subdivided and induced to root in order to yield populations of genetically and phenotypically uniorm plantlets. Similarly, undifferentiated calluses can sometimes be induced to form shoots and/or roots adventitiously. Although the cell culture techniques required to produce somatic embryos are presently rudimentary, steady advances are being made in learning how to stimulate formation of somatic or adventive embryos from totipotent cells grown in suspension cultures. It is concluded that many problems exist in the producing and growing of totipotent or morphogenetically competent cell suspensions, but the potential benefits are great.

  3. Metabolic engineering of higher plants and algae for isoprenoid production.

    PubMed

    Kempinski, Chase; Jiang, Zuodong; Bell, Stephen; Chappell, Joe

    2015-01-01

    Isoprenoids are a class of compounds derived from the five carbon precursors, dimethylallyl diphosphate, and isopentenyl diphosphate. These molecules present incredible natural chemical diversity, which can be valuable for humans in many aspects such as cosmetics, agriculture, and medicine. However, many terpenoids are only produced in small quantities by their natural hosts and can be difficult to generate synthetically. Therefore, much interest and effort has been directed toward capturing the genetic blueprint for their biochemistry and engineering it into alternative hosts such as plants and algae. These autotrophic organisms are attractive when compared to traditional microbial platforms because of their ability to utilize atmospheric CO2 as a carbon substrate instead of supplied carbon sources like glucose. This chapter will summarize important techniques and strategies for engineering the accumulation of isoprenoid metabolites into higher plants and algae by choosing the correct host, avoiding endogenous regulatory mechanisms, and optimizing potential flux into the target compound. Future endeavors will build on these efforts by fine-tuning product accumulation levels via the vast amount of available "-omic" data and devising metabolic engineering schemes that integrate this into a whole-organism approach. With the development of high-throughput transformation protocols and synthetic biology molecular tools, we have only begun to harness the power and utility of plant and algae metabolic engineering.

  4. Distribution, congruence, and hotspots of higher plants in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Lina; Li, Jinya; Liu, Huiyuan; Qin, Haining

    2016-01-01

    Identifying biodiversity hotspots has become a central issue in setting up priority protection areas, especially as financial resources for biological diversity conservation are limited. Taking China’s Higher Plants Red List (CHPRL), including Bryophytes, Ferns, Gymnosperms, Angiosperms, as the data source, we analyzed the geographic patterns of species richness, endemism, and endangerment via data processing at a fine grid-scale with an average edge length of 30 km based on three aspects of richness information: species richness, endemic species richness, and threatened species richness. We sought to test the accuracy of hotspots used in identifying conservation priorities with regard to higher plants. Next, we tested the congruence of the three aspects and made a comparison of the similarities and differences between the hotspots described in this paper and those in previous studies. We found that over 90% of threatened species in China are concentrated. While a high spatial congruence is observed among the three measures, there is a low congruence between two different sets of hotspots. Our results suggest that biodiversity information should be considered when identifying biological hotspots. Other factors, such as scales, should be included as well to develop biodiversity conservation plans in accordance with the region’s specific conditions.

  5. Distribution, congruence, and hotspots of higher plants in China

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Lina; Li, Jinya; Liu, Huiyuan; Qin, Haining

    2016-01-01

    Identifying biodiversity hotspots has become a central issue in setting up priority protection areas, especially as financial resources for biological diversity conservation are limited. Taking China’s Higher Plants Red List (CHPRL), including Bryophytes, Ferns, Gymnosperms, Angiosperms, as the data source, we analyzed the geographic patterns of species richness, endemism, and endangerment via data processing at a fine grid-scale with an average edge length of 30 km based on three aspects of richness information: species richness, endemic species richness, and threatened species richness. We sought to test the accuracy of hotspots used in identifying conservation priorities with regard to higher plants. Next, we tested the congruence of the three aspects and made a comparison of the similarities and differences between the hotspots described in this paper and those in previous studies. We found that over 90% of threatened species in China are concentrated. While a high spatial congruence is observed among the three measures, there is a low congruence between two different sets of hotspots. Our results suggest that biodiversity information should be considered when identifying biological hotspots. Other factors, such as scales, should be included as well to develop biodiversity conservation plans in accordance with the region’s specific conditions. PMID:26750244

  6. Plant invasion is associated with higher plant-soil nutrient concentrations in nutrient-poor environments.

    PubMed

    Sardans, Jordi; Bartrons, Mireia; Margalef, Olga; Gargallo-Garriga, Albert; Janssens, Ivan A; Ciais, Phillipe; Obersteiner, Michael; Sigurdsson, Bjarni D; Chen, Han Y H; Peñuelas, Josep

    2017-03-01

    Plant invasion is an emerging driver of global change worldwide. We aimed to disentangle its impacts on plant-soil nutrient concentrations. We conducted a meta-analysis of 215 peer-reviewed articles and 1233 observations. Invasive plant species had globally higher N and P concentrations in photosynthetic tissues but not in foliar litter, in comparison with their native competitors. Invasive plants were also associated with higher soil C and N stocks and N, P, and K availabilities. The differences in N and P concentrations in photosynthetic tissues and in soil total C and N, soil N, P, and K availabilities between invasive and native species decreased when the environment was richer in nutrient resources. The results thus suggested higher nutrient resorption efficiencies in invasive than in native species in nutrient-poor environments. There were differences in soil total N concentrations but not in total P concentrations, indicating that the differences associated to invasive plants were related with biological processes, not with geochemical processes. The results suggest that invasiveness is not only a driver of changes in ecosystem species composition but that it is also associated with significant changes in plant-soil elemental composition and stoichiometry.

  7. Are the metabolomic responses to folivory of closely related plant species linked to macroevolutionary and plant-folivore coevolutionary processes?

    SciTech Connect

    Rivas-Ubach, Albert; Hódar, José A.; Sardans, Jordi; Kyle, Jennifer E.; Kim, Young-Mo; Oravec, Michal; Urban, Otmar; Guenther, Alex; Peñuelas, Josep

    2016-06-02

    The debate whether the coevolution of plants and insects or macroevolutionary processes (phylogeny) is the main driver determining the arsenal of molecular defensive compounds of plants remains unresolved. Attacks by herbivorous insects affect not only the composition of defensive compounds in plants but the entire metabolome (the set of molecular metabolites), including defensive compounds. Metabolomes are the final products of genotypes and are directly affected by macroevolutionary processes, so closely related species should have similar metabolomic compositions and may respond in similar ways to attacks by folivores. We analyzed the elemental compositions and metabolomes of needles from Pinus pinaster, P. nigra and P. sylvestris to determine if these closely related Pinus species with different coevolutionary histories with the caterpillars of the processionary moth respond similarly to attacks by this lepidopteran. All pines had different metabolomes and metabolic responses to herbivorous attack. The metabolomic variation among the pine species and the responses to folivory reflected their macroevolutionary relationships, with P. pinaster having the most divergent metabolome. The concentrations of phenolic metabolites were generally not higher in the attacked trees, which had lower concentrations of terpenes, suggesting that herbivores avoid individuals with high concentrations of terpenes. Our results suggest that macroevolutionary history plays important roles in the metabolomic responses of these pine species to folivory, but plant-insect coevolution probably constrains those responses. Combinations of different evolutionary factors and trade-offs are likely responsible for the different responses of each species to folivory, which is not necessarily exclusively linked to plant-insect coevolution.

  8. Light intensity-dependent retrograde signalling in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Szechyńska-Hebda, Magdalena; Karpiński, Stanisław

    2013-11-15

    Plants are able to acclimate to highly fluctuating light environment and evolved a short- and long-term light acclimatory responses, that are dependent on chloroplasts retrograde signalling. In this review we summarise recent evidences suggesting that the chloroplasts act as key sensors of light intensity changes in a wide range (low, high and excess light conditions) as well as sensors of darkness. They also participate in transduction and synchronisation of systemic retrograde signalling in response to differential light exposure of distinct leaves. Regulation of intra- and inter-cellular chloroplast retrograde signalling is dependent on the developmental and functional stage of the plastids. Therefore, it is discussed in following subsections: firstly, chloroplast biogenic control of nuclear genes, for example, signals related to photosystems and pigment biogenesis during early plastid development; secondly, signals in the mature chloroplast induced by changes in photosynthetic electron transport, reactive oxygen species, hormones and metabolite biosynthesis; thirdly, chloroplast signalling during leaf senescence. Moreover, with a help of meta-analysis of multiple microarray experiments, we showed that the expression of the same set of genes is regulated specifically in particular types of signals and types of light conditions. Furthermore, we also highlight the alternative scenarios of the chloroplast retrograde signals transduction and coordination linked to the role of photo-electrochemical signalling.

  9. Variation potential in higher plants: Mechanisms of generation and propagation

    PubMed Central

    Vodeneev, Vladimir; Akinchits, Elena; Sukhov, Vladimir

    2015-01-01

    Long-distance intercellular electrical signals, including variation potential (VP) in higher plants, are a potential mechanism of coordinate functional responses in different plant cells under action of stressors. VP, which is caused by damaging factors (e.g., heating, crushing), is transient depolarization with an irregular shape. It can include a long-term depolarization and fast impulse depolarization (‘AP-like’ spikes). Mechanisms of VP generation and propagation are still under investigation. It is probable that VP is a local electrical response induced by propagation of hydraulic wave and (or) chemical agent. Both hypotheses are based on numerous experimental results but they predict VP velocities which are not in a good accordance with speed of variation potential propagation. Thus combination of hydraulic and chemical signals is the probable mechanism of VP propagation. VP generation is traditionally connected with transient H+-ATPase inactivation, but AP-like spikes are also connected with passive ions fluxes. Ca2+ influx is a probable mechanism which triggers H+-ATPase inactivation and ions channels activation at VP. PMID:26313506

  10. Mitochondrial glycolate oxidation contributes to photorespiration in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Niessen, Markus; Thiruveedhi, Krishnaveni; Rosenkranz, Ruben; Kebeish, Rashad; Hirsch, Heinz-Josef; Kreuzaler, Fritz; Peterhänsel, Christoph

    2007-01-01

    The oxidation of glycolate to glyoxylate is an important reaction step in photorespiration. Land plants and charophycean green algae oxidize glycolate in the peroxisome using oxygen as a co-factor, whereas chlorophycean green algae use a mitochondrial glycolate dehydrogenase (GDH) with organic co-factors. Previous analyses revealed the existence of a GDH in the mitochondria of Arabidopsis thaliana (AtGDH). In this study, the contribution of AtGDH to photorespiration was characterized. Both RNA abundance and mitochondrial GDH activity were up-regulated under photorespiratory growth conditions. Labelling experiments indicated that glycolate oxidation in mitochondrial extracts is coupled to CO(2) release. This effect could be enhanced by adding co-factors for aminotransferases, but is inhibited by the addition of glycine. T-DNA insertion lines for AtGDH show a drastic reduction in mitochondrial GDH activity and CO(2) release from glycolate. Furthermore, photorespiration is reduced in these mutant lines compared with the wild type, as revealed by determination of the post-illumination CO(2) burst and the glycine/serine ratio under photorespiratory growth conditions. The data show that mitochondrial glycolate oxidation contributes to photorespiration in higher plants. This indicates the conservation of chlorophycean photorespiration in streptophytes despite the evolution of leaf-type peroxisomes.

  11. Phototolerance of lichens, mosses and higher plants in an alpine environment: analysis of photoreactions.

    PubMed

    Heber, U; Bilger, W; Bligny, R; Lange, O L

    2000-11-01

    Adaptation to excessive light is one of the requirements of survival in an alpine environment particularly for poikilohydric organisms which in contrast to the leaves of higher plants tolerate full dehydration. Changes in modulated chlorophyll fluorescence and 820-nm absorption were investigated in the lichens Xanthoria elegans (Link) Th. Fr. and Rhizocarpon geographicum (L.) DC, in the moss Grimmia alpestris Limpr. and the higher plants Geum montanum L., Gentiana lutea L. and Pisum sativum L., all collected at altitudes higher than 2000 m above sea level. In the dehydrated state, chlorophyll fluorescence was very low in the lichens and the moss, but high in the higher plants. It increased on rehydration in the lichens and the moss, but decreased in the higher plants. Light-induced charge separation in photosystem II was indicated by pulse-induced fluorescence increases only in dried leaves, not in the dry moss and dry lichens. Strong illumination caused photodamage in the dried leaves, but not in the dry moss and dry lichens. Light-dependent increases in 820-nm absorption revealed formation of potential quenchers of chlorophyll fluorescence in all dehydrated plants, but energy transfer to quenchers decreased chlorophyll fluorescence only in the moss and the lichens, not in the higher plants. In hydrated systems, coupled cyclic electron transport is suggested to occur concurrently with linear electron transport under strong actinic illumination particularly in the lichens because far more electrons became available after actinic illumination for the reduction of photo-oxidized P700 than were available in the pool of electron carriers between photosystems II and I. In the moss Grimmia, but not in the lichens or in leaves, light-dependent quenching of chlorophyll fluorescence was extensive even under nitrogen, indicating anaerobic thylakoid acidification by persistent cyclic electron transport. In the absence of actinic illumination, acidification by ca. 8% CO2 in

  12. Sugarcoated isolation: evidence that social avoidance is linked to higher basal glucose levels and higher consumption of glucose

    PubMed Central

    Ein-Dor, Tsachi; Coan, James A.; Reizer, Abira; Gross, Elizabeth B.; Dahan, Dana; Wegener, Meredyth A.; Carel, Rafael; Cloninger, Claude R.; Zohar, Ada H.

    2015-01-01

    Objective: The human brain adjusts its level of effort in coping with various life stressors as a partial function of perceived access to social resources. We examined whether people who avoid social ties maintain a higher fasting basal level of glucose in their bloodstream and consume more sugar-rich food, reflecting strategies to draw more on personal resources when threatened. Methods: In Study 1 (N = 60), we obtained fasting blood glucose and adult attachment orientations data. In Study 2 (N = 285), we collected measures of fasting blood glucose and adult attachment orientations from older adults of mixed gender, using a measure of attachment style different from Study 1. In Study 3 (N = 108), we examined the link between trait-like attachment avoidance, manipulation of an asocial state, and consumption of sugar-rich food. In Study 4 (N = 115), we examined whether manipulating the social network will moderate the effect of attachment avoidance on consumption of sugar-rich food. Results: In Study 1, fasting blood glucose levels corresponded with higher attachment avoidance scores after statistically adjusting for time of assessment and interpersonal anxiety. For Study 2, fasting blood glucose continued to correspond with higher adult attachment avoidance even after statistically adjusting for interpersonal anxiety, stress indices, age, gender, social support and body mass. In Study 3, people high in attachment avoidance consume more sugar-rich food, especially when reminded of asocial tendencies. Study 4 indicated that after facing a stressful task in the presence of others, avoidant people gather more sugar-rich food than more socially oriented people. Conclusion: Results are consistent with the suggestion that socially avoidant individuals upwardly adjust their basal glucose levels and consume more glucose-rich food with the expectation of increased personal effort because of limited access to social resources. Further investigation of this link is warranted

  13. Need for higher fuel burnup at the Hatch Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Beckhman, J.T.

    1996-03-01

    Hatch is a BWR 4 and has been in operation for some time. The first unit became commercial about 1975. Obtaining higher burnups, or higher average discharge exposures, is nothing new at Hatch. Since we have started, the discharge exposure of the plant has increased. Now, of course, we are not approaching the numbers currently being discussed but, the average discharge exposure has increased from around 20,000 MWD/MTU in the early to mid-1980s to 34,000 MWD/MTU in 1994, I am talking about batch average values. There are also peak bundle and peak rod values. You will have to make the conversions if you think in one way or the other because I am talking in batch averages. During Hatch`s operating history we have had some problems with fuel failure. Higher burnup fuel raises a concern about how much fuel failure you are going to have. Fuel failure is, of course, an economic issue with us. Back in the early 1980s, we had a problem with crud-induced localized corrosion, known as CILC. We have gotten over that, but we had some times when it was up around 27 fuel failures a year. That is not a pleasant time to live through because it is not what you want from an economic viewpoint or any other. We have gotten that down. We have had some fuel failures recently, but they have not been related to fuel burnup or to corrosion. In fact, the number of failures has decreased from the early 1980s to the 90s even though burnup increased during that time. The fuel failures are more debris-related-type failures. In addition to increasing burnups, utilities are actively evaluating or have already incorporated power uprate and longer fuel cycles (e.g., 2-year cycles). The goal is to balance out the higher power density, longer cycles, higher burnup, and to have no leakers. Why do we as an industry want to have higher burnup fuel? That is what I want to tell you a little bit about.

  14. Transport, Compartmentation, and Metabolism of Homoserine in Higher Plant Cells

    PubMed Central

    Aubert, Serge; Curien, Gilles; Bligny, Richard; Gout, Elisabeth; Douce, Roland

    1998-01-01

    The transport, compartmentation, and metabolism of homoserine was characterized in two strains of meristematic higher plant cells, the dicotyledonous sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus) and the monocotyledonous weed Echinochloa colonum. Homoserine is an intermediate in the synthesis of the aspartate-derived amino acids methionine, threonine (Thr), and isoleucine. Using 13C-nuclear magnetic resonance, we showed that homoserine actively entered the cells via a high-affinity proton-symport carrier (Km approximately 50–60 μm) at the maximum rate of 8 ± 0.5 μmol h−1 g−1 cell wet weight, and in competition with serine or Thr. We could visualize the compartmentation of homoserine, and observed that it accumulated at a concentration 4 to 5 times higher in the cytoplasm than in the large vacuolar compartment. 31P-nuclear magnetic resonance permitted us to analyze the phosphorylation of homoserine. When sycamore cells were incubated with 100 μm homoserine, phosphohomoserine steadily accumulated in the cytoplasmic compartment over 24 h at the constant rate of 0.7 μmol h−1 g−1 cell wet weight, indicating that homoserine kinase was not inhibited in vivo by its product, phosphohomoserine. The rate of metabolism of phosphohomoserine was much lower (0.06 μmol h−1 g−1 cell wet weight) and essentially sustained Thr accumulation. Similarly, homoserine was actively incorporated by E. colonum cells. However, in contrast to what was seen in sycamore cells, large accumulations of Thr were observed, whereas the intracellular concentration of homoserine remained low, and phosphohomoserine did not accumulate. These differences with sycamore cells were attributed to the presence of a higher Thr synthase activity in this strain of monocot cells. PMID:9490758

  15. Milkweed butterfly resistance to plant toxins is linked to sequestration, not coping with a toxic diet.

    PubMed

    Petschenka, Georg; Agrawal, Anurag A

    2015-11-07

    Insect resistance to plant toxins is widely assumed to have evolved in response to using defended plants as a dietary resource. We tested this hypothesis in the milkweed butterflies (Danaini) which have progressively evolved higher levels of resistance to cardenolide toxins based on amino acid substitutions of their cellular sodium-potassium pump (Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase). Using chemical, physiological and caterpillar growth assays on diverse milkweeds (Asclepias spp.) and isolated cardenolides, we show that resistant Na(+)/K(+)-ATPases are not necessary to cope with dietary cardenolides. By contrast, sequestration of cardenolides in the body (as a defence against predators) is associated with the three levels of Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase resistance. To estimate the potential physiological burden of cardenolide sequestration without Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase adaptations, we applied haemolymph of sequestering species on isolated Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase of sequestering and non-sequestering species. Haemolymph cardenolides dramatically impair non-adapted Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase, but had systematically reduced effects on Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase of sequestering species. Our data indicate that major adaptations to plant toxins may be evolutionarily linked to sequestration, and may not necessarily be a means to eat toxic plants. Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase adaptations thus were a potential mechanism through which predators spurred the coevolutionary arms race between plants and insects.

  16. Milkweed butterfly resistance to plant toxins is linked to sequestration, not coping with a toxic diet

    PubMed Central

    Petschenka, Georg; Agrawal, Anurag A.

    2015-01-01

    Insect resistance to plant toxins is widely assumed to have evolved in response to using defended plants as a dietary resource. We tested this hypothesis in the milkweed butterflies (Danaini) which have progressively evolved higher levels of resistance to cardenolide toxins based on amino acid substitutions of their cellular sodium–potassium pump (Na+/K+-ATPase). Using chemical, physiological and caterpillar growth assays on diverse milkweeds (Asclepias spp.) and isolated cardenolides, we show that resistant Na+/K+-ATPases are not necessary to cope with dietary cardenolides. By contrast, sequestration of cardenolides in the body (as a defence against predators) is associated with the three levels of Na+/K+-ATPase resistance. To estimate the potential physiological burden of cardenolide sequestration without Na+/K+-ATPase adaptations, we applied haemolymph of sequestering species on isolated Na+/K+-ATPase of sequestering and non-sequestering species. Haemolymph cardenolides dramatically impair non-adapted Na+/K+-ATPase, but had systematically reduced effects on Na+/K+-ATPase of sequestering species. Our data indicate that major adaptations to plant toxins may be evolutionarily linked to sequestration, and may not necessarily be a means to eat toxic plants. Na+/K+-ATPase adaptations thus were a potential mechanism through which predators spurred the coevolutionary arms race between plants and insects. PMID:26538594

  17. Polyketide folding in higher plants: biosynthesis of the phenylanthraquinone knipholone.

    PubMed

    Bringmann, Gerhard; Noll, Torsten F; Gulder, Tanja; Dreyer, Michael; Grüne, Matthias; Moskau, Detlef

    2007-04-27

    The biosynthesis of knipholone, as an axially chiral phenylanthraquinone, in higher plants was examined by feeding experiments with [13C2]-labeled precursors. [13C2]-Acetate and advanced synthetic intermediates were fed to sterile cultures of Kniphofia pumila (Asphodelaceae), with subsequent NMR analysis on the isolated natural product involving 2D INADEQUATE and SELINQUATE experiments. Due to its uneven number of carbon atoms, and because of its uncertain decarboxylation site, the "northern" part of the molecule (i.e., the chrysophanol portion) might originate from four different cyclization modes. According to the labeling pattern of the product isolated after incorporation, this anthraquinone part of knipholone is formed by the so-called F folding mode (originally established for fungi). The acetophenone part of the molecule, which does not undergo a decarboxylation reaction, originates from four acetate units. The surprising lack of randomization of the intact [13C2] units in this "southern" part reveals the absence of a free symmetric intermediate as initially anticipated. This is in agreement with the intact incorporation of the "authentic" southern molecular portion, 4,6-dihydroxy-2-methoxyacetophenone, while the corresponding symmetrical candidate trihydroxyacetophenone was clearly not incorporated, showing that the O-methylation of the freshly cyclized tetraketide is the step that prevents symmetrization of the acetophenone.

  18. Higher plant modelling for life support applications: first results of a simple mechanistic model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hezard, Pauline; Dussap, Claude-Gilles; Sasidharan L, Swathy

    2012-07-01

    In the case of closed ecological life support systems, the air and water regeneration and food production are performed using microorganisms and higher plants. Wheat, rice, soybean, lettuce, tomato or other types of eatable annual plants produce fresh food while recycling CO2 into breathable oxygen. Additionally, they evaporate a large quantity of water, which can be condensed and used as potable water. This shows that recycling functions of air revitalization and food production are completely linked. Consequently, the control of a growth chamber for higher plant production has to be performed with efficient mechanistic models, in order to ensure a realistic prediction of plant behaviour, water and gas recycling whatever the environmental conditions. Purely mechanistic models of plant production in controlled environments are not available yet. This is the reason why new models must be developed and validated. This work concerns the design and test of a simplified version of a mathematical model coupling plant architecture and mass balance purposes in order to compare its results with available data of lettuce grown in closed and controlled chambers. The carbon exchange rate, water absorption and evaporation rate, biomass fresh weight as well as leaf surface are modelled and compared with available data. The model consists of four modules. The first one evaluates plant architecture, like total leaf surface, leaf area index and stem length data. The second one calculates the rate of matter and energy exchange depending on architectural and environmental data: light absorption in the canopy, CO2 uptake or release, water uptake and evapotranspiration. The third module evaluates which of the previous rates is limiting overall biomass growth; and the last one calculates biomass growth rate depending on matter exchange rates, using a global stoichiometric equation. All these rates are a set of differential equations, which are integrated with time in order to provide

  19. Na+ Tolerance and Na+ Transport in Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    TESTER, MARK; DAVENPORT, ROMOLA

    2003-01-01

    Tolerance to high soil [Na+] involves processes in many different parts of the plant, and is manifested in a wide range of specializations at disparate levels of organization, such as gross morphology, membrane transport, biochemistry and gene transcription. Multiple adaptations to high [Na+] operate concurrently within a particular plant, and mechanisms of tolerance show large taxonomic variation. These mechanisms can occur in all cells within the plant, or can occur in specific cell types, reflecting adaptations at two major levels of organization: those that confer tolerance to individual cells, and those that contribute to tolerance not of cells per se, but of the whole plant. Salt‐tolerant cells can contribute to salt tolerance of plants; but we suggest that equally important in a wide range of conditions are processes involving the management of Na+ movements within the plant. These require specific cell types in specific locations within the plant catalysing transport in a coordinated manner. For further understanding of whole plant tolerance, we require more knowledge of cell‐specific transport processes and the consequences of manipulation of transporters and signalling elements in specific cell types. PMID:12646496

  20. Cesium-137 accumulation in higher plants before and after Chernobyl

    SciTech Connect

    Sawidis, T.; Drossos, E.; Papastefanou, C. ); Heinrick, G. )

    1990-01-01

    Cesium-137 concentrations in plant species of three biotypes of northern Greece, differing in location as well as in vegetation, are reported following the Chernobyl reactor accident. The cesium uptake by plants was due to the foliar deposition rather than the root uptake. The highest level of cesium in plants was found in Ranunculus sardous, a pubescent plant. The {sup 137}Cs concentration was about 22kBq kg{sup {minus}1}d.w. A high level of cesium was also found in Salix alba ({sup 137}Cs: 19.6 kBq kg{sup {minus}1} d.w.), a deciduous tree showing that hairy leaves or leaves having rough and large surfaces can absorb greater amounts of radioactivity (surface effect). A comparison is also made between the results of measurements of the present study and the results of measurements of some herbarium plants collected one year before the accident as well as the results of measurements of some new plants grown and collected one year after the accident resulting in a natural removal rate of {sup 137}Cs in plants varying from 14 to 130 days.

  1. Cell wall, cytoskeleton, and cell expansion in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Bashline, Logan; Lei, Lei; Li, Shundai; Gu, Ying

    2014-04-01

    To accommodate two seemingly contradictory biological roles in plant physiology, providing both the rigid structural support of plant cells and the adjustable elasticity needed for cell expansion, the composition of the plant cell wall has evolved to become an intricate network of cellulosic, hemicellulosic, and pectic polysaccharides and protein. Due to its complexity, many aspects of the cell wall influence plant cell expansion, and many new and insightful observations and technologies are forthcoming. The biosynthesis of cell wall polymers and the roles of the variety of proteins involved in polysaccharide synthesis continue to be characterized. The interactions within the cell wall polymer network and the modification of these interactions provide insight into how the plant cell wall provides its dual function. The complex cell wall architecture is controlled and organized in part by the dynamic intracellular cytoskeleton and by diverse trafficking pathways of the cell wall polymers and cell wall-related machinery. Meanwhile, the cell wall is continually influenced by hormonal and integrity sensing stimuli that are perceived by the cell. These many processes cooperate to construct, maintain, and manipulate the intricate plant cell wall--an essential structure for the sustaining of the plant stature, growth, and life.

  2. Reconciling functions and evolution of isoprene emission in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Loreto, Francesco; Fineschi, Silvia

    2015-04-01

    Compilation and analysis of existing inventories reveal that isoprene is emitted by c. 20% of the perennial vegetation of tropical and temperate regions of the world. Isoprene emitters are found across different plant families without any clear phylogenetic thread. However, by critically appraising information in inventories, several ecological patterns of isoprene emission can be highlighted, including absence of emission from C4 and annual plants, and widespread emission from perennial and deciduous plants of temperate environments. Based on this analysis, and on available information on biochemistry, ecology and functional roles of isoprene, it is suggested that isoprene may not have evolved to help plants face heavy or prolonged stresses, but rather assists C3 plants to run efficient photosynthesis and to overcome transient and mild stresses, especially during periods of active plant growth in warm seasons. When the stress status persists, or when evergreen leaves cope with multiple and repeated stresses, isoprene biosynthesis is replaced by the synthesis of less volatile secondary compounds, in part produced by the same biochemical pathway, thus indicating causal determinism in the evolution of isoprene-emitting plants in response to the environment.

  3. Regulation of phosphate starvation responses in higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xiao Juan; Finnegan, Patrick M.

    2010-01-01

    Background Phosphorus (P) is often a limiting mineral nutrient for plant growth. Many soils worldwide are deficient in soluble inorganic phosphate (Pi), the form of P most readily absorbed and utilized by plants. A network of elaborate developmental and biochemical adaptations has evolved in plants to enhance Pi acquisition and avoid starvation. Scope Controlling the deployment of adaptations used by plants to avoid Pi starvation requires a sophisticated sensing and regulatory system that can integrate external and internal information regarding Pi availability. In this review, the current knowledge of the regulatory mechanisms that control Pi starvation responses and the local and long-distance signals that may trigger Pi starvation responses are discussed. Uncharacterized mutants that have Pi-related phenotypes and their potential to give us additional insights into regulatory pathways and Pi starvation-induced signalling are also highlighted and assessed. Conclusions An impressive list of factors that regulate Pi starvation responses is now available, as is a good deal of knowledge regarding the local and long-distance signals that allow a plant to sense and respond to Pi availability. However, we are only beginning to understand how these factors and signals are integrated with one another in a regulatory web able to control the range of responses demonstrated by plants grown in low Pi environments. Much more knowledge is needed in this agronomically important area before real gains can be made in improving Pi acquisition in crop plants. PMID:20181569

  4. Characterization of intact N- and O-linked glycopeptides using higher energy collisional dissociation

    SciTech Connect

    Cao, Li; Tolic, Nikola; Qu, Yi; Meng, Da; Zhao, Rui; Zhang, Qibin; Moore, Ronald J.; Zink, Erika M.; Lipton, Mary S.; Pasa-Tolic, Ljiljana; Wu, Si

    2014-01-15

    Simultaneous elucidation of the glycan structure and the glycosylation site are needed to reveal the biological function of protein glycosylation. In this study, we employed a recent type of fragmentation termed higher energy collisional dissociation (HCD) to examine fragmentation patterns of intact glycopeptides generated from a mixture of standard glycosylated proteins. The normalized collisional energy (NCE) value for HCD was varied from 30% to 60% to evaluate the optimal conditions for the fragmentation of peptide backbones and glycoconjugates. Our results indicated that HCD with lower NCE valuespreferentially fragmented the sugar chains attached to the peptides to generate a ladder of neutral loss of monosaccharides, thus enabling the putative glycan structure characterization. Also, detection of the oxonium ions enabled unambiguous differentiation of glycopeptides from non-glycopeptides. On the contrary, HCD with higher NCE values preferentially fragmented the peptide backbone and thus provided information needed for confident peptide identification. We evaluated the HCD approach with alternating NCE parameters for confident characterization of intact N-linked and O-linked glycopeptides in a single liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis. In addition, we applied a novel data analysis pipeline, so-called GlycoFinder, to form a basis for automated data analysis. Overall, 38 unique intact glycopeptides corresponding to eight glycosylation sites (including six N-linked and two O-linked sites) were confidently identified from a standard protein mixture. This approach provided concurrent characterization of both, the peptide and the glycan, thus enabling comprehensive structural characterization of glycoproteins in a single LC-MS/MS analysis.

  5. Rising CO2, Climate Change, and Public Health: Exploring the Links to Plant Biology

    PubMed Central

    Ziska, Lewis H.; Epstein, Paul R.; Schlesinger, William H.

    2009-01-01

    Background Although the issue of anthropogenic climate forcing and public health is widely recognized, one fundamental aspect has remained underappreciated: the impact of climatic change on plant biology and the well-being of human systems. Objectives We aimed to critically evaluate the extant and probable links between plant function and human health, drawing on the pertinent literature. Discussion Here we provide a number of critical examples that range over various health concerns related to plant biology and climate change, including aerobiology, contact dermatitis, pharmacology, toxicology, and pesticide use. Conclusions There are a number of clear links among climate change, plant biology, and public health that remain underappreciated by both plant scientists and health care providers. We demonstrate the importance of such links in our understanding of climate change impacts and provide a list of key questions that will help to integrate plant biology into the current paradigm regarding climate change and human health. PMID:19270781

  6. Symbiosis and the social network of higher plants.

    PubMed

    Venkateshwaran, Muthusubramanian; Volkening, Jeremy D; Sussman, Michael R; Ané, Jean-Michel

    2013-02-01

    In the Internet era, communicating with friends and colleagues via social networks constitutes a significant proportion of our daily activities. Similarly animals and plants also interact with many organisms, some of which are pathogens and do no good for the plant, while others are beneficial symbionts. Almost all plants indulge in developing social networks with microbes, in particular with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, and emerging evidence indicates that most employ an ancient and widespread central 'social media' pathway made of signaling molecules within what is called the SYM pathway. Some plants, like legumes, are particularly active recruiters of friends, as they have established very sophisticated and beneficial interactions with nitrogen-fixing bacteria, also via the SYM pathway. Interestingly, many members of the Brassicaceae, including the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, seem to have removed themselves from this ancestral social network and lost the ability to engage in mutually favorable interactions with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Despite these generalizations, recent studies exploring the root microbiota of A. thaliana have found that in natural conditions, A. thaliana roots are colonized by many different bacterial species and therefore may be using different and probably more recent 'social media' for these interactions. In general, recent advances in the understanding of such molecular machinery required for plant-symbiont associations are being obtained using high throughput genomic profiling strategies including transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics. The crucial mechanistic understanding that such data reveal may provide the infrastructure for future efforts to genetically manipulate crop social networks for our own food and fiber needs.

  7. Biochemical Hydrogen Isotope Fractionation during Lipid Biosynthesis in Higher Plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahmen, A.; Gamarra, B.; Cormier, M. A.

    2014-12-01

    Although hydrogen isotopes (δ2H) of leaf wax lipids are increasingly being applied as (paleo-) hydrological proxies, we still do not understand some of the basic processes that shape the δ2H values of these compounds. In general, it is believed that three variables shape the δ2H values of leaf wax lipids: source water δ2H values, evaporative deuterium (2H) enrichment of leaf water and the biosynthetic fractionation (ɛbio) during the synthesis of organic compounds. While the influences of source water δ2H values and leaf water evaporative 2H enrichment have been well documented, very little is known how ɛbio shapes the δ2H values of plant-derived lipids. I will present the results from recent experiments, where we show that the magnitude of ɛbio, and thus the δ2H value of plant-derived lipids, strongly depends on the carbon (C) metabolism of a plant. Specifically, I will show that plants that rely for their tissue formation on recently assimilated C have δ2H values in their n-alkanes that are up to 60‰ more negative than plants that depend for their tissue formation on stored carbohydrates. Our findings can be explained by the fact that NADPH is the primary source of hydrogen in plant lipids and that the δ2H value of NADPH differs whether NADPH was generated directly in the light reaction of photosynthesis or whether it was generated by processing stored carbohydrates. As such, the δ2H values of plant-derived lipids will directly depend on whether the tissue containing these lipids was synthesized using recent assimilates, e.g. in a C autonomous state or, if it was synthesized from stored or otherwise aquired C sources, e.g. in a not C autonomous state. Given the magnidude of this effect, our results have important implications for interpretation of plant-derived lipid δ2H values when used as (paleo-) hydrological proxies. In addition, our results suggest, that δ2H values of plant-derived lipids could be employed as a new tools to assess the C

  8. Novel links in the plant TOR kinase signaling network.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Yan; Sheen, Jen

    2015-12-01

    Nutrient and energy sensing and signaling mechanisms constitute the most ancient and fundamental regulatory networks to control growth and development in all life forms. The target of rapamycin (TOR) protein kinase is modulated by diverse nutrient, energy, hormone and stress inputs and plays a central role in regulating cell proliferation, growth, metabolism and stress responses from yeasts to plants and animals. Recent chemical, genetic, genomic and metabolomic analyses have enabled significant progress toward molecular understanding of the TOR signaling network in multicellular plants. This review discusses the applications of new chemical tools to probe plant TOR functions and highlights recent findings and predictions on TOR-mediate biological processes. Special focus is placed on novel and evolutionarily conserved TOR kinase effectors as positive and negative signaling regulators that control transcription, translation and metabolism to support cell proliferation, growth and maintenance from embryogenesis to senescence in the plant system.

  9. Linking phosphorus availability with photo-oxidative stress in plants.

    PubMed

    Hernández, Iker; Munné-Bosch, Sergi

    2015-05-01

    Plants have evolved a plethora of mechanisms to circumvent the potential damaging effects of living under low phosphorus availability in the soil. These mechanisms include different levels of organization, from root-shoot signalling at the whole-plant level to specific biochemical responses at the subcellular level, such as reductions in photosynthesis and the consequent activation of photo- and antioxidant mechanisms in chloroplasts. Some recent studies clearly indicate that severe phosphorus deficiency can lead to alterations in the photosynthetic apparatus, including reductions in CO2 assimilation rates, a down-regulation of photosynthesis-related genes and photoinhibition at the photosystem II level, thus causing potential photo-oxidative stress. Photo-oxidative stress is characterized by an increased production of reactive oxygen species in chloroplasts, which at low concentrations can serve a signalling, protective role, but when present at high concentrations can cause damage to lipids, proteins and nucleic acids, thus leading to irreversible injuries. We discuss here the mechanisms that phosphate-starved plants have evolved to withstand photo-oxidative stress, including changes at the subcellular level (e.g. activation of photo- and antioxidant protection mechanisms in chloroplasts), cellular and tissular levels (e.g. activation of photorespiration and anthocyanin accumulation) and whole-plant level (alterations in source-sink relationships modulated by hormones). Of particular importance is the current evidence demonstrating that phosphate-starved plants activate simultaneous responses at multiple levels, from transcriptional changes to root-shoot signalling, to prevent oxidative damage. In this review, we summarize current knowledge about the occurrence of photo-oxidative stress in phosphate-starved plants and highlight the mechanisms these plants have evolved to prevent oxidative damage under phosphorus limitation at the subcellular, cellular and whole-plant

  10. Penetration and Toxicity of Nanomaterials in Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Chichiriccò, Giuseppe; Poma, Anna

    2015-01-01

    Nanomaterials (NMs) comprise either inorganic particles consisting of metals, oxides, and salts that exist in nature and may be also produced in the laboratory, or organic particles originating only from the laboratory, having at least one dimension between 1 and 100 nm in size. According to shape, size, surface area, and charge, NMs have different mechanical, chemical, electrical, and optical properties that make them suitable for technological and biomedical applications and thus they are being increasingly produced and modified. Despite their beneficial potential, their use may be hazardous to health owing to the capacity to enter the animal and plant body and interact with cells. Studies on NMs involve technologists, biologists, physicists, chemists, and ecologists, so there are numerous reports that are significantly raising the level of knowledge, especially in the field of nanotechnology; however, many aspects concerning nanobiology remain undiscovered, including the interactions with plant biomolecules. In this review we examine current knowledge on the ways in which NMs penetrate plant organs and interact with cells, with the aim of shedding light on the reactivity of NMs and toxicity to plants. These points are discussed critically to adjust the balance with regard to the risk to the health of the plants as well as providing some suggestions for new studies on this topic. PMID:28347040

  11. Physiological Functions of the COPI Complex in Higher Plants.

    PubMed

    Ahn, Hee-Kyung; Kang, Yong Won; Lim, Hye Min; Hwang, Inhwan; Pai, Hyun-Sook

    2015-10-01

    COPI vesicles are essential to the retrograde transport of proteins in the early secretory pathway. The COPI coatomer complex consists of seven subunits, termed α-, β-, β'-, γ-, δ-, ε-, and ζ-COP, in yeast and mammals. Plant genomes have homologs of these subunits, but the essentiality of their cellular functions has hampered the functional characterization of the subunit genes in plants. Here we have employed virus-induced gene silencing (VIGS) and dexamethasone (DEX)-inducible RNAi of the COPI subunit genes to study the in vivo functions of the COPI coatomer complex in plants. The β'-, γ-, and δ-COP subunits localized to the Golgi as GFP-fusion proteins and interacted with each other in the Golgi. Silencing of β'-, γ-, and δ-COP by VIGS resulted in growth arrest and acute plant death in Nicotiana benthamiana, with the affected leaf cells exhibiting morphological markers of programmed cell death. Depletion of the COPI subunits resulted in disruption of the Golgi structure and accumulation of autolysosome-like structures in earlier stages of gene silencing. In tobacco BY-2 cells, DEX-inducible RNAi of β'-COP caused aberrant cell plate formation during cytokinesis. Collectively, these results suggest that COPI vesicles are essential to plant growth and survival by maintaining the Golgi apparatus and modulating cell plate formation.

  12. Genotoxic and mutagenic effects of sewage sludge on higher plants.

    PubMed

    Corrêa Martins, Maria Nilza; de Souza, Victor Ventura; Souza, Tatiana da Silva

    2016-02-01

    Sewage treatment yields sludge, which is often used as a soil amendment in agriculture and crop production. Although the sludge contains elevated concentrations of macro and micronutrients, high levels of inorganic and organic compounds with genotoxic and mutagenic properties are present in sludge. Application of sludge in agriculture is a pathway for direct contact of crops to toxic chemicals. The objective of this study was to compile information related to the genotoxic and mutagenic effects of sewage sludge in different plant species. In addition, data are presented on toxicological effects in animals fed with plants grown in soils supplemented with sewage sludge. Despite the benefits of using sewage sludge as organic fertilizer, the data showcased in this review suggest that this residue can induce genetic damage in plants. This review alerts potential risks to health outcomes after the intake of food cultivated in sewage sludge-amended soils.

  13. Predicting molybdenum toxicity to higher plants: influence of soil properties.

    PubMed

    McGrath, S P; Micó, C; Curdy, R; Zhao, F J

    2010-10-01

    The effect of soil properties on the toxicity of molybdenum (Mo) to four plant species was investigated. Soil organic carbon or ammonium-oxalate extractable Fe oxides were found to be the best predictors of the 50% effective dose (ED50) of Mo in different soils, explaining>65% of the variance in ED50 for four species except for ryegrass (26-38%). Molybdenum concentrations in soil solution and consequently plant uptake were increased when soil pH was artificially raised because sorption of Mo to amorphous oxides is greatly reduced at high pH. The addition of sulphate significantly decreased Mo uptake by oilseed rape. For risk assessment, we suggest that Mo toxicity values for plants should be normalised using soil amorphous iron oxide concentrations.

  14. Metabolism of Tryptophol in Higher and Lower Plants 1

    PubMed Central

    Laćan, Goran; Magnus, Volker; Šimaga, Šumski; Iskrić, Sonja; Hall, Prudence J.

    1985-01-01

    Bacteria, thallophytes, and seed plants (107 species), supplied with exogenous indole-3-ethanol (tryptophol), formed one or more of the following metabolites: O-acetyl tryptophol, an unknown tryptophol ester (or a set of structurally closely related esters), tryptophol glucoside, tryptophol galactoside, indole-3-acetic acid (IAA), and indole-3-carboxylic acid. The unknown ester was formed by all species examined; O-acetyl tryptophol appeared sporadically in representatives of most major taxonomic groups. Tryptophol galactoside was found in the algae Chlorella, Euglena, and Ochromonas. The glucoside was formed by many eucaryotic plants, but not by bacteria; it was a significant tryptophol metabolite in vascular plants. IAA, if detectable at all, was usually a minor metabolite, as should be expected, if tryptophol oxidase responds to feedback inhibition by IAA. Indole-3-carboxylic acid, formed by a few fungi and mosses, was the only tryptophol metabolite detected which is likely to be formed via IAA. PMID:16664264

  15. Aliphatic β-Nitroalcohols for Therapeutic Corneoscleral Cross-linking: Chemical Mechanisms and Higher Order Nitroalcohols

    PubMed Central

    Solomon, Marissa R.; Wen, Quan; Turro, Nicholas J.; Trokel, Stephen L.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose. The recent tissue cross-linking studies indicate that aliphatic β-nitroalcohols (BNAs) may be useful as pharmacologic corneoscleral cross-linking agents. The present study was performed to identify the specific chemistry involved under physiologic conditions, with the intent of identifying more effective agents. Methods. The mechanism of chemical cross-linking at pH 7.4 and 37°C was studied using three techniques. The colorimetric Griess assay was used to follow the release of nitrite from three mono-nitroalcohols (2-nitroethanol [2ne], 2-nitro-1-propanol [2nprop]), and 3-nitro-2-pentanol [3n2pent]). Second, the evolution of 2nprop in 0.2 M NaH2PO4/Na2HPO4/D2O was studied using 1H-NMR. Third, thermal shrinkage temperature analysis (Ts), a measure of tissue cross-linking, was used to support information from 1the H-NMR studies. Results. A time-dependent release of nitrite was observed for all three mono-nitroalcohols studied. The maximum levels were comparable using either 2ne or 2nprop (∼30%). However, much less (∼10%) was observed from 3n2pent. Using 1H-NMR, 2nprop evolved into a unique splitting pattern. No match was observed with reference spectra from three possible products of denitration. In contrast, 2-methyl-2-nitro-1,3-propanediol (MNPD), a nitro-diol, was identified, implying the formation of formaldehyde from a retro-nitroaldol (i.e., reverse Henry) reaction. In support of this mechanism, Ts shifts induced by the nitro-triol 2-hydroxymethyl-2-nitro-1,3-propanediol (HNPD) were superior to the nitro-diol MNPD which were superior to the mono nitroalcohol 2nprop. Conclusions. BNAs function as both formaldehyde and nitrite donors under physiologic conditions to cross-link collagenous tissue. Higher order BNAs are more effective than mono nitroalcohols, raising the possibility of using these agents for therapeutic corneoscleral cross-linking. PMID:19797229

  16. Experimental identification of Ca isotopic fractionations in higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cobert, Florian; Schmitt, Anne-Désirée; Bourgeade, Pascale; Labolle, François; Badot, Pierre-Marie; Chabaux, François; Stille, Peter

    2011-10-01

    Hydroponic experiments have been performed in order to identify the co-occurring geochemical and biological processes affecting the Ca isotopic compositions within plants. To test the influence of the Ca concentration and pH of the nutritive solution on the Ca isotopic composition of the different plant organs, four experimental conditions were chosen combining two different Ca concentrations (5 and 60 ppm) and two pHs (4 and 6). The study was performed on rapid growing bean plants in order to have a complete growth cycle. Several organs (root, stem, leaf, reproductive) were sampled at two different growth stages (10 days and 6 weeks of culture) and prepared for Ca isotopic measurements. The results allow to identify three Ca isotopic fractionation levels. The first one takes place when Ca enters the lateral roots, during Ca adsorption on cation-exchange binding sites in the apoplasm. The second one takes place when Ca is bound to the polygalacturonic acids (pectins) of the middle lamella of the xylem cell wall. Finally, the last fractionation occurs in the reproductive organs, also caused by cation-exchange processes with pectins. However, the cell wall structures of these organs and/or number of available exchange sites seem to be different to those of the xylem wall. These three physico-chemical fractionation mechanisms allow to enrich the organs in the light 40Ca isotope. The amplitude of the Ca isotopic fractionation within plant organs is highly dependent on the composition of the nutritive solution: low pH (4) and Ca concentrations (5 ppm) have no effect on the biomass increase of the plants but induce smaller fractionation amplitudes compared to those obtained from other experimental conditions. Thus, Ca isotopic signatures of bean plants are controlled by the external nutritive medium. This study highlights the potential of Ca isotopes to be applied in plant physiology (to identify Ca uptake, circulation and storage mechanisms within plants) and in

  17. Recent advances of flowering locus T gene in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Xu, Feng; Rong, Xiaofeng; Huang, Xiaohua; Cheng, Shuiyuan

    2012-01-01

    Flowering Locus T (FT) can promote flowering in the plant photoperiod pathway and also facilitates vernalization flowering pathways and other ways to promote flowering. The expression of products of the FT gene is recognized as important parts of the flowering hormone and can induce flowering by long-distance transportation. In the present study, many FT-like genes were isolated, and the transgenic results show that FT gene can promote flowering in plants. This paper reviews the progress of the FT gene and its expression products to provide meaningful information for further studies of the functions of FT genes.

  18. Photosynthetic and respiratory activity in germfree higher plant species

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1976-01-01

    Equipment developed for the study of gas exchange in germfree plants is described. The equipment includes a gas exchange chamber to house the plant under study, a gas feed assembly to introduce and remove gas from the chamber, and a clinostat to rotate the apparatus. Fluorescent and incandescent lights are used to illuminate the chamber and a sealed plastic barrier is used to isolate the potting soil from the chamber atmosphere. The gas outflow from the chamber can be diverted to an infrared CO2 analyzer. The performance of the system was evaluated.

  19. CAROTENOID BIOSYNTHESIS IN PHOTO-SYNTHETIC BACTERIA AND HIGHER PLANTS.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    Investigation on the biosynthesis of plant sterols are described. A number of possible phytosterol precursors were identified in peas and larch and...of the steroid side chain. Using mevalonic acid and methionine doubly labelled with 14C and tritium studies were made regarding the mechanism of alkylation of the phytosterol side chain. (Author)

  20. Circadian rhythms and post-transcriptional regulation in higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Romanowski, Andrés; Yanovsky, Marcelo J.

    2015-01-01

    The circadian clock of plants allows them to cope with daily changes in their environment. This is accomplished by the rhythmic regulation of gene expression, in a process that involves many regulatory steps. One of the key steps involved at the RNA level is post-transcriptional regulation, which ensures a correct control on the different amounts and types of mRNA that will ultimately define the current physiological state of the plant cell. Recent advances in the study of the processes of regulation of pre-mRNA processing, RNA turn-over and surveillance, regulation of translation, function of lncRNAs, biogenesis and function of small RNAs, and the development of bioinformatics tools have helped to vastly expand our understanding of how this regulatory step performs its role. In this work we review the current progress in circadian regulation at the post-transcriptional level research in plants. It is the continuous interaction of all the information flow control post-transcriptional processes that allow a plant to precisely time and predict daily environmental changes. PMID:26124767

  1. The Impact of Higher Education Law on Physical Plant Administrators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Casey, John M.

    This paper reviews the basic legal relationships and duties that affect higher education facility management with special emphasis on the relationships with students, faculty, and staff in both public and private colleges and universities. An introduction briefly reviews the development of higher education law beginning with a landmark case in…

  2. Invasive plant ecology and management: Linking processes to practice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This book brings together 10 chapters from renowned researchers that study how ecosystems operate and how to adopt the principles of ecology to manage invasive plants. This book taps this expertise by seeking to bridge the inherent disconnect between processes operating within ecosystems and the pr...

  3. Temperature stress and plant sexual reproduction: uncovering the weakest links

    PubMed Central

    Zinn, Kelly E.; Tunc-Ozdemir, Meral; Harper, Jeffrey F.

    2010-01-01

    The reproductive (gametophytic) phase in flowering plants is often highly sensitive to hot or cold temperature stresses, with even a single hot day or cold night sometimes being fatal to reproductive success. This review describes studies of temperature stress on several crop plants, which suggest that pollen development and fertilization may often be the most sensitive reproductive stage. Transcriptome and proteomic studies on several plant species are beginning to identify stress response pathways that function during pollen development. An example is provided here of genotypic differences in the reproductive stress tolerance between two ecotypes of Arabidopsis thaliana Columbia (Col) and Hilversum (Hi-0), when reproducing under conditions of hot days and cold nights. Hi-0 exhibited a more severe reduction in seed set, correlated with a reduction in pollen tube growth potential and tropism defects. Hi-0 thus provides an Arabidopsis model to investigate strategies for improved stress tolerance in pollen. Understanding how different plants cope with stress during reproductive development offers the potential to identify genetic traits that could be manipulated to improve temperature tolerance in selected crop species being cultivated in marginal climates. PMID:20351019

  4. An expanding universe of circadian networks in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Pruneda-Paz, Jose L; Kay, Steve A

    2010-05-01

    Extensive circadian clock networks regulate almost every biological process in plants. Clock-controlled physiological responses are coupled with daily oscillations in environmental conditions resulting in enhanced fitness and growth vigor. Identification of core clock components and their associated molecular interactions has established the basic network architecture of plant clocks, which consists of multiple interlocked feedback loops. A hierarchical structure of transcriptional feedback overlaid with regulated protein turnover sets the pace of the clock and ultimately drives all clock-controlled processes. Although originally described as linear entities, increasing evidence suggests that many signaling pathways can act as both inputs and outputs within the overall network. Future studies will determine the molecular mechanisms involved in these complex regulatory loops.

  5. Final Report for Regulation of Embryonic Development in Higher Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Harada, John J.

    2013-10-22

    The overall goal of the project was to define the cellular processes that underlie embryo development in plants at a mechanistic level. Our studies focused on a critical transcriptional regulator, Arabidopsis LEAFY COTYLEDON (LEC1), that is necessary and sufficient to induce processes required for embryo development. Because LEC1 regulates lipid accumulation during the maturation phase of embryo development, information about LEC1 may be useful in designing approaches to enhance biofuel production in plants. During the tenure of this project, we determined the molecular mechanisms by which LEC1 acts as a transcription factor in embryos. We also identified genes directly regulated by LEC1 and showed that many of these genes are involved in maturation processes. This information has been useful in dissecting the gene regulatory networks controlling embryo development. Finally, LEC1 is a novel isoform of a transcription factor that is conserved among eukaryotes, and LEC1 is active primarily in seeds. Therefore, we determined that the LEC1-type transcription factors first appeared in lycophytes during land plant evolution. Together, this study provides basic information that has implications for biofuel production.

  6. Regulation of cell division in higher plants. Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Jacobs, Thomas W.

    2000-02-29

    Research in the latter part of the grant period was divided into two parts: (1) expansion of the macromolecular tool kit for studying plant cell division; (2) experiments in which the roles played by plant cell cycle regulators were to be cast in the light of the emerging yeast and animal cell paradigm for molecular control of the mitotic cycle. The first objectives were accomplished to a very satisfactory degree. With regard to the second part of the project, we were driven to change our objectives for two reasons. First, the families of cell cycle control genes that we cloned encoded such closely related members that the prospects for success at raising distinguishing antisera against each were sufficiently dubious as to be impractical. Epitope tagging is not feasible in Pisum sativum, our experimental system, as this species is not realistically transformable. Therefore, differentiating the roles of diverse cyclins and cyclin-dependent kinases was problematic. Secondly, our procedure for generating mitotically synchronized pea root meristems for biochemical studies was far too labor intensive for the proposed experiments. We therefore shifted our objectives to identifying connections between the conserved proteins of the cell cycle engine and factors that interface it with plant physiology and development. In this, we have obtained some very exciting results.

  7. Identification of the alternative terminal oxidase of higher plant mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Elthon, Thomas E.; McIntosh, Lee

    1987-01-01

    In addition to cytochrome oxidase, plant mitochondria have a second terminal oxidase called the alternative oxidase. The alternative oxidase is of great interest in that energy is not conserved when electrons flow through it. The potential energy of the system is thus lost as heat, and, in plants with high levels of the alternative oxidase, this results in thermogenesis. We have purified the alternative oxidase from mitochondria of the thermogenic spadix of Sauromatum guttatum and have identified its polypeptide constituents by using polyclonal antibodies. A 166-fold purification was achieved through a combination of cation-exchange (carboxymethyl-Sepharose) and hydrophobic-interaction (phenyl-Sepharose) chromatography. Polyclonal antibodies raised to the CM-Sepharose fractions readily immunoprecipitated alternative oxidase activity and immunoprecipitated four of the proteins that copurify with the activity. These proteins have apparent molecular masses of 37, 36, 35.5, and 35 kDa. Polyclonal antibodies raised individually to the 37-, 36-, and 35.5- plus 35-kDa proteins cross-reacted with all of these proteins, indicating the presence of common antigenic sites. The 37-kDa protein appears to be constitutive in Sauromatum, whereas expression of the 36- and 35-kDa proteins was correlated with presence of alternative pathway activity. The 35.5-kDa protein appears with loss of alternative pathway activity during senescence, indicating that this protein may be a degradation product of the 36-kDa protein. Binding of anti-36-kDa protein antibodies to total mitochondrial protein blots of five plant species indicated that similar proteins were always present when alternative pathway activity was observed. Images PMID:16593898

  8. Gravitropism in higher plant shoots. I - A role for ethylene

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wheeler, Raymond M.; Salisbury, Frank B.

    1981-01-01

    Two inhibitors of ethylene synthesis, Co(2+) and aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG), and two inhibitors of ethylene action, Ag(+) and CO2, are shown to delay the gravitropic response of cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium L.), tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.), and castor bean (Ricinus communis L.) stems. Gentle shaking on a mechanical shaker does not inhibit the gravitropic response, but vigorous hand shaking for 120 seconds delays the response somewhat. AVG and Ag(+) further delay the response of mechanically stimulated plants. AVG retards the storage of bending energy but not of stimulus. In gravitropism, graviperception may first stimulate ethylene evolution, which may then influence bending directly, or responses involving ethylene could be more indirect.

  9. The cell biology of lignification in higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Barros, Jaime; Serk, Henrik; Granlund, Irene; Pesquet, Edouard

    2015-01-01

    Background Lignin is a polyphenolic polymer that strengthens and waterproofs the cell wall of specialized plant cell types. Lignification is part of the normal differentiation programme and functioning of specific cell types, but can also be triggered as a response to various biotic and abiotic stresses in cells that would not otherwise be lignifying. Scope Cell wall lignification exhibits specific characteristics depending on the cell type being considered. These characteristics include the timing of lignification during cell differentiation, the palette of associated enzymes and substrates, the sub-cellular deposition sites, the monomeric composition and the cellular autonomy for lignin monomer production. This review provides an overview of the current understanding of lignin biosynthesis and polymerization at the cell biology level. Conclusions The lignification process ranges from full autonomy to complete co-operation depending on the cell type. The different roles of lignin for the function of each specific plant cell type are clearly illustrated by the multiple phenotypic defects exhibited by knock-out mutants in lignin synthesis, which may explain why no general mechanism for lignification has yet been defined. The range of phenotypic effects observed include altered xylem sap transport, loss of mechanical support, reduced seed protection and dispersion, and/or increased pest and disease susceptibility. PMID:25878140

  10. Alternative system of succinate oxidation in glyoxysomes of higher plants.

    PubMed

    Igamberdiev, A U; Popov, V N; Falaleeva, M I

    1995-07-03

    Succinate oxidation in scutella of germinating seeds of wheat and maize was investigated. Besides oxidation via succinate dehydrogenase (SDH; EC 1.3.99.1), an alternative path of succinate oxidation insensitive to SDH inhibitors--malonate and thenoyltrifluoroacetone (TTFA)--was revealed. Using isopicnic sucrose gradient it was shown that this path is localized in glyoxysomal membranes. Glyoxysomal succinate oxidase (GSO) converts succinate directly into malate with the production of hydrogen peroxide identified using auxiliary enzymes malate dehydrogenase and peroxidase. GSO is most active during the intensive operation of the glyoxylate cycle (3-5 days of germination). Quinacrine, the inhibitor of flavine-containing oxidases, strongly suppressed the activity of GSO. Km for succinate is 18 mM for GSO from maize scutellum. It is concluded that in scutella of cereal seeds the glyoxysomal succinate oxidation non-linked with ATP synthesis operates.

  11. Can plant biotechnology help break the HIV-malaria link?

    PubMed

    Vamvaka, E; Twyman, R M; Christou, P; Capell, T

    2014-01-01

    The population of sub-Saharan Africa is at risk from multiple, poverty-related endemic diseases. HIV and malaria are the most prevalent, but they disproportionately affect different groups of people, i.e. HIV predominantly affects sexually-active adults whereas malaria has a greater impact on children and pregnant women. Nevertheless, there is a significant geographical and epidemiological overlap which results in bidirectional and synergistic interactions with important consequences for public health. The immunosuppressive effects of HIV increase the risk of infection when individuals are exposed to malaria parasites and also the severity of malaria symptoms. Similarly, acute malaria can induce a temporary increase in the HIV viral load. HIV is associated with a wide range of opportunistic infections that can be misdiagnosed as malaria, resulting in the wasteful misuse of antimalarial drugs and a failure to address the genuine cause of the disease. There is also a cumulative risk of toxicity when antiretroviral and antimalarial drugs are given to the same patients. Synergistic approaches involving the control of malaria as a strategy to fight HIV/AIDS and vice versa are therefore needed in co-endemic areas. Plant biotechnology has emerged as a promising approach to tackle poverty-related diseases because plant-derived drugs and vaccines can be produced inexpensively in developing countries and may be distributed using agricultural infrastructure without the need for a cold chain. Here we explore some of the potential contributions of plant biotechnology and its integration into broader multidisciplinary public health programs to combat the two diseases in developing countries.

  12. Gravitropism in higher plant shoots. V - Changing sensitivity to auxin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salisbury, Frank B.; Gillespie, Linda; Rorabaugh, Patricia

    1988-01-01

    The relationship in plants between the sensitivity to auxin and differential growth and bending was investigated experimentally. Decapitated and marked sunflower hypocotyl sections were immersed in buffered auxin solutions of different concentrations (0, 10 to the -8th, or 0.001 molar) and were photographed at 1/2 hr intervals; the negatives were analyzed with a digitizer/computer to evaluate surface-length changes in terms of Michaelis-Menten enzyme kinetics. It was found that bending decreased with increasing concentration of auxin. Increasing the auxin concentration inhibits the elongation growth of lower surfaces but promotes upper-surface growth, indicating that the lower surfaces have a greater Km sensitivity to applied auxin than the upper surfaces. At optimum auxin levels (maximum growth), the growth of bottom surfaces exceeded that of top surfaces, indicating that bottom tissues had a greater Vmax sensitivity.

  13. Studies of genetic transformation of higher plants using irradiated pollen

    SciTech Connect

    Chyi, Y.S.

    1984-01-01

    Pandey has reported extensively on an unusual genetic phenomenon he called egg transformation. When compatible pollen was treated wth genetically lethal dosage of ..gamma..-radiation (100,000 rad), and used as mentor pollen to overcome selfincompatibility of several Nicotiana species, some genetic characters were found to be transferred from the radiation killed pollen to nonhybrid progeny. Observed transformants were fertile, cytogenetically normal, and had maternal phenotypes except for those specific traits transferred from the donors. Heavily irradiated pollen was believed to discharge its radiation-fragmented DNA (chromatin) into the embryo sac and bring about the transformation of the egg. The frequency of gene transfer was reported to be over 50%, and happened for all three characters Pandey studied - self incompatible specificities, flower color, and pollen color. Plant species studied were tomato, pea, apple, rapeseed, and Nicotiana species, including various stocks from Dr. Pandey. Treatments included pollinations with soley irradiated donor pollen, with a mixture of irradiated donor and normal self pollen, with a mixture of normal donor and self pollen, and double pollinations with irradiated donor pollen and normal self pollen, using different time intervals to separate the two pollinations. A total of 6210 pollinations were made, and 17,522 seedlings representing 87,750 potential transformational events were screened. In no case was an unambiguous transformant recovered. This research was unable to confirm or expand upon the findings of Dr. Pandey, or elucidate the mechanisms underlying such phenomena. Alternative explanations for Pandey's data were postulated. This approach to gene transfer by using irradiated pollen appears to be of little practical use to plant breeders.

  14. Searching for links in the biotic characteristics and abiotic parameters of nine different biogas plants

    PubMed Central

    Walter, Andreas; Knapp, Brigitte A.; Farbmacher, Theresa; Ebner, Christian; Insam, Heribert; Franke‐Whittle, Ingrid H.

    2012-01-01

    Summary To find links between the biotic characteristics and abiotic process parameters in anaerobic digestion systems, the microbial communities of nine full‐scale biogas plants in South Tyrol (Italy) and Vorarlberg (Austria) were investigated using molecular techniques and the physical and chemical properties were monitored. DNA from sludge samples was subjected to microarray hybridization with the ANAEROCHIP microarray and results indicated that sludge samples grouped into two main clusters, dominated either by Methanosarcina or by Methanosaeta, both aceticlastic methanogens. Hydrogenotrophic methanogens were hardly detected or if detected, gave low hybridization signals. Results obtained using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) supported the findings of microarray hybridization. Real‐time PCR targeting Methanosarcina and Methanosaeta was conducted to provide quantitative data on the dominating methanogens. Correlation analysis to determine any links between the microbial communities found by microarray analysis, and the physicochemical parameters investigated was conducted. It was shown that the sludge samples dominated by the genus Methanosarcina were positively correlated with higher concentrations of acetate, whereas sludge samples dominated by representatives of the genus Methanosaeta had lower acetate concentrations. No other correlations between biotic characteristics and abiotic parameters were found. Methanogenic communities in each reactor were highly stable and resilient over the whole year. PMID:22950603

  15. Plasmodesmata without callose and calreticulin in higher plants - open channels for fast symplastic transport?

    PubMed

    Demchenko, Kirill N; Voitsekhovskaja, Olga V; Pawlowski, Katharina

    2014-01-01

    Plasmodesmata (PD) represent membrane-lined channels that link adjacent plant cells across the cell wall. PD of higher plants contain a central tube of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) called desmotubule. Membrane and lumen proteins seem to be able to move through the desmotubule, but most transport processes through PD occur through the cytoplasmic annulus (Brunkard etal., 2013). Calreticulin (CRT), a highly conserved Ca(2+)-binding protein found in all multicellular eukaryotes, predominantly located in the ER, was shown to localize to PD, though not all PD accumulate CRT. In nitrogen-fixing actinorhizal root nodules of the Australian tree Casuarina glauca, the primary walls of infected cells containing the microsymbiont become lignified upon infection. TEM analysis of these nodules showed that during the differentiation of infected cells, PD connecting infected cells, and connecting infected and adjacent uninfected cells, were reduced in number as well as diameter (Schubert etal., 2013). In contrast with PD connecting young infected cells, and most PD connecting mature infected and adjacent uninfected cells, PD connecting mature infected cells did not accumulate CRT. Furthermore, as shown here, these PD were not associated with callose, and based on their diameter, they probably had lost their desmotubules. We speculate that either this is a slow path to PD degradation, or that the loss of callose accumulation and presumably also desmotubules leads to the PD becoming open channels and improves metabolite exchange between cells.

  16. Plant and soil fungal but not soil bacterial communities are linked in long-term fertilized grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassman, Noriko A.; Leite, Marcio F. A.; Pan, Yao; de Hollander, Mattias; van Veen, Johannes A.; Kuramae, Eiko E.

    2016-03-01

    Inorganic fertilization and mowing alter soil factors with subsequent effects–direct and indirect - on above- and below-ground communities. We explored direct and indirect effects of long-term fertilization (N, P, NPK, Liming) and twice yearly mowing on the plant, bacterial and fungal communities and soil factors. We analyzed co-variation using 16S and 18S rRNA genes surveys, and plant frequency and edaphic factors across treatments. The plant and fungal communities were distinct in the NPK and L treatments, while the bacterial communities and soil factors were distinct in the N and L treatments. Plant community diversity and evenness had low diversity in the NPK and high diversity in the liming treatment, while the diversity and evenness of the bacterial and fungal communities did not differ across treatments, except of higher diversity and evenness in the liming treatment for the bacteria. We found significant co-structures between communities based on plant and fungal comparisons but not between plant and bacterial nor bacterial and fungal comparisons. Our results suggested that the plant and fungal communities are more tightly linked than either community with the bacterial community in fertilized soils. We found co-varying plant, bacterial and fungal taxa in different treatments that may indicate ecological interactions.

  17. Plant and soil fungal but not soil bacterial communities are linked in long-term fertilized grassland.

    PubMed

    Cassman, Noriko A; Leite, Marcio F A; Pan, Yao; de Hollander, Mattias; van Veen, Johannes A; Kuramae, Eiko E

    2016-03-29

    Inorganic fertilization and mowing alter soil factors with subsequent effects-direct and indirect - on above- and below-ground communities. We explored direct and indirect effects of long-term fertilization (N, P, NPK, Liming) and twice yearly mowing on the plant, bacterial and fungal communities and soil factors. We analyzed co-variation using 16S and 18S rRNA genes surveys, and plant frequency and edaphic factors across treatments. The plant and fungal communities were distinct in the NPK and L treatments, while the bacterial communities and soil factors were distinct in the N and L treatments. Plant community diversity and evenness had low diversity in the NPK and high diversity in the liming treatment, while the diversity and evenness of the bacterial and fungal communities did not differ across treatments, except of higher diversity and evenness in the liming treatment for the bacteria. We found significant co-structures between communities based on plant and fungal comparisons but not between plant and bacterial nor bacterial and fungal comparisons. Our results suggested that the plant and fungal communities are more tightly linked than either community with the bacterial community in fertilized soils. We found co-varying plant, bacterial and fungal taxa in different treatments that may indicate ecological interactions.

  18. Plant and soil fungal but not soil bacterial communities are linked in long-term fertilized grassland

    PubMed Central

    Cassman, Noriko A.; Leite, Marcio F. A.; Pan, Yao; de Hollander, Mattias; van Veen, Johannes A.; Kuramae, Eiko E.

    2016-01-01

    Inorganic fertilization and mowing alter soil factors with subsequent effects–direct and indirect - on above- and below-ground communities. We explored direct and indirect effects of long-term fertilization (N, P, NPK, Liming) and twice yearly mowing on the plant, bacterial and fungal communities and soil factors. We analyzed co-variation using 16S and 18S rRNA genes surveys, and plant frequency and edaphic factors across treatments. The plant and fungal communities were distinct in the NPK and L treatments, while the bacterial communities and soil factors were distinct in the N and L treatments. Plant community diversity and evenness had low diversity in the NPK and high diversity in the liming treatment, while the diversity and evenness of the bacterial and fungal communities did not differ across treatments, except of higher diversity and evenness in the liming treatment for the bacteria. We found significant co-structures between communities based on plant and fungal comparisons but not between plant and bacterial nor bacterial and fungal comparisons. Our results suggested that the plant and fungal communities are more tightly linked than either community with the bacterial community in fertilized soils. We found co-varying plant, bacterial and fungal taxa in different treatments that may indicate ecological interactions. PMID:27020916

  19. New Horizons: Higher Education Academic Link between King Alfred's College, Winchester and the Universities of Dhaka and Khulna, Bangledesh.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prentki, Tim

    2000-01-01

    Explains the Higher Education Academic link, which promotes Theatre for Development in both the university and non-governmental organization sectors in Bangladesh. Highlights some of the most important and innovative issues which emerged from the link. Describes activities in the university sector which engaged students in practical workshops…

  20. Higher Plants in Space for MELiSSA -Literature Review and Future Directions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zabrodina, Marina; Kittang, Ann-Iren; Coelho, Liz Helena; Karoliussen, Irene; Aase Wolff, Silje; Iversen, Tor-Henning

    The human exploration of space requires the development of closed life support systems to regenerate oxygen, purify water, and produce food. MELiSSA (Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative) is a model system for advanced life support based on different microbial species and higher plants. The main objective of the LiRHiPliSMe (Literature Review of Higher Plants in Space for MELiSSA) project was to elaborate the preliminary roadmap for higher plant research activities for the MELiSSA project Phase 2 (Preliminary Space Experiments). The first task was to establish an understanding of the current knowledge concerning how higher plant will adapt to Moon/Mars physical factors different from Earth with focus on reduced gravity, space radiation, variations in magnetic field and combined effects of these factors. The literature related to how Moon/Mars physical factors can affect genetic processes, growth regulators, development, morphology, water and nutrients transport, gas exchange and metabolism of higher plants during one life cycle were collected. The possible effects of the space environment on the plant role as a food and on the mass balance in a Life Support System that includes a Higher Plant Compartment are reviewed. Based on this literature review there was made an assessment of where new or extended scientific knowledge about space factors effects on higher plant growth and development is needed. The requirements for research activities on higher plants in enclosed life support systems were identified. The required higher plant research activities for MELiSSA phase 2 both on ground and in space were placed in a timescale from the present until higher plants can be grown in closed life support systems on Moon and Mars.

  1. Linking the Weather Generator with Regional Climate Model: Effect of Higher Resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dubrovsky, Martin; Huth, Radan; Farda, Ales; Skalak, Petr

    2014-05-01

    This contribution builds on our last year EGU contribution, which followed two aims: (i) validation of the simulations of the present climate made by the ALADIN-Climate Regional Climate Model (RCM) at 25 km resolution, and (ii) presenting a methodology for linking the parametric weather generator (WG) with RCM output (aiming to calibrate a gridded WG capable of producing realistic synthetic multivariate weather series for weather-ungauged locations). Now we have available new higher-resolution (6.25 km) simulations with the same RCM. The main topic of this contribution is an anser to a following question: What is an effect of using a higher spatial resolution on a quality of simulating the surface weather characteristics? In the first part, the high resolution RCM simulation of the present climate will be validated in terms of selected WG parameters, which are derived from the RCM-simulated surface weather series and compared to those derived from weather series observed in 125 Czech meteorological stations. The set of WG parameters will include statistics of the surface temperature and precipitation series. When comparing the WG parameters from the two sources (RCM vs observations), we interpolate the RCM-based parameters into the station locations while accounting for the effect of altitude. In the second part, we will discuss an effect of using the higher resolution: the results of the validation tests will be compared with those obtained with the lower-resolution RCM. Acknowledgements: The present experiment is made within the frame of projects ALARO-Climate (project P209/11/2405 sponsored by the Czech Science Foundation), WG4VALUE (project LD12029 sponsored by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports of CR) and VALUE (COST ES 1102 action).

  2. Automorphosis of higher plants on a 3-D clinostat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoson, T.; Kamisaka, S.; Yamashita, M.; Masuda, Y.

    On a three-dimensional (3-D) clinostat, various plant organs developed statocytes capable of responding to the gravity vector. The graviresponse of primary roots of garden cress and maize grown on the clinostat was the same as the control roots, whereas that of maize coleoptiles was reduced. When maize seedlings were grown in the presence of 10^-4 M gibberellic acid and kinetin, the graviresponse of both roots and shoots was suppressed. The corresponding suppression of amyloplast development was observed in the clinostatted and the hormone-treated seedlings. Maize roots and shoots showed spontaneous curvatures in different portions on the 3-D clinostat. The hormone treatment did not significantly influence such an automorphic curvature. When the root cap was removed, maize roots did not curve gravitropically. However, the removal suppressed the automorphic curvatures only slightly. On the other hand, the removal of coleoptile tip did not influence its graviresponse, whereas the spontaneous curvature of decapitated coleoptiles on the clinostat was strongly suppressed. Also, cytochalasin B differently affected the gravitropic and the automorphic curvatures of maize roots and shoots. From these results it is concluded that the graviperception and the early processes of signal transmission are unnecessary for automorphoses under simulated microgravity conditions. Moreover, the results support the view that the amyloplasts act as statoliths probably via an interaction with microfilaments.

  3. Molecular insights into Zeaxanthin-dependent quenching in higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Pengqi; Tian, Lijin; Kloz, Miroslav; Croce, Roberta

    2015-01-01

    Photosynthetic organisms protect themselves from high-light stress by dissipating excess absorbed energy as heat in a process called non-photochemical quenching (NPQ). Zeaxanthin is essential for the full development of NPQ, but its role remains debated. The main discussion revolves around two points: where does zeaxanthin bind and does it quench? To answer these questions we have followed the zeaxanthin-dependent quenching from leaves to individual complexes, including supercomplexes. We show that small amounts of zeaxanthin are associated with the complexes, but in contrast to what is generally believed, zeaxanthin binding per se does not cause conformational changes in the complexes and does not induce quenching, not even at low pH. We show that in NPQ conditions zeaxanthin does not exchange for violaxanthin in the internal binding sites of the antennas but is located at the periphery of the complexes. These results together with the observation that the zeaxanthin-dependent quenching is active in isolated membranes, but not in functional supercomplexes, suggests that zeaxanthin is acting in between the complexes, helping to create/participating in a variety of quenching sites. This can explain why none of the antennas appears to be essential for NPQ and the multiple quenching mechanisms that have been observed in plants. PMID:26323786

  4. Molecular biology of Lea genes of higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-07-01

    This report contains our progress to date in determining the function of the D-7 Lea proteins in cotton embryos. We have completely sequenced the D-7 gene and established {ital E. coli} transformants which synthesize reasonable amounts of the D-7 protein. Two-dimensional electrophoresis was required to assay fractions for D-7 protein during purification to homogeneity, since D-7 has no known enzymatic activity, contains no Trp, and little Phe or Tyr, and {ital E. coli} has several proteins of similar molecular weight to D-7. Purified D-7 was used to generate monospecific antibodies which are being used for determination of the cellular distribution of D-7, and also for exact quantitation of D-7 in late-stage cotton embryos. Computerized modelling of D-7 has shown similarities to proteins with a coiled-coil structure, but fitting D-7 to this structure resulted in a violation of the handedness rule. If the pitch of the helix is changed from 3.6 to 3.667, however, a three dimensional structure (not a coiled coil) is generated which has overall energetics of formation nearly as favorable as the traditional {alpha} helix. The driving force for the change in pitch is proposed to result from favorable energetics of dimerization. Preliminary evidence indicates that D-7 does indeed dimerize in solution. Future experiments will determine the exact 3D structure of D-7 and the related protein D-29, as well as test the hypothesis that D-7 and D-29 are involved in mitigating dehydration of embryos and plants through sequestering phosphate or other ions in sufficient quantity to prevent ion precipitation or crystallization. 13 refs., 3 figs. (MHB)

  5. Effects of the Extraterrestrial Environment on Plants: Recommendations for Future Space Experiments for the MELiSSA Higher Plant Compartment

    PubMed Central

    Wolff, Silje A.; Coelho, Liz H.; Karoliussen, Irene; Jost, Ann-Iren Kittang

    2014-01-01

    Due to logistical challenges, long-term human space exploration missions require a life support system capable of regenerating all the essentials for survival. Higher plants can be utilized to provide a continuous supply of fresh food, atmosphere revitalization, and clean water for humans. Plants can adapt to extreme environments on Earth, and model plants have been shown to grow and develop through a full life cycle in microgravity. However, more knowledge about the long term effects of the extraterrestrial environment on plant growth and development is necessary. The European Space Agency (ESA) has developed the Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative (MELiSSA) program to develop a closed regenerative life support system, based on micro-organisms and higher plant processes, with continuous recycling of resources. In this context, a literature review to analyze the impact of the space environments on higher plants, with focus on gravity levels, magnetic fields and radiation, has been performed. This communication presents a roadmap giving directions for future scientific activities within space plant cultivation. The roadmap aims to identify the research activities required before higher plants can be included in regenerative life support systems in space. PMID:25370192

  6. Effects of the Extraterrestrial Environment on Plants: Recommendations for Future Space Experiments for the MELiSSA Higher Plant Compartment.

    PubMed

    Wolff, Silje A; Coelho, Liz H; Karoliussen, Irene; Jost, Ann-Iren Kittang

    2014-05-05

    Due to logistical challenges, long-term human space exploration missions require a life support system capable of regenerating all the essentials for survival. Higher plants can be utilized to provide a continuous supply of fresh food, atmosphere revitalization, and clean water for humans. Plants can adapt to extreme environments on Earth, and model plants have been shown to grow and develop through a full life cycle in microgravity. However, more knowledge about the long term effects of the extraterrestrial environment on plant growth and development is necessary. The European Space Agency (ESA) has developed the Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative (MELiSSA) program to develop a closed regenerative life support system, based on micro-organisms and higher plant processes, with continuous recycling of resources. In this context, a literature review to analyze the impact of the space environments on higher plants, with focus on gravity levels, magnetic fields and radiation, has been performed. This communication presents a roadmap giving directions for future scientific activities within space plant cultivation. The roadmap aims to identify the research activities required before higher plants can be included in regenerative life support systems in space.

  7. Links between plant and rhizoplane bacterial communities in grassland soils, characterized using molecular techniques.

    PubMed

    Nunan, Naoise; Daniell, Timothy J; Singh, Brajesh K; Papert, Artemis; McNicol, James W; Prosser, James I

    2005-11-01

    Molecular analysis of grassland rhizosphere soil has demonstrated complex and diverse bacterial communities, with resultant difficulties in detecting links between plant and bacterial communities. These studies have, however, analyzed "bulk" rhizosphere soil, rather than rhizoplane communities, which interact most closely with plants through utilization of root exudates. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that plant species was a major driver for bacterial rhizoplane community composition on individual plant roots. DNA extracted from individual roots was used to determine plant identity, by analysis of the plastid tRNA leucine (trnL) UAA gene intron, and plant-related bacterial communities. Bacterial communities were characterized by analysis of PCR-amplified 16S rRNA genes using two fingerprinting methods: terminal restriction fragment length polymorphisms (T-RFLP) and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). Links between plant and bacterial rhizoplane communities could not be detected by visual examination of T-RFLP patterns or DGGE banding profiles. Statistical analysis of fingerprint patterns did not reveal a relationship between bacterial community composition and plant species but did demonstrate an influence of plant community composition. The data also indicated that topography and other, uncharacterized, environmental factors are important in driving bacterial community composition in grassland soils. T-RFLP had greater potential resolving power than DGGE, but findings from the two methods were not significantly different.

  8. How the Plant Temperature Links to the Air Temperature in the Desert Plant Artemisia ordosica.

    PubMed

    Yu, Ming-Han; Ding, Guo-Dong; Gao, Guang-Lei; Sun, Bao-Ping; Zhao, Yuan-Yuan; Wan, Li; Wang, De-Ying; Gui, Zi-Yang

    2015-01-01

    Plant temperature (Tp) is an important indicator of plant health. To determine the dynamics of plant temperature and self-cooling ability of the plant, we measured Tp in Artemisia ordosica in July, in the Mu Us Desert of Northwest China. Related factors were also monitored to investigate their effects on Tp, including environmental factors, such as air temperature (Ta), relative humidity, wind speed; and physiological factors, such as leaf water potential, sap flow, and water content. The results indicate that: 1) Tp generally changes in conjunction with Ta mainly, and varies with height and among the plant organs. Tp in the young branches is most constant, while it is the most sensitive in the leaves. 2) Correlations between Tp and environmental factors show that Tp is affected mainly by Ta. 3) The self-cooling ability of the plant was effective by midday, with Tp being lower than Ta. 4) Increasing sap flow and leaf water potential showed that transpiration formed part of the mechanism that supported self-cooling. Increased in water conductance and specific heat at midday may be additional factors that contribute to plant cooling ability. Therefore, our results confirmed plant self-cooling ability. The response to high temperatures is regulated by both transpiration speed and an increase in stem water conductance. This study provides quantitative data for plant management in terms of temperature control. Moreover, our findings will assist species selection with taking plant temperature as an index.

  9. Isotopic discrimination of zinc during root-uptake and cellular incorporation in higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mason, T. F.; Weiss, D. J.; Coles, B. J.; Horstwood, M.; Parrish, R. R.; Zhao, F. J.; Kirk, G. J.

    2003-04-01

    Introduction: Isotopic variability of terrestrial zinc offers a unique tool for studying the geochemical and biochemical cycling of zinc through natural ecosystems. However, to realise this potential, the mechanisms controlling the isotopic composition of zinc during geosphere-biosphere interactions must first be understood. The uptake of zinc by plants involves a variety of abiotic and biochemical reactions, and can provide insights into the types of processes that may fractionate zinc isotopes within living systems. We therefore present an experimental study to quantify if and how zinc isotopes are fractionated during uptake in higher plants. Methodology: Two experimental approaches were taken: (1) a hydroponic study in which rice, lettuce, and tomato cultivars were grown in one of two nutrient solutions (a HEDTA + NTA buffered system, and an EDTA buffered system), and (2) a field-based study in which rice plants were grown in experimental paddy fields under both zinc-sufficient and zinc-deficient conditions. Upon harvest, roots, shoots, nutrient solutions and soils were acid digested, and matrix components were removed from the zinc fraction using anion exchange procedures. For soils the 'bioavailble' zinc fraction was abstracted using a 1 N HCl leaching step. Zinc isotopic compositions were determined on a ThermoElemental Axiom MC-ICP-MS, using copper as an internal reference to correct for mass discrimination effects. Combined measurement errors based on repeated analyses of ultra-pure standards and plant reference materials were <0.035 ppm per atomic mass unit (pamu) (2σ) for 66Zn/64Zn measurements. Results: Under hydroponic condisions, all three plant species exhibit a similar pattern of zinc isotopic discrimination, with a small enrichment from nutrient solution to root of +0.04 to +0.09 ppm pamu, followed by an isotopic depletion from root to shoot of -0.13 to -0.26 ppm pamu. While the same trend is observed with the HEDTA + NTA and EDTA nutrient

  10. Biochemical hydrogen isotope fractionation during biosynthesis in higher plants reflects carbon metabolism of the plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cormier, Marc-André; Kahmen, Ansgar

    2015-04-01

    Compound-specific isotope analyses of plant material are frequently applied to understand the response of plants to the environmental changes. As it is generally assume that the main factors controlling δ2H values in plants are the plant's source water and evaporative deuterium enrichment of leaf water, hydrogen isotope analyses of plant material are mainly applied regarding hydrological conditions at different time scales. However, only few studies have directly addressed the variability of the biochemical hydrogen isotope fractionation occurring during biosynthesis of organic compounds (ɛbio), accounting also for a large part in the δ2H values of plants but generally assumed to be constant. Here we present the results from a climate-controlled growth chambers experiment where tested the sensitivity of ɛbio to different light treatments. The different light treatments were applied to induce different metabolic status (autotrophic vs. heterotrophic) in 9 different plant species that we grew from large storage organs (e.g. tubers or roots). The results show a systematic ɛbio shift (up to 80 ) between the different light treatments for different compounds (i.e. long chain n-alkanes and cellulose). We suggest that this shift is due to the different NADPH pools used by the plants to build up the compounds from stored carbohydrates in heterotrophic or autotrophic conditions. Our results have important implications for the calibration and interpretation of sedimentary and tree rings records in geological studies. In addition, as the δ2H values reflect also strongly the carbon metabolism of the plant, our findings support the idea of δ2H values as an interesting proxy for plant physiological studies.

  11. [Mechanism of gravi-sensing and -transduction in gravitropism of higher plants].

    PubMed

    Morita, Miyo Terao; Tasaka, Masao

    2003-08-01

    In higher plants, some organs such as roots, hypocotyls, and stems, can sense the direction of gravity to regulate their orientation. Gravitropic response is composed of four steps; 1. gravity sensing and conversion of physical stimuli to biochemical signals, 2. intracellular signal transduction in gravity sensing cells, 3. signal transmitting to responding tissues, 4. differential growth of organs. Here we focus on the former two steps. Recent studies using modern technique have gradually unveiled early events and mechanism of gravitropic response. Genetic approach provided evidences that strongly support the classical theory for gravity sensing (step 1). Computational analysis suggested the existence of another gravity sensing mechanism in roots. Spatial and temporal ion imaging in living organs in real time provided information on step 2. In addition, reverse genetic approach suggested asymmetrical intracellular distribution of auxin transporter [correction of transpoter] is a possible link between step 2 and 3. However, molecular basis of the signaling mechanism remains unknown. We believe extensive molecular genetic approach combined with recent techniques cited here shed the light to this ambiguous area of research.

  12. The comet assay in higher terrestrial plant model: Review and evolutionary trends.

    PubMed

    Lanier, Caroline; Manier, Nicolas; Cuny, Damien; Deram, Annabelle

    2015-12-01

    The comet assay is a sensitive technique for the measurement of DNA damage in individual cells. Although it has been primarily applied to animal cells, its adaptation to higher plant tissues significantly extends the utility of plants for environmental genotoxicity research. The present review focuses on 101 key publications and discusses protocols and evolutionary trends specific to higher plants. General consensus validates the use of the percentage of DNA found in the tail, the alkaline version of the test and root study. The comet protocol has proved its effectiveness and its adaptability for cultivated plant models. Its transposition in wild plants thus appears as a logical evolution. However, certain aspects of the protocol can be improved, namely through the systematic use of positive controls and increasing the number of nuclei read. These optimizations will permit the increase in the performance of this test, namely when interpreting mechanistic and physiological phenomena.

  13. Higher-capacity communication links based on two-mode phase-sensitive amplifiers.

    PubMed

    McKinstrie, C J; Alic, N; Tong, Z; Karlsson, M

    2011-06-20

    Optical communication links are usually made with erbium-doped fiber amplifiers, which amplify the signal waves in a phase-insensitive (PI) manner. They can also be made with parametric fiber amplifiers, in which the signal waves interact with idler waves. If information is transmitted using only the signals, parametric amplifiers are PI and their noise figures are comparable to those of erbium amplifiers. However, transmitting correlated information in the signals and idlers, or copying the signals prior to transmission, allows parametric amplifiers to be phase-sensitive (PS), which lowers their noise figures. The information capacities of two-mode PS links exceed those of the corresponding PI links by 2 b/s-Hz.

  14. Higher Education Funding Reform and University-Industry Links in Developing Countries: The Case of Thailand

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schiller, Daniel; Liefner, Ingo

    2007-01-01

    Most investigations into the effects of funding changes on higher education systems have been carried out in developed economies. This article focuses on the Thai higher education system, applying theoretical arguments and empirical analyses to the case of a newly industrialising country. One goal of the Thai higher education funding reform is to…

  15. Higher Education in Scotland: Differentiation and Diversion? The Impact of College-University Progression Links

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gallacher, Jim

    2014-01-01

    This paper addresses the issue of the impact of expansion and differentiation on widening access to higher education. In particular, it considers the impact of the growing importance of full-time short-cycle higher education in Scotland's colleges of further and higher education, the progression pathways which have now been established from these…

  16. Links between plant and fungal communities across a deforestation chronosequence in the Amazon rainforest

    PubMed Central

    Mueller, Rebecca C; Paula, Fabiana S; Mirza, Babur S; Rodrigues, Jorge LM; Nüsslein, Klaus; Bohannan, Brendan JM

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the interactions among microbial communities, plant communities and soil properties following deforestation could provide insights into the long-term effects of land-use change on ecosystem functions, and may help identify approaches that promote the recovery of degraded sites. We combined high-throughput sequencing of fungal rDNA and molecular barcoding of plant roots to estimate fungal and plant community composition in soil sampled across a chronosequence of deforestation. We found significant effects of land-use change on fungal community composition, which was more closely correlated to plant community composition than to changes in soil properties or geographic distance, providing evidence for strong links between above- and below-ground communities in tropical forests. PMID:24451208

  17. Links between plant and fungal communities across a deforestation chronosequence in the Amazon rainforest.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Rebecca C; Paula, Fabiana S; Mirza, Babur S; Rodrigues, Jorge L M; Nüsslein, Klaus; Bohannan, Brendan J M

    2014-07-01

    Understanding the interactions among microbial communities, plant communities and soil properties following deforestation could provide insights into the long-term effects of land-use change on ecosystem functions, and may help identify approaches that promote the recovery of degraded sites. We combined high-throughput sequencing of fungal rDNA and molecular barcoding of plant roots to estimate fungal and plant community composition in soil sampled across a chronosequence of deforestation. We found significant effects of land-use change on fungal community composition, which was more closely correlated to plant community composition than to changes in soil properties or geographic distance, providing evidence for strong links between above- and below-ground communities in tropical forests.

  18. The Role of Higher Education in Linking Arts, Culture, and Economic Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steinkamp, Judith S.

    2004-01-01

    In the knowledge economy, colleges and universities are realigning academic initiatives to link more closely with regional needs. They are unique catalysts for forming community alliances to focus on issues of economic development, neighborhood revitalization, and cultural tourism. In partnership with business, municipalities, and cultural…

  19. Is there a missing link? Effects of root herbivory on plant-pollinator interactions and reproductive output in a monocarpic species.

    PubMed

    Ghyselen, C; Bonte, D; Brys, R

    2016-01-01

    Herbivores can have a major influence on plant fitness. The direct impact of herbivory on plant reproductive output has long been studied, and recently also indirect effects of herbivory on plant traits and pollinator attraction have received increasing attention. However, the link between these direct and indirect effects has seldom been studied. In this study, we investigated effects of root herbivory on plant and floral traits, pollination success and reproductive outcome in the monocarpic perennial Cynoglossum officinale. We exposed 119 C. officinale plants to a range of root herbivore damage by its specialist herbivore Mogulones cruciger. We assessed the effect of herbivory on several plant traits, pollinator foraging behaviour and reproductive output, and to elucidate the link between these last two we also quantified pollen deposition and pollen tube growth and applied a pollination experiment to test whether seed set was pollen-limited. Larval root herbivory induced significant changes in plant traits and had a negative impact on pollinator visitation. Infested plants were reduced in size, had fewer flowers and received fewer pollinator visits at plant and flower level than non-infested plants. Also, seed set was negatively affected by root herbivory, but this could not be attributed to pollen limitation since neither stigmatic pollen loads and pollen tube growth nor the results of the hand-pollination experiment differed between infested and non-infested plants. Our observations demonstrate that although herbivory may induce significant changes in flowering behaviour and resulting plant-pollinator interactions, it does not necessarily translate into higher rates of pollen limitation. The observed reductions in reproductive output following infection can mainly be attributed to higher resource limitation compared to non-infested plants.

  20. Advanced life support systems in lunar and Martian environments utilizing a higher plant based engineering paradigm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chamberland, Dennis

    1992-01-01

    The paper describes a higher-plant-based engineering paradigm for advanced life support in a Controlled Ecological Life Support System (CELSS) on the surface of the moon or Mars, called the CELSS Breadboard Project, designed at John F. Kennedy Space Center. Such a higher-plant-based system would use the plants for a direct food source, gas exchange, water reclamation, and plant residuals in a complex biological resource recovery scheme. The CELSS Breadboard Project utilizes a 'breadboard' approach of developing independent systems that are evaluated autonomously and are later interconnected. Such a scheme will enable evaluation of life support system methodologies tested for their efficiency in a life support system for habitats on the moon or Mars.

  1. Customer Orientation in Higher Education: The Missing Link in International Student Recruitment? A Relationship Marketing Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vauterin, Johanna Julia; Linnanen, Lassi; Marttila, Esa

    2011-01-01

    This paper suggests that the service mindset of academia needs attention to ensure that the potential of university-industry linkages for creating value is used strategically in building advantage in the increasingly competitive market for international higher education. Universities should clearly articulate the value of the higher education-…

  2. Growth and development in inert non-aqueous liquids. [of higher plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siegel, S. M.

    1974-01-01

    A preview is presented of the survival and growth capabilities of higher plants in non-aqueous, inert liquids. The two media which were used are mineral (white) oil and fluorochemical inert liquid FC-75. Both liquids dissolve oxygen and carbon dioxide readily, but are insoluble in water. Consequently, plants submerged in these liquids are capable of gas exchange with the atmosphere, but possess a water impermeable coating the dimensions of which are determined by the size of the liquid holding container. In a sense, growing plants in a tank of mineral oil imparts on them a cuticle. Plants plus prescribed volumes of water were innoculated into mineral oil. Organisms with minimal water supplied could then be observed. Also, submersed plants covered with an oil slick were shown to be capable of growth in dessicating atmospheres.

  3. Voltage-dependent calcium-permeable channels in the plasma membrane of a higher plant cell.

    PubMed Central

    Thuleau, P; Ward, J M; Ranjeva, R; Schroeder, J I

    1994-01-01

    Numerous biological assays and pharmacological studies on various higher plant tissues have led to the suggestion that voltage-dependent plasma membrane Ca2+ channels play prominent roles in initiating signal transduction processes during plant growth and development. However, to date no direct evidence has been obtained for the existence of such depolarization-activated Ca2+ channels in the plasma membrane of higher plant cells. Carrot suspension cells (Daucus carota L.) provide a well-suited system to determine whether voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels are present in the plasma membrane of higher plants and to characterize the properties of putative Ca2+ channels. It is known that both depolarization, caused by raising extracellular K+, and exposure to fungal toxins or oligogalacturonides induce Ca2+ influx into carrot cells. By direct application of patch-clamp techniques to isolated carrot protoplasts, we show here that depolarization of the plasma membrane positive to -135 mV activates Ca(2+)-permeable channels. These voltage-dependent ion channels were more permeable to Ca2+ than K+, while displaying large permeabilities to Ba2+ and Mg2+ ions. Ca(2+)-permeable channels showed slow and reversible inactivation. The single-channel conductance was 13 pS in 40 mM CaCl2. These data provide direct evidence for the existence of voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels in the plasma membrane of a higher plant cell and point to physiological mechanisms for plant Ca2+ channel regulation. The depolarization-activated Ca(2+)-permeable channels identified here could constitute a regulated pathway for Ca2+ influx in response to physiologically occurring stimulus-induced depolarizations in higher plant cells. PMID:8039493

  4. Root biomass and exudates link plant diversity with soil bacterial and fungal biomass.

    PubMed

    Eisenhauer, Nico; Lanoue, Arnaud; Strecker, Tanja; Scheu, Stefan; Steinauer, Katja; Thakur, Madhav P; Mommer, Liesje

    2017-04-04

    Plant diversity has been shown to determine the composition and functioning of soil biota. Although root-derived organic inputs are discussed as the main drivers of soil communities, experimental evidence is scarce. While there is some evidence that higher root biomass at high plant diversity increases substrate availability for soil biota, several studies have speculated that the quantity and diversity of root inputs into the soil, i.e. though root exudates, drive plant diversity effects on soil biota. Here we used a microcosm experiment to study the role of plant species richness on the biomass of soil bacteria and fungi as well as fungal-to-bacterial ratio via root biomass and root exudates. Plant diversity significantly increased shoot biomass, root biomass, the amount of root exudates, bacterial biomass, and fungal biomass. Fungal biomass increased most with increasing plant diversity resulting in a significant shift in the fungal-to-bacterial biomass ratio at high plant diversity. Fungal biomass increased significantly with plant diversity-induced increases in root biomass and the amount of root exudates. These results suggest that plant diversity enhances soil microbial biomass, particularly soil fungi, by increasing root-derived organic inputs.

  5. Root biomass and exudates link plant diversity with soil bacterial and fungal biomass

    PubMed Central

    Eisenhauer, Nico; Lanoue, Arnaud; Strecker, Tanja; Scheu, Stefan; Steinauer, Katja; Thakur, Madhav P.; Mommer, Liesje

    2017-01-01

    Plant diversity has been shown to determine the composition and functioning of soil biota. Although root-derived organic inputs are discussed as the main drivers of soil communities, experimental evidence is scarce. While there is some evidence that higher root biomass at high plant diversity increases substrate availability for soil biota, several studies have speculated that the quantity and diversity of root inputs into the soil, i.e. though root exudates, drive plant diversity effects on soil biota. Here we used a microcosm experiment to study the role of plant species richness on the biomass of soil bacteria and fungi as well as fungal-to-bacterial ratio via root biomass and root exudates. Plant diversity significantly increased shoot biomass, root biomass, the amount of root exudates, bacterial biomass, and fungal biomass. Fungal biomass increased most with increasing plant diversity resulting in a significant shift in the fungal-to-bacterial biomass ratio at high plant diversity. Fungal biomass increased significantly with plant diversity-induced increases in root biomass and the amount of root exudates. These results suggest that plant diversity enhances soil microbial biomass, particularly soil fungi, by increasing root-derived organic inputs. PMID:28374800

  6. [Possibility of using higher plants in a life-support system on the moon].

    PubMed

    Terskov, I A; Lisovskiĭ, G M; Ushakova, S A; Parshina, O V; Moiseenko, L P

    1978-01-01

    The paper discusses the possibility of repeated termination of plant vegetation by prolonged darkness approximating the lunar night. This may be helpful for the incorporation of higher plants into the life support system of lunar bases, the solar light being used for illumination. In this connection vegetables (beet Bordeaux, turnip Petrovskaya, carrot Chantanet, dill, radish Virovsky white) and wheat (variety Sonora) were cultivated during the lunar light-dark cycle (i. e. 15 day light: 15 day dark). The experiments demonstrated that traditional plant products can be obtained under the conditions of lunar photoperiod. Grain of wheat grown during the lunar photoperiod were tested as seed material for further cultivation under similar conditions.

  7. Penicillinase-based enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for the detection of plant viruses.

    PubMed

    Sudarshana, M R; Reddy, D V

    1989-10-01

    A penicillinase (PNC)-based, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was standardized to detect maize mosaic virus (MMV) in sorghum leaf extracts, peanut mottle virus (PMV) in pea leaf extracts, and tomato spotted wilt virus (TSWV) in peanut leaf extracts. Rabbit Fc-specific antibodies were conjugated with PNC by a single step glutaraldehyde bridge. Among several indicators tested, bromothymol blue (BTB) was found suitable for measuring PNC activity under simulated conditions. Two reagents, starch-iodine complex (SIC) and a mixed pH indicator, containing bromocresol purple and BTB (2:1) used earlier for the PNC-based ELISA, were compared with BTB for utilization in the PNC-based ELISA. SIC gave a slightly higher virus titre than BTB or the mixed pH indicator, but it often gave nonspecific reactions. Sodium or potassium salts of penicillin-G at 0.5-1.0 mg/ml and BTB at 0.2 mg/ml were found to be suitable as substrate-indicator mixture for PNC-based ELISA. The sensitivity of the PNC system was comparable to those of the alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and horseradish peroxidase (HRP) systems in detecting MMV, PMV, and TSWV. The PNC conjugate could be used at a greater dilution than those of the ALP and HRP conjugates and the BTB substrate mixture was stable for at least 3 weeks at 4 degrees C. Penicillin is readily available in developing countries, and at a substantially lower cost than p-nitrophenyl phosphate, the commonly used substrate for ALP in the plate ELISA. Thus the PNC-based ELISA provides a less expensive means for assaying plant viruses by ELISA.

  8. Characterization and dynamics of cytoplasmic F-actin in higher plant endosperm cells during interphase, mitosis, and cytokinesis

    PubMed Central

    1987-01-01

    We have identified an F-actin cytoskeletal network that remains throughout interphase, mitosis, and cytokinesis of higher plant endosperm cells. Fluorescent labeling was obtained using actin monoclonal antibodies and/or rhodamine-phalloidin. Video-enhanced microscopy and ultrastructural observations of immunogold-labeled preparations illustrated microfilament-microtubule co-distribution and interactions. Actin was also identified in cell crude extract with Western blotting. During interphase, microfilament and microtubule arrays formed two distinct networks that intermingled. At the onset of mitosis, when microtubules rearranged into the mitotic spindle, microfilaments were redistributed to the cell cortex, while few microfilaments remained in the spindle. During mitosis, the cortical actin network remained as an elastic cage around the mitotic apparatus and was stretched parallel to the spindle axis during poleward movement of chromosomes. This suggested the presence of dynamic cross-links that rearrange when they are submitted to slow and regular mitotic forces. At the poles, the regular network is maintained. After midanaphase, new, short microfilaments invaded the equator when interzonal vesicles were transported along the phragmoplast microtubules. Colchicine did not affect actin distribution, and cytochalasin B or D did not inhibit chromosome transport. Our data on endosperm cells suggested that plant cytoplasmic actin has an important role in the cell cortex integrity and in the structural dynamics of the poorly understood cytoplasm- mitotic spindle interface. F-actin may contribute to the regulatory mechanisms of microtubule-dependent or guided transport of vesicles during mitosis and cytokinesis in higher plant cells. PMID:3680376

  9. Aquatic food production modules in bioregenerative life support systems based on higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bluem, V.; Paris, F.

    Most bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) are based on gravitropic higher plants which exhibit growth and seed generation disturbances in microgravity. Even when used for a lunar or martian base the reduced gravity may induce a decreased productivity in comparison to Earth. Therefore, the implementation of aquatic biomass production modules in higher plant and/or hybrid BLSS may compensate for this and offer, in addition, the possibility to produce animal protein for human nutrition. It was shown on the SLS-89 and SLS-90 space shuttle missions with the C.E.B.A.S.-MINI MODULE that the edible non gravitropic rootless higher aquatic plant Ceratophyllum demeresum exhibits an undisturbed high biomass production rate in space and that the teleost fish species, Xiphophorus helleri, adapts rapidly to space conditions without loss of its normal reproductive functions. Based on these findings a series of ground-based aquatic food production systems were developed which are disposed for utilization in space. These are plant production bioreactors for the species mentioned above and another suitable candidate, the lemnacean (duckweed) species, Wolffia arrhiza. Moreover, combined intensive aquaculture systems with a closed food loop between herbivorous fishes and aquatic and land plants are being developed which may be suitable for integration into a BLSS of higher complexity.

  10. Aquatic food production modules in bioregenerative life support systems based on higher plants.

    PubMed

    Bluem, V; Paris, F

    2001-01-01

    Most bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) are based on gravitropic higher plants which exhibit growth and seed generation disturbances in microgravity. Even when used for a lunar or martian base the reduced gravity may induce a decreased productivity in comparison to Earth. Therefore, the implementation of aquatic biomass production modules in higher plant and/or hybrid BLSS may compensate for this and offer, in addition, the possibility to produce animal protein for human nutrition. It was shown on the SLS-89 and SLS-90 space shuttle missions with the C.E.B.A.S.-MINI MODULE that the edible non gravitropic rootless higher aquatic plant Ceratophyllum demeresum exhibits an undisturbed high biomass production rate in space and that the teleost fish species, Xiphophorus helleri, adapts rapidly to space conditions without loss of its normal reproductive functions. Based on these findings a series of ground-based aquatic food production systems were developed which are disposed for utilization in space. These are plant production bioreactors for the species mentioned above and another suitable candidate, the lemnacean (duckweed) species, Wolffia arrhiza. Moreover, combined intensive aquaculture systems with a closed food loop between herbivorous fishes and aquatic and land plants are being developed which may be suitable for integration into a BLSS of higher complexity. Grant numbers: WS50WB9319-3, IVA1216-00588.

  11. Evolution of leaf-form in land plants linked to atmospheric CO2 decline in the Late Palaeozoic era.

    PubMed

    Beerling, D J; Osborne, C P; Chaloner, W G

    2001-03-15

    The widespread appearance of megaphyll leaves, with their branched veins and planate form, did not occur until the close of the Devonian period at about 360 Myr ago. This happened about 40 Myr after simple leafless vascular plants first colonized the land in the Late Silurian/Early Devonian, but the reason for the slow emergence of this common feature of present-day plants is presently unresolved. Here we show, in a series of quantitative analyses using fossil leaf characters and biophysical principles, that the delay was causally linked with a 90% drop in atmospheric pCO2 during the Late Palaeozoic era. In contrast to simulations for a typical Early Devonian land plant, possessing few stomata on leafless stems, those for a planate leaf with the same stomatal characteristics indicate that it would have suffered lethal overheating, because of greater interception of solar energy and low transpiration. When planate leaves first appeared in the Late Devonian and subsequently diversified in the Carboniferous period, they possessed substantially higher stomatal densities. This observation is consistent with the effects of the pCO2 on stomatal development and suggests that the evolution of planate leaves could only have occurred after an increase in stomatal density, allowing higher transpiration rates that were sufficient to maintain cool and viable leaf temperatures.

  12. Linking Wildfire and Climate as Drivers of Plant Species and Community-level Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newingham, B. A.; Hudak, A. T.; Bright, B. C.

    2015-12-01

    Plant species distributions and community shifts after fire are affected by burn severity, elevation, aspect, and climate. However, little empirical data exists on long-term (decadal) recovery after fire across these interacting factors, limiting understanding of fire regime characteristics and climate in post-fire community trajectories. We examined plant species and community responses a decade after fire across five fires in ponderosa pine, dry mixed coniferous, and moist mixed coniferous forests across the western USA. Using field data, we determined changes in plant communities one and ten years post-fire across gradients of burn severity, elevation, and aspect. Existing published work has shown that plant species distributions can be accurately predicted from physiologically relevant climate variables using non-parametric Random Forests models; such models have also been linked to projected climate profiles in 2030, 2060, and 2090 generated from three commonly used general circulation models (GCMs). We explore the possibility that fire and climate are coupled drivers affecting plant species distributions. Climate change may not manifest as a slow shift in plant species distributions, but as sudden, localized events tied to changing fire and other disturbance regimes.

  13. The Arabidopsis TOR kinase links plant growth, yield, stress resistance and mRNA translation.

    PubMed

    Deprost, Dorothée; Yao, Lei; Sormani, Rodnay; Moreau, Manon; Leterreux, Guillaume; Nicolaï, Maryse; Bedu, Magali; Robaglia, Christophe; Meyer, Christian

    2007-09-01

    Plants, unlike animals, have plastic organ growth that is largely dependent on environmental information. However, so far, little is known about how this information is perceived and transduced into coherent growth and developmental decisions. Here, we report that the growth of Arabidopsis is positively correlated with the level of expression of the TARGET OF RAPAMYCIN (TOR) kinase. Diminished or augmented expression of the AtTOR gene results in a dose-dependent decrease or increase, respectively, in organ and cell size, seed production and resistance to osmotic stress. Strong downregulation of AtTOR expression by inducible RNA interference also leads to a post-germinative halt in growth and development, which phenocopies the action of the plant hormone abscisic acid, to an early senescence and to a reduction in the amount of translated messenger RNA. Thus, we propose that the AtTOR kinase is one of the contributors to the link between environmental cues and growth processes in plants.

  14. Physiology and toxicology of hormone-disrupting chemicals in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Couée, Ivan; Serra, Anne-Antonella; Ramel, Fanny; Gouesbet, Gwenola; Sulmon, Cécile

    2013-06-01

    Higher plants are exposed to natural environmental organic chemicals, associated with plant-environment interactions, and xenobiotic environmental organic chemicals, associated with anthropogenic activities. The effects of these chemicals result not only from interaction with metabolic targets, but also from interaction with the complex regulatory networks of hormone signaling. Purpose-designed plant hormone analogues thus show extensive signaling effects on gene regulation and are as such important for understanding plant hormone mechanisms and for manipulating plant growth and development. Some natural environmental chemicals also act on plants through interference with the perception and transduction of endogenous hormone signals. In a number of cases, bioactive xenobiotics, including herbicides that have been designed to affect specific metabolic targets, show extensive gene regulation effects, which are more in accordance with signaling effects than with consequences of metabolic effects. Some of these effects could be due to structural analogies with plant hormones or to interference with hormone metabolism, thus resulting in situations of hormone disruption similar to animal cell endocrine disruption by xenobiotics. These hormone-disrupting effects can be superimposed on parallel metabolic effects, thus indicating that toxicological characterisation of xenobiotics must take into consideration the whole range of signaling and metabolic effects. Hormone-disruptive signaling effects probably predominate when xenobiotic concentrations are low, as occurs in situations of residual low-level pollutions. These hormone-disruptive effects in plants may thus be of importance for understanding cryptic effects of low-dosage xenobiotics, as well as the interactive effects of mixtures of xenobiotic pollutants.

  15. Space and time diversity in indoor wireless optical links achieving higher data rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alqudah, Yazan A.

    2013-02-01

    Multispot diffusing configuration (MSDC) in optical wireless links provide uniform optical power needed for multiaccess and spatial dependence that can be used to allow space diversity techniques over the link. The spatial channels are furnished in MSDC through utilizing multibeam transmitter that produces spatially confined diffusing spots, and a multibranch receiver with small enough branch field-of-view (FOV) to restrict the number of diffusing spots within its FOV. Here, we study different encoding techniques that use space and time diversity to reduce the bit error rate. An improved technique, constellation rotation, is proposed for pulse amplitude modulated (PAM) to increase the Euclidian distance between signal points, and thus reduce bit error. Our study shows that when a cap is placed on the amount of power allocated per channel, the performance of the improved 4-PAM using three spatial channels and soft binary decision provide the optimal performance. When the power allocated per user is restricted, the best performance is obtained through soft binary decision and by using symbols identified by their level and spatial channel to carry 2 bits per signal level-channel.

  16. Organic Acids: The Pools of Fixed Carbon Involved in Redox Regulation and Energy Balance in Higher Plants.

    PubMed

    Igamberdiev, Abir U; Eprintsev, Alexander T

    2016-01-01

    Organic acids are synthesized in plants as a result of the incomplete oxidation of photosynthetic products and represent the stored pools of fixed carbon accumulated due to different transient times of conversion of carbon compounds in metabolic pathways. When redox level in the cell increases, e.g., in conditions of active photosynthesis, the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle in mitochondria is transformed to a partial cycle supplying citrate for the synthesis of 2-oxoglutarate and glutamate (citrate valve), while malate is accumulated and participates in the redox balance in different cell compartments (via malate valve). This results in malate and citrate frequently being the most accumulated acids in plants. However, the intensity of reactions linked to the conversion of these compounds can cause preferential accumulation of other organic acids, e.g., fumarate or isocitrate, in higher concentrations than malate and citrate. The secondary reactions, associated with the central metabolic pathways, in particularly with the TCA cycle, result in accumulation of other organic acids that are derived from the intermediates of the cycle. They form the additional pools of fixed carbon and stabilize the TCA cycle. Trans-aconitate is formed from citrate or cis-aconitate, accumulation of hydroxycitrate can be linked to metabolism of 2-oxoglutarate, while 4-hydroxy-2-oxoglutarate can be formed from pyruvate and glyoxylate. Glyoxylate, a product of either glycolate oxidase or isocitrate lyase, can be converted to oxalate. Malonate is accumulated at high concentrations in legume plants. Organic acids play a role in plants in providing redox equilibrium, supporting ionic gradients on membranes, and acidification of the extracellular medium.

  17. Organic Acids: The Pools of Fixed Carbon Involved in Redox Regulation and Energy Balance in Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Igamberdiev, Abir U.; Eprintsev, Alexander T.

    2016-01-01

    Organic acids are synthesized in plants as a result of the incomplete oxidation of photosynthetic products and represent the stored pools of fixed carbon accumulated due to different transient times of conversion of carbon compounds in metabolic pathways. When redox level in the cell increases, e.g., in conditions of active photosynthesis, the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle in mitochondria is transformed to a partial cycle supplying citrate for the synthesis of 2-oxoglutarate and glutamate (citrate valve), while malate is accumulated and participates in the redox balance in different cell compartments (via malate valve). This results in malate and citrate frequently being the most accumulated acids in plants. However, the intensity of reactions linked to the conversion of these compounds can cause preferential accumulation of other organic acids, e.g., fumarate or isocitrate, in higher concentrations than malate and citrate. The secondary reactions, associated with the central metabolic pathways, in particularly with the TCA cycle, result in accumulation of other organic acids that are derived from the intermediates of the cycle. They form the additional pools of fixed carbon and stabilize the TCA cycle. Trans-aconitate is formed from citrate or cis-aconitate, accumulation of hydroxycitrate can be linked to metabolism of 2-oxoglutarate, while 4-hydroxy-2-oxoglutarate can be formed from pyruvate and glyoxylate. Glyoxylate, a product of either glycolate oxidase or isocitrate lyase, can be converted to oxalate. Malonate is accumulated at high concentrations in legume plants. Organic acids play a role in plants in providing redox equilibrium, supporting ionic gradients on membranes, and acidification of the extracellular medium. PMID:27471516

  18. Linking Emotional Intelligence to Achieve Technology Enhanced Learning in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kruger, Janette; Blignaut, A. Seugnet

    2013-01-01

    Higher education institutions (HEIs) increasingly use technology-enhanced learning (TEL) environments (e.g. blended learning and e-learning) to improve student throughput and retention rates. As the demand for TEL courses increases, expectations rise for faculty to meet the challenge of using TEL effectively. The promises that TEL holds have not…

  19. The Necessity of Narrative: Linking Literature and Health Care in Higher Education Curricula

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Essary, Alison C.; Lussier, Mark

    2014-01-01

    As programs in medical humanities continue to emerge in the curricula of institutions of higher education, the most prominent thread connecting medical and humanities disciplines has been "narrative medicine," which is a prominent presence in numerous previously established programs across the United States, including Columbia, NYU,…

  20. Study Discovers Link between an Instructor's Leadership Type and Teaching Styles in the Higher Education Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yacapsin, Maude; Stick, Sheldon L.

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between instructor leadership type and teaching style in higher education classrooms. One survey, the Kaleidoscope Profile (Haggart, 1997) sought to determine instructor leadership type and an instructor's approach to teaching curriculum in the workplace. It was administered to two groups…

  1. Soybean ribulose bisphosphate carboxylase small subunit: Mechanisms and determinants of RNA turnover in higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Meagher, R.B.

    1990-02-01

    The goals of examining the mechanisms and determinants of RNA turnover in higher plants remain the same. We will continue with two of the major approaches (1) in vivo chemical modification of RNA structure and (2) analysis of Rubisco SSU RNA structure and turnover in transgenic plants. We plan to reduce the amount of molecular physiology (studies of transcription and steady state levels) to a minimum and expand these efforts into the analysis of plant rebonucleases. We have also broadened our examination of light induced turnover of rubisco SSU RNA to include general RNA turnover. We plan to identify specific 3{prime}->5{prime} precessive ribonuclease by complementation of E. coli mutants. The activity of these novel RNases and their potential role in plant RNA turnover and processing will be characterized.

  2. Design and optimization of an experimental bioregenerative life support system with higher plants and silkworms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Enzhu; Bartsev, Sergey I.; Zhao, Ming; Liu, Professor Hong

    The conceptual scheme of an experimental bioregenerative life support system (BLSS) for planetary exploration was designed, which consisted of four elements - human metabolism, higher plants, silkworms and waste treatment. 15 kinds of higher plants, such as wheat, rice, soybean, lettuce, mulberry, et al., were selected as regenerative component of BLSS providing the crew with air, water, and vegetable food. Silkworms, which producing animal nutrition for crews, were fed by mulberry-leaves during the first three instars, and lettuce leaves last two instars. The inedible biomass of higher plants, human wastes and silkworm feces were composted into soil like substrate, which can be reused by higher plants cultivation. Salt, sugar and some household material such as soap, shampoo would be provided from outside. To support the steady state of BLSS the same amount and elementary composition of dehydrated wastes were removed periodically. The balance of matter flows between BLSS components was described by the system of algebraic equations. The mass flows between the components were optimized by EXCEL spreadsheets and using Solver. The numerical method used in this study was Newton's method.

  3. Gene Expression and Regulation of Higher Plants Under Soil Water Stress

    PubMed Central

    Ni, Fu-Tai; Chu, Li-Ye; Shao, Hong-Bo; Liu, Zeng-Hui

    2009-01-01

    Higher plants not only provide human beings renewable food, building materials and energy, but also play the most important role in keeping a stable environment on earth. Plants differ from animals in many aspects, but the important is that plants are more easily influenced by environment than animals. Plants have a series of fine mechanisms for responding to environmental changes, which has been established during their long-period evolution and artificial domestication. The machinery related to molecular biology is the most important basis. The elucidation of it will extremely and purposefully promote the sustainable utilization of plant resources and make the best use of its current potential under different scales. This molecular mechanism at least includes drought signal recognition (input), signal transduction (many cascade biochemical reactions are involved in this process), signal output, signal responses and phenotype realization, which is a multi-dimension network system and contains many levels of gene expression and regulation. We will focus on the physiological and molecular adaptive machinery of plants under soil water stress and draw a possible blueprint for it. Meanwhile, the issues and perspectives are also discussed. We conclude that biological measures is the basic solution to solving various types of issues in relation to sustainable development and the plant measures is the eventual way. PMID:19949548

  4. Diurnal adjustment in ultraviolet sunscreen protection is widespread among higher plants.

    PubMed

    Barnes, Paul W; Flint, Stephan D; Tobler, Mark A; Ryel, Ronald J

    2016-05-01

    The accumulation of ultraviolet (UV)-absorbing compounds (flavonoids and related phenylpropanoids) in the epidermis of higher plants reduces the penetration of solar UV radiation to underlying tissues and is a primary mechanism of acclimation to changing UV conditions resulting from ozone depletion and climate change. Previously we reported that several herbaceous plant species were capable of rapid, diurnal adjustments in epidermal UV transmittance (T UV), but how widespread this phenomenon is among plants has been unknown. In the present study, we tested the generality of this response by screening 37 species of various cultivated and wild plants growing in four locations spanning a gradient of ambient solar UV and climate (Hawaii, Utah, Idaho and Louisiana). Non-destructive measurements of adaxial T UV indicated that statistically significant midday decreases in T UV occurred in 49 % of the species tested, including both herbaceous and woody growth forms, and there was substantial interspecific variation in the magnitude of these changes. In general, plants in Louisiana exhibited larger diurnal changes in T UV than those in the other locations. Moreover, across all taxa, the magnitude of these changes was positively correlated with minimum daily air temperatures but not daily UV irradiances. Results indicate that diurnal changes in UV shielding are widespread among higher plants, vary both within and among species and tend to be greatest in herbaceous plants growing in warm environments. These findings suggest that plant species differ in their UV protection "strategies" though the functional and ecological significance of this variation in UV sunscreen protection remains unclear at present.

  5. High CO2 Primes Plant Biotic Stress Defences through Redox-Linked Pathways1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Industrial activities have caused tropospheric CO2 concentrations to increase over the last two centuries, a trend that is predicted to continue for at least the next several decades. Here, we report that growth of plants in a CO2-enriched environment activates responses that are central to defense against pathogenic attack. Salicylic acid accumulation was triggered by high-growth CO2 in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and other plants such as bean (Phaseolus vulgaris). A detailed analysis in Arabidopsis revealed that elevated CO2 primes multiple defense pathways, leading to increased resistance to bacterial and fungal challenge. Analysis of gene-specific mutants provided no evidence that activation of plant defense pathways by high CO2 was caused by stomatal closure. Rather, the activation is partly linked to metabolic effects involving redox signaling. In support of this, genetic modification of redox components (glutathione contents and NADPH-generating enzymes) prevents full priming of the salicylic acid pathway and associated resistance by high CO2. The data point to a particularly influential role for the nonphosphorylating glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, a cytosolic enzyme whose role in plants remains unclear. Our observations add new information on relationships between high CO2 and oxidative signaling and provide novel insight into plant stress responses in conditions of increased CO2. PMID:27578552

  6. Analysis of links between groundwater recharge and discharge areas and wetland plant communities distribution in Middle Biebrza Basin, Poland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grygoruk, Mateusz; Batelaan, Okke; Okruszko, Tomasz; Kotowski, Wiktor; Rycharski, Marek; Chormanski, Jaroslaw; Miroslaw-Swiatek, Dorota

    2010-05-01

    . Results indicated spatial distibution of water balance components of different wetland habitats. In areas of fen plant communities, modelled intensity of vertical upward groundwater flow to the top layer is significantly higher than in ombrotrophic habitats. Research indicated, that spatial patterns of groundwater recharge/discharge intensity is strongly linked to areal distribution of water quality dependent phreatophytic plant communities. In certain areas, simulated drainage conditions increased the thickness of the unsaturated zone, which explains a crucial response of wetland evolution in the last centuries: redirection of groundwater flow towards artificial canals resulted in diminished throughflow in organogenic layer, which causes accumulation of acidic rain water and - consequently - development of ombrotrophic habitats.

  7. Beyond neutral and forbidden links: morphological matches and the assembly of mutualistic hawkmoth-plant networks.

    PubMed

    Sazatornil, Federico D; Moré, Marcela; Benitez-Vieyra, Santiago; Cocucci, Andrea A; Kitching, Ian J; Schlumpberger, Boris O; Oliveira, Paulo E; Sazima, Marlies; Amorim, Felipe W

    2016-11-01

    A major challenge in evolutionary ecology is to understand how co-evolutionary processes shape patterns of interactions between species at community level. Pollination of flowers with long corolla tubes by long-tongued hawkmoths has been invoked as a showcase model of co-evolution. Recently, optimal foraging models have predicted that there might be a close association between mouthparts' length and the corolla depth of the visited flowers, thus favouring trait convergence and specialization at community level. Here, we assessed whether hawkmoths more frequently pollinate plants with floral tube lengths similar to their proboscis lengths (morphological match hypothesis) against abundance-based processes (neutral hypothesis) and ecological trait mismatches constraints (forbidden links hypothesis), and how these processes structure hawkmoth-plant mutualistic networks from five communities in four biogeographical regions of South America. We found convergence in morphological traits across the five communities and that the distribution of morphological differences between hawkmoths and plants is consistent with expectations under the morphological match hypothesis in three of the five communities. In the two remaining communities, which are ecotones between two distinct biogeographical areas, interactions are better predicted by the neutral hypothesis. Our findings are consistent with the idea that diffuse co-evolution drives the evolution of extremely long proboscises and flower tubes, and highlight the importance of morphological traits, beyond the forbidden links hypothesis, in structuring interactions between mutualistic partners, revealing that the role of niche-based processes can be much more complex than previously known.

  8. Links between Plant Invasion, Anthropogenic Nitrogen Enrichment, and Wildfires: A Systematic Review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Felker-Quinn, E.; Gooding Lassiter, M.; Maxwell, A.; Housego, R.; Young, B.

    2014-12-01

    Wildfires can become positive feedbacks in climate change scenarios, because wildfires release large amounts of carbon sequestered in plants and soil to the atmosphere, and because their frequency increases with increasing temperatures. Invasive plants represent an important biotic link between anthropogenic activity and wildfire, as many of these species benefit from human disturbance while increasing fire frequency and severity. A robust body of literature addresses the response of invasive species to nitrogen enrichment, and a separate body of research assesses the feedbacks between invasive plant species and wildfire. We have undertaken a systematic review of these fields in order to evaluate the hypothesis that anthropogenic nitrogen loading contributes to increasing wildfires by promoting the growth and spread of fire-adapted invasive plant species. We identified invasive plant species using the Fire Effects Information System (FEIS), a Forest Service database that evaluates fire ecology of species identified as being of concern by land managers. We used information contained in the FEIS as well as more recent studies to characterize species on a continuum from fire-adapted to fire-intolerant based on traits related to interactions of fire with survival, reproduction, and spread. Of the 107 invasive plant species with fire ecology reports in the FEIS, we have initially classified 18 as fire-adapted, possessing traits that intensify fire regimes. Additionally, 33 species are fire-tolerant, benefiting from fire primarily because it creates a high-resource, low-competition environment. In continuing work, we are evaluating the responses of the invasive plant species to increased anthropogenic nitrogen with a focus on traits such as germination, productivity, and survival, as these traits contribute to wildfire frequency and severity. The views expressed in this abstract are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views or policies of the U

  9. Rolling-circle replication of mitochondrial DNA in the higher plant Chenopodium album (L.).

    PubMed Central

    Backert, S; Dörfel, P; Lurz, R; Börner, T

    1996-01-01

    The mitochondrial genomes of higher plants are larger and more complex than those of all other groups of organisms. We have studied the in vivo replication of chromosomal and plasmid mitochondrial DNAs prepared from a suspension culture and whole plants of the dicotyledonous higher plant Chenopodium album (L.). Electron microscopic studies revealed sigma-shaped, linear, and open circular molecules (subgenomic circles) of variable size as well as a minicircular plasmid of 1.3 kb (mp1). The distribution of single-stranded mitochondrial DNA in the sigma structures and the detection of entirely single-stranded molecules indicate a rolling-circle type of replication of plasmid mp1 and subgenomic circles. About half of the sigma-like molecules had tails exceeding the lengths of the corresponding circle, suggesting the formation of concatemers. Two replication origins (nicking sites) could be identified on mpl by electron microscopy and by a new approach based on the mapping of restriction fragments representing the identical 5' ends of the tails of sigma-like molecules. These data provide, for the first time, evidence for a rolling-circle mode of replication in the mitochondria of higher plants. PMID:8887658

  10. The "resurrection method" for modification of specific proteins in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Mori, Masashi; Dohi, Koji

    2005-11-07

    We describe a new method designated "the resurrection method" by which a modified protein is expressed in higher plants in place of the original protein. The modified gene constructed by introducing synonymous codon substitutions throughout the original gene to prevent the sequence-specific degradation of its mRNA during RNA silencing is expressed while the expression of the original gene is suppressed. Here, we report the successful alteration of the biochemical properties of green fluorescent protein expressed in transgenic Nicotiana benthamiana, suggesting that this method could be useful for gene control in living plants.

  11. Towards aging mechanisms of cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) cable insulation materials in nuclear power plants

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Shuaishuai; Fifield, Leonard S.; Bowler, Nicola

    2016-12-19

    Cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE) cable insulation material undergoes simultaneous, accelerated thermal and gamma-radiation aging to simulate the long-term aging environment within nuclear power plants (NPPs). A variety of materials characterization tests, including scanning electron microscopy, thermo-gravimetric analysis, differential scanning calorimetry, oxidation induction time, gel-fraction and dielectric properties measurement, are conducted on pristine and differently aged XLPE samples. A preliminary model of one possible aging mechanism of XLPE cable insulation material under gamma radiation at elevated temperature of 115 °C is suggested.

  12. Water-deficit stress-induced anatomical changes in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Shao, Hong-Bo; Chu, Li-Ye; Jaleel, Cheruth Abdul; Zhao, Chang-Xing

    2008-03-01

    Water is vital for plant growth and development. Water-deficit stress, permanent or temporary, limits the growth and the distribution of natural vegetation and the performance of cultivated plants more than any other environmental factors do. Although research and practices aimed at improving water-stress resistance and water-use efficiency have been carried out for many years, the mechanism involved is still not clear. Further understanding and manipulating plant-water relations and water-stress tolerance at the scale of physiology and molecular biology can significantly improve plant productivity and environmental quality. Currently, post-genomics and metabolomics are very important to explore anti-drought gene resource in different life forms, but modern agricultural sustainable development must be combined with plant physiological measures in the field, on the basis of which post-genomics and metabolomics will have further a practical prospect. In this review, we discussed the anatomical changes and drought-tolerance strategies under drought condition in higher plants.

  13. Identification of Plant Extracts that Inhibit the Formation of Diabetes-Linked IAPP Amyloid.

    PubMed

    Fuentes, Ana Lucia; Hennessy, Kathleen; Pascual, Jacob; Pepe, Nicole; Wang, In; Santiago, Alexander; Chaggan, Cynthia; Martinez, Jessica; Rivera, Evelyn; Cota, Paola; Cunha, Christina; Nogaj, Luiza A; Moffet, David A

    2016-03-01

    The extracts of 27 vegetables, spices and herbs were screened for their functional ability to inhibit the aggregation of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP, amylin) into toxic amyloid aggregates. The aggregation of IAPP has been directly linked to the death of pancreatic β-islet cells in type 2 diabetes. Inhibiting the aggregation of IAPP is believed to have the potential to slow, if not prevent entirely, the progression of this disease. As vegetables, spices and herbs are known to possess many different positive health effects, the extracts of 27 plants (abundant within the United States and spanning several plant families) were screened for their ability to inhibit the formation of toxic IAPP aggregates. Their anti-amyloid activities were assessed through (1) thioflavin T binding assays, (2) visualization of amyloid fibers using atomic force microscopy and (3) cell rescue studies. From this research, mint, peppermint, red bell pepper and thyme emerged as possessing the greatest anti-amyloid activity.

  14. Identification of Plant Extracts that Inhibit the Formation of Diabetes-Linked IAPP Amyloid

    PubMed Central

    Fuentes, Ana Lucia; Hennessy, Kathleen; Pascual, Jacob; Pepe, Nicole; Wang, In; Santiago, Alexander; Chaggan, Cynthia; Martinez, Jessica; Rivera, Evelyn; Cota, Paola; Cunha, Christina; Nogaj, Luiza A; Moffet, David A

    2016-01-01

    The extracts of 27 vegetables, spices and herbs were screened for their functional ability to inhibit the aggregation of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP, amylin) into toxic amyloid aggregates. The aggregation of IAPP has been directly linked to the death of pancreatic β-islet cells in type 2 diabetes. Inhibiting the aggregation of IAPP is believed to have the potential to slow, if not prevent entirely, the progression of this disease. As vegetables, spices and herbs are known to possess many different positive health effects, the extracts of 27 plants (abundant within the United States and spanning several plant families) were screened for their ability to inhibit the formation of toxic IAPP aggregates. Their anti-amyloid activities were assessed through (1) thioflavin T binding assays, (2) visualization of amyloid fibers using atomic force microscopy and (3) cell rescue studies. From this research, mint, peppermint, red bell pepper and thyme emerged as possessing the greatest anti-amyloid activity. PMID:27042401

  15. Preliminary Modelling of Mass Flux at the Surface of Plant Leaves within the MELiSSA Higher Plant Compartments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holmberg, Madeleine; Paille, Christel; Lasseur, Christophe

    The ESA project Micro Ecological Life Support System Alternative (MELiSSA) is an ecosystem of micro-organisms and higher plants, constructed with the objective of being operated as a tool to understand artificial ecosystems to be used for a long-term or permanent manned planetary base (e.g. Moon or Mars). The purpose of such a system is to provide for generation of food, water recycling, atmospheric regeneration and waste management within defined standards of quality and reliability. As MELiSSA consists of individual compartments which are connected to each other, the robustness of the system is fully dependent on the control of each compartment, as well as the flow management between them. Quality of consumables and reliability of the ecosystem rely on the knowledge, understanding and control of each of the components. This includes the full understanding of all processes related to the higher plants. To progress in that direction, this paper focuses on the mechanical processes driving the gas and liquid exchanges between the plant leaf and its environment. The process responsible for the mass transfer on the surface of plant leaves is diffusion. The diffusion flux is dependent on the behaviour of the stoma of the leaf and also on the leaf boundary layer (BL). In this paper, the physiology of the leaf is briefly examined in order to relate parameters such as light quality, light quantity, CO2 concentration, temperature, leaf water potential, humidity, vapour pressure deficit (VPD) gradients and pollutants to the opening or closing of stomata. The diffusion process is described theoretically and the description is compared to empirical approaches. The variables of the BL are examined and the effect airflow in the compartment has on the BL is investigated. Also presented is the impact changes in different environmental parameters may have on the fluid exchanges. Finally, some tests, to evaluate the accuracy of the concluded model, are suggested.

  16. Gravitropism in higher plant shoots. IV - Further studies on participation of ethylene

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wheeler, Raymond M.; White, Rosemary G.; Salisbury, Frank B.

    1986-01-01

    Various hypotheses regarding the influence of ethylene on gravitropism in higher plant shoots were experimentally tested. It was found that ethylene at 1.0 and 10.0 cu cm/cu m decreased the rate of gravitropic bending in cocklebur stems, while 0.1 cm/cu m of ethylene had little effect. Treating cocklebur plants with 1.0 mmol aminoethoxyvinylglycine (AVG, an ethylene synthesis inhibitor) delayed stem bending compared with controls, but adding 0.1 cu cm/cu m ethylene in the surrounding atmosphere partially restored the rate of bending of AVG-treated plants. Virtually all newly synthesized ethylene appeared in bottom halves of horizontal stems, where ethylene concentrations were as much as 100 times those in upright stems or in top halves of horizontal stems. Auxin applied to one side of a vertical stem caused extreme bending away from that side; gibberellic acid, kinetin, and abscisic acid were without effect.

  17. Role of Ca[sup ++]/calmodulin in the regulation of microtubules in higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Cyr, R.

    1992-01-01

    The cytoskeleton including its microtubule (Mt) component participates in processes that directly affect growth and development in higher plants. Normal cytoskeletal function requires the precise and orderly arrangement of Mts into several cell cycle and developmentally specific arrays. The cortical array somehow directs the deposition of cellulose. Little molecular information is available regarding the formation of these arrays or the cellular signals to which they respond. Experimental data described here suggests that plant cells use calcium, in the form of a Ca[sup ++]/calmodulin complex, to affect the dynamics of Mts within the cortical array. Owing to the importance of Ca[sup ++] as a regulatory ion in higher plants we are probing for a putative Ca[sup ++]/Mt transduction pathway which may serve to integrate Mt activities within the growing and developing plant cell. We are using a lysed cell model in conjunction with immunocytochemical and biochemical methodologies to dissect how Ca[sup ++]/calmodulin interacts with Mts to affect their function.

  18. [Effects of low doses of ionizing radiation on substrate and germination of higher plants seeds].

    PubMed

    Tsetlin, V V; Levinskikh, M A; Nefedova, E L; Derendiaeva, T A; Fedotova, I V

    2008-01-01

    The investigation had the aim to evaluate the effects of low doses (< 1-10 cGy) of ionizing radiation on the physical-chemical qualities of high-purification water. It had also the goal to study germination rate and energy and sprouting of four species of higher plants exposed directly and indirectly (watering) to alpha- and beta-radiation from radionuclids sources. When compared with intact water, after exposure to beta-particles electrical currents in water-filled containers consistently tended upward and downward after exposure to alpha-particles. Radiation-induced changes in water parameters were observed throughout the experiment with higher plant seeds. Evaluation of the effect of irradiated water on sprouting showed that plant sensitivity varied with species and depended on type of radiation particles. Neither alpha- nor beta particles affected the wheat sprouts; however, both types of particles inhibited growth of mustard and accelerated growth of lentil and haricot Mash as compared with control crops. The investigation suggests that plant species for space greenhouses should be selected with account of their radioresistance and radiosensitivity.

  19. Excitation energy transfer in vitro between phycobiliproteins and thylakoid photosystem II of higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaonan; Tseng, C. K.

    1992-12-01

    The excitation energy transfer from phycobiliproteins to thylakoid PSII of higher plants was investigated. When incubated with spinach thylakoids, phycobiliproteins isolated from red and blue-green algae transferred light energy absorbed to spinach PSII. The efficiency of energy transfer was dependent on the kind of phycobiliproteins used. If spinach thylakoids were replaced by the thylakoids of Brassica chinensis, R-phycoerythin or C-phycocyanin did not transfer their excitation energy to PSII of Brassica chinensis unless allophycocyanin was present.

  20. Carbon dioxide and the stomatal control of water balance and photosynthesis in higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Taiz, L.; Zeiger, E.; Mawson, B. T.; Cornish, K.; Radin, J. W.; Turcotte, E. L.; Hercovitz, S.; Tallman, G.; Karlsson, P. E.; Bogomolni, R. A.; Talbott, L. D.; Srivastava, A.

    1992-01-01

    Research continued into the investigation of the effects of carbon dioxide on stomatal control of water balance and photosynthesis in higher plants. Topics discussed this period include a method of isolating a sufficient number of guard cell chloroplasts for biochemical studies by mechanical isolation of epidermal peels; the measurement of stomatal apertures with a digital image analysis system; development of a high performance liquid chromatography method for quantification of metabolites in guard cells; and genetic control of stomatal movements in Pima cotton. (CBS)

  1. Low-temperature perception leading to gene expression and cold tolerance in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Knight, Marc R; Knight, Heather

    2012-09-01

    Plant species exhibit a range of tolerances to low temperatures, and these constitute a major determinant of their geographical distribution and use as crops. When tolerance is insufficient, either chilling or freezing injuries result. A variety of mechanisms are employed to evade the ravages of extreme or sub-optimal temperatures. Many of these involve cold-responsive gene expression and require that the drop in temperature is first sensed by the plant. Despite intensive research over the last 100 yr or longer, we still cannot easily answer the question of how plants sense low temperature. Over recent years, genomic and post-genomic approaches have produced a wealth of information relating to the sequence of events leading from cold perception to appropriate and useful responses. However, there are also crucial and significant gaps in the pathways constructed from these data. We describe the literature pertaining to the current understanding of cold perception, signalling and regulation of low-temperature-responsive gene expression in higher plants, raising some of the key questions that still intrigue plant biologists today and that could be targets for future work. Our review focuses on the control of gene expression in the pathways leading from cold perception to chilling and freezing tolerance.

  2. Comparative analysis of microsatellites in chloroplast genomes of lower and higher plants.

    PubMed

    George, Biju; Bhatt, Bhavin S; Awasthi, Mayur; George, Binu; Singh, Achuit K

    2015-11-01

    Microsatellites, or simple sequence repeats (SSRs), contain repetitive DNA sequence where tandem repeats of one to six base pairs are present number of times. Chloroplast genome sequences have been  shown to possess extensive variations in the length, number and distribution of SSRs. However, a comparative analysis of chloroplast microsatellites is not available. Considering their potential importance in generating genomic diversity, we have systematically analysed the abundance and distribution of simple and compound microsatellites in 164 sequenced chloroplast genomes from wide range of plants. The key findings of these studies are (1) a large number of mononucleotide repeats as compared to SSR(2-6)(di-, tri-, tetra-, penta-, hexanucleotide repeats) are present in all chloroplast genomes investigated, (2) lower plants such as algae show wide variation in relative abundance, density and distribution of microsatellite repeats as compared to flowering plants, (3) longer SSRs are excluded from coding regions of most chloroplast genomes, (4) GC content has a weak influence on number, relative abundance and relative density of mononucleotide as well as SSR(2-6). However, GC content strongly showed negative correlation with relative density (R (2) = 0.5, P < 0.05) and relative abundance (R (2) = 0.6, P < 0.05) of cSSRs. In summary, our comparative studies of chloroplast genomes illustrate the variable distribution of microsatellites and revealed that chloroplast genome of smaller plants possesses relatively more genomic diversity compared to higher plants.

  3. Comparative study on sensitivity of higher plants and fish to heavy fuel oil.

    PubMed

    Kazlauskiene, N; Svecevicius, G; Vosyliene, M Z; Marciulioniene, D; Montvydiene, D

    2004-08-01

    Laboratory tests were conducted on higher plants [garden cress (Lepidium sativum), great duckweed (Spirodela polyrrhiza), and Tradescantia clone BNL 02] and fish [rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) at all stages of development: eggs, larvae and adults] to estimate their sensitivity to heavy fuel oil (HFO). A number of biological indices (survival, growth, and physiological and morphological parameters) as well as the genotoxic impact (Tradescantia) of HFO was evaluated by acute and chronic toxicity tests. Fish were found to be more sensitive to the toxic effect of HFO than were higher plants. EC(50) values obtained for higher plants ranged from 8.7 g/L (L. sativum) to 19.8 g/L (Tradescantia), and maximum-acceptable-toxicant concentration (MATC) values ranged from 0.1 to 1.0 g/L of total HFO for L. sativum and Tradescantia, respectively. The 96-h LC(50) values ranged from 0.33 g/L, for larvae, to 2.97 g/L, for adult fish, and the MATC value for fish was found to be equal to 0.0042 g/L of total HFO. To evaluate and predict the ecological risk of the overall effects of oil spills, studies should be performed using a set of acute and chronic bioassays that include test species of different phylogenetic levels with the most sensitive morphological, physiological, and genotoxic indices.

  4. Comparative studies on plant range size: Linking reproductive and regenerative traits in two Ipomoea species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Astegiano, Julia; Funes, Guillermo; Galetto, Leonardo

    2010-09-01

    Reproductive and regenerative traits associated with colonization and persistence ability may determine plant range size. However, few comparative studies on plant distribution have assessed these traits simultaneously. Pollinator richness and frequency of visits, autonomous self-pollination ability, reproductive output (i.e., reproductive traits), seed bank strategy and seedling density (i.e., regenerative traits) were compared between the narrowly distributed Ipomoea rubriflora O'Donnell (Convolvulaceae) and its widespread congener Ipomoea purpurea (L.) Roth. The narrowly distributed species showed higher ecological specialization to pollinators and lower autonomous self-pollination ability. Frequency of visits, natural seed/ovule ratio and fruit set, and total fruit production did not differ between species. However, the number of seeds produced per fruit was lower in the narrowly distributed species, translating into lower total seed production per plant. Indeed, I. rubriflora formed smaller transient and persistent seed banks and showed lower seedling density than the widespread I. purpurea. These reproductive and regenerative trait results suggest that the narrowly distributed species may have lower colonization and persistence ability than its widespread congener. They further suggest that the negative effects of lower fecundity in the narrowly distributed species might persist in time through the long-lasting effects of total seed production on seed bank size, reducing the species' ability to buffered environmental stochasticity. However, other regenerative traits, such as seed size, and processes such as pre- and post-dispersal seed predation, might modulate the effects of plant fecundity on plant colonization and persistence ability and thus range size.

  5. Modeling photosynthesis of discontinuous plant canopies by linking Geometric Optical Radiative Transfer model with biochemical processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xin, Q.; Gong, P.; Li, W.

    2015-02-01

    Modeling vegetation photosynthesis is essential for understanding carbon exchanges between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere. The radiative transfer process within plant canopies is one of the key drivers that regulate canopy photosynthesis. Most vegetation cover consists of discrete plant crowns, of which the physical observation departs from the underlying assumption of a homogenous and uniform medium in classic radiative transfer theory. Here we advance the Geometric Optical Radiative Transfer (GORT) model to simulate photosynthesis activities for discontinuous plant canopies. We separate radiation absorption into two components that are absorbed by sunlit and shaded leaves, and derive analytical solutions by integrating over the canopy layer. To model leaf-level and canopy-level photosynthesis, leaf light absorption is then linked to the biochemical process of gas diffusion through leaf stomata. The canopy gap probability derived from GORT differs from classic radiative transfer theory, especially when the leaf area index is high, due to leaf clumping effects. Tree characteristics such as tree density, crown shape, and canopy length affect leaf clumping and regulate radiation interception. Modeled gross primary production (GPP) for two deciduous forest stands could explain more than 80% of the variance of flux tower measurements at both near hourly and daily time scales. We also demonstrate that the ambient CO2 concentration influences daytime vegetation photosynthesis, which needs to be considered in state-of-the-art biogeochemical models. The proposed model is complementary to classic radiative transfer theory and shows promise in modeling the radiative transfer process and photosynthetic activities over discontinuous forest canopies.

  6. Plant phenology in western Canada: trends and links to the view from space.

    PubMed

    Beaubien, Elisabeth G; Hall-Beyer, Mryka

    2003-01-01

    One feature of climate change is the trends to earlier spring onset in many north temperate areas of the world. The timing of spring flowering and leafing of perennial plants is largely controlled by temperature accumulation; both temperature and phenological records illustrate changes in recent decades. Phenology studies date back over a century, with extensive databases existing for western Canada. Earlier spring flowering has been noted for many woody plants, with larger trends seen for species that develop at spring's start. Implications for ecosystems of trends to earlier spring arrival include changes in plant species composition, changes in timing and distribution of pests and disease, and potentially disrupted ecological interactions. While Alberta has extensive phenology databases (for species, years, and geographic coverage) for recent decades, these data cannot provide continuous ground coverage. There is great potential for phenological data to provide ground validation for satellite imagery interpretation, especially as new remote sensors are becoming available. Phenological networks are experiencing a resurgence of interest in Canada (www.plantwatch.ca) and globally, and linking these ground-based observations with the view from space will greatly enhance our capacity to track the biotic response to climate changes.

  7. The main goals of experiments with the higher plants in the project MARS - 500.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sychev, Vladimir; Levinskikh, Margarita; Podolsky, Igor; Gushin, Vadim; Bingham, Gail; Bates, Scott

    At the present step of development of manned flight to Mars there is a current opinion that including a greenhouse in the composition of Life Support Systems (LSS) of Martian expedition would essentially improve a spacecraft habitat conditions and also would have impact to preventing of a number of possible consequences of continuous presence of human in artificial environment. Development of design objectives of future space greenhouses applicable for conditions of Martian expedition should be based, in our opinion, not only on the results of real space experiments, conducted onboard of orbital stations, but also on the results of ground-based experiments. In connection with above considerations there is a number of technological, biological and psychological experiments is planned to be conducted in the frame of MARS-500 project to resolve questions related to incorporation of higher plants in LSS of inter-planetary flights. The questions include: testing of developed elements of the greenhouse construction and methods for cultivation of vegetables under conditions of imitation of the flight of Martian expedition; selection of breeds and species of vegetables, characterized by high speed of biomass accumulation, attractive taste and appearance; investigation of growth, development and metabolism of plants under long-term continuous cultivation in manned pressurized object; comparison of the productivity of the plants as a function of utilization of different light source; determination of maximum amount of planted biomass of the plants and number of possible vegetation under conditions of long-term utilization of vegetation chamber of the greenhouse without substrate replacement; investigation of crops dietetic preferences of crew members; estimation of quality of plant biomass using seeding of the plants by microorganisms and nitrates and vitamins content as markers; development and approbation of methodical approaches to estimation of psychological factors of

  8. From Plants to Birds: Higher Avian Predation Rates in Trees Responding to Insect Herbivory

    PubMed Central

    Mäntylä, Elina; Alessio, Giorgio A.; Blande, James D.; Heijari, Juha; Holopainen, Jarmo K.; Laaksonen, Toni; Piirtola, Panu; Klemola, Tero

    2008-01-01

    Background An understanding of the evolution of potential signals from plants to the predators of their herbivores may provide exciting examples of co-evolution among multiple trophic levels. Understanding the mechanism behind the attraction of predators to plants is crucial to conclusions about co-evolution. For example, insectivorous birds are attracted to herbivore-damaged trees without seeing the herbivores or the defoliated parts, but it is not known whether birds use cues from herbivore-damaged plants with a specific adaptation of plants for this purpose. Methodology We examined whether signals from damaged trees attract avian predators in the wild and whether birds could use volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions or net photosynthesis of leaves as cues to detect herbivore-rich trees. We conducted a field experiment with mountain birches (Betula pubescens ssp. czerepanovii), their main herbivore (Epirrita autumnata) and insectivorous birds. Half of the trees had herbivore larvae defoliating trees hidden inside branch bags and half had empty bags as controls. We measured predation rate of birds towards artificial larvae on tree branches, and VOC emissions and net photosynthesis of leaves. Principal Findings and Significance The predation rate was higher in the herbivore trees than in the control trees. This confirms that birds use cues from trees to locate insect-rich trees in the wild. The herbivore trees had decreased photosynthesis and elevated emissions of many VOCs, which suggests that birds could use either one, or both, as cues. There was, however, large variation in how the VOC emission correlated with predation rate. Emissions of (E)-DMNT [(E)-4,8-dimethyl-1,3,7-nonatriene], β-ocimene and linalool were positively correlated with predation rate, while those of highly inducible green leaf volatiles were not. These three VOCs are also involved in the attraction of insect parasitoids and predatory mites to herbivore-damaged plants, which suggests that

  9. Unravelling the regulatory mechanisms that modulate the MEP pathway in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Cordoba, Elizabeth; Salmi, Mari; León, Patricia

    2009-01-01

    The methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate pathway is responsible for the biosynthesis of a substantial number of natural compounds of biological and biotechnological importance. In recent years, this pathway has become an obvious target to develop new herbicides and antimicrobial drugs. In addition, the production of a variety of compounds of medical and agricultural interest may be possible through the genetic manipulation of this pathway. To this end, a complete understanding of the molecular mechanisms that regulate this pathway is of tremendous importance. Recent data have accumulated that show some of the multiple mechanisms that regulate the methyl-D-erythritol 4-phosphate pathway in plants. In this review we will describe some of these and discuss their implications. It has been demonstrated that 1-deoxy-D-xylulose-5-phosphate synthase (DXS), the first enzyme of this route, plays a major role in the overall regulation of the pathway. A small gene family codes for this enzyme in most of the plants which have been analysed so far, and the members of these gene families belong to different phylogenetic groups. Each of these genes exhibits a distinct expression pattern, suggesting unique functions. One of the most interesting regulatory mechanisms recently described for this pathway is the post-transcriptional regulation of the level of DXS and DXR proteins. In the case of DXS, this regulation appears conserved among plants, supporting its importance. The evidence accumulated suggests that this regulation might link the activity of this pathway with the plant's physiological conditions and the metabolic demand for the final products of this route.

  10. Extinction risk and diversification are linked in a plant biodiversity hotspot.

    PubMed

    Davies, T Jonathan; Smith, Gideon F; Bellstedt, Dirk U; Boatwright, James S; Bytebier, Benny; Cowling, Richard M; Forest, Félix; Harmon, Luke J; Muasya, A Muthama; Schrire, Brian D; Steenkamp, Yolande; van der Bank, Michelle; Savolainen, Vincent

    2011-05-01

    It is widely recognized that we are entering an extinction event on a scale approaching the mass extinctions seen in the fossil record. Present-day rates of extinction are estimated to be several orders of magnitude greater than background rates and are projected to increase further if current trends continue. In vertebrates, species traits, such as body size, fecundity, and geographic range, are important predictors of vulnerability. Although plants are the basis for life on Earth, our knowledge of plant extinctions and vulnerabilities is lagging. Here, we disentangle the underlying drivers of extinction risk in plants, focusing on the Cape of South Africa, a global biodiversity hotspot. By comparing Red List data for the British and South African floras, we demonstrate that the taxonomic distribution of extinction risk differs significantly between regions, inconsistent with a simple, trait-based model of extinction. Using a comprehensive phylogenetic tree for the Cape, we reveal a phylogenetic signal in the distribution of plant extinction risks but show that the most threatened species cluster within short branches at the tips of the phylogeny--opposite to trends in mammals. From analyzing the distribution of threatened species across 11 exemplar clades, we suggest that mode of speciation best explains the unusual phylogenetic structure of extinction risks in plants of the Cape. Our results demonstrate that explanations for elevated extinction risk in plants of the Cape flora differ dramatically from those recognized for vertebrates. In the Cape, extinction risk is higher for young and fast-evolving plant lineages and cannot be explained by correlations with simple biological traits. Critically, we find that the most vulnerable plant species are nonetheless marching towards extinction at a more rapid pace but, surprisingly, independently from anthropogenic effects. Our results have important implications for conservation priorities and cast doubts on the

  11. Phytate (Inositol Hexakisphosphate) in Soil and Phosphate Acquisition from Inositol Phosphates by Higher Plants. A Review

    PubMed Central

    Gerke, Jörg

    2015-01-01

    Phosphate (P) fixation to the soil solid phase is considered to be important for P availability and is often attributed to the strong binding of orthophosphate anion species. However, the fixation and subsequent immobilization of inositolhexa and pentaphosphate isomers (phytate) in soil is often much stronger than that of the orthosphate anion species. The result is that phytate is a main organic P form in soil and the dominating form of identifiable organic P. The reasons for the accumulation are not fully clear. Two hypothesis can be found in the literature in the last 20 years, the low activity of phytase (phosphatases) in soil, which makes phytate P unavailable to the plant roots, and, on the other hand, the strong binding of phytate to the soil solid phase with its consequent stabilization and accumulation in soil. The hypothesis that low phytase activity is responsible for phytate accumulation led to the development of genetically modified plant genotypes with a higher expression of phytase activity at the root surface and research on the effect of a higher phytate activity on P acquisition. Obviously, this hypothesis has a basic assumption, that the phytate mobility in soil is not the limiting step for P acquisition of higher plants from soil phytate. This assumption is, however, not justified considering the results on the sorption, immobilization and fixation of phytate to the soil solid phase reported in the last two decades. Phytate is strongly bound, and the P sorption maximum and probably the sorption strength of phytate P to the soil solid phase is much higher, compared to that of orthophosphate P. Mobilization of phytate seems to be a promising step to make it available to the plant roots. The excretion of organic acid anions, citrate and to a lesser extend oxalate, seems to be an important way to make phytate P available to the plants. Phytase activity at the root surface seems not be the limiting step in P acquisition from phytate. Phytate is not

  12. Formation of higher plant component microbial community in closed ecological system.

    PubMed

    Tirranen, L S

    2001-07-01

    Closed ecological systems (CES) place at the disposal of a researcher unique possibilities to study the role of microbial communities in individual components and of the entire system. The microbial community of the higher plant component has been found to form depending on specific conditions of the closed ecosystem: length of time the solution is reused, introduction of intrasystem waste water into the nutrient medium, effect of other component of the system, and system closure in terms of gas exchange. The higher plant component formed its own microbial complex different from that formed prior to closure. The microbial complex of vegetable polyculture is more diverse and stable than the monoculture of wheat. The composition of the components' microflora changed, species diversity decreased, individual species of bacteria and fungi whose numbers were not so great before the closure prevailed. Special attention should be paid to phytopathogenic and conditionally pathogenic species of microorganisms potentially hazardous to man or plants and the least controlled in CES. This situation can endanger creation of CES and make conjectural existence of preplanned components, man, specifically, and consequently, of CES as it is.

  13. Formation of higher plant component microbial community in closed ecological system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tirranen, L. S.

    2001-07-01

    Closed ecological systems (CES) place at the disposal of a researcher unique possibilities to study the role of microbial communities in individual components and of the entire system. The microbial community of the higher plant component has been found to form depending on specific conditions of the closed ecosystem: length of time the solution is reused, introduction of intrasystem waste water into the nutrient medium, effect of other component of the system, and system closure in terms of gas exchange. The higher plant component formed its own microbial complex different from that formed prior to closure. The microbial complex of vegetable polyculture is more diverse and stable than the monoculture of wheat. The composition of the components' microflora changed, species diversity decreased, individual species of bacteria and fungi whose numbers were not so great before the closure prevailed. Special attention should be paid to phytopathogenic and conditionally pathogenic species of microorganisms potentially hazardous to man or plants and the least controlled in CES. This situation can endanger creation of CES and make conjectural existence of preplanned components, man, specifically, and consequently, of CES as it is.

  14. Speed versus endurance tradeoff in plants: Leaves with higher photosynthetic rates show stronger seasonal declines.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yong-Jiang; Sack, Lawren; Cao, Kun-Fang; Wei, Xue-Mei; Li, Nan

    2017-02-10

    We tested for a tradeoff across species between plant maximum photosynthetic rate and the ability to maintain photosynthesis under adverse conditions in the unfavorable season. Such a trade-off would be consistent with the observed trade-off between maximum speed and endurance in athletes and some animals that has been explained by cost-benefit theory. This trend would have importance for the general understanding of leaf design, and would simplify models of annual leaf carbon relations. We tested for such a trade-off using a database analysis across vascular plants and using an experimental approach for 29 cycad species, representing an ancient plant lineage with diversified evergreen leaves. In both tests, a higher photosynthetic rate per mass or per area in the favorable season was associated with a stronger absolute or percent decline in the unfavorable season. We resolved a possible mechanism based on biomechanics and nitrogen allocation; cycads with high leaf toughness (leaf mass per area) and higher investment in leaf construction than in physiological function (C/N ratio) tended to have lower warm season photosynthesis but less depression in the cool season. We propose that this trade-off, consistent with cost-benefit theory, represents a significant physio-phenological constraint on the diversity and seasonal dynamics of photosynthetic rate.

  15. Speed versus endurance tradeoff in plants: Leaves with higher photosynthetic rates show stronger seasonal declines

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yong-Jiang; Sack, Lawren; Cao, Kun-Fang; Wei, Xue-Mei; Li, Nan

    2017-01-01

    We tested for a tradeoff across species between plant maximum photosynthetic rate and the ability to maintain photosynthesis under adverse conditions in the unfavorable season. Such a trade-off would be consistent with the observed trade-off between maximum speed and endurance in athletes and some animals that has been explained by cost-benefit theory. This trend would have importance for the general understanding of leaf design, and would simplify models of annual leaf carbon relations. We tested for such a trade-off using a database analysis across vascular plants and using an experimental approach for 29 cycad species, representing an ancient plant lineage with diversified evergreen leaves. In both tests, a higher photosynthetic rate per mass or per area in the favorable season was associated with a stronger absolute or percent decline in the unfavorable season. We resolved a possible mechanism based on biomechanics and nitrogen allocation; cycads with high leaf toughness (leaf mass per area) and higher investment in leaf construction than in physiological function (C/N ratio) tended to have lower warm season photosynthesis but less depression in the cool season. We propose that this trade-off, consistent with cost-benefit theory, represents a significant physio-phenological constraint on the diversity and seasonal dynamics of photosynthetic rate. PMID:28186201

  16. Regulation of photosynthesis by ion channels in cyanobacteria and higher plants.

    PubMed

    Checchetto, Vanessa; Teardo, Enrico; Carraretto, Luca; Formentin, Elide; Bergantino, Elisabetta; Giacometti, Giorgio Mario; Szabo, Ildiko

    2013-12-01

    Photosynthesis converts light energy into chemical energy, and supplies ATP and NADPH for CO2 fixation into carbohydrates and for the synthesis of several compounds which are essential for autotrophic growth. Oxygenic photosynthesis takes place in thylakoid membranes of chloroplasts and photosynthetic prokaryote cyanobacteria. An ancestral photoautotrophic prokaryote related to cyanobacteria has been proposed to give rise to chloroplasts of plants and algae through an endosymbiotic event. Indeed, photosynthetic complexes involved in the electron transport coupled to H(+) translocation and ATP synthesis are similar in higher plants and cyanobacteria. Furthermore, some of the protein and solute/ion conducting machineries also share common structure and function. Electrophysiological and biochemical evidence support the existence of ion channels in the thylakoid membrane in both types of organisms. By allowing specific ion fluxes across thylakoid membranes, ion channels have been hypothesized to either directly or indirectly regulate photosynthesis, by modulating the proton motive force. Recent molecular identification of some of the thylakoid-located channels allowed to obtain genetic proof in favor of such hypothesis. Furthermore, some ion channels of the envelope membrane in chloroplasts have also been shown to impact on this light-driven process. Here we give an overview of thylakoid/chloroplast located ion channels of higher plants and of cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. We focus on channels shown to be implicated in the regulation of photosynthesis and discuss the possible mechanisms of action.

  17. Roles of Organic Acid Anion Secretion in Aluminium Tolerance of Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Lin-Tong; Qi, Yi-Ping; Jiang, Huan-Xin; Chen, Li-Song

    2013-01-01

    Approximately 30% of the world's total land area and over 50% of the world's potential arable lands are acidic. Furthermore, the acidity of the soils is gradually increasing as a result of the environmental problems including some farming practices and acid rain. At mildly acidic or neutral soils, aluminium(Al) occurs primarily as insoluble deposits and is essentially biologically inactive. However, in many acidic soils throughout the tropics and subtropics, Al toxicity is a major factor limiting crop productivity. The Al-induced secretion of organic acid (OA) anions, mainly citrate, oxalate, and malate, from roots is the best documented mechanism of Al tolerance in higher plants. Increasing evidence shows that the Al-induced secretion of OA anions may be related to the following several factors, including (a) anion channels or transporters, (b) internal concentrations of OA anions in plant tissues, (d) temperature, (e) root plasma membrane (PM) H+-ATPase, (f) magnesium (Mg), and (e) phosphorus (P). Genetically modified plants and cells with higher Al tolerance by overexpressing genes for the secretion and the biosynthesis of OA anions have been obtained. In addition, some aspects needed to be further studied are also discussed. PMID:23509687

  18. Roles of organic acid anion secretion in aluminium tolerance of higher plants.

    PubMed

    Yang, Lin-Tong; Qi, Yi-Ping; Jiang, Huan-Xin; Chen, Li-Song

    2013-01-01

    Approximately 30% of the world's total land area and over 50% of the world's potential arable lands are acidic. Furthermore, the acidity of the soils is gradually increasing as a result of the environmental problems including some farming practices and acid rain. At mildly acidic or neutral soils, aluminium (Al) occurs primarily as insoluble deposits and is essentially biologically inactive. However, in many acidic soils throughout the tropics and subtropics, Al toxicity is a major factor limiting crop productivity. The Al-induced secretion of organic acid (OA) anions, mainly citrate, oxalate, and malate, from roots is the best documented mechanism of Al tolerance in higher plants. Increasing evidence shows that the Al-induced secretion of OA anions may be related to the following several factors, including (a) anion channels or transporters, (b) internal concentrations of OA anions in plant tissues, (d) temperature, (e) root plasma membrane (PM) H(+)-ATPase, (f) magnesium (Mg), and (e) phosphorus (P). Genetically modified plants and cells with higher Al tolerance by overexpressing genes for the secretion and the biosynthesis of OA anions have been obtained. In addition, some aspects needed to be further studied are also discussed.

  19. Physcomitrella HMGA-type proteins display structural differences compared to their higher plant counterparts

    SciTech Connect

    Lyngaard, Carina; Stemmer, Christian; Stensballe, Allan; Graf, Manuela; Gorr, Gilbert; Decker, Eva; Grasser, Klaus D.

    2008-10-03

    High mobility group (HMG) proteins of the HMGA family are chromatin-associated proteins that act as architectural factors in nucleoprotein structures involved in gene transcription. To date, HMGA-type proteins have been studied in various higher plant species, but not in lower plants. We have identified two HMGA-type proteins, HMGA1 and HMGA2, encoded in the genome of the moss model Physcomitrella patens. Compared to higher plant HMGA proteins, the two Physcomitrella proteins display some structural differences. Thus, the moss HMGA proteins have six (rather than four) AT-hook DNA-binding motifs and their N-terminal domain lacks similarity to linker histone H1. HMGA2 is expressed in moss protonema and it localises to the cell nucleus. Typical of HMGA proteins, HMGA2 interacts preferentially with A/T-rich DNA, when compared with G/C-rich DNA. In cotransformation assays in Physcomitrella protoplasts, HMGA2 stimulated reporter gene expression. In summary, our data show that functional HMGA-type proteins occur in Physcomitrella.

  20. Links between plant community composition, soil organic matter quality and microbial communities in contrasting tundra habitats.

    PubMed

    Eskelinen, Anu; Stark, Sari; Männistö, Minna

    2009-08-01

    Plant communities, soil organic matter and microbial communities are predicted to be interlinked and to exhibit concordant patterns along major environmental gradients. We investigated the relationships between plant functional type composition, soil organic matter quality and decomposer community composition, and how these are related to major environmental variation in non-acid and acid soils derived from calcareous versus siliceous bedrocks, respectively. We analysed vegetation, organic matter and microbial community compositions from five non-acidic and five acidic heath sites in alpine tundra in northern Europe. Sequential organic matter fractionation was used to characterize organic matter quality and phospholipid fatty acid analysis to detect major variation in decomposer communities. Non-acidic and acidic heaths differed substantially in vegetation composition, and these disparities were associated with congruent shifts in soil organic matter and microbial communities. A high proportion of forbs in the vegetation was positively associated with low C:N and high soluble N:phenolics ratios in soil organic matter, and a high proportion of bacteria in the microbial community. On the contrary, dwarf shrub-rich vegetation was associated with high C:N and low soluble N:phenolics ratios, and a high proportion of fungi in the microbial community. Our study demonstrates a strong link between the plant community composition, soil organic matter quality, and microbial community composition, and that differences in one compartment are paralleled by changes in others. Variation in the forb-shrub gradient of vegetation may largely dictate variations in the chemical quality of organic matter and decomposer communities in tundra ecosystems. Soil pH, through its direct and indirect effects on plant and microbial communities, seems to function as an ultimate environmental driver that gives rise to and amplifies the interactions between above- and belowground systems.

  1. Risk assessment for selected xenobiotics by bioassay methods with higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Günther, Petra; Pestemer, Wilfried

    1990-05-01

    Different bioassays with higher plants were approved for use in a bioassay procedure for testing of xenobiotics according to the German Chemicals Act. Selected environmental pollutants (atrazine, cadmium chloride, 2,6-dichlorobenzonitrile, pentachlorophenol, potassium dichromate, thiourea), all from a list of reference chemicals, were tested with these methods. Dose-response curves for growth of oats and turnips were evaluated in soil and vermiculite (nonsorptive substrate), and availability to plants was calculated by comparing the EC50 values for one chemical in both substrates. The most active chemical was atrazine, followed by 2,6-dichlorobenzonitrile, pentachlorophenol, potassium dichromate, cadmium chloride, and thiourea. The least available compound to plants was pentachlorophenol, tested with turnips ( Brassica rapa var. rapa). The strongest inhibition of germination, demonstrated in an in vitro assay with garden cress ( Lepidium sativum), was found with 2,6-dichlorobenzonitrile, the lowest with atrazine. The effect of an extended exposure of the plants to the chemicals was evaluated in a long-term bioassay with oats ( Avena sativa) in hydroponic culture. Several dose-response curves during the growing period were derived. It was found that the EC50 values for atrazine and thiourea decreased markedly during the first four weeks; thereafter the changes were much smaller. As an overall conclusion, a bioassay procedure is proposed that can be included in the graduated plan recommended by the German Chemicals Act.

  2. Interaction of higher plant (jute), electrofused bacteria and mycorrhiza on anthracene biodegradation.

    PubMed

    Cheung, K C; Zhang, J Y; Deng, H H; Ou, Y K; Leung, H M; Wu, S C; Wong, M H

    2008-05-01

    The interaction of bacteria, mycorrhiza and jute (Corchotus capsulari, a higher plant) to reduce anthracene in different concentrations of spiked soils was investigated. Dominant indigenous bacterium (Pseudomonas sp.) isolated in the rhizosphere of jute was electrofused with anthracene degraders (Sphingomonas paucimobilis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) which were able to produce different types of biosurfactants. The highest population (56 x 10(5)CFU/g) was found in the planted soil with the inoculation of mixtures of electrofused anthracene degraders after 7 days. The growth of anthracene degraders in the spiked soil was improved by gene transfer from indigenous bacteria. After 35 days, enhanced anthracene removals were observed in inoculated soils planted with jute (65.5-75.2%) compared with unplanted soil without inoculation (12.5%). The interaction of jute and electrofused S. paucimobilis enabled the greatest reduction of soil anthracene with or without the addition of P. aeruginosa. Mycorrhizal colonization was not significantly inhibited by anthracene in soils up to 150 mg/kg. Inoculation of jute with Glomus mosseae and Glomus intraradices improved plant growth and enhanced anthracene removal in the presence of electrofused S. paucimobilis.

  3. Assessment of organochlorine pesticides residues in higher plants from oil exploration areas of Niger Delta, Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Sojinu, O Samuel; Sonibare, Oluwadayo O; Ekundayo, Olusegun O; Zeng, Eddy Y

    2012-09-01

    The concentrations and distributions of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in some higher plant samples collected from oil exploration areas of the Niger Delta, Nigeria were examined. The concentrations of Σ(25)OCP ranged from 82 to 424, 44 to 200 , 34 to 358, 33 to 106 and 16 to 75 ng/g in Olomoro, Oginni, Uzere, Irri and Calabar plants, respectively. The compositional profiles of the analysed OCPs in most of the plants showed no fresh inputs in the area. The OCPs detected in the samples could have resulted from pesticide usage for intense farming activities cum the use of pesticides to control household pests and insects in the area. Drilling fluids and corrosion inhibitors used in petroleum explorations also have chlorinated compounds as additives thereby serving as potential sources of OCPs. Among the studied plants, elephant grass showed high bioaccumulation and phytoremediation potentials of OCPs. The ΣHCH concentrations exceeded the allowable daily intake limit thereby serving as potential threat to humans.

  4. Membrane trafficking in higher plant cells: GFP and antibodies, partners for probing the secretory pathway.

    PubMed

    Satiat-Jeunemaitre, B; Boevink, P; Hawes, C

    1999-06-01

    Eukaryotic cells are characterised by the organised distribution of membrane bounded compartments in their cytoplasm. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and the Golgi apparatus (GA) are part of this endomembrane machinery. They are involved in protein flow, and are in charge of specific functions such as the assembly, sorting and transport of newly synthesised proteins, glycoproteins or polysaccharides to their final destination, where the macromolecules are recognised either for action, storage, deposition or degradation. The structural and functional relationship between the ER and GA in higher plants is still a matter of debate. Therefore, it was essential to develop probes that would specifically label proteins or glycoproteins of the endomembrane system in situ. Here we compare two complementary approaches to probe plant endomembranes; immunocytochemistry on fixed cells, and in vivo studies using the expression of GFP tagged chimeric proteins. The structural relationship between ER and GA as based on pharmacological approaches using the two systems is explored.

  5. [Dynamics of cytoskeleton microtubules in higher plant meiosis. II. Perinuclear band formation].

    PubMed

    Shamina, N V; Dorogova, N V; Seriukova, E G

    2003-01-01

    Analyses of correspondent meiotic abnormalities is a good tool for studying cytoskeletal rearrangements during plant cell division. The paper reports on the wheat x wheatgrass F1 hybrids, showing various abnormalities during organization of the prophase perinuclear band of microtubules (PNB) in male meiosis. Based on these data, it may be concluded that the perinuclear system of microtubules (MT) in higher plant meiosis is formed from fibrils of the radial system as a result of their translocation in the cell cytoplasm space. According to our data, at this stage the radial MT arrays pass through the following consequence of events: separating from the nuclear envelope, 2) approaching, 3) tangential orientation to the nuclear surface, 4) bending, 5) co-orientation, lateral interaction. As a result, a flat ring of well organized concentric bent MT bundles encircling the nucleus meridionally is organized.

  6. Regulation of chloroplast number and DNA synthesis in higher plants. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Mullet, J.E.

    1995-11-10

    The long term objective of this research is to understand the process of chloroplast development and its coordination with leaf development in higher plants. This is important because the photosynthetic capacity of plants is directly related to leaf and chloroplast development. This research focuses on obtaining a detailed description of leaf development and the early steps in chloroplast development including activation of plastid DNA synthesis, changes in plastid DNA copy number, activation of chloroplast transcription and increases in plastid number per cell. The grant will also begin analysis of specific biochemical mechanisms by isolation of the plastid DNA polymerase, and identification of genetic mutants which are altered in their accumulation of plastid DNA and plastid number per cell.

  7. Regulation of chloroplast number and DNA synthesis in higher plants. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Mullet, J.E.

    1995-11-10

    The long term objective of this research is to understand the process of chloroplast development and its coordination with leaf development in higher plants. This is important because the photosynthetic capacity of plants is directly related to leaf and chloroplast development. This research focuses on obtaining a detailing description of leaf development and the early steps in chloroplast development including activation of plastid DNA synthesis, changes in plastid DNA copy number, activation of chloroplast transcription and increases in plastid number per cell. The grant will also begin analysis of specific biochemical mechanisms by isolation of the plastid DNA polymerase, and identification of genetic mutants which are altered in their accumulation of plastid DNA and plastid number per cell.

  8. Sterol Biosynthesis in Sub-Cellular Particles of Higher Plants 1

    PubMed Central

    Knapp, F. F.; Aexel, R. T.; Nicholas, H. J.

    1969-01-01

    Mevalonic acid-2-14C was administered to cut stems of bean seedlings (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) for time intervals varying from 20 min to 24 hr. The plants were homogenized in a pH 7.8 tris-sucrose buffer and the homogenates separated into chloroplast, mitochondrial, microsomal, and supernatant fractions by means of differential centrifugation. The distribution of radioactivity into non-saponifiable material in each of the fractions was then determined. After short incubation periods labeled squalene was localized in the supernatant fraction. Labeled sterol was limited at all incubation periods to the microsomal and supernatant fractions. The data presented clearly implicate the microsomal and supernatant fractions in sterol biosynthesis in higher plants. PMID:16657081

  9. Advancements in mass spectrometry for biological samples: Protein chemical cross-linking and metabolite analysis of plant tissues

    SciTech Connect

    Klein, Adam

    2015-01-01

    This thesis presents work on advancements and applications of methodology for the analysis of biological samples using mass spectrometry. Included in this work are improvements to chemical cross-linking mass spectrometry (CXMS) for the study of protein structures and mass spectrometry imaging and quantitative analysis to study plant metabolites. Applications include using matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-mass spectrometry imaging (MALDI-MSI) to further explore metabolic heterogeneity in plant tissues and chemical interactions at the interface between plants and pests. Additional work was focused on developing liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) methods to investigate metabolites associated with plant-pest interactions.

  10. Quantification and Localization of S-Nitrosothiols (SNOs) in Higher Plants.

    PubMed

    Barroso, Juan B; Valderrama, Raquel; Carreras, Alfonso; Chaki, Mounira; Begara-Morales, Juan C; Sánchez-Calvo, Beatriz; Corpas, Francisco J

    2016-01-01

    S-nitrosothiols (SNOs) are a family of molecules produced by the reaction of nitric oxide (NO) with -SH thiol groups present in the cysteine residues of proteins and peptides caused by a posttranslational modification (PTM) known as S-nitrosylation (strictly speaking S-nitrosation) that can affect the cellular function of proteins. These molecules are a relatively more stable form of NO and consequently can act as a major intracellular NO reservoir and, in some cases, as a long-distance NO signal. Additionally, SNOs can be transferred between small peptides and protein thiol groups through S-transnitrosylation mechanisms. Thus, detection and cellular localization of SNOs in plant cells can be useful tools to determine how these molecules are modulated under physiological and adverse conditions and to determine their importance as a mechanism for regulating different biochemical pathways. Using a highly sensitive chemiluminescence ozone technique and a specific fluorescence probe (Alexa Fluor 488 Hg-link phenylmercury), the methods described in this chapter enable us to determine SNOs in an nM range as well as their cellular distribution in the tissues of different plant species.

  11. Reorganization of microtubules in endosperm cells and cell fragments of the higher plant Haemanthus in vivo

    PubMed Central

    1986-01-01

    The reorganization of the microtubular meshwork was studied in intact Haemanthus endosperm cells and cell fragments (cytoplasts). This higher plant tissue is devoid of a known microtubule organizating organelle. Observations on living cells were correlated with microtubule arrangements visualized with the immunogold method. In small fragments, reorganization did not proceed. In medium and large sized fragments, microtubular converging centers formed first. Then these converging centers reorganized into either closed bushy microtubular spiral or chromosome-free cytoplasmic spindles/phragmoplasts. Therefore, the final shape of organized microtubular structures, including spindle shaped, was determined by the initial size of the cell fragments and could be achieved without chromosomes or centrioles. Converging centers elongate due to the formation of additional structures resembling microtubular fir trees. These structures were observed at the pole of the microtubular converging center in anucleate fragments, accessory phragmoplasts in nucleated cells, and in the polar region of the mitotic spindle during anaphase. Therefore, during anaphase pronounced assembly of new microtubules occurs at the polar region of acentriolar spindles. Moreover, statistical analysis demonstrated that during the first two-thirds of anaphase, when chromosomes move with an approximately constant speed, kinetochore fibers shorten, while the length of the kinetochore fiber complex remains constant due to the simultaneous elongation of their integral parts (microtubular fir trees). The half-spindle shortens only during the last one-third of anaphase. These data contradict the presently prevailing view that chromosome-to-pole movements in acentriolar spindles of higher plants are concurrent with the shortening of the half-spindle, the self- reorganizing property of higher plant microtubules (tubulin) in vivo. It may be specific for cells without centrosomes and may be superimposed also on other

  12. Early diagenetic transformation of higher-plant triterpenoids in deep-sea sediments from Baffin Bay

    SciTech Connect

    Ten Haven, H.L. Inst. Francais du Petrole, Rueil-Malmaison ); Peakman, T.M. ); Rullkoetter, J. )

    1992-05-01

    A sediment sequence of early Miocene to Holocene from Ocean Drilling Program Site 645 in central Baffin Bay was found to contain abundant triterpenoids of higher-plant origin including mono-desmethyl derivatives and other oxidative degradation products. 24-nor-triterpenoids of the oleanene, ursene, and lupane series were found in the nonaromatic hydrocarbon and alcohol fractions of the sediment extracts. Other diagenetic transformation products included 24,28-dinor-olean-17-ene and 24-nor-urs-12-en-11-one as well as their tentatively identified des-A counterparts. The identification of these novel degradation products was confirmed by synthesis of a suite of reference compounds. The simple reaction sequence applied to obtain 24-nor-urs-12-ene-from 3{alpha}-acetoxyurs-12-en-24-oic acid is likely to happen in a similar manner during early diagenesis of organic matter in nature. These results have implications for the understanding of the diagenetic reaction sequence leading to the formation of other demethylated triterpenoids of terrigenous origin (e.g., 24,28-dinor-lupanes). 28,30-dinot-17{alpha}-hopane is sometimes the dominant hydrocarbon in the most deeply buried samples. Its co-occurrence with higher plant triterpenoids and the low abundance of other regular hopanoids is not considered an indication, however, that 28,20-dinor-17{alpha}-hopane is derived from a higher plant precursor molecule. It is suggested that two independent sedimentary processes are responsible for the presence of the two types of demethylated triterpenoids observed in Baffin Bay sediments.

  13. Understanding water deficit stress-induced changes in the basic metabolism of higher plants - biotechnologically and sustainably improving agriculture and the ecoenvironment in arid regions of the globe.

    PubMed

    Shao, Hong-Bo; Chu, Li-Ye; Jaleel, C Abdul; Manivannan, P; Panneerselvam, R; Shao, Ming-An

    2009-01-01

    Water is vital for plant growth, development and productivity. Permanent or temporary water deficit stress limits the growth and distribution of natural and artificial vegetation and the performance of cultivated plants (crops) more than any other environmental factor. Productive and sustainable agriculture necessitates growing plants (crops) in arid and semiarid regions with less input of precious resources such as fresh water. For a better understanding and rapid improvement of soil-water stress tolerance in these regions, especially in the water-wind eroded crossing region, it is very important to link physiological and biochemical studies to molecular work in genetically tractable model plants and important native plants, and further extending them to practical ecological restoration and efficient crop production. Although basic studies and practices aimed at improving soil water stress resistance and plant water use efficiency have been carried out for many years, the mechanisms involved at different scales are still not clear. Further understanding and manipulating soil-plant water relationships and soil-water stress tolerance at the scales of ecology, physiology and molecular biology can significantly improve plant productivity and environmental quality. Currently, post-genomics and metabolomics are very important in exploring anti-drought gene resources in various life forms, but modern agriculturally sustainable development must be combined with plant physiological measures in the field, on the basis of which post-genomics and metabolomics have further practical prospects. In this review, we discuss physiological and molecular insights and effects in basic plant metabolism, drought tolerance strategies under drought conditions in higher plants for sustainable agriculture and ecoenvironments in arid and semiarid areas of the world. We conclude that biological measures are the bases for the solutions to the issues relating to the different types of

  14. Studies on the chalcone synthase gene of two higher plants: petroselinum hortense and matthiola incana

    SciTech Connect

    Hemleben, V.; Frey, M.; Rall, S.; Koch, M.; Kittel, M.; Kreuzaler, F.; Ragg, H.; Fautz, E.; Hahlbrock, K.

    1982-01-01

    Two higher plant systems are presented which allow to study coordinated gene expression of the light-induced metabolic pathway of flavonoid biosynthesis: tissue culture cells of Petroselinum hortense (Apiaceae) and different developmental stages of various genotypes of Matthiola incana (Brassicaceae). The gene structure of the chalcone synthase is mainly studied. A cDNA clone (pLF56) of parsley has been constructed and characterized conferring the chalcone synthase gene sequence. Strong cross hybridization between the parsley cDNA and Matthiola DNA allowed to identify a HindIII fragment (6000 bp) identical in size for parsley and different Matthiola wild type lines and a mutant line.

  15. FrontiERs: movers and shapers of the higher plant cortical endoplasmic reticulum.

    PubMed

    Sparkes, Imogen; Hawes, Chris; Frigerio, Lorenzo

    2011-12-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in higher plants performs many important functions, yet our understanding of how its intricate network shape and dynamics relate to function is very limited. Recent work has begun to unpick key molecular players in the generation of the pleomorphic, highly dynamic ER network structure that pervades the entire cytoplasm. ER movement is acto-myosin dependent. ER shape is dependent on RHD3 (Root Hair Defective 3) and a family of proteins called reticulons. The major challenge that lies ahead is understanding how factors that control ER shape and movement are regulated and how this relates to the numerous functions of the ER.

  16. Design and implementation of components for a bioregenerative system for growing higher order plants in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brakman, B.; Dioso, L.; Parker, D.; Segal, L.; Merriman, C.; Howard, I.; Vu, H.; Anderson, K.; Riley, S.; Amery, D.

    1989-01-01

    This report summarizes the efforts of the NASA/USRA Advanced Design Program during the 1988-89 scholastic year. The primary goal was to address specific needs in the design of an integrated system to grow higher order plants in space. The initial phase of the design effort concentrated on studying such a system and identifying its needs. Once these needs were defined, emphasis was placed on the design and fabrication of devices to meet them. Specific attention was placed on a hand-held harvester, a nutrient concentration sensor, an air-water separator, and a closed-loop biological system simulation.

  17. Seed sprout production: Consumables and a foundation for higher plant growth in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Day, Michelle; Thomas, Terri; Johnson, Steve; Luttges, Marvin

    1990-01-01

    Seed sprouts can be produced as a source of fresh vegetable materials and as higher plant seedlings in space. Sprout production was undertaken to evaluate the mass accumulations possible, the technologies needed, and the reliability of the overall process. Baseline experiments corroborated the utility of sprout production protocols for a variety of seed types. The automated delivery of saturated humidity effectively supplants labor intensive manual soaking techniques. Automated humidification also lend itself to modest centrifugal sprout growth environments. A small amount of ultraviolet radiation effectively suppressed bacterial and fungal contamination, and the sprouts were suitable for consumption.

  18. Role of Ca[sup ++]/calmodulin in the regulation of microtubules in higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Cyr, R.

    1991-01-01

    This work is aimed at defining the role of calcium/calmodulin in regulating cortical microtubules (MTS) in higher plants. Recent thrust has been to define the effects of calcium upon microtubules in vivo. Using lysed protoplasts, we noted Mts are destabilized by calcium/calmodulin. This effect could be the result of gross depolymerization induced by Ca[sup ++]/calmodulin, or by an increase in the dynamic flux rate. Intact protoplasts exposed to high (10 mM) levels of calcium (which would be expected to increase intercellular calcium levels) contained microtubules that were hypersensitive to Mt inhibitors, compared to control protoplasts exposed to low calcium environments.

  19. A new and unified nomenclature for male fertility restorer (RF) proteins in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Kotchoni, Simeon O; Jimenez-Lopez, Jose C; Gachomo, Emma W; Seufferheld, Manfredo J

    2010-12-28

    The male fertility restorer (RF) proteins belong to extended protein families associated with the cytoplasmic male sterility in higher plants. Up till now, there is no devised nomenclature for naming the RF proteins. The systematic sequencing of new plant species in recent years has uncovered the existence of several novel RF genes and their encoded proteins. Their naming has been simply arbitrary and could not be adequately handled in the context of comparative functional genomics. We propose in this study a unified nomenclature for the RF extended protein families across all plant species. This new and unified nomenclature relies upon previously developed nomenclature for the first ever characterized RF gene, RF2A/ALDH2B2, a member of ALDH gene superfamily, and adheres to the guidelines issued by the ALDH Genome Nomenclature Committees. The proposed nomenclature reveals that RF gene superfamily encodes currently members of 51 families. This unified nomenclature accommodates functional RF genes and pseudogenes, and offers the flexibility needed to incorporate additional RFs as they become available in future. In addition, we provide a phylogenetic relationship between the RF extended families and use computational protein modeling to demonstrate the high divergence of RF functional specializations through specific structural features of selected members of RF superfamily.

  20. Nuclearly encoded splicing factors implicated in RNA splicing in higher plant organelles.

    PubMed

    de Longevialle, Andéol Falcon; Small, Ian D; Lurin, Claire

    2010-07-01

    Plant organelles arose from two independent endosymbiosis events. Throughout evolutionary history, tight control of chloroplasts and mitochondria has been gained by the nucleus, which regulates most steps of organelle genome expression and metabolism. In particular, RNA maturation, including RNA splicing, is highly dependent on nuclearly encoded splicing factors. Most introns in organelles are group II introns, whose catalytic mechanism closely resembles that of the nuclear spliceosome. Plant group II introns have lost the ability to self-splice in vivo and require nuclearly encoded proteins as cofactors. Since the first splicing factor was identified in chloroplasts more than 10 years ago, many other proteins have been shown to be involved in splicing of one or more introns in chloroplasts or mitochondria. These new proteins belong to a variety of different families of RNA binding proteins and provide new insights into ribonucleo-protein complexes and RNA splicing machineries in organelles. In this review, we describe how splicing factors, encoded by the nucleus and targeted to the organelles, take part in post-transcriptional steps in higher plant organelle gene expression. We go on to discuss the potential for these factors to regulate organelle gene expression.

  1. Scaling of respiration to nitrogen in leaves, stems and roots of higher land plants.

    PubMed

    Reich, Peter B; Tjoelker, Mark G; Pregitzer, Kurt S; Wright, Ian J; Oleksyn, Jacek; Machado, Jose-Luis

    2008-08-01

    Using a database of 2510 measurements from 287 species, we assessed whether general relationships exist between mass-based dark respiration rate and nitrogen concentration for stems and roots, and if they do, whether they are similar to those for leaves. The results demonstrate strong respiration-nitrogen scaling relationships for all observations and for data averaged by species; for roots, stems and leaves examined separately; and for life-forms (woody, herbaceous plants) and phylogenetic groups (angiosperms, gymnosperms) considered separately. No consistent differences in the slopes of these log-log scaling relations were observed among organs or among plant groups, but respiration rates at any common nitrogen concentration were consistently lower on average in leaves than in stems or roots, indicating that organ-specific relationships should be used in models that simulate respiration based on tissue nitrogen concentrations. The results demonstrate both common and divergent aspects of tissue-level respiration-nitrogen scaling for leaves, stems and roots across higher land plants, which are important in their own right and for their utility in modelling carbon fluxes at local to global scales.

  2. Composition, architecture and dynamics of the photosynthetic apparatus in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Nevo, Reinat; Charuvi, Dana; Tsabari, Onie; Reich, Ziv

    2012-04-01

    The process of oxygenic photosynthesis enabled and still sustains aerobic life on Earth. The most elaborate form of the apparatus that carries out the primary steps of this vital process is the one present in higher plants. Here, we review the overall composition and supramolecular organization of this apparatus, as well as the complex architecture of the lamellar system within which it is harbored. Along the way, we refer to the genetic, biochemical, spectroscopic and, in particular, microscopic studies that have been employed to elucidate the structure and working of this remarkable molecular energy conversion device. As an example of the highly dynamic nature of the apparatus, we discuss the molecular and structural events that enable it to maintain high photosynthetic yields under fluctuating light conditions. We conclude the review with a summary of the hypotheses made over the years about the driving forces that underlie the partition of the lamellar system of higher plants and certain green algae into appressed and non-appressed membrane domains and the segregation of the photosynthetic protein complexes within these domains.

  3. Cyanide metabolism in higher plants: cyanoalanine hydratase is a NIT4 homolog.

    PubMed

    Piotrowski, Markus; Volmer, Julia Jutta

    2006-05-01

    Cyanoalanine hydratase (E.C. 4.2.1.65) is an enzyme involved in the cyanide detoxification pathway of higher plants and catalyzes the hydrolysis of beta-cyano-L-alanine to asparagine. We have isolated the enzyme from seedlings of blue lupine (Lupinus angustifolius) to obtain protein sequence information for molecular cloning. In contrast to earlier reports, extracts of blue lupine cotyledons were found also to contain cyanoalanine-nitrilase (E.C. 3.5.5.4) activity, resulting in aspartic acid production. Both activities co-elute during isolation of cyanoalanine hydratase and are co-precipitated by an antibody directed against Arabidopsis thaliana nitrilase 4 (NIT4). The isolated cyanoalanine hydratase was sequenced by nanospray-MS/MS and shown to be a homolog of Arabidopsis thaliana and Nicotiana tabacum NIT4. Full-length cDNA sequences for two NIT4 homologs from blue lupine were obtained by PCR using degenerate primers and RACE-experiments. The recombinant LaNIT4 enzymes, like Arabidopsis NIT4, hydrolyze cyanoalanine to asparagine and aspartic acid but show a much higher cyanoalanine-hydratase activity. The two nitrilase genes displayed differential but overlapping expression. Taken together these data show that the so-called 'cyanoalanine hydratase' of plants is not a bacterial type nitrile hydratase enzyme but a nitrilase enzyme which can have a remarkably high nitrile-hydratase activity.

  4. Soluble, highly fluorescent variants of green fluorescent protein (GFP) for use in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Davis, S J; Vierstra, R D

    1998-03-01

    Green fluorescent protein (GFP) from Aequorea victoria has rapidly become a standard reporter in many biological systems. However, the use of GFP in higher plants has been limited by aberrant splicing of the corresponding mRNA and by protein insolubility. It has been shown that GFP can be expressed in Arabidopsis thaliana after altering the codon usage in the region that is incorrectly spliced, but the fluorescence signal is weak, possibly due to aggregation of the encoded protein. Through site-directed mutagenesis, we have generated a more soluble version of the codon-modified GFP called soluble-modified GFP (smGFP). The excitation and emission spectra for this protein are nearly identical to wild-type GFP. When introduced into A. thaliana, greater fluorescence was observed compared to the codon-modified GFP, implying that smGFP is 'brighter' because more of it is present in a soluble and functional form. Using the smGFP template, two spectral variants were created, a soluble-modified red-shifted GFP (smRS-GFP) and a soluble-modified blue-fluorescent protein (smBFP). The increased fluorescence output of smGFP will further the use of this reporter in higher plants. In addition, the distinct spectral characters of smRS-GFP and smBFP should allow for dual monitoring of gene expression, protein localization, and detection of in vivo protein-protein interactions.

  5. Influence of gaseous contaminants in the atmosphere of ISS on growth and development of higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levinskikh, Margarita; Sychev, Vladimir; Podolsky, Igor; Moukhamedieva, Lana; Gostimskiy, Sergey; Bingham, Gail

    Continues exploitation of pressurized manned objects revealed that artificial gaseous atmosphere is a multi-component mixture containing adverse micro-dirt consisted of 14 classes of chemical compounds (Moukhamedieva, 2003). Dynamics of descendant process depend on duration of pressurized object utilization, resources of life support (e.g. level of closeness), parameters of microclimate and experimental tasks conducted by a crew. Previously it was shown that composition of gas environment of the space station remarkably altered growth and development of higher plants (Levinskikh et al., 2000). Specifically, it was found that the main changes in productivity and morphometric characteristics of the spaceflight plants of superdwarf wheat were caused by phytotoxic effect of ethylene (1,1-2,0 mg/m3) in the atmosphere of MIR orbital station. From 2003 to April, 2007 we have conducted 7 experiments focused on cultivation of dwarf peas in space greenhouse LADA onboard International Space Station (ISS-6-10, 12, 14). Results of the first 5 experiments showed that characteristics of growth and development of the peas planted in the space greenhouse had no differences if compared with ground control variants. In the similar experiments with peas during ISS-12 and ISS-14 it was found that total and seed productions of the plants were lower than ones of the previous experiments and ones of the ground controls. Cytological analysis of roots of the space seeds for the first time revealed significant increase of chromosomal aberrations in comparison with laboratory controls Analysis of total contamination of the atmosphere of the ISS by gaseous dirt showed consistent (starting from ISS-11) increasing of the toxicity coefficient (Kt). W e suppose that the accumulation of pollutant in the atmosphere of ISS is the main reason causing general decreasing of productivity and increasing of the number of chromosomal aberrations in the peas cultivated in space greenhouse LADA at the stage

  6. Linking Turgor with ABA Biosynthesis: Implications for Stomatal Responses to Vapor Pressure Deficit across Land Plants.

    PubMed

    McAdam, Scott A M; Brodribb, Timothy J

    2016-07-01

    Stomatal responses to changes in vapor pressure deficit (VPD) constitute the predominant form of daytime gas-exchange regulation in plants. Stomatal closure in response to increased VPD is driven by the rapid up-regulation of foliar abscisic acid (ABA) biosynthesis and ABA levels in angiosperms; however, very little is known about the physiological trigger for this increase in ABA biosynthesis at increased VPD Using a novel method of modifying leaf cell turgor by the application of external pressures, we test whether changes in turgor pressure can trigger increases in foliar ABA levels over 20 min, a period of time most relevant to the stomatal response to VPD We found in angiosperm species that the biosynthesis of ABA was triggered by reductions in leaf turgor, and in two species tested, that a higher sensitivity of ABA synthesis to leaf turgor corresponded with a higher stomatal sensitivity to VPD In contrast, representative species from nonflowering plant lineages did not show a rapid turgor-triggered increase in foliar ABA levels, which is consistent with previous studies demonstrating passive stomatal responses to changes in VPD in these lineages. Our method provides a new tool for characterizing the response of stomata to water availability.

  7. Bridging Multiple Lines Of Evidence To Quantify Plant Phenology And Assess Links To Dryland Ecosystem Function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Browning, D. M.; Tweedie, C. E.; Vivoni, E. R.; Maynard, J. J.; Karl, J.

    2015-12-01

    The clear and pressing need to reliably identify and predict shifts in plant phenology at landscape scales requires a critical link between mechanistic understanding of climate drivers and broad scale forecasts of plant responses to climate change. A multi-scale phenology study co-located with two eddy covariance towers was initiated on the Jornada Basin LTER in New Mexico in 2010 to bridge phenology patterns at the plant level with those representing aggregated signals at the landscape level. The study integrates phenology observations collected in the field along with those collected via remotely using imagery from phenocams, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and satellite sensors along with estimates of carbon flux. We applied the Breaks for Additive Seasonal and Trend (BFAST) time series algorithm to MODIS 250-m NDVI greenness index values to partition the NDVI signal into components representing the long-term trend, seasonal periodicity, and residuals and identified significant shifts in the NDVI signal (i.e., "breaks"). Previous work verified breaks representing significant deviations from the BFAST seasonal and trend models using field-estimated plant biomass collected between 2000 and 2014. We subsequently examine estimates of fractional cover by functional group derived from UAV images acquired 2010 through 2015. At a mixed grassland site, the BFAST algorithm detected four breaks in the trend model denoting significant increases in NDVI in May 2004, July 2006, and March 2010 and a significant decrease in May 2012. The 2004 and 2006 breaks corresponded to herbaceous vegetation responses to rainfall following prolonged periods of drought. The 2012 decrease in NDVI corresponded to the marked reduction of herbaceous biomass following an exceptionally dry period in late 2010-2011. Seasonal breaks representing changes in the timing and magnitude of NDVI identified in July 2006 and September 2008 coincide with rapid increases in production of annual species in

  8. Regulation of sucrose metabolism in higher plants: localization and regulation of activity of key enzymes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Winter, H.; Huber, S. C.; Brown, C. S. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    Sucrose (Suc) plays a central role in plant growth and development. It is a major end product of photosynthesis and functions as a primary transport sugar and in some cases as a direct or indirect regulator of gene expression. Research during the last 2 decades has identified the pathways involved and which enzymes contribute to the control of flux. Availability of metabolites for Suc synthesis and 'demand' for products of sucrose degradation are important factors, but this review specifically focuses on the biosynthetic enzyme sucrose-phosphate synthase (SPS), and the degradative enzymes, sucrose synthase (SuSy), and the invertases. Recent progress has included the cloning of genes encoding these enzymes and the elucidation of posttranslational regulatory mechanisms. Protein phosphorylation is emerging as an important mechanism controlling SPS activity in response to various environmental and endogenous signals. In terms of Suc degradation, invertase-catalyzed hydrolysis generally has been associated with cell expansion, whereas SuSy-catalyzed metabolism has been linked with biosynthetic processes (e.g., cell wall or storage products). Recent results indicate that SuSy may be localized in multiple cellular compartments: (1) as a soluble enzyme in the cytosol (as traditionally assumed); (2) associated with the plasma membrane; and (3) associated with the actin cytoskeleton. Phosphorylation of SuSy has been shown to occur and may be one of the factors controlling localization of the enzyme. The purpose of this review is to summarize some of the recent developments relating to regulation of activity and localization of key enzymes involved in sucrose metabolism in plants.

  9. Some effects of high- gradient magnetic field on tropism of roots of higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kondrachuk, A.; Belyavskaya, N.

    The perception of gravity in living organisms is mostly based on the response of the gravisensing system to displacement of some specific mass caused by gravitational force. According to the starch-statolith hypothesis the amyloplasts play the role of specific mass in gravisensing cells of higher plants. Kuznetsov & Hasenstein (1996) have demonstrated that the high-gradient magnetic field (HGMF) exerts a directional ponderomotive force on diamagnetic substances, in particular, statoliths. This effect of the HGMF causes root response similar to that produced by the change in gravity vector. Their studies supported the starch-statolith hypothesis and showed that ponderomotive force can be used to modify force acting on statoliths by manipulating statolith locations within gravisensing cells. We have designed the HGMF facility that allows for generating the HGMF and analyzing its effects on higher plants' roots. It records by videosystem and measures with the help of image analysis software the parameters of kinetics of root bending under both the HGMF action and gravistimulation. Two species of plants (pea and cress) have been examined. The main results of the work are the following: 1) The magnetotropic effect of HGMF on root growth was found for both species. 2) The critical value of ponderomotive force that caused the magnetotropic effect was estimated by modeling the magnetic field spatial distribution in the region of root apex. 3) The electron-microscopic analysis of statocytes after the HGMF treatment was carried out. The displacement of amyloplasts in root statocytes of two species of plants in HGMF was firstly demonstrated at the ultrastructural level. 4) Spatial distribution of exogenous proton fluxes (pH) along the roots was studied. The changes in pH distribution along curvature zone and apices of roots were revealed in the HGMF. It is known that application of HGMFs or strong uniform magnetic fields may influence ion transport due to Ampere force. It

  10. The coordination of leaf photosynthesis links C and N fluxes in C3 plant species.

    PubMed

    Maire, Vincent; Martre, Pierre; Kattge, Jens; Gastal, François; Esser, Gerd; Fontaine, Sébastien; Soussana, Jean-François

    2012-01-01

    Photosynthetic capacity is one of the most sensitive parameters in vegetation models and its relationship to leaf nitrogen content links the carbon and nitrogen cycles. Process understanding for reliably predicting photosynthetic capacity is still missing. To advance this understanding we have tested across C(3) plant species the coordination hypothesis, which assumes nitrogen allocation to photosynthetic processes such that photosynthesis tends to be co-limited by ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate (RuBP) carboxylation and regeneration. The coordination hypothesis yields an analytical solution to predict photosynthetic capacity and calculate area-based leaf nitrogen content (N(a)). The resulting model linking leaf photosynthesis, stomata conductance and nitrogen investment provides testable hypotheses about the physiological regulation of these processes. Based on a dataset of 293 observations for 31 species grown under a range of environmental conditions, we confirm the coordination hypothesis: under mean environmental conditions experienced by leaves during the preceding month, RuBP carboxylation equals RuBP regeneration. We identify three key parameters for photosynthetic coordination: specific leaf area and two photosynthetic traits (k(3), which modulates N investment and is the ratio of RuBP carboxylation/oxygenation capacity (V(Cmax)) to leaf photosynthetic N content (N(pa)); and J(fac), which modulates photosynthesis for a given k(3) and is the ratio of RuBP regeneration capacity (J(max)) to V(Cmax)). With species-specific parameter values of SLA, k(3) and J(fac), our leaf photosynthesis coordination model accounts for 93% of the total variance in N(a) across species and environmental conditions. A calibration by plant functional type of k(3) and J(fac) still leads to accurate model prediction of N(a), while SLA calibration is essentially required at species level. Observed variations in k(3) and J(fac) are partly explained by environmental and phylogenetic

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2012-04-01

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

  12. Multilayer interparticle linking hybrid MOF-199 for noninvasive enrichment and analysis of plant hormone ethylene.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Zhuomin; Huang, Yichun; Ding, Weiwei; Li, Gongke

    2014-04-01

    Ethylene, an important plant hormone, is of utmost importance during many developmental processes of plants. However, the efficient enrichment and analysis of trace ethylene still remains a challenge. A simple and mild multilayer interparticle linking strategy was proposed to fabricate a novel hybrid MOF-199 enrichment coating. Strong chemical interparticle linkages throughout the coating improved the durability and reproducibility of hybrid MOF-199 coating dramatically. This coating performed a significant extraction superiority of ethylene over commonly used commercial coatings, attributed to the multiple interactions including "molecular sieving effect", hydrogen bonding, open metal site interaction, and π-π affinity. The hybridization of multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) with MOF-199 further improved the enrichment capability and also acted as a hydrophobic "shield" to prevent the open metal sites of MOF-199 from being occupied by water molecules, which effectively improved the moisture-resistant property of MOF-199/CNTs coating. Finally, this novel enrichment method was successfully applied for the noninvasive analysis of trace ethylene, methanol, and ethanol from fruit samples with relatively high humidity. The low detection limit was 0.016 μg/L for ethylene. It was satisfactory that trace ethylene could be actually detected from fruit samples by this noninvasive method. Good recoveries of spiked grape, wampee, blueberry, and durian husk samples were obtained in the range of 90.0-114%, 79.4-88.6%, 78.5-86.8%, and 85.2-105% with the corresponding relative standard deviations of 4.8-9.8%, 6.9-8.9%, 3.8-8.1%, and 9.3-10.5% (n = 3), respectively.

  13. Electric Current Precedes Emergence of a Lateral Root in Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Hamada, Shingo; Ezaki, Shu; Hayashi, Kenshi; Toko, Kiyoshi; Yamafuji, Kaoru

    1992-01-01

    Stable electrochemical patterns appear spontaneously around roots of higher plants and are closely related to growth. An electric potential pattern accompanied by lateral root emergence was measured along the surface of the primary root of adzuki bean (Phaseolus angularis) over 21 h using a microelectrode manipulated by a newly developed apparatus. The electric potential became lower at the point where a lateral root emerged. This change preceded the emergence of the lateral root by about 10 h. A theory is presented for calculating two-dimensional patterns of electric potential and electric current density around the primary root (and a lateral root) using only data on the one-dimensional electric potential measured near the surface of the primary root. The development of the lateral root inside the primary root is associated with the influx of electric current of about 0.7 μA·cm−2 at the surface. Images Figure 7 PMID:16653036

  14. Roles of chloroplast RNA polymerase sigma factors in chloroplast development and stress response in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Kanamaru, Kengo; Tanaka, Kan

    2004-11-01

    Chloroplast transcription in higher plants is performed by two types of RNA polymerases, plastid-encoded RNA polymerase (PEP) and nuclear-encoded RNA polymerase (NEP). PEP is a eubacteria-type multisubunit enzyme whose catalytic core subunits are encoded by the chloroplast genome, whereas NEP is the nuclear encoded T7 phage-type single subunit enzyme. PEP is critical for the biogenesis and maintenance of chloroplasts, and is finely tuned by the nuclear encoded sigma subunits. Of the six Arabidopsis sigma subunits, SIG2 is involved in the transcription of several chloroplast tRNA genes, including trnE encoding tRNA-Glu. SIG2 possibly couples translation and pigment synthesis in chloroplasts. On the other hand, SIG5 is induced by various stresses and contributes to repair of damaged photosystem II (PSII) through transcription of the psbD and psbC genes. Thus target genes and the physiological role of each sigma subunit are becoming clearer.

  15. Structural Basis for Broad Substrate Specificity in Higher Plant β-d-Glucan Glucohydrolases

    PubMed Central

    Hrmova, Maria; De Gori, Ross; Smith, Brian J.; Fairweather, Jon K.; Driguez, Hugues; Varghese, Joseph N.; Fincher, Geoffrey B.

    2002-01-01

    Family 3 β-d-glucan glucohydrolases are distributed widely in higher plants. The enzymes catalyze the hydrolytic removal of β-d-glucosyl residues from nonreducing termini of a range of β-d-glucans and β-d-oligoglucosides. Their broad specificity can be explained by x-ray crystallographic data obtained from a barley β-d-glucan glucohydrolase in complex with nonhydrolyzable S-glycoside substrate analogs and by molecular modeling of enzyme/substrate complexes. The glucosyl residue that occupies binding subsite −1 is locked tightly into a fixed position through extensive hydrogen bonding with six amino acid residues near the bottom of an active site pocket. In contrast, the glucosyl residue at subsite +1 is located between two Trp residues at the entrance of the pocket, where it is constrained less tightly. The relative flexibility of binding at subsite +1, coupled with the projection of the remainder of bound substrate away from the enzyme's surface, means that the overall active site can accommodate a range of substrates with variable spatial dispositions of adjacent β-d-glucosyl residues. The broad specificity for glycosidic linkage type enables the enzyme to perform diverse functions during plant development. PMID:12034895

  16. A role for ethylene in the metabolism of cyanide by higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Goudey, J.S.; Tittle, F.L.; Spencer, M.S. )

    1989-04-01

    The action of ethylene on the capacity of plant tissues to metabolize cyanice to {beta}-cyanoalanine was examined. Beta-cyanoalanine synthase catalyzes the reaction between cyanide and cysteine to form {beta}-cyanoalanine and hydrogen sulfide. Levels of {beta}-cyanoalanine synthase activity in tissues of 6 day old etiolated pea (Pisum sativum) seedlings were enhanced severalfold by 1 microliter per liter ethylene. The promotive effect of ethylene increased with increasing ethylene concentrations from 0.01 to 100 microliters per liter and with the period of exposure from 3 to 24 hours. Ethylene enhanced {beta}-cyanoalanine synthase activity in all regions of the seedling (shoots and roots, internodal regions, cotyledons). The promotive effect was eliminated by norbornadiene, a competitive inhibitor of ethylene action. Levels of {beta}-cyanoalanine synthase in seedlings of four other dicots (Phaseolus aureas, Glycine max, Lactuca sativa, Sinapis arvensis) and two monocots (Hordeum vulgares, Triticum aestivum) were also increased in response to ethylene. Our results suggest an important regulatory role for ethylene in the metabolism of cyanide by higher plants.

  17. Growth and development in higher plants under simulated microgravity conditions on a 3-dimensional clinostat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shimazu, T.; Yuda, T.; Miyamoto, K.; Yamashita, M.; Ueda, J.

    Growth and development of etiolated pea (Pisum sativum L. cv. Alaska) and maize (Zea mays L. cv. Golden Cross Bantam) seedlings grown under simulated microgravity conditions were intensively studied using a 3-dimensional clinostat as a simulator of weightlessness. Epicotyls of etiolated pea seedlings grown on the clinostat were the most oriented toward the direction far from cotyledons. Mesocotyls of etiolated maize seedlings grew at random and coleoptiles curved slightly during clinostat rotation. Clinostat rotation promoted the emergence of the 3rd internodes in etiolated pea seedlings, while it significantly inhibited the growth of the 1st internodes. In maize seedlings, the growth of coleoptiles was little affected by clinostat rotation, but that of mesocotyls was suppressed, and therefore, the emergence of the leaf out of coleoptile was promoted. Clinostat rotation reduced the osmotic concentration in the 1st internodes of pea seedlings, although it has little effect on the 2nd and the 3rd internodes. Clinostat rotation also reduced the osmotic concentrations in both coleoptiles and mesocotyls of maize seedlings. Cell-wall extensibilities of the 1st and the 3rd internodes of pea seedlings grown on the clinostat were significantly lower and higher as compared with those on 1 g conditions, respectively. Cell-wall extensibility of mesocotyls in seedlings grown on the clinostat also decreased. Changes in cell wall properties seem to be well correlated to the growth of each organ in pea and maize seedlings. These results suggest that the growth and development of plants is controlled under gravity on earth, and that the growth responses of higher plants to microgravity conditions are regulated by both cell-wall mechanical properties and osmotic properties of stem cells.

  18. Higher plants as bioindicators of sulphur dioxide emissions in urban environments.

    PubMed

    Hijano, Concepción Fidalgo; Domínguez, Maria Dolores Petit; Gimínez, Rosario García; Sínchez, Pilar Hungría; García, Inís Sancho

    2005-12-01

    The evaluation of certain vascular plants that grow in the city of Madrid as biomonitors of SO(2) air pollution in urban environments has been carried out. Total concentration of sulphur in leaves of the chosen higher plants as well as other parameters in close relation to this contaminant (visible injury symptoms, chlorophyll a- and b-content and peroxidase activity) have been determined in order to study the spatial distribution and temporal changes in SO(2) deposition. Results obtained show that coniferous species such as Pinus pinea, were more sensitive to SO(2) atmospheric concentration than leafy species as Quercux ilex subspecies ballota and, in the same way, bush species, such as Pyracantha coccinea and Nerium oleander, were more sensitive than wooded species, such as Cedrus deodara and Pinus pinea, respectively. There is a higher accumulation of sulphur in vegetable species located near highways and dense traffic incidence roads and near areas with high density of population. The minimum values for accumulation of SO(2) were registered in winter and spring seasons (from January to April) due to the vegetative stop; while maximum values are obtained during the summer season (from June to September), due to the stoma opening. The highest increments in sulphur concentration, calculated as the difference between two consecutive months, are obtained in May and June for all considered species except for Cedrus deodara and Pyracantha coccinea, both species have few seasonal changes during the whole year. Some species are more sensitive to natural washing than others, showing a decrease in sulphur concentration after rainfall periods.

  19. Phragmoplast of the green alga Spirogyra is functionally distinct from the higher plant phragmoplast

    PubMed Central

    1995-01-01

    Cytokinesis in the green alga Spirogyra (Zygnemataceae) is characterized by centripetal growth of a septum, which impinges on a persistent, centrifugally expanding telophase spindle, leading to a phragmoplast-like structure of potential phylogenetic significance (Fowke, L. C., and J. D. Pickett-Heaps. 1969. J. Phycol. 5:273-281). Combining fluorescent tagging of the cytoskeleton in situ and video- enhanced differential interference contrast microscopy of live cells, the process of cytokinesis was investigated with emphasis on cytoskeletal reorganization and concomitant redistribution of organelles. Based on a sequence of cytoskeletal arrangements and the effects of cytoskeletal inhibitors thereon, cytokinetic progression could be divided into three functional stages with respect to the contribution of microfilaments (MFs) and microtubules (MTs): (1) Initiation: in early prophase, a cross wall initial was formed independently of MFs and MTs at the presumptive site of wall growth. (2) Septum ingrowth: numerous organelles accumulated at the cross wall initial concomitant with reorganization of the extensive peripheral interphase MF array into a distinct circumferential MF array. This array guided the ingrowing septum until it contacted the expanding interzonal MT array. (3) Cross wall closure: MFs at the growing edge of the septum coaligned with and extended along the interzonal MTs toward the daughter nuclei. Thus, actin-based transportation of small organelles during this third stage occurred, in part, along a scaffold previously deployed in space by MTs. Displacement of the nuclei- associated interzonal MT array by centrifugation and depolymerization of the phragmoplast-like structure showed that the success of cytokinesis at the third stage depends on the interaction of both MF and MT cytoskeletons. Important features of the phragmoplast-like structure in Spirogyra were different from the higher plant phragmoplast: in particular, MFs were responsible for the

  20. The Synthetic Elicitor 2-(5-Bromo-2-Hydroxy-Phenyl)-Thiazolidine-4-Carboxylic Acid Links Plant Immunity to Hormesis.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez-Salus, Melinda; Bektas, Yasemin; Schroeder, Mercedes; Knoth, Colleen; Vu, Trang; Roberts, Philip; Kaloshian, Isgouhi; Eulgem, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Synthetic elicitors are drug-like compounds that induce plant immune responses but are structurally distinct from natural defense elicitors. Using high-throughput screening, we previously identified 114 synthetic elicitors that activate the expression of a pathogen-responsive reporter gene in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). Here, we report on the characterization of one of these compounds, 2-(5-bromo-2-hydroxy-phenyl)-thiazolidine-4-carboxylic acid (BHTC). BHTC induces disease resistance of plants against bacterial, oomycete, and fungal pathogens and has a unique mode of action and structure. Surprisingly, we found that low doses of BHTC enhanced root growth in Arabidopsis, while high doses of this compound inhibited root growth, besides inducing defense. These effects are reminiscent of the hormetic response, which is characterized by low-dose stimulatory effects of a wide range of agents that are toxic or inhibitory at higher doses. Like its effects on defense, BHTC-induced hormesis in Arabidopsis roots is partially dependent on the WRKY70 transcription factor. Interestingly, BHTC-induced root hormesis is also affected in the auxin-response mutants axr1-3 and slr-1. By messenger RNA sequencing, we uncovered a dramatic difference between transcriptional profiles triggered by low and high doses of BHTC. Only high levels of BHTC induce typical defense-related transcriptional changes. Instead, low BHTC levels trigger a coordinated intercompartmental transcriptional response manifested in the suppression of photosynthesis- and respiration-related genes in the nucleus, chloroplasts, and mitochondria as well as the induction of development-related nuclear genes. Taken together, our functional characterization of BHTC links defense regulation to hormesis and provides a hypothetical transcriptional scenario for the induction of hormetic root growth.

  1. Concepts, strategies and potentials using hypo-g and other features of the space environment for commercialization using higher plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krikorian, A. D.

    1985-01-01

    Opportunities for releasing, capturing, constructing and/or fixing the differential expressions or response potentials of the higher plant genome in the hypo-g environment for commercialization are explored. General strategies include improved plant-growing, crop and forestry production systems which conserve soil, water, labor and energy resources, and nutritional partitioning and mobilization of nutrients and synthates. Tissue and cell culture techniques of commercial potential include the growing and manipulation of cultured plant cells in vitro in a bioreactor to produce biologicals and secondary plants of economic value. The facilitation of plant breeding, the cloning of specific pathogen-free materials, the elimination of growing point or apex viruses, and the increase of plant yield are other O-g applications. The space environment may be advantageous in somatic embryogenesis, the culture of alkaloids, and the development of completely new crop plant germ plasm.

  2. Distribution of drimane sesquiterpenoids and tocopherols in liverworts, ferns and higher plants: Polygonaceae, Canellaceae and Winteraceae species.

    PubMed

    Asakawa, Yoshinori; Ludwiczuk, Agnieszka; Harinantenaina, Liva; Toyota, Masao; Nishiki, Mayumi; Bardon, Alicia; Nii, Kaeko

    2012-06-01

    The liverwort, Porella vernicosa complex produces a very hot tasting polygodial, a drimane-type sesquiterpene dialdehyde. The same compound has been isolated from two ferns, Thelypteris hispidula and Blechnum fluviatile, as well as from the higher plants Polygonum hydropiper, P. hydropiper f. purpurascens (Polygonaceae), Cinnamosma, Caspicodendron, Canella and Warburgia species (Canellaceae), and Pseudowintera colorata, Tasmannia lanceolata, Drimys and Zygogynum species (Winteraceae). In addition, the liverworts and higher plants which elaborate polygodial and its related pungent drimane dials contain a small amount of alpha-tocopherol, gamma-tocopherol or delta-tocotrienol. The present paper gives the results of a comparative study on the drimane-type sesquiterpenoids in some liverworts, ferns and higher plants, and the role of tocopherols in these plant groups.

  3. A nitrite transporter associated with nitrite uptake by higher plant chloroplasts.

    PubMed

    Sugiura, Miwa; Georgescu, Mihaela N; Takahashi, Masaaki

    2007-07-01

    Chloroplasts take up cytosolic nitrite during nitrate assimilation. In this study we identified a nitrite transporter located in the chloroplasts of higher plants. The transporter, CsNitr1-L, a member of the proton-dependent oligopeptide transporter (POT) family, was detected during light-induced chloroplast development in de-etiolating cucumber seedlings. We detected a CsNitr1-L-green fluorescent protein (GFP) fusion protein in the chloroplasts of leaf cells and found that an immunoreactive 51 kDa protein was present in the isolated inner envelope membrane of chloroplasts. CsNitr1-L has an isoform, CsNitr1-S, with an identical 484 amino acid core sequence; however, in CsNitr1-S the 120 amino acid N-terminal extension is missing. Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells expressing CsNitr1-S absorbed nitrite from an acidic medium at a slower rate than mock-transformed control cells, and accumulated nitrite to only one-sixth the concentration of the control cells, suggesting that CsNitr1-S enhances the efflux of nitrite from the cell. Insertion of T-DNA in a single CsNitr1-L homolog (At1g68570) in Arabidopsis resulted in nitrite accumulation in leaves to more than five times the concentration found in the wild type. These results show that it is possible that both CsNitr1-L and CsNitr1-S encode efflux-type nitrite transporters, but with different subcellular localizations. CsNitr1-L may possibly load cytosolic nitrite into chloroplast stroma in the chloroplast envelope during nitrate assimilation. The presence of genes homologous to CsNitr1-L in the genomes of Arabidopsis and rice indicates that facilitated nitrite transport is of general physiological importance in plant nutrition.

  4. Contribution of PsbS Function and Stomatal Conductance to Foliar Temperature in Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Kulasek, Milena; Bernacki, Maciej Jerzy; Ciszak, Kamil; Witoń, Damian; Karpiński, Stanisław

    2016-01-01

    Natural capacity has evolved in higher plants to absorb and harness excessive light energy. In basic models, the majority of absorbed photon energy is radiated back as fluorescence and heat. For years the proton sensor protein PsbS was considered to play a critical role in non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) of light absorbed by PSII antennae and in its dissipation as heat. However, the significance of PsbS in regulating heat emission from a whole leaf has never been verified before by direct measurement of foliar temperature under changing light intensity. To test its validity, we here investigated the foliar temperature changes on increasing and decreasing light intensity conditions (foliar temperature dynamics) using a high resolution thermal camera and a powerful adjustable light-emitting diode (LED) light source. First, we showed that light-dependent foliar temperature dynamics is correlated with Chl content in leaves of various plant species. Secondly, we compared the foliar temperature dynamics in Arabidopsis thaliana wild type, the PsbS null mutant npq4-1 and a PsbS-overexpressing transgenic line under different transpiration conditions with or without a photosynthesis inhibitor. We found no direct correlations between the NPQ level and the foliar temperature dynamics. Rather, differences in foliar temperature dynamics are primarily affected by stomatal aperture, and rapid foliar temperature increase during irradiation depends on the water status of the leaf. We conclude that PsbS is not directly involved in regulation of foliar temperature dynamics during excessive light energy episodes. PMID:27273581

  5. Avian vacuolar myelinopathy linked to exotic aquatic plants and a novel cyanobacterial species.

    PubMed

    Wilde, Susan B; Murphy, Thomas M; Hope, Charlotte P; Habrun, Sarah K; Kempton, Jason; Birrenkott, Anna; Wiley, Faith; Bowerman, William W; Lewitus, Alan J

    2005-06-01

    Invasions of exotic species have created environmental havoc through competition and displacement of native plants and animals. The introduction of hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata) into the United States in the 1960s has been detrimental to navigation, power generation, water intake, and water quality (McCann et al., 1996). Our field surveys and feeding studies have now implicated exotic hydrilla and associated epiphytic cyanobacterial species as a link to avian vacuolar myelinopathy (AVM), an emerging avian disease affecting herbivorous waterbirds and their avian predators. AVM, first reported in 1994, has caused the death of at least 100 bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) and thousands of American coots (Fulica americana) at 11 sites from Texas to North Carolina (Thomas et al., 1998; Rocke et al., 2002). Our working hypothesis is that the agent of this disease is an uncharacterized neurotoxin produced by a novel cyanobacterial epiphyte of the order Stigonematales. This undescribed species covers up to 95% of the surface area of leaves in reservoirs where bird deaths have occurred from the disease. In addition, this species is rare or not found on hydrilla collected at sites where AVM disease has not been diagnosed. Laboratory feeding trials and a sentinel bird study using naturally occurring blooms of cyanobacteria on hydrilla leaves and farm-raised mallard ducks (Anas platyrhynchos) induced the disease experimentally. Since 1994 AVM has been diagnosed in additional sites from Texas to North Carolina. Specific site characteristics that produce the disjunct distribution of AVM are unknown, but it is probable that the incidence of this disease will increase with the introduction of hydrilla and associated cyanobacterial species into additional ponds, lakes, and reservoirs.

  6. Fusion proteins comprising a Fusarium-specific antibody linked to antifungal peptides protect plants against a fungal pathogen.

    PubMed

    Peschen, Dieter; Li, He-Ping; Fischer, Rainer; Kreuzaler, Fritz; Liao, Yu-Cai

    2004-06-01

    In planta expression of recombinant antibodies recognizing pathogen-specific antigens has been proposed as a strategy for crop protection. We report the expression of fusion proteins comprising a Fusarium-specific recombinant antibody linked to one of three antifungal peptides (AFPs) as a method for protecting plants against fungal diseases. A chicken-derived single-chain antibody specific to antigens displayed on the Fusarium cell surface was isolated from a pooled immunocompetent phage display library. This recombinant antibody inhibited fungal growth in vitro when fused to any of the three AFPs. Expression of the fusion proteins in transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana plants conferred high levels of protection against Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. matthiolae, whereas plants expressing either the fungus-specific antibody or AFPs alone exhibited only moderate resistance. Our results demonstrate that antibody fusion proteins may be used as effective and versatile tools for the protection of crop plants against fungal infection.

  7. Ranunculus glacialis L.: successful reproduction at the altitudinal limits of higher plant life.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Johanna; Steinacher, Gerlinde; Ladinig, Ursula

    2010-07-01

    Biodiversity decreases with increasing altitude, mainly because of the increasingly adverse climate. In the European Alps, only a few plant species occur above 4,000 m a.s.l., among these is Ranunculus glacialis L. Current studies have shown that R. glacialis has a highly conservative growth strategy and low developmental plasticity in response to different dates of snowmelt. Therefore, it was of particular interest to observe whether this strategy is maintained at higher altitudes and to reveal the reproductive limits. We examined the effect of the date of snowmelt on reproductive development and reproductive success in R. glacialis over several years at two subnival sites (2,650 and 2,880 m a.s.l.) and at a nival site (3,440 m a.s.l.) in the Austrian Alps. At the subnival sites, reproductive performance was relatively stable (prefloration period, i.e. snowmelt to onset of anthesis, 2-3 weeks; postfloration period, i.e. onset of anthesis until fruit maturity, 4-5 weeks). Depending on the date of flowering, the mean seed/ovule (S/O) ratio was 0.5-0.8. The temporal safety margin between seed maturation and the onset of winter conditions was at least 1 month. The situation was quite different in the nival zone: the prefloration period usually lasted 1 month, anthesis up to 2 weeks, and seed development 6-7 weeks; when seeds matured in time, the S/O ratio was 0.4-0.6. Overall, R. glacialis shows a high developmental plasticity. At higher altitudes, R. glacialis can double the time taken for seed development but runs a high risk of seeds not maturing in time.

  8. Geometric description and electronic properties of the principal photosynthetic pigments of higher plants: a DFT study.

    PubMed

    Torres-Rivas, Francisco; Flores-Hidalgo, Manuel Alberto; Glossman-Mitnik, Daniel; Barraza-Jimenez, Diana

    2015-10-01

    The geometric parameters, local and global chemical reactivity parameters (such as the ionization potential, electron affinity, electronegativity, hardness, softness, chemical potential, and electrophilicity index), as well as the energy levels (HOMO/LUMO) and HOMO-LUMO energy gaps have been determined for the principal carotenoids in higher plants. DFT calculations performed using the B3LYP functional in combination with the 6-31G(d,p) (for geometric parameters) and 6-31 + G(d,p) (for energy parameters) basis sets were carried out to study these structures. The HOMO-LUMO energy gaps obtained with the TPSSh functional were compared with the corresponding energy gaps obtained with B3LYP (when both functionals were used with the 6-31 + G(d,p) basis set). Upon analyzing all of the calculated parameters of the studied molecules, both carotenes were found to be the most reactive, followed by β-cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, lutein, violaxanthin, and finally neoxanthin, the least reactive molecule. The results reveal that all of the carotenoids show very high coplanarity in the photochemically active region, resulting in small HOMO-LUMO energy gaps. The calculated local and global chemical reactivity parameters indicate that all of the studied molecules may be classified as soft, as they are good electron donors/acceptors, making these molecules good candidates for use in artificial photosynthetic systems.

  9. Relative in vitro growth rates of duckweeds (Lemnaceae) - the most rapidly growing higher plants.

    PubMed

    Ziegler, P; Adelmann, K; Zimmer, S; Schmidt, C; Appenroth, K-J

    2015-01-01

    Relative growth rates (RGR), doubling times (DT) and relative weekly yields (RY) of 39 clones (ecotypes) from 13 species representing all five genera of duckweeds were determined under standardised cultivation conditions. RGR ranged overall from 0.153 to 0.519 day(-1) , DT from 1.34 to 4.54 days and RY from 2.9 to 37.8 week(-1) . The RGR and RY data can be compared directly to other published findings to only a limited extent on account of missing clonal designations for and limited accessibility to previously investigated clones, as well as the use of different data denominators. However, they are consistent with the published results of other comparative duckweed studies of similar scope in showing that RGR does not vary primarily at the level of the genus or species, but rather reflects the adaptation of individual clones to specific local conditions. The RGR data support the widely held assumption that duckweeds can grow faster than other higher plants and that they can thus surpass land-based agricultural crops in productivity. Duckweeds are highly promising for the production of biomass for nutrition and energy, but extensive clonal comparison will be required to identify the most suitable isolates for this purpose.

  10. Photosynthetic complex stoichiometry dynamics in higher plants: environmental acclimation and photosynthetic flux control

    PubMed Central

    Schöttler, Mark A.; Tóth, Szilvia Z.

    2014-01-01

    The composition of the photosynthetic apparatus of higher plants is dynamically adjusted to long-term changes in environmental conditions such as growth light intensity and light quality, and to changing metabolic demands for ATP and NADPH imposed by stresses and leaf aging. By changing photosynthetic complex stoichiometry, a long-term imbalance between the photosynthetic production of ATP and NADPH and their metabolic consumption is avoided, and cytotoxic side reactions are minimized. Otherwise, an excess capacity of the light reactions, relative to the demands of primary metabolism, could result in a disturbance of cellular redox homeostasis and an increased production of reactive oxygen species, leading to the destruction of the photosynthetic apparatus and the initiation of cell death programs. In this review, changes of the abundances of the different constituents of the photosynthetic apparatus in response to environmental conditions and during leaf ontogenesis are summarized. The contributions of the different photosynthetic complexes to photosynthetic flux control and the regulation of electron transport are discussed. PMID:24860580

  11. Overexpression of UV-DAMAGED DNA BINDING PROTEIN 1 links plant development and phytonutrient accumulation in high pigment-1 tomato.

    PubMed

    Azari, Raviv; Reuveni, Moshe; Evenor, Dalia; Nahon, Sahadia; Shlomo, Haviva; Chen, Lea; Levin, Ilan

    2010-08-01

    Fruits of tomato plants carrying the high pigment-1 mutations hp-1 and hp-1(w) are characterized by an increased number of plastids coupled with enhanced levels of functional metabolites. Unfortunately, hp-1 mutant plants are also typified by light-dependent retardation in seedling and whole-plant growth and development, which limits their cultivation. These mutations were mapped to the gene encoding UV-DAMAGED DNA BINDING PROTEIN 1 (DDB1) and, recently, fruit-specific RNA interference studies have demonstrated an increased number of plastids and enhanced carotenoid accumulation in the transgenic tomato fruits. However, whole-plant overexpression of DDB1, required to substantiate its effects on seedling and plant development and to couple them with fruit phenotypes, has heretofore been unsuccessful. In this study, five transgenic lines constitutively overexpressing normal DDB1 in hp-1 mutant plants were analysed. Eleven-day-old seedlings, representing these lines, displayed up to approximately 73- and approximately 221-fold overexpression of the gene in hypocotyls and cotyledons, respectively. This overexpression resulted in statistically significant reversion to the non-mutant developmental phenotypes, including more than a full quantitative reversion. This reversion of phenotypes was generally accompanied by correlated responses in chlorophyll accumulation and altered expression of selected light signalling genes: PHYTOCHROME A, CRYPTOCHROME 1, ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL 5, and the gene encoding CHLOROPHYLL A/B-BINDING PROTEIN 4. Cumulatively, these results provide the missing link between DDB1 and its effects on tomato plant development.

  12. The re-assimilation of ammonia produced by photorespiration and the nitrogen economy of C3 higher plants.

    PubMed

    Keys, Alfred J

    2006-02-01

    Photorespiration involves the conversion of glycine to serine with the release of ammonia and CO(2). In C(3) terrestrial higher plants the flux through glycine and serine is so large that it results in the production of ammonia at a rate far exceeding that from reduction of new nitrogen entering the plant. The photorespiratory nitrogen cycle re-assimilates this ammonia using the enzymes glutamine synthetase and glutamine:2-oxoglutarateaminotransferase.

  13. Less Time to Study, Less Well Prepared for Work, yet Satisfied with Higher Education: A UK Perspective on Links between Higher Education and the Labour Market

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Little, Brenda; Arthur, Lore

    2010-01-01

    This paper explores graduates' views on the relationship between higher education and employment. It draws on a major European study involving graduates five years after graduation and highlights similarities and differences between UK graduates' experiences and their European counterparts. Specifically, we address questions raised in the study…

  14. Isotopic and Reporter Techniques to Verify Links Between Plant C Flow and Denitrification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Killham, K.; Prendergast, M.; Baggs, E.

    2007-12-01

    The availability of organic C is considered paramount for the production and reduction of the greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O) during denitrification in the rhizosphere. Despite this, the role of organic C in the regulation of N2O- and N2-genic enzymes is poorly understood. Stable isotopes are fundamental in resolving this. Here we will present selected results from experiments in which we have applied isotopic and reporter techniques to verify the effect of plant C in driving denitrification, and the potential feedbacks of this on climate change. Changes in C input to soil, such as under elevated atmospheric CO2, is significant for N2O production and reduction. Following application of 15N-labelled fertiliser to Lolium perenne swards we showed increased denitrifier-N2O and N2 production under elevated pCO2 (60 Pa) in the Swiss FACE experiment. This was attributed to greater below ground C allocation providing the energy for denitrification, and emissions were strongly positively correlated with TOC. By converting all rhizosphere soil to Redox conditions conducive to denitrification, rhizosphere C flow was quantified via N2O flux, and estimates agreed with measurements using 13C and 14C approaches. Little is known about the effect of different C substrates in regulating N2O and N2 production nor their effects on community structure, activity or species selection of denitrifying bacteria in the rhizosphere. We provide the first evidence for differences in N2O and N2 production with different C compounds typically present in root exudate, which suggest differences in regulation of the NO and N2O reductases, or preference for different C compounds in the rhizosphere denitrifier community. Such differences in gaseous N production are being related to the function and activity of the denitrifier community associated with this root C flow, with the link between C flow and denitrifier activity being verified by stable isotope probing and NanoSIMS imaging. Further

  15. Processes for producing polyhydroxybutyrate and related polyhydroxyalkanoates in the plastids of higher plants

    DOEpatents

    Somerville, Christopher R.; Nawrath, Christiane; Poirier, Yves

    1997-03-11

    The present invention relates to a process for producing poly-D-(-)-3-hydroxybutyric acid (PHB) and related polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) in the plastids of plants. The production of PHB is accomplished by genetically transforming plants with modified genes from microorganisms. The genes encode the enzymes required to synthesize PHB from acetyl-CoA or related metabolites and are fused with additional plant sequences for targeting the enzymes to the plastid.

  16. Processes for producing polyhydroxybutyrate and related polyhydroxyalkanoates in the plastids of higher plants

    DOEpatents

    Somerville, C.R.; Nawrath, C.; Poirier, Y.

    1997-03-11

    The present invention relates to a process for producing poly-D-(-)-3-hydroxybutyric acid (PHB) and related polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA) in the plastids of plants. The production of PHB is accomplished by genetically transforming plants with modified genes from microorganisms. The genes encode the enzymes required to synthesize PHB from acetyl-CoA or related metabolites and are fused with additional plant sequences for targeting the enzymes to the plastid. 37 figs.

  17. Biological consilience of hydrogen sulfide and nitric oxide in plants: Gases of primordial earth linking plant, microbial and animal physiologies.

    PubMed

    Yamasaki, Hideo; Cohen, Michael F

    2016-05-01

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is produced in the mammalian body through the enzymatic activities of cystathionine β-synthase (CBS), cystathionine γ-lyase (CSE) and 3-mercaptopyruvate sulfurtransferase (3MST). A growing number of studies have revealed that biogenic H2S produced in tissues is involved in a variety of physiological responses in mammals including vasorelaxation and neurotransmission. It is now evident that mammals utilize H2S to regulate multiple signaling systems, echoing the research history of the gaseous signaling molecules nitric oxide (NO) and carbon monoxide (CO) that had previously only been recognized for their cytotoxicity. In the human diet, meats (mammals, birds and fishes) and vegetables (plants) containing cysteine and other sulfur compounds are the major dietary sources for endogenous production of H2S. Plants are primary producers in ecosystems on the earth and they synthesize organic sulfur compounds through the activity of sulfur assimilation. Although plant H2S-producing activities have been known for a long time, our knowledge of H2S biology in plant systems has not been updated to the extent of mammalian studies. Here we review recent progress on H2S studies, highlighting plants and bacteria. Scoping the future integration of H2S, NO and O2 biology, we discuss a possible linkage between physiology, ecology and evolutional biology of gas metabolisms that may reflect the historical changes of the Earth's atmospheric composition.

  18. Production characteristics of the "higher plants-soil-like substrate" system as an element of the bioregenerative life support system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Velichko, V. V.; Tikhomirov, A. A.; Ushakova, S. A.; Tikhomirova, N. A.; Shihov, V. N.; Tirranen, L. S.; Gribovskaya, I. A.

    2013-01-01

    The study addresses the possibility of long-duration operation of a higher plant conveyor, using a soil-like substrate (SLS) as the root zone. Chufa (Cyperus esculentus L.), radish (Raphanus sativus L.), and lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) were used as study material. A chufa community consisting of 4 age groups and radish and lettuce communities consisting of 2 age groups were irrigated with a nutrient solution, which contained mineral elements extracted from the SLS. After each harvest, inedible biomass of the harvested plants and inedible biomasses of wheat and saltwort were added to the SLS. The amounts of the inedible biomasses of wheat and saltwort to be added to the SLS were determined based on the nitrogen content of the edible mass of harvested plants. CO2 concentration in the growth chamber was maintained within the range of 1100-1700 ppm. The results of the study show that higher plants can be grown quite successfully using the proposed process of plant waste utilization in the SLS. The addition of chufa inedible biomass to the SLS resulted in species-specific inhibition of growth of both cultivated crops and microorganisms in the "higher plants - SLS" system. There were certain differences between the amounts of some mineral elements removed from the SLS with the harvested edible biomass and those added to it with the inedible biomasses of wheat and saltwort.

  19. Research on the effects of altered gravity and other factors on the growth and development of higher plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, A. H.

    1973-01-01

    The establishment, maintenance and use of the NASA-UCSC Botanical Centrifuge is discussed. The broad goals of this project were: (1) to establish facilities for conducting experiments under conditions of sustained centrifugation; (2) to pursue research on the gravitational physiology of higher plants; (3) to develop experimental hardware suitable for studies of plant development in the weightless condition; and (4) to accommodate visiting investigators whose researches are of interest to the NASA Biomedical Program and who may require for some limited time, the use of a medium size centrifuge with associated facilities appropriate for plant physiological studies.

  20. [Transcription Factors in Developmental Genetics and the Evolution of Higher Plants].

    PubMed

    Lutova, L A; Dodueva, I E; Lebedeva, M A; Tvorogova, V E

    2015-05-01

    Transcription factors play an essential role in controlling various developmental programs in plants, coordinating the action of any genetic network. Among the most important groups of plant transcription factors are the homeodomain-containing transcription factors, in particular, those belonging to the KNOX and WOX families, the functions of which are associated with regulation of the meristem activity, development of the aboveground and underground parts of plants, and control of embryogenesis. This review examines the role of KNOX and WOX transcription factors in various developmental programs, as well as in the evolutionary complication of the body plan in terrestrial plants.

  1. Different hydrogen isotope fractionations during lipid formation in higher plants: Implications for paleohydrology reconstruction at a global scale

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jinzhao; Liu, Weiguo; An, Zhisheng; Yang, Hong

    2016-01-01

    Leaf wax δDn-alkane values have shown to differ significantly among plant life forms (e.g., among grasses, shrubs, and trees) in higher plants. However, the underlying causes for the differences in leaf wax δDn-alkane values among different plant life forms remain poorly understood. In this study, we observed that leaf wax δDn-alkane values between major high plant lineages (eudicots versus monocots) differed significantly under the same environmental conditions. Such a difference primarily inherited from different hydrogen biosynthetic fractionations (εwax-lw). Based upon a reanalysis of the available leaf wax δDn-alkane dataset from modern plants in the Northern Hemisphere, we discovered that the apparent hydrogen fractionation factor (εwax-p) between leaf wax δDn-alkane values of major angiosperm lineages and precipitation δD values exhibited distinguishable distribution patterns at a global scale, with an average of −140‰ for monocotyledonous species, −107‰ for dicotyledonous species. Additionally, variations of leaf wax δDn-alkane values and the εwax-p values in gymnosperms are similar to those of dicotyledonous species. Therefore, the data let us believe that biological factors inherited from plant taxonomies have a significant effect on controlling leaf wax δDn-alkane values in higher plants. PMID:26806719

  2. Different hydrogen isotope fractionations during lipid formation in higher plants: Implications for paleohydrology reconstruction at a global scale.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinzhao; Liu, Weiguo; An, Zhisheng; Yang, Hong

    2016-01-25

    Leaf wax δDn-alkane values have shown to differ significantly among plant life forms (e.g., among grasses, shrubs, and trees) in higher plants. However, the underlying causes for the differences in leaf wax δDn-alkane values among different plant life forms remain poorly understood. In this study, we observed that leaf wax δDn-alkane values between major high plant lineages (eudicots versus monocots) differed significantly under the same environmental conditions. Such a difference primarily inherited from different hydrogen biosynthetic fractionations (εwax-lw). Based upon a reanalysis of the available leaf wax δDn-alkane dataset from modern plants in the Northern Hemisphere, we discovered that the apparent hydrogen fractionation factor (εwax-p) between leaf wax δDn-alkane values of major angiosperm lineages and precipitation δD values exhibited distinguishable distribution patterns at a global scale, with an average of -140‰ for monocotyledonous species, -107‰ for dicotyledonous species. Additionally, variations of leaf wax δDn-alkane values and the εwax-p values in gymnosperms are similar to those of dicotyledonous species. Therefore, the data let us believe that biological factors inherited from plant taxonomies have a significant effect on controlling leaf wax δDn-alkane values in higher plants.

  3. Different hydrogen isotope fractionations during lipid formation in higher plants: Implications for paleohydrology reconstruction at a global scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jinzhao; Liu, Weiguo; An, Zhisheng; Yang, Hong

    2016-01-01

    Leaf wax δDn-alkane values have shown to differ significantly among plant life forms (e.g., among grasses, shrubs, and trees) in higher plants. However, the underlying causes for the differences in leaf wax δDn-alkane values among different plant life forms remain poorly understood. In this study, we observed that leaf wax δDn-alkane values between major high plant lineages (eudicots versus monocots) differed significantly under the same environmental conditions. Such a difference primarily inherited from different hydrogen biosynthetic fractionations (εwax-lw). Based upon a reanalysis of the available leaf wax δDn-alkane dataset from modern plants in the Northern Hemisphere, we discovered that the apparent hydrogen fractionation factor (εwax-p) between leaf wax δDn-alkane values of major angiosperm lineages and precipitation δD values exhibited distinguishable distribution patterns at a global scale, with an average of ‑140‰ for monocotyledonous species, ‑107‰ for dicotyledonous species. Additionally, variations of leaf wax δDn-alkane values and the εwax-p values in gymnosperms are similar to those of dicotyledonous species. Therefore, the data let us believe that biological factors inherited from plant taxonomies have a significant effect on controlling leaf wax δDn-alkane values in higher plants.

  4. Rubisco oligomers composed of linked small and large subunits assemble in tobacco plastids and have higher affinities for CO2 and O2.

    PubMed

    Whitney, Spencer Michael; Kane, Heather Jean; Houtz, Robert L; Sharwood, Robert Edward

    2009-04-01

    Manipulation of Rubisco within higher plants is complicated by the different genomic locations of the large (L; rbcL) and small (S; RbcS) subunit genes. Although rbcL can be accurately modified by plastome transformation, directed genetic manipulation of the multiple nuclear-encoded RbcS genes is more challenging. Here we demonstrate the viability of linking the S and L subunits of tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) Rubisco using a flexible 40-amino acid tether. By replacing the rbcL in tobacco plastids with an artificial gene coding for a S40L fusion peptide, we found that the fusions readily assemble into catalytic (S40L)8 and (S40L)16 oligomers that are devoid of unlinked S subunits. While there was little or no change in CO2/O2 specificity or carboxylation rate of the Rubisco oligomers, their Kms for CO2 and O2 were reduced 10% to 20% and 45%, respectively. In young maturing leaves of the plastome transformants (called ANtS40L), the S40L-Rubisco levels were approximately 20% that of wild-type controls despite turnover of the S40L-Rubisco oligomers being only slightly enhanced relative to wild type. The reduced Rubisco content in ANtS40L leaves is partly attributed to problems with folding and assembly of the S40L peptides in tobacco plastids that relegate approximately 30% to 50% of the S40L pool to the insoluble protein fraction. Leaf CO2-assimilation rates in ANtS40L at varying pCO2 corresponded with the kinetics and reduced content of the Rubisco oligomers. This fusion strategy provides a novel platform to begin simultaneously engineering Rubisco L and S subunits in tobacco plastids.

  5. Modulation of energy-dependent quenching of excitons in antennae of higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Avenson, Thomas J.; Cruz, Jeffrey A.; Kramer, David M.

    2004-01-01

    Energy-dependent exciton quenching, or qE, protects the higher plant photosynthetic apparatus from photodamage. Initiation of qE involves protonation of violaxanthin deepoxidase and PsbS, a component of the photosystem II antenna complex, as a result of lumen acidification driven by photosynthetic electron transfer. It has become clear that the response of qE to linear electron flow, termed “qE sensitivity,” must be modulated in response to fluctuating environmental conditions. Previously, three mechanisms have been proposed to account for qE modulation: (i) the sensitivity of qE to the lumen pH is altered; (ii) elevated cyclic electron flow around photosystem I increases proton translocation into the lumen; and (iii) lowering the conductivity of the thylakoid ATP synthase to protons (gH+) allows formation of a larger steady-state proton motive force (pmf). Kinetic analysis of the electrochromic shift of intrinsic thylakoid pigments, a linear indicator of transthylakoid electric field component, suggests that, when CO2 alone was lowered from 350 ppm to 50 ppm CO2, modulation of qE sensitivity could be explained solely by changes in conductivity. Lowering both CO2 (to 50 ppm) and O2 (to 1%) resulted in an additional increase in qE sensitivity that could not be explained by changes in conductivity or cyclic electron flow associated with photosystem I. Evidence is presented for a fourth mechanism, in which changes in qE sensitivity result from variable partitioning of proton motive force into the electric field and pH gradient components. The implications of this mechanism for the storage of proton motive force and the regulation of the light reactions are discussed. PMID:15064404

  6. Primary charge separation and energy transfer in the photosystem I reaction center of higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    White, N.T.H.; Beddard, G.S.; Thorne J.R.G.; Feehan, T.M.; Keyes, T.E.; Heathcote, P.

    1996-07-18

    Using low intensity femtosecond duration laser pulses at 708 nm, we have observed absorption transients associated with electron transfer through the primary electron acceptor A{sub 0} in the photosystem I (PSI) reaction center from spinach under nonreducing conditions. At this wavelength the electron donor P{sub 700} is excited directly, although some antenna chlorophylls are also excited. Using a nanosecond duration preflash of 690 nm to oxidize P{sub 700}, and then measuring the absorption transients from the antenna alone, it is possible by subtraction to isolate the absorption transients arising from electron transfer. We discuss this method critically. Th spectrum of A{sub 0}{sup -}-A{sub 0} does not appear promptly but takes nearly 3 ps to reach maximum intensity and resembles those spectra previously obtained from higher plants, with a maximum bleaching at 685{+-}2 nm and a shoulder in the region 670-675 nm. The decay time of the primary radical pair P{sub 700}{sup +}A{sub 0}{sup -} is calculated as 20 ps. Analysis of absorption transients indicates that the intrinsic rate constant forming the primary radical pair P{sub 700}{sup +}A{sub 0}{sup -} cannot be measured directly because energy migration in the antenna is fast and quenching is approaching `trap limited` behavior. With use of a detailed model of the antenna energy migration based on the X-ray structure, the intrinsic rate constant for electron transfer is estimated as k{sub 1} nearly equals 0.7 ps{sup -1}. 81 refs., 15 figs., 1 tab.

  7. Hemin inhibits ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis in both a higher plant and yeast

    SciTech Connect

    Vierstra, R.D.; Sullivan, M.L.

    1988-05-03

    In eukaryotes, a major route for ATP-dependent protein breakdown proceeds through covalent intermediates of target proteins destined for degradation and the highly conserved, 76 amino acid protein ubiquitin. In rabbit reticulocytes, it has been shown that hemin effectively inhibits this pathway by blocking the catabolism of ubiquitin-protein conjugates. Here the authors demonstrate that hemin is also an effective inhibitor of the ubiquitin-dependent proteolytic pathway in both a higher plant, oats (Avena sativa), and yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). Hemin inhibits all stages of the pathway in vitro, including ATP-dependent formation of ubiquitin-protein conjugates, disassembly of conjugates by ubiquitin-protein lyase(s) (or isopeptidases), and degradation of ubiquitin-protein conjugates by ATP-dependent protease(s). Using ubiquitin-/sup 125/I-lysozyme conjugates synthesized in vitro as substrates, they determined the specific effects of hemin on the rates of disassembly and degradation separately. The concentration of hemin required for half-maximal inhibition of both processes was identical in each species, approx. 60 ..mu..M in oats and approx. 50 ..mu..M in yeast. Similar inhibitory effects were observed when two hemin analogues, mesoheme or protoporphyrin IX, were employed. These results demonstrate that the effect of hemin on ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis is not restricted to erythroid cells and as a result hemin may be a useful tool in studies of this pathway in all eukaryotic cells. These results also question models where hemin serves as a specific negative modulator of proteolysis in erythroid cells.

  8. Arabidopsis carotenoid mutants demonstrate that lutein is not essential for photosynthesis in higher plants.

    PubMed Central

    Pogson, B; McDonald, K A; Truong, M; Britton, G; DellaPenna, D

    1996-01-01

    Lutein, a dihydroxy beta, epsilon-carotenoid, is the predominant carotenoid in photosynthetic plant tissue and plays a critical role in light-harvesting complex assembly and function. To further understand lutein synthesis and function, we isolated four lutein-deficient mutants of Arabidopsis that define two loci, lut1 and lut2 (for lutein deficient). These loci are required for lutein biosynthesis but not for the biosynthesis of beta, beta-carotenoids. The lut1 mutations are recessive, accumulate high levels of zeinoxanthin, which is the immediate precursor of lutein, and define lut1 as a disruption in epsilon ring hydroxylation. The lut2 mutations are semidominant, and their biochemical phenotype is consistent with a disruption of epsilon ring cyclization. The lut2 locus cosegregates with the recently isolated epsilon cyclase gene, thus, providing additional evidence that the lut2 alleles are mutations in the epsilon cyclase gene. It appears likely that the epsilon cyclase is a key step in regulating lutein levels and the ratio of lutein to beta,beta-carotenoids. Surprisingly, despite the absence of lutein, neither the lut1 nor lut2 mutation causes a visible deleterious phenotype or altered chlorophyll content, but both mutants have significantly higher levels of beta, beta-carotenoids. In particular, there is a stable increase in the xanthophyll cycle pigments (violaxanthin, antheraxanthin, and zeaxanthin) in both lut1 and lut2 mutants as well as an increase in zeinoxanthin in lut1 and beta-carotene in lut2. The accumulation of specific carotenoids is discussed as it pertains to the regulation of carotenoid biosynthesis and incorporation into the photosynthetic apparatus. Presumably, particular beta, beta-carotenoids are able to compensate functionally and structurally for lutein in the photosystems of Arabidopsis. PMID:8837513

  9. Plant Biology Personnel and Training at Doctorate-Granting Institutions. Higher Education Panel Report Number 62.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andersen, Charles J.

    Planning major research programs requires accurate information about funding and personnel. Since reliable baseline data for plant biology have not been available, a study was conducted to provide such data by measuring the total plant biology effort at major doctorate-granting institutions with graduate programs in botany during fall 1982.…

  10. Linking plant specialization to dependence in interactions for seed set in pollination networks.

    PubMed

    Tur, Cristina; Castro-Urgal, Rocío; Traveset, Anna

    2013-01-01

    Studies on pollination networks have provided valuable information on the number, frequency, distribution and identity of interactions between plants and pollinators. However, little is still known on the functional effect of these interactions on plant reproductive success. Information on the extent to which plants depend on such interactions will help to make more realistic predictions of the potential impacts of disturbances on plant-pollinator networks. Plant functional dependence on pollinators (all interactions pooled) can be estimated by comparing seed set with and without pollinators (i.e. bagging flowers to exclude them). Our main goal in this study was thus to determine whether plant dependence on current insect interactions is related to plant specialization in a pollination network. We studied two networks from different communities, one in a coastal dune and one in a mountain. For ca. 30% of plant species in each community, we obtained the following specialization measures: (i) linkage level (number of interactions), (ii) diversity of interactions, and (iii) closeness centrality (a measure of how much a species is connected to other plants via shared pollinators). Phylogenetically controlled regression analyses revealed that, for the largest and most diverse coastal community, plants highly dependent on pollinators were the most generalists showing the highest number and diversity of interactions as well as occupying central positions in the network. The mountain community, by contrast, did not show such functional relationship, what might be attributable to their lower flower-resource heterogeneity and diversity of interactions. We conclude that plants with a wide array of pollinator interactions tend to be those that are more strongly dependent upon them for seed production and thus might be those more functionally vulnerable to the loss of network interaction, although these outcomes might be context-dependent.

  11. The aspartate-family pathway of plants: linking production of essential amino acids with energy and stress regulation.

    PubMed

    Galili, Gad

    2011-02-01

    The Asp family pathway of plants is highly important from a nutritional standpoint because it leads to the synthesis of the four essential amino acids Lys, Thr, Met and Ile. These amino acids are not synthesized by human and its monogastric livestock and should be supplemented in their diets. Among the Asp-family amino acids, Lys is considered as the nutritionally most important essential amino acid because its level is most limiting in cereal grains, representing the largest source of plant foods and feeds worldwide. Metabolic engineering approaches led to significant increase in Lys level in seeds by enhancing its synthesis and reducing its catabolism. However, results from the model plant Arabidopsis showed that this approach may retard seed germination due to a major negative effect on the levels of a number of TCA cycle metabolites that associate with cellular energy. In the present review, we discuss the regulatory metabolic link of the Asp-family pathway with the TCA cycle and its biological significance upon exposure to stress conditions that cause energy deprivation. In addition, we also discuss how deep understanding of the regulatory metabolic link of the Asp-family pathway with energy and stress regulation can be used to improve Lys level in seeds of important crop species, minimizing the interference with the cellular energy status and plant-stress interaction. This review thus provides an example showing how deep understanding the inter-regulation of metabolism with plant stress physiology can lead to successful nutritional improvements with minimal negative effect on plant growth and response to stressful environments.

  12. Eco-geophysical imaging of watershed-scale soil patterns links with plant community spatial patterns

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The extent to which soil resource availability, nutrients or 1 moisture, control the structure, function and diversity of plant communities has aroused considerable interest in the past decade, and remains topical in light of global change. Numerous plant communities are controlled either by water o...

  13. Citizen Science: linking the recent rapid advances of plant flowering in Canada with climate variability.

    PubMed

    Gonsamo, Alemu; Chen, Jing M; Wu, Chaoyang

    2013-01-01

    The timing of crucial events in plant life cycles is shifting in response to climate change. We use phenology records from PlantWatch Canada 'Citizen Science' networks to study recent rapid shifts of flowering phenology and its relationship with climate. The average first flower bloom day of 19 Canadian plant species has advanced by about 9 days during 2001-2012. 73% of the rapid and unprecedented first bloom day advances are explained by changes in mean annual national temperature, allowing the reconstruction of historic flower phenology records starting from 1948. The overall trends show that plant flowering in Canada is advancing by about 9 days per °C. This analysis reveals the strongest biological signal yet of climate warming in Canada. This finding has broad implications for niche differentiation among coexisting species, competitive interactions between species, and the asynchrony between plants and the organisms they interact with.

  14. Modeling evapotranspiration based on plant hydraulic theory can predict spatial variability across an elevation gradient and link to biogeochemical fluxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, D. S.; Frank, J.; Reed, D.; Whitehouse, F.; Ewers, B. E.; Pendall, E.; Massman, W. J.; Sperry, J. S.

    2012-04-01

    In woody plant systems transpiration is often the dominant component of total evapotranspiration, and so it is key to understanding water and energy cycles. Moreover, transpiration is tightly coupled to carbon and nutrient fluxes, and so it is also vital to understanding spatial variability of biogeochemical fluxes. However, the spatial variability of transpiration and its links to biogeochemical fluxes, within- and among-ecosystems, has been a challenge to constrain because of complex feedbacks between physical and biological controls. Plant hydraulics provides an emerging theory with the rigor needed to develop testable hypotheses and build useful models for scaling these coupled fluxes from individual plants to regional scales. This theory predicts that vegetative controls over water, energy, carbon, and nutrient fluxes can be determined from the limitation of plant water transport through the soil-xylem-stomata pathway. Limits to plant water transport can be predicted from measurable plant structure and function (e.g., vulnerability to cavitation). We present a next-generation coupled transpiration-biogeochemistry model based on this emerging theory. The model, TREEScav, is capable of predicting transpiration, along with carbon and nutrient flows, constrained by plant structure and function. The model incorporates tightly coupled mechanisms of the demand and supply of water through the soil-xylem-stomata system, with the feedbacks to photosynthesis and utilizable carbohydrates. The model is evaluated by testing it against transpiration and carbon flux data along an elevation gradient of woody plants comprising sagebrush steppe, mid-elevation lodgepole pine forests, and subalpine spruce/fir forests in the Rocky Mountains. The model accurately predicts transpiration and carbon fluxes as measured from gas exchange, sap flux, and eddy covariance towers. The results of this work demonstrate that credible spatial predictions of transpiration and related

  15. Production characteristics of lettuce Lactuca sativa L. in the frame of the first crop tests in the Higher Plant Chamber integrated into the MELiSSA Pilot Plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tikhomirova, Natalia; Lawson, Jamie; Stasiak, Michael; Dixon, Mike; Paille, Christel; Peiro, Enrique; Fossen, Arnaud; Godia, Francesc

    Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative (MELiSSA) is an artificial closed ecosystem that is considered a tool for the development of a bioregenerative life support system for manned space missions. One of the five compartments of MELiSSA loop -Higher Plant Chamber was recently integrated into the MELiSSA Pilot Plant facility at Universitat Aut`noma deo Barcelona. The main contributions expected by integration of this photosynthetic compartment are oxygen, water, vegetable food production and CO2 consumption. Production characteristics of Lactuca sativa L., as a MELiSSA candidate crop, were investigated in this work in the first crop experiments in the MELiSSA Pilot Plant facility. The plants were grown in batch culture and totaled 100 plants with a growing area 5 m long and 1 m wide in a sealed controlled environment. Several replicates of the experiments were carried out with varying duration. It was shown that after 46 days of lettuce cultivation dry edible biomass averaged 27, 2 g per plant. However accumulation of oxygen in the chamber, which required purging of the chamber, and decrease in the food value of the plants was observed. Reducing the duration of the tests allowed uninterrupted test without opening the system and also allowed estimation of the crop's carbon balance. Results of productivity, tissue composition, nutrient uptake and canopy photosynthesis of lettuce regardless of test duration are discussed in the paper.

  16. A complete mitochondrial genome of wheat (Triticum aestivum cv. Chinese Yumai), and fast evolving mitochondrial genes in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Cui, Peng; Liu, Huitao; Lin, Qiang; Ding, Feng; Zhuo, Guoyin; Hu, Songnian; Liu, Dongcheng; Yang, Wenlong; Zhan, Kehui; Zhang, Aimin; Yu, Jun

    2009-12-01

    Plant mitochondrial genomes, encoding necessary proteins involved in the system of energy production, play an important role in the development and reproduction of the plant. They occupy a specific evolutionary pattern relative to their nuclear counterparts. Here, we determined the winter wheat (Triticum aestivum cv. Chinese Yumai) mitochondrial genome in a length of 452 and 526 bp by shotgun sequencing its BAC library. It contains 202 genes, including 35 known protein-coding genes, three rRNA and 17 tRNA genes, as well as 149 open reading frames (ORFs; greater than 300 bp in length). The sequence is almost identical to the previously reported sequence of the spring wheat (T. aestivum cv. Chinese Spring); we only identified seven SNPs (three transitions and four transversions) and 10 indels (insertions and deletions) between the two independently acquired sequences, and all variations were found in non-coding regions. This result confirmed the accuracy of the previously reported mitochondrial sequence of the Chinese Spring wheat. The nucleotide frequency and codon usage of wheat are common among the lineage of higher plant with a high AT-content of 58%. Molecular evolutionary analysis demonstrated that plant mitochondrial genomes evolved at different rates, which may correlate with substantial variations in metabolic rate and generation time among plant lineages. In addition, through the estimation of the ratio of non-synonymous to synonymous substitution rates between orthologous mitochondrion-encoded genes of higher plants, we found an accelerated evolutionary rate that seems to be the result of relaxed selection.

  17. Interactions of metal-based engineered nanoparticles with aquatic higher plants: A review of the state of current knowledge.

    PubMed

    Thwala, Melusi; Klaine, Stephen J; Musee, Ndeke

    2016-07-01

    The rising potential for the release of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) into aquatic environments requires evaluation of risks to protect ecological health. The present review examines knowledge pertaining to the interactions of metal-based ENPs with aquatic higher plants, identifies information gaps, and raises considerations for future research to advance knowledge on the subject. The discussion focuses on ENPs' bioaccessibility; uptake, adsorption, translocation, and bioaccumulation; and toxicity effects on aquatic higher plants. An information deficit surrounds the uptake of ENPs and associated dynamics, because the influence of ENP characteristics and water quality conditions has not been well documented. Dissolution appears to be a key mechanism driving bioaccumulation of ENPs, whereas nanoparticulates often adsorb to plant surfaces with minimal internalization. However, few reports document the internalization of ENPs by plants; thus, the role of nanoparticulates' internalization in bioaccumulation and toxicity remains unclear, requiring further investigation. The toxicities of metal-based ENPs mainly have been associated with dissolution as a predominant mechanism, although nano toxicity has also been reported. To advance knowledge in this domain, future investigations need to integrate the influence of ENP characteristics and water physicochemical parameters, as their interplay determines ENP bioaccessibility and influences their risk to health of aquatic higher plants. Furthermore, harmonization of test protocols is recommended for fast tracking the generation of comparable data. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:1677-1694. © 2016 SETAC.

  18. Amino acid export in plants: a missing link in nitrogen cycling.

    PubMed

    Okumoto, Sakiko; Pilot, Guillaume

    2011-05-01

    The export of nutrients from source organs to parts of the body where they are required (e.g. sink organs) is a fundamental biological process. Export of amino acids, one of the most abundant nitrogen species in plant long-distance transport tissues (i.e. xylem and phloem), is an essential process for the proper distribution of nitrogen in the plant. Physiological studies have detected the presence of multiple amino acid export systems in plant cell membranes. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the molecular identity of amino acid exporters, partially due to the technical difficulties hampering the identification of exporter proteins. In this short review, we will summarize our current knowledge about amino acid export systems in plants. Several studies have described plant amino acid transporters capable of bi-directional, facilitative transport, reminiscent of activities identified by earlier physiological studies. Moreover, recent expansion in the number of available amino acid transporter sequences have revealed evolutionary relationships between amino acid exporters from other organisms with a number of uncharacterized plant proteins, some of which might also function as amino acid exporters. In addition, genes that may regulate export of amino acids have been discovered. Studies of these putative transporter and regulator proteins may help in understanding the elusive molecular mechanisms of amino acid export in plants.

  19. Small intestinal hydrolysis of plant glucosides: higher glucohydrolase activities in rodents than passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Lessner, Krista M; Dearing, M Denise; Izhaki, Ido; Samuni-Blank, Michal; Arad, Zeev; Karasov, William H

    2015-09-01

    Glycosides are a major group of plant secondary compounds characterized by one or more sugars conjugated to a lipophilic, possibly toxic aglycone, which is released upon hydrolysis. We compared small intestinal homogenate hydrolysis activity of three rodent and two avian species against four substrates: amygdalin and sinigrin, two plant-derived glucosides, the sugar lactose, whose hydrolysis models some activity against flavonoid and isoflavonoid glucosides, and the disaccharide sugar maltose (from starch), used as a comparator. Three new findings extend our understanding of physiological processing of plant glucosides: (1) the capacity of passerine birds to hydrolyze plant glucosides seems relatively low, compared with rodents; (2) in this first test of vertebrates' enzymic capacity to hydrolyze glucosinolates, sinigrin hydrolytic capacity seems low; (3) in laboratory mice, hydrolytic activity against lactose resides on the enterocytes' apical membrane facing the intestinal lumen, but activity against amygdalin seems to reside inside enterocytes.

  20. Gene-enzyme telationships in somatic cells and their organismal derivatives in higher plants. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Jensen, R. A.

    1980-04-21

    Progress is reported in the following subject areas: (1) chemistry of the arogenate molecule; (2) plant enzymology at the organismal level; (3) isolation of regulatory mutants in tobacco; and (4) stability of the haploid state in Nicotiana sylvestris.

  1. Time to pump iron: iron-deficiency-signaling mechanisms of higher plants.

    PubMed

    Walker, Elsbeth L; Connolly, Erin L

    2008-10-01

    Iron is an essential nutrient for plants, yet it often limits plant growth. On the contrary, overaccumulation of iron within plant cells leads to oxidative stress. As a consequence, iron-uptake systems are carefully regulated to ensure that iron homeostasis is maintained. In response to iron limitation, plants induce expression of sets of activities that function at the root-soil interface to solubilize iron and subsequently transfer it across the plasma membrane of root cells. Recent advances have revealed key players in the signaling pathways that function to induce these iron-uptake responses. Transcription factors belonging to the basic helix-loop-helix, ABI3/VP1(B3), and NAC families appear to function either directly or indirectly in the upregulation of iron deficiency responses.

  2. 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

  3. Effect of low-intensity infrared and millimeter radiation on higher plants' biopotentials.

    PubMed

    Mironova, E A; Romanovskii, Y M

    2001-01-01

    This article studies the effect of local low-intensity electromagnetic radiation on the bioelectric responses of plants. In our investigation, we used thirty-three wavelengths in the visible and infrared spectrurm regions as well as three wavelengths in the millimeter spectrum region. As a result, we obtained the bioelectric responses of plants to electromagnetic radiation not only in the absorption region of cellular pigments (such as chlorophyll, flavin, and phytochrome) but also in the absorption region of water molecules.

  4. Protein phosphatase 2C (PP2C) function in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, P L

    1998-12-01

    In the past few years, molecular cloning studies have revealed the primary structure of plant protein serine/threonine phosphatases. Two structurally distinct families, the PP1/PP2A family and the PP2C family, are present in plants as well as in animals. This review will focus on the plant PP2C family of protein phosphatases. Biochemical and molecular genetic studies in Arabidopsis have identified PP2C enzymes as key players in plant signal transduction processes. For instance, the ABI1/ABI2 PP2Cs are central components in abscisic acid (ABA) signal transduction. Arabidopsis mutants containing a single amino acid exchange in ABI1 or ABI2 show a reduced response to ABA. Another member of the PP2C family, kinase-associated protein phosphatase (KAPP), appears to be an important element in some receptor-like kinase (RLK) signalling pathways. Finally, an alfalfa PP2C acts as a negative regulator of a plant mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway. Thus, the plant PP2Cs function as regulators of various signal transduction pathways.

  5. Molecular Properties and Functional Divergence of the Dehydroascorbate Reductase Gene Family in Lower and Higher Plants.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yuan-Jie; Wang, Wei; Yang, Hai-Ling; Li, Yue; Kang, Xiang-Yang; Wang, Xiao-Ru; Yang, Zhi-Ling

    2015-01-01

    Dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR), which reduces oxidized ascorbate, is important for maintaining an appropriate ascorbate redox state in plant cells. To date, genome-wide molecular characterization of DHARs has only been conducted in bryophytes (Physcomitrella patens) and eudicots (e.g. Arabidopsis thaliana). In this study, to gain a general understanding of the molecular properties and functional divergence of the DHARs in land plants, we further conducted a comprehensive analysis of DHARs from the lycophyte Selaginella moellendorffii, gymnosperm Picea abies and monocot Zea mays. DHARs were present as a small gene family in all of the land plants we examined, with gene numbers ranging from two to four. All the plants contained cytosolic and chloroplastic DHARs, indicating dehydroascorbate (DHA) can be directly reduced in the cytoplasm and chloroplast by DHARs in all the plants. A novel vacuolar DHAR was found in Z. mays, indicating DHA may also be reduced in the vacuole by DHARs in Z. mays. The DHARs within each species showed extensive functional divergence in their gene structures, subcellular localizations, and enzymatic characteristics. This study provides new insights into the molecular characteristics and functional divergence of DHARs in land plants.

  6. Molecular Properties and Functional Divergence of the Dehydroascorbate Reductase Gene Family in Lower and Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yuan-Jie; Wang, Wei; Yang, Hai-Ling; Li, Yue; Kang, Xiang-Yang; Wang, Xiao-Ru; Yang, Zhi-Ling

    2015-01-01

    Dehydroascorbate reductase (DHAR), which reduces oxidized ascorbate, is important for maintaining an appropriate ascorbate redox state in plant cells. To date, genome-wide molecular characterization of DHARs has only been conducted in bryophytes (Physcomitrella patens) and eudicots (e.g. Arabidopsis thaliana). In this study, to gain a general understanding of the molecular properties and functional divergence of the DHARs in land plants, we further conducted a comprehensive analysis of DHARs from the lycophyte Selaginella moellendorffii, gymnosperm Picea abies and monocot Zea mays. DHARs were present as a small gene family in all of the land plants we examined, with gene numbers ranging from two to four. All the plants contained cytosolic and chloroplastic DHARs, indicating dehydroascorbate (DHA) can be directly reduced in the cytoplasm and chloroplast by DHARs in all the plants. A novel vacuolar DHAR was found in Z. mays, indicating DHA may also be reduced in the vacuole by DHARs in Z. mays. The DHARs within each species showed extensive functional divergence in their gene structures, subcellular localizations, and enzymatic characteristics. This study provides new insights into the molecular characteristics and functional divergence of DHARs in land plants. PMID:26684301

  7. Bioremediation of Atmospheric Hydrocarbons via Bacteria Naturally Associated with Leaves of Higher Plants.

    PubMed

    Ali, N; Al-Awadhi, H; Dashti, N; Khanafer, M; El-Nemr, I; Sorkhoh, N; Radwan, S S

    2015-01-01

    Bacteria associated with leaves of sixteen cultivated and wild plant species from all over Kuwait were analyzed by a culture-independent approach. This technique depended on partial sequencing of 16S rDNA regions in total genomic DNA from the bacterial consortia and comparing the resulting sequences with those in the GenBank database. To release bacterial cells from leaves, tough methods such as sonication co-released too much leaf chloroplasts whose DNA interfered with the bacterial DNA. A more satisfactory bacterial release with a minimum of chloroplast co-release was done by gently rubbing the leaf surfaces with soft tooth brushes in phosphate buffer. The leaves of all plant species harbored on their surfaces bacterial communities predominated by hydrocarbonoclastic (hydrocarbon-utilizing) bacterial genera. Leaves of 6 representative plants brought about in the laboratory effective removal of volatile hydrocarbons in sealed microcosms. Each individual plant species had a unique bacterial community structure. Collectively, the phyllospheric microflora on the studied plants comprised the genera Flavobacterium, Halomonas, Arthrobacter, Marinobacter, Neisseria, Ralstonia, Ochrobactrum. Exiguobacterium, Planomicrobium, Propionibacterium, Kocuria, Rhodococcus and Stenotrophomonas. This community structure was dramatically different from the structure we determined earlier for the same plants using the culture-dependent approach, although in both cases, hydrocarbonoclastic bacteria were frequent.

  8. Strategies for psbA gene expression in cyanobacteria, green algae and higher plants: from transcription to PSII repair.

    PubMed

    Mulo, Paula; Sakurai, Isamu; Aro, Eva-Mari

    2012-01-01

    The Photosystem (PS) II of cyanobacteria, green algae and higher plants is prone to light-induced inactivation, the D1 protein being the primary target of such damage. As a consequence, the D1 protein, encoded by the psbA gene, is degraded and re-synthesized in a multistep process called PSII repair cycle. In cyanobacteria, a small gene family codes for the various, functionally distinct D1 isoforms. In these organisms, the regulation of the psbA gene expression occurs mainly at the level of transcription, but the expression is fine-tuned by regulation of translation elongation. In plants and green algae, the D1 protein is encoded by a single psbA gene located in the chloroplast genome. In chloroplasts of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii the psbA gene expression is strongly regulated by mRNA processing, and particularly at the level of translation initiation. In chloroplasts of higher plants, translation elongation is the prevalent mechanism for regulation of the psbA gene expression. The pre-existing pool of psbA transcripts forms translation initiation complexes in plant chloroplasts even in darkness, while the D1 synthesis can be completed only in the light. Replacement of damaged D1 protein requires also the assistance by a number of auxiliary proteins, which are encoded by the nuclear genome in green algae and higher plants. Nevertheless, many of these chaperones are conserved between prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Here, we describe the specific features and fundamental differences of the psbA gene expression and the regeneration of the PSII reaction center protein D1 in cyanobacteria, green algae and higher plants. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Photosystem II.

  9. Two Bee-Pollinated Plant Species Show Higher Seed Production when Grown in Gardens Compared to Arable Farmland

    PubMed Central

    Cussans, John; Goulson, David; Sanderson, Roy; Goffe, Louis; Darvill, Ben; Osborne, Juliet L.

    2010-01-01

    Background Insect pollinator abundance, in particular that of bees, has been shown to be high where there is a super-abundance of floral resources; for example in association with mass-flowering crops and also in gardens where flowering plants are often densely planted. Since land management affects pollinator numbers, it is also likely to affect the resultant pollination of plants growing in these habitats. We hypothesised that the seed or fruit set of two plant species, typically pollinated by bumblebees and/or honeybees might respond in one of two ways: 1) pollination success could be reduced when growing in a floriferous environment, via competition for pollinators, or 2) pollination success could be enhanced because of increased pollinator abundance in the vicinity. Methodology/Principal Findings We compared the pollination success of experimental plants of Glechoma hederacea L. and Lotus corniculatus L. growing in gardens and arable farmland. On the farms, the plants were placed either next to a mass-flowering crop (oilseed rape, Brassica napus L. or field beans, Vicia faba L.) or next to a cereal crop (wheat, Triticum spp.). Seed set of G. hederacea and fruit set of L. corniculatus were significantly higher in gardens compared to arable farmland. There was no significant difference in pollination success of G. hederacea when grown next to different crops, but for L. corniculatus, fruit set was higher in the plants growing next to oilseed rape when the crop was in flower. Conclusions/Significance The results show that pollination services can limit fruit set of wild plants in arable farmland, but there is some evidence that the presence of a flowering crop can facilitate their pollination (depending on species and season). We have also demonstrated that gardens are not only beneficial to pollinators, but also to the process of pollination. PMID:20668704

  10. Evolutionary Strata on the X Chromosomes of the Dioecious Plant Silene latifolia: Evidence From New Sex-Linked Genes

    PubMed Central

    Bergero, Roberta; Forrest, Alan; Kamau, Esther; Charlesworth, Deborah

    2007-01-01

    Despite its recent evolutionary origin, the sex chromosome system of the plant Silene latifolia shows signs of progressive suppression of recombination having created evolutionary strata of different X–Y divergence on sex chromosomes. However, even after 8 years of effort, this result is based on analyses of five sex-linked gene sequences, and the maximum divergence (and thus the age of this plant's sex chromosome system) has remained uncertain. More genes are therefore needed. Here, by segregation analysis of intron size variants (ISVS) and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), we identify three new Y-linked genes, one being duplicated on the Y chromosome, and test for evolutionary strata. All the new genes have homologs on the X and Y chromosomes. Synonymous divergence estimated between the X and Y homolog pairs is within the range of those already reported. Genetic mapping of the new X-linked loci shows that the map is the same in all three families that have been studied so far and that X–Y divergence increases with genetic distance from the pseudoautosomal region. We can now conclude that the divergence value is saturated, confirming the cessation of X–Y recombination in the evolution of the sex chromosomes at ∼10–20 MYA. PMID:17287532

  11. A lost link between a flightless parrot and a parasitic plant and the potential role of coprolites in conservation paleobiology.

    PubMed

    Wood, Jamie R; Wilmshurst, Janet M; Worthy, Trevor H; Holzapfel, Avi S; Cooper, Alan

    2012-12-01

    Late Quaternary extinctions and population fragmentations have severely disrupted animal-plant interactions globally. Detection of disrupted interactions often relies on anachronistic plant characteristics, such as spines in the absence of large herbivores or large fruit without dispersers. However, obvious anachronisms are relatively uncommon, and it can be difficult to prove a direct link between the anachronism and a particular faunal taxon. Analysis of coprolites (fossil feces) provides a novel way of exposing lost interactions between animals (depositors) and consumed organisms. We analyzed ancient DNA to show that a coprolite from the South Island of New Zealand was deposited by the rare and threatened kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), a large, nocturnal, flightless parrot. When we analyzed the pollen and spore content of the coprolite, we found pollen from the cryptic root-parasite Dactylanthus taylorii. The relatively high abundance (8.9% of total pollen and spores) of this zoophilous pollen type in the coprolite supports the hypothesis of a former direct feeding interaction between kakapo and D. taylorii. The ranges of both species have contracted substantially since human settlement, and their present distributions no longer overlap. Currently, the lesser short-tailed bat (Mystacina tuberculata) is the only known native pollinator of D. taylorii, but our finding raises the possibility that birds, and other small fauna, could have once fed on and pollinated the plant. If confirmed, through experimental work and observations, this finding may inform conservation of the plant. For example, it may be possible to translocate D. taylorii to predator-free offshore islands that lack bats but have thriving populations of endemic nectar-feeding birds. The study of coprolites of rare or extinct taxonomic groups provides a unique way forward to expand existing knowledge of lost plant and animal interactions and to identify pollination and dispersal syndromes. This

  12. Labile carbon concentrations are strongly linked to plant production in Arctic tussock tundra soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Darrouzet-Nardi, A.; Weintraub, M. N.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Steltzer, H.; Sullivan, P.

    2013-12-01

    The exchange of carbon and nutrients between plants and microbes is a key determinant of carbon balance in Arctic soils. Microbes rely on labile plant carbon for the energy they need to produce enzymes that can release nutrients and less energetically favorable carbon from soil organic matter. One of the main mechanisms of carbon transfer is rhizodeposition, the exudation of labile plant carbon such as sugars from roots into the rhizosphere. Despite the importance of this flow of energy and materials from plants to microbes, there have been few attempts to quantify labile carbon pools or fluxes in Arctic soils. To improve our knowledge of labile carbon dynamics in Arctic soils, we address two basic questions: (1) What are the seasonal patterns of labile carbon concentrations? and (2) How do seasonal patterns in labile carbon correlate with plant production, microbial biomass, and soil nutrients? We measured concentrations of total reducing sugars (TRS) in the soil solution of moist acidic tussock tundra on 28 dates during the 2012 growing season in 20 plots of an early snowmelt × warming experiment. We evaluated these total reducing sugar concentrations in the context of eddy flux carbon exchange data, plant NDVI, total dissolved carbon in soils, microbial biomass, and soil nutrients. Though we did not see treatment effects of the snowmelt × warming experiment, we did observe a clear seasonal pattern in TRS concentrations in which they started low at the time of thaw, then built to a maximum value around the time of peak plant physiology in July, followed by a decline as plants senesced. We observed a clear correlation between TRS and gross primary production (GPP). NDVI values also increased with TRS concentrations during the first half of the season and then leveled off as TRS began its decline. These relationships were in contrast to labile N concentrations, which remained at low concentrations all season. Our data suggest that rhizodeposition of labile carbon

  13. The Heavy Links between Geological Events and Vascular Plants Evolution: A Brief Outline

    PubMed Central

    Piombino, Aldo

    2016-01-01

    Since the rise of photosynthesis, life has influenced terrestrial atmosphere, particularly the O2 and the CO2 content (the latter being originally more than 95%), changing the chemistry of waters, atmosphere, and soils. Billions of years after, a far offspring of these first unicellular forms conquered emerging lands, not only completely changing landscape, but also modifying geological cycles of deposition and erosion, many chemical and physical characteristics of soils and fresh waters, and, more, the cycle of various elements. So, there are no doubts that vascular plants modified geology; but it is true that also geology has affected (and, more, has driven) plant evolution. New software, PyRate, has determined vascular plant origin and diversification through a Bayesian analysis of fossil record from Silurian to today, particularly observing their origination and extinction rate. A comparison between PyRate data and geological history suggests that geological events massively influenced plant evolution and that also the rise of nonflowering seed plants and the fast diffusion of flowering plants can be explained, almost partly, with the environmental condition changes induced by geological phenomena. PMID:26966609

  14. The Heavy Links between Geological Events and Vascular Plants Evolution: A Brief Outline.

    PubMed

    Piombino, Aldo

    2016-01-01

    Since the rise of photosynthesis, life has influenced terrestrial atmosphere, particularly the O2 and the CO2 content (the latter being originally more than 95%), changing the chemistry of waters, atmosphere, and soils. Billions of years after, a far offspring of these first unicellular forms conquered emerging lands, not only completely changing landscape, but also modifying geological cycles of deposition and erosion, many chemical and physical characteristics of soils and fresh waters, and, more, the cycle of various elements. So, there are no doubts that vascular plants modified geology; but it is true that also geology has affected (and, more, has driven) plant evolution. New software, PyRate, has determined vascular plant origin and diversification through a Bayesian analysis of fossil record from Silurian to today, particularly observing their origination and extinction rate. A comparison between PyRate data and geological history suggests that geological events massively influenced plant evolution and that also the rise of nonflowering seed plants and the fast diffusion of flowering plants can be explained, almost partly, with the environmental condition changes induced by geological phenomena.

  15. Nitrogen deposition alters plant-fungal relationships: linking belowground dynamics to aboveground vegetation change.

    PubMed

    Dean, Sarah L; Farrer, Emily C; Taylor, D Lee; Porras-Alfaro, Andrea; Suding, Katharine N; Sinsabaugh, Robert L

    2014-03-01

    Nitrogen (N) deposition rates are increasing globally due to anthropogenic activities. Plant community responses to N are often attributed to altered competitive interactions between plants, but may also be a result of microbial responses to N, particularly root-associated fungi (RAF), which are known to affect plant fitness. In response to N, Deschampsia cespitosa, a codominant plant in the alpine tundra at Niwot Ridge (CO), increases in abundance, while Geum rossii, its principal competitor, declines. Importantly, G. rossii declines with N even in the absence of its competitor. We examined whether contrasting host responses to N are associated with altered plant-fungal symbioses, and whether the effects of N are distinct from effects of altered plant competition on RAF, using 454 pyrosequencing. Host RAF communities were distinct (only 9.4% of OTUs overlapped). N increased RAF diversity in G. rossii, but decreased it in D. cespitosa. D. cespitosa RAF communities were more responsive to N than G. rossii RAF communities, perhaps indicating a flexible microbial community aids host adaptation to nutrient enrichment. Effects of removing D. cespitosa were distinct from effects of N on G. rossii RAF, and D. cespitosa presence reversed RAF diversity response to N. The most dominant G. rossii RAF order, Helotiales, was the most affected by N, declining from 83% to 60% of sequences, perhaps indicating a loss of mutualists under N enrichment. These results highlight the potential importance of belowground microbial dynamics in plant responses to N deposition.

  16. Differentiating moss from higher plants is critical in studying the carbon cycle of the boreal biome.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Wenping; Liu, Shuguang; Dong, Wenjie; Liang, Shunlin; Zhao, Shuqing; Chen, Jingming; Xu, Wenfang; Li, Xianglan; Barr, Alan; Andrew Black, T; Yan, Wende; Goulden, Mike L; Kulmala, Liisa; Lindroth, Anders; Margolis, Hank A; Matsuura, Yojiro; Moors, Eddy; van der Molen, Michiel; Ohta, Takeshi; Pilegaard, Kim; Varlagin, Andrej; Vesala, Timo

    2014-06-26

    The satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), which is used for estimating gross primary production (GPP), often includes contributions from both mosses and vascular plants in boreal ecosystems. For the same NDVI, moss can generate only about one-third of the GPP that vascular plants can because of its much lower photosynthetic capacity. Here, based on eddy covariance measurements, we show that the difference in photosynthetic capacity between these two plant functional types has never been explicitly included when estimating regional GPP in the boreal region, resulting in a substantial overestimation. The magnitude of this overestimation could have important implications regarding a change from a current carbon sink to a carbon source in the boreal region. Moss abundance, associated with ecosystem disturbances, needs to be mapped and incorporated into GPP estimates in order to adequately assess the role of the boreal region in the global carbon cycle.

  17. Can genetically based clines in plant defence explain greater herbivory at higher latitudes?

    PubMed

    Anstett, Daniel N; Ahern, Jeffrey R; Glinos, Julia; Nawar, Nabanita; Salminen, Juha-Pekka; Johnson, Marc T J

    2015-12-01

    Greater plant defence is predicted to evolve at lower latitudes in response to increased herbivore pressure. However, recent studies question the generality of this pattern. In this study, we tested for genetically based latitudinal clines in resistance to herbivores and underlying defence traits of Oenothera biennis. We grew plants from 137 populations from across the entire native range of O. biennis. Populations from lower latitudes showed greater resistance to multiple specialist and generalist herbivores. These patterns were associated with an increase in total phenolics at lower latitudes. A significant proportion of the phenolics were driven by the concentrations of two major ellagitannins, which exhibited opposing latitudinal clines. Our analyses suggest that these findings are unlikely to be explained by local adaptation of herbivore populations or genetic variation in phenology. Rather greater herbivory at high latitudes can be explained by latitudinal clines in the evolution of plant defences.

  18. Testing Crew Responses to Varied Higher Plant Presentations in the MARS-500 Day Mission Simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marquit, J. D.; Bates, S. C.; Gushin, V. I.; Synchev, V. N.; Levinskikh, M. A.; Podolsky, I. G.; Marchant, C. C.; Bingham, G. E.

    2008-06-01

    Maintaining psychological and behavioral health of humans during long-duration space missions is of great importance for the future success of space exploration as the hostile space environment adversely impacts the psychological, social, and physiological well-being of humans in space. Growing and tending plants has been proposed as a countermeasures for the negative impacts of long-duration space missions[3] as interactions with plant life on earth have been found to be beneficial to humans in other settings. Preliminary results from a pilot 14-day chamber study appear to support the notion that interactions with plant life may act as a countermeasure for the negative impacts of life in space. Additional data will be collected during the Mars 500-day Chamber Study at Institute of Biomedical Problems (IMBP).

  19. Processes entangling interactions in communities: forbidden links are more important than abundance in a hummingbird-plant network.

    PubMed

    Vizentin-Bugoni, Jeferson; Maruyama, Pietro Kiyoshi; Sazima, Marlies

    2014-04-07

    Understanding the relative importance of multiple processes on structuring species interactions within communities is one of the major challenges in ecology. Here, we evaluated the relative importance of species abundance and forbidden links in structuring a hummingbird-plant interaction network from the Atlantic rainforest in Brazil. Our results show that models incorporating phenological overlapping and morphological matches were more accurate in predicting the observed interactions than models considering species abundance. This means that forbidden links, by imposing constraints on species interactions, play a greater role than species abundance in structuring the ecological network. We also show that using the frequency of interaction as a proxy for species abundance and network metrics to describe the detailed network structure might lead to biased conclusions regarding mechanisms generating network structure. Together, our findings suggest that species abundance can be a less important driver of species interactions in communities than previously thought.

  20. Processes entangling interactions in communities: forbidden links are more important than abundance in a hummingbird–plant network

    PubMed Central

    Vizentin-Bugoni, Jeferson; Maruyama, Pietro Kiyoshi; Sazima, Marlies

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the relative importance of multiple processes on structuring species interactions within communities is one of the major challenges in ecology. Here, we evaluated the relative importance of species abundance and forbidden links in structuring a hummingbird–plant interaction network from the Atlantic rainforest in Brazil. Our results show that models incorporating phenological overlapping and morphological matches were more accurate in predicting the observed interactions than models considering species abundance. This means that forbidden links, by imposing constraints on species interactions, play a greater role than species abundance in structuring the ecological network. We also show that using the frequency of interaction as a proxy for species abundance and network metrics to describe the detailed network structure might lead to biased conclusions regarding mechanisms generating network structure. Together, our findings suggest that species abundance can be a less important driver of species interactions in communities than previously thought. PMID:24552835

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-01-01

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

  2. Conservation and diversity of gene families explored using the CODEHOP strategy in higher plants

    PubMed Central

    Morant, Marc; Hehn, Alain; Werck-Reichhart, Danièle

    2002-01-01

    Background Availability of genomewide information on an increasing but still limited number of plants offers the possibility of identifying orthologues, or related genes, in species with major economical impact and complex genomes. In this paper we exploit the recently described CODEHOP primer design and PCR strategy for targeted isolation of homologues in large gene families. Results The method was tested with two different objectives. The first was to analyze the evolution of the CYP98 family of cytochrome P450 genes involved in 3-hydroxylation of phenolic compounds and lignification in a broad range of plant species. The second was to isolate an orthologue of the sorghum glucosyl transferase UGT85B1 and to determine the complexity of the UGT85 family in wheat. P450s of the CYP98 family or closely related sequences were found in all vascular plants. No related sequence was found in moss. Neither extensive duplication of the CYP98 genes nor an orthologue of UGT85B1 were found in wheat. The UGT85A subfamily was however found to be highly variable in wheat. Conclusions Our data are in agreement with the implication of CYP98s in lignification and the evolution of 3-hydroxylation of lignin precursors with vascular plants. High conservation of the CYP98 family strongly argues in favour of an essential function in plant development. Conversely, high duplication and diversification of the UGT85A gene family in wheat suggests its involvement in adaptative response and provides a valuable pool of genes for biotechnological applications. This work demonstrates the high potential of the CODEHOP strategy for the exploration of large gene families in plants. PMID:12153706

  3. Higher accumulation of F1-V fusion recombinant protein in plants after induction of protein body formation.

    PubMed

    Alvarez, M Lucrecia; Topal, Emel; Martin, Federico; Cardineau, Guy A

    2010-01-01

    Improving foreign protein accumulation is crucial for enhancing the commercial success of plant-based production systems since product yields have a major influence on process economics. Cereal grain evolved to store large amounts of proteins in tightly organized aggregates. In maize, gamma-Zein is the major storage protein synthesized by the rough endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and stored in specialized organelles called protein bodies (PB). Zera (gamma-Zein ER-accumulating domain) is the N-terminal proline-rich domain of gamma-zein that is sufficient to induce the assembly of PB formation. Fusion of the Zera domain to proteins of interest results in assembly of dense PB-like, ER-derived organelles, containing high concentration of recombinant protein. Our main goal was to increase recombinant protein accumulation in plants in order to enhance the efficiency of orally-delivered plant-made vaccines. It is well known that oral vaccination requires substantially higher doses than parental formulations. As a part of a project to develop a plant-made plague vaccine, we expressed our model antigen, the Yersinia pestis F1-V antigen fusion protein, with and without a fused Zera domain. We demonstrated that Zera-F1-V protein accumulation was at least 3x higher than F1-V alone when expressed in three different host plant systems: Ncotiana benthamiana, Medicago sativa (alfalfa) and Nicotiana tabacum NT1 cells. We confirmed the feasibility of using Zera technology to induce protein body formation in non-seed tissues. Zera expression and accumulation did not affect plant development and growth. These results confirmed the potential exploitation of Zera technology to substantially increase the accumulation of value-added proteins in plants.

  4. TCP three-way handshake: linking developmental processes with plant immunity.

    PubMed

    Lopez, Jessica A; Sun, Yali; Blair, Peter B; Mukhtar, M Shahid

    2015-04-01

    The TCP gene family encodes plant-specific transcription factors involved in growth and development. Equally important are the interactions between TCP factors and other pathways extending far beyond development, as they have been found to regulate a variety of hormonal pathways and signaling cascades. Recent advances reveal that TCP factors are targets of pathogenic effectors and are likely to play a vital role in plant immunity. Our focus is on reviewing the involvement of TCP in known pathways and shedding light on other linkages in the nexus of plant immunity centered around TCP factors with an emphasis on the convergence of effectors, interconnected hormonal networks, utility of the circadian clock, and the potential mechanisms by which pathogen defense may occur.

  5. Plant canopy transpiration in bioregenerative life support systems - The link between mechanistic and empirical models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sirko, Robert J.; Mccormack, Ann C.; Edeen, Marybeth A.

    1992-01-01

    A model of water transpiration in a plant canopy that combines two approaches is presented. The first approach is to account for underlying physical processes, while the second is to empirically incorporate transpiration data now being generated at the Johnson Center Variable Pressure Growth Chamber. The two approaches, physical modeling and data analysis, make it possible to produce a model that is more robust than either the standard first-principles model or a straightforward empirical model. It is shown that the present transpiration model is able to efficiently capture the dynamic behavior of the plant canopy over the entire range of environmental parameters now envisioned to be important in an operating controlled ecological life support system (CELSS). Examples of the use of this model in assessing plant canopy dynamics and CELSS design options are also presented.

  6. Maize R2R3 Myb genes: Sequence analysis reveals amplification in the higher plants.

    PubMed

    Rabinowicz, P D; Braun, E L; Wolfe, A D; Bowen, B; Grotewold, E

    1999-09-01

    Transcription factors containing the Myb-homologous DNA-binding domain are widely found in eukaryotes. In plants, R2R3 Myb-domain proteins are involved in the control of form and metabolism. The Arabidopsis genome harbors >100 R2R3 Myb genes, but few have been found in monocots, animals, and fungi. Using RT-PCR from different maize organs, we cloned 480 fragments corresponding to a 42-44 residue-long sequence spanning the region between the conserved DNA-recognition helices (Myb(BRH)) of R2R3 Myb domains. We determined that maize expresses >80 different R2R3 Myb genes, and evolutionary distances among maize Myb(BRH) sequences indicate that most of the amplification of the R2R3 Myb gene family occurred after the origin of land plants but prior to the separation of monocots and dicots. In addition, evidence is provided for the very recent duplication of particular classes of R2R3 Myb genes in the grasses. Together, these findings render a novel line of evidence for the amplification of the R2R3 Myb gene family in the early history of land plants and suggest that maize provides a possible model system to examine the hypothesis that the expansion of Myb genes is associated with the regulation of novel plant cellular functions.

  7. Higher effect of plant species diversity on productivity in natural than artificial ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Flombaum, Pedro; Sala, Osvaldo E.

    2008-01-01

    Current and expected changes in biodiversity have motivated major experiments, which reported a positive relationship between plant species diversity and primary production. As a first step in addressing this relationship, these manipulative experiments controlled as many potential confounding covariables as possible and assembled artificial ecosystems for the purpose of the experiments. As a new step in this endeavor, we asked how plant species richness relates to productivity in a natural ecosystem. Here, we report on an experiment conducted in a natural ecosystem in the Patagonian steppe, in which we assessed the biodiversity effect on primary production. Using a plant species diversity gradient generated by removing species while maintaining constant biomass, we found that aboveground net primary production increased with the number of plant species. We also found that the biodiversity effect was larger in natural than in artificial ecosystems. This result supports previous findings and also suggests that the effect of biodiversity in natural ecosystems may be much larger than currently thought. PMID:18427124

  8. Phosphoinositide kinases and the synthesis of polyphosphoinositides in higher plant cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Drobak, B. K.; Dewey, R. E.; Boss, W. F.; Davies, E. (Principal Investigator)

    1999-01-01

    Phosphoinositides are a family of inositol-containing phospholipids which are present in all eukaryotic cells. Although in most cells these lipids, with the exception of phosphatidylinositol, constitute only a very minor proportion of total cellular lipids, they have received immense attention by researchers in the past 15-20 years. This is due to the discovery that these lipids, rather than just having structural functions, play key roles in a wide range of important cellular processes. Much less is known about the plant phosphoinositides than about their mammalian counterparts. However, it has been established that a functional phosphoinositide system exists in plant cells and it is becoming increasingly clear that inositol-containing lipids are likely to play many important roles throughout the life of a plant. It is not our intention to give an exhaustive overview of all aspects of the field, but rather we focus on the phosphoinositide kinases responsible for the synthesis of all phosphorylated forms of phosphatidylinositol. Also, we mention some of the aspects of current phosphoinositide research which, in our opinion, are most likely to provide a suitable starting point for further research into the role of phosphoinositides in plants.

  9. Selection for Higher Gene Copy Number after Different Types of Plant Gene Duplications

    PubMed Central

    Hudson, Corey M.; Puckett, Emily E.; Bekaert, Michaël; Pires, J. Chris; Conant, Gavin C.

    2011-01-01

    The evolutionary origins of the multitude of duplicate genes in the plant genomes are still incompletely understood. To gain an appreciation of the potential selective forces acting on these duplicates, we phylogenetically inferred the set of metabolic gene families from 10 flowering plant (angiosperm) genomes. We then compared the metabolic fluxes for these families, predicted using the Arabidopsis thaliana and Sorghum bicolor metabolic networks, with the families' duplication propensities. For duplications produced by both small scale (small-scale duplications) and genome duplication (whole-genome duplications), there is a significant association between the flux and the tendency to duplicate. Following this global analysis, we made a more fine-scale study of the selective constraints observed on plant sodium and phosphate transporters. We find that the different duplication mechanisms give rise to differing selective constraints. However, the exact nature of this pattern varies between the gene families, and we argue that the duplication mechanism alone does not define a duplicated gene's subsequent evolutionary trajectory. Collectively, our results argue for the interplay of history, function, and selection in shaping the duplicate gene evolution in plants. PMID:22056313

  10. Plant species richness belowground: higher richness and new patterns revealed by next-generation sequencing.

    PubMed

    Hiiesalu, Inga; Opik, Maarja; Metsis, Madis; Lilje, Liisa; Davison, John; Vasar, Martti; Moora, Mari; Zobel, Martin; Wilson, Scott D; Pärtel, Meelis

    2012-04-01

    Variation in plant species richness has been described using only aboveground vegetation. The species richness of roots and rhizomes has never been compared with aboveground richness in natural plant communities. We made direct comparisons of grassland plant richness in identical volumes (0.1 × 0.1 × 0.1 m) above and below the soil surface, using conventional species identification to measure aboveground richness and 454 sequencing of the chloroplast trnL(UAA) intron to measure belowground richness. We described above- and belowground richness at multiple spatial scales (from a neighbourhood scale of centimetres to a community scale of hundreds of metres), and related variation in richness to soil fertility. Tests using reference material indicated that 454 sequencing captured patterns of species composition and abundance with acceptable accuracy. At neighbourhood scales, belowground richness was up to two times greater than aboveground richness. The relationship between above- and belowground richness was significantly different from linear: beyond a certain level of belowground richness, aboveground richness did not increase further. Belowground richness also exceeded that of aboveground at the community scale, indicating that some species are temporarily dormant and absent aboveground. Similar to other grassland studies, aboveground richness declined with increasing soil fertility; in contrast, the number of species found only belowground increased significantly with fertility. These results indicate that conventional aboveground studies of plant richness may overlook many coexisting species, and that belowground richness becomes relatively more important in conditions where aboveground richness decreases. Measuring plant belowground richness can considerably alter perceptions of biodiversity and its responses to natural and anthropogenic factors.

  11. Hormonal interactions and gene regulation can link monoecy and environmental plasticity to the evolution of dioecy in plants.

    PubMed

    Golenberg, Edward M; West, Nicholas W

    2013-06-01

    Most models for dioecy in flowering plants assume that dioecy arises directly from hermaphroditism through a series of independent feminizing and masculinizing mutations that become chromosomally linked. However, dioecy appears to evolve most frequently through monoecious grades. The major genetic models do not explain the evolution of unisexual flowers in monoecious and submonoecious populations, nor do they account for environmentally induced sexual plasticity. In this review, we explore the roles of environmental stress and hormones on sex determination, and propose a model that can explain the evolution of dioecy through monoecy, and the mechanisms of environmental sex determination. Environmental stresses elicit hormones that allow plants to mediate the negative effects of the stresses. Many of these same hormones are involved in the regulation of floral developmental genes. Recent studies have elucidated the mechanisms whereby these hormones interact and can act as switchpoints in regulatory pathways. Consequently, differential concentrations of plant hormones can regulate whole developmental pathways, providing a mechanism for differential development within isogenic individuals such as seen in monoecious plants. Sex-determining genes in such systems will evolve to generate clusters of coexpressed suites. Coexpression rather than coinheritance of gender-specific genes will define the sexual developmental fate. Therefore, selection for gender type will drive evolution of the regulatory sequences of such genes rather than their synteny. Subsequent mutations to hyper- or hyposensitive alleles within the hormone response pathway can result in segregating dioecious populations. Simultaneously, such developmental systems will remain sensitive to external stimuli that modify hormone responses.

  12. Trophic links between functional groups of arable plants and beetles are stable at a national scale.

    PubMed

    Brooks, David R; Storkey, Jonathan; Clark, Suzanne J; Firbank, Les G; Petit, Sandrine; Woiwod, Ian P

    2012-01-01

    1. There is an urgent need to accurately model how environmental change affects the wide-scale functioning of ecosystems, but advances are hindered by a lack of knowledge of how trophic levels are linked across space. It is unclear which theoretical approach to take to improve modelling of such interactions, but evidence is gathering that linking species responses to their functional traits can increase understanding of ecosystem dynamics. Currently, there are no quantitative studies testing how this approach might improve models of multiple, trophically interacting species, at wide spatial scales. 2. Arable weeds play a foundational role in linking food webs, providing resources for many taxa, including carabid beetles that feed on their seeds and weed-associated invertebrate prey. Here, we model associations between weeds and carabids across farmland in Great Britain (GB), to test the hypothesis that wide-scale trophic links between these groups are structured by their species functional traits. 3. A network of c. 250 arable fields, covering four crops and most lowland areas of GB, was sampled for weed, carabid and invertebrate taxa over 3 years. Data sets of these groups were closely matched in time and space, and each contained numerous species with a range of eco-physiological traits. The consistency of trophic linkages between multiple taxa sharing functional traits was tested within multivariate and log-linear models. 4. Robust links were established between the functional traits of taxa and their trophic interactions. Autumn-germinating, small-seeded weeds were associated with smaller, spring-breeding carabids, more specialised in seed feeding, whereas spring-germinating, large-seeded weeds were associated with a range of larger, autumn-breeding omnivorous carabids. These relationships were strong and dynamic, being independent of changes in invertebrate food resources and consistent across sample dates, crops and regions of GB. 5. We conclude that, in at

  13. Traditional uses of plants in a rural community of Mozambique and possible links with Miombo degradation and harvesting sustainability

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Miombo woodlands play an important role in the livelihood of people living in sub-equatorial African countries, contributing to satisfy basic human needs such as food, medicine, fuelwood and building materials. However, over-exploitation of plant resources and unsustainable harvest practices can potentially degrade forests. The aim of this study was to document the use of Miombo plant products, other than medicinal plants, in local communities, within a wider framework in which we discussed possible links between traditional uses and conservation status of the used species and of the whole Miombo environment. Methods Fieldwork took place in four communities of Muda-Serração, central Mozambique. We conducted semi-structured interviews with 52 informants about their knowledge, use and harvesting practices of useful plants. A survey on local Miombo vegetation was also carried out in order to assess abundance and distribution of useful woody plants cited in the interviews in areas exposed to different exploitation rates. A Conservation Priority index was also applied to rank conservation values of each used woody species. Results Ninety-eight plants cited by the informants were botanically identified. The most relevant general category was represented by food plants (45 species), followed by handicraft plants (38 species) and domestic plants (37 species). Among the 54 woody species observed in vegetation plots, 52% were cited as useful in the interviews. Twenty-six woody species found in ‘natural’ Miombo areas were not found in ‘degraded’ ones: of these, 46% were cited in the interviews (58% in the food category, 50% in the handicraft category, 25% in the domestic category and 8% in the fishing category). Results of conservation ranking showed that 7 woody species deserve conservation priority in the investigated area. Conclusions This study shows that the communities investigated rely heavily on local forest products for their daily subsistence

  14. SNP markers linked to QTL conditioning plant height, lodging, and maturity in soybean

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soybean (Glycine max L. Merr.) is a major crop and a leading source of protein meal and edible oil worldwide. Plant height (PHT), lodging (LDG), and days to maturity (MAT) are three important agronomic traits that influence the seed yield of soybean. The objective of this study was to map quantitati...

  15. Apprenticeship in Higher Education in France: An Experimental Device to Help Apprentices to Link Academic Knowledge and Work Experience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hahn, Corinne

    2012-01-01

    The French apprenticeship system has been an object of research in France for more than 30 years now, by experts from different backgrounds. Over the past 15 years apprenticeship has grown significantly in higher education. At this level, if a greater importance is attached to theory, it becomes more difficult to connect this theory to more…

  16. Promoting Environmental Education for Sustainable Development: The Value of Links between Higher Education and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haigh, Martin J.

    2006-01-01

    Environmental sustainability education, the dissemination of environmental education for sustainable development into the community, should be a lifelong process and not one restricted to a learner's years in higher education. Informal environmental sustainability education, including personal involvement in NGO environmental action, can be an…

  17. A Critical Evaluation of Recent Progress in Understanding the Role of the Research-Teaching Link in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Malcolm, Mary

    2014-01-01

    Research into the relationship between research and teaching in higher education has flourished over several decades, and the most recent research phase has focused particularly on how the research-teaching nexus can enhance the quality and outcomes of the learning experience for both students and academics. On the basis of bibliographic review,…

  18. Developing a Model for a "Ladder of Incubation" Linked to Higher and Further Education Institutions in Wales

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Voisey, Pam; Gornall, Lynne; Jones, Paul; Thomas, Brychan

    2005-01-01

    Business incubators play a critical role in economic regeneration through the development and support of new and sustainable enterprises. Many UK incubator projects are funded by the European Commission through the higher education sector. This study compares and contrasts six business incubation case studies and identifies significant criteria…

  19. Integration of a Higher Plant Chamber into the European Space Agency's MELiSSA Pilot Plant: The Canadian Role in Advanced Life Support Test-Bed Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Waters, Geoffrey; Lawson, Jamie; Gidzinski, Danuta; Stasiak, Michael; Dixon, Mike; Peiro, Enrique; Godia, Francesc; Paille, Christel; Fossen, Arnaud; Lamaze, Brigitte; Lasseur, Christophe

    The European Space Agency's Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative (MELiSSA) project has been conceived as a tool for developing the technology of future biological life support systems required for long-term human space exploration missions to the Moon or Mars. The main life support functions of MELiSSA are the recycling of waste (inedible plant biomass, human excrement), carbon dioxide and minerals and the production of food, fresh water and air revitalization. Based on the principle of an aquatic ecosystem, MELiSSA is comprised of four microbial compartments and a higher plant compartment integrated in a closed loop. Each compartment is studied, designed and demonstrated at laboratory scale before being scaled-up for subsequent integration into the MELISSA Pilot Plant (MPP) at the Universitat Aut`noma de Barcelona. Work related to higher plant cultivation systems, o which have been historically focussed at the University of Guelph's Controlled Environment Systems Research Facility (CESRF), has included design of the HPC for the MPP, the metabolic characterization of MELiSSA candidate crops and the validation of theoretical gas exchange and nutrient dynamic models, The presented paper will review some of the recent data and HPC design work of CESRF conducted as part of Canada's involvement in the MELiSSA program and its partnership in the development of the MPP terrestrial demonstration test-bed.

  20. Linking Native and Invader Traits Explains Native Spider Population Responses to Plant Invasion.

    PubMed

    Smith, Jennifer N; Emlen, Douglas J; Pearson, Dean E

    2016-01-01

    Theoretically, the functional traits of native species should determine how natives respond to invader-driven changes. To explore this idea, we simulated a large-scale plant invasion using dead spotted knapweed (Centaurea stoebe) stems to determine if native spiders' web-building behaviors could explain differences in spider population responses to structural changes arising from C. stoebe invasion. After two years, irregular web-spiders were >30 times more abundant and orb weavers were >23 times more abundant on simulated invasion plots compared to controls. Additionally, irregular web-spiders on simulated invasion plots built webs that were 4.4 times larger and 5.0 times more likely to capture prey, leading to >2-fold increases in recruitment. Orb-weavers showed no differences in web size or prey captures between treatments. Web-spider responses to simulated invasion mimicked patterns following natural invasions, confirming that C. stoebe's architecture is likely the primary attribute driving native spider responses to these invasions. Differences in spider responses were attributable to differences in web construction behaviors relative to historic web substrate constraints. Orb-weavers in this system constructed webs between multiple plants, so they were limited by the overall quantity of native substrates but not by the architecture of individual native plant species. Irregular web-spiders built their webs within individual plants and were greatly constrained by the diminutive architecture of native plant substrates, so they were limited both by quantity and quality of native substrates. Evaluating native species traits in the context of invader-driven change can explain invasion outcomes and help to identify factors limiting native populations.

  1. Plant secondary metabolism linked glycosyltransferases: An update on expanding knowledge and scopes.

    PubMed

    Tiwari, Pragya; Sangwan, Rajender Singh; Sangwan, Neelam S

    2016-01-01

    The multigene family of enzymes known as glycosyltransferases or popularly known as GTs catalyze the addition of carbohydrate moiety to a variety of synthetic as well as natural compounds. Glycosylation of plant secondary metabolites is an emerging area of research in drug designing and development. The unsurpassing complexity and diversity among natural products arising due to glycosylation type of alterations including glycodiversification and glycorandomization are emerging as the promising approaches in pharmacological studies. While, some GTs with broad spectrum of substrate specificity are promising candidates for glycoengineering while others with stringent specificity pose limitations in accepting molecules and performing catalysis. With the rising trends in diseases and the efficacy/potential of natural products in their treatment, glycosylation of plant secondary metabolites constitutes a key mechanism in biogeneration of their glycoconjugates possessing medicinal properties. The present review highlights the role of glycosyltransferases in plant secondary metabolism with an overview of their identification strategies, catalytic mechanism and structural studies on plant GTs. Furthermore, the article discusses the biotechnological and biomedical application of GTs ranging from detoxification of xenobiotics and hormone homeostasis to the synthesis of glycoconjugates and crop engineering. The future directions in glycosyltransferase research should focus on the synthesis of bioactive glycoconjugates via metabolic engineering and manipulation of enzyme's active site leading to improved/desirable catalytic properties. The multiple advantages of glycosylation in plant secondary metabolomics highlight the increasing significance of the GTs, and in near future, the enzyme superfamily may serve as promising path for progress in expanding drug targets for pharmacophore discovery and development.

  2. Linking Native and Invader Traits Explains Native Spider Population Responses to Plant Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Emlen, Douglas J.; Pearson, Dean E.

    2016-01-01

    Theoretically, the functional traits of native species should determine how natives respond to invader-driven changes. To explore this idea, we simulated a large-scale plant invasion using dead spotted knapweed (Centaurea stoebe) stems to determine if native spiders’ web-building behaviors could explain differences in spider population responses to structural changes arising from C. stoebe invasion. After two years, irregular web-spiders were >30 times more abundant and orb weavers were >23 times more abundant on simulated invasion plots compared to controls. Additionally, irregular web-spiders on simulated invasion plots built webs that were 4.4 times larger and 5.0 times more likely to capture prey, leading to >2-fold increases in recruitment. Orb-weavers showed no differences in web size or prey captures between treatments. Web-spider responses to simulated invasion mimicked patterns following natural invasions, confirming that C. stoebe’s architecture is likely the primary attribute driving native spider responses to these invasions. Differences in spider responses were attributable to differences in web construction behaviors relative to historic web substrate constraints. Orb-weavers in this system constructed webs between multiple plants, so they were limited by the overall quantity of native substrates but not by the architecture of individual native plant species. Irregular web-spiders built their webs within individual plants and were greatly constrained by the diminutive architecture of native plant substrates, so they were limited both by quantity and quality of native substrates. Evaluating native species traits in the context of invader-driven change can explain invasion outcomes and help to identify factors limiting native populations. PMID:27082240

  3. Sequence diversity patterns suggesting balancing selection in partially sex-linked genes of the plant Silene latifolia are not generated by demographic history or gene flow.

    PubMed

    Guirao-Rico, Sara; Sánchez-Gracia, Alejandro; Charlesworth, Deborah

    2017-03-01

    DNA sequence diversity in genes in the partially sex-linked pseudoautosomal region (PAR) of the sex chromosomes of the plant Silene latifolia is higher than expected from within-species diversity of other genes. This could be the footprint of sexually antagonistic (SA) alleles that are maintained by balancing selection in a PAR gene (or genes) and affect polymorphism in linked genome regions. SA selection is predicted to occur during sex chromosome evolution, but it is important to test whether the unexpectedly high sequence polymorphism could be explained without it, purely by the combined effects of partial linkage with the sex-determining region and the population's demographic history, including possible introgression from Silene dioica. To test this, we applied approximate Bayesian computation-based model choice to autosomal sequence diversity data, to find the most plausible scenario for the recent history of S. latifolia and then to estimate the posterior density of the most relevant parameters. We then used these densities to simulate variation to be expected at PAR genes. We conclude that an excess of variants at high frequencies at PAR genes should arise in S. latifolia populations only for genes with strong associations with fully sex-linked genes, which requires closer linkage with the fully sex-linked region than that estimated for the PAR genes where apparent deviations from neutrality were observed. These results support the need to invoke selection to explain the S. latifolia PAR gene diversity, and encourage further work to test the possibility of balancing selection due to sexual antagonism.

  4. Position based nucleotide analysis of miR168 family in higher plants and its targets in mammalian transcripts.

    PubMed

    Javed, Mohammed; Solanki, Manish; Sinha, Anshika; Shukla, Lata Israni

    2017-02-15

    The conserved miR168 family is evaluated for position based nucleotide preference in higher plants. The mature miRNA sequences include miR168-5p and miR168-3p, were obtained from miRBase (v21, June 2014) for 15 families (28 plants) containing a-c subfamilies. The preferred position based nucleotide sequences were obtained for miR168-5p and miR168-3p using Data Analysis in Molecular Biology and Evolution (DAMBE). miR168-5p shows same nucleotides at positions 1-6, 8-9, 11-12, 15-17 and 19. Also, miR168-3p is present in 3 families (10 plants) shows the same nucleotide at position 1-11, 13-15 and 17-21. Our work suggests that miR168 family has conserved sequence in higher plants. The miR168-5p was subjected to cross kingdom analysis using psRNATarget. The seed region position 2-8 shows 70-95% pairing and cleavage site at position 10-14 were analysed for the base preference, in which pairing with the targets showed 80-96% Watson Crick pairing. The 123 targets in human transcriptome were identified showing 58% cleavage and 41% translation repression. Earlier reported Low density lipoprotein receptor adaptor protein 1(LDLRAP1) target validated for miR168a obtained from rice origin, could also be targeted from miR168 from any other plant sources. The randomly selected 10 targets include some important genes like RPL34, ATXN1, AKAPI3 and ALS2 and is involved in transcription, cell trafficking, cell metabolism and neurodegenerative disorder. This paper provides DAMBE analysis for miR168 across the plant kingdom and identification of new cross kingdom targets for miR168 using psRNATarget.

  5. DNA repair and recombination in higher plants: insights from comparative genomics of arabidopsis and rice

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The DNA repair and recombination (DRR) proteins protect organisms against genetic damage, caused by environmental agents and other genotoxic agents, by removal of DNA lesions or helping to abide them. Results We identified genes potentially involved in DRR mechanisms in Arabidopsis and rice using similarity searches and conserved domain analysis against proteins known to be involved in DRR in human, yeast and E. coli. As expected, many of DRR genes are very similar to those found in other eukaryotes. Beside these eukaryotes specific genes, several prokaryotes specific genes were also found to be well conserved in plants. In Arabidopsis, several functionally important DRR gene duplications are present, which do not occur in rice. Among DRR proteins, we found that proteins belonging to the nucleotide excision repair pathway were relatively more conserved than proteins needed for the other DRR pathways. Sub-cellular localization studies of DRR gene suggests that these proteins are mostly reside in nucleus while gene drain in between nucleus and cell organelles were also found in some cases. Conclusions The similarities and dissimilarities in between plants and other organisms' DRR pathways are discussed. The observed differences broaden our knowledge about DRR in the plants world, and raises the potential question of whether differentiated functions have evolved in some cases. These results, altogether, provide a useful framework for further experimental studies in these organisms. PMID:20646326

  6. Causes and consequences of high osmotic potentials in epiphytic higher plants.

    PubMed

    Martin, Craig E; Lin, T C; Lin, K C; Hsu, C C; Chiou, W L

    2004-10-01

    Past reports of the water relations of epiphytes, particularly bromeliads, indicate that tissue osmotic potentials in these tropical and subtropical plants are very high (close to zero) and are similar to values for aquatic plants. This is puzzling because several ecophysiological studies have revealed a high degree of drought stress tolerance in some of these epiphytes. The goal of this study was two-fold: (1) to increase the number of epiphytic taxa sampled for tissue osmotic potentials; and (2) to explain the apparent discrepancy in the significance of the tissue water relations and tolerance of drought stress in epiphytes. Tissue osmotic potentials of 30 species of epiphytic ferns, lycophytes, and orchids were measured in a subtropical rain forest in northeastern Taiwan. Nearly all values were less negative than -1.0 MPa, in line with all previous data for epiphytes. It is argued that such high osmotic potentials, indicative of low solute concentrations, are the result of environmental constraints of the epiphytic habitat on productivity of these plants, and that low rates of photosynthesis and transpiration delay the onset of turgor loss in the tissues of epiphytes such that they appear to be very drought-stress tolerant. Maintenance of photosynthetic activity long into drought periods is ascribed to low rates of transpiration and, hence, delayed tissue desiccation, and hydration of the photosynthetic tissue at the expense of water from the water-storage parenchyma.

  7. Microbial Hub Taxa Link Host and Abiotic Factors to Plant Microbiome Variation

    PubMed Central

    Agler, Matthew T.; Ruhe, Jonas; Kroll, Samuel; Morhenn, Constanze; Kim, Sang-Tae; Weigel, Detlef; Kemen, Eric M.

    2016-01-01

    Plant-associated microorganisms have been shown to critically affect host physiology and performance, suggesting that evolution and ecology of plants and animals can only be understood in a holobiont (host and its associated organisms) context. Host-associated microbial community structures are affected by abiotic and host factors, and increased attention is given to the role of the microbiome in interactions such as pathogen inhibition. However, little is known about how these factors act on the microbial community, and especially what role microbe–microbe interaction dynamics play. We have begun to address this knowledge gap for phyllosphere microbiomes of plants by simultaneously studying three major groups of Arabidopsis thaliana symbionts (bacteria, fungi and oomycetes) using a systems biology approach. We evaluated multiple potential factors of microbial community control: we sampled various wild A. thaliana populations at different times, performed field plantings with different host genotypes, and implemented successive host colonization experiments under lab conditions where abiotic factors, host genotype, and pathogen colonization was manipulated. Our results indicate that both abiotic factors and host genotype interact to affect plant colonization by all three groups of microbes. Considering microbe–microbe interactions, however, uncovered a network of interkingdom interactions with significant contributions to community structure. As in other scale-free networks, a small number of taxa, which we call microbial “hubs,” are strongly interconnected and have a severe effect on communities. By documenting these microbe–microbe interactions, we uncover an important mechanism explaining how abiotic factors and host genotypic signatures control microbial communities. In short, they act directly on “hub” microbes, which, via microbe–microbe interactions, transmit the effects to the microbial community. We analyzed two “hub” microbes (the

  8. Role of Ca{sup ++}/calmodulin in the regulation of microtubules in higher plants. Progress report, FY 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Cyr, R.

    1992-12-31

    The cytoskeleton including its microtubule (Mt) component participates in processes that directly affect growth and development in higher plants. Normal cytoskeletal function requires the precise and orderly arrangement of Mts into several cell cycle and developmentally specific arrays. The cortical array somehow directs the deposition of cellulose. Little molecular information is available regarding the formation of these arrays or the cellular signals to which they respond. Experimental data described here suggests that plant cells use calcium, in the form of a Ca{sup ++}/calmodulin complex, to affect the dynamics of Mts within the cortical array. Owing to the importance of Ca{sup ++} as a regulatory ion in higher plants we are probing for a putative Ca{sup ++}/Mt transduction pathway which may serve to integrate Mt activities within the growing and developing plant cell. We are using a lysed cell model in conjunction with immunocytochemical and biochemical methodologies to dissect how Ca{sup ++}/calmodulin interacts with Mts to affect their function.

  9. 14C and 13C characteristics of higher plant biomarkers in Washington margin surface sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, Xiaojuan; Benitez-Nelson, Bryan C.; Montluçon, Daniel B.; Prahl, Fredrick G.; McNichol, Ann P.; Xu, Li; Repeta, Daniel J.; Eglinton, Timothy I.

    2013-03-01

    Plant wax lipids and lignin phenols are the two most common classes of molecular markers that are used to trace vascular plant-derived OM in the marine environment. However, their 13C and 14C compositions have not been directly compared, which can be used to constrain the flux and attenuation of terrestrial carbon in marine environment. In this study, we describe a revised method of isolating individual lignin phenols from complex sedimentary matrices for 14C analysis using high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) and compare this approach to a method utilizing preparative capillary gas chromatography (PCGC). We then examine in detail the 13C and 14C compositions of plant wax lipids and lignin phenols in sediments from the inner and mid shelf of the Washington margin that are influenced by discharge of the Columbia River. Plant wax lipids (including n-alkanes, n-alkanoic (fatty) acids, n-alkanols, and n-aldehydes) displayed significant variability in both δ13C (-28.3‰ to -37.5‰) and Δ14C values (-204‰ to +2‰), suggesting varied inputs and/or continental storage and transport histories. In contrast, lignin phenols exhibited similar δ13C values (between -30‰ and -34‰) and a relatively narrow range of Δ14C values (-45‰ to -150‰; HPLC-based measurement) that were similar to, or younger than, bulk OM (-195‰ to -137‰). Moreover, lignin phenol 14C age correlated with the degradation characteristics of this terrestrial biopolymer in that vanillyl phenols were on average ˜500 years older than syringyl and cinnamyl phenols that degrade faster in soils and sediments. The isotopic characteristics, abundance, and distribution of lignin phenols in sediments suggest that they serve as promising tracers of recently biosynthesized terrestrial OM during supply to, and dispersal within the marine environment. Lignin phenol 14C measurements may also provide useful constraints on the vascular plant end member in isotopic mixing models for carbon source

  10. A link between host plant adaptation and pesticide resistance in the polyphagous spider mite Tetranychus urticae.

    PubMed

    Dermauw, Wannes; Wybouw, Nicky; Rombauts, Stephane; Menten, Björn; Vontas, John; Grbic, Miodrag; Clark, Richard M; Feyereisen, René; Van Leeuwen, Thomas

    2013-01-08

    Plants produce a wide range of allelochemicals to defend against herbivore attack, and generalist herbivores have evolved mechanisms to avoid, sequester, or detoxify a broad spectrum of natural defense compounds. Successful arthropod pests have also developed resistance to diverse classes of pesticides and this adaptation is of critical importance to agriculture. To test whether mechanisms to overcome plant defenses predispose the development of pesticide resistance, we examined adaptation of the generalist two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae, to host plant transfer and pesticides. T. urticae is an extreme polyphagous pest with more than 1,100 documented hosts and has an extraordinary ability to develop pesticide resistance. When mites from a pesticide-susceptible strain propagated on bean were adapted to a challenging host (tomato), transcriptional responses increased over time with ~7.5% of genes differentially expressed after five generations. Whereas many genes with altered expression belonged to known detoxification families (like P450 monooxygenases), new gene families not previously associated with detoxification in other herbivores showed a striking response, including ring-splitting dioxygenase genes acquired by horizontal gene transfer. Strikingly, transcriptional profiles of tomato-adapted mites resembled those of multipesticide-resistant strains, and adaptation to tomato decreased the susceptibility to unrelated pesticide classes. Our findings suggest key roles for both an expanded environmental response gene repertoire and transcriptional regulation in the life history of generalist herbivores. They also support a model whereby selection for the ability to mount a broad response to the diverse defense chemistry of plants predisposes the evolution of pesticide resistance in generalists.

  11. Engineering sciences design. Design and implementation of components for a bioregenerative system for growing higher order plants in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nevill, Gale E., Jr.

    1989-01-01

    The primary goal was to address specific needs in the design of an integrated system to grow higher plants in space. With the needs defined, the emphasis was placed on the design and fabrication of devices to meet these needs. Specific attention was placed on a hand-held harvester, a nutrient concentration sensor, an air-water separator, and a closed-loop biological system simulation.

  12. Environmental metabolomics links genotype to phenotype and predicts genotype abundance in wild plant populations.

    PubMed

    Field, Katie J; Lake, Janice A

    2011-08-01

    'The Holy Grail' of plant ecology is to uncover rules that associate species and traits with environmental constraints, community composition and subsequent ecosystem functioning. These aims have been crystallized in recent years within the context of global climate change and environmental pollution, increasing the urgency of the need to predict how vegetation will respond across spatial scales. We investigated whether genetic diversity is associated with the way in which phenotypic plasticity within plant populations is realized and whether this is related to genotype abundance. We used environmental metabolomics to demonstrate biochemical variation between co-occurring genotypes of Carex caryophyllea L. A novel combined metabolomic/functional trait analysis was used to test the functionality of this variation in governing plasticity to variation in edaphic conditions, with particular reference to metabolic pathways that play important roles in growth-related traits. We show that genetic diversity within a wild C. caryophyllea population relates to differences in metabolic composition and functional traits in response to soil nutrient variation, influencing genotype abundance within a community. Our findings highlight the vital role genetic diversity plays within a population in facilitating plant phenotypic plasticity and the potential usefulness of environmental metabolomics to future ecological studies.

  13. Linking plant communities on land and at sea: The effects of Posidonia oceanica wrack on the structure of dune vegetation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Del Vecchio, Silvia; Jucker, Tommaso; Carboni, Marta; Acosta, Alicia T. R.

    2017-01-01

    Although terrestrial and marine ecosystems are often perceived as clearly distinct, in coastal areas biological communities on land and at sea are in fact intimately linked. One way in which terrestrial and marine systems interact is through the accumulation of seagrass wrack on beaches, which plays an important role as a nutrient input in coastal dune food webs. Here we test whether accumulated beach-cast wrack also influences the structure and diversity of coastal dune plant communities. Relying on a database of 572 vegetation surveys distributed across the island of Sardinia, we used mixed-effects models to compare the vegetation cover and species richness of plant communities exposed to different amounts of Posidonia oceanica beach-cast wrack. We found that beaches which receive high amounts of P. oceanica wrack have considerably greater vegetation cover (10% on average) than those with fewer deposits. The positive relationship between beach-cast wrack and vegetation cover was especially strong in nearshore plant communities, becoming progressively weaker along the habitat zonation. A similar pattern was found for species richness: beaches with high levels of accumulated wrack had more diverse drift line and foredune plant communities, while habitats further away from the shoreline were unaffected. Our study is the first to present evidence suggesting that activities which reduce wrack accumulation on beaches - either through direct removal of deposits or by causing P. oceanica seabeds to decline - can have effects on both the structure and diversity of coastal dune plant communities. Effective management of Mediterranean coastal dune ecosystems will require developing clear strategies for the removal and relocation of accumulated beach-cast wrack.

  14. Terrestrial-marine teleconnections in the Devonian: links between the evolution of land plants, weathering processes, and marine anoxic events

    PubMed Central

    Algeo, T. J.

    1998-01-01

    The Devonian Period was characterized by major changes in both the terrestrial biosphere, e.g. the evolution of trees and seed plants and the appearance of multi-storied forests, and in the marine biosphere, e.g. an extended biotic crisis that decimated tropical marine benthos, especially the stromatoporoid-tabulate coral reef community. Teleconnections between these terrestrial and marine events are poorly understood, but a key may lie in the role of soils as a geochemical interface between the lithosphere and atmosphere/hydrosphere, and the role of land plants in mediating weathering processes at this interface. The effectiveness of terrestrial floras in weathering was significantly enhanced as a consequence of increases in the size and geographic extent of vascular land plants during the Devonian. In this regard, the most important palaeobotanical innovations were (1) arborescence (tree stature), which increased maximum depths of root penetration and rhizoturbation, and (2) the seed habit, which freed land plants from reproductive dependence on moist lowland habitats and allowed colonization of drier upland and primary successional areas. These developments resulted in a transient intensification of pedogenesis (soil formation) and to large increases in the thickness and areal extent of soils. Enhanced chemical weathering may have led to increased riverine nutrient fluxes that promoted development of eutrophic conditions in epicontinental seaways, resulting in algal blooms, widespread bottomwater anoxia, and high sedimentary organic carbon fluxes. Long-term effects included drawdown of atmospheric pCO2 and global cooling, leading to a brief Late Devonian glaciation, which set the stage for icehouse conditions during the Permo-Carboniferous. This model provides a framework for understanding links between early land plant evolution and coeval marine anoxic and biotic events, but further testing of Devonian terrestrial-marine teleconnections is needed.

  15. Mimicking the hierarchical functions of dentin collagen cross-links with plant derived phenols and phenolic acids

    PubMed Central

    Vidal, Cristina M. P.; Leme, Ariene A.; Aguiar, Thaiane R.; Phansalkar, Rasika; Nam, Joo-Won; Bisson, Jonathan; McAlpine, James B.; Chen, Shao-Nong; Pauli, Guido F.; Bedran-Russo, Ana

    2015-01-01

    Proanthocyanidins (PACs) are secondary plant metabolites that mediate non-enzymatic collagen cross-linking and enhance the properties of collagen based tissue, such as dentin. The extent and nature of cross-linking is influenced by the composition and specific chemical structure of the bioactive compounds present in certain PAC-rich extracts. This study investigated the effect of the molecular weight and stereochemistry of polyphenol compounds on two important properties of dentin, biomechanics and biostability. For that, purified phenols, a phenolic acid and some of its derivatives were selected: PACs dimers (A1, A2, B1 and B2) and a trimer (C1), gallic acid (Ga), its esters methyl gallate (MGa) and propyl gallate (PGa), and a pentagalloyl ester of glucose (PGG). Synergism was assessed by combination of the most active PAC and gallic acid derivative. Mechanical properties of dentin organic matrix were determined by the modulus of elasticity obtained in a flexural test. Biostability was evaluated by resistance to collagenase degradation. PACs significantly enhanced dentin mechanical properties and decreased collagen digestion. Among the gallic acid derivatives, only PGG had a significant enhancing effect. The lack of observed C1:PGG synergy indicates that both compounds have similar mechanisms of interaction with the dentin matrix. These findings reveal that the molecular weight of polyphenols have a determinant effect on their interaction with type I collagen and modulate the mechanism of cross-linking at the molecular, inter-molecular, and inter-micro-fibrillar levels. PMID:25379878

  16. Linking river flow regimes to riparian plant guilds: a community-wide modeling approach.

    PubMed

    Lytle, David A; Merritt, David M; Tonkin, Jonathan D; Olden, Julian D; Reynolds, Lindsay V

    2017-03-06

    Modeling riparian plant dynamics along rivers is complicated by the fact that plants have different edaphic and hydrologic requirements at different life-stages. With intensifying human demands for water and continued human alteration of rivers, there is a growing need for predicting responses of vegetation to flow alteration, including responses related to climate change and river flow management. We developed a coupled structured population model that coombines stage-specific responses of plant guilds with specific attributes of river hydrologic regime. The model uses information on the vital rates of guilds as they relate to different hydrologic conditions (flood, drought, and baseflow), but deliberately omits biotic interactions from the structure ("interaction neutral"). Our intent was to: 1) consolidate key vital rates concerning plant population dynamics and to incorporate these data into a quantitative framework, 2) determine whether complex plant stand dynamics, including biotic interactions, can be predicted from basic vital rates and river hydrology, and 3) project how altered flow regimes might affect riparian communities. We illustrated the approach using five flow-response guilds that encompass much of the river floodplain community: hydroriparian tree, xeroriparian shrub, hydroriparian shrub, mesoriparian meadow, and desert shrub. We also developed novel network-based tools for predicting community-wide effects of climate-driven shifts and deliberately altered flow regimes. The model recovered known patterns of hydroriparian tree vs. xeroriparian shrub dominance, including the relative proportion of these two guilds as a function of river flow modification. By simulating flow alteration scenarios ranging from increased drought to shifts in flood timing, the model predicted that mature hydroriparian forest should be most abundant near the observed natural flow regime. Multiguild sensitivity analysis identified substantial network connectivity (many

  17. Elevated levels of adaption in Helicobacter pylori genomes from Japan; a link to higher incidences of gastric cancer?

    PubMed Central

    Soto-Girón, Maria Juliana; Ospina, Oscar E.; Massey, Steven Edward

    2015-01-01

    Helicobacter pylori is a bacterium that lives in the human stomach and is a major risk factor for gastric cancer and ulcers. H.pylori is host dependent and has been carried with human populations around the world after their departure from Africa. We wished to investigate how H.pylori has coevolved with its host during that time, focusing on strains from Japanese and European populations, given that gastric cancer incidence is high in Japanese populations, while low in European. A positive selection analysis of eight H.pylori genomes was conducted, using maximum likelihood based pairwise comparisons in order to maximize the number of strain-specific genes included in the study. Using the genic Ka/Ks ratio, comparisons of four Japanese H.pylori genomes suggests 25–34 genes under positive selection, while four European H.pylori genomes suggests 16–21 genes; few of the genes identified were in common between lineages. Of the identified genes which were annotated, 38% possessed homologs associated with pathogenicity and / or host adaptation, consistent with their involvement in a coevolutionary ‘arms race’ with the host. Given the efficacy of identifying host interaction factors de novo, in the absence of functionally annotated homologs our evolutionary approach may have value in identifying novel genes which H.pylori employs to interact with the human gut environment. In addition, the larger number of genes inferred as being under positive selection in Japanese strains compared to European implies a stronger overall adaptive pressure, potentially resulting from an elevated immune response which may be linked to increased inflammation, an initial stage in the development of gastric cancer. PMID:25788149

  18. Preparation of starch and other carbon fractions from higher plant leaves for stable carbon isotope analysis.

    PubMed

    Wanek, W; Heintel, S; Richter, A

    2001-01-01

    The measurement of the carbon isotope composition of starch and cellulose still relies on chemical isolation of these water-insoluble plant constituents and subsequent elemental analysis by isotope ratio mass spectrometry (EA/IRMS) of the purified fractions, while delta(13)C values of low-molecular-weight organic compounds are now routinely measured by gas chromatography/combustion/isotope ratio mass spectrometry (GC/C/IRMS). Here we report a simple and reliable method for processing milligram quantities of dried plant material for the analysis of the carbon isotope composition of lipids, soluble sugars, starch and cellulose from the same sample. We evaluated three different starch preparation methods, namely (1) enzymatic hydrolysis by alpha-amylase, (2) solubilization by dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) followed by precipitation with ethanol, and (3) partial hydrolysis by HCl followed by precipitation of the resulting dextrins by ethanol. Starch recovery for three commercially available native starches (from potato, rice and wheat) varied from 48 to 81% for the techniques based on precipitation, whereas the enzymatic technique exhibited yields between 99 and 105%. In addition, the DMSO and HCl techniques introduced a significant (13)C fractionation of up to 1.9 per thousand, while the carbon isotope composition of native starches analyzed after enzymatic digestion did not show any significant difference from that of untreated samples. The enzymatic starch preparation method was then incorporated into a protocol for determination of delta(13)C signatures of lipids, soluble carbohydrates, starch and crude cellulose. The procedure is based on methanol/chloroform/water extraction of dried and ground leaf material. After recovery of the chloroform phase (lipid fraction), the methanol/water phase was deionized by ion exchange (soluble carbohydrate fraction) and the pellet treated with heat-stable alpha-amylase (starch fraction). The remaining insoluble material was subjected

  19. Links between the detritivore and the herbivore system: effects of earthworms and Collembola on plant growth and aphid development.

    PubMed

    Scheu, Stefan; Theenhaus, Anne; Jones, T Hefin

    1999-06-01

    presence of Collembola also influenced earthworm body mass during the experiment. In general it declined, but in the presence of Collembola loss of body mass of A. caliginosa was more pronounced. We conclude that inhibiting effects between Collembola and earthworms resulted from the use of a common resource, litter material rich in nitrogen. This is supported by the higher C/N ratio of the litter material in the presence of earthworms and Collembola by the end of the experiment. Effects of soil invertebrates like Collembola and earthworms on plant performance and aphid development are assumed to be modified by complex direct and indirect interactions among soil animal groups.

  20. Size, Shape, and Arrangement of Cellulose Microfibril in Higher Plant Cell Walls

    SciTech Connect

    Ding, S. Y.

    2013-01-01

    Plant cell walls from maize (Zea mays L.) are imaged using atomic force microscopy (AFM) at the sub-nanometer resolution. We found that the size and shape of fundamental cellulose elementary fibril (CEF) is essentially identical in different cell wall types, i.e., primary wall (PW), parenchyma secondary wall (pSW), and sclerenchyma secondary wall (sSW), which is consistent with previously proposed 36-chain model (Ding et al., 2006, J. Agric. Food Chem.). The arrangement of individual CEFs in these wall types exhibits two orientations. In PW, CEFs are horizontally associated through their hydrophilic faces, and the planar faces are exposed, forming ribbon-like macrofibrils. In pSW and sSW, CEFs are vertically oriented, forming layers, in which hemicelluloses are interacted with the hydrophobic faces of the CEF and serve as spacers between CEFs. Lignification occurs between CEF-hemicelluloses layers in secondary walls. Furthermore, we demonstrated quantitative analysis of plant cell wall accessibility to and digestibility by different cellulase systems at real-time using chemical imaging (e.g., stimulated Raman scattering) and fluorescence microscopy of labeled cellulases (Ding et al., 2012, Science, in press).

  1. Energetic metabolism response in algae and higher plant species from simulation experiments with the clinostat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasilenko, A.; Popova, A. F.

    Adenylate state is acknowledged to be among the most convenient approaches in the study of physiological changes in plant cells under simulation of altered gravity condition with the clinostat. Adenylate levels and the ATP/ADP ratio in cytoplasmic and mitochondrial extracts of cultivated cells of Haplopappus gracilis and algae cells of Chlorella vulgaris under initial stages of the fast-rotating and slow-rotating clinorotation, as well as the long-term clinorotation, have been investigated. For analysis of ATP and ADP levels in the plant cells under the clinorotation, we applied a high-sensitive bioluminescence method using the luciferase and piruvate kinase enzyme systems. It has been shown that the adenylate ratio is already increased during at the start of clinorotation with the different speed of rotation in the biological material tested. The considerable changes in mitochondrial ultrastructure of Chlorella cells, as well as the rising ATP level and dropping of the ATP/ADP ratio appear after long-duration clinorotation if compared to control material. It is probably connected with the distinctions in ATP-synthetase functioning in mitochondria of the cells under the clinorotation conditions.

  2. Modeling photosynthesis of discontinuous plant canopies by linking the Geometric Optical Radiative Transfer model with biochemical processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xin, Q.; Gong, P.; Li, W.

    2015-06-01

    Modeling vegetation photosynthesis is essential for understanding carbon exchanges between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere. The radiative transfer process within plant canopies is one of the key drivers that regulate canopy photosynthesis. Most vegetation cover consists of discrete plant crowns, of which the physical observation departs from the underlying assumption of a homogenous and uniform medium in classic radiative transfer theory. Here we advance the Geometric Optical Radiative Transfer (GORT) model to simulate photosynthesis activities for discontinuous plant canopies. We separate radiation absorption into two components that are absorbed by sunlit and shaded leaves, and derive analytical solutions by integrating over the canopy layer. To model leaf-level and canopy-level photosynthesis, leaf light absorption is then linked to the biochemical process of gas diffusion through leaf stomata. The canopy gap probability derived from GORT differs from classic radiative transfer theory, especially when the leaf area index is high, due to leaf clumping effects. Tree characteristics such as tree density, crown shape, and canopy length affect leaf clumping and regulate radiation interception. Modeled gross primary production (GPP) for two deciduous forest stands could explain more than 80% of the variance of flux tower measurements at both near hourly and daily timescales. We demonstrate that ambient CO2 concentrations influence daytime vegetation photosynthesis, which needs to be considered in biogeochemical models. The proposed model is complementary to classic radiative transfer theory and shows promise in modeling the radiative transfer process and photosynthetic activities over discontinuous forest canopies.

  3. Linking Belowground Plant Traits With Ecosystem Processes: A Multi-Biome Perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iversen, C. M.; Norby, R. J.; Childs, J.; McCormack, M. L.; Walker, A. P.; Hanson, P. J.; Warren, J.; Sloan, V. L.; Sullivan, P. F.; Wullschleger, S.; Powell, A. S.

    2015-12-01

    Fine plant roots are short-lived, narrow-diameter roots that play an important role in ecosystem carbon, water, and nutrient cycling in biomes ranging from the tundra to the tropics. Root ecologists make measurements at a millimeter scale to answer a question with global implications: In response to a changing climate, how do fine roots modulate the exchange of carbon between soils and the atmosphere and how will this response affect our future climate? In a Free-Air CO2 Enrichment experiment in Oak Ridge, TN, elevated [CO2] caused fine roots to dive deeper into the soil profile in search of limiting nitrogen, which led to increased soil C storage in deep soils. In contrast, the fine roots of trees and shrubs in an ombrotrophic bog are constrained to nutrient-poor, oxic soils above the average summer water table depth, though this may change with warmer, drier conditions. Tundra plant species are similarly constrained to surface organic soils by permafrost or waterlogged soils, but have many adaptations that alter ecosystem C fluxes, including aerenchyma that oxygenate the rhizosphere but also allow direct methane flux to the atmosphere. FRED, a global root trait database, will allow terrestrial biosphere models to represent the complexity of root traits across the globe, informing both model representation of ecosystem C and nutrient fluxes, but also the gaps where measurements are needed on plant-soil interactions (for example, in the tropical biome). While the complexity of mm-scale measurements may never have a place in large-scale global models, close collaboration between empiricists and modelers can help to guide the scaling of important, yet small-scale, processes to quantify their important roles in larger-scale ecosystem fluxes.

  4. Linking Predation Risk, Herbivore Physiological Stress and Microbial Decomposition of Plant Litter

    PubMed Central

    Schmitz, Oswald J.; Bradford, Mark A.; Strickland, Michael S.; Hawlena, Dror

    2013-01-01

    The quantity and quality of detritus entering the soil determines the rate of decomposition by microbial communities as well as recycle rates of nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) sequestration1,2. Plant litter comprises the majority of detritus3, and so it is assumed that decomposition is only marginally influenced by biomass inputs from animals such as herbivores and carnivores4,5. However, carnivores may influence microbial decomposition of plant litter via a chain of interactions in which predation risk alters the physiology of their herbivore prey that in turn alters soil microbial functioning when the herbivore carcasses are decomposed6. A physiological stress response by herbivores to the risk of predation can change the C:N elemental composition of herbivore biomass7,8,9 because stress from predation risk increases herbivore basal energy demands that in nutrient-limited systems forces herbivores to shift their consumption from N-rich resources to support growth and reproduction to C-rich carbohydrate resources to support heightened metabolism6. Herbivores have limited ability to store excess nutrients, so stressed herbivores excrete N as they increase carbohydrate-C consumption7. Ultimately, prey stressed by predation risk increase their body C:N ratio7,10, making them poorer quality resources for the soil microbial pool likely due to lower availability of labile N for microbial enzyme production6. Thus, decomposition of carcasses of stressed herbivores has a priming effect on the functioning of microbial communities that decreases subsequent ability to of microbes to decompose plant litter6,10,11. We present the methodology to evaluate linkages between predation risk and litter decomposition by soil microbes. We describe how to: induce stress in herbivores from predation risk; measure those stress responses, and measure the consequences on microbial decomposition. We use insights from a model grassland ecosystem comprising the hunting spider predator (Pisuarina

  5. Protein O-linked glycosylation in the plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum.

    PubMed

    Elhenawy, Wael; Scott, Nichollas E; Tondo, M Laura; Orellano, Elena G; Foster, Leonard J; Feldman, Mario F

    2016-03-01

    Ralstonia solanacearum is one of the most lethal phytopathogens in the world. Due to its broad host range, it can cause wilting disease in many plant species of economic interest. In this work, we identified the O-oligosaccharyltransferase (O-OTase) responsible for protein O-glycosylation in R. solanacearum. An analysis of the glycoproteome revealed that 20 proteins, including type IV pilins are substrates of this general glycosylation system. Although multiple glycan forms were identified, the majority of the glycopeptides were modified with a pentasaccharide composed of HexNAc-(Pen)-dHex(3), similar to the O antigen subunit present in the lipopolysaccharide of multiple R. solanacearum strains. Disruption of the O-OTase led to the total loss of protein glycosylation, together with a defect in biofilm formation and reduced pathogenicity towards tomato plants. Comparative proteomic analysis revealed that the loss of glycosylation is not associated with widespread proteome changes. Only the levels of a single glycoprotein, the type IV pilin, were diminished in the absence of glycosylation. In parallel, disruption of glycosylation triggered an increase in the levels of a surface lectin homologous to Pseudomonas PA-IIL. These results reveal the important role of glycosylation in the pathogenesis of R. solanacearum.

  6. The Role of Silicon in Higher Plants under Salinity and Drought Stress

    PubMed Central

    Coskun, Devrim; Britto, Dev T.; Huynh, Wayne Q.; Kronzucker, Herbert J.

    2016-01-01

    Although deemed a “non-essential” mineral nutrient, silicon (Si) is clearly beneficial to plant growth and development, particularly under stress conditions, including salinity and drought. Here, we review recent research on the physiological, biochemical, and molecular mechanisms underlying Si-induced alleviation of osmotic and ionic stresses associated with salinity and drought. We distinguish between changes observed in the apoplast (i.e., suberization, lignification, and silicification of the extracellular matrix; transpirational bypass flow of solutes and water), and those of the symplast (i.e., transmembrane transport of solutes and water; gene expression; oxidative stress; metabolism), and discuss these features in the context of Si biogeochemistry and bioavailability in agricultural soils, evaluating the prospect of using Si fertilization to increase crop yield and stress tolerance under salinity and drought conditions. PMID:27486474

  7. Chlorophyll‐Derived Yellow Phyllobilins of Higher Plants as Medium‐Responsive Chiral Photoswitches

    PubMed Central

    Li, Chengjie; Wurst, Klaus; Jockusch, Steffen; Gruber, Karl; Podewitz, Maren; Liedl, Klaus R.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The fall colors are signs of chlorophyll breakdown, the biological process in plants that generates phyllobilins. Most of the abundant natural phyllobilins are colorless, but yellow phyllobilins (phylloxanthobilins) also occur in fall leaves. As shown here, phylloxanthobilins are unique four‐stage photoswitches. Which switching mode is turned on is controlled by the molecular environment. In polar media, phylloxanthobilins are monomeric and undergo photoreversible Z/E isomerization, similar to that observed for bilirubin. Unlike bilirubin, however, the phylloxanthobilin Z isomers photodimerize in apolar solvents by regio‐ and stereospecific thermoreversible [2+2] cycloadditions from self‐assembled hydrogen‐bonded dimers. X‐ray analysis revealed the first stereostructure of a phylloxanthobilin and its hydrogen‐bonded self‐templating architecture, helping to rationalize its exceptional photoswitch features. The chemical behavior of phylloxanthobilins will play a seminal role in identifying biological roles of phyllobilins. PMID:27891749

  8. [Proteolytic enzymes and trypsin inhibitors of higher plants under stress conditions].

    PubMed

    Domash, V I; Sharpio, T P; Zabreĭko, S A; Sosnovskaia, T F

    2008-01-01

    The response of the components of a protease-inhibitor system of legume and cereal crops to stress factors was studied. It was found that salinization, heavy metal ions, and phytopathogenic flora inhibit the activity of neutral, acidic, and alkaline proteases at early stages of seed germination, the degree of the inhibition of the endoprotease activity being dependent on the index of tolerance of legume and cereal crops. It was shown that, in response to unfavorable conditions, accumulation of trypsin inhibitors occurs, which is accompanied by the appearance of new protein components, as indicated by electrophoresis. The results confirm the presumption that serine protease inhibitors are involved in the response of plants to stress factors.

  9. Genetic engineering of corn and other higher plants: Progress report for the period August 1, 1984--July 31, 1985

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, R.W.

    1985-01-01

    We have developed a number of potential vectors for maize transformation. All vectors have used the bacterial CAT gene connected between a maize promoter and a maize polyadenylation site. The product of this gene is readily assayed in maize tissue and may provide a fast screen for young seedlings. We have found that chloramphenicol reduces the growth of young seedlings and causes bleaching of the first leaves, but does not kill the plant. A mosaic with a transforming DNA may allow better growth. We remove a portion of the root to assay for CAT activity. CAT activity should be detected even if only a small number of cells contain DNA. If activity is detected in these young plants, the plant will be potted, and F1 and F2 plants will be generated. These will then be screened for stable inheritance of the transforming DNA. The higher the expression of the CAT gene in these few cells, the more reliable will be the assay. Accordingly, we have connected the CAT gene to one of the strongest maize promoters active in the young seedling. This promoter was identified in a large scale screening operation that identified the single copy gene that expressed the most abundant polyA RNA. The promoter and coding regions have been sequenced. The product of this gene has not yet been determined.

  10. Inclusion of human mineralized exometabolites and fish wastes as a source of higher plant mineral nutrition in BTLSS mass exchange

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tikhomirova, Natalia; Tikhomirov, Alexander A.; Ushakova, Sofya; Anischenko, Olesya; Trifonov, Sergey V.

    Human exometabolites inclusion into an intrasystem mass exchange will allow increasing of a closure level of a biological-technical life support system (BTLSS). Previously at the IBP SB RAS it was shown that human mineralized exometabolites could be incorporated in the BTLSS mass exchange as a mineral nutrition source for higher plants. However, it is not known how that combined use of human mineralized exometabolites and fish wastes in the capacity of nutrient medium, being a part of the BTLSS consumer wastes, will affect the plant productivity. Several wheat vegetations were grown in an uneven-aged conveyor on a neutral substrate. A mixture of human mineralized exometabolites and fish wastes was used as a nutrient solution in the experiment treatment and human mineralized exometabolites were used in the control. Consequently, a high wheat yield in the experiment treatment practically equal to the control yield was obtained. Thus, mineralized fish wastes can be an additional source of macro-and micronutrients for plants, and use of such wastes for the plant mineral nutrition allows increasing of BTLSS closure level.

  11. Biological effects of weightlessness and clinostatic conditions registered in cells of root meristem and cap of higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sytnik, K. M.; Kordyum, E. L.; Belyavskaya, N. A.; Nedukha, E. M.; Tarasenko, V. A.

    Research in cellular reproduction, differentiation and vital activity, i.e. processes underlying the development and functioning of organisms, plants included, is essential for solving fundamental and applied problems of space biology. Detailed anatomical analysis of roots of higher plants grown on board the Salyut 6 orbital research station show that under conditions of weightlessness for defined duration mitosis, cytokinesis and tissue differentiation in plant vegetative organs occur essentially normally. At the same time, certain rearrangements in the structural organization of cellular organelles - mainly the plastid apparatus, mitochondria, Golgi apparatus and nucleus - are established in the root meristem and cap of the experimental plants. This is evidence for considerable changes in cellular metabolism. The structural changes in the subcellular level arising under spaceflight conditions are partially absent in clinostat experiments designed to simulate weightlessness. Various clinostatic conditions have different influences on the cell structural and functional organization than does space flight. It is suggested that alterations of cellular metabolism under weightlessness and clinostatic conditions occur within existing genetic programs.

  12. Association mapping for phenology and plant architecture in maize shows higher power for developmental traits compared with growth influenced traits.

    PubMed

    Bouchet, S; Bertin, P; Presterl, T; Jamin, P; Coubriche, D; Gouesnard, B; Laborde, J; Charcosset, A

    2017-03-01

    Plant architecture, phenology and yield components of cultivated plants have repeatedly been shaped by selection to meet human needs and adaptation to different environments. Here we assessed the genetic architecture of 24 correlated maize traits that interact during plant cycle. Overall, 336 lines were phenotyped in a network of 9 trials and genotyped with 50K single-nucleotide polymorphisms. Phenology was the main factor of differentiation between genetic groups. Then yield components distinguished dents from lower yielding genetic groups. However, most of trait variation occurred within group and we observed similar overall and within group correlations, suggesting a major effect of pleiotropy and/or linkage. We found 34 quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for individual traits and six for trait combinations corresponding to PCA coordinates. Among them, only five were pleiotropic. We found a cluster of QTLs in a 5 Mb region around Tb1 associated with tiller number, ear row number and the first PCA axis, the latter being positively correlated to flowering time and negatively correlated to yield. Kn1 and ZmNIP1 were candidate genes for tillering, ZCN8 for leaf number and Rubisco Activase 1 for kernel weight. Experimental repeatabilities, numbers of QTLs and proportion of explained variation were higher for traits related to plant development such as tillering, leaf number and flowering time, than for traits affected by growth such as yield components. This suggests a simpler genetic determinism with larger individual QTL effects for the first category.

  13. An empirical review: Characteristics of plant microsatellite markers that confer higher levels of genetic variation1

    PubMed Central

    Merritt, Benjamin J.; Culley, Theresa M.; Avanesyan, Alina; Stokes, Richard; Brzyski, Jessica

    2015-01-01

    During microsatellite marker development, researchers must choose from a pool of possible primer pairs to further test in their species of interest. In many cases, the goal is maximizing detectable levels of genetic variation. To guide researchers and determine which markers are associated with higher levels of genetic variation, we conducted a literature review based on 6782 genomic microsatellite markers published from 1997–2012. We examined relationships between heterozygosity (He or Ho) or allele number (A) with the following marker characteristics: repeat type, motif length, motif region, repeat frequency, and microsatellite size. Variation across taxonomic groups was also analyzed. There were significant differences between imperfect and perfect repeat types in A and He. Dinucleotide motifs exhibited significantly higher A, He, and Ho than most other motifs. Repeat frequency and motif region were positively correlated with A, He, and Ho, but correlations with microsatellite size were minimal. Higher taxonomic groups were disproportionately represented in the literature and showed little consistency. In conclusion, researchers should carefully consider marker characteristics so they can be tailored to the desired application. If researchers aim to target high genetic variation, dinucleotide motif lengths with large repeat frequencies may be best. PMID:26312192

  14. Increased expression of X-linked genes in mammals is associated with a higher stability of transcripts and an increased ribosome density.

    PubMed

    Faucillion, Marie-Line; Larsson, Jan

    2015-03-18

    Mammalian sex chromosomes evolved from the degeneration of one homolog of a pair of ancestral autosomes, the proto-Y. This resulted in a gene dose imbalance that is believed to be restored (partially or fully) through upregulation of gene expression from the single active X-chromosome in both sexes by a dosage compensatory mechanism. We analyzed multiple genome-wide RNA stability data sets and found significantly longer average half-lives for X-chromosome transcripts than for autosomal transcripts in various human cell lines, both male and female, and in mice. Analysis of ribosome profiling data shows that ribosome density is higher on X-chromosome transcripts than on autosomal transcripts in both humans and mice, suggesting that the higher stability is causally linked to a higher translation rate. Our results and observations are in accordance with a dosage compensatory upregulation of expressed X-linked genes. We therefore propose that differential mRNA stability and translation rates of the autosomes and sex chromosomes contribute to an evolutionarily conserved dosage compensation mechanism in mammals.

  15. Link direction for link prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shang, Ke-ke; Small, Michael; Yan, Wei-sheng

    2017-03-01

    Almost all previous studies on link prediction have focused on using the properties of the network to predict the existence of links between pairs of nodes. Unfortunately, previous methods rarely consider the role of link direction for link prediction. In fact, many real-world complex networks are directed and ignoring the link direction will mean overlooking important information. In this study, we propose a phase-dynamic algorithm of the directed network nodes to analyse the role of link directions and demonstrate that the bi-directional links and the one-directional links have different roles in link prediction and network structure formation. From this, we propose new directional prediction methods and use six real networks to test our algorithms. In real networks, we find that compared to a pair of nodes which are connected by a one-directional link, a pair of nodes which are connected by a bi-directional link always have higher probabilities to connect to the common neighbours with only bi-directional links (or conversely by one-directional links). We suggest that, in the real networks, the bi-directional links will generally be more informative for link prediction and network structure formation. In addition, we propose a new directional randomized algorithm to demonstrate that the direction of the links plays a significant role in link prediction and network structure formation.

  16. Cross-chip probe matching tool: A web-based tool for linking microarray probes within and across plant species.

    PubMed

    Ghanekar, Ruchi; Srinivasasainagendra, Vinodh; Page, Grier P

    2008-01-01

    The CCPMT is a free, web-based tool that allows plant investigators to rapidly determine if a given gene is present across various microarray platforms, which, of a list of genes, is present on array(s), and which gene a probe or probe set queries and vice versa, and to compare and contrast the gene contents of arrays. The CCPMT also maps a probe or probe sets to a gene or genes within and across species, and permits the mapping of the entire content from one array to another. By using the CCPMT, investigators will have a better understanding of the contents of arrays, a better ability to link data between experiments, ability to conduct meta-analysis and combine datasets, and an increased ability to conduct data mining projects.

  17. Photoprotection and triplet energy transfer in higher plants: the role of electronic and nuclear fluctuations.

    PubMed

    Cupellini, Lorenzo; Jurinovich, Sandro; Prandi, Ingrid G; Caprasecca, Stefano; Mennucci, Benedetta

    2016-04-28

    Photosynthetic organisms employ several photoprotection strategies to avoid damage due to the excess energy in high light conditions. Among these, quenching of triplet chlorophylls by neighboring carotenoids (Cars) is fundamental in preventing the formation of singlet oxygen. Cars are able to accept the triplets from chlorophylls by triplet energy transfer (TET). We have here studied TET rates in CP29, a minor light-harvesting complex (LHC) of the Photosystem II in plants. A fully atomistic strategy combining classical molecular dynamics of the LHC in its natural environment with a hybrid time-dependent density functional theory/polarizable MM description of the TET is used. We find that the structural fluctuations of the pigment-protein complex can largely enhance the transfer rates with respect to those predicted using the crystal structure, reducing the triplet quenching times in the subnanosecond scale. These findings add a new perspective for the interpretation of the photoprotection function and its relation with structural motions of the LHC.

  18. Evidence for Two Catalytic Sites in the Functional Unit of H+-ATPase from Higher Plants.

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, G.; Berberian, G.; Beauge, L.

    1995-01-01

    We investigated the nature of the complex ATP activation kinetics of plant H+-ATPases. To this aim we analyzed that activation in three isolated isoforms (AHA1, AHA2, and AHA3) of H+-ATPase from Arabidopsis thaliana. The isoforms were obtained by heterologous expression in endoplasmic reticulum of yeast. ATP stimulation was always with low affinity (K0.5 between 500 and 1800 [mu]M). In addition, the curves were not Michaelian and displayed positive cooperativity. Detailed studies with AHA2 showed that (a) enzyme solubilized with lysophosphatidylcholine exhibited Michaelian behavior even in the presence of soybean lecithin liposomes free of enzyme, (b) solubilized enzyme incorporated into the same liposomes displayed two-site kinetics with negative cooperativity, and (c) enzyme partially digested with trypsin lost the C-terminal portion of the molecule. Under this condition the ATP activation kinetics was Michaelian or had a slight negative cooperativity and the K0.5ATP was reduced 3-fold. These data suggest that the functional unit of the H+-ATPase has two catalytic ATP sites with variable cooperativity and kinetics competence of the E(ATP) and E(ATP)2 complexes. Such variability is likely modulated by the association of the enzyme with membrane structures and by a regulatory domain in the C terminus of the enzyme molecule. PMID:12228512

  19. Herbicides do not ensure for higher wheat yield, but eliminate rare plant species

    PubMed Central

    Gaba, Sabrina; Gabriel, Edith; Chadœuf, Joël; Bonneu, Florent; Bretagnolle, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    Weed control is generally considered to be essential for crop production and herbicides have become the main method used for weed control in developed countries. However, concerns about harmful environmental consequences have led to strong pressure on farmers to reduce the use of herbicides. As food demand is forecast to increase by 50% over the next century, an in-depth quantitative analysis of crop yields, weeds and herbicides is required to balance economic and environmental issues. This study analysed the relationship between weeds, herbicides and winter wheat yields using data from 150 winter wheat fields in western France. A Bayesian hierarchical model was built to take account of farmers’ behaviour, including implicitly their perception of weeds and weed control practices, on the effectiveness of treatment. No relationship was detected between crop yields and herbicide use. Herbicides were found to be more effective at controlling rare plant species than abundant weed species. These results suggest that reducing the use of herbicides by up to 50% could maintain crop production, a result confirmed by previous studies, while encouraging weed biodiversity. Food security and biodiversity conservation may, therefore, be achieved simultaneously in intensive agriculture simply by reducing the use of herbicides. PMID:27453451

  20. Transport of phosphocholine in higher plant cells: sup 31 P nuclear magnetic resonance studies

    SciTech Connect

    Gout, E.; Bligny, R.; Roby, C.; Douce, R. )

    1990-06-01

    Phosphocholine (PC) is an abundant primary form of organic phosphate that is transported in plant xylem sap. Addition of PC to the perfusate of compressed P{sub i}-starved sycamore cells monitored by {sup 31}P NMR spectroscopy resulted in an accumulation of PC and all the other phosphate esters in the cytoplasmic compartment. Addition of hemicholinium-3, an inhibitor of choline uptake, to the perfusate inhibited PC accumulation but not inorganic phosphate (P{sub i}). When the P{sub i}-starved cells were perfused with a medium containing either P{sub i} or PC, the resulting P{sub i} distribution in the cell was the same. Addition of choline instead of PC to the perfusate of compressed cells resulted in an accumulation of PC in the cytoplasmic compartment from choline kinase activity. In addition, PC phosphatase activity has been discovered associated with the cell wall. These results indicate that PC was rapidly hydrolyzed outside the cell and that choline and P{sub i} entered the cytosolic compartment where choline kinase re-forms PC.

  1. Transport of phosphocholine in higher plant cells: 31P nuclear magnetic resonance studies.

    PubMed Central

    Gout, E; Bligny, R; Roby, C; Douce, R

    1990-01-01

    Phosphocholine (PC) is an abundant primary form of organic phosphate that is transported in plant xylem sap. Addition of PC to the perfusate of compressed Pi-starved sycamore cells monitored by 31P NMR spectroscopy resulted in an accumulation of PC and all the other phosphate esters in the cytoplasmic compartment. Addition of hemicholinium-3, an inhibitor of choline uptake, to the perfusate inhibited PC accumulation but not inorganic phosphate (Pi). When the Pi-starved cells were perfused with a medium containing either Pi or PC, the resulting Pi distribution in the cell was the same. Addition of choline instead of PC to the perfusate of compressed cells resulted in an accumulation of PC in the cytoplasmic compartment from choline kinase activity. In addition, PC phosphatase activity has been discovered associated with the cell wall. These results indicate that PC was rapidly hydrolyzed outside the cell and that choline and Pi entered the cytosolic compartment where choline kinase re-forms PC. PMID:11607080

  2. Distributed Modeling Reveals the Ecohydrological Dynamics Linked with Woody Plant Encroachment in the Sonoran Desert

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pierini, N. A.; Vivoni, E. R.; Anderson, C.; Saripalli, S.; Robles-Morua, A.

    2012-12-01

    Woody plant encroachment is an important issue facing semiarid ecosystems in the southwestern United States that is associated with grazing pressures, fire suppression, and the invasion of shrub species into historical grasslands. In this study, we present observational and distributed modeling activities conducted in two small rangeland watersheds of the Santa Rita Experimental Range, Arizona. This Sonoran Desert landscape is representative of the vegetation shift from grasslands to a woody savanna due to the encroachment of velvet mesquite (Prosopis velutina). The paired basins are similar in size and in close proximity, leading to equivalent meteorological and soil conditions. Nevertheless, they vary substantially in mesquite cover, with one basin having undergone a removal treatment several decades ago, while the other watershed represents the regional encroachment process. This distinction presents an excellent case study for analyzing the effects of mesquite encroachment on dryland ecohydrological dynamics. Observational datasets are obtained from a high-resolution environmental sensor network consisting of six rain gauges, twenty-one soil moisture and temperature profiles, five channel runoff flumes and an eddy covariance tower with a complete set of radiation, energy, carbon and water fluxes. In addition, high-resolution digital terrain models and image orthomosaics were obtained from a piloted aircraft with Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) measurements and an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) with a digital camera. These two remote sensing platforms allowed characterizing the topography, stream network and plant species distributions at a high resolution (<1 m) in both basins. Using the sensor network, we present comparative analyses of watershed rainfall-runoff transformation in the paired basins, illustrating the role that mesquite trees have in runoff generation at the two outlet flumes. We further explore the impact of mesquite trees on the soil

  3. Linking plant functional traits and forest carbon stocks in the Congo Basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kearsley, Elizabeth; Verbeeck, Hans; Hufkens, Koen; Lewis, Simon; Huygens, Dries; Beeckman, Hans; Steppe, Kathy; Boeckx, Pascal

    2013-04-01

    Accurate estimates of the amount of carbon stored in tropical forests represent crucial baseline data for recent climate change mitigation policies. Such data are needed to quantify possible emissions due to deforestation and forest degradation, and to evaluate the potential of these forests to act as carbon sinks. Currently, only rough estimates of the carbon stocks for Central African tropical forests are available due to a lack of field data, and little is known about the response of these stocks to climate change. We present the first ground-based carbon stock data for the central Congo Basin in Yangambi, D. R. Congo, based on data of 20 inventory plots of 1 ha covering different forest types. We found an average aboveground carbon stock of 163 ± 19 Mg C ha-1 for intact old-growth forest, which is significantly lower than the stocks recorded in the outer regions of the Congo Basin. Commonly studied drivers for variations of carbon stocks include climatic and edaphic factors, but detailed trait-based studies are lacking. We identified a significant difference in height-diameter relations across the Congo Basin as a driver for spatial differences in carbon stocks. The study of a more detailed interaction of the environment and the available tree species pool as drivers for differences in carbon storage could have large implications. The effect of the species pool on carbon storage can be large since species differ in their ability to sequester carbon, and the collective functional characteristics of plant communities could be a major driver of carbon accumulation. The use of a trait-based approach shows high potential for identifying and quantifying carbon stocks as an ecosystem service. We test for associations between functional trait values and carbon storage across multiple regrowth and old-growth forests types in the Yangambi study area, with soil properties and climate similar for all plots. A selection of traits associated with carbon dynamics is made

  4. Integrative analyses unveil speciation linked to host plant shift in Spialia butterflies.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Roldán, Juan L; Dapporto, Leonardo; Dincă, Vlad; Vicente, Juan C; Hornett, Emily A; Šíchová, Jindra; Lukhtanov, Vladimir A; Talavera, Gerard; Vila, Roger

    2016-09-01

    Discovering cryptic species in well-studied areas and taxonomic groups can have profound implications in understanding eco-evolutionary processes and in nature conservation because such groups often involve research models and act as flagship taxa for nature management. In this study, we use an array of techniques to study the butterflies in the Spialia sertorius species group (Lepidoptera, Hesperiidae). The integration of genetic, chemical, cytogenetic, morphological, ecological and microbiological data indicates that the sertorius species complex includes at least five species that differentiated during the last three million years. As a result, we propose the restitution of the species status for two taxa often treated as subspecies, Spialia ali (Oberthür, 1881) stat. rest. and Spialia therapne (Rambur, 1832) stat. rest., and describe a new cryptic species Spialia rosae Hernández-Roldán, Dapporto, Dincă, Vicente & Vila sp. nov. Spialia sertorius (Hoffmannsegg, 1804) and S. rosae are sympatric and synmorphic, but show constant differences in mitochondrial DNA, chemical profiles and ecology, suggesting that S. rosae represents a case of ecological speciation involving larval host plant and altitudinal shift, and apparently associated with Wolbachia infection. This study exemplifies how a multidisciplinary approach can reveal elusive cases of hidden diversity.

  5. Occurrence of Legionella in wastewater treatment plants linked to wastewater characteristics.

    PubMed

    Caicedo, C; Beutel, S; Scheper, T; Rosenwinkel, K H; Nogueira, R

    2016-08-01

    In recent years, the occurrence of Legionella in wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) has often been reported. However, until now there is limited knowledge about the factors that promote Legionella's growth in such systems. The aim of this study was to investigate the chemical wastewater parameters that might be correlated to the concentration of Legionella spp. in WWTP receiving industrial effluents. For this purpose, samples were collected at different processes in three WWTP. In 100 % of the samples taken from the activated sludge tanks Legionella spp. were detected at varying concentrations (4.8 to 5.6 log GU/mL) by the quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction method, but not by the culture method. Statistical analysis with various parameters yielded positive correlations of Legionella spp. concentration with particulate chemical oxygen demand, Kjeldahl nitrogen and protein concentration. Amino acids were quantified in wastewater and activated sludge samples at concentrations that may not support the growth of Legionella, suggesting that in activated sludge tanks this bacterium multiplied in protozoan hosts.

  6. Identification of a mechanism of photoprotective energy dissipation in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Ruban, Alexander V; Berera, Rudi; Ilioaia, Cristian; van Stokkum, Ivo H M; Kennis, John T M; Pascal, Andrew A; van Amerongen, Herbert; Robert, Bruno; Horton, Peter; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2007-11-22

    Under conditions of excess sunlight the efficient light-harvesting antenna found in the chloroplast membranes of plants is rapidly and reversibly switched into a photoprotected quenched state in which potentially harmful absorbed energy is dissipated as heat, a process measured as the non-photochemical quenching of chlorophyll fluorescence or qE. Although the biological significance of qE is established, the molecular mechanisms involved are not. LHCII, the main light-harvesting complex, has an inbuilt capability to undergo transformation into a dissipative state by conformational change and it was suggested that this provides a molecular basis for qE, but it is not known if such events occur in vivo or how energy is dissipated in this state. The transition into the dissipative state is associated with a twist in the configuration of the LHCII-bound carotenoid neoxanthin, identified using resonance Raman spectroscopy. Applying this technique to study isolated chloroplasts and whole leaves, we show here that the same change in neoxanthin configuration occurs in vivo, to an extent consistent with the magnitude of energy dissipation. Femtosecond transient absorption spectroscopy, performed on purified LHCII in the dissipative state, shows that energy is transferred from chlorophyll a to a low-lying carotenoid excited state, identified as one of the two luteins (lutein 1) in LHCII. Hence, it is experimentally demonstrated that a change in conformation of LHCII occurs in vivo, which opens a channel for energy dissipation by transfer to a bound carotenoid. We suggest that this is the principal mechanism of photoprotection.

  7. Role of Ca{sup ++}/calmodulin in the regulation of microtubules in higher plants. Progress report, FY91

    SciTech Connect

    Cyr, R.

    1991-12-31

    This work is aimed at defining the role of calcium/calmodulin in regulating cortical microtubules (MTS) in higher plants. Recent thrust has been to define the effects of calcium upon microtubules in vivo. Using lysed protoplasts, we noted Mts are destabilized by calcium/calmodulin. This effect could be the result of gross depolymerization induced by Ca{sup ++}/calmodulin, or by an increase in the dynamic flux rate. Intact protoplasts exposed to high (10 mM) levels of calcium (which would be expected to increase intercellular calcium levels) contained microtubules that were hypersensitive to Mt inhibitors, compared to control protoplasts exposed to low calcium environments.

  8. Linking Genetic Variation in Adaptive Plant Traits to Climate in Tetraploid and Octoploid Basin Wildrye [Leymus cinereus (Scribn. & Merr.) A. Love] in the Western U.S.

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, R. C.; Vance-Borland, Ken

    2016-01-01

    Few studies have assessed how ploidy type within a species affects genetic variation among populations in relation to source climates. Basin wildrye (Leymus cinereus (Scribn. & Merr.) A. Love) is a large bunchgrass common in the intermountain Western U.S. found in both octoploid and tetraploid types. In common gardens at two sites over two years differences in both ploidy type and genetic variation within ploidy were observed in phenology, morphology, and production traits on 57 octoploid and 52 tetraploid basin wildrye from the intermountain Western U.S. (P<0.01). Octoploids had larger leaves, longer culms, and greater crown circumference than tetraploids but the numerical ranges of plant traits and their source climates overlapped between ploidy types. Still, among populations octoploids often had greater genetic variation for traits and occupied more diverse climates than tetraploids. Genetic variation for both ploidy types was linked to source climates in canonical correlation analysis, with the first two variates explaining 70% of the variation. Regression of those canonical variates with seed source climate variables produced models that explained 64% and 38% of the variation, respectively, and were used to map 15 seed zones covering 673258 km2. Utilization of these seed zones will help ensure restoration with adaptive seed sources for both ploidy types. The link between genetic traits and seed source climates suggests climate driven natural selection and adaptive evolution in basin wildrye. The more diverse climates occupied by octoploids and higher trait variation suggests a higher capacity for ecological differentiation than tetraploids in the intermountain Western U.S. PMID:26881894

  9. Linking Genetic Variation in Adaptive Plant Traits to Climate in Tetraploid and Octoploid Basin Wildrye [Leymus cinereus (Scribn. & Merr.) A. Love] in the Western U.S.

    PubMed

    Johnson, R C; Vance-Borland, Ken

    2016-01-01

    Few studies have assessed how ploidy type within a species affects genetic variation among populations in relation to source climates. Basin wildrye (Leymus cinereus (Scribn. & Merr.) A. Love) is a large bunchgrass common in the intermountain Western U.S. found in both octoploid and tetraploid types. In common gardens at two sites over two years differences in both ploidy type and genetic variation within ploidy were observed in phenology, morphology, and production traits on 57 octoploid and 52 tetraploid basin wildrye from the intermountain Western U.S. (P<0.01). Octoploids had larger leaves, longer culms, and greater crown circumference than tetraploids but the numerical ranges of plant traits and their source climates overlapped between ploidy types. Still, among populations octoploids often had greater genetic variation for traits and occupied more diverse climates than tetraploids. Genetic variation for both ploidy types was linked to source climates in canonical correlation analysis, with the first two variates explaining 70% of the variation. Regression of those canonical variates with seed source climate variables produced models that explained 64% and 38% of the variation, respectively, and were used to map 15 seed zones covering 673,258 km2. Utilization of these seed zones will help ensure restoration with adaptive seed sources for both ploidy types. The link between genetic traits and seed source climates suggests climate driven natural selection and adaptive evolution in basin wildrye. The more diverse climates occupied by octoploids and higher trait variation suggests a higher capacity for ecological differentiation than tetraploids in the intermountain Western U.S.

  10. Use resources of human exometabolites of different oxidation levels for higher plants cultivation on the soil-like substrate as applied to closed ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tikhomirov, Alexander A.; Kudenko, Yurii; Ushakova, Sofya; Tirranen, Lyalya; Gribovskaya, Illiada; Gros, Jean-Bernard; Lasseur, Christophe

    The technology of ‘wet incineration' of human exometabolites and inedible plants biomass by means of H2 O2 in alternating electromagnetic field to increase a closure of mass exchange processes in bioregenerative life support systems (BLSS) was developed at the Institute of Biophysics of the Siberian Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences (Krasnoyarsk, Russia). Human exometabolites mineralized can be used in a nutrient solution for plants cultivation in the BLSS phototrophic link. The objective of the given work appears to be the study of use resources of human exometabolites of different oxidation levels processed by the abovementioned method for higher plants cultivation on the soil-like substrate (SLS). The mineralized human wastes were tested for the purpose of their sterility. Then the effect of human exometabolites of different oxidation levels both on wheat productivity and on the SLS microflora composition was examined. The SLS extract with a definite amount of human mineralized wastes was used as an irrigation solution. The conducted experiments demonstrated that the H2 O2 decreasing to 1 ml on 1 g of feces and to 0.25 ml on 1 ml of urine had not affected the sterility of mineralized human wastes. Wheat cultivation on the SLS with the addition in an irrigation solution of mineralized human wastes in the amount simulating 1/6 of a daily human diet showed the absence of basic dependence of plants productivity on oxidation level of human exometabolites. Yet the analysis of the microflora composition of the irrigation solutions demonstrated its dependence on the oxidation level of the exometabolites introduced. The amount of yeast-like fungi increased in 20 times in the solutions containing less oxidized exometabolites in comparison with the variant in which the human wastes were subjected to a full-scale oxidation. Besides, the solutions with less oxidized exometabolites displayed a bigger content of plant pathogenic bacteria and denitrifies. Consequently the

  11. Amino acids implicated in plant defense are higher in Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus-tolerant citrus varieties.

    PubMed

    Killiny, Nabil; Hijaz, Faraj

    2016-01-01

    Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB), also known as citrus greening, has been threatening the citrus industry since the early 1900's and up to this date there are no effective cures for this disease. Field observations and greenhouse controlled studies demonstrated that some citrus genotypes are more tolerant to Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (CLas) pathogen than others. However, the mechanisms underpinning tolerance has not been determined yet. The phloem sap composition of CLas-tolerant and sensitive citrus varieties was studied to identify metabolites that could be responsible for their tolerance to CLas. The citrus phloem sap was collected by centrifugation and was analyzed with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry after methyl chloroformate derivatization. Thirty-three metabolites were detected in the phloem sap of the studied varieties: twenty 20 amino acids, eight 8 organic acids, and five 5 fatty acids. Interestingly, the levels of most amino acids, especially those implicated in plantdefense to pathogens such as phenylalanine, tyrosine, tryptophan, lysine, and asparagine were higher in tolerant varieties. Although the level of organic acids varied between cultivars, this variation was not correlated with citrus resistance to CLas and could be cultivar specific. The fatty acids were found in trace amounts and in most cases their levels were not significantly different among varieties. Better understanding of the mechanisms underpinning citrus tolerance to CLas will help in developing economically tolerant varieties.

  12. Amino acids implicated in plant defense are higher in Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus-tolerant citrus varieties

    PubMed Central

    Killiny, Nabil; Hijaz, Faraj

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Citrus Huanglongbing (HLB), also known as citrus greening, has been threatening the citrus industry since the early 1900's and up to this date there are no effective cures for this disease. Field observations and greenhouse controlled studies demonstrated that some citrus genotypes are more tolerant to Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (CLas) pathogen than others. However, the mechanisms underpinning tolerance has not been determined yet. The phloem sap composition of CLas-tolerant and sensitive citrus varieties was studied to identify metabolites that could be responsible for their tolerance to CLas. The citrus phloem sap was collected by centrifugation and was analyzed with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry after methyl chloroformate derivatization. Thirty-three metabolites were detected in the phloem sap of the studied varieties: twenty 20 amino acids, eight 8 organic acids, and five 5 fatty acids. Interestingly, the levels of most amino acids, especially those implicated in plantdefense to pathogens such as phenylalanine, tyrosine, tryptophan, lysine, and asparagine were higher in tolerant varieties. Although the level of organic acids varied between cultivars, this variation was not correlated with citrus resistance to CLas and could be cultivar specific. The fatty acids were found in trace amounts and in most cases their levels were not significantly different among varieties. Better understanding of the mechanisms underpinning citrus tolerance to CLas will help in developing economically tolerant varieties. PMID:27057814

  13. Zeaxanthin Radical Cation Formation in Minor Light-Harvesting Complexes of Higher Plant Antenna

    SciTech Connect

    Avenson, Thomas H.; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Zigmantas, Donatas; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Li, Zhirong; Ballottari, Matteo; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2008-01-31

    Previous work on intact thylakoid membranes showed that transient formation of a zeaxanthin radical cation was correlated with regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting via energy-dependent quenching. A molecular mechanism for such quenching was proposed to involve charge transfer within a chlorophyll-zeaxanthin heterodimer. Using near infrared (880-1100 nm) transient absorption spectroscopy, we demonstrate that carotenoid (mainly zeaxanthin) radical cation generation occurs solely in isolated minor light-harvesting complexes that bind zeaxanthin, consistent with the engagement of charge transfer quenching therein. We estimated that less than 0.5percent of the isolated minor complexes undergo charge transfer quenching in vitro, whereas the fraction of minor complexes estimated to be engaged in charge transfer quenching in isolated thylakoids was more than 80 times higher. We conclude that minor complexes which bind zeaxanthin are sites of charge transfer quenching in vivo and that they can assume Non-quenching and Quenching conformations, the equilibrium LHC(N)<--> LHC(Q) of which is modulated by the transthylakoid pH gradient, the PsbS protein, and protein-protein interactions.

  14. Effects of time delay and space on herbivore dynamics: linking inducible defenses of plants to herbivore outbreak

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Gui-Quan; Wang, Su-Lan; Ren, Qian; Jin, Zhen; Wu, Yong-Ping

    2015-06-01

    Empirical results indicate that inducible defenses of plants have effects on herbivore populations. However, little is known about how inducible defenses of plants have influences on herbivore outbreak when space effect is considered. To reveal the relationship between inducible defenses and herbivore outbreak, we present a mathematical model to describe the interaction of them. It was found that time delay plays dual effects in the persistence of herbivore populations: (i) large value of time delay may be associated with small density of herbivore populations, and thus causes the populations to run a higher risk of extinction; (ii) moderate value of time delay is beneficial for maintaining herbivore density in a determined range which may promote the persistence of herbivore populations. Additionally, we revealed that interaction of time delay and space promotes the growth of average density of herbivore populations during their outbreak period which implied that time delay may drive the resilience of herbivore populations. Our findings highlight the close relationship between inducible defenses of plants and herbivore outbreak.

  15. Effects of time delay and space on herbivore dynamics: linking inducible defenses of plants to herbivore outbreak.

    PubMed

    Sun, Gui-Quan; Wang, Su-Lan; Ren, Qian; Jin, Zhen; Wu, Yong-Ping

    2015-06-18

    Empirical results indicate that inducible defenses of plants have effects on herbivore populations. However, little is known about how inducible defenses of plants have influences on herbivore outbreak when space effect is considered. To reveal the relationship between inducible defenses and herbivore outbreak, we present a mathematical model to describe the interaction of them. It was found that time delay plays dual effects in the persistence of herbivore populations: (i) large value of time delay may be associated with small density of herbivore populations, and thus causes the populations to run a higher risk of extinction; (ii) moderate value of time delay is beneficial for maintaining herbivore density in a determined range which may promote the persistence of herbivore populations. Additionally, we revealed that interaction of time delay and space promotes the growth of average density of herbivore populations during their outbreak period which implied that time delay may drive the resilience of herbivore populations. Our findings highlight the close relationship between inducible defenses of plants and herbivore outbreak.

  16. Linking Turgor with ABA Biosynthesis: Implications for Stomatal Responses to Vapor Pressure Deficit across Land Plants1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    McAdam, Scott A.M.; Brodribb, Timothy J.

    2016-01-01

    Stomatal responses to changes in vapor pressure deficit (VPD) constitute the predominant form of daytime gas-exchange regulation in plants. Stomatal closure in response to increased VPD is driven by the rapid up-regulation of foliar abscisic acid (ABA) biosynthesis and ABA levels in angiosperms; however, very little is known about the physiological trigger for this increase in ABA biosynthesis at increased VPD. Using a novel method of modifying leaf cell turgor by the application of external pressures, we test whether changes in turgor pressure can trigger increases in foliar ABA levels over 20 min, a period of time most relevant to the stomatal response to VPD. We found in angiosperm species that the biosynthesis of ABA was triggered by reductions in leaf turgor, and in two species tested, that a higher sensitivity of ABA synthesis to leaf turgor corresponded with a higher stomatal sensitivity to VPD. In contrast, representative species from nonflowering plant lineages did not show a rapid turgor-triggered increase in foliar ABA levels, which is consistent with previous studies demonstrating passive stomatal responses to changes in VPD in these lineages. Our method provides a new tool for characterizing the response of stomata to water availability. PMID:27208264

  17. Linking the planting of cover crops to soil and water nutrient dynamics in Shatto Ditch Watershed, IN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christopher, S. F.; Tank, J. L.; Hanrahan, B. R.; Mahl, U. H.; Huang, K.

    2013-12-01

    Tile drainage systems are common in the Midwest, and facilitate the transfer of excess inorganic nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) from agricultural soils to adjacent streams. These non-point sources contribute to elevated nutrient loads to tributaries in the Mississippi River Basin, which have been linked to widespread hypoxia and associated ecological and economic problems in the Gulf of Mexico. In agricultural areas dominated by row-crops, the planting of cover crops after the cash crop has been harvested offers a potential mechanism to reduce nutrient leaching from fields to tile drains in the off-season. In general, cover crops retain nutrients on fields and increase soil organic matter (SOM) content after they are harvested. The planting of cover crops also promotes immobilization of soil N and reduction in losses of dissolved P from soils due to reduced erosion, resulting in significantly less leaching to surface waters through tile drains. As part of a demonstration project in the Shatto Ditch Watershed, located in the Tippecanoe River Basin, IN, we are testing whether the planting of cover crops will influence soil nutrient and organic matter, and how cover crops alter the dynamics of nutrient leaching from tile drains. We have been sampling tile drain outflows on a twice-monthly sampling regime and have been measuring dissolved inorganic N and P concentrations in tile water since November 2012. During Spring 2013, tile drain nitrate concentrations sampled synoptically throughout the watershed ranged from 2.6 - 38.9 mg NO3- L -1 (mean = 17.2 +/- 1.6 mg NO3- L -1) with the lowest concentrations coming from fields planted in cover crops (range = 2.6 - 19.0 mg NO3- L -1, mean = 9.7 +/- 1.5 mg NO3- L -1). In contrast, soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP) concentrations were much lower in tile drain water and ranged from 7.5 - 182.7 μg L-1 (mean = 24.5 +/- 5.0 μg L-1 SRP) and preliminary data suggest that there were no differences between fields with and without

  18. Higher β-diversity observed for herbs over woody plants is driven by stronger habitat filtering in a tropical understory.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Stephen J; Salpeter, Kara; Comita, Liza S

    2016-08-01

    Herbaceous plants are a key component of tropical forests. Previous work indicates that herbs contribute substantially to the species richness of tropical plant communities. However, the processes structuring tropical herb diversity, and how they contrast with woody communities, have been underexplored. Within the understory of a 50-ha forest dynamics plot in central Panama, we compared the diversity, distribution, and abundance of vascular herbaceous plants with woody seedlings (i.e., tree and lianas <1 cm DBH and ≥20 cm tall). Beta-diversity was calculated for each community using a null model approach. We then assessed the similarity in alpha and beta-diversity among herbs, tree seedlings, and liana seedlings. Strengths of habitat associations were measured using permutational ANOVA among topographic habitat-types. Variance partitioning was then used to quantify the amount of variation in species richness and composition explained by spatial and environmental variables (i.e., topography, soils, and shade) for each growth form. Species richness and diversity were highest for tree seedlings, followed by liana seedlings and then herbs. In contrast, beta-diversity was 16-127% higher for herbs compared to woody seedlings, indicating higher spatial variation in this stratum. We observed no correlation between local richness or compositional uniqueness of herbs and woody seedlings across sites, indicating that different processes control the spatial patterns of woody and herbaceous diversity and composition. Habitat associations were strongest for herbs, as indicated by greater compositional dissimilarity among habitat types. Likewise, environmental variables explained a larger proportion of the variation in species richness and composition for herbs than for woody seedlings (richness = 25%, 14%, 12%; composition = 25%, 9%, 6%, for herbs, trees, and lianas, respectively). These differences between strata did not appear to be due to differences in lifespan alone

  19. Granal stacking of thylakoid membranes in higher plant chloroplasts: the physicochemical forces at work and the functional consequences that ensue.

    PubMed

    Chow, Wah Soon; Kim, Eun-Ha; Horton, Peter; Anderson, Jan M

    2005-12-01

    The formation of grana in chloroplasts of higher plants is examined in terms of the subtle interplay of physicochemical forces of attraction and repulsion. The attractive forces between two adjacent membranes comprise (1) van der Waals attraction that depends on the abundance and type of atoms in each membrane, on the distance between the membranes and on the dielectric constant, (2) depletion attraction that generates local order by granal stacking at the expense of greater disorder (i.e. entropy) in the stroma, and (3) an electrostatic attraction of opposite charges located on adjacent membranes. The repulsive forces comprise (1) electrostatic repulsion due to the net negative charge on the outer surface of thylakoid membranes, (2) hydration repulsion that operates at small separations between thylakoid membranes due to layers of bound water molecules, and (3) steric hindrance due to bulky protrusions of Photosystem I (PSI) and ATP synthase into the stroma. In addition, specific interactions may occur, but they await experimental demonstration. Although grana are not essential for photosynthesis, they are ubiquitous in higher plants. Grana may have been selected during evolution for the functional advantages that they confer on higher plants. The functional consequences of grana stacking include (1) enhancement of light capture through a vastly increased area-to-volume ratio and connectivity of several PSIIs with large functional antenna size, (2) the ability to control the lateral separation of PSI from PSII and, therefore, the balanced distribution of excitation energy between two photosystems working in series, (3) the reversible fine-tuning of energy distribution between the photosystems by State 1-State 2 transitions, (4) the ability to regulate light-harvesting via controlled thermal dissipation of excess excitation energy, detected as non-photochemical quenching, (5) dynamic flexibility in the light reactions mediated by a granal structure in response to

  20. Over-expression of AtPAP2 in Camelina sativa leads to faster plant growth and higher seed yield

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Lipids extracted from seeds of Camelina sativa have been successfully used as a reliable source of aviation biofuels. This biofuel is environmentally friendly because the drought resistance, frost tolerance and low fertilizer requirement of Camelina sativa allow it to grow on marginal lands. Improving the species growth and seed yield by genetic engineering is therefore a target for the biofuels industry. In Arabidopsis, overexpression of purple acid phosphatase 2 encoded by Arabidopsis (AtPAP2) promotes plant growth by modulating carbon metabolism. Overexpression lines bolt earlier and produce 50% more seeds per plant than wild type. In this study, we explored the effects of overexpressing AtPAP2 in Camelina sativa. Results Under controlled environmental conditions, overexpression of AtPAP2 in Camelina sativa resulted in longer hypocotyls, earlier flowering, faster growth rate, higher photosynthetic rate and stomatal conductance, increased seed yield and seed size in comparison with the wild-type line and null-lines. Similar to transgenic Arabidopsis, activity of sucrose phosphate synthase in leaves of transgenic Camelina was also significantly up-regulated. Sucrose produced in photosynthetic tissues supplies the building blocks for cellulose, starch and lipids for growth and fuel for anabolic metabolism. Changes in carbon flow and sink/source activities in transgenic lines may affect floral, architectural, and reproductive traits of plants. Conclusions Lipids extracted from the seeds of Camelina sativa have been used as a major constituent of aviation biofuels. The improved growth rate and seed yield of transgenic Camelina under controlled environmental conditions have the potential to boost oil yield on an area basis in field conditions and thus make Camelina-based biofuels more environmentally friendly and economically attractive. PMID:22472516

  1. Isolation of photosystem II-enriched membranes and the oxygen-evolving complex subunit proteins from higher plants.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Yasusi; Leng, Jing; Shen, Jian-Ren

    2011-01-01

    We describe methods to isolate highly active oxygen-evolving photosystem II (PSII) membranes and core complexes from higher plants, and to purify subunits of the oxygen-evolving complex (OEC). The membrane samples used as the material for various in vitro studies of PSII are prepared by solubilizing thylakoid membranes with the nonionic detergent Triton X-100, and the core complexes are prepared by further solubilization of the PSII membranes with n-dodecyl-β-D-maltoside (β-DDM). The OEC subunit proteins are dissociated from the PSII-enriched membranes by alkaline or salt treatment, and are then purified by ion-exchange chromatography using an automated high performance liquid chromatography system.

  2. Isolation and characterization of soluble boron complexes in higher plants. The mechanism of phloem mobility of boron.

    PubMed Central

    Hu, H; Penn, S G; Lebrilla, C B; Brown, P H

    1997-01-01

    Boron (B) polyol complexes have been isolated and characterized from the phloem sap of celery (Apium graveolens L.) and the extrafloral nectar of peach (Prunus persica L.). In celery the direct analysis of untreated phloem sap by matrix-assisted laser desorption-Fourier transform mass spectrometry, with verification by high-performance liquid chromagraphy and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, revealed that B is present in the phloem as the mannitol-B-mannitol complex. Molecular modeling further predicted that this complex is present in the 3,4 3',4' bis-mannitol configuration. In the extrafloral nectar of peach, B was present as a mixture of sorbitol-B-sorbitol, fructose-B-fructose, or sorbitol-B-fructose. To our knowledge, these findings represent the first successful isolation and characterization of soluble B complexes from higher plants and provide a mechanistic explanation for the observed phloem B mobility in these species. PMID:9046600

  3. Genotoxicity Assessment of Volatile Organic Compounds in Landfill Gas Emission Using Comet Assay in Higher Terrestrial Plant.

    PubMed

    Na Roi-Et, Veerapas; Chiemchaisri, Wilai; Chiemchaisri, Chart

    2017-02-01

    Genotoxicity model is developed to assess the individual subacute toxicity of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX) at very low levels as in a landfill gas. Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum), a higher plant, was tested under variation of benzene 54-5656 ng/L, toluene 10-4362 ng/L, ethylbenzene 28-4997 ng/L, xylene 53-4845 ng/L, for 96 h. DNA fragmentation in plant leaves were investigated via comet assay. The results show that DNA migration ratio increased with the BTEX concentrations, but at different rates. The 50% effective concentration (EC50) of DNA fragmentation from the dose-response relationships indicated toluene has the highest EC50 value and followed by benzene, xylene and ethylbenzene. Alternatively, ethylbenzene has the highest toxicity unit and followed by xylene, benzene and toluene as described by toxicity unit (TU). In conclusion, comet assay of Pothos can be used in differentiating DNA fragmentation against very low levels of BTEX in the atmosphere. Pothos is recommended for genotoxicity assessment of a low BTEX contaminated atmosphere.

  4. Characterization of the Nrt2.6 Gene in Arabidopsis thaliana: A Link with Plant Response to Biotic and Abiotic Stress

    PubMed Central

    Dechorgnat, Julie; Patrit, Oriane; Krapp, Anne; Fagard, Mathilde; Daniel-Vedele, Françoise

    2012-01-01

    The high affinity nitrate transport system in Arabidopsis thaliana involves one gene and potentially seven genes from the NRT1 and NRT2 family, respectively. Among them, NRT2.1, NRT2.2, NRT2.4 and NRT2.7 proteins have been shown to transport nitrate and are localized on the plasmalemma or the tonoplast membranes. NRT2.1, NRT2.2 and NRT2.4 play a role in nitrate uptake from soil solution by root cells while NRT2.7 is responsible for nitrate loading in the seed vacuole. We have undertaken the functional characterization of a third member of the family, the NRT2.6 gene. NRT2.6 was weakly expressed in most plant organs and its expression was higher in vegetative organs than in reproductive organs. Contrary to other NRT2 members, NRT2.6 expression was not induced by limiting but rather by high nitrogen levels, and no nitrate-related phenotype was found in the nrt2.6-1 mutant. Consistently, the over-expression of the gene failed to complement the nitrate uptake defect of an nrt2.1-nrt2.2 double mutant. The NRT2.6 expression is induced after inoculation of Arabidopsis thaliana by the phytopathogenic bacterium Erwinia amylovora. Interestingly, plants with a decreased NRT2.6 expression showed a lower tolerance to pathogen attack. A correlation was found between NRT2.6 expression and ROS species accumulation in response to infection by E. amylovora and treatment with the redox-active herbicide methyl viologen, suggesting a probable link between NRT2.6 activity and the production of ROS in response to biotic and abiotic stress. PMID:22880003

  5. Tracing the link between plant volatile organic compound emissions and CO2 fluxes and by stable isotopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werner, Christiane; Wegener, Frederik; Jardine, Kolby

    2015-04-01

    The vegetation exerts a large influence on the atmosphere through the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and the emission and uptake of the greenhouse gas CO2. Despite the enormous importance, processes controlling plant carbon allocation into primary and secondary metabolism, such as photosynthetic carbon uptake, respiratory CO2 emission and VOC synthesis, remains unclear. Moreover, vegetation-atmosphere CO2 exchange is associated with a large isotopic imprint due to photosynthetic carbon isotope discrimination and 13C-fractionation during respiratory CO2 release1. The latter has been proposed to be related to carbon partitioning in the metabolic branching points of the respiratory pathways and secondary metabolism, which are linked via a number of interfaces including the central metabolite pyruvate. Notably, it is a known substrate in a large array of secondary pathways leading to the biosynthesis of many volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as volatile isoprenoids, oxygenated VOCs, aromatics, fatty acid oxidation products, which can be emitted by plants. Here we investigate the linkage between VOC emissions, CO2 fluxes and associated isotope effects based on simultaneous real-time measurements of stable carbon isotope composition of branch respired CO2 (CRDS) and VOC fluxes (PTR-MS). We utilized positionally specific 13C-labeled pyruvate branch feeding experiments in the mediterranean shrub (Halimium halimifolium) to trace the partitioning of C1, C2, and C3 carbon atoms of pyruvate into VOCs versus CO2 emissions in the light and in the dark. In the light, we found high emission rates of a large array of VOC including volatile isoprenoids, oxygenated VOCs, green leaf volatiles, aromatics, sulfides, and nitrogen containing VOCs. These observations suggest that in the light, H. halimifolium dedicates a high carbon flux through secondary biosynthetic pathways including the pyruvate dehydrogenase bypass, mevalonic acid, MEP/DOXP, shikimic acid, and

  6. Molecular characterization of a novel heavy metal uptake transporter from higher plants and its potential for use in phytoremediation. 1997 annual progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Schroeder, J.I.

    1997-01-01

    'In the following the author reports on progress on the Department of Energy Grant from the Office of Energy Research and Office of Environmental Management on the topic of Molecular characterization of a novel heavy metal uptake transporter from higher plants and its potential use in phytoremediation. In this research the authors are investigating the following hypotheses: (1) A novel metal transporter cDNA isolated in my lab functions as a plasma membrane heavy metal and uptake transporter in plants roots. (2.) Over-expression of this cDNA in plants can be used to enhance plasma membrane metal uptake into plant tissues.'

  7. Higher energy collision dissociation (HCD) product ion-triggered electron transfer dissociation (ETD) mass spectrometry for the analysis of N-linked glycoproteins.

    PubMed

    Singh, Charandeep; Zampronio, Cleidiane G; Creese, Andrew J; Cooper, Helen J

    2012-09-07

    Large scale mass spectrometry analysis of N-linked glycopeptides is complicated by the inherent complexity of the glycan structures. Here, we evaluate a mass spectrometry approach for the targeted analysis of N-linked glycopeptides in complex mixtures that does not require prior knowledge of the glycan structures or pre-enrichment of the glycopeptides. Despite the complexity of N-glycans, the core of the glycan remains constant, comprising two N-acetylglucosamine and three mannose units. Collision-induced dissociation (CID) mass spectrometry of N-glycopeptides results in the formation of the N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) oxonium ion and a [mannose+GlcNAc] fragment (in addition to other fragments resulting from cleavage within the glycan). In ion-trap CID, those ions are not detected due to the low m/z cutoff; however, they are detected following the beam-type CID known as higher energy collision dissociation (HCD) on the orbitrap mass spectrometer. The presence of these product ions following HCD can be used as triggers for subsequent electron transfer dissociation (ETD) mass spectrometry analysis of the precursor ion. The ETD mass spectrum provides peptide sequence information, which is unobtainable from HCD. A Lys-C digest of ribonuclease B and trypsin digest of immunoglobulin G were separated by ZIC-HILIC liquid chromatography and analyzed by HCD product ion-triggered ETD. The data were analyzed both manually and by search against protein databases by commonly used algorithms. The results show that the product ion-triggered approach shows promise for the field of glycoproteomics and highlight the requirement for more sophisticated data mining tools.

  8. Slow molecular evolution in 18S rDNA, rbcL and nad5 genes of mosses compared with higher plants.

    PubMed

    Stenøien, H K

    2008-03-01

    The evolutionary potential of bryophytes (mosses, liverworts and hornworts) has been debated for decades. Fossil record and biogeographical distribution patterns suggest very slow morphological evolution and the retainment of several ancient traits since the split with vascular plants some 450 million years ago. Many have argued that bryophytes may evolve as rapidly as higher plants on the molecular level, but this hypothesis has not been tested so far. Here, it is shown that mosses have experienced significantly lower rates of molecular evolution than higher plants within 18S rDNA (nuclear), rbcL (chloroplast) and nad5 (mitochondrial) genes. Mosses are on an average evolving 2-3 times slower than ferns, gymnosperms and angiosperms; and also green algae seem to be evolving faster than nonvascular plants. These results support the observation of a general correlation between morphological and molecular evolutionary rates in plants and also show that mosses are 'evolutionary sphinxes' regarding both morphological and molecular evolutionary potential.

  9. [Impacts of human disturbance on the species composition of higher plants in the wetlands around Dianchi Lake, Yunnan Province of Southwest China].

    PubMed

    Xiang, Xi-Xi; Wu, Zhao-Lu; Luo, Kang; Ding, Hong-Bo; Zhang, Hai-Yan

    2013-09-01

    Introducing higher plants to build semi-natural wetland ecosystem is one of the key approaches to restore the wetlands and lakes that suffered from serious pollution and destruction. Based on the investigation data from 128 quadrats at 26 sampling sites in the wetlands around Dianchi Lake in December 2011-October 2012, and in combining with the references published in the 1960s, this paper discussed the impacts of human activities on the species composition of higher plants in the wetlands around the Lake. In 2012, there were 299 species of 88 families in the wetlands, of which, 181 species were native species, and 118 species were alien ones (including 32 invasive species). Of the 42 species of hydrophytes in the total species, 13 species were alien ones (including 2 invasive species). In comparing with the species data recorded in the 1960s, 232 plants were newly recorded and 43 species disappeared in 2012. Aquatic plants changed obviously. The decreased species were 2 submerged plants, 2 floating plants, and 5 floating leaved plants, and the increased species were 8 emergent plants. Fourteen community types were identified by cluster analysis, of which, the main communities were those dominated by alien species including Pistia stratiotes and Alternanthera philoxeroides. As compared with the data in the 1960s, the plant communities dominated by native species such as Ottelia acuminate and Vallisneria natans were not found presently. Therefore, in the practice of introducing higher plants to restore the degraded wetlands and lakes, it would be necessary to scientifically and appropriately select and blend plant species to avoid the wetland degradation by human activities.

  10. Results of the first stage (2002-2009) of investigation of higher plants onboard RS ISS, as an element of future closed Life Support Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sychev, Vladimir; Levinskikh, Margarita; Podolsky, Igor; Bingham, Gail; Novikova, Nataliya; Sugimoto, Manabu

    A key task for biomedical human support in long-term manned space expeditions is the develop-ment of the Life Support System (LSS). It is expected that in the first continuous interplanetary expeditions LSS of only a few biological elements of the LSS, such as higher plants will be in-cluded. Therefore, investigations of growth and development of higher plants for consideration in the LSS are of high importance. In a period from October, 2002 to December 2009, 15 ex-periments on cultivation of different plants, including two genetically marked species of dwarf peas, a leaf vegetable strain of Mizuna, radish, barley and wheat were conducted in space greenhouse "LADA" onboard Russian Segment (RS) of International Space Station (ISS). The experiments resulted in the conclusion that the properties of growth and development of plants grown in space greenhouse "LADA" were unaffected by spaceflight conditions. In experiments conducted in a period from 2003 to 2005, it was shown for the first time that pea plants pre-serve reproductive functions, forming viable seeds during at least four continuous full cycles of ontogenesis ("seed to seed") under spaceflight conditions. No changes were found in the genetic apparatus of the pea plants in the four "space" generations. Since 2005, there have been routine collections of microbiological samples from the surfaces of the plants grown on-board in "LADA" greenhouse. Analysis has shown that the properties of contamination of the plants grown aboard by microorganism contain no abnormal patterns. Since 2008, the plants cultivated in "LADA" greenhouse have been frozen onboard RS ISS in the MELFI refrigerator and transferred to the Earth for further investigations. Investigations of Mizuna plants grown and frozen onboard of ISS, showed no differences between "ground control" and "space" plants in chemical and biochemical properties. There also no stress-response was found in kashinriki strain barley planted and frozen onboard ISS.

  11. Formation of higher-order nuclear Rad51 structures is functionally linked to p21 expression and protection from DNA damage-induced apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Raderschall, Elke; Bazarov, Alex; Cao, Jiangping; Lurz, Rudi; Smith, Avril; Mann, Wolfgang; Ropers, Hans-Hilger; Sedivy, John M; Golub, Efim I; Fritz, Eberhard; Haaf, Thomas

    2002-01-01

    After exposure of mammalian cells to DNA damage, the endogenous Rad51 recombination protein is concentrated in multiple discrete foci, which are thought to represent nuclear domains for recombinational DNA repair. Overexpressed Rad51 protein forms foci and higher-order nuclear structures, even in the absence of DNA damage, in cells that do not undergo DNA replication synthesis. This correlates with increased expression of the cyclin-dependent kinase (Cdk) inhibitor p21. Following DNA damage, constitutively Rad51-overexpressing cells show reduced numbers of DNA breaks and chromatid-type chromosome aberrations and a greater resistance to apoptosis. In contrast, Rad51 antisense inhibition reduces p21 protein levels and sensitizes cells to etoposide treatment. Downregulation of p21 inhibits Rad51 foci formation in both normal and Rad51-overexpressing cells. Collectively, our results show that Rad51 expression, Rad51 foci formation and p21 expression are interrelated, suggesting a functional link between mammalian Rad51 protein and p21-mediated cell cycle regulation. This mechanism may contribute to a highly effective recombinational DNA repair in cell cycle-arrested cells and protection against DNA damage-induced apoptosis.

  12. Research tools: ethylene preparation. In: Chi-Kuang Wen editor. Ethylene in plants. Springer Netherlands. Springer Link

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ethylene is a plant hormone that regulates many aspects of plant growth and development, germination, fruit ripening, senescence, sex determination, abscission, defense, gravitropism, epinasty, and more. For experimental purposes, one needs to treat plant material with ethylene and its inhibitors t...

  13. Leaves of higher plants as biomonitors of radionuclides (137Cs, 40K, 210Pb and 7Be) in urban air.

    PubMed

    Todorović, Dragana; Popović, Dragana; Ajtić, Jelena; Nikolić, Jelena

    2013-01-01

    Leaves of linden (Tilia tomentosa L. and Tilia cordata Mill.) and horse chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum L.) were analysed as biomonitors of radionuclides in urban air. Samples of soils, leaves and aerosols were collected in Belgrade, Serbia. Activities of (137)Cs, (40)K, (210)Pb and (7)Be in the samples were measured on an HPGe detector by standard gamma spectrometry. "Soil-to-leaves" transfer factors were calculated. Student's t test and linear Pearson correlation coefficients were used for statistical analysis. Differences in local conditions at the sampling sites were not significant, and the mechanisms of the radionuclides' accumulation in both plant species are similar. Ceasium-137 was detected in some of the leaf samples only. Transfer factors for (137)Cs and (40)K were (0.03-0.08) and 1.3, respectively. The concentrations of (210)Pb and (7)Be in leaves were higher in autumn than in spring, and there were some similarities in their seasonal patterns in leaves and in air. Weak to medium correlation was obtained for the (210)Pb and (7)Be activities in leaves and aerosols. Large positive correlation was obtained for the (210)Pb activities in linden leaves and the mean activity in aerosols for the preceding months. Different primary modes of radionuclides accumulation in leaves were observed. Since large positive correlation was obtained for the (210)Pb activity in linden leaves and the mean in aerosols for the preceding months, mature linden leaves could be used as biomonitors of recent (210)Pb activity in air.

  14. Evidence for a universal pathway of abscisic acid biosynthesis in higher plants from sup 18 O incorporation patterns

    SciTech Connect

    Zeevaart, J.A.D.; Heath, T.G.; Gage, D.A. )

    1989-12-01

    Previous labeling studies of abscisic acid (ABA) with {sup 18}O{sub 2} have been mainly conducted with water-stressed leaves. In this study, {sup 18}O incorporation into ABA of stressed leaves of various species was compared with {sup 18}O labeling of ABA of turgid leaves and of fruit tissue in different stages of ripening. In stressed leaves of all six species investigated, avocado (Persea americana), barley (Hordeum vulgare), bean (Phaseolus vulgaris), cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium), spinach (Spinacia oleracea), and tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum), {sup 18}O was most abundant in the carboxyl group, whereas incorporation of a second and third {sup 18}O in the oxygen atoms on the ring of ABA was much less prominent after 24 h in {sup 18}O{sub 2}. ABA from turgid bean leaves showed significant {sup 18}O incorporation, again with highest {sup 18}O enrichment in the carboxyl group. On the basis of {sup 18}O-labeling patterns observed in ABA from different tissues it is concluded that, despite variations in precusor pool sizes and intermediate turnover rates, there is a universal pathway of ABA biosynthesis in higher plants which involves cleavage of a larger precursor molecule, presumably an oxygenated carotenoid.

  15. Linking chlorophyll fluorescence, hyperspectral reflectance and plant physiological responses to detect stress using the photochemical reflectance index (PRI) (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naumann, J. C.; Young, D.; Anderson, J.

    2009-12-01

    The concept of using vegetation as sentinels to indicate natural or anthropogenic stress is not new and could potentially provide an ideal mechanism for large-scale detection. Advances in fluorescence spectroscopy and reflectance-derived fluorescence have made possible earlier detection of stress in plants, especially before changes in chlorophyll content are visible. Our studies have been used to fuse leaf fluorescence and reflectance characteristics to remotely sense and rapidly detect vegetation stress and terrain characteristics. Laboratory studies have indicated that light-adapted fluorescence (ΔF/F‧m) measurements have been successful in all experiments at detecting stress from flooding, salinity, drought, herbicide and TNT contamination prior to visible signs of damage. ΔF/F‧m was related to plant physiological status in natural stress conditions, as seen in the relationships with stomatal conductance and photosynthesis The photochemical reflectance index (PRI) and other reflectance ratios were effective at tracking changes in ΔF/F‧m at the leaf and canopy-level scales. At the landscape-level, chlorophyll fluorescence and airborne reflectance imagery were used to evaluate spatial variations in stress in the dominant shrub on a barrier island, Myrica cerifera, during a severe drought and compared to an extremely wet year. Measurements of relative water content and the water band index (WBI970) indicated that water stress did not vary across the island. In contrast, there were significant differences in tissue chlorides across sites. Using PRI we were able to detect salinity stress across the landscape. PRI did not differ between wet and dry years. There was a positive relationship between PRI and ΔF/F‧m for M. cerifera (r2 = 0.79). The normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), the chlorophyll index (CI) and WBI970 were higher during the wet summer but varied little across the island. PRI was not significantly related to NDVI, suggesting that

  16. Polyamine formation by arginine decarboxylase as a transducer of hormonal, environmental and stress stimuli in higher plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Galston, A. W.; Flores, H. E.; Kaur-Sawhney, R.

    1982-01-01

    Recent evidence implicates polyamines including putrescine in the regulation of such diverse plant processes as cell division, embryogenesis and senescence. We find that the enzyme arginine decarboxylase, which controls the rate of putrescine formation in some plant systems, is activated by light acting through P(r) phytochrome as a receptor, by the plant hormone gibberellic acid, by osmotic shock and by other stress stimuli. We therefore propose arginine decarboxylase as a possible transducer of the various initially received tropistic stimuli in plants. The putrescine formed could act by affecting cytoskeletal components.

  17. Thermal dissipation of light energy is regulated differently and by different mechanisms in lichens and higher plants.

    PubMed

    Kopecky, J; Azarkovich, M; Pfündel, E E; Shuvalov, V A; Heber, U

    2005-03-01

    Modulated chlorophyll fluorescence was used to compare dissipation of light energy as heat in photosystem II of homoiohydric and poikilohydric photosynthetic organisms which were either hydrated or dehydrated. In hydrated chlorolichens with an alga as the photobiont, fluorescence quenching revealed a dominant mechanism of energy dissipation which was based on a protonation reaction when zeaxanthin was present. CO2 was effective as a weak protonating agent and actinic light was not necessary. In a hydrated cyanobacterial lichen, protonation by CO2 was ineffective to initiate energy dissipation. This was also true for leaves of higher plants. Thus, regulation of zeaxanthin-dependent energy dissipation by protonation was different in leaves and in chlorolichens. A mechanism of energy dissipation different from that based on zeaxanthin became apparent on dehydration of both lichens and leaves. Quenching of maximum or Fm fluorescence increased strongly during dehydration. In lichens, this was also true for so-called basal or Fo fluorescence. In contrast to zeaxanthin-dependent quenching, dehydration-induced quenching could not be inhibited by dithiothreitol. Both zeaxanthin-dependent and dehydration-induced quenching cooperated in chlorolichens to increase thermal dissipation of light energy if desiccation occurred in the light. In cyanolichens, which do not possess a zeaxanthin cycle, only desiccation-induced thermal energy dissipation was active in the dry state. Fluorescence emission spectra of chlorolichens revealed stronger desiccation-induced suppression of 685-nm fluorescence than of 720-nm fluorescence. In agreement with earlier reports of , fluorescence excitation data showed that desiccation reduced flow of excitation energy from chlorophyll b of the light harvesting complex II to emitting centres more than flow from chlorophyll a of core pigments. The data are discussed in relation to regulation and localization of thermal energy dissipation mechanisms. It is

  18. A Comprehensive Phylogeny Reveals Functional Conservation of the UV-B Photoreceptor UVR8 from Green Algae to Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Fernández, María B.; Tossi, Vanesa; Lamattina, Lorenzo; Cassia, Raúl

    2016-01-01

    Ultraviolet-B (UV-B) is present in sunlight (280–315 nm) and has diverse effects on living organisms. Low fluence rate of exposure induces a specific photomorphogenic response regulated by the UV-B response locus 8 (UVR8) receptor. UVR8 was first described in Arabidopsis thaliana. In the absence of stimuli it is located in the cytoplasm as a homodimer. However, upon UV-B irradiation, it switches to a monomer and interacts with the ubiquitin ligase E3 COP1 via the UVR8 β-propeller domain and the VP core. This induces the expression of the transcription factor HY5 leading to changes in the expression of genes associated with UV-B acclimation and stress tolerance. UVR8 senses UV-B through tryptophan residues being Trp233 and 285 the most important. Based on the comparison and analysis of UVR8 functionally important motifs, we report a comprehensive phylogeny of UVR8, trying to identify UVR8 homologs and the ancestral organism where this gene could be originated. Results obtained showed that Chlorophytes are the first organisms from the Viridiplantae group where UVR8 appears. UVR8 is present in green algae, bryophytes, lycophytes, and angiosperms. All the sequences identified contain tryptophans 233 and 285, arginines involved in homodimerization and the VP domain suggesting they are true UVR8 photoreceptors. We also determined that some species from bryophytes and angiosperms contain more than one UVR8 gene copy posing the question if UVR8 could constitute a gene family in these species. In conclusion, we described the functional conservation among UVR8 proteins from green algae to higher plants. PMID:27895654

  19. Initiation of Sphagnum moss hummocks in bogs and the presence of vascular plants: Is there a link?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pouliot, Rémy; Rochefort, Line; Karofeld, Edgar; Mercier, Caroline

    2011-07-01

    Establishment of specific vascular plants and Sphagnum species, as well as asymmetrical competition and facilitation between the two types of plants are apparently important in the development of microtopography in peatlands. To determine whether peatland vascular plants can facilitate the initiation of Sphagnum hummocks, and consequently the differentiation of bog microtopography, we investigated the effects of vascular plant life form and structure on Sphagnum stem length and biomass. We showed that Sphagnum stem length and biomass were enhanced by low density of vascular plants and other introduced structures, which thus favoured hummock formation. Dense covers of vascular plants also promoted moss height growth, but the Sphagnum stems were etiolated and fluffy, their densities were too low and biomass was too small to initiate clear hummocks. We also showed that vascular plants contributed to microhabitats with stable temperatures and high relative humidity favourable to Sphagnum growth. Stress-gradient hypothesis, predicting that the relative frequencies of facilitation and competition events will vary inversely along abiotic stress gradients, could explain the nature of the interaction between mosses and vascular plants. At the onset of microstructures formation in peatlands, abiotic stress is probably more important and facilitation events could be frequent. Microclimatic effects of vascular plants may be essential for Sphagnum growth. Then, the presence of ericaceous shrubs or young trees enhances the microtopography by physically reinforcing the hummocks. During accentuation of microtopography, the positive interactions between Sphagnum mosses and vascular plants may be replaced by competition as abiotic stress declines. This study introduces new evidence for the role of vascular plants in the formation and maintenance of hummocks, especially under drier growing conditions.

  20. Ab initio calculations of the Fe(II) and Fe(III) isotopic effects in citrates, nicotianamine, and phytosiderophore, and new Fe isotopic measurements in higher plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moynier, Frédéric; Fujii, Toshiyuki; Wang, Kun; Foriel, Julien

    2013-05-01

    Iron is one of the most abundant transition metal in higher plants and variations in its isotopic compositions can be used to trace its utilization. In order to better understand the effect of plant-induced isotopic fractionation on the global Fe cycling, we have estimated by quantum chemical calculations the magnitude of the isotopic fractionation between different Fe species relevant to the transport and storage of Fe in higher plants: Fe(II)-citrate, Fe(III)-citrate, Fe(II)-nicotianamine, and Fe(III)-phytosiderophore. The ab initio calculations show firstly, that Fe(II)-nicotianamine is ˜3‰ (56Fe/54Fe) isotopically lighter than Fe(III)-phytosiderophore; secondly, even in the absence of redox changes of Fe, change in the speciation alone can create up to ˜1.5‰ isotopic fractionation. For example, Fe(III)-phytosiderophore is up to 1.5‰ heavier than Fe(III)-citrate2 and Fe(II)-nicotianamine is up to 1‰ heavier than Fe(II)-citrate. In addition, in order to better understand the Fe isotopic fractionation between different plant components, we have analyzed the iron isotopic composition of different organs (roots, seeds, germinated seeds, leaves and stems) from six species of higher plants: the dicot lentil (Lens culinaris), and the graminaceous monocots Virginia wild rye (Elymus virginicus), Johnsongrass (Sorghum halepense), Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis), river oat (Uniola latifolia), and Indian goosegrass (Eleusine indica). The calculations may explain that the roots of strategy-II plants (Fe(III)-phytosiderophore) are isotopically heavier (by about 1‰ for the δ56Fe) than the upper parts of the plants (Fe transported as Fe(III)-citrate in the xylem or Fe(II)-nicotianamine in the phloem). In addition, we suggest that the isotopic variations observed between younger and older leaves could be explained by mixing of Fe received from the xylem and the phloem.

  1. Few Ant Species Play a Central Role Linking Different Plant Resources in a Network in Rupestrian Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Mello, Marco A. R.; Bronstein, Judith L.; Guerra, Tadeu J.; Muylaert, Renata L.; Leite, Alice C.; Neves, Frederico S.

    2016-01-01

    Ant-plant associations are an outstanding model to study the entangled ecological interactions that structure communities. However, most studies of plant-animal networks focus on only one type of resource that mediates these interactions (e.g, nectar or fruits), leading to a biased understanding of community structure. New approaches, however, have made possible to study several interaction types simultaneously through multilayer networks models. Here, we use this approach to ask whether the structural patterns described to date for ant-plant networks hold when multiple interactions with plant-derived food rewards are considered. We tested whether networks characterized by different resource types differ in specialization and resource partitioning among ants, and whether the identity of the core ant species is similar among resource types. We monitored ant interactions with extrafloral nectaries, flowers, and fruits, as well as trophobiont hemipterans feeding on plants, for one year, in seven rupestrian grassland (campo rupestre) sites in southeastern Brazil. We found a highly tangled ant-plant network in which plants offering different resource types are connected by a few central ant species. The multilayer network had low modularity and specialization, but ant specialization and niche overlap differed according to the type of resource used. Beyond detecting structural differences across networks, our study demonstrates empirically that the core of most central ant species is similar across them. We suggest that foraging strategies of ant species, such as massive recruitment, may determine specialization and resource partitioning in ant-plant interactions. As this core of ant species is involved in multiple ecosystem functions, it may drive the diversity and evolution of the entire campo rupestre community. PMID:27911919

  2. Evaluating the Effects of Illumination Quality on Higher Plant Value in the MARS 500-Day Mission Simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marchant, C. C.; Karetkin, I. G.; Podolsky, I. G.; Bingham, G. E.

    2008-06-01

    Light-emitting diodes (LED) have a number of advantages over other light sources for space horticulture, including greater output efficiency, increased safety, and small size and mass. Much of the previous work with LEDs has ignored their effect on the plants' visible appearances. Part of the MARS 500 experiment at the IBMP in Moscow will be evaluating the plants' psychological value. In that experiment, white LEDs will be compared against fluorescent lighting to determine yield and perception effectiveness. For this study, the suitability of white LEDs for spaceflight is evaluated with respect to both biomass yield as well as plant appearance. In these studies, a variety of plant types have been used, including radish, leaf mustard, dwarf peas, and super-dwarf wheat. An LED bank with white elements is compared against a conventional fluorescent source and an LED bank with 90% red and 10% blue elements. Results showed biomass yield to be comparable for all three sources, but with species-specific reactions to LED lighting. White LEDs can significantly improve illumination efficiency relative to fluorescent lighting, while retaining the psychological value of the plants.

  3. Links between soil microbial communities and plant traits in a species-rich grassland under long-term climate change.

    PubMed

    Sayer, Emma J; Oliver, Anna E; Fridley, Jason D; Askew, Andrew P; Mills, Robert T E; Grime, J Philip

    2017-02-01

    Climate change can influence soil microorganisms directly by altering their growth and activity but also indirectly via effects on the vegetation, which modifies the availability of resources. Direct impacts of climate change on soil microorganisms can occur rapidly, whereas indirect effects mediated by shifts in plant community composition are not immediately apparent and likely to increase over time. We used molecular fingerprinting of bacterial and fungal communities in the soil to investigate the effects of 17 years of temperature and rainfall manipulations in a species-rich grassland near Buxton, UK. We compared shifts in microbial community structure to changes in plant species composition and key plant traits across 78 microsites within plots subjected to winter heating, rainfall supplementation, or summer drought. We observed marked shifts in soil fungal and bacterial community structure in response to chronic summer drought. Importantly, although dominant microbial taxa were largely unaffected by drought, there were substantial changes in the abundances of subordinate fungal and bacterial taxa. In contrast to short-term studies that report high resistance of soil fungi to drought, we observed substantial losses of fungal taxa in the summer drought treatments. There was moderate concordance between soil microbial communities and plant species composition within microsites. Vector fitting of community-weighted mean plant traits to ordinations of soil bacterial and fungal communities showed that shifts in soil microbial community structure were related to plant traits representing the quality of resources available to soil microorganisms: the construction cost of leaf material, foliar carbon-to-nitrogen ratios, and leaf dry matter content. Thus, our study provides evidence that climate change could affect soil microbial communities indirectly via changes in plant inputs and highlights the importance of considering long-term climate change effects, especially

  4. Golgi-Mediated Synthesis and Secretion of Matrix Polysaccharides of the Primary Cell Wall of Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Driouich, Azeddine; Follet-Gueye, Marie-Laure; Bernard, Sophie; Kousar, Sumaira; Chevalier, Laurence; Vicré-Gibouin, Maïté; Lerouxel, Olivier

    2012-01-01

    The Golgi apparatus of eukaryotic cells is known for its central role in the processing, sorting, and transport of proteins to intra- and extra-cellular compartments. In plants, it has the additional task of assembling and exporting the non-cellulosic polysaccharides of the cell wall matrix including pectin and hemicelluloses, which are important for plant development and protection. In this review, we focus on the biosynthesis of complex polysaccharides of the primary cell wall of eudicotyledonous plants. We present and discuss the compartmental organization of the Golgi stacks with regards to complex polysaccharide assembly and secretion using immuno-electron microscopy and specific antibodies recognizing various sugar epitopes. We also discuss the significance of the recently identified Golgi-localized glycosyltransferases responsible for the biosynthesis of xyloglucan (XyG) and pectin. PMID:22639665

  5. Evaluation of the biotic potential of microorganisms and higher plants to enhance the quality of constructed wetlands. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Mays, D.A.; Floyd, M.; Taylor, R.W.; Sistani, K.

    1998-09-30

    A project was carried out from October 1, 1991 through September 30, 1998 to evaluate the growth of several species of wetland plants in constructed cells using mine spoil as a growth medium, to evaluate microbial diversity and finally, to demonstrate the concept on an actual strip-mined site. In order to gain background information for evaluation of constructed wetlands, several wetlands on both undisturbed and strip-mined areas were evaluated to determine the physical and chemical characteristics of the substrates as well as the vegetation characteristics. The research phase of this projects consisted of 10 wetland cells each 7x16 m in size with the water depth varying from 0 to 40 cm. The substrates were allowed to stabilize over winter and each cell was planted in the spring of 1993 with 18 plants each of cattail, maidencance, soft stem bulrush and pickerel weed. All cells were thickly vegetated by the end of the first growing season.

  6. Microgravity effects on different stages of higher plant life cycle and completion of the seed-to-seed cycle.

    PubMed

    De Micco, V; De Pascale, S; Paradiso, R; Aronne, G

    2014-01-01

    Human inhabitation of Space requires the efficient realisation of crop cultivation in bioregenerative life-support systems (BLSS). It is well known that plants can grow under Space conditions; however, perturbations of many biological phenomena have been highlighted due to the effect of altered gravity and its possible interactions with other factors. The mechanisms priming plant responses to Space factors, as well as the consequences of such alterations on crop productivity, have not been completely elucidated. These perturbations can occur at different stages of plant life and are potentially responsible for failure of the completion of the seed-to-seed cycle. After brief consideration of the main constraints found in the most recent experiments aiming to produce seeds in Space, we focus on two developmental phases in which the plant life cycle can be interrupted more easily than in others also on Earth. The first regards seedling development and establishment; we discuss reasons for slow development at the seedling stage that often occurs under microgravity conditions and can reduce successful establishment. The second stage comprises gametogenesis and pollination; we focus on male gamete formation, also identifying potential constraints to subsequent fertilisation. We finally highlight how similar alterations at cytological level can not only be common to different processes occurring at different life stages, but can be primed by different stress factors; such alterations can be interpreted within the model of 'stress-induced morphogenic response' (SIMR). We conclude by suggesting that a systematic analysis of all growth and reproductive phases during the plant life cycle is needed to optimise resource use in plant-based BLSS.

  7. Tomato progeny inherit resistance to the nematode Meloidogyne javanica linked to plant growth induced by the biocontrol fungus Trichoderma atroviride

    PubMed Central

    Medeiros, Hugo Agripino de; Araújo Filho, Jerônimo Vieira de; Freitas, Leandro Grassi de; Castillo, Pablo; Rubio, María Belén; Hermosa, Rosa; Monte, Enrique

    2017-01-01

    Root-knot nematodes (RKN) are major crop pathogens worldwide. Trichoderma genus fungi are recognized biocontrol agents and a direct activity of Trichoderma atroviride (Ta) against the RKN Meloidogyne javanica (Mj), in terms of 42% reduction of number of galls (NG), 60% of number of egg masses and 90% of number of adult nematodes inside the roots, has been observed in tomato grown under greenhouse conditions. An in vivo split-root designed experiment served to demonstrate that Ta induces systemic resistance towards Mj, without the need for the organisms to be in direct contact, and significantly reduces NG (20%) and adult nematodes inside tomato roots (87%). The first generation (F1) of Ta-primed tomato plants inherited resistance to RKN; although, the induction of defenses occurred through different mechanisms, and in varying degrees, depending on the Ta-Mj interaction. Plant growth promotion induced by Ta was inherited without compromising the level of resistance to Mj, as the progeny of Ta-primed plants displayed increased size and resistance to Mj without fitness costs. Gene expression results from the defense inductions in the offspring of Ta-primed plants, suggested that an auxin-induced reactive oxygen species production promoted by Ta may act as a major defense strategy during plant growth. PMID:28071749

  8. Rapid modulation of ultraviolet shielding in plants is influenced by solar ultraviolet radiation and linked to alterations in flavonoids.

    PubMed

    Barnes, Paul W; Tobler, Mark A; Keefover-Ring, Ken; Flint, Stephan D; Barkley, Anne E; Ryel, Ronald J; Lindroth, Richard L

    2016-01-01

    The accumulation of ultraviolet (UV)-absorbing compounds (flavonoids and related phenylpropanoids) and the resultant decrease in epidermal UV transmittance (TUV ) are primary protective mechanisms employed by plants against potentially damaging solar UV radiation and are critical components of the overall acclimation response of plants to changing solar UV environments. Whether plants can adjust this UV sunscreen protection in response to rapid changes in UV, as occurs on a diurnal basis, is largely unexplored. Here, we use a combination of approaches to demonstrate that plants can modulate their UV-screening properties within minutes to hours, and these changes are driven, in part, by UV radiation. For the cultivated species Abelmoschus esculentus, large (30-50%) and reversible changes in TUV occurred on a diurnal basis, and these adjustments were associated with changes in the concentrations of whole-leaf UV-absorbing compounds and several quercetin glycosides. Similar results were found for two other species (Vicia faba and Solanum lycopersicum), but no such changes were detected in Zea mays. These findings reveal a much more dynamic UV-protection mechanism than previously recognized, raise important questions concerning the costs and benefits of UV-protection strategies in plants and have practical implications for employing UV to enhance crop vigor and quality in controlled environments.

  9. Systems Modeling at Multiple Levels of Regulation: Linking Systems and Genetic Networks to Spatially Explicit Plant Populations

    PubMed Central

    Kitchen, James L.; Allaby, Robin G.

    2013-01-01

    Selection and adaptation of individuals to their underlying environments are highly dynamical processes, encompassing interactions between the individual and its seasonally changing environment, synergistic or antagonistic interactions between individuals and interactions amongst the regulatory genes within the individual. Plants are useful organisms to study within systems modeling because their sedentary nature simplifies interactions between individuals and the environment, and many important plant processes such as germination or flowering are dependent on annual cycles which can be disrupted by climate behavior. Sedentism makes plants relevant candidates for spatially explicit modeling that is tied in with dynamical environments. We propose that in order to fully understand the complexities behind plant adaptation, a system that couples aspects from systems biology with population and landscape genetics is required. A suitable system could be represented by spatially explicit individual-based models where the virtual individuals are located within time-variable heterogeneous environments and contain mutable regulatory gene networks. These networks could directly interact with the environment, and should provide a useful approach to studying plant adaptation. PMID:27137364

  10. Linking a Large-Watershed Hydrogeochemical Model to a Wetland Community-Ecosystem Model to Estimate Plant Invasion Risk in the Coastal Great Lakes Region, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Currie, W. S.; Bourgeau-Chavez, L. L.; Elgersma, K. J.; French, N. H. F.; Goldberg, D. E.; Hart, S.; Hyndman, D. W.; Kendall, A. D.; Martin, S. L.; Martina, J. P.

    2014-12-01

    In the Laurentian Great Lakes region of the Upper Midwest, USA, agricultural and urban land uses together with high N deposition are contributing to elevated flows of N in rivers and groundwater to coastal wetlands. The functioning of coastal wetlands, which provide a vital link between land and water, are imperative to maintaining the health of the entire Great Lakes Basin. Elevated N inflows are believed to facilitate the spread of large-stature invasive plants (cattails and Phragmites) that reduce biodiversity and have complex effects on other ecosystem services including wetland N retention and C accretion. We enhanced the ILHM (Integrated Landscape Hydrology Model) to simulate the effects of land use on N flows in streams, rivers, and groundwater throughout the Lower Peninsula of Michigan. We used the hydroperiods and N loading rates simulated by ILHM as inputs to the Mondrian model of wetland community-ecosystem processes to estimate invasion risk and other ecosystem services in coastal wetlands around the Michigan coast. Our linked models produced threshold behavior in the success of invasive plants in response to N loading, with the threshold ranging from ca. 8 to 12 g N/m2 y, depending on hydroperiod. Plant invasions increased wetland productivity 3-fold over historically oligotrophic native communities, decreased biodiversity but slightly increased wetland N retention. Regardless of invasion, elevated N loading resulted in significantly enhanced rates of C accretion, providing an important region-wide mechanism of C storage. The linked models predicted a general pattern of greater invasion risk in the southern basins of lakes Michigan and Huron relative to northern areas. The basic mechanisms of invasion have been partially validated in our field mesocosms constructed for this project. The general regional patterns of increased invasion risk have been validated through our field campaigns and remote sensing conducted for this project.

  11. Perturbation of the ubiquitin system causes leaf curling, vascular tissue alterations and necrotic lesions in a higher plant.

    PubMed Central

    Bachmair, A; Becker, F; Masterson, R V; Schell, J

    1990-01-01

    A ubiquitin variant with Lys48 changed to Arg acts in vitro as an inhibitor of ubiquitin dependent protein degradation. To assess the role of this proteolytic pathway in the life cycle of plants, we expressed the ubiquitin variant in Nicotiana tabacum. Expression of variant mono- or polyubiquitin leads to marked abnormalities in vascular tissue. In addition, overexpression of variant polyubiquitin induces discrete lesions on leaves. This indicates that perturbations of the ubiquitin system can induce a programmed necrotic response in plants. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4. Fig. 5. PMID:2176155

  12. A controlled aquatic ecological life support system (CAELSS) for combined production of fish and higher plant biomass suitable for integration into a lunar or planetary base.

    PubMed

    Blum, V; Andriske, M; Eichhorn, H; Kreuzberg, K; Schreibman, M P

    1995-10-01

    Based on the construction principle of the already operative Closed Equilibrated Biological Aquatic System (C.E.B.A.S.) the concept of an aquaculture system for combined production of animal and plant biomass was developed. It consists of a tank for intensive fish culture which is equipped with a feeding lock representing also a trap for biomass removal followed by a water recycling system. This is an optimized version of the original C.E.B.A.S. filters adapted to higher water pollutions. It operates in a fully biological mode and is able to convert the high ammonia ion concentrations excreted by the fish gills into nitrite ions. The second biomass production site is a higher plant cultivator with an internal fiber optics light distributor which may utilize of solar energy. The selected water plant is a tropical rootless duckweed of the genus Wolffia which possesses a high capacity in nitrate elimination and is terrestrially cultured as a vegetable for human nutrition in Southeast Asia. It is produced in an improved suspension culture which allows the removal of excess biomass by tangential centrifugation. The plant cultivator is able to supply the whole system with oxygen for respiration and eliminates vice versa the carbon dioxide exhaled by the fish via photosynthesis. A gas exchanger may be used for emergency purposes or to deliver excess oxygen into the environment and may be implemented into the air regeneration system of a closed environment of higher order. The plant biomass is fed into a biomass processor which delivers condensed fresh and dried biomass as pellets. The recovered water is fed back into the aquaculture loop. The fresh plants can be used for human nutrition immediately or can be stored after sterilization in an adequate packing. The dried Wolffia pellets are collected and brought into the fish tank by an automated feeder. In parallel the water from the plant cultivator is driven back to the animal tank by a pump. The special feature of the

  13. Advances in biotechnology and linking outputs to variation in complex traits: Plant and Animal Genome meeting January 2012.

    PubMed

    Appels, R; Barrero, R; Bellgard, M

    2012-03-01

    The Plant and Animal Genome (PAG, held annually) meeting in January 2012 provided insights into the advances in plant, animal, and microbe genome studies particularly as they impact on our understanding of complex biological systems. The diverse areas of biology covered included the advances in technologies, variation in complex traits, genome change in evolution, and targeting phenotypic changes, across the broad spectrum of life forms. This overview aims to summarize the major advances in research areas presented in the plenary lectures and does not attempt to summarize the diverse research activities covered throughout the PAG in workshops, posters, presentations, and displays by suppliers of cutting-edge technologies.

  14. How endogenous plant cell-wall degradation mechanisms can help achieve higher efficiency in saccharification of biomass.

    PubMed

    Tavares, Eveline Q P; De Souza, Amanda P; Buckeridge, Marcos S

    2015-07-01

    Cell-wall recalcitrance to hydrolysis still represents one of the major bottlenecks for second-generation bioethanol production. This occurs despite the development of pre-treatments, the prospect of new enzymes, and the production of transgenic plants with less-recalcitrant cell walls. Recalcitrance, which is the intrinsic resistance to breakdown imposed by polymer assembly, is the result of inherent limitations in its three domains. These consist of: (i) porosity, associated with a pectin matrix impairing trafficking through the wall; (ii) the glycomic code, which refers to the fine-structural emergent complexity of cell-wall polymers that are unique to cells, tissues, and species; and (iii) cellulose crystallinity, which refers to the organization in micro- and/or macrofibrils. One way to circumvent recalcitrance could be by following cell-wall hydrolysis strategies underlying plant endogenous mechanisms that are optimized to precisely modify cell walls in planta. Thus, the cell-wall degradation that occurs during fruit ripening, abscission, storage cell-wall mobilization, and aerenchyma formation are reviewed in order to highlight how plants deal with recalcitrance and which are the routes to couple prospective enzymes and cocktail designs with cell-wall features. The manipulation of key enzyme levels in planta can help achieving biologically pre-treated walls (i.e. less recalcitrant) before plants are harvested for bioethanol production. This may be helpful in decreasing the costs associated with producing bioethanol from biomass.

  15. Polyamines and cellular metabolism in plants: Transgenic approaches reveal different responses to diamine putrescine versus higher polyamines spermidine and spermine

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Distribution of biogenic amines – the diamine putrescine (Put), triamine spermidine (Spd), and tetraamine spermine (Spm) - differs between species with Put and Spd being particularly abundant and Spm the least abundant in plant cells. These amines are important for cell viability and their intracel...

  16. Expansion Mechanisms and Functional Divergence of the Glutathione S-Transferase Family in Sorghum and Other Higher Plants

    PubMed Central

    Chi, Yunhua; Cheng, Yansong; Vanitha, Jeevanandam; Kumar, Nadimuthu; Ramamoorthy, Rengasamy; Ramachandran, Srinivasan; Jiang, Shu-Ye

    2011-01-01

    Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) exist in various eukaryotes and function in detoxification of xenobiotics and in response to abiotic and biotic stresses. We have carried out a genome-wide survey of this gene family in 10 plant genomes. Our data show that tandem duplication has been regarded as the major expansion mechanism and both monocot and dicot plants may have practiced different expansion and evolutionary history. Non-synonymous substitutions per site (Ka) and synonymous substitutions per site (Ks) analyses showed that N- and C-terminal functional domains of GSTs (GST_N and GST_C) seem to have evolved under a strong purifying selection (Ka/Ks < 1) under different selective pressures. Differential evolutionary rates between GST_N and GST_C and high degree of expression divergence have been regarded as the major drivers for the retention of duplicated genes and the adaptability to various stresses. Expression profiling also indicated that the gene family plays a role not only in stress-related biological processes but also in the sugar-signalling pathway. Our survey provides additional annotation of the plant GST gene family and advance the understanding of plant GSTs in lineage-specific expansion and species diversification. PMID:21169340

  17. Development of a simple PCR-based assay for the identification of triazine resistance in the noxious plant common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia) and its applicability in higher plants.

    PubMed

    Mátyás, Kinga Klára; Taller, János; Cseh, András; Poczai, Péter; Cernák, István

    2011-12-01

    Bidirectional allele-specific PCR (Bi-PASA) was used to detect a point mutation causing triazine resistance in common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia). The external primers amplified a 278 bp standard DNA fragment in all genotypes. In the susceptible S264S genotypes, a 208 bp fragment was expected while in resistant S264G common ragweed genotypes a 109 bp band was expected. In resistant plants, both the wild and mutant type fragments were detected, indicating that the original triazine sensitive cpDNA is maintained in a heteroplasmic state in the resistant S264G genotypes. Additionally, in silico analysis confirmed the potential applicability of our diagnostic assay for other plant species. In 24 out of 74 taxa (32%), the assay could be used without any change, while in the others some of the primers should be redesigned before use.

  18. Genetics of a sex-linked recessive red eye color mutant of the tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    An inbred colony of the tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois) (Miridae: Hemiptera), was observed to contain specimens with abnormal traits including red eyes, deformed antennae, and deformed legs. These specimens were isolated and back crossed to create stable phenotypic strain...

  19. Microorganism and filamentous fungi drive evolution of plant synapses

    PubMed Central

    Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    In the course of plant evolution, there is an obvious trend toward an increased complexity of plant bodies, as well as an increased sophistication of plant behavior and communication. Phenotypic plasticity of plants is based on the polar auxin transport machinery that is directly linked with plant sensory systems impinging on plant behavior and adaptive responses. Similar to the emergence and evolution of eukaryotic cells, evolution of land plants was also shaped and driven by infective and symbiotic microorganisms. These microorganisms are the driving force behind the evolution of plant synapses and other neuronal aspects of higher plants; this is especially pronounced in the root apices. Plant synapses allow synaptic cell–cell communication and coordination in plants, as well as sensory-motor integration in root apices searching for water and mineral nutrition. These neuronal aspects of higher plants are closely linked with their unique ability to adapt to environmental changes. PMID:23967407

  20. Microorganism and filamentous fungi drive evolution of plant synapses.

    PubMed

    Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    In the course of plant evolution, there is an obvious trend toward an increased complexity of plant bodies, as well as an increased sophistication of plant behavior and communication. Phenotypic plasticity of plants is based on the polar auxin transport machinery that is directly linked with plant sensory systems impinging on plant behavior and adaptive responses. Similar to the emergence and evolution of eukaryotic cells, evolution of land plants was also shaped and driven by infective and symbiotic microorganisms. These microorganisms are the driving force behind the evolution of plant synapses and other neuronal aspects of higher plants; this is especially pronounced in the root apices. Plant synapses allow synaptic cell-cell communication and coordination in plants, as well as sensory-motor integration in root apices searching for water and mineral nutrition. These neuronal aspects of higher plants are closely linked with their unique ability to adapt to environmental changes.

  1. Taking the Roundtable to the Next Level. The Roundtable on Higher Education: Linking North Dakota and Its University System. Meeting Highlights

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Dakota University System, 2004

    2004-01-01

    This document presents highlights from the June 15, 2004, Roundtable on Higher Education meeting kick-off. Citing the need to reach consensus about how to take the Roundtable on Higher Education to the next level, Senator Ray Holmberg, roundtable chairman, said the roundtable has reinvigorated North Dakota University System (NDUS) campuses and…

  2. Pseudomonas fluorescens Transportome Is Linked to Strain-Specific Plant Growth Promotion in Aspen Seedlings under Nutrient Stress

    PubMed Central

    Shinde, Shalaka; Cumming, Jonathan R.; Collart, Frank R.; Noirot, Philippe H.; Larsen, Peter E.

    2017-01-01

    Diverse communities of bacteria colonize plant roots and the rhizosphere. Many of these rhizobacteria are symbionts and provide plant growth promotion (PGP) services, protecting the plant from biotic and abiotic stresses and increasing plant productivity by providing access to nutrients that would otherwise be unavailable to roots. In return, these symbiotic bacteria receive photosynthetically-derived carbon (C), in the form of sugars and organic acids, from plant root exudates. PGP activities have been characterized for a variety of forest tree species and are important in C cycling and sequestration in terrestrial ecosystems. The molecular mechanisms of these PGP activities, however, are less well-known. In a previous analysis of Pseudomonas genomes, we found that the bacterial transportome, the aggregate activity of a bacteria's transmembrane transporters, was most predictive for the ecological niche of Pseudomonads in the rhizosphere. Here, we used Populus tremuloides Michx. (trembling aspen) seedlings inoculated with one of three Pseudomonas fluorescens strains (Pf0-1, SBW25, and WH6) and one Pseudomonas protegens (Pf-5) as a laboratory model to further investigate the relationships between the predicted transportomic capacity of a bacterial strain and its observed PGP effects in laboratory cultures. Conditions of low nitrogen (N) or low phosphorus (P) availability and the corresponding replete media conditions were investigated. We measured phenotypic and biochemical parameters of P. tremuloides seedlings and correlated P. fluorescens strain-specific transportomic capacities with P. tremuloides seedling phenotype to predict the strain and nutrient environment-specific transporter functions that lead to experimentally observed, strain, and media-specific PGP activities and the capacity to protect plants against nutrient stress. These predicted transportomic functions fall in three groups: (i) transport of compounds that modulate aspen seedling root

  3. Two cytochrome P-450 isoforms catalysing O-de-ethylation of ethoxycoumarin and ethoxyresorufin in higher plants.

    PubMed Central

    Werck-Reichhart, D; Gabriac, B; Teutsch, H; Durst, F

    1990-01-01

    The O-dealkylating activities of 7-ethoxycoumarin O-de-ethylase (ECOD) and 7-ethoxyresorufin O-de-ethylase (EROD) have been fluorimetrically detected in microsomes prepared from manganese-induced Jerusalem artichoke tubers. Cytochrome P-450 dependence of the reactions was demonstrated by light-reversed CO inhibition, NADPH-dependence, NADH-NADPH synergism and by use of specific inhibitors: antibodies to NADPH-cytochrome P-450 reductase, mechanism-based inactivators and tetcyclasis. Apparent Km values of 161 microM for 7-ethoxycoumarin and 0.4 microM for 7-ethoxyresorufin were determined. O-De-ethylase activity was also detected in microsomes prepared from several other plant species, including wheat, maize, tulip, avocado and Vicia. ECOD and EROD were low or undetectable in uninduced plant tissues, and both activities were stimulated by wounding or by chemical inducers. Two distinct cytochrome P-450 isoforms are involved in ECOD and EROD activities since (1) they showed different distributions among plant species; (2) they showed contrasting inhibition and induction patterns; and (3) ECOD but not EROD activity was supported by cumene hydroperoxide. PMID:2241905

  4. Microinjected fluorescent phalloidin in vivo reveals the F-actin dynamics and assembly in higher plant mitotic cells.

    PubMed Central

    Schmit, A C; Lambert, A M

    1990-01-01

    Endosperm mitotic cells microinjected with fluorescent phalloidin enabled us to follow the in vivo dynamics of the F-actin cytoskeleton. The fluorescent probe immediately bound to plant microfilaments. First, we investigated the active rearrangement of F-actin during chromosome migration, which appeared to be slowed down in the presence of phalloidin. These findings were compared with the actin patterns observed in mitotic cells fixed at different stages. Our second aim was to determine the origin of the actin filaments that appear at the equator during anaphase-telophase transition. It is not clear whether this F-actin is newly assembled at the end of mitosis and could control plant cytokinesis or whether it corresponds to a passive redistribution of broken polymers in response to microtubule dynamics. We microinjected the same cells twice, first in metaphase with rhodamine-phalloidin and then in late anaphase with fluorescein isothiocyanate-phalloidin. This technique enabled us to visualize two F-actin populations that are not co-localized, suggesting that actin is newly assembled during cell plate development. These in vivo data shed new light on the role of actin in plant mitosis and cytokinesis. PMID:2136631

  5. An Ancient P-Loop GTPase in Rice Is Regulated by a Higher Plant-specific Regulatory Protein*

    PubMed Central

    Cheung, Ming-Yan; Xue, Yan; Zhou, Liang; Li, Man-Wah; Sun, Samuel Sai-Ming; Lam, Hon-Ming

    2010-01-01

    YchF is a subfamily of the Obg family in the TRAFAC class of P-loop GTPases. The wide distribution of YchF homologues in both eukarya and bacteria suggests that they are descendents of an ancient protein, yet their physiological roles remain unclear. Using the OsYchF1-OsGAP1 pair from rice as the prototype, we provide evidence for the regulation of GTPase/ATPase activities and RNA binding capacity of a plant YchF (OsYchF1) by its regulatory protein (OsGAP1). The effects of OsGAP1 on the subcellular localization/cycling and physiological functions of OsYchF1 are also discussed. The finding that OsYchF1 and OsGAP1 are involved in plant defense response might shed light on the functional roles of YchF homologues in plants. This work suggests that during evolution, an ancestral P-loop GTPase/ATPase may acquire new regulation and function(s) by the evolution of a lineage-specific regulatory protein. PMID:20876569

  6. Evaluation of higher plant virus resistance genes in the green alga, Chlorella variabilis NC64A, during the early phase of infection with Paramecium bursaria chlorella virus-1

    PubMed Central

    Rowe, Janet M.; Dunigan, David D.; Blanc, Guillaume; Gurnon, James R.; Xia, Yuannan; Van Etten, James L.

    2014-01-01

    With growing industrial interest in algae plus their critical roles in aquatic systems, the need to understand the effects of algal pathogens is increasing. We examined a model algal host–virus system, Chlorella variabilis NC64A and virus, PBCV-1. C. variabilis encodes 375 homologs to genes involved in RNA silencing and in response to virus infection in higher plants. Illumina RNA-Seq data showed that 325 of these homologs were expressed in healthy and early PBCV-1 infected (≤60 min) cells. For each of the RNA silencing genes to which homologs were found, mRNA transcripts were detected in healthy and infected cells. C. variabilis, like higher plants, may employ certain RNA silencing pathways to defend itself against virus infection. To our knowledge this is the first examination of RNA silencing genes in algae beyond core proteins, and the first analysis of their transcription during virus infection. PMID:23701839

  7. Requirements of blue, UV-A, and UV-B light for normal growth of higher plants, as assessed by action spectra for growth and related phenomena

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hashimoto, T.

    1994-01-01

    Artificial lighting is very important for experimental purposes, as well as for the practical use of plants when not enough sunlight is available. To grow green higher plants in their normal forms under artificial lighting constructing efficient and economically reasonable lighting systems is not an easy task. One possible approach would be to simulate sunlight in intensity and the radiation spectrum, but its high construction and running costs are not likely to allow its use in practice. Sunlight may be excessive in irradiance in some or all portions of the spectrum. Reducing irradiance and removing unnecessary wavebands might lead to an economically feasible light source. However, removing or reducing a particular waveband from sunlight for testing is not easy. Another approach might be to find the wavebands required for respective aspects of plant growth and to combine them in a proper ratio and intensity. The latter approach seems more practical and economical, and the aim of this Workshop lies in advancing this approach. I summarize our present knowledge on the waveband requirements of higher plants for the regions of blue, UV-A and UV-B.

  8. Carbon dioxide and the stomatal control of water balance and photosynthesis in higher plants. Progress report, July 1, 1990--June 30, 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-07-01

    Research continued into the investigation of the effects of carbon dioxide on stomatal control of water balance and photosynthesis in higher plants. Topics discussed this period include a method of isolating a sufficient number of guard cell chloroplasts for biochemical studies by mechanical isolation of epidermal peels; the measurement of stomatal apertures with a digital image analysis system; development of a high performance liquid chromatography method for quantification of metabolites in guard cells; and genetic control of stomatal movements in Pima cotton. (CBS)

  9. Inhibitory potential of some Romanian medicinal plants against enzymes linked to neurodegenerative diseases and their antioxidant activity

    PubMed Central

    Paun, Gabriela; Neagu, Elena; Albu, Camelia; Radu, Gabriel Lucian

    2015-01-01

    Context: Eryngium planum, Geum urbanum and Cnicus benedictus plants are an endemic botanical from the Romanian used in folk medicine. Objective: The extracts from three Romanian medicinal plants were investigated for their possible neuroprotective potential. Materials and Methods: Within this study, in vitro neuroprotective activity of the extracts of E. planum, G. urbanum, and C. benedictus plants were investigated via inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and tyrosinase (TYR). Total content of phenolics, flavonoids, and proanthocyanidins, high-performance liquid chromatography profile of the main phenolic compounds and antioxidant activity were also determined. Results: Among the tested extracts, the best inhibition of AChE (88.76 ± 5.2%) and TYR (88.5 ± 5.2%) was caused by C. benedictus ethanol (EtOH) extract. The G. urbanum extracts exerted remarkable scavenging effect against 2, 2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (IC50, 7.8 ± 0.5 μg/mL aqueous extract, and IC50, 1.3 ± 0.1 μg/mL EtOH extract, respectively) and reducing power, whereas the EtOH extract of C. benedictus showed high scavenging activity (IC50, 0.609 ± 0.04 mg/mL), also. Conclusion: According to our knowledge, this is the first study that demonstrates in vitro neuroprotective effects of E. planum, G. urbanum and C. benedictus. PMID:26109755

  10. The pore size of non-graminaceous plant cell walls is rapidly decreased by borate ester cross-linking of the pectic polysaccharide rhamnogalacturonan II

    SciTech Connect

    Fleischer, A.; O'Neill, M.A.; Ehwald, R.

    1999-11-01

    The walls of suspension-cultured Chenopodium album L. cells grown continually for more than 1 year on B-deficient medium contained monomeric rhamnogalacturonan (mRG-II) but not the borate ester cross-linked RG II dimer (dRG-II-B). The walls of these cells had an increased size limit for dextran permeation, which is a measure of wall pore size. Adding boric acid to growing B-deficient cells resulted in B binding to the wall, the formation of dRG-II-B from mRG-II, and a reduction in wall pore size within 10 min. The wall pore size of denatured B-grown cells was increased by treatment at pH {le} 2.0 or by treatment with Ca{sup 2+}-chelating agents. The acid-mediated increase in wall pore size was prevented by boric acid alone at pH 2.0 and by boric acid together with Ca{sup 2+}, but not by Na{sup +} or Mg{sup 2+} ions at pH 1.5. The Ca{sup 2+}-chelator-mediated increase in pore size was partially reduced by boric acid. Their results suggest that B-mediated cross-linking of RG-II in the walls of living plant cells generates a pectin network with a decreased size exclusion limit for polymers. The formation, stability, and possible functions of a borate ester cross-linked pectic network in the primary walls of nongraminaceous plant cells are discussed.

  11. Isolation of a mutant Arabidopsis plant that lacks N-aetyl glucosaminyl transferase I and is unable to synthesize Golgi-modified complex N-linked glycans

    SciTech Connect

    Schaewen, A. von; O'Neill, J.; Chrispeels, M.J. ); Sturm, A. )

    1993-08-01

    The complex asparagine-linked glycans of plant glycoproteins, characterized by the presence of [beta]1[yields]2 xylose and [alpha]1[yields]3 fucose residues, are derived from typical mannose[sub 9](N-acetylglucosamine)[sub 2] (Man[sub 9]GlcNAc[sub 2]) N-linked glycans through the activity of a series of glycosidases and glycosyl transferases in the Golgi apparatus. By screening leaf extracts with an antiserum against complex glycans, we isolated a mutant of Arbidopsis thaliana that is blocked in the conversion of high-manne to complex glycans. In callus tissues derived from the mutant plants, all glycans bind to concanavalin A. These glycans can be released by treatment with endoglycosidase H, and the majority has the same size as Man[sub 5]GlcNAc[sub 1] glycans. In the presence of deoxymannojirimycin, an inhibitor of mannosidase I, the mutant cells synthesize Man[sub 9]GlcNAc[sub 2] and Man[sub 8]GlcNAc[sub 2] glycans, suggesting that the biochemical lesion in the mutant is not in the biosynthesis of high-mannose glycans in the endoplasmic reticulum but in their modification in the Golgi. Direct enzyme assays of cell extracts show that the mutant cells lack N-acetyl glucosaminyl transferase I, the first enzyme in the pathway of complex glycan biosynthesis. The mutant plants are able to complete their development normally under several environmental conditions, suggesting that complex glycans are not essential for normal developmental processes. By crossing the complex-glycan-deficient strain of A. thaliana with a transgenic strain that expresses the glycoprotein phytohemagglutinin, a unique strain was obtained that synthesizes phytohemagglutinin with two high-mannose glycans, instead of one high-mannose and one complex glycan. 42 refs., 8 figs., 1 tab.

  12. Attempts to Detect Cyclic Adenosine 3′:5′-Monophosphate in Higher Plants by Three Assay Methods 12

    PubMed Central

    Bressan, Ray A.; Ross, Cleon W.; Vandepeute, Jozef

    1976-01-01

    Endogenous levels of cyclic adenosine-3′:5′-monophosphate in coleoptile first leaf segments of oat (Avena sativa L.), potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) tubers, tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) callus, and germinating seeds of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) were measured with a modified Gilman binding assay and a protein kinase activation assay. The incorporation of adenosine-8-14C into compounds with properties similar to those of cyclic AMP was also measured in studies with germinating lettuce seeds. The binding assay proved reliable for mouse and rat liver analyses, but was nonspecific for plant tissues. It responded to various components from lettuce and potato tissues chromatographically similar to but not identical with cyclic AMP. The protein kinase activation assay was much more specific, but it also exhibited positive responses in the presence of compounds not chromatographically identical to cyclic AMP. The concentrations of cyclic AMP in the plant tissues tested were at the lower limits of detection and characterization obtainable with these assays. The estimates of maximal levels were much lower than reported in many previous studies. PMID:16659419

  13. Stable Accumulation of Modified 2S Albumin Seed Storage Proteins with Higher Methionine Contents in Transgenic Plants 1

    PubMed Central

    De Clercq, Ann; Vandewiele, Martine; Van Damme, Jozef; Guerche, Philippe; Van Montagu, Marc; Vandekerckhove, Joël; Krebbers, Enno

    1990-01-01

    We present the results of two sets of experiments designed to express high methionine proteins in transgenic seeds in three different plant species. In the first approach, two chimeric genes were constructed in which parts of the Arabidopsis 2S albumin gene 1 (AT2S1) were fused at different positions to a Brazil nut 2S albumin cDNA clone. Brazil nut 2S albumin was found to accumulate stably in transgenic Arabidopsis, Brassica napus, and tobacco seeds. In the second approach, methionine-enriched AT2S1 genes were constructed by deleting sequences encoding a region of the protein which is not highly conserved among 2S albumins of different species and replacing them with methioninerich sequences. Introduction of the modified AT2S1 genes into three different plant species resulted in the accumulation of the methionine-enriched 2S albumins in all three species at levels reaching 1 to 2% of the total high salt-extractable seed protein. Images Figure 3 Figure 4 PMID:16667878

  14. A higher plant mitochondrial homologue of the yeast m-AAA protease. Molecular cloning, localization, and putative function.

    PubMed

    Kolodziejczak, Marta; Kolaczkowska, Anna; Szczesny, Bartosz; Urantowka, Adam; Knorpp, Carina; Kieleczawa, Jan; Janska, Hanna

    2002-11-15

    Mitochondrial AAA metalloproteases play a fundamental role in mitochondrial biogenesis and function. They have been identified in yeast and animals but not yet in plants. This work describes the isolation and sequence analysis of the full-length cDNA from the pea (Pisum sativum) with significant homology to the yeast matrix AAA (m-AAA) protease. The product of this clone was imported into isolated pea mitochondria where it was processed to its mature form (PsFtsH). We have shown that the central region of PsFtsH containing the chaperone domain is exposed to the matrix space. Furthermore, we have demonstrated that the pea protease can complement respiration deficiency in the yta10 and/or yta12 null yeast mutants, indicating that the plant protein can compensate for the loss of at least some of the important m-AAA functions in yeast. Based on biochemical experiments using isolated pea mitochondria, we propose that PsFtsH-like m-AAA is involved in the accumulation of the subunit 9 of the ATP synthase in the mitochondrial membrane.

  15. Consumption Frequency of Foods Away from Home Linked with Higher Body Mass Index and Lower Fruit and Vegetable Intake among Adults: A Cross-Sectional Study

    PubMed Central

    Seguin, Rebecca A.; Aggarwal, Anju; Vermeylen, Francoise; Drewnowski, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Introduction. Consumption of foods prepared away from home (FAFH) has grown steadily since the 1970s. We examined the relationship between FAFH and body mass index (BMI) and fruit and vegetable (FV) consumption. Methods. Frequency of FAFH, daily FV intake, height and weight, and sociodemographic data were collected using a telephone survey in 2008-2009. Participants included a representative sample of 2,001 adult men and women (mean age 54 ± 15 years) residing in King County, WA, with an analytical sample of 1,570. Frequency of FAFH was categorized as 0-1, 2–4, or 5+ times per week. BMI was calculated from self-reported height and weight. We examined the relationship between FAFH with FV consumption and BMI using multivariate models. Results. Higher frequency of FAFH was associated with higher BMI, after adjusting for age, income, education, race, smoking, marital status, and physical activity (women: p = 0.001; men: p = 0.003). There was a negative association between frequency of FAFH and FV consumption. FAFH frequency was significantly (p < 0.001) higher among males than females (43.1% versus 54.0% eating out 0-1 meal per week, resp.). Females reported eating significantly (p < 0.001) more FV than males. Conclusion. Among adults, higher frequency of FAFH was related to higher BMI and less FV consumption. PMID:26925111

  16. Mechanisms to Detoxify Selected Organic Contaminants in Higher Plants and Microbes, and Their Potential Use in Landscape Management

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-10-01

    Phanerochaete chrisosporium Phanerochaete sordida Phellinus werii Polyporus versicolor Pleurotus ostreatus This strain degrades ~50% DDT in 30 days... substrate , was also identified in potato cells (Edwards and Owen, 1989). Conjugation with glutathione is characteristic of chloroacetamide herbicides (Le...xenobiotic conjugation with glutathione, had a three times higher activity when alachlor was used as a substrate than with metolachlor (O’Connel et al

  17. Missing links in understanding redox signaling via thiol/disulfide modulation: how is glutathione oxidized in plants?

    PubMed Central

    Rahantaniaina, Marie-Sylviane; Tuzet, Andrée; Mhamdi, Amna; Noctor, Graham

    2013-01-01

    Glutathione is a small redox-active molecule existing in two main stable forms: the thiol (GSH) and the disulphide (GSSG). In plants growing in optimal conditions, the GSH:GSSG ratio is high in most cell compartments. Challenging environmental conditions are known to alter this ratio, notably by inducing the accumulation of GSSG, an effect that may be influential in the perception or transduction of stress signals. Despite the potential importance of glutathione status in redox signaling, the reactions responsible for the oxidation of GSH to GSSG have not been clearly identified. Most attention has focused on the ascorbate-glutathione pathway, but several other candidate pathways may couple the availability of oxidants such as H2O2 to changes in glutathione and thus impact on signaling pathways through regulation of protein thiol-disulfide status. We provide an overview of the main candidate pathways and discuss the available biochemical, transcriptomic, and genetic evidence relating to each. Our analysis emphasizes how much is still to be elucidated on this question, which is likely important for a full understanding of how stress-related redox regulation might impinge on phytohormone-related and other signaling pathways in plants. PMID:24324478

  18. Diacylglycerol Kinases Are Widespread in Higher Plants and Display Inducible Gene Expression in Response to Beneficial Elements, Metal, and Metalloid Ions.

    PubMed

    Escobar-Sepúlveda, Hugo F; Trejo-Téllez, Libia I; Pérez-Rodríguez, Paulino; Hidalgo-Contreras, Juan V; Gómez-Merino, Fernando C

    2017-01-01

    Diacylglycerol kinases (DGKs) are pivotal signaling enzymes that phosphorylate diacylglycerol (DAG) to yield phosphatidic acid (PA). The biosynthesis of PA from phospholipase D (PLD) and the coupled phospholipase C (PLC)/DGK route is a crucial signaling process in eukaryotic cells. Next to PLD, the PLC/DGK pathway is the second most important generator of PA in response to biotic and abiotic stresses. In eukaryotic cells, DGK, DAG, and PA are implicated in vital processes such as growth, development, and responses to environmental cues. A plethora of DGK isoforms have been identified so far, making this a rather large family of enzymes in plants. Herein we performed a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of DGK isoforms in model and crop plants in order to gain insight into the evolution of higher plant DGKs. Furthermore, we explored the expression profiling data available in public data bases concerning the regulation of plant DGK genes in response to beneficial elements and other metal and metalloid ions, including silver (Ag), aluminum (Al), arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), mercury (Hg), and sodium (Na). In all plant genomes explored, we were able to find DGK representatives, though in different numbers. The phylogenetic analysis revealed that these enzymes fall into three major clusters, whose distribution depends on the composition of structural domains. The catalytic domain conserves the consensus sequence GXGXXG/A where ATP binds. The expression profiling data demonstrated that DGK genes are rapidly but transiently regulated in response to certain concentrations and time exposures of beneficial elements and other ions in different plant tissues analyzed, suggesting that DGKs may mediate signals triggered by these elements. Though this evidence is conclusive, further signaling cascades that such elements may stimulate during hormesis, involving the phosphoinositide signaling pathway and DGK genes and enzymes, remain to be elucidated.

  19. Diacylglycerol Kinases Are Widespread in Higher Plants and Display Inducible Gene Expression in Response to Beneficial Elements, Metal, and Metalloid Ions

    PubMed Central

    Escobar-Sepúlveda, Hugo F.; Trejo-Téllez, Libia I.; Pérez-Rodríguez, Paulino; Hidalgo-Contreras, Juan V.; Gómez-Merino, Fernando C.

    2017-01-01

    Diacylglycerol kinases (DGKs) are pivotal signaling enzymes that phosphorylate diacylglycerol (DAG) to yield phosphatidic acid (PA). The biosynthesis of PA from phospholipase D (PLD) and the coupled phospholipase C (PLC)/DGK route is a crucial signaling process in eukaryotic cells. Next to PLD, the PLC/DGK pathway is the second most important generator of PA in response to biotic and abiotic stresses. In eukaryotic cells, DGK, DAG, and PA are implicated in vital processes such as growth, development, and responses to environmental cues. A plethora of DGK isoforms have been identified so far, making this a rather large family of enzymes in plants. Herein we performed a comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of DGK isoforms in model and crop plants in order to gain insight into the evolution of higher plant DGKs. Furthermore, we explored the expression profiling data available in public data bases concerning the regulation of plant DGK genes in response to beneficial elements and other metal and metalloid ions, including silver (Ag), aluminum (Al), arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), mercury (Hg), and sodium (Na). In all plant genomes explored, we were able to find DGK representatives, though in different numbers. The phylogenetic analysis revealed that these enzymes fall into three major clusters, whose distribution depends on the composition of structural domains. The catalytic domain conserves the consensus sequence GXGXXG/A where ATP binds. The expression profiling data demonstrated that DGK genes are rapidly but transiently regulated in response to certain concentrations and time exposures of beneficial elements and other ions in different plant tissues analyzed, suggesting that DGKs may mediate signals triggered by these elements. Though this evidence is conclusive, further signaling cascades that such elements may stimulate during hormesis, involving the phosphoinositide signaling pathway and DGK genes and enzymes, remain to be elucidated. PMID:28223993

  20. Generation of poly-β-hydroxybutyrate from acetate in higher plants: Detection of acetoacetyl CoA reductase- and PHB synthase- activities in rice.

    PubMed

    Tsuda, Hirohisa; Shiraki, Mari; Inoue, Eri; Saito, Terumi

    2016-08-20

    It has been reported that Poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) is generated from acetate in the rice root. However, no information is available about the biosynthetic pathway of PHB from acetate in plant cells. In the bacterium Ralstonia eutropha H16 (R. eutropha), PHB is synthesized from acetyl CoA by the consecutive reaction of three enzymes: β-ketothiolase (EC: 2.3.1.9), acetoacetyl CoA reductase (EC: 1.1.1.36) and PHB synthase (EC: 2.3.1.-). Thus, in this study, we examined whether the above three enzymatic activities were also detected in rice seedlings. The results clearly showed that the activities of the above three enzymes were all detected in rice. In particular, the PHB synthase activity was detected specifically in the sonicated particulate fractions (2000g 10min precipitate (ppt) and the 8000g 30min ppt) of rice roots and leaves. In addition to these enzyme activities, several new experimental results were obtained on PHB synthesis in higher plants: (a) (14)C-PHB generated from 2-(14)C-acetate was mainly localized in the 2000g 10min ppt and the 8000g 30min ppt of rice root. (b) Addition of acetate (0.1-10mM) to culture medium of rice seedlings did not increase the content of PHB in the rice root or leaf. (c) In addition to C3 plants, PHB was generated from acetate in a C4 plant (corn) and in a CAM plant (Bryophyllum pinnatum). d) Washing with ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) strongly suggested that the PHB synthesized from acetate was of plant origin and was not bacterial contamination.

  1. Torrefaction of invasive alien plants: Influence of heating rate and other conversion parameters on mass yield and higher heating value.

    PubMed

    Mundike, Jhonnah; Collard, François-Xavier; Görgens, Johann F

    2016-06-01

    With the aim of controlling their proliferation, two invasive alien plants, Lantana camara (LC) and Mimosa pigra (MP), both widespread in Africa, were considered for torrefaction for renewable energy applications. Using thermogravimetric analysis, the influence of heating rate (HR: 2.18-19.82°Cmin(-1)) together with variable temperature and hold time on char yield and HHV (in a bomb calorimeter) were determined. Statistically significant effects of HR on HHV with optima at 10.5°Cmin(-1) for LC and 20°Cmin(-1) for MP were obtained. Increases of HHV up to 0.8MJkg(-1) or energy yield greater than 10%, together with a 3-fold reduction in torrefaction conversion time could be achieved by optimisation of HR. Analysis of the torrefaction volatiles by TG-MS showed that not only hemicelluloses, but also lignin conversion, could influence the optimum HR value.

  2. Towards systems biology of the gravity response of higher plants -multiscale analysis of Arabidopsis thaliana root growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palme, Klaus; Aubry, D.; Bensch, M.; Schmidt, T.; Ronneberger, O.; Neu, C.; Li, X.; Wang, H.; Santos, F.; Wang, B.; Paponov, I.; Ditengou, F. A.; Teale, W. T.; Volkmann, D.; Baluska, F.; Nonis, A.; Trevisan, S.; Ruperti, B.; Dovzhenko, A.

    Gravity plays a fundamental role in plant growth and development. Up to now, little is known about the molecular organisation of the signal transduction cascades and networks which co-ordinate gravity perception and response. By using an integrated systems biological approach, a systems analysis of gravity perception and the subsequent tightly-regulated growth response is planned in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. This approach will address questions such as: (i) what are the components of gravity signal transduction pathways? (ii) what are the dynamics of these components? (iii) what is their spatio-temporal regulation in different tis-sues? Using Arabidopsis thaliana as a model-we use root growth to obtain insights in the gravity response. New techniques enable identification of the individual genes affected by grav-ity and further integration of transcriptomics and proteomics data into interaction networks and cell communication events that operate during gravitropic curvature. Using systematic multiscale analysis we have identified regulatory networks consisting of transcription factors, the protein degradation machinery, vesicle trafficking and cellular signalling during the gravire-sponse. We developed approach allowing to incorporate key features of the root system across all relevant spatial and temporal scales to describe gene-expression patterns and correlate them with individual gene and protein functions. Combination of high-resolution microscopy and novel computational tools resulted in development of the root 3D model in which quantitative descriptions of cellular network properties and of multicellular interactions important in root growth and gravitropism can be integrated for the first time.

  3. PRH75, a new nucleus-localized member of the DEAD-box protein family from higher plants.

    PubMed Central

    Lorković, Z J; Herrmann, R G; Oelmüller, R

    1997-01-01

    The putative RNA helicases of the DEAD-box protein family are involved in pre-mRNA splicing, rRNA maturation, ribosome assembly, and translation. Members of this protein family have been identified in organisms from Escherichia coli to humans, but except for the translation initiation factor 4A, there have been no reports on the characterization of other DEAD-box proteins from plants. Here we report on a novel member of the DEAD-box protein family, the plant RNA helicase 75 (PRH75). PRH75 is localized in the nucleus and contains two domains for RNA binding. One is located at the C terminus and is similar to RGG RNA-binding domains of nucleus-localized RNA-binding proteins. The other one is located between amino acids 308 and 622, a region containing the conserved motif VI characteristic of DEAD-box proteins and known as the RNA-binding site of eIF-4A. The N-terminal 81 amino acids are sufficient for nuclear targeting of the protein. Northern and Western blot analyses show that PRH75 is mainly expressed in young and rapidly developing tissues. The purified recombinant PRH75 has a weak ATPase activity which is barely stimulated by RNA ligands. The fractionation of spinach whole-cell extracts by glycerol gradient centrifugation and gel filtration on a Superdex 200 column shows that the protein exists in a complex of about 500 kDa. Possible biological functions of PRH75 as well as structure-function relationships in the context of its modular primary structure are discussed. PMID:9121476

  4. One Laptop per College Student? Exploring the Links between Access to IT Hardware and Academic Performance in Higher Education e-Learning Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Romero, Aaron Alzola

    2012-01-01

    In an attempt to foster student integration in virtual education programs, several higher education institutions have launched systematic large-scale hand-outs of personal computers, inspired by the "One Laptop per Child" distribution model. However, the level of impact of these initiatives on academic performance is not yet well…

  5. The Missing Link in Donor Prescribed Educational Reforms: Lack of Ownership (The Case of the World Bank in Ethiopian Higher Education)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garomssa, Habtamu Diriba

    2016-01-01

    The World Bank (WB) as an international policy transfer and diffusion agent has been actively involved in orchestrating and driving Higher Education (HE) reforms globally. Such impact of the Bank has arguably, been more evident in the context of loan recipient countries. By using a hard mode of influence (financial), and more subtle or soft modes…

  6. AMT1;1 transgenic rice plants with enhanced NH4(+) permeability show superior growth and higher yield under optimal and suboptimal NH4(+) conditions.

    PubMed

    Ranathunge, Kosala; El-Kereamy, Ashraf; Gidda, Satinder; Bi, Yong-Mei; Rothstein, Steven J

    2014-03-01

    The major source of nitrogen for rice (Oryza sativa L.) is ammonium (NH4(+)). The NH4(+) uptake of roots is mainly governed by membrane transporters, with OsAMT1;1 being a prominent member of the OsAMT1 gene family that is known to be involved in NH4(+) transport in rice plants. However, little is known about its involvement in NH4(+) uptake in rice roots and subsequent effects on NH4(+) assimilation. This study shows that OsAMT1;1 is a constitutively expressed, nitrogen-responsive gene, and its protein product is localized in the plasma membrane. Its expression level is under the control of circadian rhythm. Transgenic rice lines (L-2 and L-3) overexpressing the OsAMT1;1 gene had the same root structure as the wild type (WT). However, they had 2-fold greater NH4(+) permeability than the WT, whereas OsAMT1;1 gene expression was 20-fold higher than in the WT. Analogous to the expression, transgenic lines had a higher NH4(+) content in the shoots and roots than the WT. Direct NH4(+) fluxes in the xylem showed that the transgenic lines had significantly greater uptake rates than the WT. Higher NH4(+) contents also promoted higher expression levels of genes in the nitrogen assimilation pathway, resulting in greater nitrogen assimilates, chlorophyll, starch, sugars, and grain yield in transgenic lines than in the WT under suboptimal and optimal nitrogen conditions. OsAMT1;1 also enhanced overall plant growth, especially under suboptimal NH4(+) levels. These results suggest that OsAMT1;1 has the potential for improving nitrogen use efficiency, plant growth, and grain yield under both suboptimal and optimal nitrogen fertilizer conditions.

  7. Fast, linked, and open – the future of taxonomic publishing for plants: launching the journal PhytoKeys

    PubMed Central

    Penev, Lyubomir; Kress, W. John; Knapp, Sandra; Li, De-Zhu; Renner, Susanne

    2010-01-01

    Abstract The paper describes the focus, scope and the rationale of PhytoKeys, a newly established, peer-reviewed, open-access journal in plant systematics. PhytoKeys is launched to respond to four main challenges of our time: (1) Appearance of electronic publications as amendments or even alternatives to paper publications; (2) Open Access (OA) as a new publishing model; (3) Linkage of electronic registers, indices and aggregators that summarize information on biological species through taxonomic names or their persistent identifiers (Globally Unique Identifiers or GUIDs; currently Life Science Identifiers or LSIDs); (4) Web 2.0 technologies that permit the semantic markup of, and semantic enhancements to, published biological texts. The journal will pursue cutting-edge technologies in publication and dissemination of biodiversity information while strictly following the requirements of the current International Code of Botanical Nomenclature (ICBN). PMID:22171165

  8. Advances in biotechnology and informatics to link variation in the genome to phenotypes in plants and animals.

    PubMed

    Appels, R; Barrero, R; Bellgard, M

    2013-03-01

    Advances in our understanding of genome structure provide consistent evidence for the existence of a core genome representing species classically defined by phenotype, as well as conditionally dispensable components of the genome that shows extensive variation between individuals of a given species. Generally, conservation of phenotypic features between species reflects conserved features of the genome; however, this is evidently not necessarily always the case as demonstrated by the analysis of the tunicate chordate Oikopleura dioica. In both plants and animals, the methylation activity of DNA and histones continues to present new variables for modifying (eventually) the phenotype of an organism and provides for structural variation that builds on the point mutations, rearrangements, indels, and amplification of retrotransposable elements traditionally considered. The translation of the advances in the structure/function analysis of the genome to industry is facilitated through the capture of research outputs in "toolboxes" that remain accessible in the public domain.

  9. Establishing a food-chain link between aquatic plant material and avian vacuolar myelinopathy in mallards (Anas platyrhynchos).

    PubMed

    Birrenkott, Anna H; Wilde, Susan B; Hains, John J; Fischer, John R; Murphy, Thomas M; Hope, Charlotte P; Parnell, Pamela G; Bowerman, William W

    2004-07-01

    Avian vacuolar myelinopathy (AVM) is a neurologic disease primarily affecting bald eagles (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) and American coots (Fulica americana). The disease was first characterized in bald eagles in Arkansas in 1994 and then in American coots in 1996. To date, AVM has been confirmed in six additional avian species. Attempts to identify the etiology of AVM have been unsuccessful to date. The objective of this study was to evaluate dermal and oral routes of exposure of birds to hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata) and associated materials to evaluate their ability to induce AVM. Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) were used in all trials; bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus) also were used in one fresh hydrilla material exposure trial. Five trials were conducted, including two fresh hydrilla material exposure trials, two cyanobacteria exposure trials, and a frozen hydrilla material exposure trial. The cyanobacteria exposure trials and frozen hydrilla material trial involved gavaging mallards with either Pseudanabaena catenata (live culture), Hapalosiphon fontinalis, or frozen hydrilla material with both cyanobacteria species present. With the exception of one fresh hydrilla exposure trial, results were negative or inconclusive. In the 2002 hydrilla material exposure trial, six of nine treated ducks had histologic lesions of AVM. This established the first cause-effect link between aquatic vegetation and AVM and provided evidence supporting an aquatic source for the causal agent.

  10. Isoprenoid biosynthesis in higher plants and in Escherichia coli: on the branching in the methylerythritol phosphate pathway and the independent biosynthesis of isopentenyl diphosphate and dimethylallyl diphosphate.

    PubMed Central

    Hoeffler, Jean-François; Hemmerlin, Andréa; Grosdemange-Billiard, Catherine; Bach, Thomas J; Rohmer, Michel

    2002-01-01

    In the bacterium Escherichia coli, the mevalonic-acid (MVA)-independent 2-C-methyl-d-erythritol 4-phosphate (MEP) pathway is characterized by two branches leading separately to isopentenyl diphosphate (IPP) and dimethylallyl diphosphate (DMAPP). The signature of this branching is the retention of deuterium in DMAPP and the deuterium loss in IPP after incorporation of 1-[4-(2)H]deoxy-d-xylulose ([4-(2)H]DX). Feeding tobacco BY-2 cell-suspension cultures with [4-(2)H]DX resulted in deuterium retention in the isoprene units derived from DMAPP, as well as from IPP in the plastidial isoprenoids, phytoene and plastoquinone, synthesized via the MEP pathway. This labelling pattern represents direct evidence for the presence of the DMAPP branch of the MEP pathway in a higher plant, and shows that IPP can be synthesized from DMAPP in plant plastids, most probably via a plastidial IPP isomerase. PMID:12010124

  11. The Rf and Rf-like PPR in higher plants, a fast-evolving subclass of PPR genes.

    PubMed

    Dahan, Jennifer; Mireau, Hakim

    2013-01-01

    In the last years, a number of nuclear genes restoring cytoplasmic male sterility (CMS) have been cloned in various crop species. The majority of these genes have been shown to encode pentatricopeptide repeat proteins (PPR) that act by specifically suppressing the expression of sterility-causing mitochondrial transcripts. Functional analysis of these proteins has indicated that the inhibitory effects of restoring PPR (Rf-PPR) proteins involve various mechanisms, including RNA cleavage, RNA destabilization, or translation inhibition. Cross-species sequence comparison of PPR protein complements revealed that most plant genomes encode 10-30 Rf-like (RFL) proteins sharing high-sequence similarity with the identified Rf-PPRs from crops. Evolutionary analyses further showed that they constitute a monophyletic group apart in the PPR family, with peculiar evolution dynamic and constraints. Here we review recent data on RF-PPRs and present the latest discoveries on the RFL family, with prospects on the functionality and evolution of this peculiar subclass of PPR.

  12. Visualizing the mobility and distribution of chlorophyll proteins in higher plant thylakoid membranes: effects of photoinhibition and protein phosphorylation.

    PubMed

    Goral, Tomasz K; Johnson, Matthew P; Brain, Anthony P R; Kirchhoff, Helmut; Ruban, Alexander V; Mullineaux, Conrad W

    2010-06-01

    The diffusion of proteins in chloroplast thylakoid membranes is believed to be important for processes including the photosystem-II repair cycle and the regulation of light harvesting. However, to date there is very little direct information on the mobility of thylakoid proteins. We have used fluorescence recovery after photobleaching in a laser-scanning confocal microscope to visualize in real time the exchange of chlorophyll proteins between grana in intact spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) and Arabidopsis chloroplasts. Most chlorophyll proteins in the grana appear immobile on the 10-min timescale of our measurements. However, a limited population of chlorophyll proteins (accounting for around 15% of chlorophyll fluorescence) can exchange between grana on this timescale. In intact, wild-type chloroplasts this mobile population increases significantly after photoinhibition, consistent with a role for protein diffusion in the photosystem-II repair cycle. No such increase in mobility is seen in isolated grana membranes, or in the Arabidopsis stn8 and stn7 stn8 mutants, which lack the protein kinases required for phosphorylation of photosystem II core proteins and light-harvesting complexes. Furthermore, mobility under low-light conditions is significantly lower in stn8 and stn7 stn8 plants than in wild-type Arabidopsis. The changes in protein mobility correlate with changes in the packing density and size of thylakoid protein complexes, as observed by freeze-fracture electron microscopy. We conclude that protein phosphorylation switches the membrane system to a more fluid state, thus facilitating the photosystem-II repair cycle.

  13. Volatile metabolites of higher plant crops as a photosynthesizing life support system component under temperature stress at different light intensities.

    PubMed

    Gitelson, I I; Tikhomirov, A A; Parshina, O V; Ushakova, S A; Kalacheva, G S

    2003-01-01

    The effect of elevated temperatures of 35 and 45 degrees C (at the intensities of photosynthetically active radiation 322, 690 and 1104 micromoles m-2 s-1) on the photosynthesis, respiration, and qualitative and quantitative composition of the volatiles emitted by wheat (Triticum aestuvi L., cultivar 232) crops was investigated in growth chambers. Identification and quantification of more than 20 volatile compounds (terpenoids--alpha-pinene, delta 3 carene, limonene, benzene, alpha- and trans-caryophyllene, alpha- and gamma-terpinene, their derivatives, aromatic hydrocarbons, etc.) were conducted by gas chromatograph/mass spectrometry. Under light intensity of 1104 micromoles m-2 s-1 heat resistance of photosynthesis and respiration increased at 35 degrees C and decreased at 45 degrees C. The action of elevated temperatures brought about variations in the rate and direction of the synthesis of volatile metabolites. The emission of volatile compounds was the greatest under a reduced irradiation of 322 micromoles m-2 s-1 and the smallest under 1104 micromoles m-2 s-1 at 35 degrees C. During the repair period, the contents and proportions of volatile compounds were different from their initial values, too. The degree of disruption and the following recovery of the functional state depended on the light intensity during the exposure to elevated temperatures. The investigation of the atmosphere of the growth chamber without plants has revealed the substances that were definitely technogenic in origin: tetramethylurea, dimethylsulfide, dibutylsulfide, dibutylphthalate, and a number of components of furan and silane nature.

  14. Toxicity of combined chromium(VI) and phenanthrene pollution on the seed germination, stem lengths, and fresh weights of higher plants.

    PubMed

    Hu, Shuangqing; Gu, Hairong; Cui, Chunyan; Ji, Rong

    2016-08-01

    Studies of the interaction and toxicity of pollutant combinations such as heavy metals and PAHs are of practical importance in the remediation and monitoring of the industrial soil environment. This study investigated the single and combined toxicity of chromium(VI) and phenanthrene on three important higher plants: mung beans (Phaseolus aureus), pakchoi cabbage (Brassica chinensis), and rice (Oryza sativa). In experiments using artificial soil matrix, the EC10 and EC20 of the two pollutants, alone and in combination, were analyzed with respect to seed germination, stem length, and above-ground fresh weight of these higher plants. The additive index method was used to evaluate the combined biological toxicity of chromium(VI) and phenanthrene. The results showed that the EC20 of chromium(VI) on the stem lengths of mung beans, pakchoi cabbage, and rice was 289, 248, and 550 mg kg(-1), respectively. The corresponding EC20 values for the fresh weights of the three plants were 334, 307, and 551 mg kg(-1). The EC20 of phenanthrene on the stem lengths of mung beans, pakchoi cabbage, and rice was 528, 426, and 628 mg kg(-1), respectively. The corresponding EC20 values for the fresh weights of the three plants were 696, 585, and 768 mg kg(-1). The EC20 of a combination of chromium(VI) and phenanthrene on the stem lengths of mung beans, pakchoi cabbage, and rice was 192, 173, and 279 mg kg(-1), respectively, and 200, 205, and 271 mg kg(-1) for the fresh weights of the three plants. The single and combined exposure of soil to chromium(VI) and phenanthrene had deleterious effects on plants in the early stage of growth. Overall, pakchoi cabbage was more sensitive than mung beans and rice. The two pollutants exerted synergistic effects on the stem lengths and above-ground fresh weights of both mung beans and rice but antagonistic effects on pakchoi cabbage. The results of this study also suggested pakchoi cabbage as a sensitive indicator of soil pollution.

  15. Influence of high concentrations of mineral salts on production process and NaCl accumulation by Salicornia europaea plants as a constituent of the LSS phototroph link

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tikhomirova, N. A.; Ushakova, S. A.; Kovaleva, N. P.; Gribovskaya, I. V.; Tikhomirov, A. A.

    of an average plant totaled 8 g. The increase of K quantity in the experimental solutions resulted in an elevated content of the element in the plants. The increase of K uptake in the second experimental variant was accompanied by a 30-50% decrease of Na content in comparison with the other variants. Comparative Na content in the other variants was practically identical. N, Mg and P content in the control and experimental variants was also practically identical. The increase of S quantity in the second experimental variant also increased S uptake by the plants. But Ca quantity, accumulated in aboveground plants biomass in the experimental variants was lower than in the control. NaCl uptake by plants, depending on the concentration of mineral salts in the experimental solutions, ranged from 8 g (maximum salt content) up to 15 g (minimum salt content) on a plant growth area that totaled 0.032 m 2. Thus, high concentrations of mineral salts simulating the content of mineral salts contained in urine did not result in a significant decrease of S. europaea productivity. The present work also considers the influence of higher light intensity concentrations on productivity and NaCl accumulation by S. europaea plants grown on experimental solutions with high salt content.

  16. Influence of high concentrations of mineral salts on production process and NaCl accumulation by Salicornia europaea plants as a constituent of the LSS phototroph link.

    PubMed

    Tikhomirova, N A; Ushakova, S A; Kovaleva, N P; Gribovskaya, I V; Tikhomirov, A A

    2005-01-01

    biomass of an average plant totaled 8 g. The increase of K quantity in the experimental solutions resulted in an elevated content of the element in the plants. The increase of K uptake in the second experimental variant was accompanied by a 30-50% decrease of Na content in comparison with the other variants. Comparative Na content in the other variants was practically identical. N, Mg and P content in the control and experimental variants was also practically identical. The increase of S quantity in the second experimental variant also increased S uptake by the plants. But Ca quantity, accumulated in aboveground plants biomass in the experimental variants was lower than in the control. NaCl uptake by plants, depending on the concentration of mineral salts in the experimental solutions, ranged from 8 g (maximum salt content) up to 15 g (minimum salt content) on a plant growth area that totaled 0.032 m2. Thus, high concentrations of mineral salts simulating the content of mineral salts contained in urine did not result in a significant decrease of S. europaea productivity. The present work also considers the influence of higher light intensity concentrations on productivity and NaCl accumulation by S. europaea plants grown on experimental solutions with high salt content.

  17. Isotopic niche variation in a higher trophic level ectotherm: highlighting the role of succulent plants in desert food webs.

    PubMed

    Delibes, Miguel; Blazquez, Ma Carmen; Fedriani, Jose Maria; Granados, Arsenio; Soriano, Laura; Delgado, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Stable isotope analysis of animal tissues allows description of isotopic niches, whose axes in an n-dimensional space are the isotopic ratios, compared to a standard, of different isotope systems (e.g. δ(13)C, δ(15)N). Isotopic niches are informative about where an animal, population or species lives and about what it consumes. Here we describe inter- and intrapopulation isotopic niche (bidimensional δ(13)C-δ(15)N space) of the Orange-throated whiptail (Aspidoscelis hyperythra), an arthropodivorous small lizard, in ten localities of Baja California Sur (Mexico). These localities range from extreme arid to subtropical conditions. Between 13 and 20 individuals were sampled at each locality and 1 cm of tail-tip was collected for isotope analysis. As expected, interpopulation niche width variation was much larger than intrapopulation one. Besides, isotopic variation was not related to age, sex or individual size of lizards. This suggests geographic variation of the isotopic niche was related to changes in the basal resources that fuel the trophic web at each locality. The position of Bayesian isotope ellipses in the δ-space indicated that whiptails in more arid localities were enriched in 13C, suggesting most of the carbon they ingested came from CAM succulent plants (cacti, agaves) and in minor degree in C4 grasses. Contrarily, whiptails in subtropical areas were depleted in 13C, as they received more carbon from C3 scrubs and trees. Localities closer to sea-level tended to be enriched in 15N, but a clear influence of marine subsidies was detected only at individual level. The study contributes to identify the origin and pathways through which energy flows across the trophic webs of North American deserts.

  18. Isotopic Niche Variation in a Higher Trophic Level Ectotherm: Highlighting the Role of Succulent Plants in Desert Food Webs

    PubMed Central

    Delibes, Miguel; Blazquez, Ma Carmen; Fedriani, Jose Maria; Granados, Arsenio; Soriano, Laura; Delgado, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Stable isotope analysis of animal tissues allows description of isotopic niches, whose axes in an n-dimensional space are the isotopic ratios, compared to a standard, of different isotope systems (e.g. δ13C, δ15N). Isotopic niches are informative about where an animal, population or species lives and about what it consumes. Here we describe inter- and intrapopulation isotopic niche (bidimensional δ13C-δ15N space) of the Orange-throated whiptail (Aspidoscelis hyperythra), an arthropodivorous small lizard, in ten localities of Baja California Sur (Mexico). These localities range from extreme arid to subtropical conditions. Between 13 and 20 individuals were sampled at each locality and 1 cm of tail-tip was collected for isotope analysis. As expected, interpopulation niche width variation was much larger than intrapopulation one. Besides, isotopic variation was not related to age, sex or individual size of lizards. This suggests geographic variation of the isotopic niche was related to changes in the basal resources that fuel the trophic web at each locality. The position of Bayesian isotope ellipses in the δ-space indicated that whiptails in more arid localities were enriched in 13C, suggesting most of the carbon they ingested came from CAM succulent plants (cacti, agaves) and in minor degree in C4 grasses. Contrarily, whiptails in subtropical areas were depleted in 13C, as they received more carbon from C3 scrubs and trees. Localities closer to sea-level tended to be enriched in 15N, but a clear influence of marine subsidies was detected only at individual level. The study contributes to identify the origin and pathways through which energy flows across the trophic webs of North American deserts. PMID:25973609

  19. Regulation of intracellular pH values in higher plant cells. Carbon-13 and phosphorus-31 nuclear magnetic resonance studies.

    PubMed

    Gout, E; Bligny, R; Douce, R

    1992-07-15

    The regulation of the cytoplasmic and vacuolar pH values (pHc and pHv) in sycamore (Acer pseudoplatanus L.) cells was analyzed using 31P and 13C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Suspension-cultured cells were compressed in the NMR tube and perfused with the help of an original arrangement enabling a tight control of the pH (external pH, pHe) of the carefully oxygenated circulating nutrient medium. Intracellular pH values were measured from the chemical shifts of: CH2-linked carboxyl groups of citric acid below pH 5.7; orthophosphate between pH 5.7 and 8.0; 13C-enriched bicarbonate over pH 8.0. pHc and pHv were independent of pHe over the range 4.5-7.5. In contrast intracellular pH values decreased rapidly below pHe 4.5 and increased progressively at pHe over 7.5. There was an acceleration in the rate of O2 consumption accompanied with a decrease in cytoplasmic ATP concentration as pHe decreased. When the rate of O2 consumption was approaching the uncoupled O2 uptake rate, a loss of pHc control was observed. It is concluded that as pHe decreased, the plasma membrane ATPase consumed more and more ATP to reject the invading H+ ions in order to maintain pHc at a constant value. Below pHe 4.5 the efficiency of the H+ pump to react to back leakage of H+ ions became insufficient, leading to an acidification of pHc and to an alkalinization of pHe. On the other hand, over pHe 7.5 a passive influx of OH- ions was observed, and pHc increased proportionally to the increase of pHe. Simultaneously appreciable amounts of organic acids (malate and citrate) were synthesized by cells during the course of the alkalinization of the cytoplasmic compartment. The synthesis of organic acids which partially counteract the alkalinization of the cytoplasmic compartment may result from a marked activation of the cytoplasmic phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase induced by an increase in cytoplasmic bicarbonate concentration. The fluctuations of pHv followed a similar course to that of p

  20. Link practical-oriented research and education: New training tools for a sustainable use of plant protection products.

    PubMed

    Sacchettini, G; Calliera, M

    2017-02-01

    In the Horizon 2020 work programme 2016-17 it is stated that in 2010, 71% of European farm managers were operating on the basis of practical experience only. Education levels greatly vary depending on country, farm managers' age and gender, or farm structures, and this can hamper innovation. Transition towards a more sustainable agriculture requires a renewal and strengthening of the technical skills of all the actors involved and - as a consequence - of the educational system. The EU Directive on the sustainable use of pesticides (EU, 128/2009/EC) requires European Member States to develop training activities targeting occupational exposure to pesticides. The objective of this study is to develop new training tools for operators, addressing the new legal requirements and taking into account what is already available. For this reason, the outcomes of different European and national research projects developed by the Opera Research Centre were used, involving stakeholders in the decision making process, but also considering the real behaviours and perceptions of the final users. As a result, an e-learning tool able to build personalized training programmes, by collecting and integrating existing training material on Plant Protection Products use was developed, together with an e-learning course, with the aim to help operators, advisors and distributors to get prepared for their national certificate test. This work highlights the opportunity to create long-term added value through enhanced collaboration between educators and researchers, and identifies a common set of priorities that has to be taken into account in order to nudge the changes required to achieve a more sustainable use of pesticide and, more in general, sustainable development.

  1. Structure-Function Analysis of a Broad Specificity Populus trichocarpa Endo-β-glucanase Reveals an Evolutionary Link between Bacterial Licheninases and Plant XTH Gene Products*

    PubMed Central

    Eklöf, Jens M.; Shojania, Shaheen; Okon, Mark; McIntosh, Lawrence P.; Brumer, Harry

    2013-01-01

    The large xyloglucan endotransglycosylase/hydrolase (XTH) gene family continues to be the focus of much attention in studies of plant cell wall morphogenesis due to the unique catalytic functions of the enzymes it encodes. The XTH gene products compose a subfamily of glycoside hydrolase family 16 (GH16), which also comprises a broad range of microbial endoglucanases and endogalactanases, as well as yeast cell wall chitin/β-glucan transglycosylases. Previous whole-family phylogenetic analyses have suggested that the closest relatives to the XTH gene products are the bacterial licheninases (EC 3.2.1.73), which specifically hydrolyze linear mixed linkage β(1→3)/β(1→4)-glucans. In addition to their specificity for the highly branched xyloglucan polysaccharide, XTH gene products are distinguished from the licheninases and other GH16 enzyme subfamilies by significant active site loop alterations and a large C-terminal extension. Given these differences, the molecular evolution of the XTH gene products in GH16 has remained enigmatic. Here, we present the biochemical and structural analysis of a unique, mixed function endoglucanase from black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa), which reveals a small, newly recognized subfamily of GH16 members intermediate between the bacterial licheninases and plant XTH gene products. We postulate that this clade comprises an important link in the evolution of the large plant XTH gene families from a putative microbial ancestor. As such, this analysis provides new insights into the diversification of GH16 and further unites the apparently disparate members of this important family of proteins. PMID:23572521

  2. Linking molecular biomarkers with higher level condition indicators to identify effects of copper exposures on the endangered delta smelt (Hypomesus transpacificus).

    PubMed

    Connon, Richard E; Beggel, Sebastian; D'Abronzo, Leandro S; Geist, Juergen P; Pfeiff, Janice; Loguinov, Alexander V; Vulpe, Christopher D; Werner, Inge

    2011-02-01

    The delta smelt (Hypomesus transpacificus) is an endangered pelagic fish species endemic to the Sacramento-San Joaquin estuary (CA, USA), and considered an indicator of ecosystem health. Copper is a contaminant of concern in Californian waterways that may affect the development and survival of this endangered species. The experimental combination of molecular biomarkers with higher level effects may allow for interpretation of responses in a functional context that can be used to predict detrimental outcomes caused by exposure. A delta smelt microarray was developed and applied to screen for candidate molecular biomarkers that may be used in monitoring programs. Functional classifications of microarray responses were used along with quantitative polymerase chain reaction determining effects upon neuromuscular, digestive, and immune responses in Cu-exposed delta smelt. Differences in sensitivity were measured between juveniles and larvae (median lethal concentration = 25.2 and 80.4 µg/L Cu(2+), respectively). Swimming velocity declined with higher exposure concentrations in a dose-dependent manner (r =  -0.911, p < 0.05), though was not statistically significant to controls. Genes encoding for aspartoacylase, hemopexin, α-actin, and calcium regulation proteins were significantly affected by exposure and were functionally interpreted with measured swimming responses. Effects on digestion were measured by upregulation of chitinase and downregulation of amylase, whereas downregulation of tumor necrosis factor indicated a probable compromised immune system. Results from this study, and many others, support the use of functionally characterized molecular biomarkers to assess effects of contaminants in field scenarios. We thus propose that to attribute environmental relevance to molecular biomarkers, research should concentrate on their application in field studies with the aim of assisting monitoring programs.

  3. Stearoyl-acyl-carrier-protein desaturase from higher plants is structurally unrelated to the animal and fungal homologs

    SciTech Connect

    Shanklin, J.; Somerville, C. )

    1991-03-15

    Stearoyl-acyl-carrier-protein (ACP) desaturase was purified to homogeneity from avocado mesocarp, and monospecific polyclonal antibodies directed against the protein were used to isolate full-length cDNA clones from Ricinus communis (castor) seed and Cucumis sativus (cucumber). The nucleotide sequence of the castor clone pRCD1 revealed an open reading frame of 1.2 kilobases encoding a 396-amino acid protein of 45 kDa. The cucumber clone pCSD1 encoded a homologous 396-amino acid protein with 88% amino acid identity to the castor clone. Expression of pRCD1 in Saccharomyces cerevisiae resulted in the accumulation of a functional stearoyl-ACP desaturase, demonstrating that the introduction of this single gene product was sufficient to confer soluble desaturase activity to yeast. There was a 48-residue region of 29% amino acid sequence identity between residues 53 and 101 of the castor desaturase and the proximal border of the dehydratase region of the fatty acid synthase from yeast. Stearoyl-ACP mRNA was present at substantially higher levels in developing seeds than in leaf and root tissue, suggesting that expression of the {Delta}{sup 9} desaturase is developmentally regulated.

  4. The RNase E/G-type endoribonuclease of higher plants is located in the chloroplast and cleaves RNA similarly to the E. coli enzyme

    PubMed Central

    Schein, Aleks; Sheffy-Levin, Sharon; Glaser, Fabian; Schuster, Gadi

    2008-01-01

    RNase E is an endoribonuclease that has been studied primarily in Escherichia coli, where it is prominently involved in the processing and degradation of RNA. Homologs of bacterial RNase E are encoded in the nuclear genome of higher plants. RNA degradation in the chloroplast, an organelle that originated from a prokaryote similar to cyanobacteria, occurs via the polyadenylation-assisted degradation pathway. In E. coli, this process is probably initiated with the removal of 5′-end phosphates followed by endonucleolytic cleavage by RNase E. The plant homolog has been proposed to function in a similar way in the chloroplast. Here we show that RNase E of Arabidopsis is located in the soluble fraction of the chloroplast as a high molecular weight complex. In order to characterize its endonucleolytic activity, Arabidopsis RNase E was expressed in bacteria and analyzed. Similar to its E. coli counterpart, the endonucleolytic activity of the Arabidopsis enzyme depends on the number of phosphates at the 5′ end, is inhibited by structured RNA, and preferentially cleaves A/U-rich sequences. The enzyme forms an oligomeric complex of ∼680 kDa. The chloroplast localization and the similarity in the two enzymes' characteristics suggest that plant RNase E participates in the initial endonucleolytic cleavage of the polyadenylation-stimulated RNA degradation process in the chloroplast, perhaps in collaboration with the two other chloroplast endonucleases, RNase J and CSP41. PMID:18441049

  5. In search of actionable targets for agrigenomics and microalgal biofuel production: sequence-structural diversity studies on algal and higher plants with a focus on GPAT protein.

    PubMed

    Misra, Namrata; Panda, Prasanna Kumar

    2013-04-01

    The triacylglycerol (TAG) pathway provides several targets for genetic engineering to optimize microalgal lipid productivity. GPAT (glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase) is a crucial enzyme that catalyzes the initial step of TAG biosynthesis. Despite many recent biochemical studies, a comprehensive sequence-structure analysis of GPAT across diverse lipid-yielding organisms is lacking. Hence, we performed a comparative genomic analysis of plastid-located GPAT proteins from 7 microalgae and 3 higher plants species. The close evolutionary relationship observed between red algae/diatoms and green algae/plant lineages in the phylogenetic tree were further corroborated by motif and gene structure analysis. The predicted molecular weight, amino acid composition, Instability Index, and hydropathicity profile gave an overall representation of the biochemical features of GPAT protein across the species under study. Furthermore, homology models of GPAT from Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, Arabidopsis thaliana, and Glycine max provided deep insights into the protein architecture and substrate binding sites. Despite low sequence identity found between algal and plant GPATs, the developed models exhibited strikingly conserved topology consisting of 14α helices and 9β sheets arranged in two domains. However, subtle variations in amino acids of fatty acyl binding site were identified that might influence the substrate selectivity of GPAT. Together, the results will provide useful resources to understand the functional and evolutionary relationship of GPAT and potentially benefit in development of engineered enzyme for augmenting algal biofuel production.

  6. Can Stress-Induced Biochemical Differences drive Variation in the Hydrogen Isotope Composition of Leaf Wax n-Alkanes from Terrestrial Higher Plants?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eley, Y.; Pedentchouk, N.; Dawson, L.

    2014-12-01

    Recent research has identified that interspecies variation in leaf wax n-alkane 2H/1H from plants growing at the same geographical location can exceed 100‰. These differences cannot easily be explained by mechanisms that influence the isotopic composition of leaf water. Biochemical processes are therefore likely to drive some of this variability. Currently, however, little is known about the relative importance of different biochemical processes in shaping n-alkane hydrogen isotope composition. To explore this issue, we combined n-alkane δ2H analysis with measurements of: (i) the percentage content of leaf C and N; and (ii) foliar δ15N, from seven plants growing at Stiffkey salt marsh, Norfolk, UK. These species differ biochemically in respect of the protective compounds they produce under salt or water stressed conditions, with monocots generally producing more carbohydrates, and dicots producing more nitrogenous compounds. We found that monocots had higher %C, while dicots had higher %N and 15N-enriched leaf tissue. We identified a systematic relationship between the nature of the dominant protective compound produced (carbohydrate vs. nitrogenous) and n-alkane 2H/1H: species with a greater proportion of carbohydrates have more negative δ2H values. These findings might imply that shifts in the relative contribution of H to pyruvate from NADPH (2H-depleted) and recycled carbohydrates (2H-enriched) can influence n-alkane δ2H. The 2H-depletion of monocot n-alkanes relative to dicots may therefore be due to a greater proportion of NADPH-derived H incorporated into pyruvate because of their enhanced demand for carbohydrates. The production of protective compounds in plant species is a common response to a range of abiotic stresses (e.g. high UV irradiation, drought, salinity, high/low temperature). Species-specific biochemical responses to stress could therefore influence n-alkane 2H/1H across a range of habitats. This study highlights the importance of detailed

  7. A common registration-to-publication automated pipeline for nomenclatural acts for higher plants (International Plant Names Index, IPNI), fungi (Index Fungorum, MycoBank) and animals (ZooBank)

    PubMed Central

    Penev, Lyubomir; Paton, Alan; Nicolson, Nicola; Kirk, Paul; Pyle, Richard L.; Whitton, Robert; Georgiev, Teodor; Barker, Christine; Hopkins, Christopher; Robert, Vincent; Biserkov, Jordan; Stoev, Pavel

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Collaborative effort among four lead indexes of taxon names and nomenclatural acts (International Plant Name Index (IPNI), Index Fungorum, MycoBank and ZooBank) and the journals PhytoKeys, MycoKeys and ZooKeys to create an automated, pre-publication, registration workflow, based on a server-to-server, XML request/response model. The registration model for ZooBank uses the TaxPub schema, which is an extension to the Journal Tag Publishing Suite (JATS) of the National Library of Medicine (NLM). The indexing or registration model of IPNI and Index Fungorum will use the Taxonomic Concept Transfer Schema (TCS) as a basic standard for the workflow. Other journals and publishers who intend to implement automated, pre-publication, registration of taxon names and nomenclatural acts can also use the open sample XML formats and links to schemas and relevant information published in the paper. PMID:26877662

  8. Is the ability of biocontrol fluorescent pseudomonads to produce the antifungal metabolite 2,4-diacetylphloroglucinol really synonymous with higher plant protection?

    PubMed

    Rezzonico, Fabio; Zala, Marcello; Keel, Christoph; Duffy, Brion; Moënne-Loccoz, Yvan; Défago, Geneviève

    2007-01-01

    The antifungal compound 2,4-diacetylphloroglucinol (Phl) contributes to biocontrol in pseudomonads, but whether or not Phl(+) biocontrol pseudomonads display higher plant-protecting activity than Phl(-) biocontrol pseudomonads remains to be demonstrated. This issue was addressed by assessing 230 biocontrol fluorescent pseudomonads selected from a collection of 3132 bacterial isolates obtained from 63 soils worldwide. One-third of the biocontrol pseudomonads were Phl(+) and almost all Phl(+) isolates also produced hydrogen cyanide (HCN). The only Phl(+) HCN(-) strain did harbor hcn genes, but with the deletion of a 134 bp hcnC fragment corresponding to an ADP-binding motif. Statistical analysis of biocontrol isolate distributions indicated that Phl production ability was associated with superior disease suppression activity in the Pythium-cucumber and Fusarium-tomato pathosystems, but this was also the case with HCN production ability. However, HCN significance was not as strong, as indicated both by the comparison of Phl(-) HCN(+) and Phl(-) HCN(-) strains and by correlation analyses. This is the first population-level demonstration of the higher plant-protecting activity of Phl(+) biocontrol pseudomonads in comparison with Phl(-) biocontrol pseudomonads.

  9. Composition and biosynthesis of thylakoid membrane polypeptides in the red alga Cyanidium caldarium: Comparison with the thylakoid polypeptide composition of higher plants and cyanobacteria.

    PubMed

    Yurina, N P; Karakashev, G V; Karapetyan