WorldWideScience

Sample records for plant varietal diversity

  1. Inter-varietal interactions among plants in genotypically diverse mixtures tend to decrease herbivore performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grettenberger, Ian M; Tooker, John F

    2016-09-01

    Much research has explored the effects of plant species diversity on herbivore populations, but far less has considered effects of plant genotypic diversity, or how abiotic stressors, like drought, can modify effects. Mechanisms by which plant genotypic diversity affects herbivore populations remain largely unresolved. We used greenhouse studies with a model system of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and bird cherry-oat aphid (Rhopalosiphum padi L.) to determine whether the genotypic diversity of a plant's neighborhood influences performance and fitness of herbivores on a focal plant and if drought changes the influence of neighborhood diversity. Taken across all varieties we tested, plant-plant interactions in diverse neighborhoods reduced aphid performance and generated associational resistance, although effects on aphids depended on variety identity. In diverse mixtures, drought stress greatly diminished the genotypic diversity-driven reduction in aphid performance. Neighborhood diversity influenced mother aphid size, and appeared to partially explain how plant-plant interactions reduced the number of offspring produced in mixtures. Plant size did not mediate effects on aphid performance, although neighborhood diversity reduced plant mass across varieties and watering treatments. Our results suggest inter-varietal interactions in genotypic mixtures can affect herbivore performance in the absence of herbivore movement and that abiotic stress may diminish any effects. Accounting for how neighborhood diversity influences resistance of an individual plant to herbivores will help aid development of mixtures of varieties for managing insect pests and clarify the role of plant genotypic diversity in ecosystems.

  2. Traditional agroecosystems as conservatories and incubators of cultivated plant varietal diversity: the case of fig (Ficus carica L.) in Morocco

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Background Traditional agroecosystems are known to host both large crop species diversity and high within crop genetic diversity. In a context of global change, this diversity may be needed to feed the world. Are these agroecosystems museums (i.e. large core collections) or cradles of diversity? We investigated this question for a clonally propagated plant, fig (Ficus carica), within its native range, in Morocco, but as far away as possible from supposed centers of domestication. Results Fig varieties were locally numerous. They were found to be mainly highly local and corresponded to clones propagated vegetatively. Nevertheless these clones were often sufficiently old to have accumulated somatic mutations for selected traits (fig skin color) and at neutral loci (microsatellite markers). Further the pattern of spatial genetic structure was similar to the pattern expected in natural population for a mutation/drift/migration model at equilibrium, with homogeneous levels of local genetic diversity throughout Moroccan traditional agroecosystems. Conclusions We conclude that traditional agroecosystems constitue active incubators of varietal diversity even for clonally propagated crop species, and even when varieties correspond to clones that are often old. As only female fig is cultivated, wild fig and cultivated fig probably constitute a single evolutionary unit within these traditional agroecosystems. Core collections, however useful, are museums and hence cannot serve the same functions as traditional agroecosystems. PMID:20167055

  3. Traditional agroecosystems as conservatories and incubators of cultivated plant varietal diversity: the case of fig (Ficus carica L. in Morocco

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Santoni Sylvain

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Traditional agroecosystems are known to host both large crop species diversity and high within crop genetic diversity. In a context of global change, this diversity may be needed to feed the world. Are these agroecosystems museums (i.e. large core collections or cradles of diversity? We investigated this question for a clonally propagated plant, fig (Ficus carica, within its native range, in Morocco, but as far away as possible from supposed centers of domestication. Results Fig varieties were locally numerous. They were found to be mainly highly local and corresponded to clones propagated vegetatively. Nevertheless these clones were often sufficiently old to have accumulated somatic mutations for selected traits (fig skin color and at neutral loci (microsatellite markers. Further the pattern of spatial genetic structure was similar to the pattern expected in natural population for a mutation/drift/migration model at equilibrium, with homogeneous levels of local genetic diversity throughout Moroccan traditional agroecosystems. Conclusions We conclude that traditional agroecosystems constitue active incubators of varietal diversity even for clonally propagated crop species, and even when varieties correspond to clones that are often old. As only female fig is cultivated, wild fig and cultivated fig probably constitute a single evolutionary unit within these traditional agroecosystems. Core collections, however useful, are museums and hence cannot serve the same functions as traditional agroecosystems.

  4. Traditional agroecosystems as conservatories and incubators of cultivated plant varietal diversity: the case of fig (Ficus carica L.) in Morocco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Achtak, Hafid; Ater, Mohammed; Oukabli, Ahmed; Santoni, Sylvain; Kjellberg, Finn; Khadari, Bouchaib

    2010-02-18

    Traditional agroecosystems are known to host both large crop species diversity and high within crop genetic diversity. In a context of global change, this diversity may be needed to feed the world. Are these agroecosystems museums (i.e. large core collections) or cradles of diversity? We investigated this question for a clonally propagated plant, fig (Ficus carica), within its native range, in Morocco, but as far away as possible from supposed centers of domestication. Fig varieties were locally numerous. They were found to be mainly highly local and corresponded to clones propagated vegetatively. Nevertheless these clones were often sufficiently old to have accumulated somatic mutations for selected traits (fig skin color) and at neutral loci (microsatellite markers). Further the pattern of spatial genetic structure was similar to the pattern expected in natural population for a mutation/drift/migration model at equilibrium, with homogeneous levels of local genetic diversity throughout Moroccan traditional agroecosystems. We conclude that traditional agroecosystems constitue active incubators of varietal diversity even for clonally propagated crop species, and even when varieties correspond to clones that are often old. As only female fig is cultivated, wild fig and cultivated fig probably constitute a single evolutionary unit within these traditional agroecosystems. Core collections, however useful, are museums and hence cannot serve the same functions as traditional agroecosystems.

  5. The Use of Rice Varietal Diversity for Rice Blast Control

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHU You-yong; LI Zuo-shen; LU Bao-rong; CHEN Hai-ru; FAN Jing-hua; WANG Yun-yue; LI Yan; FAN Jin-xiang; YANG Shi-sheng; MA Guan-liang; CHEN Jian-bin

    2003-01-01

    Field experiments of mixed- (intercropping) and pure-planting (monoculture) of four rice vari-eties, representing improved hybrid varieties (Shanyou63 and Shanyou22) and high-quality traditional varie-ties (Huangkenuo and Zigu) from Yunnan Province, were conducted based on their differences in genetic back-ground and agro-economical characteristics. The results demonstrated that the mixed-planting of the hybridrice and high-quality traditional rice varieties had a significantly greater effect on controlling rice blast diseasethan the monocuiture of these varieties, particularly the traditional ones. It is evident for the highly suscepti-ble traditional varieties in mixed-planting to achieve disease control, with significant decreases in blast inci-dences and severity indexes. The blast control efficiency reached up to 83 - 98 % under such planting model.This suggests that an appropriate mixed-planting of rice varieties with diverse genetic background and agro-e-conomical characteristics is an effective approach for rice blast control. In addition, resistance of the tradi-tional rice varieties to lodging was considerably increased in the plots with mixed-planting, compared with theplots with monoculture. The average rate of grain-yield increase ranged from 6.5 to 9.7 % in the plots withmixed-planting.

  6. Inter-varietal variation in caesium and strontium uptake by plants: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penrose, B; Beresford, N A; Broadley, M R; Crout, N M J

    2015-01-01

    Radiocaesium and radiostrontium enter the foodchain primarily via plant root uptake. Selecting varieties of crop that display low accumulation of these radionuclides has been suggested as an economically and socially acceptable remediation strategy for radiologically contaminated land. However, there is insufficient information available to assess the feasibility of this remediation approach. This paper presents a comprehensive literature-based evaluation of inter-varietal variation in accumulation of Cs and Sr in crop plants. Thirty-seven publications studying 27 plant species were identified as appropriate for these analyses. Inter-varietal variation was expressed at the ratio of the maximum to minimum observed concentrations for a given crop species and element and ranged from 1.0 to 6.3 and from 1.0 to 4.5 for Cs and Sr respectively. This variation suggests that exploitation of inter-varietal variation could be used in some crop species to reduce the transfer of these radionuclides to a similar extent to existing remediation strategies. Low-Sr accumulating varieties were also found to have lower concentrations of Ca, whereas low Cs-accumulating varieties were not shown to have low K accumulation. Concentrations of Cs and Sr in plants were not related, suggesting that finding varieties displaying low accumulation of both Sr and Cs may not be feasible. Varietal selection could be an effective remediation strategy, and could be used in combination with other existing methods, such as fertilisation and ploughing. However, a thorough investigation of species contributing the most to ingestion doses is recommended to fully determine the feasibility of varietal selection as a remediation strategy. The reproducibility of inter-varietal variation between sites and growing seasons should be the focus of future research.

  7. Varietal Dynamics and Yam Agro-Diversity Demonstrate Complex Trajectories Intersecting Farmers’ Strategies, Networks, and Disease Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penet, Laurent; Cornet, Denis; Blazy, Jean-Marc; Alleyne, Angela; Barthe, Emilie; Bussière, François; Guyader, Sébastien; Pavis, Claudie; Pétro, Dalila

    2016-01-01

    Loss of varietal diversity is a worldwide challenge to crop species at risk for genetic erosion, while the loss of biological resources may hinder future breeding objectives. Loss of varieties has been mostly investigated in traditional agricultural systems where variety numbers are dramatically high, or for most economically important crop species for which comparison between pre-intensive and modern agriculture was possible. Varietal dynamics, i.e., turnover, or gains and losses of varieties by farmers, is nevertheless more rarely studied and while we currently have good estimates of genetic or varietal diversity for most crop species, we have less information as to how on farm agro-diversity changes and what cause its dynamics. We therefore investigated varietal dynamics in the agricultural yam system in the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe. We interviewed producers about varieties they cultivated in the past compared to their current varieties, in addition to characterizing yam cropping characteristics and both farm level and producers socio-economic features. We then used regression tree analyses to investigate the components of yam agro-diversity, varietal dynamics and impact of anthracnose on varieties. Our data demonstrated that no dramatic loss of varieties occurred within the last decades. Cultivation changes mostly affected widespread cultivars while frequency of uncommon varieties stayed relatively stable. Varietal dynamics nevertheless followed sub-regional patterns, and socio-economic influences such as producer age or farm crop diversity. Recurrent anthracnose epidemics since the 1970s did not alter varietal dynamics strongly, but sometimes translated into transition from Dioscorea alata to less susceptible species or into a decrease of yam cultivation. Factors affecting changes in agro-diversity were not relating to agronomy in our study, and surprisingly there were different processes delineating short term from long term varietal dynamics

  8. Varietal Dynamics and Yam Agro-Diversity Demonstrate Complex Trajectories Intersecting Farmers' Strategies, Networks, and Disease Experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penet, Laurent; Cornet, Denis; Blazy, Jean-Marc; Alleyne, Angela; Barthe, Emilie; Bussière, François; Guyader, Sébastien; Pavis, Claudie; Pétro, Dalila

    2016-01-01

    Loss of varietal diversity is a worldwide challenge to crop species at risk for genetic erosion, while the loss of biological resources may hinder future breeding objectives. Loss of varieties has been mostly investigated in traditional agricultural systems where variety numbers are dramatically high, or for most economically important crop species for which comparison between pre-intensive and modern agriculture was possible. Varietal dynamics, i.e., turnover, or gains and losses of varieties by farmers, is nevertheless more rarely studied and while we currently have good estimates of genetic or varietal diversity for most crop species, we have less information as to how on farm agro-diversity changes and what cause its dynamics. We therefore investigated varietal dynamics in the agricultural yam system in the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe. We interviewed producers about varieties they cultivated in the past compared to their current varieties, in addition to characterizing yam cropping characteristics and both farm level and producers socio-economic features. We then used regression tree analyses to investigate the components of yam agro-diversity, varietal dynamics and impact of anthracnose on varieties. Our data demonstrated that no dramatic loss of varieties occurred within the last decades. Cultivation changes mostly affected widespread cultivars while frequency of uncommon varieties stayed relatively stable. Varietal dynamics nevertheless followed sub-regional patterns, and socio-economic influences such as producer age or farm crop diversity. Recurrent anthracnose epidemics since the 1970s did not alter varietal dynamics strongly, but sometimes translated into transition from Dioscorea alata to less susceptible species or into a decrease of yam cultivation. Factors affecting changes in agro-diversity were not relating to agronomy in our study, and surprisingly there were different processes delineating short term from long term varietal dynamics

  9. Genetic diversity of alfalfa domesticated varietal populations from Libyan genbank revealed by RAPD markers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahsyee Salem R.

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L. is an important forage legume in Libya. The genetic diversity of nine alfalfa domesticated varietal populations was studied using thirteen RAPD primer combinations. The number of polymorphic fragments detected per primer combination ranged from 8 to 46 bands with an average of 24 bands. The number of polymorphic bands detected was from 6 (Atalia population to 37 (Gabsia population. The lowest genetic distance was 0.058 and the highest was 0.655. The average genetic distance was (0.356. The dendrogram based on Ward’s minimum variance clustering method grouped the nine populations into the two main clusters. The first group included Fazania, Atalia, Masratia, Zawia, Denamo Ferade and Arezona. The second group was composed of Tagoria, Gabsia and Wade Alrabeh. The simplicity of RAPD assays for detection of genetic polymorphisms is confirmed in our study, and results can be utilized in breeding practice.

  10. Unraveling the rich phenotypic and genetic diversity in rice for varietal improvement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asian cultivated rice (Oryza sativa L.) has two distinct varietal groups identified as the indica and japonica subspecies. With the advent of molecular markers the indica subspecies was divided into the indica and aus subpopulation groups and the japonica subspecies into the aromatic, tropical japon...

  11. Evolution & Diversity in Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson, Lorentz C.

    1988-01-01

    Summarizes recent findings that help in understanding how evolution has brought about the diversity of plant life that presently exists. Discusses basic concepts of evolution, diversity and classification, the three-line hypothesis of plant evolution, the origin of fungi, and the geologic time table. Included are 31 references. (CW)

  12. Genetic Diversity of Mungbean (Vigna radiata L.) in Iron and Zinc Content as Impacted by Farmers' Varietal Selection in Northern India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Singh, R.; Heusden, van A.W.; Kumar, R.; Visser, R.G.F.; Yadvac, R.C.

    2013-01-01

    From the last few years a debate has been continuing over the issue of malnutrition and hunger in the developing countries. The present article investigates the importance of participatory varietal selection in the development of a suitable cultivar of mungbean along with the nutritional content and

  13. The drivers of plant diversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kristine Engemann

    In this thesis we use a “big data” approach to describe and explain large-scale patterns of plant diversity. The botanical data used for the six papers come from three different databases covering the New World, North America, and Europe respectively. The data on plant distributions were combined...... and beta diversity over time for woody forest communities in North America, using a 20 year forest plot dataset from the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Inventory and Analysis program. To assess functional diversity, we combined the plot data with data on four functional traits. Over time...... with environmental data on climate, soil, topography, and disturbance to identify the drivers of macroecological plant diversity patterns. Unless otherwise stated, the botanical data used in the papers come from the Botanical Information and Ecology Network. Paper I describes how we compiled a new plant growth form...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waldrop, M.P.; Zak, D.R.; Blackwood, C.B.; Curtis, C.D.; Tilman, D.

    2006-01-01

    Despite decades of research, the ecological determinants of microbial diversity remain poorly understood. Here, we test two alternative hypotheses concerning the factors regulating fungal diversity in soil. The first states that higher levels of plant detritus production increase the supply of limiting resources (i.e. organic substrates) thereby increasing fungal diversity. Alternatively, greater plant diversity increases the range of organic substrates entering soil, thereby increasing the number of niches to be filled by a greater array of heterotrophic fungi. These two hypotheses were simultaneously examined in experimental plant communities consisting of one to 16 species that have been maintained for a decade. We used ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis (RISA), in combination with cloning and sequencing, to quantify fungal community composition and diversity within the experimental plant communities. We used soil microbial biomass as a temporally integrated measure of resource supply. Plant diversity was unrelated to fungal diversity, but fungal diversity was a unimodal function of resource supply. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) indicated that plant diversity showed a relationship to fungal community composition, although the occurrence of RISA bands and operational taxonomic units (OTUs) did not differ among the treatments. The relationship between fungal diversity and resource availability parallels similar relationships reported for grasslands, tropical forests, coral reefs, and other biotic communities, strongly suggesting that the same underlying mechanisms determine the diversity of organisms at multiple scales. ?? 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  15. How does pedogenesis drive plant diversity?

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-06-01

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

  17. Distribuição geográfica e diversidade varietal de frutíferas e nozes de clima temperado no Estado de São Paulo Geographic distribution and varietal diversity of temperate fruits and nuts in São Paulo State, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilson Barbosa

    2003-08-01

    Full Text Available Pesquisaram-se, de 1998 a 2002, os locais e as áreas de cultivo, o número de plantas e as principais espécies e cultivares comerciais de frutíferas e nozes de clima temperado do Estado de São Paulo. Para tanto, analisaram-se os dados do Projeto LUPA (Levantamento Censitário de Unidades de Produção Agrícola do Estado de São Paulo e de consultas aos fruticultores de diversas regiões paulistas. Verificou-se a existência de 6 famílias botânicas, 11 gêneros e 12 principais espécies de frutíferas e uma de noz de clima temperado. São elas, em ordem decrescente do número de plantas: videira rústica, videira fina, pessegueiro (incluindo nectarineira, figueira, caquizeiro, nogueira-macadâmia, macieira, ameixeira, pereira européia, pereira asiática, nespereira, quivizeiro e marmeleiro, sendo as duas primeiras responsáveis por 51% de toda a área ocupada com as referidas culturas de clima temperado. Constatou-se que esse segmento da fruticultura está sendo praticado em 9.510 propriedades de 65% dos municípios paulistas, englobando todas as 40 regionais agrícolas da CATI (Coordenadoria de Assistência Técnica e Integral, existentes no Estado. A videira e a pereira foram as únicas culturas que apresentaram mais de uma espécie botânica sendo cultivada comercialmente. Foram detectadas 53 principais cultivares, sendo a cultura do pessegueiro responsável pela maior fonte de diversidade varietal. Considerando as épocas de colheita das frutíferas e nozes pesquisadas, observaram-se produções de frutos em todos os meses do ano, especialmente entre outubro e abril. Registraram-se novos e importantes nichos de cultivo nas regiões de Jales, Presidente Prudente, Barretos e Jaú, com predominância das uvas finas, das pêras asiáticas, dos pêssegos adaptados e da nogueira-macadâmia, respectivamente.During the period of 1998 to 2002 it was investigated, through the LUPA census (Levantamento Censitário de Unidades de Produção Agr

  18. Plant Sterols: Diversity, Biosynthesis, and Physiological Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valitova, J N; Sulkarnayeva, A G; Minibayeva, F V

    2016-08-01

    Sterols, which are isoprenoid derivatives, are structural components of biological membranes. Special attention is now being given not only to their structure and function, but also to their regulatory roles in plants. Plant sterols have diverse composition; they exist as free sterols, sterol esters with higher fatty acids, sterol glycosides, and acylsterol glycosides, which are absent in animal cells. This diversity of types of phytosterols determines a wide spectrum of functions they play in plant life. Sterols are precursors of a group of plant hormones, the brassinosteroids, which regulate plant growth and development. Furthermore, sterols participate in transmembrane signal transduction by forming lipid microdomains. The predominant sterols in plants are β-sitosterol, campesterol, and stigmasterol. These sterols differ in the presence of a methyl or an ethyl group in the side chain at the 24th carbon atom and are named methylsterols or ethylsterols, respectively. The balance between 24-methylsterols and 24-ethylsterols is specific for individual plant species. The present review focuses on the key stages of plant sterol biosynthesis that determine the ratios between the different types of sterols, and the crosstalk between the sterol and sphingolipid pathways. The main enzymes involved in plant sterol biosynthesis are 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase, C24-sterol methyltransferase, and C22-sterol desaturase. These enzymes are responsible for maintaining the optimal balance between sterols. Regulation of the ratios between the different types of sterols and sterols/sphingolipids can be of crucial importance in the responses of plants to stresses.

  19. The evolution of African plant diversity

    OpenAIRE

    Hans Peter Linder

    2014-01-01

    Sub-Saharan Africa includes some 45,000 plant species. The spatial patterns of this diversity have been well explored. We can group the species into a set of biogeographical regions (largely co-incident with regions defined for terrestrial vertebrate groups). Furthermore, we know that the diversity is unevenly distributed, with southern Africa (especially the south-western tip) disproportionally species rich, while the West African interior is disproportionally species poor. However, the ...

  20. Diverse Roles of Strigolactones in Plant Development

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Philip B. Brewer; Hinanit Koltai; Christine A. Beveridge

    2013-01-01

    With the discovery of strigolactones as root exudate signals that trigger parasitic weed seed germination,and then as a branching inhibitor and plant hormone,the next phase of strigolactone research has quickly revealed this hormone class as a major player in optimizing plant growth and development.From the early stages of plant evolution,it seems that strigolactones were involved in enabling plants to modify growth in order to gain advantage in competition with neighboring organisms for limited resources.For example,a moss plant can alter its growth in response to strigolactones emanating from a neighbor.Within a higher plant,strigolactones appear to be involved in controlling the balance of resource distribution via strategic modification of growth and development.Most notably,higher plants that encounter phosphate deficiency increase strigolactone production,which changes root growth and promotes fungal symbiosis to enhance phosphate intake.The shoot also changes by channeling resources away from unessential leaves and branches and into the main stem and root system.This hormonal response is a key adaption that radically alters whole-plant architecture in order to optimize growth and development under diverse environmental conditions.

  1. 7 CFR 51.1906 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... STANDARDS) United States Consumer Standards for Fresh Tomatoes Definitions § 51.1906 Similar varietal characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the tomatoes are alike as to color, i.e., bright...

  2. 7 CFR 51.694 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.694 Section 51.694 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards..., and Arizona) Definitions § 51.694 Similar varietal characteristics. Similar varietal...

  3. 7 CFR 51.1154 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.1154 Section 51.1154 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... varietal characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the fruits in any container...

  4. 7 CFR 51.632 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.632 Section 51.632 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards..., and Arizona) Definitions § 51.632 Similar varietal characteristics. Similar varietal...

  5. 7 CFR 51.567 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.567 Section 51... STANDARDS) United States Standards for Celery Definitions § 51.567 Similar varietal characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the stalks in any package have the same general appearance...

  6. 7 CFR 51.3202 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.3202 Section 51.3202 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... Similar varietal characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the onions in any...

  7. Comparison of second generation open-pollinated, mass control-pollinated, and varietal pine planting stock through 6 years on a North Mississippi site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randall J. Rousseau; Scott D. Roberts; Billy L. Herrin

    2015-01-01

    Landowners face a wide array of loblolly pine genetic material to choose from at the time of regeneration. In general, most opt to plant open-pollinated second-generation stock (second-Gen OP) as previously recommended by either consultants or industry personnel. The goal of this study is to evaluate a selected second-Gen OP family, a selected mass control-pollinated...

  8. 75 FR 11071 - Removal of Varietal Restrictions on Apples from Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-10

    ... Varietal Restrictions on Apples from Japan AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION... variety apples from Japan to allow all varieties of Malus domestica apples into the United States under... of M. domestica apples from Japan to be imported into the United States while continuing to...

  9. Liquid chromatography-quadrupole time of flight tandem mass spectrometry-based targeted metabolomic study for varietal discrimination of grapes according to plant sterols content.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millán, Laura; Sampedro, M Carmen; Sánchez, Alicia; Delporte, Cédric; Van Antwerpen, Pierre; Goicolea, M Aranzazu; Barrio, Ramón J

    2016-07-08

    Grapevine and derived products are rich in a wide range of compounds and its quality mainly depends on its metabolites, as a result of viticulture practices. Plant sterols, also called phytosterols (PS), are secondary metabolites regarded as bioactive substance present in grape berries and other plant-based food. The present study deals with a metabolomic approach focusing on phytosterols family in six varieties of Rioja grapes (Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Graciano, Garnacha, White Garnacha and Viura), in order to find significant differences among them. Liquid chromatography- mass spectrometry with a quadrupole-time of flight mass analyzer (LC-QTOF) was used to find as many metabolites as possible in the different grape berry fractions, and using statistics to help finding significant clustering of the metabolic profile of pulp, peel and seeds in relation to the variety. The best chromatographic and detection conditions were achieved by gas phase ionization via atmospheric pressure chemical ionization (APCI) in positive mode. Furthermore, analysis with electrospray (ESI) is also needed for phytosterol derivatives confirmation. Putative compounds of interest in the analyzed samples were found by an automated compound extraction algorithm (Molecular Feature Extraction, MFE) and an initial differential expression from the data was created with the aid of commercial software. Once the data were collected, the results were filtered, aligned and normalized, and evaluating applying one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) with a 95% significance level. For sample class prediction, partial least square-discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) is used as a supervised pattern recognition method and excellent separation among the grape varieties is shown. An overall accuracy of 93.3% (pulp samples), 100.0% (peel) or 96.7% (seeds) in discriminating between grape varieties was achieved when comparing the different fractions. In general, 7 PS derivatives were identified with ID scores

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shan-Shan Qi

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  12. The evolution of African plant diversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hans Peter Linder

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Sub-Saharan Africa includes some 45,000 plant species. The spatial patterns of this diversity have been well explored. We can group the species into a set of biogeographical regions (largely co-incident with regions defined for terrestrial vertebrate groups. Furthermore, we know that the diversity is unevenly distributed, with southern Africa (especially the south-western tip disproportionally species rich, while the West African interior is disproportionally species poor. However, the origins of this diversity have only been explored for two anomalous African Floras (the Tropic-alpine Flora and the Cape Flora, whereas the origins of the diversity of the other floras are still unknown. Here I argue that six floras, with distinct geographical centres, different extra-African affinities, ages of radiation and radiation rates, can be delimited: the Austro-temperate, Tropic-alpine, Lowland forest, Tropic-montane, Savanna and Arid Floras. The oldest flora may be the Lowland forest Flora, and the most recent is the Tropic-alpine, which probably evolved during the Plio-Pleistocene on the summits of the East Africa volcanoes. My results suggest that the most rapidly radiating flora is the Austro-temperate Flora, while the other floras are all diversifying at more or less the same rate, this is also consistent with the current massive species richness in this flora (about half of the African species richness. The Austro-temperate Flora appears to be related to the floras of the other southern continents, the Tropic-alpine Flora to that of the Northern Hemisphere, and the four tropical floras to the tropical regions of the other continents, consistent with the theory of phylogenetic niche conservatism. Current African diversity may be the result of the sequential adding of new floras to the continent. Possibly the species poverty especially of the Lowland forest Flora may be the result of the spread of C4 grasslands and associated regular fires.

  13. Conservation of Genetic Diversity in Culture Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MAXIM A.

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The most important international document relating to the conservation of biodiversity is one adopted by theUN in Rio de Janeiro (1992 that "Convention on Biodiversity". Based on this agreement, the EU has taken a series ofmeasures to reduce genetic erosion in agriculture, which grew with the expansion of industrialized agriculture.Throughout its existence, mankind has used some 10,000 growing plant species. According to FAO statistics, today,90% of food production is ensured by some 120 growing plant species. In addition to drastic reduction in specificdiversity, the advent of industrialized agriculture has generated a process of strong genetic erosion. Old varieties andlocal varieties of crops have mostly been affected, in favour of "modern" varieties. Landraces are characterized by highheterogenity. They have the advantage of being much better adapted to biotic and abiotic stress conditions (diseases,pests, drought, low in nutrients, etc. and have excellent taste qualities, which can justify a higher price recovery thancommercial varieties. Thanks to these features, these crops need small inputs, which correspond to the concept ofsustainable development. Landraces are an invaluable genetic potential for obtaining new varieties of plants and are bestsuited for crop cultivation in ecological systems, becoming more common. Also, for long term food security in thecontext of global warming, rich genetic diversity will be require. “In situ” and “ex situ” conservation are the two majorstrategies used in the conservation of plant genetic resources. There is a fundamental difference between these twostrategies: “ex situ” conservation involves sampling, transfer and storage of a particular species population away fromthe original location, while “in situ” conservation (in their natural habitat implies that the varieties of interest,management and monitoring their place of origin takes place in the community to which they belong. These

  14. Functionally and phylogenetically diverse plant communities key to soil biota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milcu, Alexandru; Allan, Eric; Roscher, Christiane; Jenkins, Tania; Meyer, Sebastian T; Flynn, Dan; Bessler, Holger; Buscot, François; Engels, Christof; Gubsch, Marlén; König, Stephan; Lipowsky, Annett; Loranger, Jessy; Renker, Carsten; Scherber, Christoph; Schmid, Bernhard; Thébault, Elisa; Wubet, Tesfaye; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Scheu, Stefan; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2013-08-01

    Recent studies assessing the role of biological diversity for ecosystem functioning indicate that the diversity of functional traits and the evolutionary history of species in a community, not the number of taxonomic units, ultimately drives the biodiversity--ecosystem-function relationship. Here, we simultaneously assessed the importance of plant functional trait and phylogenetic diversity as predictors of major trophic groups of soil biota (abundance and diversity), six years from the onset of a grassland biodiversity experiment. Plant functional and phylogenetic diversity were generally better predictors of soil biota than the traditionally used species or functional group richness. Functional diversity was a reliable predictor for most biota, with the exception of soil microorganisms, which were better predicted by phylogenetic diversity. These results provide empirical support for the idea that the diversity of plant functional traits and the diversity of evolutionary lineages in a community are important for maintaining higher abundances and diversity of soil communities.

  15. Cenozoic plant diversity of Yunnan: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yongjiang Huang

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Yunnan in southwestern China is renowned for its high plant diversity. To understand how this modern botanical richness formed, it is critical to investigate the past biodiversity throughout the geological time. In this review, we present a summary on plant diversity, floristics and climates in the Cenozoic of Yunnan and document their changes, by compiling published palaeobotanical sources. Our review demonstrates that thus far a total of 386 fossil species of ferns, gymnosperms and angiosperms belonging to 170 genera within 66 families have been reported from the Cenozoic, particularly the Neogene, of Yunnan. Angiosperms display the highest richness represented by 353 species grouped into 155 genera within 60 families, with Fagaceae, Fabaceae, Lauraceae and Juglandaceae being the most diversified. Most of the families and genera recorded as fossils still occur in Yunnan, but seven genera have disappeared, including Berryophyllum, Cedrelospermum, Cedrus, Palaeocarya, Podocarpium, Sequoia and Wataria. The regional extinction of these genera is commonly referred to an aridification of the dry season associated with Asian monsoon development. Floristic analyses indicate that in the late Miocene, Yunnan had three floristic regions: a northern subtropical floristic region in the northeast, a subtropical floristic region in the east, and a tropical floristic region in the southwest. In the late Pliocene, Yunnan saw two kinds of floristic regions: a subalpine floristic region in the northwest, and two subtropical floristic regions separately in the southwest and the eastern center. These floristic concepts are verified by results from our areal type analyses which suggest that in the Miocene southwestern Yunnan supported the most Pantropic elements, while in the Pliocene southwestern Yunnan had abundant Tropical Asia (Indo–Malaysia type and East Asia and North America disjunct type that were absent from northwestern Yunnan. From the late Miocene to

  16. Effect of plant diversity on the diversity of soil organic compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Moujahid, Lamiae; Michalet, Serge; Bellvert, Florian; Weigelt, Alexandra; Poly, Franck

    2017-01-01

    The effect of plant diversity on aboveground organisms and processes was largely studied but there is still a lack of knowledge regarding the link between plant diversity and soil characteristics. Here, we analyzed the effect of plant identity and diversity on the diversity of extractible soil organic compounds (ESOC) using 87 experimental grassland plots with different levels of plant diversity and based on a pool of over 50 plant species. Two pools of low molecular weight organic compounds, LMW1 and LMW2, were characterized by GC-MS and HPLC-DAD, respectively. These pools include specific organic acids, fatty acids and phenolics, with more organic acids in LMW1 and more phenolics in LMW2. Plant effect on the diversity of LMW1 and LMW2 compounds was strong and weak, respectively. LMW1 richness observed for bare soil was lower than that observed for all planted soils; and the richness of these soil compounds increased twofold when dominant plant species richness increased from 1 to 6. Comparing the richness of LMW1 compounds observed for a range of plant mixtures and for plant monocultures of species present in these mixtures, we showed that plant species richness increases the richness of these ESOC mainly through complementarity effects among plant species associated with contrasted spectra of soil compounds. This could explain previously reported effects of plant diversity on the diversity of soil heterotrophic microorganisms. PMID:28166250

  17. Effect of plant diversity on the diversity of soil organic compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Moujahid, Lamiae; Le Roux, Xavier; Michalet, Serge; Bellvert, Florian; Weigelt, Alexandra; Poly, Franck

    2017-01-01

    The effect of plant diversity on aboveground organisms and processes was largely studied but there is still a lack of knowledge regarding the link between plant diversity and soil characteristics. Here, we analyzed the effect of plant identity and diversity on the diversity of extractible soil organic compounds (ESOC) using 87 experimental grassland plots with different levels of plant diversity and based on a pool of over 50 plant species. Two pools of low molecular weight organic compounds, LMW1 and LMW2, were characterized by GC-MS and HPLC-DAD, respectively. These pools include specific organic acids, fatty acids and phenolics, with more organic acids in LMW1 and more phenolics in LMW2. Plant effect on the diversity of LMW1 and LMW2 compounds was strong and weak, respectively. LMW1 richness observed for bare soil was lower than that observed for all planted soils; and the richness of these soil compounds increased twofold when dominant plant species richness increased from 1 to 6. Comparing the richness of LMW1 compounds observed for a range of plant mixtures and for plant monocultures of species present in these mixtures, we showed that plant species richness increases the richness of these ESOC mainly through complementarity effects among plant species associated with contrasted spectra of soil compounds. This could explain previously reported effects of plant diversity on the diversity of soil heterotrophic microorganisms.

  18. Plant species diversity in a changing agricultural landscape: the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Key words: Coffee plantation, plant species diversity, agroecosystem, vascular plants. Introduction. One of the ... Tbe livestock reared include cattle, goats, sheep, pigs and poultry. ... Assessment of trees, shrubs and grasses. Transects 500 m ...

  19. [Research progress on plant diversity conservation in sand dune areas].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhi-min; Ma, Jun-ling

    2008-01-01

    The landscape in sand dune areas is characterized by the alternate distribution of sand dune and interdune lowland, and the unique floras in these areas are some endemic or rare plant species. In recent years, the decrease in plant species richness and the disappearance of some endemic or rare plant species in these areas have been received special attention, which were listed in the Program of International Biodiversity Conservation, and studied in many countries and districts. In this paper, the research progress in these fields was summarized from the aspects of significance of plant diversity conservation, formation mechanisms of plant diversity, ways of plant diversity conservation, roles of plant diversity research in the development of ecological theories, and important issues in operating plant diversity conservation project. To conserve plant diversity in sand dune areas, attentions should be paid to the differences in conservation goals (to maintain high species richness or to conserve endemic or rare species) among different regions, and the balances between the stabilization of active sand and the conservation of endemic or rare species, and the maintenance of high species richness and the conservation of endemic or rare species. It needed also to consider the sand dune and the interdune lowland as a unified landscape unit to explore the impacts of disturbances and habitat fragment on plant diversity.

  20. Drivers of carabid functional diversity: abiotic environment, plant functional traits, or plant functional diversity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pakeman, Robin J; Stockan, Jenni A

    2014-05-01

    Understanding how community assembly is controlled by the balance of abiotic drivers (environment or management) and biotic drivers (community composition of other groups) is important in predicting the response of ecosystems to environmental change. If there are strong links between plant assemblage structure and carabid beetle functional traits and functional diversity, then it is possible to predict the impact of environmental change propagating through different functional and trophic groups. Vegetation and pitfall trap beetle surveys were carried out across twenty four sites contrasting in land use, and hence productivity and disturbance regime. Plant functional traits were very successful at explaining the distribution of carabid functional traits across the habitats studied. Key carabid response traits appeared to be body length and wing type. Carabid functional richness was significantly smaller than expected, indicating strong environmental filtering, modulated by management, soil characteristics, and by plant response traits. Carabid functional divergence was negatively related to plant functional evenness, while carabid functional evenness was positively correlated to plant functional evenness and richness. The study shows that there are clear trait linkages between the plant and the carabid assemblage that act not only through the mean traits displayed, but also via their distribution in trait space; powerful evidence that both the mean and variance of traits in one trophic group structure the assemblage of another.

  1. Understanding crop genetic diversity under modern plant breeding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Yong-Bi

    2015-11-01

    Maximizing crop yield while at the same time minimizing crop failure for sustainable agriculture requires a better understanding of the impacts of plant breeding on crop genetic diversity. This review identifies knowledge gaps and shows the need for more research into genetic diversity changes under plant breeding. Modern plant breeding has made a profound impact on food production and will continue to play a vital role in world food security. For sustainable agriculture, a compromise should be sought between maximizing crop yield under changing climate and minimizing crop failure under unfavorable conditions. Such a compromise requires better understanding of the impacts of plant breeding on crop genetic diversity. Efforts have been made over the last three decades to assess crop genetic diversity using molecular marker technologies. However, these assessments have revealed some temporal diversity patterns that are largely inconsistent with our perception that modern plant breeding reduces crop genetic diversity. An attempt was made in this review to explain such discrepancies by examining empirical assessments of crop genetic diversity and theoretical investigations of genetic diversity changes over time under artificial selection. It was found that many crop genetic diversity assessments were not designed to assess diversity impacts from specific plant breeding programs, while others were experimentally inadequate and contained technical biases from the sampling of cultivars and genomes. Little attention has been paid to theoretical investigations on crop genetic diversity changes from plant breeding. A computer simulation of five simplified breeding schemes showed the substantial effects of plant breeding on the retention of heterozygosity over generations. It is clear that more efforts are needed to investigate crop genetic diversity in space and time under plant breeding to achieve sustainable crop production.

  2. SPECIES DIVERSITY OF LONG GOURD LAGENARIA SICERARIA (MOLINA STANDL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsatsenko L. V.

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The issues of international spread of fruits of long gourd lagenaria and the introduction of it in culture are considered in the article. We have shown how to use it as a vegetable crop and considered varietal diversity of this species. The biological characteristics of lagenaria cultivation as vegetable plants, including peculiarities of the reproductive system have been marked. We have also considered the issues of cultivation and distribution of long gourd lagenaria (zycca for food

  3. Resilience of Amazon forests emerges from plant trait diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakschewski, Boris; von Bloh, Werner; Boit, Alice; Poorter, Lourens; Peña-Claros, Marielos; Heinke, Jens; Joshi, Jasmin; Thonicke, Kirsten

    2016-11-01

    Climate change threatens ecosystems worldwide, yet their potential future resilience remains largely unquantified. In recent years many studies have shown that biodiversity, and in particular functional diversity, can enhance ecosystem resilience by providing a higher response diversity. So far these insights have been mostly neglected in large-scale projections of ecosystem responses to climate change. Here we show that plant trait diversity, as a key component of functional diversity, can have a strikingly positive effect on the Amazon forests' biomass under future climate change. Using a terrestrial biogeochemical model that simulates diverse forest communities on the basis of individual tree growth, we show that plant trait diversity may enable the Amazon forests to adjust to new climate conditions via a process of ecological sorting, protecting the Amazon's carbon sink function. Therefore, plant trait diversity, and biodiversity in general, should be considered in large-scale ecosystem projections and be included as an integral part of climate change research and policy.

  4. Mutualistic rhizobia reduce plant diversity and alter community composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keller, Kane R

    2014-12-01

    Mutualistic interactions can be just as important to community dynamics as antagonistic species interactions like competition and predation. Because of their large effects on both abiotic and biotic environmental variables, resource mutualisms, in particular, have the potential to influence plant communities. Moreover, the effects of resource mutualists such as nitrogen-fixing rhizobia on diversity and community composition may be more pronounced in nutrient-limited environments. I experimentally manipulated the presence of rhizobia across a nitrogen gradient in early assembling mesocosm communities with identical starting species composition to test how the classic mutualism between nitrogen-fixing rhizobia and their legume host influence diversity and community composition. After harvest, I assessed changes in α-diversity, community composition, β-diversity, and ecosystem properties such as inorganic nitrogen availability and productivity as a result of rhizobia and nitrogen availability. The presence of rhizobia decreased plant community diversity, increased community convergence (reduced β-diversity), altered plant community composition, and increased total community productivity. These community-level effects resulted from rhizobia increasing the competitive dominance of their legume host Chamaecrista fasciculata. Moreover, different non-leguminous species responded both negatively and positively to the presence of rhizobia, indicating that rhizobia are driving both inhibitory and potentially facilitative effects in communities. These findings expand our understanding of plant communities by incorporating the effects of positive symbiotic interactions on plant diversity and composition. In particular, rhizobia that specialize on dominant plants may serve as keystone mutualists in terrestrial plant communities, reducing diversity by more than 40%.

  5. Diversity and distribution of higher plants in Yunnan, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Chen

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Yunnan Province is a biodiversity hotspot in China that has global significance. In order to further recognize and protect the biodiversity of Yunnan, we examined the basic distributional pattern of its plant diversity based on Flora Yunnanica. According to our analysis, Northwest Yunnan had the highest plant diversity, with Yulong County the most diverse, containing 4,358 species of higher plants, followed by Gongshan County and Xianggelila County, which had 3,981 and 3,874 higher plants respectively. The tropical edge region of southern Yunnan, represented by Xishuangbanna, had the second highest level of diversity, with Mengla County and Jinghong County containing more than 3,000 higher plant species. In contrast, the plant diversity of Eastern and Central Yunnan, comprising mainly the Yunnan Plateau, was deemed relatively poor, possibly reflecting lower attention and field surveys by botanists. Both the distribution patterns of endemic and narrow-ranging species were similar to that for all plants. Yunnan contains 4,008 endemic and 4,509 narrow-ranging species with Gongshan County being most diverse, having more than 500 narrow-ranging species. Most species (64.1% were distributed in less than five counties in Yunnan, and 46.0% could only be found in one. Our analysis reveals that previous field surveys of Yunnan’s plant diversity did not fully reflect the natural zonal regularity and consequently further investigation is warranted. Some narrow-ranging species will be endangered without protection.

  6. Functionally and phylogenetically diverse plant communities key to soil biota

    OpenAIRE

    Milcu, Alexandru; Allan, Eric; Roscher, Christiane; Jenkins, Tania; Sebastian T Meyer; Flynn, Dan; Bessler, Holger; Buscot, François; Engels, Christof; Gubsch, Marlén; König, Stephan; Lipowsky, Annett; Loranger, Jessy; Renker, Carsten; Scherber, Christoph

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies assessing the role of biological diversity for ecosystem functioning indicate that the diversity of functional traits and the evolutionary history of species in a community, not the number of taxonomic units, ultimately drives the biodiversity–ecosystem-function relationship. Here, we simultaneously assessed the importance of plant functional trait and phylogenetic diversity as predictors of major trophic groups of soil biota (abundance and diversity), six years from the onset ...

  7. 7 CFR 51.1864 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... STANDARDS) United States Standards for Fresh Tomatoes 1 Definitions § 51.1864 Similar varietal characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the tomatoes are alike as to firmness of flesh and shade of color (for example, soft-fleshed, early maturing varieties are not mixed with...

  8. 7 CFR 51.603 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.603 Section 51.603 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the stalks in any container have the same...

  9. 7 CFR 51.1550 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.1550 Section 51.1550 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the potatoes in any lot have the same general...

  10. 7 CFR 51.2756 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.2756 Section 51.2756 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the peanut kernels in the lot are not of...

  11. 7 CFR 51.2714 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.2714 Section 51.2714 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the peanut kernels in the lot are not of...

  12. 7 CFR 51.763 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.763 Section 51.763 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the fruits in any container are similar in color...

  13. 7 CFR 51.2116 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.2116 Section 51.2116 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the kernels are similar in shape and appearance....

  14. 7 CFR 51.2650 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.2650 Section 51.2650 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the cherries in any container are similar in...

  15. 7 CFR 51.3057 - Similar varietal characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Similar varietal characteristics. 51.3057 Section 51.3057 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... characteristics. Similar varietal characteristics means that the avocados in any container are similar in...

  16. Plant diversity effects on root decomposition in grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Hongmei; Mommer, Liesje; van Ruijven, Jasper; de Kroon, Hans; Gessler, Arthur; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Wirth, Christian; Weigelt, Alexandra

    2016-04-01

    Loss of plant diversity impairs ecosystem functioning. Compared to other well-studied processes, we know little about whether and how plant diversity affects root decomposition, which is limiting our knowledge on biodiversity-carbon cycling relationships in the soil. Plant diversity potentially affects root decomposition via two non-exclusive mechanisms: by providing roots of different substrate quality and/or by altering the soil decomposition environment. To disentangle these two mechanisms, three decomposition experiments using a litter-bag approach were conducted on experimental grassland plots differing in plant species richness, functional group richness and functional group composition (e.g. presence/absence of grasses, legumes, small herbs and tall herbs, the Jena Experiment). We studied: 1) root substrate quality effects by decomposing roots collected from the different experimental plant communities in one common plot; 2) soil decomposition environment effects by decomposing standard roots in all experimental plots; and 3) the overall plant diversity effects by decomposing community roots in their 'home' plots. Litter bags were installed in April 2014 and retrieved after 1, 2 and 4 months to determine the mass loss. We found that mass loss decreased with increasing plant species richness, but not with functional group richness in the three experiments. However, functional group presence significantly affected mass loss with primarily negative effects of the presence of grasses and positive effects of the presence of legumes and small herbs. Our results thus provide clear evidence that species richness has a strong negative effect on root decomposition via effects on both root substrate quality and soil decomposition environment. This negative plant diversity-root decomposition relationship may partly account for the positive effect of plant diversity on soil C stocks by reducing C loss in addition to increasing primary root productivity. However, to fully

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-05-22

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

  18. Distribution and diversity of climbing plants in temperate East Asia

    OpenAIRE

    Liang Hu

    2011-01-01

    The composition and geographic distribution of climbing plants are important aspects of ecological study, but research on temperate climbing plants is relatively limited. We compared the family and genera- level composition, floristic element type, growth forms, diversity and geographical distribution of climbing plants in nine districts of temperate East Asia, including Northeast China, Japan, Mongolia and the Korean Peninsula. A total of 304 climbing plant species were documented, belonging...

  19. Probiotic Diversity Enhances Rhizosphere Microbiome Function and Plant Disease Suppression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Hu

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial communities associated with plant roots play an important role in the suppression of soil-borne pathogens, and multispecies probiotic consortia may enhance disease suppression efficacy. Here we introduced defined Pseudomonas species consortia into naturally complex microbial communities and measured the importance of Pseudomonas community diversity for their survival and the suppression of the bacterial plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum in the tomato rhizosphere microbiome. The survival of introduced Pseudomonas consortia increased with increasing diversity. Further, high Pseudomonas diversity reduced pathogen density in the rhizosphere and decreased the disease incidence due to both intensified resource competition and interference with the pathogen. These results provide novel mechanistic insights into elevated pathogen suppression by diverse probiotic consortia in naturally diverse plant rhizospheres. Ecologically based community assembly rules could thus play a key role in engineering functionally reliable microbiome applications.

  20. Benefits of increasing plant diversity in sustainable agroecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recent studies have revealed many potential benefits of increasing plant diversity in agroecosystems and production forests, including enhancing yields of crops, forage, and wood; stabilizing yields across time and space; enhancing pollinators and pollination; suppressing weeds and other pests; and ...

  1. Plant diversity in the homegardens of Karwar, Karnataka, India

    OpenAIRE

    SHIVANAND BHAT; M. JAYAKARA BHANDARY; L. Rajanna

    2014-01-01

    Bhat S, Bhandary MJ, Rajanna L. 2014. Plant diversity in the homegardens of Karwar, Karnataka, India. Biodiversitas 15: 229-235. A study was conducted in 50 selected home gardens of Karwar, Karnataka, India to document their floristic diversity and composition with regard to life forms and uses. As many as 210 species of flowering plants belonging to 69 families were recorded. Euphorbiaceae (13species), Apocynaceae (11spp.), Cucurbitaceae (10 spp.) and Fabaceae (10 spp.) are the predominant f...

  2. Coevolution can explain defensive secondary metabolite diversity in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speed, Michael P; Fenton, Andy; Jones, Meriel G; Ruxton, Graeme D; Brockhurst, Michael A

    2015-12-01

    Many plant species produce defensive compounds that are often highly diverse within and between populations. The genetic and cellular mechanisms by which metabolite diversity is produced are increasingly understood, but the evolutionary explanations for persistent diversification in plant secondary metabolites have received less attention. Here we consider the role of plant-herbivore coevolution in the maintenance and characteristics of diversity in plant secondary metabolites. We present a simple model in which plants can evolve to invest in a range of defensive toxins, and herbivores can evolve resistance to these toxins. We allow either single-species evolution or reciprocal coevolution. Our model shows that coevolution maintains toxin diversity within populations. Furthermore, there is a fundamental coevolutionary asymmetry between plants and their herbivores, because herbivores must resist all plant toxins, whereas plants need to challenge and nullify only one resistance trait. As a consequence, average plant fitness increases and insect fitness decreases as number of toxins increases. When costs apply, the model showed both arms race escalation and strong coevolutionary fluctuation in toxin concentrations across time. We discuss the results in the context of other evolutionary explanations for secondary metabolite diversification.

  3. Management intensity and topography determined plant diversity in vineyards.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juri Nascimbene

    Full Text Available Vineyards are amongst the most intensive forms of agriculture often resulting in simplified landscapes where semi-natural vegetation is restricted to small scattered patches. However, a tendency toward a more sustainable management is stimulating research on biodiversity in these poorly investigated agro-ecosystems. The main aim of this study was to test the effect on plant diversity of management intensity and topography in vineyards located in a homogenous intensive hilly landscape. Specifically, this study evaluated the role of slope, mowing and herbicide treatments frequency, and nitrogen supply in shaping plant diversity and composition of life-history traits. The study was carried out in 25 vineyards located in the area of the Conegliano-Valdobbiadene DOCG (Veneto, NE Italy. In each vineyard, 10 plots were placed and the abundance of all vascular plants was recorded in each plot. Linear multiple regression was used to test the effect of management and topography on plant diversity. Management intensity and topography were both relevant drivers of plant species diversity patterns in our vineyards. The two most important factors were slope and mowing frequency that respectively yielded positive and negative effects on plant diversity. A significant interaction between these two factors was also demonstrated, warning against the detrimental effects of increasing mowing intensity on steep slope where plant communities are more diverse. The response of plant communities to mowing frequency is mediated by a process of selection of resistant growth forms, such in the case of rosulate and reptant species. The other two management-related factors tested in this study, number of herbicide treatments and N fertilization, were less influential. In general, our study corroborates the idea that some simple changes in farming activities, which are compatible with grape production, should be encouraged for improving the natural and cultural value of the

  4. Management intensity and topography determined plant diversity in vineyards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nascimbene, Juri; Marini, Lorenzo; Ivan, Diego; Zottini, Michela

    2013-01-01

    Vineyards are amongst the most intensive forms of agriculture often resulting in simplified landscapes where semi-natural vegetation is restricted to small scattered patches. However, a tendency toward a more sustainable management is stimulating research on biodiversity in these poorly investigated agro-ecosystems. The main aim of this study was to test the effect on plant diversity of management intensity and topography in vineyards located in a homogenous intensive hilly landscape. Specifically, this study evaluated the role of slope, mowing and herbicide treatments frequency, and nitrogen supply in shaping plant diversity and composition of life-history traits. The study was carried out in 25 vineyards located in the area of the Conegliano-Valdobbiadene DOCG (Veneto, NE Italy). In each vineyard, 10 plots were placed and the abundance of all vascular plants was recorded in each plot. Linear multiple regression was used to test the effect of management and topography on plant diversity. Management intensity and topography were both relevant drivers of plant species diversity patterns in our vineyards. The two most important factors were slope and mowing frequency that respectively yielded positive and negative effects on plant diversity. A significant interaction between these two factors was also demonstrated, warning against the detrimental effects of increasing mowing intensity on steep slope where plant communities are more diverse. The response of plant communities to mowing frequency is mediated by a process of selection of resistant growth forms, such in the case of rosulate and reptant species. The other two management-related factors tested in this study, number of herbicide treatments and N fertilization, were less influential. In general, our study corroborates the idea that some simple changes in farming activities, which are compatible with grape production, should be encouraged for improving the natural and cultural value of the landscape by

  5. Relationship between Soil Properties and Plant Diversity in Semiarid Grassland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melda Dölarslan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In ecological studies, soil-plant interaction is an important environmental factor. Soil chemical and physical properties affect plant richness and diversity. This study was carried out to investigate the relationship between soil physical and chemical properties, and plant diversity indexes (Shannon-Weiner and Simpson in semiarid grassland. Plant diversity indexes and soil properties were determined using 34 quadrats (5x5m on different parent materials (chrome, marble, serpentine, red chalk and red chalk mostra in semiarid grasslands in the Central Anatolia Region in Turkey. Plant samples were collected and recorded periodically from April to September (the vegetation period in 2014 for each quadrat. In order to determine the plant richness and diversity indexes, 3 sub-quadrats (1x1m were randomly added into each of 34 (5x5 m quadrats. To evaluate the relationship between plant diversity indexes and soil properties, composite soil samples were collected from the four corners, and the center of each quadrat 0-30 cm in depth, and which was mixing of those subsamples. Soil sand-silt-clay contents, soil reaction (pH, bulk density (BD, electrical conductivity (EC, CaCO3 and soil organic matter (SOM contents were measured. Relationship between plant diversity indexes measured in different months during vegetation period and soil properties of different parent material was statistically analysed using correlation analysis in SPSS 20.0. Modest correlation coefficient was found between the Simpson diversity index and SOM content, sand-silt-clay content, pH and EC for different months in vegetation period.

  6. Forest climbing plants of West Africa: diversity, ecology and management

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bongers, F.J.J.M.; Parren, M.P.E.; Traoré, D.

    2005-01-01

    Climbing plants, including lianas, represent a fascinating component of the ecology of tropical forests. This book focuses on the climbing plants of West African forests. Based on original research, it presents information on the flora (including a checklist), diversity (with overviews at several le

  7. Diversity and bioprospecting of actinomycete endophytes from the medicinal plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nalini, M S; Prakash, H S

    2017-04-01

    The endophytic actinomycetes constitute one of the fascinating group of microorganisms associated with a wide range of plant species. The diversity of actinomycetes in plants and their tissue parts is a matter of debate as no consensus are derived between individual studies. Nevertheless, their diversity correlates with the occurrence in plant species harboured in unique regions of biologically diverse areas called "hot spots." Recent advances in the isolation techniques have facilitated the isolation of rare taxa from these environments. The biosynthetic ability of the endophytic actinomycetes has proven beyond doubt that these organisms have the potential to synthesize an array of compounds with novelty in structure and bioactivity and as a result are preferred in the natural product screening programs. In the years to come, the scientific world may await to discover many more novel actinomycete taxa with metabolic diversity and applications in therapeutics.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lekberg, Ylva; Gibbons, Sean; Rosendahl, Søren;

    2013-01-01

    Invasions by non-native plants can alter ecosystem functions and reduce native plant diversity, but relatively little is known about their effect on belowground microbial communities. We show that invasions by knapweed (Centaurea stoebe) and leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula, hereafter spurge)-but no...... plant provenance.The ISME Journal advance online publication, 14 March 2013; doi:10.1038/ismej.2013.41....

  9. Diversity and use of ethnomedicinal plants in coastal Karnataka, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. JAYAKARA BHANDARY

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Bhandary MJ, Chandrashekar KR. 2014. Diversity and use of ethnomedicinal plants in coastal Karnataka, India. Biodiversitas 15: 89-93. A study was undertaken in Coastal Karnataka, a culturally and floristically diverse region between the Western Ghats and the Arabian sea in India, to document the diversity and uses of ethnomedicinal plants of the area. This study resulted in the documentation of ethnomedicinal uses of 342 species of plants belonging to 34 families. The dominant families of ethnomedicinal plants were: Fabaceae (38 species, Euphorbiaceae (22 species, Rubiaceae (11 species, Acanthaceae, Asteraceae, Apocynaceae and Rutaceae (10 species each. Among the plants used, 30% are herbs, 27% trees, 25% climbers and 18% shrubs. Majority of the plants are used against several diseases, either alone or in combination with other plants. The most popular medicinal plants, in terms of the number of diseases against which they are used, are Cyclea peltata, Aristolochia indica, Cuminum cyminum, Curcuma longa, Tamarindus indica, Asparagus racemosus, Ficus racemosa, Hemidesmus indicus, Ficus religiosa, Calotropis gigantea, Vitex negundo, Aegle marmelos and Leucas aspera. A list of 50 important ethnomedicinal plants of the region which are used in the treatment of 5 or more disorders is provided.

  10. Accelerating global access to plant diversity information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lughadha, Eimear Nic; Miller, Chuck

    2009-11-01

    Botanic gardens play key roles in the development and dissemination of plant information resources. Drivers for change have included progress in information technology, growing public expectations of electronic access and international conservation policy. Great advances have been made in the quantity, quality and accessibility of plant information in digital form and the extent to which information from multiple providers can be accessed through a single portal. However, significant challenges remain to be addressed in making botanic gardens resources maximally accessible and impactful, not least the overwhelming volume of material which still awaits digitisation. The year 2010 represents an opportunity for botanic gardens to showcase their collaborative achievements in delivery of electronic plant information and reinforce their relevance to pressing environmental issues.

  11. plant diversity, vegetation structure and relationship between plant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Preferred Customer

    analyses of five Afromontane forests altogether revealed 118 families and 653 vascular plant species; ... structure in the moist evergreen Afromontane forest ..... gradient of complex environmental factors. The .... other tropical montane forests.

  12. Plant Diversity Surpasses Plant Functional Groups and Plant Productivity as Driver of Soil Biota in the Long Term

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eisenhauer, Nico; Milcu, Alexandru; Sabais, Alexander C. W.; Bessler, Holger; Brenner, Johanna; Engels, Christof; Klarner, Bernhard; Maraun, Mark; Partsch, Stephan; Roscher, Christiane; Schonert, Felix; Temperton, Vicky M.; Thomisch, Karolin; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W.; Scheu, Stefan

    2011-01-01

    Background One of the most significant consequences of contemporary global change is the rapid decline of biodiversity in many ecosystems. Knowledge of the consequences of biodiversity loss in terrestrial ecosystems is largely restricted to single ecosystem functions. Impacts of key plant functional groups on soil biota are considered to be more important than those of plant diversity; however, current knowledge mainly relies on short-term experiments. Methodology/Principal Findings We studied changes in the impacts of plant diversity and presence of key functional groups on soil biota by investigating the performance of soil microorganisms and soil fauna two, four and six years after the establishment of model grasslands. The results indicate that temporal changes of plant community effects depend on the trophic affiliation of soil animals: plant diversity effects on decomposers only occurred after six years, changed little in herbivores, but occurred in predators after two years. The results suggest that plant diversity, in terms of species and functional group richness, is the most important plant community property affecting soil biota, exceeding the relevance of plant above- and belowground productivity and the presence of key plant functional groups, i.e. grasses and legumes, with the relevance of the latter decreasing in time. Conclusions/Significance Plant diversity effects on biota are not only due to the presence of key plant functional groups or plant productivity highlighting the importance of diverse and high-quality plant derived resources, and supporting the validity of the singular hypothesis for soil biota. Our results demonstrate that in the long term plant diversity essentially drives the performance of soil biota questioning the paradigm that belowground communities are not affected by plant diversity and reinforcing the importance of biodiversity for ecosystem functioning. PMID:21249208

  13. Plant diversity surpasses plant functional groups and plant productivity as driver of soil biota in the long term.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nico Eisenhauer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: One of the most significant consequences of contemporary global change is the rapid decline of biodiversity in many ecosystems. Knowledge of the consequences of biodiversity loss in terrestrial ecosystems is largely restricted to single ecosystem functions. Impacts of key plant functional groups on soil biota are considered to be more important than those of plant diversity; however, current knowledge mainly relies on short-term experiments. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We studied changes in the impacts of plant diversity and presence of key functional groups on soil biota by investigating the performance of soil microorganisms and soil fauna two, four and six years after the establishment of model grasslands. The results indicate that temporal changes of plant community effects depend on the trophic affiliation of soil animals: plant diversity effects on decomposers only occurred after six years, changed little in herbivores, but occurred in predators after two years. The results suggest that plant diversity, in terms of species and functional group richness, is the most important plant community property affecting soil biota, exceeding the relevance of plant above- and belowground productivity and the presence of key plant functional groups, i.e. grasses and legumes, with the relevance of the latter decreasing in time. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Plant diversity effects on biota are not only due to the presence of key plant functional groups or plant productivity highlighting the importance of diverse and high-quality plant derived resources, and supporting the validity of the singular hypothesis for soil biota. Our results demonstrate that in the long term plant diversity essentially drives the performance of soil biota questioning the paradigm that belowground communities are not affected by plant diversity and reinforcing the importance of biodiversity for ecosystem functioning.

  14. Evolution and diversity of green plant cell walls.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popper, Zoë A

    2008-06-01

    Plant cells are surrounded by a dynamic cell wall that performs many essential biological roles, including regulation of cell expansion, the control of tissue cohesion, ion-exchange and defence against microbes. Recent evidence shows that the suite of polysaccharides and wall proteins from which the plant cell wall is composed shows variation between monophyletic plant taxa. This is likely to have been generated during the evolution of plant groups in response to environmental stress. Understanding the natural variation and diversity that exists between cell walls from different taxa is key to facilitating their future exploitation and manipulation, for example by increasing lignocellulosic content or reducing its recalcitrance for use in biofuel generation.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hakkenberg, C.

    2014-12-01

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

  17. Diversity begets diversity: host expansions and the diversification of plant-feeding insects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nylin Sören

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plant-feeding insects make up a large part of earth's total biodiversity. While it has been shown that herbivory has repeatedly led to increased diversification rates in insects, there has been no compelling explanation for how plant-feeding has promoted speciation rates. There is a growing awareness that ecological factors can lead to rapid diversification and, as one of the most prominent features of most insect-plant interactions, specialization onto a diverse resource has often been assumed to be the main process behind this diversification. However, specialization is mainly a pruning process, and is not able to actually generate diversity by itself. Here we investigate the role of host colonizations in generating insect diversity, by testing if insect speciation rate is correlated with resource diversity. Results By applying a variant of independent contrast analysis, specially tailored for use on questions of species richness (MacroCAIC, we show that species richness is strongly correlated with diversity of host use in the butterfly family Nymphalidae. Furthermore, by comparing the results from reciprocal sister group selection, where sister groups were selected either on the basis of diversity of host use or species richness, we find that it is likely that diversity of host use is driving species richness, rather than vice versa. Conclusion We conclude that resource diversity is correlated with species richness in the Nymphalidae and suggest a scenario based on recurring oscillations between host expansions – the incorporation of new plants into the repertoire – and specialization, as an important driving force behind the diversification of plant-feeding insects.

  18. Vascular plant diversity of the Paracel Islands, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Tong

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The Paracel Islands (Xisha Islands comprise a group of tropical islands that are located south of mainland China and have a particular natural flora. Based on a literature search and our own investigations, we present here a checklist of plants for 24 of the Paracel Islands. We also report an analysis of plant diversity, its distribution and relationship with that of neighboring regions. A total of 396 vascular plants were recorded which belonged to 262 genera and 85 families. Of these, 220 were wild species and 176 were cultivated. As a whole, the islands do not possess a rich flora; however, there are major differences in plant diversity among islands. The flora consists in large part of tropical elements, typical of tropical coral islands of China. The flora is most closely connected to that of Hainan Island, and closely related to those of Taiwan of China, Indochina, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.

  19. Probiotic Diversity Enhances Rhizosphere Microbiome Function and Plant Disease Suppression

    OpenAIRE

    Hu, Jie; Wei, Zhong; Friman, Ville Petri; Gu, Shao-Hua; Wang, Xiao-Fang; Eisenhauer, Nico; Yang, Tian-jie; Ma, Jing; Shen, Qi-Rong; Xu, Yang-chun; Jousset, Alexandre

    2016-01-01

    Bacterial communities associated with plant roots play an important role in the suppression of soil-borne pathogens, and multispecies probiotic consortia may enhance disease suppression efficacy. Here we introduced defined Pseudomonas species consortia into naturally complex microbial communities and measured the importance of Pseudomonas community diversity for their survival and the suppression of the bacterial plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum in the tomato rhizosphere microbiome. The ...

  20. Advanced technologies for plant cell wall evolution and diversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fangel, Jonatan Ulrik

    Plant cell walls consist of polysaccharides, glycoproteins and phenolic polymers interlinked together in a highly complex network. The detailed analysis of cell walls is challenging because of their inherent complexity and heterogeneity. Also, complex carbohydrates, unlike proteins and nucleotide...... angiosperms. This analysis has enabled cell wall diversity to be placed in a phylogenetic context, and, when integrated with transcriptomic and genomic analysis has contributed to our understanding of important aspects of plant evolution....

  1. Plant Sterol Diversity in Pollen from Angiosperms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villette, Claire; Berna, Anne; Compagnon, Vincent; Schaller, Hubert

    2015-08-01

    Here we have examined the composition of free sterols and steryl esters of pollen from selected angiosperm species, as a first step towards a comprehensive analysis of sterol biogenesis in the male gametophyte. We detected four major sterol structural groups: cycloartenol derivatives bearing a 9β,19-cyclopropyl group, sterols with a double bond at C-7(8), sterols with a double bond at C-5(6), and stanols. All these groups were unequally distributed among species. However, the distribution of sterols as free sterols or as steryl esters in pollen grains indicated that free sterols were mostly Δ(5)-sterols and that steryl esters were predominantly 9β,19-cyclopropyl sterols. In order to link the sterol composition of a pollen grain at anthesis with the requirement for membrane lipid constituents of the pollen tube, we germinated pollen grains from Nicotiana tabacum, a model plant in reproductive biology. In the presence of radiolabelled mevalonic acid and in a time course series of measurements, we showed that cycloeucalenol was identified as the major neosynthesized sterol. Furthermore, the inhibition of cycloeucalenol neosynthesis by squalestatin was in full agreement with a de novo biogenesis and an apparent truncated pathway in the pollen tube.

  2. Diversity and distribution of medicinal plants in North Sinai, Egypt

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Administrator

    2008-07-22

    Jul 22, 2008 ... Key words: Conservation, diversity, habitats, human impacts, medicinal plants, vegetation. INTRODUCTION ... of which 279 were recorded in the Mediterranean coastal ... graphic location (latitude and longitude), and altitude were recorded ... were selected in inland district, the transition zone between the.

  3. Plant evolution: pulses of extinction and speciation in gymnosperm diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Charles C; Schaefer, Hanno

    2011-12-20

    Living gymnosperms represent the survivors of ancient seed plant lineages whose fossil record reaches back 270 million years. Two recent studies find that recent pulses of extinction and speciation have shaped today's gymnosperm diversity, contradicting the widespread assumption that gymnosperms have remained largely unchanged for tens of millions of years.

  4. Local Plant Diversity Across Multiple Habitats Supports a Diverse Wild Bee Community in Pennsylvania Apple Orchards.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kammerer, Melanie A; Biddinger, David J; Rajotte, Edwin G; Mortensen, David A

    2016-02-01

    Wild pollinators supply essential, historically undervalued pollination services to crops and other flowering plant communities with great potential to ensure agricultural production against the loss of heavily relied upon managed pollinators. Local plant communities provision wild bees with crucial floral and nesting resources, but the distribution of floristic diversity among habitat types in North American agricultural landscapes and its effect on pollinators are diverse and poorly understood, especially in orchard systems. We documented floristic diversity in typical mid-Atlantic commercial apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) orchards including the forest and orchard-forest edge ("edge") habitats surrounding orchards in a heterogeneous landscape in south-central Pennsylvania, USA. We also assessed the correlation between plant richness and orchard pollinator communities. In this apple production region, edge habitats are the most species rich, supporting 146 out of 202 plant species recorded in our survey. Plant species richness in the orchard and edge habitats were significant predictors of bee species richness and abundance in the orchard, as well as landscape area of the forest and edge habitats. Both the quantity and quality of forest and edges close to orchards play a significant role in provisioning a diverse wild bee community in this agroecosystem.

  5. Coupling of soil prokaryotic diversity and plant diversity across latitudinal forest ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jun-Tao; Zheng, Yuan-Ming; Hu, Hang-Wei; Li, Jing; Zhang, Li-Mei; Chen, Bao-Dong; Chen, Wei-Ping; He, Ji-Zheng

    2016-01-01

    The belowground soil prokaryotic community plays a cardinal role in sustaining the stability and functions of forest ecosystems. Yet, the nature of how soil prokaryotic diversity co-varies with aboveground plant diversity along a latitudinal gradient remains elusive. By establishing three hundred 400-m2 quadrats from tropical rainforest to boreal forest in a large-scale parallel study on both belowground soil prokaryote and aboveground tree and herb communities, we found that soil prokaryotic diversity couples with the diversity of herbs rather than trees. The diversity of prokaryotes and herbs responds similarly to environmental factors along the latitudinal gradient. These findings revealed that herbs provide a good predictor of belowground biodiversity in forest ecosystems, and provide new perspective on the aboveground and belowground interactions in forest ecosystems.

  6. Plant diversity in the homegardens of Karwar, Karnataka, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SHIVANAND BHAT

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Bhat S, Bhandary MJ, Rajanna L. 2014. Plant diversity in the homegardens of Karwar, Karnataka, India. Biodiversitas 15: 229-235. A study was conducted in 50 selected home gardens of Karwar, Karnataka, India to document their floristic diversity and composition with regard to life forms and uses. As many as 210 species of flowering plants belonging to 69 families were recorded. Euphorbiaceae (13species, Apocynaceae (11spp., Cucurbitaceae (10 spp. and Fabaceae (10 spp. are the predominant families. Shrubs are the dominant life forms (73 spp. followed by trees (61 spp., herbs (42 spp. and climbers (24 spp.. Areca palm (Areca catechu, coconut palm (Cocos nucifera, mango tree (Mangifera indica, banana (Musa paradisiaca, shoe flower (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis and holy basil (Ocimum tenuiflorum are the most common plants occurring in all of the 50 studied gardens. 38% of the plant species are grown mainly for ornamental and aesthetic purposes while 33% of the species are used for obtaining food products like fruits and vegetables and 22% of the plants are mainly used for medicinal purposes. The predominance of ornamental species makes the home gardens of Karwar different from those occurring in other regions in which mostly food plants form the major component.

  7. The microbiome of medicinal plants: diversity and importance for plant growth, quality and health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina eKöberl

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Past medicinal plant research primarily focused on bioactive phytochemicals, however the focus is currently shifting due to the recognition that a significant number of phytotherapeutic compounds are actually produced by associated microbes or through interaction with their host. Medicinal plants provide an enormous bioresource of potential use in modern medicine and agriculture, yet their microbiome is largely unknown. The objective of this review is i to introduce novel insights into the plant microbiome with a focus on medicinal plants, ii to provide details about plant- and microbe-derived ingredients of medicinal plants, and iii to discuss possibilities for plant growth promotion and plant protection for commercial cultivation of medicinal plants. In addition, we also present a case study performed both to analyse the microbiome of three medicinal plants (Matricaria chamomilla L., Calendula officinalis L. and Solanum distichum Schumach. and Thonn. cultivated on organically managed Egyptian desert farm and to develop biological control strategies. The soil microbiome of the desert ecosystem was comprised of a high abundance of Gram-positive bacteria of prime importance for pathogen suppression under arid soil conditions. For all three plants, we observed a clearly plant-specific selection of the microbes as well as highly specific diazotrophic communities that overall identify plant species as important drivers in structural and functional diversity. Lastly, native Bacillus spec. div. strains were able to promote plant growth and elevate the plants’ flavonoid production. These results underline the numerous links between the plant-associated microbiome and the plant metabolome.

  8. Uncovering unseen fungal diversity from plant DNA banks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin M. Datlof

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Throughout the world DNA banks are used as storage repositories for genetic diversity of organisms ranging from plants to insects to mammals. Designed to preserve the genetic information for organisms of interest, these banks also indirectly preserve organisms’ associated microbiomes, including fungi associated with plant tissues. Studies of fungal biodiversity lag far behind those of macroorganisms, such as plants, and estimates of global fungal richness are still widely debated. Utilizing previously collected specimens to study patterns of fungal diversity could significantly increase our understanding of overall patterns of biodiversity from snapshots in time. Here, we investigated the fungi inhabiting the phylloplane among species of the endemic Hawaiian plant genus, Clermontia (Campanulaceae. Utilizing next generation DNA amplicon sequencing, we uncovered approximately 1,780 fungal operational taxonomic units from just 20 DNA bank samples collected throughout the main Hawaiian Islands. Using these historical samples, we tested the macroecological pattern of decreasing community similarity with decreasing geographic proximity. We found a significant distance decay pattern among Clermontia associated fungal communities. This study provides the first insights into elucidating patterns of microbial diversity through the use of DNA bank repository samples.

  9. Plant diversity in different bioclimatic zones in Tunisia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hana You

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The Republic of Tunisia, located in northern Africa, faces various environmental challenges caused by anthropogenic practices such as overgrazing, deforestation, and desertification. The conversion of natural ecosystems is the major cause of plant biodiversity loss. Tunisia can be divided into three main climatic zones as follows: a northern Mediterranean climate zone, a central steppe climate zone, and a southern desert climate zone. Because of this great environmental diversity, there are distinctive vegetation and various genetic resources in Tunisia. This research was conducted to investigate plant biodiversity within the various bioclimatic zones and to characterize useful plant resources in Tunisia. We investigated native, medicinal and aromatic, desert, and soil erosion control plant species.

  10. Intraspecific chemical diversity among neighbouring plants correlates positively with plant size and herbivore load but negatively with herbivore damage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bustos-segura, Carlos; Poelman, Erik H.; Reichelt, Michael; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Gols, Rieta; Scherber, Christoph

    2017-01-01

    Intraspecific plant diversity can modify the properties of associated arthropod communities and plant fitness. However, it is not well understood which plant traits determine these ecological effects. We explored the effect of intraspecific chemical diversity among neighbouring plants on the associa

  11. Fungal diversity associated with Hawaiian Drosophila host plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian S Ort

    Full Text Available Hawaiian Drosophila depend primarily, sometimes exclusively, on specific host plants for oviposition and larval development, and most specialize further on a particular decomposing part of that plant. Differences in fungal community between host plants and substrate types may establish the basis for host specificity in Hawaiian Drosophila. Fungi mediate decomposition, releasing plant micronutrients and volatiles that can indicate high quality substrates and serve as cues to stimulate oviposition. This study addresses major gaps in our knowledge by providing the first culture-free, DNA-based survey of fungal diversity associated with four ecologically important tree genera in the Hawaiian Islands. Three genera, Cheirodendron, Clermontia, and Pisonia, are important host plants for Drosophila. The fourth, Acacia, is not an important drosophilid host but is a dominant forest tree. We sampled fresh and rotting leaves from all four taxa, plus rotting stems from Clermontia and Pisonia. Based on sequences from the D1/D2 domain of the 26S rDNA gene, we identified by BLAST search representatives from 113 genera in 13 fungal classes. A total of 160 operational taxonomic units, defined on the basis of ≥97% genetic similarity, were identified in these samples, but sampling curves show this is an underestimate of the total fungal diversity present on these substrates. Shannon diversity indices ranged from 2.0 to 3.5 among the Hawaiian samples, a slight reduction compared to continental surveys. We detected very little sharing of fungal taxa among the substrates, and tests of community composition confirmed that the structure of the fungal community differed significantly among the substrates and host plants. Based on these results, we hypothesize that fungal community structure plays a central role in the establishment of host preference in the Hawaiian Drosophila radiation.

  12. Plant functional diversity enhances associations of soil fungal diversity with vegetation and soil in the restoration of semiarid sandy grassland

    OpenAIRE

    Zuo, Xiaoan; Wang, Shaokun; Lv, Peng; Zhou, Xin; Zhao, Xueyong; Zhang, Tonghui; Zhang, Jing

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The trait‐based approach shows that plant functional diversity strongly affects ecosystem properties. However, few empirical studies show the relationship between soil fungal diversity and plant functional diversity in natural ecosystems. We investigated soil fungal diversity along a restoration gradient of sandy grassland (mobile dune, semifixed dune, fixed dune, and grassland) in Horqin Sand Land, northern China, using the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of 18S rRNA and gen...

  13. Conserved Gene Expression Programs in Developing Roots from Diverse Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Ling; Schiefelbein, John

    2015-08-01

    The molecular basis for the origin and diversification of morphological adaptations is a central issue in evolutionary developmental biology. Here, we defined temporal transcript accumulation in developing roots from seven vascular plants, permitting a genome-wide comparative analysis of the molecular programs used by a single organ across diverse species. The resulting gene expression maps uncover significant similarity in the genes employed in roots and their developmental expression profiles. The detailed analysis of a subset of 133 genes known to be associated with root development in Arabidopsis thaliana indicates that most of these are used in all plant species. Strikingly, this was also true for root development in a lycophyte (Selaginella moellendorffii), which forms morphologically different roots and is thought to have evolved roots independently. Thus, despite vast differences in size and anatomy of roots from diverse plants, the basic molecular mechanisms employed during root formation appear to be conserved. This suggests that roots evolved in the two major vascular plant lineages either by parallel recruitment of largely the same developmental program or by elaboration of an existing root program in the common ancestor of vascular plants.

  14. Acidification of sandy grasslands - consequences for plant diversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsson, Pål Axel; Mårtensson, Linda-Maria; Bruun, Hans Henrik

    2009-01-01

    Questions: (1) Does soil acidification in calcareous sandy grasslands lead to loss of plant diversity? (2) What is the relationship between the soil content of lime and the plant availability of mineral nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) in sandy grasslands? Location: Sandy glaciofluvial deposits...... in south-eastern Sweden covered by xeric sand calcareous grasslands (EU habitat directive 6120). Methods: Soil and vegetation were investigated in most of the xeric sand calcareous grasslands in the Scania region (136 sample plots distributed over four or five major areas and about 25 different sites...

  15. Review: Mycoendophytes in medicinal plants: Diversity and bioactivities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MUDASIR DAR

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Rai M, Gade A, Rathod D, Dar M, Varma A. 2012. Review: Mycoendophytes in medicinal plants: Diversity and bioactivities. Nusantara Bioscience 4: 86-96. Endophytes are microorganisms that reside in internal tissues of living plants without causing any negative effect. These offer tremendous potential for the exploitation of novel and eco-friendly secondary metabolites used in medicine, the pharmaceutical industry and agriculture. The present review is focused on diversity of endophytes, current national and international bioactive secondary metabolite scenario and future prospects. Endophytic fungi as novel source of potentially useful medicinal compounds are discussed along with the need to search for new and more effective agents from endophytes to combat disease problems.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Plant diversity associated with pools in natural and restored peatlands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Fontaine

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available This study describes plant assemblages associated with the edges of peatland pools. We conducted inventories in six natural peatlands in the province of Québec (Canada in order to measure the contribution of pools to species diversity in climatic regions where peatlands are used for peat extraction. We also carried out vegetation surveys in a peatland that has been restored after peat extraction/harvesting to determine whether pool vegetation establishes along the edges of created pools when dry surface restoration techniques only are used. Pools enhanced plant species richness in natural peatlands. Around created pools, species associated with natural pools were still absent, and non-bog species were present, six years after restoration. On this basis, we emphasise the importance of preserving natural peatlands with pools. In order to restore fully the plant diversity associated with peatlands at harvested sites, it may be necessary to modify pool excavation techniques so that created pools resemble more closely those in natural peatlands. Active introduction of the plant species or communities associated with natural pools may also be needed; candidate species for North America include Andromeda glaucophylla, Cladopodiella fluitans, Carex limosa, Eriophorum virginicum, Rhynchospora alba and Sphagnum cuspidatum.

  18. Plant diversity and root traits benefit physical properties key to soil function in grasslands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gould, Iain J.; Quinton, John N.; Weigelt, Alexandra; Deyn, De Gerlinde B.; Bardgett, Richard D.; Seabloom, Eric

    2016-01-01

    Plant diversity loss impairs ecosystem functioning, including important effects on soil. Most studies that have explored plant diversity effects belowground, however, have largely focused on biological processes. As such, our understanding of how plant diversity impacts the soil physical

  19. Plant traits mediate consumer and nutrient control on plant community productivity and diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eskelinen, Anu; Harrison, Susan; Tuomi, Maria

    2012-12-01

    The interactive effects of consumers and nutrients on terrestrial plant communities, and the role of plant functional traits in mediating these responses, are poorly known. We carried out a six-year full-factorial field experiment using mammalian herbivore exclusion and fertilization in two habitat types (fertile and infertile alpine tundra heaths) that differed in plant functional traits related to resource acquisition and palatability. Infertile habitats were dominated by species with traits indicative of a slow-growing strategy: high C:N ratio, low specific leaf area, and high condensed tannins. We found that herbivory counteracted the effect of fertilization on biomass, and that this response differed between the two habitats and was correlated with plant functional traits. Live biomass dominated the treatment responses in infertile habitats, whereas litter accumulation dominated the treatment responses in fertile habitats and was strongly negatively associated with resident community tannin concentration. Species richness declined under herbivore exclusion and fertilization in fertile habitats, where litter accumulation was greatest. Community means of plant C:N ratio predicted treatment effects on diversity: fertilization decreased and herbivory increased dominance in communities originally dominated by plants with high C:N, while fertilization increased and herbivory diminished dominance in communities where low C:N species were abundant. Our results highlight the close interdependence between consumer effects, soil nutrients, and plant functional traits and suggest that plant traits may provide an improved understanding of how consumers and nutrients influence plant community productivity and diversity.

  20. Environmental correlates of plant diversity in Korean temperate forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Černý, Tomáš; Doležal, Jiří; Janeček, Štěpán; Šrůtek, Miroslav; Valachovič, Milan; Petřík, Petr; Altman, Jan; Bartoš, Michael; Song, Jong-Suk

    2013-02-01

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

  1. 27 CFR 4.28 - Type designations of varietal significance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ...) Muscatel. An American wine which derives its predominant taste, aroma, characteristics and at least 75... TRADE BUREAU, DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY LIQUORS LABELING AND ADVERTISING OF WINE Standards of Identity for Wine § 4.28 Type designations of varietal significance. The following are type designations...

  2. Varietéen på Frederikstorv

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, Knud

    The book tells the story of the music hall, The Varieté, in Aalborg from the time of its establishment to the present day, focusing primarily on the years from 1898 to the early 1970s. An effort has been made to contribute both to local history and to the history of popular entertainment....

  3. Varietal differences of quinoa’s tolerance to saline conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adolf, V I; Shabala, S; Andersen, Mathias Neumann

    2012-01-01

    Aims This study aimed to assess varietal differences of quinoa’s tolerance to salinity and to investigate physiological mechanisms conferring these differences. Methods Production of biomass in fourteen varieties grown under saline conditions was analysed in a pot experiment. For two contrasting...

  4. Expanding Kenya's protected areas under the Convention on Biological Diversity to maximize coverage of plant diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scherer, Laura; Curran, Michael; Alvarez, Miguel

    2017-04-01

    Biodiversity is highly valuable and critically threatened by anthropogenic degradation of the natural environment. In response, governments have pledged enhanced protected-area coverage, which requires scarce biological data to identify conservation priorities. To assist this effort, we mapped conservation priorities in Kenya based on maximizing alpha (species richness) and beta diversity (species turnover) of plant communities while minimizing economic costs. We used plant-cover percentages from vegetation surveys of over 2000 plots to build separate models for each type of diversity. Opportunity and management costs were based on literature data and interviews with conservation organizations. Species richness was predicted to be highest in a belt from Lake Turkana through Mount Kenya and in a belt parallel to the coast, and species turnover was predicted to be highest in western Kenya and along the coast. Our results suggest the expanding reserve network should focus on the coast and northeastern provinces of Kenya, where new biological surveys would also fill biological data gaps. Meeting the Convention on Biological Diversity target of 17% terrestrial coverage by 2020 would increase representation of Kenya's plant communities by 75%. However, this would require about 50 times more funds than Kenya has received thus far from the Global Environment Facility. © 2016 Society for Conservation Biology.

  5. Relationships between Spatial Metrics and Plant Diversity in Constructed Freshwater Wetlands.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika C Brandt

    Full Text Available The diversity of plant species and their distribution in space are both thought to have important effects on the function of wetland ecosystems. However, knowledge of the relationships between plant species and spatial diversity remains incomplete. In this study, we investigated relationships between spatial pattern and plant species diversity over a five year period following the initial restoration of experimental wetland ecosystems. In 2003, six identical and hydrologically-isolated 0.18 ha wetland "cells" were constructed in former farmland in northeast Ohio. The systems were subjected to planting treatments that resulted in different levels of vascular plant species diversity among cells. Plant species diversity was assessed through annual inventories. Plant spatial pattern was assessed by digitizing low-altitude aerial photographs taken at the same time as the inventories. Diversity metrics derived from the inventories were significantly related to certain spatial metrics derived from the photographs, including cover type diversity and contagion. We found that wetlands with high cover type diversity harbor higher plant species diversity than wetlands with fewer types of patches. We also found significant relationships between plant species diversity and spatial patterning of patch types, but the direction of the effect differed depending on the diversity metric used. Links between diversity and spatial pattern observed in this study suggest that high-resolution aerial imagery may provide wetland scientists with a useful tool for assessing plant diversity.

  6. Relationships between Spatial Metrics and Plant Diversity in Constructed Freshwater Wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grossman, Jake J.; Allen, George A.; Benzing, David H.

    2015-01-01

    The diversity of plant species and their distribution in space are both thought to have important effects on the function of wetland ecosystems. However, knowledge of the relationships between plant species and spatial diversity remains incomplete. In this study, we investigated relationships between spatial pattern and plant species diversity over a five year period following the initial restoration of experimental wetland ecosystems. In 2003, six identical and hydrologically-isolated 0.18 ha wetland “cells” were constructed in former farmland in northeast Ohio. The systems were subjected to planting treatments that resulted in different levels of vascular plant species diversity among cells. Plant species diversity was assessed through annual inventories. Plant spatial pattern was assessed by digitizing low-altitude aerial photographs taken at the same time as the inventories. Diversity metrics derived from the inventories were significantly related to certain spatial metrics derived from the photographs, including cover type diversity and contagion. We found that wetlands with high cover type diversity harbor higher plant species diversity than wetlands with fewer types of patches. We also found significant relationships between plant species diversity and spatial patterning of patch types, but the direction of the effect differed depending on the diversity metric used. Links between diversity and spatial pattern observed in this study suggest that high-resolution aerial imagery may provide wetland scientists with a useful tool for assessing plant diversity. PMID:26296205

  7. Endophytic Fungal Diversity in Medicinal Plants of Western Ghats, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monnanda Somaiah Nalini

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Endophytes constitute an important component of microbial diversity, and in the present investigation, seven plant species with rich ethnobotanical uses representing six families were analyzed for the presence of endophytic fungi from their natural habitats during monsoon (May/June and winter (November/December seasons of 2007. Fungal endophytes were isolated from healthy plant parts such as stem, root, rhizome, and inflorescence employing standard isolation methods. One thousand five hundred and twenty-nine fungal isolates were obtained from 5200 fragments. Stem fragments harbored more endophytes (80.37% than roots (19.22%. 31 fungal taxa comprised of coelomycetes (65%, hyphomycetes (32%, and ascomycetes (3%. Fusarium, Acremonium, Colletotrichum, Chaetomium, Myrothecium, Phomopsis, and Pestalotiopsis spp. were commonly isolated. Diversity indices differed significantly between the seasons (P<0.001. Species richness was greater for monsoon isolations than winter. Host specificity was observed for few fungal endophytes. UPGMA cluster analysis grouped the endophytes into distinct clusters on the basis of genetic distance. This study is the first report on the diversity and host-specificity of endophytic fungal taxa were from the semi evergreen forest type in Talacauvery subcluster of Western Ghats.

  8. Plant functional diversity enhances associations of soil fungal diversity with vegetation and soil in the restoration of semiarid sandy grassland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuo, Xiaoan; Wang, Shaokun; Lv, Peng; Zhou, Xin; Zhao, Xueyong; Zhang, Tonghui; Zhang, Jing

    2016-01-01

    The trait-based approach shows that plant functional diversity strongly affects ecosystem properties. However, few empirical studies show the relationship between soil fungal diversity and plant functional diversity in natural ecosystems. We investigated soil fungal diversity along a restoration gradient of sandy grassland (mobile dune, semifixed dune, fixed dune, and grassland) in Horqin Sand Land, northern China, using the denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of 18S rRNA and gene sequencing. We also examined associations of soil fungal diversity with plant functional diversity reflected by the dominant species' traits in community (community-weighted mean, CWM) and the dispersion of functional trait values (FD is). We further used the structure equation model (SEM) to evaluate how plant richness, biomass, functional diversity, and soil properties affect soil fungal diversity in sandy grassland restoration. Soil fungal richness in mobile dune and semifixed dune was markedly lower than those of fixed dune and grassland (P functional diversity explained nearly 70% variances of soil fungal richness. Strong association of soil fungal richness with the dominant species in the community supported the mass ratio hypothesis. Our results clearly highlight the role of plant functional diversity in enhancing associations of soil fungal diversity with community structure and soil properties in sandy grassland ecosystems.

  9. Effects of diversity and identity of the neighbouring plant community on the abundance of arthropods onindividual ragwort (Jacobaea vulgaris) plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kostenko, O.; Grootemaat, S.; Putten, van der W.H.; Bezemer, T.M.

    2012-01-01

    The diversity of plant community can greatly affect the abundance and diversity of arthropods associated to that community, but can also influence the composition or abundance of arthropods on individual plants growing in that community. We sampled arthropods and recorded plant size of individual

  10. The Future of Vascular Plant Diversity Under Four Global Scenarios

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Detlef P. van Vuuren

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Biodiversity is of crucial importance for ecosystem functioning and human well-being. Using quantitative projections of changes in land use and climate from the four Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA scenarios, we project that reduction of habitat by year 2050 will result in a loss of global vascular plant diversity ranging from 7-24% relative to 1995, after populations have reached equilibrium with the reduced habitat. This range includes both the impact of different scenarios and uncertainty in the SAR relationship. Biomes projected to lose the most species are warm mixed forest, savannahs, shrub, tropical forest, and tropical woodlands. In the 2000-2050 period, land-use change contributes more on a global scale to species diversity loss than does climate change, 7-13% vs. 2-4% loss at equilibrium for different scenarios, respectively. However, after 2050, climate change will become increasingly important.

  11. Root exudate cocktails: the link between plant diversity and soil microorganisms?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinauer, Katja; Chatzinotas, Antonis; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2016-10-01

    Higher plant diversity is often associated with higher soil microbial biomass and diversity, which is assumed to be partly due to elevated root exudate diversity. However, there is little experimental evidence that diversity of root exudates shapes soil microbial communities. We tested whether higher root exudate diversity enhances soil microbial biomass and diversity in a plant diversity gradient, thereby negating significant plant diversity effects on soil microbial properties. We set up plant monocultures and two- and three-species mixtures in microcosms using functionally dissimilar plants and soil of a grassland biodiversity experiment in Germany. Artificial exudate cocktails were added by combining the most common sugars, organic acids, and amino acids found in root exudates. We applied four different exudate cocktails: two exudate diversity levels (low- and high-diversity) and two nutrient-enriched levels (carbon- and nitrogen-enriched), and a control with water only. Soil microorganisms were more carbon- than nitrogen-limited. Cultivation-independent fingerprinting analysis revealed significantly different soil microbial communities among exudate diversity treatments. Most notably and according to our hypothesis, adding diverse exudate cocktails negated the significant plant diversity effect on soil microbial properties. Our findings provide the first experimental evidence that root exudate diversity is a crucial link between plant diversity and soil microorganisms.

  12. Advanced technologies for plant cell wall evolution and diversity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fangel, Jonatan Ulrik

    Plant cell walls consist of polysaccharides, glycoproteins and phenolic polymers interlinked together in a highly complex network. The detailed analysis of cell walls is challenging because of their inherent complexity and heterogeneity. Also, complex carbohydrates, unlike proteins and nucleotides...... probes (monoclonal antibodies mAbs and carbohydrate binding modules, CBMs) to rapidly profile polysaccharides across a sample set. During my PhD I have further developed the CoMPP technique and used it for cell wall analysis within the context of a variety of applied and fundamental projects. The data...... produced has provided new insight into cell wall evolution and biosynthesis and has contributed to the commercial development of cell wall materials. A major focus of the work has been the wide scale sampling of cell wall diversity across the plant kingdom, from unicellular algae to highly evolved...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zerbe, Philipp; Bohlmann, Jörg

    2015-07-01

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

  14. Deforestation and plant diversity of Madagascar's littoral forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Consiglio, Trisha; Schatz, George E; McPherson, Gordon; Lowry, Porter P; Rabenantoandro, Johny; Rogers, Zachary S; Rabevohitra, Raymond; Rabehevitra, David

    2006-12-01

    Few studies have attempted to quantify the reduction or document the floristic composition of forests in Madagascar. Thus, we focused specifically on deforestation and plant diversity in Madagascar's eastern littoral community. We used a data set of approximately 13,500 specimen records compiled from both historical and contemporary collections resulting from recent intensive inventory efforts to enumerate total plant species richness and to analyze the degree of endemism within littoral forests. Change in littoral forest cover from original to current extent was estimated using geographical information systems tools, remote sensing data (satellite imagery and low-elevation digital photography), and environmental data layers. Of the original littoral forest only 10.3% remains in the form of small forest parcels, and only 1.5% of these remaining fragments are included within the existing protected-areas network. Additionally, approximately 13% of Madagascar's total native flora has been recorded from these forests that originally occupied land surface, and over 25% of the 1535 plant species known from littoral forests are endemic to this community. Given the ongoing pressure from human settlement along Madagascar's eastern coast, protection of the remaining forest fragments is critical for their survival. Fifteen of the largest intact littoral forest fragments we identified, collectively representing 41.5% of remaining littoral forest, are among priority sites recommended to the government of Madagascar for plant conservation and incorporation into the protected-areas network.

  15. Plant and algal cell walls: diversity and functionality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popper, Zoë A; Ralet, Marie-Christine; Domozych, David S

    2014-10-01

    Although plants and many algae (e.g. the Phaeophyceae, brown, and Rhodophyceae, red) are only very distantly related they are united in their possession of carbohydrate-rich cell walls, which are of integral importance being involved in many physiological processes. Furthermore,wall components have applications within food, fuel, pharmaceuticals, fibres (e.g. for textiles and paper) and building materials and have long been an active topic of research. As shown in the 27 papers in this Special Issue, as the major deposit of photosynthetically fixed carbon, and therefore energy investment, cell walls are of undisputed importance to the organisms that possess them, the photosynthetic eukaryotes ( plants and algae). The complexities of cell wall components along with their interactions with the biotic and abiotic environment are becoming increasingly revealed. The importance of plant and algal cell walls and their individual components to the function and survival of the organism, and for a number of industrial applications, are illustrated by the breadth of topics covered in this issue, which includes papers concentrating on various plants and algae, developmental stages, organs, cell wall components, and techniques. Although we acknowledge that there are many alternative ways in which the papers could be categorized (and many would fit within several topics), we have organized them as follows: (1) cell wall biosynthesis and remodelling, (2) cell wall diversity, and (3) application of new technologies to cell walls. Finally, we will consider future directions within plant cell wall research. Expansion of the industrial uses of cell walls and potentially novel uses of cell wall components are both avenues likely to direct future research activities. Fundamentally, it is the continued progression from characterization (structure, metabolism, properties and localization) of individual cell wall components through to defining their roles in almost every aspect of plant

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-12-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a major concern for the meat processing industry because many listeriosis outbreaks have been linked to meat product consumption. The aim of this study was to elucidate L. monocytogenes diversity and distribution across different Spanish meat processing plants. L. monocytogenes isolates (N = 106) collected from food contact surfaces of meat processing plants and meat products were serotyped and then characterised by multilocus sequence typing (MLST). The isolates were serotyped as 1/2a (36.8%), 1/2c (34%), 1/2b (17.9%) and 4b (11.3%). MLST identified ST9 as the most predominant allelic profile (33% of isolates) followed by ST121 (16%), both of which were detected from several processing plants and meat products sampled in different years, suggesting that those STs are highly adapted to the meat processing environment. Food contact surfaces during processing were established as an important source of L. monocytogenes in meat products because the same STs were obtained in isolates recovered from surfaces and products. L. monocytogenes was recovered after cleaning and disinfection procedures in two processing plants, highlighting the importance of thorough cleaning and disinfection procedures. Epidemic clone (EC) marker ECI was identified in 8.5%, ECIII was identified in 2.8%, and ECV was identified in 7.5% of the 106 isolates. Furthermore, a selection of presumably unrelated ST9 isolates was analysed by multi-virulence-locus sequence typing (MVLST). Most ST9 isolates had the same virulence type (VT11), confirming the clonal origin of ST9 isolates; however, one ST9 isolate was assigned to a new VT (VT95). Consequently, MLST is a reliable tool for identification of contamination routes and niches in processing plants, and MVLST clearly differentiates EC strains, which both contribute to the improvement of L. monocytogenes control programs in the meat industry. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Rice varietal differences in arsenite metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plants utilize an assortment of survival mechanisms to reduce arsenic toxicity, such as exclusion, translocation, and detoxification. Detoxification is the primary method plants use to mediate mitigate heavy metal stress through formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and methylglyoxal (MG) meta...

  18. Plant-soil feedback and the maintenance of diversity in Mediterranean-climate shrublands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teste, François P; Kardol, Paul; Turner, Benjamin L; Wardle, David A; Zemunik, Graham; Renton, Michael; Laliberté, Etienne

    2017-01-13

    Soil biota influence plant performance through plant-soil feedback, but it is unclear whether the strength of such feedback depends on plant traits and whether plant-soil feedback drives local plant diversity. We grew 16 co-occurring plant species with contrasting nutrient-acquisition strategies from hyperdiverse Australian shrublands and exposed them to soil biota from under their own or other plant species. Plant responses to soil biota varied according to their nutrient-acquisition strategy, including positive feedback for ectomycorrhizal plants and negative feedback for nitrogen-fixing and nonmycorrhizal plants. Simulations revealed that such strategy-dependent feedback is sufficient to maintain the high taxonomic and functional diversity characterizing these Mediterranean-climate shrublands. Our study identifies nutrient-acquisition strategy as a key trait explaining how different plant responses to soil biota promote local plant diversity. Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  19. Shrines in Central Italy conserve plant diversity and large trees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frascaroli, Fabrizio; Bhagwat, Shonil; Guarino, Riccardo; Chiarucci, Alessandro; Schmid, Bernhard

    2016-05-01

    Sacred natural sites (SNS) are instances of biocultural landscapes protected for spiritual motives. These sites frequently host important biological values in areas of Asia and Africa, where traditional resource management is still upheld by local communities. In contrast, the biodiversity value of SNS has hardly been quantitatively tested in Western contexts, where customs and traditions have relatively lost importance due to modernization and secularization. To assess whether SNS in Western contexts retain value for biodiversity, we studied plant species composition at 30 SNS in Central Italy and compared them with a paired set of similar but not sacred reference sites. We demonstrate that SNS are important for conserving stands of large trees and habitat heterogeneity across different land-cover types. Further, SNS harbor higher plant species richness and a more valuable plant species pool, and significantly contribute to diversity at the landscape scale. We suggest that these patterns are related not only to pre-existent features, but also to traditional management. Conservation of SNS should take into account these specificities, and their cultural as well as biological values, by supporting the continuation of traditional management practices.

  20. Depth Effects on Plant Residue Decay in Diverse Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregorich, Edward; Ellert, Benjamin; Janzen, Henry; Helgason, Bobbi; Beare, Michael; Curtin, Denis

    2017-04-01

    Decay of plant residues is tied to many ecosystem functions, affecting atmospheric CO2, plant-available nutrients, microbial diversity, soil organic matter quality, among others. The rate of decay, in turn, is governed by soil type and management, location in the soil profile, and environmental variables, some of which may be changing in coming decades. Our objective in this study was to elucidate the decomposition dynamics of plant-derived C and N at different soil depths. To describe mathematically the importance of these variables across a broad scale, we established a long-term study at two sites in Canada and one site in New Zealand. At each site, labelled barley straw (13C = 10.2 atom%, 15N = 8.3 atom %; C = 37.9%; N = 0.95%; C:N = 40) was installed at 3 depths (5-10, 20-25 and 40-45 cm). Soil temperature was logged at each depth. Samples were collected at different times over 5-6 year after application of the residues. Data on recovery and kinetics of residue C and N over the experimental period will be discussed as well as 13C- PLFA results.

  1. Varietal flavour compounds of four grape varieties producing Madeira wines

    OpenAIRE

    Câmara, José de Sousa; Herbert, Paulo; Marques, José Carlos; Alves, Maria Arminda

    2004-01-01

    Boal, Malvasia, Sercial and Verdelho are the main white grape varieties used in Madeira wine production. To estimate the free fraction of varietal aroma compounds of these varieties, 39 samples of musts were analysed to determine their content of monoterpenols and C13 norisoprenoids (terpenoids), using dynamic headspace solid-phase microextraction coupled with gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. The r-values for linearity studies of the analytical method used, varied between 0.977 (nerolido...

  2. Indirect drivers of plant diversity-productivity relationship in semiarid sandy grasslands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    X. A. Zuo

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Although patterns between plant diversity and ecosystem productivity have been much studied, a consistent relationship has not yet emerged. Differing patterns between plant diversity and productivity have been observed in response to spatial variability of environmental factors and vegetation composition. In this study, we measured vegetation cover, plant diversity, productivity, soil properties and site characteristics along an environmental gradient (mobile dune, semi-fixed dune, fixed dune, dry meadow, wet meadow and flood plain grasslands of natural sandy grasslands in semiarid areas of northern China. We used multivariate analysis to examine the relationships between environmental factors, vegetation composition, plant diversity and productivity. We found a positive correlation between plant diversity and productivity. Vegetation composition aggregated by the ordination technique of non-metric multidimensional scaling had also a significantly positive correlation with plant diversity and productivity. Environmental gradients in relation to soil and topography affected the distribution patterns of vegetation composition, species diversity and productivity. However, environmental gradients were a better determinant of vegetation composition and productivity than of plant diversity. Structural equation modeling suggested that environmental factors determine vegetation composition, which in turn independently drives both plant diversity and productivity. Thus, the positive correlation between plant diversity and productivity is indirectly driven by vegetation composition, which is determined by environmental gradients in soil and topography.

  3. Plant diversity and root traits benefit physical properties key to soil function in grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gould, Iain J; Quinton, John N; Weigelt, Alexandra; De Deyn, Gerlinde B; Bardgett, Richard D

    2016-09-01

    Plant diversity loss impairs ecosystem functioning, including important effects on soil. Most studies that have explored plant diversity effects belowground, however, have largely focused on biological processes. As such, our understanding of how plant diversity impacts the soil physical environment remains limited, despite the fundamental role soil physical structure plays in ensuring soil function and ecosystem service provision. Here, in both a glasshouse and a long-term field study, we show that high plant diversity in grassland systems increases soil aggregate stability, a vital structural property of soil, and that root traits play a major role in determining diversity effects. We also reveal that the presence of particular plant species within mixed communities affects an even wider range of soil physical processes, including hydrology and soil strength regimes. Our results indicate that alongside well-documented effects on ecosystem functioning, plant diversity and root traits also benefit essential soil physical properties.

  4. Does plant diversity benefit agroecosystems? A synthetic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letourneau, Deborah K; Armbrecht, Inge; Rivera, Beatriz Salguero; Lerma, James Montoya; Carmona, Elizabeth Jiménez; Daza, Martha Constanza; Escobar, Selene; Galindo, Victor; Gutiérrez, Catalina; López, Sebastián Duque; Mejía, Jessica López; Rangel, Aleyda Maritza Acosta; Rangel, Janine Herrera; Rivera, Leonardo; Saavedra, Carlos Arturo; Torres, Alba Marina; Trujillo, Aldemar Reyes

    2011-01-01

    Predictive theory on how plant diversity promotes herbivore suppression through movement patterns, host associations, and predation promises a potential alternative to pesticide-intensive monoculture crop production. We used meta-analysis on 552 experiments in 45 articles published over the last 10 years to test if plant diversification schemes reduce herbivores and/or increase the natural enemies of herbivores as predicted by associational resistance hypotheses, the enemies hypothesis, and attraction and repellency model applications in agriculture. We found extensive support for these models with intercropping schemes, inclusion of flowering plants, and use of plants that repel herbivores or attract them away from the crop. Overall, herbivore suppression, enemy enhancement, and crop damage suppression effects were significantly stronger on diversified crops than on crops with none or fewer associated plant species. However, a relatively small, but significantly negative, mean effect size for crop yield indicated that pest-suppressive diversification schemes interfered with production, in part because of reducing densities of the main crop by replacing it with intercrops or non-crop plants. This first use of meta-analysis to evaluate the effects of diversification schemes, a potentially more powerful tool than tallies of significant positive and negative outcomes (vote-counting), revealed stronger overall effects on all parameters measured compared to previous reviews. Our analysis of the same articles used in a recent review facilitates comparisons of vote-counting and meta-analysis, and shows that pronounced results of the meta-analysis are not well explained by a reduction in articles that met its stricter criteria. Rather, compared to outcome counts, effect sizes were rarely neutral (equal to zero), and a mean effect size value for mixed outcomes could be calculated. Problematic statistical properties of vote-counting were avoided with meta-analysis, thus

  5. Bacterial Diversity of Active Sludge in Wastewater Treatment Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Xin; Ma, Mingchao; Li, Jun; Lu, Anhuai; Zhong, Zuoshen

    A bacterial 16S rDNA gene clone library was constructed to analyze the bacterial diversity of active sludge in Gaobeidian Wastewater Treatment Plant, Beijing. The results indicated that the bacterial diversity of active sludge was very high, and the clones could be divided into 5 different groups. The dominant bacterial community was proteobacteria, which accounted for 76.7%. The dominant succession of bacterial community were as follows: the β-proteobacteria (39.8%), the uncultured bacteria (22.33%), the γ-proteobacteria (20.15%), the α-proteobacteria (6.79%), and the σ-proteobacteria (4.85%). Nitrosomonas-like and Nitrospira-like bacteria, such as Nitrosomonas sp. (1.94%) and uncultured Nitrospirae bacterium (11.65%) were also detected, which have played important roles in ammonia and nitrite oxidisers in the system. However, they were only a little amount because of their slow growth and less competitive advantage than heterotrophic bacteria. Denitrifying bacteria like Thauera sp. was at a high percentage, which implies a strong denitrification ability; Roseomonas sp. was also detected in the clone library, which could be related to the degradation of organophosphorus pesticide.

  6. Mass Spectral Characterization and UPLC Quantitation of 3-Deoxyanthocyanidins in Sorghum bicolor Varietals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Nathan P; Rana, Jatinder; Chandra, Amitabh; Balles, John

    2017-08-10

    A quantitative ultra-performance LC (UPLC) method was developed and validated to successfully separate, identify, and quantitate the major polyphenolic compounds present in different varieties of sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) feedstock. The method was linear from 3.2 to 320 ppm, with an r² of 0.99999 when using luteolinidin chloride as the external standard. Method accuracy was determined to be 99.5%, and precision of replicate preparations was less than 1% RSD. Characterization by UPLC-MS determined that the predominant polyphenolic components of the sorghum varietals were 3-deoxyanthocyanidins (3-DXAs). High-throughput screening for 3-DXA identified four unique classes within the sorghum varieties. Certain feedstock varieties have been found to have a high potential to not only be plant-based colorants, but also provide significant amounts of bioactive 3-DXAs, making them of unique interest to the dietary supplement industry.

  7. Effects of Drought on Plant Species Diversity and Productivity in the Oak Forests of Western Iran

    OpenAIRE

    Hassan Pourbabaei; Verya Rahimi; Mohammad Naghi Adel

    2014-01-01

    A severe drought in 2008 extensively damaged a variety of economic, social, agricultural and natural resources in Iran. This study investigated the effects of the 2008 drought on plant species composition, diversity and productivity in Western Iran. To this end, plant species diversity in the drought year (2008) was compared to pre-drought (2007) and post-drought (2009) diversity. The Shannon-Wiener diversity index and Margalef richness index had significant differences between years, dec...

  8. Organic farming and heterogeneous landscapes positively affect different measures of plant diversity

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Rader, Romina; Birkhofer, Klaus; Schmucki, Reto; Smith, Henrik G; Stjernman, Martin; Lindborg, Regina; McKenzie, Ailsa

    2014-01-01

    ...) and farm management intensity (organic vs. conventional farming). Plant species richness and functional diversity metrics all responded positively to landscape heterogeneity, with the strongest effect occurring on conventional...

  9. Plant diversity in hedgerows amidst Atlantic Forest fragments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolina C. C. Oliveira

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Hedgerows are linear structures found in agricultural landscapes that may facilitate dispersal of plants and animals and also serve as habitat. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationships among diversity and ecological traits of woody plants, hedgerow characteristics (size, age, and origin, and the structure of the surrounding Atlantic Forest landscape. Field data were collected from 14 hedgerows, and landscape metrics from 1000-m buffers surrounding hedgerows were recorded from a thematic map. In all sampled hedgerows, arboreal species were predominantly zoochoric and early-succession species, and hedgerow width was an important factor explaining the richness and abundance of this group of species. Connection with forest vegetation did not explain richness and abundance of animal-dispersed species, but richness of non-zoochoric species increased in more connected hedgerows. These results suggest that hedgerows are probably colonized by species arriving from nearby early-succession sites, forest fragment edges, and isolated trees in the matrix. Nonetheless, hedgerows provide resources for frugivorous animals and influence landscape connectivity, highlighting the importance of these elements in the conservation of biodiversity in fragmented and rural landscapes.

  10. Biotic and abiotic properties mediating plant diversity effects on soil microbial communities in an experimental grassland.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Markus Lange

    Full Text Available Plant diversity drives changes in the soil microbial community which may result in alterations in ecosystem functions. However, the governing factors between the composition of soil microbial communities and plant diversity are not well understood. We investigated the impact of plant diversity (plant species richness and functional group richness and plant functional group identity on soil microbial biomass and soil microbial community structure in experimental grassland ecosystems. Total microbial biomass and community structure were determined by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA analysis. The diversity gradient covered 1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species and 1, 2, 3 and 4 plant functional groups (grasses, legumes, small herbs and tall herbs. In May 2007, soil samples were taken from experimental plots and from nearby fields and meadows. Beside soil texture, plant species richness was the main driver of soil microbial biomass. Structural equation modeling revealed that the positive plant diversity effect was mainly mediated by higher leaf area index resulting in higher soil moisture in the top soil layer. The fungal-to-bacterial biomass ratio was positively affected by plant functional group richness and negatively by the presence of legumes. Bacteria were more closely related to abiotic differences caused by plant diversity, while fungi were more affected by plant-derived organic matter inputs. We found diverse plant communities promoted faster transition of soil microbial communities typical for arable land towards grassland communities. Although some mechanisms underlying the plant diversity effect on soil microorganisms could be identified, future studies have to determine plant traits shaping soil microbial community structure. We suspect differences in root traits among different plant communities, such as root turnover rates and chemical composition of root exudates, to structure soil microbial communities.

  11. Biotic and abiotic properties mediating plant diversity effects on soil microbial communities in an experimental grassland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Markus; Habekost, Maike; Eisenhauer, Nico; Roscher, Christiane; Bessler, Holger; Engels, Christof; Oelmann, Yvonne; Scheu, Stefan; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef; Gleixner, Gerd

    2014-01-01

    Plant diversity drives changes in the soil microbial community which may result in alterations in ecosystem functions. However, the governing factors between the composition of soil microbial communities and plant diversity are not well understood. We investigated the impact of plant diversity (plant species richness and functional group richness) and plant functional group identity on soil microbial biomass and soil microbial community structure in experimental grassland ecosystems. Total microbial biomass and community structure were determined by phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. The diversity gradient covered 1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species and 1, 2, 3 and 4 plant functional groups (grasses, legumes, small herbs and tall herbs). In May 2007, soil samples were taken from experimental plots and from nearby fields and meadows. Beside soil texture, plant species richness was the main driver of soil microbial biomass. Structural equation modeling revealed that the positive plant diversity effect was mainly mediated by higher leaf area index resulting in higher soil moisture in the top soil layer. The fungal-to-bacterial biomass ratio was positively affected by plant functional group richness and negatively by the presence of legumes. Bacteria were more closely related to abiotic differences caused by plant diversity, while fungi were more affected by plant-derived organic matter inputs. We found diverse plant communities promoted faster transition of soil microbial communities typical for arable land towards grassland communities. Although some mechanisms underlying the plant diversity effect on soil microorganisms could be identified, future studies have to determine plant traits shaping soil microbial community structure. We suspect differences in root traits among different plant communities, such as root turnover rates and chemical composition of root exudates, to structure soil microbial communities.

  12. Altitudinal Pattern of Plant Species Diversity in Shennongjia Mountains, Central China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chang-Ming ZHAO; Wei-Lie CHEN; Zi-Qiang TIAN; Zong-Qiang XIE

    2005-01-01

    One hundred and sixty plots, approximately every 100 m above sea level (a.s.l.) along an altitudinal gradient from 470 to 3 080 m a.s.l, at the southern and northern watershed of Mt. Shennongjia,China, were examined to determine the altitudinal pattern of plant species diversity. Mt. Shennongjia was found to have high plant species diversity, with 3 479 higher plants recorded. Partial correlation analysis and detrended canonical correspondence analysis (DCCA) based on plant species diversity revealed that altitude was the main factor affecting the spatial pattern of plant species diversity on Mt. Shennongjia and that canopy coverage of the arbor layer also had a considerable effect on plant species diversity. The DCCA based on species data of importance value further revealed that altitude gradient was the primary factor shaping the spatial pattern of plant species. In addition, the rule of the "mid-altitude bulge" was supported on Mt. Shennongjia. Plant species diversity was closely related to vegetation type and the transition zone usually had a higher diversity. Higher plant species diversity appeared in the mixed evergreen and deciduous broadleaved forest zone (900-1 500 m a.s.l.) and its transition down to evergreen broadleaved forest zone or up to deciduous broadleaved forest zone. The largest plant species diversity in whole communities on Mt. Shennongjia lay at approximately 1 200 m a.s.l. Greatest tree diversity, shrub diversity, and grass diversity was found at approximately 1 500, 1 100, and 1 200 m a.s.l., respectively. The southern watershed showed higher plant species diversity than the northern watershed, with maximum plant species diversity at a higher altitude in the southern watershed than the northern watershed. These results indicate that Mt.Shennongjia shows characteristics of a transition region. The relationship between the altitudinal pattern of plant species diversity and the vegetation type in eastern China are also discussed and a

  13. Decreases in ammonia volatilization in response to greater plant diversity in microcosms of constructed wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Bin; Ge, Ying; Han, Wenjuan; Fan, Xing; Ren, Yuan; Du, Yuanyuan; Shi, Mengmeng; Chang, Jie

    2016-10-01

    Ammonia volatilization from wastewaters with a high concentration of ammonium is a serious environmental and health problem. Constructed wetlands (CWs) are widely used for treating wastewater, and plant diversity clearly improves some functions of ecosystem such as nitrogen removal. However, whether plant diversity can affect ammonia volatilization from wastewater is still unknown. In this study, we conducted a microcosm experiment with different plant diversity treatments using four plant species. Results showed that, (1) ammonia volatilization decreased with increasing plant species richness; (2) ammonia volatilization from systems containing Rumex japonicus was lower than other systems; and (3) ammonia volatilization was affected more by species composition than species richness. This paper is the first to report that ammonia volatilization is reduced by plant diversity, and that some plant species combinations are important to reduce ammonia volatilization from CWs when treating wastewater.

  14. Invasive plant erodes local song diversity in a migratory passerine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortega, Yvette K; Benson, Aubree; Greene, Erick

    2014-02-01

    Exotic plant invasions threaten ecosystems globally, but we still know little about the specific consequences for animals. Invasive plants can alter the quality of breeding habitat for songbirds, thereby impacting important demographic traits such as dispersal, philopatry, and age structure. These demographic effects may in turn alter song-learning conditions to affect song structure and diversity. We studied Chipping Sparrows (Spizella passerina) breeding in six savannas that were either dominated by native vegetation or invaded by spotted knapweed (Centaurea stoebe), an exotic forb known to diminish food resources and reproductive success. Here, we report that the prevalence of older birds was relatively low in knapweed-invaded habitat, where recruitment of yearlings compensated for diminished site fidelity to sustain territory abundance. In both habitat types, yearling males tended to adopt songs similar to their neighbors and match the songs of older birds rather than introducing new song types, a pattern seen in many songbird species. As a consequence, in invaded habitat where age structure was skewed away from older birds serving as potential song models, yearlings converged on fewer song types. Similarity of songs among individuals was significantly higher and the overall number of song types averaged nearly 20% lower in invaded relative to native habitat. Degradation of habitat quality generally impacts site fidelity and age ratios in migratory songbirds and hence may commonly alter song-learning conditions. Associated shifts in song attributes known to influence reproductive success could in turn enforce demographic declines driven by habitat degradation. Local song structure may serve as an important indicator of habitat quality and population status for songbirds.

  15. Global assessment of nitrogen deposition effects on terrestrial plant diversity: a synthesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bobbink, R.; Hicks, K.; Galloway, J.; Spranger, T.; Alkemade, R.; Ashmore, M.R.; Bustamante, M.; Cinderby, S.; Davidson, E.; Dentener, F.; Emmett, B.; Erisman, J.W.; Fenn, M.; Gilliam, F.; Nordin, A.; Pardo, L.; Vries, de W.

    2010-01-01

    Atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition is a recognized threat to plant diversity in temperate and northern parts of Europe and North America. This paper assesses evidence from field experiments for N deposition effects and thresholds for terrestrial plant diversity protection across a latitudinal range

  16. Data from: Root biomass and exudates link plant diversity with soil bacterial and fungal biomass

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    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

  17. Plant-animal interactions in two forest herbs along a tree and herb diversity gradient

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vockenhuber, E.; Kabouw, P.; Tscharntke, T.; Scherber, C.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Plant diversity can influence numerous ecosystem processes, including plant–animal interactions, which, in turn, will affect plant growth and fitness. At present, little is known on how plant–animal interactions in forests respond to gradients in tree and herb-layer diversity. Aims: To q

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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

  19. Diversity of MAPs in some plant communities of Stara Planina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Obratov-Petković Dragica

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The high floristic diversity of Stara Planina was the starting base for the research of medicinal and aromatic plants (MAPs in individual forest and meadow communities. The sites Javor and Prelesje, forest community Fagetum moesiacae montanum B. Jov. 1953, pioneer community of birch Betuletum verrucosae s.l. and meadow community Agrostietum vulgaris (capillaris Pavlović, Z. 1955, were researched as follows: soil types, floristic composition and structure of the community, percentage of MAPs, as well as the selection of species which, according to the predetermined criteria can be recommended for further exploitation. The study shows that the soil of the forest communities is eutric brown, and meadow soils are dystric and eutric humus-siliceous. The percentage of MAPs in the floristic structure of the study sites in forest and meadow communities is 32.35%. The following species can be recommended for the collection and utilisation: Hypericum perforatum L., Asperula odorata L., Dryopteris filix-mas (L Schott. Urtica dioica L., Euphorbia amygdaloides L., Prunella grandiflora L. Tanacetum vulgare L., Achillea millefolium L., Rumex acetosa L., Campanula glomerata L., Stachys officinalis (L Trevis., Plantago lanceolata W. et K., Potentilla erecta (L Rauchel, Chamaespartium sagittale (L P. Gibbs. Cynanchum vincetoxicum (L Pers., Euphrasia stricta Host., Fagus moesiaca (Matt Liebl. and Fragaria vesca L.

  20. Links between plant litter chemistry, species diversity, and below-ground ecosystem function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Courtney L; Bowman, William D

    2008-12-16

    Decomposition is a critical source of plant nutrients, and drives the largest flux of terrestrial C to the atmosphere. Decomposing soil organic matter typically contains litter from multiple plant species, yet we lack a mechanistic understanding of how species diversity influences decomposition processes. Here, we show that soil C and N cycling during decomposition are controlled by the composition and diversity of chemical compounds within plant litter mixtures, rather than by simple metrics of plant species diversity. We amended native soils with litter mixtures containing up to 4 alpine plant species, and we used 9 litter chemical traits to evaluate the chemical composition (i.e., the identity and quantity of compounds) and chemical diversity of the litter mixtures. The chemical composition of the litter mixtures was the strongest predictor of soil respiration, net N mineralization, and microbial biomass N. Soil respiration and net N mineralization rates were also significantly correlated with the chemical diversity of the litter mixtures. In contrast, soil C and N cycling rates were poorly correlated with plant species richness, and there was no relationship between species richness and the chemical diversity of the litter mixtures. These results indicate that the composition and diversity of chemical compounds in litter are potentially important functional traits affecting decomposition, and simple metrics like plant species richness may fail to capture variation in these traits. Litter chemical traits therefore provide a mechanistic link between organisms, species diversity, and key components of below-ground ecosystem function.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-02-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Mooney, Kailen A

    2013-06-23

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-05-01

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

  4. Habitats as complex odour environments: how does plant diversity affect herbivore and parasitoid orientation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole Wäschke

    Full Text Available Plant diversity is known to affect success of host location by pest insects, but its effect on olfactory orientation of non-pest insect species has hardly been addressed. First, we tested in laboratory experiments the hypothesis that non-host plants, which increase odour complexity in habitats, affect the host location ability of herbivores and parasitoids. Furthermore, we recorded field data of plant diversity in addition to herbivore and parasitoid abundance at 77 grassland sites in three different regions in Germany in order to elucidate whether our laboratory results reflect the field situation. As a model system we used the herb Plantago lanceolata, the herbivorous weevil Mecinus pascuorum, and its larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus. The laboratory bioassays revealed that both the herbivorous weevil and its larval parasitoid can locate their host plant and host via olfactory cues even in the presence of non-host odour. In a newly established two-circle olfactometer, the weeviĺs capability to detect host plant odour was not affected by odours from non-host plants. However, addition of non-host plant odours to host plant odour enhanced the weeviĺs foraging activity. The parasitoid was attracted by a combination of host plant and host volatiles in both the absence and presence of non-host plant volatiles in a Y-tube olfactometer. In dual choice tests the parasitoid preferred the blend of host plant and host volatiles over its combination with non-host plant volatiles. In the field, no indication was found that high plant diversity disturbs host (plant location by the weevil and its parasitoid. In contrast, plant diversity was positively correlated with weevil abundance, whereas parasitoid abundance was independent of plant diversity. Therefore, we conclude that weevils and parasitoids showed the sensory capacity to successfully cope with complex vegetation odours when searching for hosts.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Hongwen

    2011-01-01

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

  6. Environmental conditions influence the plant functional diversity effect on potential denitrification.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariana E Sutton-Grier

    Full Text Available Global biodiversity loss has prompted research on the relationship between species diversity and ecosystem functioning. Few studies have examined how plant diversity impacts belowground processes; even fewer have examined how varying resource levels can influence the effect of plant diversity on microbial activity. In a field experiment in a restored wetland, we examined the role of plant trait diversity (or functional diversity, (FD and its interactions with natural levels of variability of soil properties, on a microbial process, denitrification potential (DNP. We demonstrated that FD significantly affected microbial DNP through its interactions with soil conditions; increasing FD led to increased DNP but mainly at higher levels of soil resources. Our results suggest that the effect of species diversity on ecosystem functioning may depend on environmental factors such as resource availability. Future biodiversity experiments should examine how natural levels of environmental variability impact the importance of biodiversity to ecosystem functioning.

  7. Long-term effects of plant diversity and composition on soil nematode communities in model grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viketoft, Maria; Bengtsson, Janne; Sohlenius, Björn; Berg, Matty P; Petchey, Owen; Palmborg, Cecilia; Huss-Danell, Kerstin

    2009-01-01

    An important component of plant-soil feedbacks is how plant species identity anddiversity influence soil organism communities. We examine the effects of grassland plant species growing alone and together up to a richness of 12 species on nematode diversity and feeding group composition, eight years after the establishment of experimental grassland plots at the BIODEPTH site in northern Sweden. This is a substantially longer time than most other experimental studies of plant effects on soil fauna. We address the hypotheses that (la) higher species or functional diversity of plants increases nematode diversity, as well as influences nematode community composition. Alternatively, (1b) individual plant species traits are most important for nematode diversity and community composition. (2) Plant effects on soil organisms will decrease with increasing number of trophic links between plants and soil fauna. Plant species identity was often more important than plant diversity for nematode community composition, supporting hypothesis 1b. There was a weak positive relation between plant and nematode richness;which could be attributed to the presence of the legume Trifolium pratense, but also to some other plant species, suggesting a selection or sampling effect. Several plant species in different functional groups affected nematode community composition. For example, we found that legumes increased bacterial-feeding nematodes, most notably r-selected Rhabditida, while fungal-feeding nematodes were enhanced by forbs. Other bacterial feeders and obligate root feeders were positively related to grasses. Plant effects were usually stronger on plant-, bacterial- and fungal-feeding nematodes than on omnivores/predators, which supports hypothesis 2. Our study suggests that plant identity has stronger effects than plant diversity on nematode community composition, but when comparing our results with similar previous studies the effects of particular plant species appear to vary. We

  8. Plant functional traits, functional diversity, and ecosystem functioning: current knowledge and perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lingjie Lei

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Increasing attention has recently been focused on the linkages between plant functional traits and ecosystem functioning. A comprehensive understanding of these linkages can facilitate to address the ecological consequences of plant species loss induced by human activities and climate change, and provide theoretical support for ecological restoration and ecosystem management. In recent twenty years, the evidence of strong correlations between plant functional traits and changes in ecosystem processes is growing. More importantly, ecosystem functioning can be predicted more precisely, using plant functional trait diversity (i.e., functional diversity than species diversity. In this paper, we first defined plant functional traits and their important roles in determining ecosystem processes. Then, we review recent advances in the relationships between ecosystem functions and plant functional traits and their diversity. Finally, we propose several important future research directions, including (1 exploration of the relationships between aboveground and belowground plant traits and their roles in determining ecosystem functioning, (2 incorporation of the impacts of consumer and global environmental change into the correlation between plant functional traits and ecosystem functioning, (3 effects of functional diversity on ecosystem multifunctionality, and (4 examination of the functional diversity-ecosystem functioning relationship at different temporal and spatial scales.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wood, Richard Thomas [ORNL; Belles, Randy [ORNL; Cetiner, Mustafa Sacit [ORNL; Holcomb, David Eugene [ORNL; Korsah, Kofi [ORNL; Loebl, Andy [ORNL; Mays, Gary T [ORNL; Muhlheim, Michael David [ORNL; Mullens, James Allen [ORNL; Poore III, Willis P [ORNL; Qualls, A L [ORNL; Wilson, Thomas L [ORNL; Waterman, Michael E. [U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

    2010-02-01

    This report presents the technical basis for establishing acceptable mitigating strategies that resolve diversity and defense-in-depth (D3) assessment findings and conform to U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) requirements. The research approach employed to establish appropriate diversity strategies involves investigation of available documentation on D3 methods and experience from nuclear power and nonnuclear industries, capture of expert knowledge and lessons learned, determination of best practices, and assessment of the nature of common-cause failures (CCFs) and compensating diversity attributes. The research described in this report does not provide guidance on how to determine the need for diversity in a safety system to mitigate the consequences of potential CCFs. Rather, the scope of this report provides guidance to the staff and nuclear industry after a licensee or applicant has performed a D3 assessment per NUREG/CR-6303 and determined that diversity in a safety system is needed for mitigating the consequences of potential CCFs identified in the evaluation of the safety system design features. Succinctly, the purpose of the research described in this report was to answer the question, 'If diversity is required in a safety system to mitigate the consequences of potential CCFs, how much diversity is enough?' The principal results of this research effort have identified and developed diversity strategies, which consist of combinations of diversity attributes and their associated criteria. Technology, which corresponds to design diversity, is chosen as the principal system characteristic by which diversity criteria are grouped to form strategies. The rationale for this classification framework involves consideration of the profound impact that technology-focused design diversity provides. Consequently, the diversity usage classification scheme involves three families of strategies: (1) different technologies, (2) different approaches within

  10. Analysis on Mineral Element Contents in Associated with Varietal Type in Core Collection of Yunnan Rice

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZENGYa-wen; LIUJia-fu; WANGLu-xiang; SHENShi-quan; LIZi-chao; WANGXiangkun; WENGuo-song; YANGZhong-yi

    2004-01-01

    Eight-element contents of 653 unpolished rice samples harvested from Xingping experiment farm, Yunnan Province under thc same ecological conditions were analyzed by ICP-AES method. The mineral elements content were closely related to low diversity, high-yielding, and multi-resistance breeding; The K, Mg, Ca and Mn content in high-yielding and resistant varieties were high, and other nutrients such as P, Fe, Zn and Cu were low, which was connected with the heredity and physiological mechanism of mineral nutrients. There is zonal distribution of mineral elements content from Yunnan rice, especially for P, Fe, Zn and Cu co-related with the diversity center, paddy versus upland, glutinous and non-glutinous, glumc-hair versus nuda, rice color, rice flavor, soft rice versus non-soft rice, but it did not find any association with indica-japonica types. The results supported the ecological variety group view of 5-grade taxonomic system "species-subspecies-ccological groups-ecological variety groups - varietal types" .

  11. The evolution of Paleozoic vascular land plant diversity of South China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2010-01-01

    Data of Paleozoic and some Early Triassic vascular land plant fossils from South China are synthetically analyzed,revealing evolutionary characteristics of Paleozoic vascular land plant diversity.Vascular land plant diversity keeps increasing in the Paleozoic as a whole.The Silurian witnessed the earliest evolution and initial diversification of land plants.From the Early Devonian to the Early Carboniferous(Mississippian),the great development,diversification,and differentiation really occurred in vascular land plants,with fluctuations of diversity,rapid replacement of the plant types,and an all-out takeover of terrestrial ecological niches.From the Early Permian,land plant diversity dramatically increased,and reached a climax in the Middle-Late Permian.Comparisons between late Paleozoic marine and terrestrial biodiversity reveal co-evolution of the late Paleozoic animals and plants as well as the individual evolutionary patterns of sea/land ecosystems.Vascular land plant diversity dramatically declined in the Frasnian as a result of the F/F event,and the end-Permian mass extinctions completely turned over the phytogroups.

  12. Geographical patterns in the beta diversity of China's woody plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Zhiheng; Fang, Jingyun; Tang, Zhiyao

    2012-01-01

    Beta diversity (i.e. species turnover rate across space) is fundamental for understanding mechanisms controlling large-scale species richness patterns. However, the influences on beta diversity are still a matter of debate. In particular, the relative role of environmental and spatial processes (...

  13. Habitat Heterogeneity Affects Plant and Arthropod Species Diversity and Turnover in Traditional Cornfields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, Eliana; Rös, Matthias; Bonilla, María Argenis; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    The expansion of the agricultural frontier by the clearing of remnant forests has led to human-dominated landscape mosaics. Previous studies have evaluated the effect of these landscape mosaics on arthropod diversity at local spatial scales in temperate and tropical regions, but little is known about fragmentation effects in crop systems, such as the complex tropical traditional crop systems that maintain a high diversity of weeds and arthropods in low-Andean regions. To understand the factors that influence patterns of diversity in human-dominated landscapes, we investigate the effect of land use types on plant and arthropod diversity in traditionally managed cornfields, via surveys of plants and arthropods in twelve traditional cornfields in the Colombian Andes. We estimated alpha and beta diversity to analyze changes in diversity related to land uses within a radius of 100 m to 1 km around each cornfield. We observed that forests influenced alpha diversity of plants, but not of arthropods. Agricultural lands had a positive relationship with plants and herbivores, but a negative relationship with predators. Pastures positively influenced the diversity of plants and arthropods. In addition, forest cover seemed to influence changes in plant species composition and species turnover of herbivore communities among cornfields. The dominant plant species varied among fields, resulting in high differentiation of plant communities. Predator communities also exhibited high turnover among cornfields, but differences in composition arose mainly among rare species. The crop system evaluated in this study represents a widespread situation in the tropics, therefore, our results can be of broad significance. Our findings suggest that traditional agriculture may not homogenize biological communities, but instead could maintain the regional pool of species through high beta diversity.

  14. Habitat Heterogeneity Affects Plant and Arthropod Species Diversity and Turnover in Traditional Cornfields.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eliana Martínez

    Full Text Available The expansion of the agricultural frontier by the clearing of remnant forests has led to human-dominated landscape mosaics. Previous studies have evaluated the effect of these landscape mosaics on arthropod diversity at local spatial scales in temperate and tropical regions, but little is known about fragmentation effects in crop systems, such as the complex tropical traditional crop systems that maintain a high diversity of weeds and arthropods in low-Andean regions. To understand the factors that influence patterns of diversity in human-dominated landscapes, we investigate the effect of land use types on plant and arthropod diversity in traditionally managed cornfields, via surveys of plants and arthropods in twelve traditional cornfields in the Colombian Andes. We estimated alpha and beta diversity to analyze changes in diversity related to land uses within a radius of 100 m to 1 km around each cornfield. We observed that forests influenced alpha diversity of plants, but not of arthropods. Agricultural lands had a positive relationship with plants and herbivores, but a negative relationship with predators. Pastures positively influenced the diversity of plants and arthropods. In addition, forest cover seemed to influence changes in plant species composition and species turnover of herbivore communities among cornfields. The dominant plant species varied among fields, resulting in high differentiation of plant communities. Predator communities also exhibited high turnover among cornfields, but differences in composition arose mainly among rare species. The crop system evaluated in this study represents a widespread situation in the tropics, therefore, our results can be of broad significance. Our findings suggest that traditional agriculture may not homogenize biological communities, but instead could maintain the regional pool of species through high beta diversity.

  15. Positive effects of plant genotypic and species diversity on anti-herbivore defenses in a tropical tree species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xoaquín Moreira

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

  16. Is plant temporal beta diversity of field margins related to changes in management practices?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alignier, Audrey; Baudry, Jacques

    2016-08-01

    Field margins have considerable ecological significance in agriculture-dominated landscapes by supporting biodiversity and associated services. However, agricultural changes during mid-20th century led to their drastic loss with a serious threat for biodiversity. Using time-series data, we aimed to get better insights into processes underlying plant patterns of field margins through time by i) quantifying plant temporal beta diversity components, ii) assessing whether the observed changes in plant communities can be related to changes in management practices applied to field margins. During the springs of 1994, 1998 and 2001, we surveyed plant communities and management practices of the same 116 field margins in three contrasted landscapes. We estimated temporal beta diversity in plant communities and partitioned it into its two dissimilarity resultant components, accounting for replacement of species (i.e. turnover) and for the nested gain or loss of species (i.e. nestedness). We then tested whether the observed changes in plant communities between 1994 and 1998 and, between 1998 and 2001 were related to changes in management practices using linear models. Plant communities of field margins exhibited strong temporal beta diversity dominated by turnover. Temporal turnover in plant communities was partly related to changes in management practices, i.e., a decrease of grazing concomitant to an increase of herbicide spraying. However, relationships were not consistent between all landscape contexts nor time period, suggesting that other unmeasured deterministic or stochastic processes could be driving the observed plant patterns. Taken together, our results suggest that maintaining a wide diversity of field margins with contrasted management contribute to maintaining plant diversity at a landscape scale. They underline the value of investigating plant temporal diversity patterns using time-series data and thus, the need to develop long-term studies making it possible

  17. Plants Species Diversity in Hyrcanian Hardwood Forests, Northern Iran (Case Study: Mazandaran Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kambiz Abrari Vajari

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available In order to better understand and manage forest ecosystems, it is important to study the relationship between environmental factors and plants in these ecosystems. We investigated plant species diversity of three hardwood forest stands in the Hyrcanian forests, Sari, northern Iran. Our aim was to determine the effect of forest stand type on the diversity of plant species. One plot 150 × 150 m established at the center of each forest stand and in each plot, nine subplots 50 × 50 m were selected. Diversity values (Richness, diversity and evenness indices were measured in five sample areas 0.01 ha per 50 × 50 m quadrates by estimating cover percentage of each species. The results showed that Geophytes (43.33% had the highest life form spectrum among species. JACCARD'S similarity index revealed that the highest values exist between Parrotia-Carpinus and Carpinus stands. All herb layer species diversity indices varied significantly among different forest stands. Cover percentage significantly positively correlated with diversity indices in Parrotia-Carpinus stand. Diversity and richness indices of herb-layers plants were significantly negatively correlated with cover percentage in Fagus stand. Correlation analysis between all diversity measures and cover percentage in Carpinus stand wasn't significant. The result of the present study revealed that species diversity in temperate broad-leaved deciduous forest was significantly influenced by forest stand type

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunzhao Li

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The 26 sample sites in 7 study plots adjacent to asphalt road and earth road in coastal wetland in the Yellow River Delta were selected to quantify plant diversity using quadrat sampling method in plant bloom phase of July and August 2012. The indice of βT and Jaccard’s coefficient were applied to evaluate the species diversity. The results showed that the plant diversities and alien plants were high in the range of 0–20 m to the road verge. There were more exotics and halophytes in plots of asphalt roadside than that of earth roadside. However, proportion of halophytes in habitats of asphalt roadsides was lower than that of earth roadside. By comparing β-diversity, there were more common species in the asphalt roadsides than that in the earth roadsides. The similarity of plant communities in studied plots of asphalt roadsides and earth roadsides increased with increasing the distance to road verge. The effect range of roads for plant diversity in study region was about 20 m to road verge. Our results indicate that the construction and maintenance of roads in wetland could increase the plant species diversities of communities and risk of alien species invasion.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-04-01

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

  20. Microbiome interplay: plants alter microbial abundance and diversity within the built environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahnert, Alexander; Moissl-Eichinger, Christine; Berg, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    The built indoor microbiome has importance for human health. Residents leave their microbial fingerprint but nothing is known about the transfer from plants. Our hypothesis that indoor plants contribute substantially to the microbial abundance and diversity in the built environment was experimentally confirmed as proof of principle by analyzing the microbiome of the spider plant Chlorophytum comosum in relation to their surroundings. The abundance of Archaea, Bacteria, and Eukaryota (fungi) increased on surrounding floor and wall surfaces within 6 months of plant isolation in a cleaned indoor environment, whereas the microbial abundance on plant leaves and indoor air remained stable. We observed a microbiome shift: the bacterial diversity on surfaces increased significantly but fungal diversity decreased. The majority of cells were intact at the time of samplings and thus most probably alive including diverse Archaea as yet unknown phyllosphere inhabitants. LEfSe and network analysis showed that most microbes were dispersed from plant leaves to the surrounding surfaces. This led to an increase of specific taxa including spore-forming fungi with potential allergic potential but also beneficial plant-associated bacteria, e.g., Paenibacillus. This study demonstrates for the first time that plants can alter the microbiome of a built environment, which supports the significance of plants and provides insights into the complex interplay of plants, microbiomes and human beings.

  1. Microbiome interplay: plants alter microbial abundance and diversity within the built environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander eMahnert

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The built indoor microbiome has importance for human health. Residents leave their microbial fingerprint but nothing is known about the transfer from plants. Our hypothesis that indoor plants contribute substantially to the microbial abundance and diversity in the built environment was experimentally confirmed as proof of principle by analyzing the microbiome of the spider plant Chlorophytum comosum in relation to their surroundings. The abundance of Archaea, Bacteria and Eukaryota (fungi increased on surrounding floor and wall surfaces within six months of plant isolation in a cleaned indoor environment, whereas the microbial abundance on plant leaves and indoor air remained stable. We observed a microbiome shift: the bacterial diversity on surfaces increased significantly but fungal diversity decreased. The majority of cells were intact at the time of samplings and thus most probably alive including diverse Archaea as yet unknown phyllosphere inhabitants. LEfSe and network analysis showed that most microbes were dispersed from plant leaves to the surrounding surfaces. This led to an increase of specific taxa including spore-forming fungi with potential allergic potential but also beneficial plant-associated bacteria, e.g. Paenibacillus. This study demonstrates for the first time that plants can alter the microbiome of a built environment, which supports the significance of plants and provides insights into the complex interplay of plants, microbiomes and human beings.

  2. Modeling terrestrial carbon and water dynamics across climatic gradients: does plant trait diversity matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pappas, Christoforos; Fatichi, Simone; Burlando, Paolo

    2016-01-01

    Plant trait diversity in many vegetation models is crudely represented using a discrete classification of a handful of 'plant types' (named plant functional types; PFTs). The parameterization of PFTs reflects mean properties of observed plant traits over broad categories ignoring most of the inter- and intraspecific plant trait variability. Taking advantage of a multivariate leaf-trait distribution (leaf economics spectrum), as well as documented plant drought strategies, we generate an ensemble of hypothetical species with coordinated attributes, rather than using few PFTs. The behavior of these proxy species is tested using a mechanistic ecohydrological model that translates plant traits into plant performance. Simulations are carried out for a range of climates representative of different elevations and wetness conditions in the European Alps. Using this framework we investigate the sensitivity of ecosystem response to plant trait diversity and compare it with the sensitivity to climate variability. Plant trait diversity leads to highly divergent vegetation carbon dynamics (fluxes and pools) and to a lesser extent water fluxes (transpiration). Abiotic variables, such as soil water content and evaporation, are only marginally affected. These results highlight the need for revising the representation of plant attributes in vegetation models. Probabilistic approaches, based on observed multivariate whole-plant trait distributions, provide a viable alternative.

  3. Impact of urbanization on plant diversity: A case study in built-up areas of Beijing

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIANG Yao-qin; LI Jing-wen; LI Jing; Sanna Katrina VALIMAKI

    2008-01-01

    Urbanization is developing rapidly in the world, which seriously changes the habitat of organisms and has clearly a negative effect on biodiversity. Preservation of biodlversity is crucial in urban planning and management, which is also an important symbol for the level of greening. Problems such as scarcity of urban green space and plant species have become obstacles to the establishment of ecological friendly cities. However, coexistence of nature and modernization, as well the coordination of economic development and biodiversity, are goals that people are seeking. We have taken the built-up areas of Beijing as a study case and discussed the impacts of urbanization on plant diversity, with the support of fieldwork and SPOT remote sensing data. The results are as follows: 1) in the process of urbanization, exotic plants have been widely introduced, which has affected species composition and the proportion of native plants; it is clear that artificial green spaces always will have a lower level of plant diversity than natural green spaces; 2) functional differences of green space types partially decide their species abundance, so that plant diversity in greenbelts and streets is generally lower than in parks; 3) the spatial variety of plant diversity contributes much to the imbalance of district development and the planning of different functional zones; this variation is embodied in different ring-belts and directions; 4) habitat fragmentation also affects plant diversity to a great extent; there is a significant positive correlation between high fragmentation and low plant diversity. According our results, some suggestions are proposed, which would be suitable for the preservation of plant diversity and ecological improvement during urbanization.

  4. Habitat fragmentation, tree diversity, and plant invasion interact to structure forest caterpillar communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stireman, John O; Devlin, Hilary; Doyle, Annie L

    2014-09-01

    Habitat fragmentation and invasive species are two of the most prominent threats to terrestrial ecosystems. Few studies have examined how these factors interact to influence the diversity of natural communities, particularly primary consumers. Here, we examined the effects of forest fragmentation and invasion of exotic honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii, Caprifoliaceae) on the abundance and diversity of the dominant forest herbivores: woody plant-feeding Lepidoptera. We systematically surveyed understory caterpillars along transects in 19 forest fragments over multiple years in southwestern Ohio and evaluated how fragment area, isolation, tree diversity, invasion by honeysuckle and interactions among these factors influence species richness, diversity and abundance. We found strong seasonal variation in caterpillar communities, which responded differently to fragmentation and invasion. Abundance and richness increased with fragment area, but these effects were mitigated by high levels of honeysuckle, tree diversity, landscape forest cover, and large recent changes in area. Honeysuckle infestation was generally associated with decreased caterpillar abundance and diversity, but these effects were strongly dependent on other fragment traits. Effects of honeysuckle on abundance were moderated when fragment area, landscape forest cover and tree diversity were high. In contrast, negative effects of honeysuckle invasion on caterpillar diversity were most pronounced in fragments with high tree diversity and large recent increases in area. Our results illustrate the complex interdependencies of habitat fragmentation, plant diversity and plant invasion in their effects on primary consumers and emphasize the need to consider these processes in concert to understand the consequences of anthropogenic habitat change for biodiversity.

  5. PLANT DIVERSITY OF THE ZHELTOKAMENSKIY OPEN CAST MINES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yarova T.A.

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Floristic structure data of soil algae, lichens, mosses, and vascular plants are given. Rare plant species which are protected at the Ukrainian, European, and International levels were revealed. The species list of trees and bushes was conducted. The soil analysis was carried out by such parameters: pH-value, the maintenance of hygroscopic water, the maintenance of mineral substances. Vegetation biomass on the open cast mines sample areas is defined. Ecological analysis of the biotopes of registered algae species was performed. The ecological analysis of the vascular plants species biotopes was carried out.The estimation of the perspective vegetation pattern was suggested for natural restoration of the open cast mines. The plant species are selected according to the ecological and morphological characteristics for plant rehabilitation and planting of open cast mines.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  7. Exploring Genetic Diversity in Plants Using High-Throughput Sequencing Techniques.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onda, Yoshihiko; Mochida, Keiichi

    2016-08-01

    Food security has emerged as an urgent concern because of the rising world population. To meet the food demands of the near future, it is required to improve the productivity of various crops, not just of staple food crops. The genetic diversity among plant populations in a given species allows the plants to adapt to various environmental conditions. Such diversity could therefore yield valuable traits that could overcome the food-security challenges. To explore genetic diversity comprehensively and to rapidly identify useful genes and/or allele, advanced high-throughput sequencing techniques, also called next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies, have been developed. These provide practical solutions to the challenges in crop genomics. Here, we review various sources of genetic diversity in plants, newly developed genetic diversity-mining tools synergized with NGS techniques, and related genetic approaches such as quantitative trait locus analysis and genome-wide association study.

  8. Generalist birds promote tropical forest regeneration and increase plant diversity via rare-biased seed dispersal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlo, Tomás A; Morales, Juan M

    2016-07-01

    Regenerated forests now compose over half of the world's tropical forest cover and are increasingly important as providers of ecosystem services, freshwater, and biodiversity conservation. Much of the value and functionality of regenerating forests depends on the plant diversity they contain. Tropical forest diversity is strongly shaped by mutualistic interactions between plants and fruit-eating animals (frugivores) that disperse seeds. Here we show how seed dispersal by birds can influence the speed and diversity of early successional forests in Puerto Rico. For two years, we monitored the monthly fruit production of bird-dispersed plants on a fragmented landscape, and measured seed dispersal activity of birds and plant establishment in experimental plots located in deforested areas. Two predominantly omnivorous bird species, the Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) and the Gray Kingbird (Tyrannus dominicensis), proved critical for speeding up the establishment of woody plants and increasing the species richness and diversity of the seed rain in deforested areas. Seed dispersal by these generalists increased the odds for rare plant species to disperse and establish in experimental forest-regeneration plots. Results indicate that birds that mix fruit and insects in their diets and actively forage across open and forested habitats can play keystone roles in the regeneration of mutualistic plant-animal communities. Furthermore, our analyses reveal that rare-biased (antiapostatic) frugivory and seed dispersal is the mechanism responsible for increasing plant diversity in the early-regenerating community. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  9. Diversity of ABC transporter genes across the plant kingdom and their potential utility in biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, Thomas S; Rempe, Caroline S; Davitt, Jack; Staton, Margaret E; Peng, Yanhui; Soltis, Douglas Edward; Melkonian, Michael; Deyholos, Michael; Leebens-Mack, James H; Chase, Mark; Rothfels, Carl J; Stevenson, Dennis; Graham, Sean W; Yu, Jun; Liu, Tao; Pires, J Chris; Edger, Patrick P; Zhang, Yong; Xie, Yinlong; Zhu, Ying; Carpenter, Eric; Wong, Gane Ka-Shu; Stewart, C Neal

    2016-05-31

    The ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter gene superfamily is ubiquitous among extant organisms and prominently represented in plants. ABC transporters act to transport compounds across cellular membranes and are involved in a diverse range of biological processes. Thus, the applicability to biotechnology is vast, including cancer resistance in humans, drug resistance among vertebrates, and herbicide and other xenobiotic resistance in plants. In addition, plants appear to harbor the highest diversity of ABC transporter genes compared with any other group of organisms. This study applied transcriptome analysis to survey the kingdom-wide ABC transporter diversity in plants and suggest biotechnology applications of this diversity. We utilized sequence similarity-based informatics techniques to infer the identity of ABC transporter gene candidates from 1295 phylogenetically-diverse plant transcriptomes. A total of 97,149 putative (approximately 25 % were full-length) ABC transporter gene members were identified; each RNA-Seq library (plant sample) had 88 ± 30 gene members. As expected, simpler organisms, such as algae, had fewer unique members than vascular land plants. Differences were also noted in the richness of certain ABC transporter subfamilies. Land plants had more unique ABCB, ABCC, and ABCG transporter gene members on average (p plant groups (p plant groups. An increase in the number of gene family members present in the ABCB, ABCC, and ABCD transporter subfamilies may indicate an expansion of the ABC transporter superfamily among green land plants, which include all crop species. The striking difference between the number of ABCA subfamily transporter gene members between ferns and other plant taxa is surprising and merits further investigation. Discussed is the potential exploitation of ABC transporters in plant biotechnology, with an emphasis on crops.

  10. Soil microbes contribute to the classic plant diversity-productivity pattern

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schnitzer, S.A.; Klironomos, J.N.; HilleRisLambers, J.; Kinkel, L.L.; Reich, P.B.; Nes, van E.H.; Scheffer, M.

    2011-01-01

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

  11. Use of Multispectral Imaging in Varietal Identification of Tomato

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shrestha, Santosh; Deleuran, Lise Christina; Olesen, Merete Halkjær

    2015-01-01

    Abstract: Multispectral imaging is an emerging non-destructive technology. In this work its potential for varietal discrimination and identification of tomato cultivars of Nepal was investigated. Two sample sets were used for the study, one with two parents and their crosses and other with eleven...... of parents and offspring. nCDA was also used for pairwise discrimination of the eleven cultivars, which correctly discriminated upto 100% and only few pairs below 85%. Partial least square discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) was further used to classify all the cultivars. The model displayed an overall...... classification accuracy of 82%, which was further improved to 96% and 86% with stepwise PLS-DA models on high (seven) and poor (four) sensitivity cultivars, respectively. The stepwise PLS-DA models had satisfactory classification errors for cross-validation and prediction 7% and 7%, respectively. The results...

  12. Above- and below-ground effects of plant diversity depend on species origin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kuebbing, Sara E.; Classen, Aimee Taylor; Sanders, Nate

    2015-01-01

    Although many plant communities are invaded by multiple nonnative species, we have limited information on how a species' origin affects ecosystem function. We tested how differences in species richness and origin affect productivity and seedling establishment. We created phylogenetically paired...... native and nonnative plant communities in a glasshouse experiment to test diversity-productivity relationships and responsible mechanisms (i.e. selection or complementarity effects). Additionally, we tested how productivity and associated mechanisms influenced seedling establishment. We used diversity...

  13. Diverse Lifestyles and Strategies of Plant Pathogenesis Encoded in the Genomes of Eighteen Doethideomycetes Fungi

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ohm, Robin A.; Feau, Nicolas; Henrissat, Bernard; Schoch, Conrad L.; Horwitz, Benjamin A.; Barry, Kerrie W.; Condon, Bradford J.; Copeland, Alex C.; Dhillon, Braham; Glaser, Fabien; Hesse, Cedar N.; Kosti, Idit; LaButti, Kurt; Lindquist, Erika A.; Lucas, Susan; Salamov, Asaf A.; Bradshaw, Rosie E.; Ciuffetti, Lynda; Hamelin, Richard C.; Kema, Gert H. J.; Lawrence, Christopher; Scott, James A.; Spatafora, Joseph W.; Turgeon, B. Gillian; de Wit, Pierre J. G. M.; Zhong, Shaobin; Goodwin, Stephen B.; Grigoriev, Igor V.

    2012-03-13

    The class of Dothideomycetes is one of the largest and most diverse groups of fungi. Many are plant pathogens and pose a serious threat to agricultural crops grown for biofuel, food or feed. Most Dothideomycetes have only a single host and related species can have very diverse host plants. Eighteen genomes of Dothideomycetes have currently been sequenced by the Joint Genome Institute and other sequencing centers. Here we describe the results of comparative analyses of the fungi in this group.

  14. Diverse Lifestyles and Strategies of Plant Pathogenesis Encoded in the Genomes of Eighteen Dothideomycetes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ohm, Robin A.; Feau, Nicolas; Henrissat, Bernard; Schoch, Conrad L.; Horwitz, Benjamin A.; Barry, Kerrie W.; Condon, Bradford J.; Copeland, Alex C.; Dhillon, Braham; Glaser, Fabian; Hesse, Cedar N.; Kosti, Idit; LaButti, Kurt; Lindquist, Erika A.; Lucas, Susan; Salamov, Asaf A.; Bradshaw, Rosie E.; Ciuffetti, Lynda; Hamelin, Richard C.; Kema, Gert H. J.; Lawrence, Christopher; Scott, James A.; Spatafora, Joseph W.; Turgeon, B. Gillian; de Wit, Pierre J. G. M.; Zhong, Shaobin; Goodwin, Stephen B.; Grigoriev, Igor V.

    2013-03-05

    The class of Dothideomycetes is one of the largest and most diverse groups of fungi. Many are plant pathogens and pose a serious threat to agricultural crops that are grown for biofuel, food or feed. Most Dothideomycetes have only a single host plant, and related species can have very diverse hosts. Eighteen genomes of Dothideomycetes have currently been sequenced by the Joint Genome Institute and other sequencing centers. Here we describe the results of comparative analyses of the fungi in this group.

  15. Restoration and management for plant diversity enhances the rate of belowground ecosystem recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klopf, Ryan P; Baer, Sara G; Bach, Elizabeth M; Six, Johan

    2017-03-01

    The positive relationship between plant diversity and ecosystem functioning has been criticized for its applicability at large scales and in less controlled environments that are relevant to land management. To inform this gap between ecological theory and application, we compared recovery rates of belowground properties using two chronosequences consisting of continuously cultivated and independently restored fields with contrasting diversity management strategies: grasslands restored with high plant richness and managed for diversity with frequent burning (n = 20) and grasslands restored with fewer species that were infrequently burned (n = 15). Restoration and management for plant diversity resulted in 250% higher plant richness. Greater recovery of roots and more predictable recovery of the active microbial biomass across the high diversity management strategy chronosequence corresponded with faster recovery of soil structure. The high diversity grasslands also had greater nutrient conservation indicated by lower available inorganic nitrogen. Thus, mesic grasslands restored with more species and managed for high plant diversity with frequent burning enhances the rate of belowground ecosystem recovery from long-term disturbance at a scale relevant to conservation practices on the landscape.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becerra, Judith X

    2015-05-12

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

  17. Plant Species Diversity along an Altitudinal Gradient of Bhabha Valley in Western Himalaya

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Amit Chawla; S. Rajkumar; K.N. Singh; Brij Lal; R.D. Singh; A. K. Thukral

    2008-01-01

    The present study highlights the rich species diversity of higher plants in the Bhabha Valley of western Himalaya in India. The analysis of species diversity revealed that a total of 313 species of higher plants inhabit the valley with a charactersfic of moist alpine shrub vegetation. The herbaceous life forms dominate and increase with increasing altitude. The major representations are from the families Asteraceae, Rosaceae, Lamiaceae and Poaceae, suggesting thereby the alpine meadow nature of the study area. The effect of altitude on species diversity displays a hump-shaped curve which may be attributed to increase in habitat diversity at the median ranges and relatively less habitat diversity at higher altitudes. The anthropogenic pressure at lower altitudes results in low plant diversity towards the bottom of the valley with most of the species being exotic in nature. Though the plant diversity is less at higher altitudinal ranges, the uniqueness is relatively high with high species replacement rates. More than 90% of variability in the species diversity could be explained using appropriate quantitative and statistical analysis along the altitudinal gradient. The valley harbours 18 threatened and 41 endemic species, most of which occur at higher altitudinal gradients due to habitat specificity.

  18. Plant diversity and functional groups affect Si and Ca pools in aboveground biomass of grassland systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaller, Jörg; Roscher, Christiane; Hillebrand, Helmut; Weigelt, Alexandra; Oelmann, Yvonne; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Ebeling, Anne; Weisser, Wolfgang W

    2016-09-01

    Plant diversity is an important driver of nitrogen and phosphorus stocks in aboveground plant biomass of grassland ecosystems, but plant diversity effects on other elements also important for plant growth are less understood. We tested whether plant species richness, functional group richness or the presence/absence of particular plant functional groups influences the Si and Ca concentrations (mmol g(-1)) and stocks (mmol m(-2)) in aboveground plant biomass in a large grassland biodiversity experiment (Jena Experiment). In the experiment including 60 temperate grassland species, plant diversity was manipulated as sown species richness (1, 2, 4, 8, 16) and richness and identity of plant functional groups (1-4; grasses, small herbs, tall herbs, legumes). We found positive species richness effects on Si as well as Ca stocks that were attributable to increased biomass production. The presence of particular functional groups was the most important factor explaining variation in aboveground Si and Ca stocks (mmol m(-2)). Grass presence increased the Si stocks by 140 % and legume presence increased the Ca stock by 230 %. Both the presence of specific plant functional groups and species diversity altered Si and Ca stocks, whereas Si and Ca concentration were affected mostly by the presence of specific plant functional groups. However, we found a negative effect of species diversity on Si and Ca accumulation, by calculating the deviation between mixtures and mixture biomass proportions, but in monoculture concentrations. These changes may in turn affect ecosystem processes such as plant litter decomposition and nutrient cycling in grasslands.

  19. Molecular diversity at the plant-pathogen interface.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDowell, John M; Simon, Stacey A

    2008-01-01

    Plants have evolved a robust innate immune system that exhibits striking similarities as well as significant differences with various metazoan innate immune systems. For example, plants are capable of perceiving pathogen-associated molecular patterns through pattern recognition receptors that bear structural similarities to animal Toll-like receptors. In addition, plants have evolved a second surveillance system based on cytoplasmic "NB-LRR" proteins (nucleotide-binding, leucine-rich repeat) that are structurally similar to animal nucleotide-binding and oligomerization domain (NOD)-like receptors. Plant NB-LRR proteins do not detect PAMPs; rather, they perceive effector proteins that pathogens secrete into plant cells to promote virulence. This review summarizes the current state of knowledge about the molecular functionality and evolution of these immune surveillance genes.

  20. Generic and functional diversity in endophytic actinomycetes from wild Compositae plant species at South Sinai - Egypt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Shatoury, Sahar A; El-Kraly, Omnia A; Trujillo, Martha E; El-Kazzaz, Waleed M; El-Din, El-Sayeda Gamal; Dewedar, Ahmed

    2013-09-01

    The diversity of culturable endophytic actinomycetes associated with wild Compositae plants is scantily explored. In this study, one hundred and thirty one endophytic actinobacteria were isolated from ten Compositae plant species collected from South Sinai in Egypt. Microscopic and chemotaxonomic investigation of the isolates indicated fourteen genera. Rare genera, such as Microtetraspora, and Intrasporangium, which have never been previously reported to be endophytic, were identified. Each plant species accommodated between three to eight genera of actinobacteria and unidentified strains were recovered from seven plant species. The generic diversity analysis of endophytic assemblages grouped the plant species into three main clusters, representing high, moderate and low endophytic diversity. The endophytes showed high functional diversity, based on forty four catabolic and plant growth promotion traits; providing some evidence that such traits could represent key criteria for successful residence of endophytes in the endosphere. Stress-tolerance traits were more predictive measure of functional diversity differences between the endophyte assemblages (Shannon's index, p = 0.01). The results indicate a potential prominent role of endophytes for their hosts and emphasize the potency of plant endosphere as a habitat for actinobacteria with promising future applications.

  1. Facilitation contributes to Mediterranean woody plant diversity but does not shape the diversity-productivity relationship along aridity gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rey, Pedro J; Alcántara, Julio M; Manzaneda, Antonio J; Sánchez-Lafuente, Alfonso M

    2016-07-01

    The diversity-productivity relationship (humped-back model (HBM)) and the stress-gradient (SGH) hypotheses may be connected when productivity is limited primarily by aridity. We analytically connect both hypotheses and assess the contribution of facilitation to woody plant richness along the aridity gradient of the Western Mediterranean floristic region. We monitored regeneration niches of woody plants, obtaining rarefied species richness and plant relative interaction indices in 54 forests and scrublands in a 1750-km geographical range across Spain, Morocco and the Canary Islands. We verified the monotonic increase in facilitation with aridity postulated by SGH and the humped-shape pattern of species richness expected from HBM, which became manifest after expanding the aridity gradient or crossing vegetation types. Along the gradient, interaction balance turned into facilitation earlier in forest than in scrublands. The effects of aridity and interaction balance on species diversity were additive rather than interdependent. Facilitation is an important driver of woody species richness at macroecological scales because it added up to diversity in most sites, with enhanced contribution with increased stress. The HBM was not shaped by species interactions. Results suggest that facilitation may act in Mediterranean vegetation buffering against critical transitions between states allowing woody plant communities to cope with the rise in aridity expected with global warming.

  2. Diversity, classification and function of the plant protein kinase superfamily.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehti-Shiu, Melissa D; Shiu, Shin-Han

    2012-09-19

    Eukaryotic protein kinases belong to a large superfamily with hundreds to thousands of copies and are components of essentially all cellular functions. The goals of this study are to classify protein kinases from 25 plant species and to assess their evolutionary history in conjunction with consideration of their molecular functions. The protein kinase superfamily has expanded in the flowering plant lineage, in part through recent duplications. As a result, the flowering plant protein kinase repertoire, or kinome, is in general significantly larger than other eukaryotes, ranging in size from 600 to 2500 members. This large variation in kinome size is mainly due to the expansion and contraction of a few families, particularly the receptor-like kinase/Pelle family. A number of protein kinases reside in highly conserved, low copy number families and often play broadly conserved regulatory roles in metabolism and cell division, although functions of plant homologues have often diverged from their metazoan counterparts. Members of expanded plant kinase families often have roles in plant-specific processes and some may have contributed to adaptive evolution. Nonetheless, non-adaptive explanations, such as kinase duplicate subfunctionalization and insufficient time for pseudogenization, may also contribute to the large number of seemingly functional protein kinases in plants.

  3. Photosynthetic diversity meets biodiversity: the C4 plant example.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sage, Rowan F; Stata, Matt

    2015-01-01

    Physiological diversification reflects adaptation for specific environmental challenges. As the major physiological process that provides plants with carbon and energy, photosynthesis is under strong evolutionary selection that gives rise to variability in nearly all parts of the photosynthetic apparatus. Here, we discuss how plants, notably those using C4 photosynthesis, diversified in response to environmental challenges imposed by declining atmospheric CO2 content in recent geological time. This reduction in atmospheric CO2 increases the rate of photorespiration and reduces photosynthetic efficiency. While plants have evolved numerous mechanisms to compensate for low CO2, the most effective are the carbon concentration mechanisms of C4, C2, and CAM photosynthesis; and the pumping of dissolved inorganic carbon, mainly by algae. C4 photosynthesis enables plants to dominate warm, dry and often salinized habitats, and to colonize areas that are too stressful for most plant groups. Because C4 lineages generally lack arborescence, they cannot form forests. Hence, where they predominate, C4 plants create a different landscape than would occur if C3 plants were to predominate. These landscapes (mostly grasslands and savannahs) present unique selection environments that promoted the diversification of animal guilds able to graze upon the C4 vegetation. Thus, the rise of C4 photosynthesis has made a significant contribution to the origin of numerous biomes in the modern biosphere.

  4. β-Diversity of functional groups of woody plants in a tropical dry forest in Yucatan.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Omar López-Martínez

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

  5. β-Diversity of functional groups of woody plants in a tropical dry forest in Yucatan.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  6. Geographical patterns in the beta diversity of China's woody plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Zhiheng; Fang, Jingyun; Tang, Zhiyao

    2012-01-01

    with their environmental niches due to dispersal limitation induced by China’s topography and/or their low dispersal ability. The projected rapid climatic changes will likely endanger such species. Species dispersal processes should be taken into account in future conservation strategies in China.......Beta diversity (i.e. species turnover rate across space) is fundamental for understanding mechanisms controlling large-scale species richness patterns. However, the influences on beta diversity are still a matter of debate. In particular, the relative role of environmental and spatial processes (e.......g. environmental niche versus dispersal limitation of species) remains elusive, and the influence of species range size has been poorly tested. Here, using distribution maps of 11 405 woody species in China (ca 9.6 ¿ 106 km2), we investigated 1) the geographical and directional patterns of beta diversity for all...

  7. Volume, value and floristic diversity of Gabon's medicinal plant markets

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Towns, A.M.; Quiroz Villarreal, D.K.; Guinee, L.; Boer, H.; Andel, van T.

    2014-01-01

    Ethnopharmacological relevance - African medicinal plant markets offer insight into commercially important species, salient health concerns in the region, and possible conservation priorities. Still, little quantitative data is available on the trade in herbal medicine in Central Africa. The aim of

  8. Volume, value and floristic diversity of Gabon's medicinal plant markets

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Towns, A.M.; Quiroz Villarreal, D.K.; Guinee, L.; Boer, H.; Andel, van T.

    2014-01-01

    Ethnopharmacological relevance - African medicinal plant markets offer insight into commercially important species, salient health concerns in the region, and possible conservation priorities. Still, little quantitative data is available on the trade in herbal medicine in Central Africa. The aim of

  9. effect of bush burning on herbaceous plant diversity in lagos state ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    conducted to assess the effect of bush burning on plant species diversity. Three frequently ... Data obtained for plants were compared using % frequency, % stand and Simpson and ... species are destroyed by fire and can become locally extinct if fire is too ..... unplanned fire in a semi-arid rangeland of South Africa. Journal ...

  10. Plant-associated microbiomes in arid lands: diversity, ecology and biotechnological potential

    KAUST Repository

    Soussi, Asma

    2015-08-28

    Background: Aridification is a worldwide serious threat directly affecting agriculture and crop production. In arid and desert areas, it has been found that microbial diversity is huge, built of microorganisms able to cope with the environmental harsh conditions by developing adaptation strategies. Plants growing in arid lands or regions facing prolonged abiotic stresses such as water limitation and salt accumulation have also developed specific physiological and molecular stress responses allowing them to thrive under normally unfavorable conditions. Scope: Under such extreme selection pressures, special root-associated bacterial assemblages, endowed with capabilities of plant growth promotion (PGP) and extremophile traits, are selected by the plants. In this review, we provide a general overview on the microbial diversity in arid lands and deserts versus specific microbial assemblages associated with plants. The ecological drivers that shape this diversity, how plant-associated microbiomes are selected, and their biotechnological potential are discussed. Conclusions: Selection and recruitment of the plant associated bacterial assemblages is mediated by the combination of the bio-pedo-agroclimatic conditions and the plant species or varieties. Diversity and functional redundancy of these associated PGPR makes them very active in supporting plant improvement, health and resistance to drought, salt and related stresses. Implementing proper biotechnological applications of the arid and desert-adapted PGPR constitute the challenge to be raised.

  11. Influence of plant species on population dynamics, genotypic diversity and antibiotic production by indigenous Pseudomonas spp

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bergsma-Vlami, M.; Prins, M.E.; Raaijmakers, J.M.

    2005-01-01

    The population dynamics, genotypic diversity and activity of naturally-occurring 2,4-diacetylphloroglucinol (DAPG)-producing Pseudomonas spp. was investigated for four plant species (wheat, sugar beet, potato, lily) grown in two different soils. All four plant species tested, except lily and in some

  12. The relative importance of host-plant genetic diversity in structuring the associated herbivore community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tack, Ayco J M; Roslin, Tomas

    2011-08-01

    Recent studies suggest that intraspecific genetic diversity in one species may leave a substantial imprint on the surrounding community and ecosystem. Here, we test the hypothesis that genetic diversity within host-plant patches translates into consistent and ecologically important changes in the associated herbivore community. More specifically, we use potted, grafted oak saplings to construct 41 patches of four saplings each, with one, two, or four tree genotypes represented among the host plants. These patches were divided among two common gardens. Focusing first at the level of individual trees, we assess how tree-specific genotypic identity, patch-level genetic diversity, garden-level environmental variation, and their interactions affect the structure of the herbivore community. At the level of host-plant patches, we analyze whether the joint responses of herbivore species to environmental variation and genetic diversity result in differences in species diversity among tree quartets. Strikingly, both species-specific abundances and species diversity varied substantially among host-tree genotypes, among common gardens, and among specific locations within individual gardens. In contrast, the genetic diversity of the patch left a detectable imprint on local abundances of only two herbivore taxa. In both cases, the effect of genetic diversity was inconsistent among gardens and among host-plant genotypes. While the insect community differed significantly among individual host-plant genotypes, there were no interactive effects of the number of different genotypes within the patch. Overall, additive effects of intraspecific genetic diversity of the host plant explained a similar or lower proportion (7-10%) of variation in herbivore species diversity than did variation among common gardens. Combined with the few previous studies published to date, our study suggests that the impact of host-plant genetic diversity on the herbivore community can range from none to

  13. Growing knowledge: an overview of Seed Plant diversity in Brazil

    OpenAIRE

    Zappi, Daniela C.; Filardi,Fabiana L. Ranzato; Leitman,Paula; Souza, Vinícius C.; Bruno M. T. Walter; José R. Pirani; Morim,Marli P.; de Queiroz, Luciano P.; Cavalcanti,Taciana B.; Mansano, Vidal F.; Forzza,Rafaela C.; Abreu,Maria C.; Acevedo-Rodríguez, Pedro; Agra,Maria de F.; Almeida Jr.,Eduardo B.

    2016-01-01

    An updated inventory of Brazilian seed plants is presented and offers important insights into the country’s biodiversity. This work started in 2010, with the publication of the Plants and Fungi Catalogue, and has been updated since by more than 430 specialists working online. Brazil is home to 32,086 native Angiosperms and 23 native Gymnosperms, showing an increase of 3% in its species richness in relation to 2010. The Amazon Rainforest is the richest Brazilian biome for Gymnosperms, while th...

  14. Phyllosphere microbiology with special reference to diversity and plant genotype

    OpenAIRE

    Whipps, J. M.; Hand, Paul; Pink, David; Bending, G. D.

    2008-01-01

    The phyllosphere represents the habitat provided by the aboveground parts of plants, and on a global scale supports a large and complex microbial community. Microbial interactions in the phyllosphere can affect the fitness of plants in natural communities, the productivity of agricultural crops, and the safety of horticultural produce for human consumption. The structure of phyllosphere communities reflects immigration, survival and growth of microbial colonists, which is influenced by numero...

  15. Invasive stink bug favors naïve plants: Testing the role of plant geographic origin in diverse, managed environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinson, Holly M; Bergmann, Erik J; Venugopal, P Dilip; Riley, Christopher B; Shrewsbury, Paula M; Raupp, Michael J

    2016-01-01

    With the introduction and establishment of exotic species, most ecosystems now contain both native and exotic plants and herbivores. Recent research identifies several factors that govern how specialist herbivores switch host plants upon introduction. Predicting the feeding ecology and impacts of introduced generalist species, however, remains difficult. Here, we examine how plant geographic origin, an indicator of shared co-evolutionary history, influences patterns of host use by a generalist, invasive herbivore, while accounting for variation in plant availability. The brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys, is a highly polyphagous Asian herbivore and an economically important invasive pest in North America and Europe. In visual surveys of 220 plant taxa in commercial nurseries in Maryland, USA, H. halys was more abundant on non-Asian plants and selected these over Asian plants. The relationship between the relative use of plants and their availability was strongly positive but depended also on plant origin at two of our three sites, where the higher relative use of non-Asian plants was greatest for highly abundant taxa. These results highlight the importance of considering both plant origin and relative abundance in understanding the selection of host plants by invasive generalist herbivores in diverse, natural and urban forests.

  16. Mobilization of interactions between functional diversity of plant and soil organisms on nitrogen availability and use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drut, Baptiste; Cassagne, Nathalie; Cannavacciuolo, Mario; Brauman, Alain; Le Floch, Gaëtan; Cobo, Jose; Fustec, Joëlle

    2017-04-01

    Keywords: legumes, earthworms, microorganisms, nitrogen, interactions Both aboveground and belowground biodiversity and their interactions can play an important role in crop productivity. Plant functional diversity, such as legume based intercrops have been shown to improve yields through plant complementarity for nitrogen use (Corre-Hellou et al., 2006). Moreover, plant species or plant genotype may influence the structure of soil microorganism communities through the composition of rhizodeposits in the rhizosphere (Dennis et al., 2010). Belowground diversity can also positively influence plant performance especially related to functional dissimilarity between soil organisms (Eisenhauer, 2012). Earthworms through their burrowing activity influence soil microbial decomposers and nutrient availability and have thus been reported to increase plant growth (Brown, 1995; Brown et al., 2004). We hypothesize that i) plant functional (genetic and/or specific) diversity associated to functional earthworms diversity are key drivers of interactions balance to improve crop performances and ii) the improvement of plant performances can be related to change in the structure of soil microorganism communities due to the diversity of rhizodeposits and the burrowing activity of earthworms. In a first mesocosm experiment, we investigated the effect of a gradient of plant diversity - one cultivar of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), 3 different wheat cultivars, and 3 different cultivars intercropped with clover (Trifolium hybridum L.) - and the presence of one (endogeic) or two (endogeic and anecic) categories of earthworms on biomass and nitrogen accumulation of wheat. In a second mesocosm experiment, we investigated the influence of three species with different rhizodeposition - wheat, rapeseed (Brassica napus L. ) and faba bean (Vicia faba L.) in pure stand or intercropped - and the presence of endogeic earthworms on microbial activity and nitrogen availability. In the first experiment

  17. Plant Glutathione Biosynthesis: Diversity in Biochemical Regulation and Reaction Products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashley eGalant

    2011-09-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  19. Effect of plantations on plant species diversity in the Darabkola, Mazandaran Province, North of Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    HASSAN POURBABAEI

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Pourbabaei H, Asgari F, Reif A, Abedi R. 2012. Effect of plantations on plant species diversity in the Darabkola, Mazandaran Province, North of Iran. Biodiversitas 13: 72-78. In this study, the effect of plantations on plant species diversity was investigated in Darabkola, Mazandaran province, north of Iran. To conduct the study, a natural mixed forest, a broad–leaved plantation (Alnus subcordata-Acer velutinum and a coniferous plantation (Cupressus sempervirens var. horizontalis-Pinus brutia were selected. 35 sampling plots were taken in systematic random method in each area. Data analysis was carried out using Simpson, Hill's N2, Shannon-Wiener and Mc Arthur's N1 diversity indices, Smith and Wilson evenness index and species richness. Results revealed that there were 32 plant species in natural forest and 30 plant species were found in each plantation. Rosaceae and Lamiaceae were the main families in the studied areas. Diversity and evenness indices of all vegetation layers had the most values in the natural forest. Richness of woody plants had the highest value in the natural forest, while herbaceous richness was the highest in coniferous plantation. Mc Arthur's N1 had the highest value among diversity indices and followed by Hill's N2, Shannon-Wiener and Simpson indices, respectively. In addition, results showed that there were significant differences among diversity, evenness and richness indices in all vegetation layers in the three studied areas.

  20. Potential benefits of plant diversity on vegetated roofs: a literature review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook-Patton, Susan C; Bauerle, Taryn L

    2012-09-15

    Although vegetated green roofs can be difficult to establish and maintain, they are an increasingly popular method for mitigating the negative environmental impacts of urbanization. Most green roof development has focused on maximizing green roof performance by planting one or a few drought-tolerant species. We present an alternative approach, which recognizes green roofs as dynamic ecosystems and employs a diversity of species. We draw links between the ecological and green roof literature to generate testable predictions about how increasing plant diversity could improve short- and long-term green roof functioning. Although we found few papers that experimentally manipulated diversity on green roofs, those that did revealed ecological dynamics similar to those in more natural systems. However, there are many unresolved issues. To improve overall green roof performance, we should (1) elucidate the links among plant diversity, structural complexity, and green roof performance, (2) describe feedback mechanisms between plant and animal diversity on green roofs, (3) identify species with complementary traits, and (4) determine whether diverse green roof communities are more resilient to disturbance and environmental change than less diverse green roofs.

  1. Evolutionary relationships and functional diversity of plant sulfate transporters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hideki eTakahashi

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Sulfate is an essential nutrient cycled in nature. Ion transporters that specifically facilitate the transport of sulfate across the membranes are found ubiquitously in living organisms. The phylogenetic analysis of known sulfate transporters and their homologous proteins from eukaryotic organisms indicate two evolutionarily distinct groups of sulfate transport systems. One major group named Tribe 1 represents yeast and fungal SUL, plant SULTR and animal SLC26 families. The evolutionary origin of SULTR family members in land plants and green algae is suggested to be common with yeast and fungal sulfate transporters (SUL and animal anion exchangers (SLC26. The lineage of plant SULTR family is expanded into four subfamilies (SULTR1 to SULTR4 in land plant species. By contrast, the putative SULTR homologues from Chlorophyte green algae are in two separate lineages; one with the subfamily of plant tonoplast-localized sulfate transporters (SULTR4, and the other diverged before the appearance of lineages for SUL, SULTR and SLC26. There also was a group of yet undefined members of putative sulfate transporters in yeast and fungi divergent from these major lineages in Tribe 1. The other distinct group is Tribe 2, primarily composed of animal sodium-dependent sulfate/carboxylate transporters (SLC13 and plant tonoplast-localized dicarboxylate transporters (TDT. The putative sulfur-sensing protein (SAC1 and SAC1-like transporters (SLT of Chlorophyte green algae, bryophyte and lycophyte show low degrees of sequence similarities with SLC13 and TDT. However, the phylogenetic relationship between SAC1/SLT and the other two families, SLC13 and TDT in Tribe 2, is not clearly supported. In addition, the SAC1/SLT family is completely absent in the angiosperm species analyzed. The present study suggests distinct evolutionary trajectories of sulfate transport systems for land plants and green algae.

  2. Assessing the diversity of bacterial communities associated with plants

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-01-01

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

  3. Soil fertility increases with plant species diversity in a long-term biodiversity experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dybzinski, Ray; Fargione, Joseph E; Zak, Donald R; Fornara, Dario; Tilman, David

    2008-11-01

    Most explanations for the positive effect of plant species diversity on productivity have focused on the efficiency of resource use, implicitly assuming that resource supply is constant. To test this assumption, we grew seedlings of Echinacea purpurea in soil collected beneath 10-year-old, experimental plant communities containing one, two, four, eight, or 16 native grassland species. The results of this greenhouse bioassay challenge the assumption of constant resource supply; we found that bioassay seedlings grown in soil collected from experimental communities containing 16 plant species produced 70% more biomass than seedlings grown in soil collected beneath monocultures. This increase was likely attributable to greater soil N availability, which had increased in higher diversity communities over the 10-year-duration of the experiment. In a distinction akin to the selection/complementarity partition commonly made in studies of diversity and productivity, we further determined whether the additive effects of functional groups or the interactive effects of functional groups explained the increase in fertility with diversity. The increase in bioassay seedling biomass with diversity was largely explained by a concomitant increase in N-fixer, C4 grass, forb, and C3 grass biomass with diversity, suggesting that the additive effects of these four functional groups at higher diversity contributed to enhance N availability and retention. Nevertheless, diversity still explained a significant amount of the residual variation in bioassay seedling biomass after functional group biomass was included in a multiple regression, suggesting that interactions also increased fertility in diverse communities. Our results suggest a mechanism, the fertility effect, by which increased plant species diversity may increase community productivity over time by increasing the supply of nutrients via both greater inputs and greater retention.

  4. Diversity of heterotrimeric G-protein γ subunits in plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Trusov Yuri

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Heterotrimeric G-proteins, consisting of three subunits Gα, Gβ and Gγ are present in most eukaryotes and mediate signaling in numerous biological processes. In plants, Gγ subunits were shown to provide functional selectivity to G-proteins. Three unconventional Gγ subunits were recently reported in Arabidopsis, rice and soybean but no structural analysis has been reported so far. Their relationship with conventional Gγ subunits and taxonomical distribution has not been yet demonstrated. Results After an extensive similarity search through plant genomes, transcriptomes and proteomes we assembled over 200 non-redundant proteins related to the known Gγ subunits. Structural analysis of these sequences revealed that most of them lack the obligatory C-terminal prenylation motif (CaaX. According to their C-terminal structures we classified the plant Gγ subunits into three distinct types. Type A consists of Gγ subunits with a putative prenylation motif. Type B subunits lack a prenylation motif and do not have any cysteine residues in the C-terminal region, while type C subunits contain an extended C-terminal domain highly enriched with cysteines. Comparative analysis of C-terminal domains of the proteins, intron-exon arrangement of the corresponding genes and phylogenetic studies suggested a common origin of all plant Gγ subunits. Conclusion Phylogenetic analyses suggest that types C and B most probably originated independently from type A ancestors. We speculate on a potential mechanism used by those Gγ subunits lacking isoprenylation motifs to anchor the Gβγ dimer to the plasma membrane and propose a new flexible nomenclature for plant Gγ subunits. Finally, in the light of our new classification, we give a word of caution about the interpretation of Gγ research in Arabidopsis and its generalization to other plant species.

  5. Plant diversity effects on ecosystem evapotranspiration and carbon uptake: a controlled environment (Ecotron) and modeling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milcu, Alexandru; Roy, Jacques

    2016-04-01

    Effects of species and functional diversity of plants on ecosystem evapotranspiration and carbon fluxes have been rarely assessed simultaneously. Here we present the results from an experiment that combined a lysimeter setup in a controlled environment facility (Ecotron) with large ecosystem samples/ monoliths originating from a long-term biodiversity experiment ("The Jena Experiment") and a modelling approach. We aimed at (1) quantifying the impact of plant species richness (4 vs. 16 species) on day- and night-time ecosystem water vapor fluxes and carbon uptake, (2) partitioning ecosystem evapotranspiration into evaporation and plant transpiration using the Shuttleworth and Wallace (SW) energy partitioning model, and (3) identifying the most parsimonious predictors of water vapor vapor and CO2 fluxes using plant functional trait-based metrics such as functional diversity and community weighted means. The SW model indicated that at low plant species richness, a higher proportion of the available energy was diverted to evaporation (a non-productive flux), while at higher species richness the proportion of ecosystem transpiration (a production-related water flux) increased. This led to an increased carbon gain per amount of water vapor loss (i.e. increased water use efficiency). While the LAI controlled the carbon and water fluxes, we also found that the diversity of plant functional traits, and in particular of leaf nitrogen concentration are potential important predictors of ecosystem transpiration and carbon uptake and consequently significantly contributed to increase in water use efficiency in communities with higher plant diversity.

  6. Commercial Plant Production and Consumption Still Follow the Latitudinal Gradient in Species Diversity despite Economic Globalization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Erik J; Helmus, Matthew R; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine; Polasky, Stephen; Lasky, Jesse R; Zanne, Amy E; Pearse, William D; Kraft, Nathan J B; Miteva, Daniela A; Fagan, William F

    2016-01-01

    Increasing trade between countries and gains in income have given consumers around the world access to a richer and more diverse set of commercial plant products (i.e., foods and fibers produced by farmers). According to the economic theory of comparative advantage, countries open to trade will be able to consume more-in terms of volume and diversity-if they concentrate production on commodities that they can most cost-effectively produce, while importing goods that are expensive to produce, relative to other countries. Here, we perform a global analysis of traded commercial plant products and find little evidence that increasing globalization has incentivized agricultural specialization. Instead, a country's plant production and consumption patterns are still largely determined by local evolutionary legacies of plant diversification. Because tropical countries harbor a greater diversity of lineages across the tree of life than temperate countries, tropical countries produce and consume a greater diversity of plant products than do temperate countries. In contrast, the richer and more economically advanced temperate countries have the capacity to produce and consume more plant species than the generally poorer tropical countries, yet this collection of plant species is drawn from fewer branches on the tree of life. Why have countries not increasingly specialized in plant production despite the theoretical financial incentive to do so? Potential explanations include the persistence of domestic agricultural subsidies that distort production decisions, cultural preferences for diverse local food production, and that diverse food production protects rural households in developing countries from food price shocks. Less specialized production patterns will make crop systems more resilient to zonal climatic and social perturbations, but this may come at the expense of global crop production efficiency, an important step in making the transition to a hotter and more

  7. Diverse Roles of ERECTA Family Genes in Plant Development

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Elena D.Shpak

    2013-01-01

    Multiple receptor-like kinases (RLKs) enable intercellular communication that coordinates growth and development of plant tissues. ERECTA family receptors (ERfs) are an ancient family of leucine-rich repeat RLKs that in Arabidopsis consists of three genes: ERECTA, ERL1, and ERL2. ERfs sense secreted cysteine-rich peptides from the EPF/EPFL family and transmit the signal through a MAP kinase cascade. This review discusses the functions of ERfs in stomata development, in regulation of longitudinal growth of aboveground organs, during reproductive development, and in the shoot apical meristem. In addition the role of ERECTA in plant responses to biotic and abiotic factors is examined.

  8. [Agrobacterium rubi strains from blueberry plants are highly diverse].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrahamovich, Eliana; López, Ana C; Alippi, Adriana M

    2014-01-01

    The diversity of a collection of Agrobacterium rubi strains isolated from blueberries from different regions of Argentina was studied by conventional microbiological tests and molecular techniques. Results from biochemical and physiological reactions, as well as from rep-PCR and RFLP analysis of PCR-amplified 23S rDNA showed high phenotypic and genotypic intraspecific variation. Copyright © 2014 Asociación Argentina de Microbiología. Publicado por Elsevier España. All rights reserved.

  9. Effects of plant diversity on microbial nitrogen and phosphorus dynamics in soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prommer, Judith; Braun, Judith; Daly, Amanda; Gorka, Stefan; Hu, Yuntao; Kaiser, Christina; Martin, Victoria; Meyerhofer, Werner; Walker, Tom W. N.; Wanek, Wolfgang; Wasner, Daniel; Wiesenbauer, Julia; Zezula, David; Zheng, Qing; Richter, Andreas

    2017-04-01

    There is a general consensus that plant diversity affects many ecosystem functions. One example of such an effect is the enhanced aboveground and belowground plant biomass production with increasing species richness, with implications for carbon and nutrient distribution in soil. The Jena Experiment (http://www.the-jena-experiment.de/), a grassland biodiversity experiment established in 2002 in Germany, comprises different levels of plant species richness and different numbers of plant functional groups. It provides the opportunity to examine how changes in biodiversity impact on microbially-mediated nutrient cycling processes. We here report on plant diversity and plant functional composition effects on growth and nitrogen and phosphorus transformation rates, including nitrogen use efficiency, of microbial communities. Microbial growth rates and microbial biomass were positively affected by increasing plant species richness. Amino acid and ammonium concentrations in soil were also positively affected by plant species richness, while phosphate concentrations in contrast were negatively affected. The cycling of organic N in soils (estimated as gross protein depolymerization rates) increased about threefold with plant diversity, while gross N and P mineralization were not significantly affected by either species or functional richness. Microbial nitrogen use efficiency did not respond to different levels of plant diversity but was very high (0.96 and 0.98) across all levels of plant species richness, demonstrating a low N availability for microbes. Taken together this indicates that soil microbial communities were able to meet the well-documented increase in plant N content with species richness, and also the higher N demand of the microbial community by increasing the recycling of organic N such as proteins. In fact, the microbial community even overcompensated the increased plant and microbial N demand, as evidenced by increased levels of free amino acids and

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Picard, Christine; Bosco, Marco

    2008-01-01

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

  11. Consistent role of Quaternary climate change in shaping current plant functional diversity patterns across European plant orders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordonez, Alejandro; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2017-02-01

    Current and historical environmental conditions are known to determine jointly contemporary species distributions and richness patterns. However, whether historical dynamics in species distributions and richness translate to functional diversity patterns remains, for the most part, unknown. The geographic patterns of plant functional space size (richness) and packing (dispersion) for six widely distributed orders of European angiosperms were estimated using atlas distribution data and trait information. Then the relative importance of late-Quaternary glacial-interglacial climate change and contemporary environmental factors (climate, productivity, and topography) as determinants of functional diversity of evaluated orders was assesed. Functional diversity patterns of all evaluated orders exhibited prominent glacial-interglacial climate change imprints, complementing the influence of contemporary environmental conditions. The importance of Quaternary glacial-interglacial climate change factors was comparable to that of contemporary environmental factors across evaluated orders. Therefore, high long-term paleoclimate variability has imposed consistent supplementary constraints on functional diversity of multiple plant groups, a legacy that may permeate to ecosystem functioning and resilience. These findings suggest that strong near-future anthropogenic climate change may elicit long-term functional disequilibria in plant functional diversity.

  12. Consistent role of Quaternary climate change in shaping current plant functional diversity patterns across European plant orders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordonez, Alejandro; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2017-02-23

    Current and historical environmental conditions are known to determine jointly contemporary species distributions and richness patterns. However, whether historical dynamics in species distributions and richness translate to functional diversity patterns remains, for the most part, unknown. The geographic patterns of plant functional space size (richness) and packing (dispersion) for six widely distributed orders of European angiosperms were estimated using atlas distribution data and trait information. Then the relative importance of late-Quaternary glacial-interglacial climate change and contemporary environmental factors (climate, productivity, and topography) as determinants of functional diversity of evaluated orders was assesed. Functional diversity patterns of all evaluated orders exhibited prominent glacial-interglacial climate change imprints, complementing the influence of contemporary environmental conditions. The importance of Quaternary glacial-interglacial climate change factors was comparable to that of contemporary environmental factors across evaluated orders. Therefore, high long-term paleoclimate variability has imposed consistent supplementary constraints on functional diversity of multiple plant groups, a legacy that may permeate to ecosystem functioning and resilience. These findings suggest that strong near-future anthropogenic climate change may elicit long-term functional disequilibria in plant functional diversity.

  13. Consistent role of Quaternary climate change in shaping current plant functional diversity patterns across European plant orders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordonez, Alejandro; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2017-01-01

    Current and historical environmental conditions are known to determine jointly contemporary species distributions and richness patterns. However, whether historical dynamics in species distributions and richness translate to functional diversity patterns remains, for the most part, unknown. The geographic patterns of plant functional space size (richness) and packing (dispersion) for six widely distributed orders of European angiosperms were estimated using atlas distribution data and trait information. Then the relative importance of late-Quaternary glacial-interglacial climate change and contemporary environmental factors (climate, productivity, and topography) as determinants of functional diversity of evaluated orders was assesed. Functional diversity patterns of all evaluated orders exhibited prominent glacial-interglacial climate change imprints, complementing the influence of contemporary environmental conditions. The importance of Quaternary glacial-interglacial climate change factors was comparable to that of contemporary environmental factors across evaluated orders. Therefore, high long-term paleoclimate variability has imposed consistent supplementary constraints on functional diversity of multiple plant groups, a legacy that may permeate to ecosystem functioning and resilience. These findings suggest that strong near-future anthropogenic climate change may elicit long-term functional disequilibria in plant functional diversity. PMID:28230069

  14. Assessment of Genetic Diversity in Seed Plants Based on a Uniform π Criterion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bin Ai

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Despite substantial advances in genotyping techniques and massively accumulated data over the past half century, a uniform measurement of neutral genetic diversity derived by different molecular markers across a wide taxonomical range has not yet been formulated. We collected genetic diversity data on seed plants derived by AFLP, allozyme, ISSR, RAPD, SSR and nucleotide sequences, converted expected heterozygosity (He to nucleotide diversity (π, and reassessed the relationship between plant genetic diversity and life history traits or extinction risk. We successfully established a uniform π criterion and developed a comprehensive plant genetic diversity database. The mean population-level and species-level π values across seed plants were 0.00374 (966 taxa, 155 families, 47 orders and 0.00569 (728 taxa, 130 families, 46 orders, respectively. Significant differences were recovered for breeding system (p < 0.001 at the population level and geographic range (p = 0.023 at the species level. Selfing taxa had significantly lower π values than outcrossing and mixed-mating taxa, whereas narrowly distributed taxa had significantly lower π values than widely distributed taxa. Despite significant differences between the two extreme threat categories (critically endangered and least concern, the genetic diversity reduction on the way to extinction was difficult to detect in early stages.

  15. The potential of plant viruses to promote genotypic diversity via genotype x environment interactions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Mölken, Tamara; Stuefer, Josef F.

    2011-01-01

    † Background and Aims Genotype by environment (G × E) interactions are important for the long-term persistence of plant species in heterogeneous environments. It has often been suggested that disease is a key factor for the maintenance of genotypic diversity in plant populations. However, empirical...... evidence for this contention is scarce. Here virus infection is proposed as a possible candidate for maintaining genotypic diversity in their host plants. † Methods The effects of White clover mosaic virus (WClMV) on the performance and development of different Trifolium repens genotypes were analysed...... and the G × E interactions were examined with respect to genotypespecific plant responses to WClMV infection. Thus, the environment is defined as the presence or absence of the virus. † Key Results WClMV had a negative effect on plant performance as shown by a decrease in biomass and number of ramets...

  16. The effects of plant diversity on nitrous oxide emissions in hydroponic microcosms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Hongying; Zhang, Chongbang; Song, Changchun; Chang, Scott X.; Gu, Baojing; Chen, Zhengxin; Peng, Changhui; Chang, Jie; Ge, Ying

    2013-10-01

    Previous studies have shown that plant diversity can improve the wastewater purification efficiency of constructed wetlands (CWs), but its effect on the nitrous oxide (N2O) emission in CWs has been unknown. To investigate the effect of plant diversity on the N2O emission, we established four plant species richness levels (each level containing 1, 2, 3 and 4 species, respectively) by using 96 hydroponic microcosms. Results showed that plant species richness enhanced the N2O emission, ranging from 27.1 to 115.4 μg N2O m-2 d-1, and improved nitrate removal (P 0.05), but improved nitrogen removal (P < 0.001). Hence, our study highlights the importance of both plant species richness and species identity in mediating the N2O emission and nitrogen removal in CWs.

  17. Morphological characterization and assessment of genetic diversity in minicore collection of pigeonpea [Cajanus Cajan (L. Millsp.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muniswamy, S., Lokesha, R. *, Dharmaraj, P.S., Yamanura1 and Diwan, J.R.

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available An investigation was undertaken to ascertain the extent of genetic diversity present among 196 pigeon pea genotypes using D2 statistic. A wider genetic diversity was observed for nine characters as evidenced by formation of 13 clusters. Number of pods per plant contributed most (59.83% towards divergence, followed by plant height ( 21.55 The highest inter cluster distance was observed between the cluster XIII and VII, followed by cluster V and XIII, II and XIII and cluster XII and VII, which indicates that the crosses among the genotypes between these clusters may result in better segregants and high heterotic combinations. Cluster mean analysis indicated that cluster V contains dwarf and early maturing genotypes and cluster XIII possess high yielding entries. Morphological characterization was also carried out for 15 traits can be used in varietal purification and seed production.

  18. Economic valuation of plant diversity storage service provided by Brazilian rupestrian grassland ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Resende, F M; Fernandes, G W; Coelho, M S

    2013-11-01

    The rupestrian grassland ecosystems provide various goods and services to society and support a significant amount of biological diversity. Notably the rich plant diversity has high levels of endemism and a variety of uses among the local communities and general society. Despite the socio-ecological importance of these ecosystems, they are subjected to significant anthropogenic pressures. The goal of this study is to perform economic valuation of the plant diversity storage service provided by rupestrian grassland ecosystems to provide grounds for the development of conservation policies and encourage sustainable practices in these ecosystems. Given the intense human disturbances and unique flora, the Serra do Cipó (southern portion of the Espinhaço Range in southeast Brazil) was selected for the study. We estimate the monetary value related to the plant diversity storage service provided by the study area using the maintenance costs of native plants in the living collections of the botanical garden managed by the Zoobotanical Foundation - Belo Horizonte (located 97 km from Serra do Cipó). The plant diversity storage value provided by Serra do Cipó ecosystems is significant, reaching US$25.26 million year-1. This study contributes to the development of perspectives related to the conservation of rupestrian grassland ecosystems as well as others threatened tropical ecosystems with high biodiversity.

  19. Decoupling factors affecting plant diversity and cover on extensive green roofs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacIvor, J Scott; Margolis, Liat; Puncher, Curtis L; Carver Matthews, Benjamin J

    2013-11-30

    Supplemental irrigation systems are often specified on green roofs to ensure plant cover and growth, both important components of green roof performance and aesthetics. Properties of the growing media environment too can alter the assemblage of plant species able to thrive. In this study we determine how plant cover, above ground biomass and species diversity are influenced by irrigation and growing media. Grass and forb vegetative cover and biomass were significantly greater in organic based growing media but there was no effect of supplemental irrigation, with two warm season grasses dominating in those treatments receiving no supplemental irrigation. On the other hand, plant diversity declined without irrigation in organic media, and having no irrigation in inorganic growing media resulted in almost a complete loss of cover. Sedum biomass was less in inorganic growing media treatments and species dominance shifted when growing media organic content increased. Our results demonstrate that supplemental irrigation is required to maintain plant diversity on an extensive green roof, but not necessarily plant cover or biomass. These results provide evidence that planting extensive green roofs with a mix of plant species can ensure the survival of some species; maintaining cover and biomass when supplemental irrigation is turned off to conserve water, or during extreme drought.

  20. Plant microbial diversity is suggested as the key to future biocontrol and health trends.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg, Gabriele; Köberl, Martina; Rybakova, Daria; Müller, Henry; Grosch, Rita; Smalla, Kornelia

    2017-05-01

    The microbiome of plants plays a crucial role in both plant and ecosystem health. Rapid advances in multi-omics tools are dramatically increasing access to the plant microbiome and consequently to the identification of its links with diseases and to the control of those diseases. Recent insights reveal a close, often symbiotic relationship between microorganisms and plants. Microorganisms can stimulate germination and plant growth, prevent diseases, and promote stress resistance and general fitness. Plants and their associated microorganisms form a holobiont and have to be considered as co-evolved species assemblages consisting of bacterial, archaeal and diverse eukaryotic species. The beneficial interplay of the host and its microbiome is responsible for maintaining the health of the holobiont, while diseases are often correlated with microbial dysbioses. Microbial diversity was identified as a key factor in preventing diseases and can be implemented as a biomarker in plant protection strategies. Targeted and predictive biocontrol approaches are possible by developing microbiome-based solutions. Moreover, combined breeding and biocontrol strategies maintaining diversity and ecosystem health are required. The analysis of plant microbiome data has brought about a paradigm shift in our understanding of its role in health and disease and has substantial consequences for biocontrol and health issues. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Biogeographical diversity of plant associated microbes in arcto-alpine plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kumar, Manoj Gopala Krishnan

    2016-01-01

    Terrestrial plants and microbes have co-evolved since the emergence of the former on Earth. Associations with microorganisms can be either beneficial or detrimental for plants. Microbes can be found in the soil surrounding the plant roots, but also in all plant tissues, including seeds. In arcto-alp

  2. Plant functional diversity increases grassland productivity-related water vapor fluxes: an Ecotron and modeling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milcu, Alexandru; Eugster, Werner; Bachmann, Dörte; Guderle, Marcus; Roscher, Christiane; Gockele, Annette; Landais, Damien; Ravel, Olivier; Gessler, Arthur; Lange, Markus; Ebeling, Anne; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Roy, Jacques; Hildebrandt, Anke; Buchmann, Nina

    2016-08-01

    The impact of species richness and functional diversity of plants on ecosystem water vapor fluxes has been little investigated. To address this knowledge gap, we combined a lysimeter setup in a controlled environment facility (Ecotron) with large ecosystem samples/monoliths originating from a long-term biodiversity experiment (The Jena Experiment) and a modeling approach. Our goals were (1) quantifying the impact of plant species richness (four vs. 16 species) on day- and nighttime ecosystem water vapor fluxes; (2) partitioning ecosystem evapotranspiration into evaporation and plant transpiration using the Shuttleworth and Wallace (SW) energy partitioning model; and (3) identifying the most parsimonious predictors of water vapor fluxes using plant functional-trait-based metrics such as functional diversity and community weighted means. Daytime measured and modeled evapotranspiration were significantly higher in the higher plant diversity treatment, suggesting increased water acquisition. The SW model suggests that, at low plant species richness, a higher proportion of the available energy was diverted to evaporation (a non-productive flux), while, at higher species richness, the proportion of ecosystem transpiration (a productivity-related water flux) increased. While it is well established that LAI controls ecosystem transpiration, here we also identified that the diversity of leaf nitrogen concentration among species in a community is a consistent predictor of ecosystem water vapor fluxes during daytime. The results provide evidence that, at the peak of the growing season, higher leaf area index (LAI) and lower percentage of bare ground at high plant diversity diverts more of the available water to transpiration, a flux closely coupled with photosynthesis and productivity. Higher rates of transpiration presumably contribute to the positive effect of diversity on productivity.

  3. Response of pest control by generalist predators to local-scale plant diversity: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dassou, Anicet Gbèblonoudo; Tixier, Philippe

    2016-02-01

    Disentangling the effects of plant diversity on the control of herbivores is important for understanding agricultural sustainability. Recent studies have investigated the relationships between plant diversity and arthropod communities at the landscape scale, but few have done so at the local scale. We conducted a meta-analysis of 32 papers containing 175 independent measures of the relationship between plant diversity and arthropod communities. We found that generalist predators had a strong positive response to plant diversity, that is, their abundance increased as plant diversity increased. Herbivores, in contrast, had an overall weak and negative response to plant diversity. However, specialist and generalist herbivores differed in their response to plant diversity, that is, the response was negative for specialists and not significant for generalists. While the effects of scale remain unclear, the response to plant diversity tended to increase for specialist herbivores, but decrease for generalist herbivores as the scale increased. There was no clear effect of scale on the response of generalist predators to plant diversity. Our results suggest that the response of herbivores to plant diversity at the local scale is a balance between habitat and trophic effects that vary according to arthropod specialization and habitat type. Synthesis and applications. Positive effects of plant diversity on generalist predators confirm that, at the local scale, plant diversification of agroecosystems is a credible and promising option for increasing pest regulation. Results from our meta-analysis suggest that natural control in plant-diversified systems is more likely to occur for specialist than for generalist herbivores. In terms of pest management, our results indicate that small-scale plant diversification (via the planting of cover crops or intercrops and reduced weed management) is likely to increase the control of specialist herbivores by generalist predators.

  4. Carbon storage potential by four macrophytes as affected by planting diversity in a created wetland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Means, Mary M; Ahn, Changwoo; Korol, Alicia R; Williams, Lisa D

    2016-01-01

    Wetland creation has become a commonplace method for mitigating the loss of natural wetlands. Often mitigation projects fail to restore ecosystem services of the impacted natural wetlands. One of the key ecosystem services of newly created wetlands is carbon accumulation/sequestration, but little is known about how planting diversity (PD) affects the ability of herbaceous wetland plants to store carbon in newly created wetlands. Most mitigation projects involve a planting regime, but PD, which may be critical in establishing biologically diverse and ecologically functioning wetlands, is seldom required. Using a set of 34 mesocosms (∼1 m(2) each), we investigated the effects of planting diversity on carbon storage potential of four native wetland plant species that are commonly planted in created mitigation wetlands in Virginia - Carex vulpinoidea, Eleocharis obtusa, Juncus effusus, and Mimulus ringens. The plants were grown under the four distinctive PD treatments [i.e., monoculture (PD 1) through four different species mixture (PD 4)]. Plant biomass was harvested after two growing seasons and analyzed for tissue carbon content. Competition values (CV) were calculated to understand how the PD treatment affected the competitive ability of plants relative to their biomass production and thus carbon storage potentials. Aboveground biomass ranged from 988 g/m(2) - 1515 g/m(2), being greatest in monocultures, but only when compared to the most diverse mixture (p = 0.021). However, carbon storage potential estimates per mesocosm ranged between 344 g C/m(2) in the most diverse mesocosms (PD 4) to 610 g C/m(2) in monoculture ones with no significant difference (p = 0.089). CV of E. obtusa and C. vulpinoidea showed a declining trend when grown in the most diverse mixtures but J. effusus and M. ringens displayed no difference across the PD gradient (p = 0.910). In monocultures, both M. ringens, and J. effusus appeared to store carbon as biomass more

  5. Geographic patterns of endemic seed plant genera diversity in China

    OpenAIRE

    Shengbin Chen; Zhiyun Ouyang; Yu Fang; Zhenji Li

    2011-01-01

    Endemism describes the phenomenon that the distribution of individual species/taxa is critically restricted to a specific region. Seed plant genera endemic to China (endemic genera) are those with their main geographic distribution range within the borders of China. The geographic patterns of endemic genera can not only guide conservation planning, but these organisms are also important biological resources. We gath-ered data of 173 localities on environmental and spatial factors, and regiona...

  6. Plants and People: Choices and Diversity Through Time

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    This first monograph in the EARTH series The dynamics of non-industrial agriculture: 8,000 years of resilience and innovation, approaches the great variety of agricultural practices in human terms. It focuses on the relationship between plants and people, the complexity of agricultural processes and their organisation within particular communities and societies. Collaborative European research among archaeologists, archaeobotanists, ethnographers, historians and agronomists using a broad anal...

  7. Plants and People: Choices and Diversity Through Time

    OpenAIRE

    2014-01-01

    This first monograph in the EARTH series The dynamics of non-industrial agriculture: 8,000 years of resilience and innovation, approaches the great variety of agricultural practices in human terms. It focuses on the relationship between plants and people, the complexity of agricultural processes and their organisation within particular communities and societies. Collaborative European research among archaeologists, archaeobotanists, ethnographers, historians and agronomists using a broad anal...

  8. Acacia sieberiana Effects on Soil Properties and Plant Diversity in Songa Pastures, Rwanda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. P. Mugunga

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Effects of A. sieberiana trees on soil properties and plant diversity were investigated in Songa pastures, Rwanda. Tree characteristics and crown architecture of A. sieberiana were studied. Soil properties were assessed and plants were identified under and away from tree crowns. Counts of individual plants/species were done only under tree crowns. Nitrogen, P, and K were analysed in the soil, grass, and A. sieberiana leaves. Plant diversity was determined using Simpson's diversity index. Data were subjected to ANOVA. Soil organic carbon (SOC, cation exchange capacity (CEC, Ca2+, N and pH, and plant diversity were higher in soils under tree canopies than in open areas. Tree leaves were significantly richer in N and poorer in P and K as compared to grasses. Tree crowns grew wider and horizontal and developed intertwined secondary branching, reducing light intensity to as low as 38% under tree canopies compared to the open pasture. At 3 trees/ha stocking, A. sieberiana trees shaded 0.18 ha and herbaceous plants and grasses unpalatable to livestock dominated under tree canopies. A tradeoff of A. sieberiana tree value versus the loss of palatable grass due to tree presence needs to be assessed to decide whether the trees should be included in pastures and if yes, the apporpriate stocking identified.

  9. Commercial Plant Production and Consumption Still Follow the Latitudinal Gradient in Species Diversity despite Economic Globalization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Erik J.; Helmus, Matthew R.; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine; Polasky, Stephen; Lasky, Jesse R.; Zanne, Amy E.; Pearse, William D.; Kraft, Nathan J. B.; Miteva, Daniela A.; Fagan, William F.

    2016-01-01

    Increasing trade between countries and gains in income have given consumers around the world access to a richer and more diverse set of commercial plant products (i.e., foods and fibers produced by farmers). According to the economic theory of comparative advantage, countries open to trade will be able to consume more–in terms of volume and diversity–if they concentrate production on commodities that they can most cost-effectively produce, while importing goods that are expensive to produce, relative to other countries. Here, we perform a global analysis of traded commercial plant products and find little evidence that increasing globalization has incentivized agricultural specialization. Instead, a country’s plant production and consumption patterns are still largely determined by local evolutionary legacies of plant diversification. Because tropical countries harbor a greater diversity of lineages across the tree of life than temperate countries, tropical countries produce and consume a greater diversity of plant products than do temperate countries. In contrast, the richer and more economically advanced temperate countries have the capacity to produce and consume more plant species than the generally poorer tropical countries, yet this collection of plant species is drawn from fewer branches on the tree of life. Why have countries not increasingly specialized in plant production despite the theoretical financial incentive to do so? Potential explanations include the persistence of domestic agricultural subsidies that distort production decisions, cultural preferences for diverse local food production, and that diverse food production protects rural households in developing countries from food price shocks. Less specialized production patterns will make crop systems more resilient to zonal climatic and social perturbations, but this may come at the expense of global crop production efficiency, an important step in making the transition to a hotter and more

  10. Effects of Bamboo Fargesia murielae on Plant Diversity in Fir Forest on Mountain Shennongjia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Li Zhaohua; Manfred Denich; Thomas Borsch

    2004-01-01

    Simultaneous flowering caused a gregarious dieback of umbrella bamboo (Fargesia murielae) all over the world in 1993-2000. Mountain Shennongjia in Central China's Hubei Province is the only native home of umbrella bamboo, where it dominates the understorey of the farges fir (Abies fargesii) forest between 2 400 and 3 100 m, covering the ground for more than one century before a periodically flowering death. Data from 20 quadrats along a vegetation sequence revealed that the density, coverage, and height of umbrella bamboo negatively affected the species richness, diversity, and evenness of vascular plants in the forest. Local climax community of fir-bamboo was the poorest in species diversity, while the bamboo-free communities (i.e. shrubs and meadows) were bearing a higher species diversity. The simultaneous dieback of umbrella bamboo is an ecological release, which can periodically promote the plant diversity in the fir forest.

  11. Diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in grassland spontaneously developed on area polluted by a fertilizer plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Renker, C. [Institute of Ecology, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Jena, Dornburger Str. 159, D-07743 Jena (Germany)]. E-mail: crenker@uni-leipzig.de; Blanke, V. [Institute of Ecology, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Jena, Dornburger Str. 159, D-07743 Jena (Germany); Buscot, F. [Institute of Ecology, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Jena, Dornburger Str. 159, D-07743 Jena (Germany)

    2005-05-01

    Mycorrhizal colonization and diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) were analyzed in a calcareous grassland with residual phosphate contamination 10 years after the closure of a pollutant fertilizer plant in Thuringia (Germany). AMF were detected in 21 of 22 plant species analyzed. Mean mycorrhization levels reached up to 74.5% root length colonized. AMF diversity was analyzed based on 104 sequences of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) of the ribosomal DNA. Phylogenetic analyses revealed a total of 6 species all belonging to the genus Glomus. There was no overlap between species detected as active mycorrhizas on roots (2 taxa) or as spores (4 taxa). Compared to the regional context, the diversity of AMF at our field site was reduced, which may reflect a residual disturbance effect. However, none of the detected species was exclusive to the polluted site as they are commonly found in the region. - Almost all plant species were mycorrhizal.

  12. Long-term persistence of a positive plant diversity-productivity relationship in the absence of legumes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ruijven, van J.; Berendse, F.

    2009-01-01

    Most studies investigating the relationship between plant diversity and ecosystem functioning lasted only a few years. These studies generally showed a positive relationship between diversity and productivity that strengthened with time. This pattern suggests the experimental communities have not ye

  13. Leaf and stem economics spectra drive diversity of functional plant traits in a dynamic global vegetation model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sakschewski, B.; Bloh, von W.; Boit, A.; Rammig, A.; Kattge, J.; Poorter, L.; Peñualeas, J.; Thonicke, K.

    2015-01-01

    Functional diversity is critical for ecosystem dynamics, stability and productivity. However, dynamic global vegetation models (DGVMs) which are increasingly used to simulate ecosystem functions under global change, condense functional diversity to plant functional types (PFTs) with constant paramet

  14. Nuclear material safeguards for enrichments plants: Part 4, Gas Centrifuge Enrichment Plant: Diversion scenarios and IAEA safeguards activities: Safeguards training course

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1988-10-01

    This publication is Part 4 of a safeguards training course in Nuclear Material Safeguards for enrichment plants. This part of the course deals with diversion scenarios and safeguards activities at gas centrifuge enrichment plants.

  15. Plant community diversity influences allocation to direct chemical defence in Plantago lanceolata.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Mraja

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Forecasting the consequences of accelerating rates of changes in biodiversity for ecosystem functioning requires a mechanistic understanding of the relationships between the structure of biological communities and variation in plant functional characteristics. So far, experimental data of how plant species diversity influences the investment of individual plants in direct chemical defences against herbivores and pathogens is lacking. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used Plantago lanceolata as a model species in experimental grasslands differing in species richness and composition (Jena Experiment to investigate foliar concentrations of the iridoid glycosides (IG, catalpol and its biosynthetic precursor aucubin. Total IG and aucubin concentrations decreased, while catalpol concentrations increased with increasing plant diversity in terms of species or functional group richness. Negative plant diversity effects on total IG and aucubin concentrations correlated with increasing specific leaf area of P. lanceolata, suggesting that greater allocation to light acquisition reduced the investment into these carbon-based defence components. In contrast, increasing leaf nitrogen concentrations best explained increasing concentrations of the biosynthetically more advanced IG, catalpol. Observed levels of leaf damage explained a significant proportion of variation in total IG and aucubin concentrations, but did not account for variance in catalpol concentrations. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results clearly show that plants growing in communities of varying species richness and composition differ in their defensive chemistry, which may modulate plant susceptibility to enemy attack and consequently their interactions with higher trophic level organisms.

  16. Grazing intensity on the plant diversity of alpine meadow in the eastern Tibetan plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wu Ning

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Because ofthe remoteness and harsh conditions of the high-altitude rangelands on the eastern Tibetan Plateau, the relationship between yak grazing and plant diversity has not been so clear although livestock increase was thought as the main issue leading to the degradation of rangeland. In the debate of rangeland degradation, biodiversity loss has been assumed as one of the indicators in the last two decades. In this paper authors measured the effects of different grazing intensities on the plant diversity and the structure of Kobresia pygmaea community in the case-study area, northwestern Sichuan. The results indicated that plant diversity of alpine meadow has different changing trends respectively with the change of grazing intensity and seasons. In June the highest plant diversity occurred in the intensively grazed (HG plots, but in July and September species biodiversity index of slightly grazed (LG plots is higher than other experimental treatments. In August the intermediate grazed (IG plots has the highest biodiversity index. Moreover, it was found that intensively grazing always leads to the increase of plant density, but meanwhile the decrease of community height, coverage and biomass. Over-grazing can change the community structure and lead to the succession from Kobresia pygmaea dominated community to Poa pratensis dominated. Analyzing results comprehensively, it can be suggested that the relationship between grazing intensity and plant diversity is not linear, i.e. diversity index is not as good as other characteristics of community structure to evaluate rangeland degradation on the high altitude situation. The change of biodiversity is so complicated that it can not be explained with the simple corresponding causality.

  17. Diversity of Endophytic Fungi from Red Ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc.) Plant and Their Inhibitory Effect to Fusarium oxysporum Plant Pathogenic Fungi

    OpenAIRE

    SIHEGIKO KANAYA; LATIFAH KOSIM DARUSMAN; NAMPIAH SUKARNO; UTUT WIDYASTUTI; ROHANI CINTA BADIA GINTING

    2013-01-01

    Indonesia has been known as a country with high medicinal plant diversity. One of the most common medicinal plant from Indonesia is red ginger (Zingiber officinale Rosc.). Nevertheless, limited studies of endophytic fungi associated with these medicinal plants are hitherto available. The objectives of this research were to study the diversity of endophytic fungi on red ginger and to analyze their potential as a source of antifungal agent. All parts of plant organs such as leaf, rhizome, root,...

  18. Using dark diversity and plant characteristics to guide conservation and restoration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moeslund, Jesper Erenskjold; Brunbjerg, Ane Kirstine; Clausen, Kevin

    2017-01-01

    more often than others, although this is important knowledge for restoration and conservation actions. 2. We applied the concept to a massive national (Danish) plant diversity data base, containing 236 923 records from 15 160 surveys involving 564 species. This enabled the first geographically...... comprehensive (43 000 km2) assessment of dark diversity, at a spatial resolution relevant for conservation and restoration planning (78 m2) across multiple terrestrial habitats, thereby maximising the practical applications of this concept. The probability for a given plant species to belong to the dark...

  19. Diverse Functional Roles of Monosaccharide Transporters and their Homologs in Vascular Plants: A Physiological Perspective

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Thomas L. Slewinski

    2011-01-01

    Vascular plants contain two gene families that encode monosaccharide transporter proteins. The classical monosaccharide transporter(-like)gene superfamily is large and functionally diverse, while the recently identified SWEET transporter family is smaller and, thus far, only found to transport glucose. These transporters play essential roles at many levels, ranging from organelles to the whole plant. Many family members are essential for cellular homeostasis and re-productive success. Although most transporters do not directly participate in long-distance transport, their indirect roles greatly impact carbon allocation and transport flux to the heterotrophic tissues of the plant. Functional characterization of some members from both gene families has revealed their diverse roles in carbohydrate partitioning, phloem function,resource allocation, plant defense, and sugar signaling. This review highlights the broad impacts and implications of monosaccharide transport by describing some of the functional roles of the monosaccharide transporter(-like)superfamily and the SWEET transporter family.

  20. Using phylogenetic, functional and trait diversity to understand patterns of plant community productivity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc W Cadotte

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

  1. Species Diversity in Northern California Salt Marshes: Functional Significance of Parasitic Plant Interactions

    OpenAIRE

    Grewell, Brenda J.

    2004-01-01

    I studied how parasitic plant interactions contribute to species coexistence in tidal wetlands of northern California. First, I address the effects of the native parasite Cuscuta salina on species interactions and plant community structure, showed that Cuscuta is restricted to nutrient poor areas with significant canopy gaps and high species diversity. I examined timing, level, and frequency of host infectivity and identified Plantago maritima as the primary host. I experimentally removed Cus...

  2. Species diversity of vascular plants in Si Phang-nga National Park, Phangnga Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leeratiwong, C.

    2005-07-01

    Full Text Available A survey of the vascular plants in Si Phang-nga National Park, Phangnga Province, was conducted from September 2002 to August 2003. Five hundred and forty three species of 287 genera and 111 families were collected. The most diverse family was Rubiaceae, 53 species. Four species of these collected plants are endemic to Thailand, Argostemma lobulatum, Aristolochia helix, Crinum thaianum and Mallotus hymenophyllus and three species, Hedyotis hedyotidea, Lipocarpha microcephala and Pterolobium intergum are newly recorded for southern Thailand.

  3. Plants diversity and its potential in Buton Utara Game Reserve, South-East Sulawesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TAHAN UJI

    2005-07-01

    Full Text Available Study on richness diversity and potential species of plant in two locations in the Buton Utara Game Reserve had been conducted. One hundred and seventy nine species of plant are collected from this area, and 137 species of them are reported as the potential of species. The largest group is timber (76 species and the other is medicinal plants (41 species. Other data can be gathered as follows 23 species of fruits, 22 species of ornamental plants, 12 species of vegetable, 7 species of fibre plants and 5 species of poisonous plants. The results of study indicated that biti/owala (Vitex coffasus, upi (Intsia palembanica, gufi (Intsia bijuga, nato (Palaquium bataanense, kuru (Elmerillia ovalis, keu uti (Drypetes sibuyanensis, rumbai (Pterospermum celebicum, kondongia (Cinnamomum parthenoxylon, and dongi (Dillenia serrata were very important as commercial timbers.

  4. Highly diverse endophytic and soil Fusarium oxysporum populations associated with field-grown tomato plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demers, Jill E; Gugino, Beth K; Jiménez-Gasco, María Del Mar

    2015-01-01

    The diversity and genetic differentiation of populations of Fusarium oxysporum associated with tomato fields, both endophytes obtained from tomato plants and isolates obtained from soil surrounding the sampled plants, were investigated. A total of 609 isolates of F. oxysporum were obtained, 295 isolates from a total of 32 asymptomatic tomato plants in two fields and 314 isolates from eight soil cores sampled from the area surrounding the plants. Included in this total were 112 isolates from the stems of all 32 plants, a niche that has not been previously included in F. oxysporum population genetics studies. Isolates were characterized using the DNA sequence of the translation elongation factor 1α gene. A diverse population of 26 sequence types was found, although two sequence types represented nearly two-thirds of the isolates studied. The sequence types were placed in different phylogenetic clades within F. oxysporum, and endophytic isolates were not monophyletic. Multiple sequence types were found in all plants, with an average of 4.2 per plant. The population compositions differed between the two fields but not between soil samples within each field. A certain degree of differentiation was observed between populations associated with different tomato cultivars, suggesting that the host genotype may affect the composition of plant-associated F. oxysporum populations. No clear patterns of genetic differentiation were observed between endophyte populations and soil populations, suggesting a lack of specialization of endophytic isolates. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  5. Realistic diversity loss and variation in soil depth independently affect community-level plant nitrogen use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Selmants, Paul C; Zavaleta, Erika S; Wolf, Amelia A

    2014-01-01

    Numerous experiments have demonstrated that diverse plant communities use nitrogen (N) more completely and efficiently, with implications for how species conservation efforts might influence N cycling and retention in terrestrial ecosystems. However, most such experiments have randomly manipulated species richness and minimized environmental heterogeneity, two design aspects that may reduce applicability to real ecosystems. Here we present results from an experiment directly comparing how realistic and randomized plant species losses affect plant N use across a gradient of soil depth in a native-dominated serpentine grassland in California. We found that the strength of the species richness effect on plant N use did not increase with soil depth in either the realistic or randomized species loss scenarios, indicating that the increased vertical heterogeneity conferred by deeper soils did not lead to greater complementarity among species in this ecosystem. Realistic species losses significantly reduced plant N uptake and altered N-use efficiency, while randomized species losses had no effect on plant N use. Increasing soil depth positively affected plant N uptake in both loss order scenarios but had a weaker effect on plant N use than did realistic species losses. Our results illustrate that realistic species losses can have functional consequences that differ distinctly from randomized losses, and that species diversity effects can be independent of and outweigh those of environmental heterogeneity on ecosystem functioning. Our findings also support the value of conservation efforts aimed at maintaining biodiversity to help buffer ecosystems against increasing anthropogenic N loading.

  6. Organic, integrated and conventional management in apple orchards: effect on plant species composition, richness and diversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zdeňka Lososová

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The study was conducted to assess the effect of conventional, integrated and organic management on differences in plant species composition, richness and diversity. The plants were studied in triads of orchards situated in three regions of the Czech Republic. Data about species occurrences were collected on 15 permanent plots in the tree rows and 15 plots between tree rows in each of the apple orchards during 2009. A total of 201 vascular plant species (127 native species, 65 archaeophytes, and 9 neophytes were found. Management type and also different regional conditions had a significant effect on plant species composition and on diversity parameters of orchard spontaneous vegetation. Species richness and species pool was significantly higher in the organic orchards than in the differently managed orchards. Management type had significant effect on proportions of archaeophytes, and also neophytes in apple orchards. The results showed that a change from conventional to integrated and organic management in apple orchards lead to higher plant species diversity and to changes in plant species composition.

  7. Analysis of genetic diversity of a native population of Myrcia lundiana Kiaersk. plants using ISSR markers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, M F; Nizio, D A C; Brito, F A; Sampaio, T S; Silva, A V C; Arrigoni-Blank, M F; Carvalho, S V A; Blank, A F

    2016-12-02

    Myrcia lundiana Kiaersk. is a tree of the family Myrtaceae found in tropical and subtropical areas of the southern hemisphere that produces essential oil. The aim of this study was to characterize the genetic diversity of M. lundiana plants from a native population of Parque Nacional de Itabaiana, using inter-simple sequence repeat molecular markers. Thirty-five primers were tested, 20 of which were polymorphic, resulting in 135 polymorphic and informative bands. Results of the cluster analysis, obtained using the unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean, grouped plants into three clusters: Cluster I - MLU001, MLU002, MLU003, MLU004, MLU005, MLU006, MLU018, MLU019, MLU020, MLU021, MLU022; MLU008, MLU011, MLU012, MLU014, MLU015, MLU017, MLU026, and MLU028; Cluster II - MLU007, MLU009, MLU010, MLU013, and MLU016; and Cluster III - MLU023, MLU024, MLU025, and MLU027. Jaccard similarity coefficients for pair-wise comparisons of plants ranged between 0.15 and 0.87. MLU014 and MLU015 presented low genetic diversity, with a similarity index of 0.87. Conversely, MLU007 and MLU019 presented high diversity, with a similarity index of 0.15. According to the structure analysis, three distinct clusters were formed. Genetic diversity of M. lundiana plants was intermediate, and expansion of its genetic diversity is necessary. MLU026 and MLU028 are the most suitable for selection in breeding programs, since they clearly represent all of the diversity present in these plants. Moreover, these results provide important information on the existing genetic variability, highlighting the importance of Parque Nacional de Itabaiana for the conservation of this species.

  8. Trade-offs between savanna woody plant diversity and carbon storage in the Brazilian Cerrado.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellegrini, Adam F A; Socolar, Jacob B; Elsen, Paul R; Giam, Xingli

    2016-10-01

    Incentivizing carbon storage can be a win-win pathway to conserving biodiversity and mitigating climate change. In savannas, however, the situation is more complex. Promoting carbon storage through woody encroachment may reduce plant diversity of savanna endemics, even as the diversity of encroaching forest species increases. This trade-off has important implications for the management of biodiversity and carbon in savanna habitats, but has rarely been evaluated empirically. We quantified the nature of carbon-diversity relationships in the Brazilian Cerrado by analyzing how woody plant species richness changed with carbon storage in 206 sites across the 2.2 million km(2) region at two spatial scales. We show that total woody plant species diversity increases with carbon storage, as expected, but that the richness of endemic savanna woody plant species declines with carbon storage both at the local scale, as woody biomass accumulates within plots, and at the landscape scale, as forest replaces savanna. The sharpest trade-offs between carbon storage and savanna diversity occurred at the early stages of carbon accumulation at the local scale but the final stages of forest encroachment at the landscape scale. Furthermore, the loss of savanna species quickens in the final stages of forest encroachment, and beyond a point, savanna species losses outpace forest species gains with increasing carbon accumulation. Our results suggest that although woody encroachment in savanna ecosystems may provide substantial carbon benefits, it comes at the rapidly accruing cost of woody plant species adapted to the open savanna environment. Moreover, the dependence of carbon-diversity trade-offs on the amount of savanna area remaining requires land managers to carefully consider local conditions. Widespread woody encroachment in both Australian and African savannas and grasslands may present similar threats to biodiversity.

  9. Functional diversity supports the physiological tolerance hypothesis for plant species richness along climatic gradients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spasojevic, Marko J.; Grace, James B.; Harrison, Susan; Damschen, Ellen Ingman

    2013-01-01

    1. The physiological tolerance hypothesis proposes that plant species richness is highest in warm and/or wet climates because a wider range of functional strategies can persist under such conditions. Functional diversity metrics, combined with statistical modeling, offer new ways to test whether diversity-environment relationships are consistent with this hypothesis. 2. In a classic study by R. H. Whittaker (1960), herb species richness declined from mesic (cool, moist, northerly) slopes to xeric (hot, dry, southerly) slopes. Building on this dataset, we measured four plant functional traits (plant height, specific leaf area, leaf water content and foliar C:N) and used them to calculate three functional diversity metrics (functional richness, evenness, and dispersion). We then used a structural equation model to ask if ‘functional diversity’ (modeled as the joint responses of richness, evenness, and dispersion) could explain the observed relationship of topographic climate gradients to species richness. We then repeated our model examining the functional diversity of each of the four traits individually. 3. Consistent with the physiological tolerance hypothesis, we found that functional diversity was higher in more favorable climatic conditions (mesic slopes), and that multivariate functional diversity mediated the relationship of the topographic climate gradient to plant species richness. We found similar patterns for models focusing on individual trait functional diversity of leaf water content and foliar C:N. 4. Synthesis. Our results provide trait-based support for the physiological tolerance hypothesis, suggesting that benign climates support more species because they allow for a wider range of functional strategies.

  10. Transgenic tobacco revealing altered bacterial diversity in the rhizosphere during early plant development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andreote, Fernando D; Mendes, Rodrigo; Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Rossetto, Priscilla B; Labate, Carlos A; Pizzirani-Kleiner, Aline A; van Elsas, Jan Dirck; Azevedo, João L; Araújo, Welington L

    2008-05-01

    The rhizosphere constitutes a complex niche that may be exploited by a wide variety of bacteria. Bacterium-plant interactions in this niche can be influenced by factors such as the expression of heterologous genes in the plant. The objective of this work was to describe the bacterial communities associated with the rhizosphere and rhizoplane regions of tobacco plants, and to compare communities from transgenic tobacco lines (CAB1, CAB2 and TRP) with those found in wild-type (WT) plants. Samples were collected at two stages of plant development, the vegetative and flowering stages (1 and 3 months after germination). The diversity of the culturable microbial community was assessed by isolation and further characterization of isolates by amplified ribosomal RNA gene restriction analysis (ARDRA) and 16S rRNA sequencing. These analyses revealed the presence of fairly common rhizosphere organisms with the main groups Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Actinobacteria and Bacilli. Analysis of the total bacterial communities using PCR-DGGE (denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis) revealed that shifts in bacterial communities occurred during early plant development, but the reestablishment of original community structure was observed over time. The effects were smaller in rhizosphere than in rhizoplane samples, where selection of specific bacterial groups by the different plant lines was demonstrated. Clustering patterns and principal components analysis (PCA) were used to distinguish the plant lines according to the fingerprint of their associated bacterial communities. Bands differentially detected in plant lines were found to be affiliated with the genera Pantoea, Bacillus and Burkholderia in WT, CAB and TRP plants, respectively. The data revealed that, although rhizosphere/rhizoplane microbial communities can be affected by the cultivation of transgenic plants, soil resilience may be able to restore the original bacterial diversity after one cycle of plant

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-09-01

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

  12. Plant trait diversity buffers variability in denitrification potential over changes in season and soil conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bonnie M McGill

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Denitrification is an important ecosystem service that removes nitrogen (N from N-polluted watersheds, buffering soil, stream, and river water quality from excess N by returning N to the atmosphere before it reaches lakes or oceans and leads to eutrophication. The denitrification enzyme activity (DEA assay is widely used for measuring denitrification potential. Because DEA is a function of enzyme levels in soils, most ecologists studying denitrification have assumed that DEA is less sensitive to ambient levels of nitrate (NO(3(- and soil carbon and thus, less variable over time than field measurements. In addition, plant diversity has been shown to have strong effects on microbial communities and belowground processes and could potentially alter the functional capacity of denitrifiers. Here, we examined three questions: (1 Does DEA vary through the growing season? (2 If so, can we predict DEA variability with environmental variables? (3 Does plant functional diversity affect DEA variability? METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The study site is a restored wetland in North Carolina, US with native wetland herbs planted in monocultures or mixes of four or eight species. We found that denitrification potentials for soils collected in July 2006 were significantly greater than for soils collected in May and late August 2006 (p<0.0001. Similarly, microbial biomass standardized DEA rates were significantly greater in July than May and August (p<0.0001. Of the soil variables measured--soil moisture, organic matter, total inorganic nitrogen, and microbial biomass--none consistently explained the pattern observed in DEA through time. There was no significant relationship between DEA and plant species richness or functional diversity. However, the seasonal variance in microbial biomass standardized DEA rates was significantly inversely related to plant species functional diversity (p<0.01. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These findings suggest that

  13. Plant diversity in live fences and pastures, two examples from the Mexican humid tropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-09-01

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

  14. Diversity and Plant Growth Promoting Capacity of Endophytic Fungi Associated with Halophytic Plants from the West Coast of Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khalmuratova, Irina; Kim, Hyun; Nam, Yoon-Jong; Oh, Yoosun; Jeong, Min-Ji; Choi, Hye-Rim; You, Young-Hyun; Choo, Yeon-Sik; Lee, In-Jung; Shin, Jae-Ho; Yoon, Hyeokjun; Kim, Jong-Guk

    2015-12-01

    Five halophytic plant species, Suaeda maritima, Limonium tetragonum, Suaeda australis, Phragmites australis, and Suaeda glauca Bunge, which are native to the Muan salt marsh of South Korea, were examined for fungal endophytes by sequencing the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region containing ITS1, 5.8S rRNA, and ITS2. In total, 160 endophytic fungal strains were isolated and identified from the roots of the 5 plant species. Taxonomically, all 160 strains belonged to the phyla Ascomycota, Basidiomycota, and Zygomycota. The most dominant genus was Fusarium, followed by the genera Penicillium and Alternaria. Subsequently, using 5 statistical methods, the diversity indices of the endophytes were determined at genus level. Among these halophytic plants, P. australis was found to host the greatest diversity of endophytic fungi. Culture filtrates of endophytic fungi were treated to Waito-C rice seedlings for plant growth-promoting effects. The fungal strain Su-3-4-3 isolated from S. glauca Bunge provide the maximum plant length (20.1 cm) in comparison with wild-type Gibberella fujikuroi (19.6 cm). Consequently, chromatographic analysis of the culture filtrate of Su-3-4-3 showed the presence of physiologically active gibberellins, GA1 (0.465 ng/mL), GA3 (1.808 ng/mL) along with other physiologically inactive GA9 (0.054 ng/mL) and GA24 (0.044 ng/mL). The fungal isolate Su-3-4-3 was identified as Talaromyces pinophilus.

  15. Diversity of Riparian Plants among and within Species Shapes River Communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara L Jackrel

    Full Text Available Organismal diversity among and within species may affect ecosystem function with effects transmitting across ecosystem boundaries. Whether recipient communities adjust their composition, in turn, to maximize their function in response to changes in donor composition at these two scales of diversity is unknown. We use small stream communities that rely on riparian subsidies as a model system. We used leaf pack experiments to ask how variation in plants growing beside streams in the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State, USA affects stream communities via leaf subsidies. Leaves from red alder (Alnus rubra, vine maple (Acer cinereus, bigleaf maple (Acer macrophyllum and western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla were assembled in leaf packs to contrast low versus high diversity, and deployed in streams to compare local versus non-local leaf sources at the among and within species scales. Leaves from individuals within species decomposed at varying rates; most notably thin leaves decomposed rapidly. Among deciduous species, vine maple decomposed most rapidly, harbored the least algal abundance, and supported the greatest diversity of aquatic invertebrates, while bigleaf maple was at the opposite extreme for these three metrics. Recipient communities decomposed leaves from local species rapidly: leaves from early successional plants decomposed rapidly in stream reaches surrounded by early successional forest and leaves from later successional plants decomposed rapidly adjacent to later successional forest. The species diversity of leaves inconsistently affected decomposition, algal abundance and invertebrate metrics. Intraspecific diversity of leaf packs also did not affect decomposition or invertebrate diversity. However, locally sourced alder leaves decomposed more rapidly and harbored greater levels of algae than leaves sourced from conspecifics growing in other areas on the Olympic Peninsula, but did not harbor greater aquatic invertebrate diversity. In

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Zhang

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

  17. Effects of plant diversity, functional group composition, and fertilization on soil microbial properties in experimental grassland.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanja Strecker

    Full Text Available Loss of biodiversity and increased nutrient inputs are two of the most crucial anthropogenic factors driving ecosystem change. Although both received considerable attention in previous studies, information on their interactive effects on ecosystem functioning is scarce. In particular, little is known on how soil biota and their functions are affected by combined changes in plant diversity and fertilization.We investigated the effects of plant diversity, functional community composition, and fertilization on the biomass and respiration of soil microbial communities in a long-term biodiversity experiment in semi-natural grassland (Jena Experiment. Plant species richness enhanced microbial basal respiration and microbial biomass, but did not significantly affect microbial specific respiration. In contrast, the presence of legumes and fertilization significantly decreased microbial specific respiration, without altering microbial biomass. The effect of legumes was superimposed by fertilization as indicated by a significant interaction between the presence of legumes and fertilization. Further, changes in microbial stoichiometry (C-to-N ratio and specific respiration suggest the presence of legumes to reduce N limitation of soil microorganisms and to modify microbial C use efficiency.Our study highlights the role of plant species and functional group diversity as well as interactions between plant community composition and fertilizer application for soil microbial functions. Our results suggest soil microbial stoichiometry to be a powerful indicator of microbial functioning under N limited conditions. Although our results support the notion that plant diversity and fertilizer application independently affect microbial functioning, legume effects on microbial N limitation were superimposed by fertilization, indicating significant interactions between the functional composition of plant communities and nutrient inputs for soil processes.

  18. Plant species diversity, plant biomass and responses of the soil community on abandoned land across Europe: idiosyncracy or above-belowground time lags

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hedlund, K.; Santa Regina, I.; Putten, van der W.H.; Leps, J.; Díaz, T.; Korthals, G.W.; Lavorel, S.; Brown, V.K.; Gormsen, D.; Mortimer, S.R.; Rodríguez Barrueco, C.; Roy, J.; Smilauer, P.; Smilauerová, M.; Dijk, van C.

    2003-01-01

    We examined the relationship between plant species diversity, productivity and the development of the soil community during early secondary succession on former arable land across Europe. We tested the hypothesis that increasing the initial plant species diversity enhances the biomass production and

  19. Pollinating flies (Diptera): A major contribution to plant diversity and agricultural production

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diptera are one of the three largest and most diverse animal groups of the world. As an often neglected, but important group of pollinators, they play a significant role in agrobiodiversity and biodiversity of plants everywhere. Flies are present in almost all habitats and biomes and for many food p...

  20. Plant Species Diversity Mediates Ecosystem Stability of Natural Dune Grasslands in Response to Drought

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rooijen, van Nils M.; Keersmaecker, de Wanda; Ozinga, Wim A.; Coppin, Pol; Hennekens, Stephan M.; Schaminée, Joop H.J.; Somers, Ben; Honnay, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    How plant species diversity can mediate the temporal stability of ecosystem functioning during periods of environmental stress is still a pressing question in ecology, certainly in the context of predicted increasing frequencies and intensities of climate extremes, such as drought. The vast major

  1. Plant diversity increases with the strength of negative density dependence at the global scale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph A. LaManna; Scott A. Mangan; Alfonso Alonso; Norman A. Bourg; Warren Y. Brockelman; Sarayudh Bunyavejchewin; Li-Wan Chang; Jyh-Min Chiang; George B. Chuyong; Keith Clay; Richard Condit; Susan Cordell; Stuart J. Davies; Tucker J. Furniss; Christian P. Giardina; I. A. U. Nimal Gunatilleke; C. V. Savitri Gunatilleke; Fangliang He; Robert W. Howe; Stephen P. Hubbell; Chang-Fu Hsieh; Faith M. Inman-Narahari; David Janík; Daniel J. Johnson; David Kenfack; Lisa Korte; Kamil Král; Andrew J. Larson; James A. Lutz; Sean M. McMahon; William J. McShea; Hervé R. Memiaghe; Anuttara Nathalang; Vojtech Novotny; Perry S. Ong; David A. Orwig; Rebecca Ostertag; Geoffrey G. Parker; Richard P. Phillips; Lawren Sack; I-Fang Sun; J. Sebastián Tello; Duncan W. Thomas; Benjamin L. Turner; Dilys M. Vela Díaz; Tomáš Vrška; George D. Weiblen; Amy Wolf; Sandra Yap; Jonathan A. Myers

    2017-01-01

    Theory predicts that higher biodiversity in the tropics is maintained by specialized interactions among plants and their natural enemies that result in conspecific negative density dependence (CNDD). By using more than 3000 species and nearly 2.4 million trees across 24 forest plots worldwide, we show that global patterns in tree species diversity reflect not only...

  2. Diverse functions of KNOX transcription factors in the diploid body plan of plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    KNOX genes were initially found as shoot meristem regulators in angiosperms. Recent studies in diverse plant lineages however, have revealed the divergence of KNOX gene function during the evolution of diploid body plans. Using genomic approaches, class I KNOX transcription factors have been shown t...

  3. Use of topographic variability for assessing plant diversity in agricultural landscapes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hofer, G.; Bunce, R.G.H.; Edwards, P.J.; Szerencsits, E.; Wagner, H.H.; Herzog, F.

    2011-01-01

    The relationship between plant diversity and topographic variability in agricultural landscapes was investigated, with the aim of determining whether sampling landscape units of 1 km(2) (LUs) across a gradient of topographic variability is more efficient than a random design for assessing the range

  4. Irrigation and Maize Cultivation Erode Plant Diversity Within Crops in Mediterranean Dry Cereal Agro-Ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagúndez, Jaime; Olea, Pedro P; Tejedo, Pablo; Mateo-Tomás, Patricia; Gómez, David

    2016-07-01

    The intensification of agriculture has increased production at the cost of environment and biodiversity worldwide. To increase crop yield in dry cereal systems, vast farmland areas of high conservation value are being converted into irrigation, especially in Mediterranean countries. We analyze the effect of irrigation-driven changes on the farm biota by comparing species diversity, community composition, and species traits of arable plants within crop fields from two contrasting farming systems (dry and irrigated) in Spain. We sampled plant species within 80 fields of dry wheat, irrigated wheat, and maize (only cultivated under irrigation). Wheat crops held higher landscape and per field species richness, and beta diversity than maize. Within the same type of crop, irrigated wheat hosted lower plant diversity than dry wheat at both field and landscape scales. Floristic composition differed between crop types, with higher frequencies of perennials, cosmopolitan, exotic, wind-pollinated and C4 species in maize. Our results suggest that irrigation projects, that transform large areas of dry cereal agro-ecosystems into irrigated crop systems dominated by maize, erode plant diversity. An adequate planning on the type and proportion of crops used in the irrigated agro-ecosystems is needed in order to balance agriculture production and biodiversity conservation.

  5. Biomass and diversity of dry alpine plant communities along altitudinal gradients in the Himalayas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Namgail, T.; Rawat, G.S.; Mishra, C.; Wieren, van S.E.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    A non-linear relationship between phytodiversity and altitude has widely been reported, but the relationship between phytomass and altitude remains little understood.We examined the phytomass and diversity of vascular plants along altitudinal gradients on the dry alpine rangelands of Ladakh, western

  6. Plant species diversity affects infiltration capacity in an experimental grassland through changes in soil properties

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fischer, C.; Tischer, J.; Roscher, C.; Eisenhauer, N.; Ravenek, J.; Gleixner, G.; Attinger, S.; Jensen, B.; Kroon, de H.; Mommer, L.; Scheu, S.; Hildebrandt, A.

    2015-01-01

    Background and aims Soil hydraulic properties drive water distribution and availability in soil. There exists limited knowledge of how plant species diversity might influence soil hydraulic properties. Methods We quantified the change in infiltration capacity affected by soil structural variables (s

  7. Comparison of plant diversity in protected and communal lands in the Bushbuckridge lowveld savanna, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Shackleton, CM

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available Patterns of higher plant species richness and beta diversity were assessed using standard Modified-Whittaker plots in relation to land use, slope position and mean annual rainfall across a rainfall gradient in the savanna areas of the Bushbuckridge...

  8. Diverse Lifestyles and Strategies of Plant Pathogenesis Encoded in the Genomes of Eighteen Dothideomycetes Fungi

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ohm, R.A.; Feau, N.; Henrissat, B.; Schoch, C.L.; Horwitz, B.A.; Barry, K.W.; Condon, B.J.; Copeland, A.C.; Dhillon, B.; Glaser, F.; Hesse, C.N.; Kosti, I.; LaButti, K.; Lindquist, E.A.; Lucas, S.; Salamov, A.A.; Bradshaw, R.E.; Ciuffetti, L.; Hamelin, R.C.; Kema, G.H.J.; Lawrence, C.; Scott, J.A.; Spatafora, J.W.; Turgeon, B.G.; Wit, de P.J.G.M.; Zhong, S.; Goodwin, S.B.; Grigoriev, I.V.

    2012-01-01

    The class Dothideomycetes is one of the largest groups of fungi with a high level of ecological diversity including many plant pathogens infecting a broad range of hosts. Here, we compare genome features of 18 members of this class, including 6 necrotrophs, 9 (hemi)biotrophs and 3 saprotrophs, to

  9. Spatial and seasonal diversity of wild food plants in home gardens of Northeast Thailand

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cruz Garcia, G.S.; Struik, P.C.

    2015-01-01

    Wild food plants (WFPs) are major components of tropical home gardens, constituting an important resource for poor farmers. The spatial and seasonal diversity of WFPs was analyzed across multi-species spatial configurations occurring within home gardens in a rice farming village in northeast Thailan

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

  12. Plant and bird diversity in rubber agroforests in the lowlands of Sumatra, Indonesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beukema, Hendrien; Danielsen, Finn; Vincent, Gregoire; Hardiwinoto, Suryo; van Andel, Jelte

    Plant and bird diversity in the Indonesian jungle rubber agroforestry system was compared to that in primary forest and rubber plantations by integrating new and existing data from a lowland rain forest area in Sumatra. Jungle rubber gardens are low-input rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) agroforests that

  13. Uses and conservation of plant diversity in Ben En National Park, Vietnam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoang, Van Sam

    2009-01-01

    Ben En National Park is one of the 30 National Parks in Vietnam. In this study its botanical wealth has been comprehensively inventoried as well as the very important roles that plants play in the daily life and economy of the people inhabiting the Park. Floristic diversity - In our survey 1389 vasc

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Irby, Bobby N., Comp.; And Others

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

  15. Plant and bird diversity in rubber agroforests in the lowlands of Sumatra, Indonesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beukema, Hendrien; Danielsen, Finn; Vincent, Gregoire; Hardiwinoto, Suryo; van Andel, Jelte

    2007-01-01

    Plant and bird diversity in the Indonesian jungle rubber agroforestry system was compared to that in primary forest and rubber plantations by integrating new and existing data from a lowland rain forest area in Sumatra. Jungle rubber gardens are low-input rubber (Hevea brasiliensis) agroforests that

  16. Irrigation and Maize Cultivation Erode Plant Diversity Within Crops in Mediterranean Dry Cereal Agro-Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagúndez, Jaime; Olea, Pedro P.; Tejedo, Pablo; Mateo-Tomás, Patricia; Gómez, David

    2016-07-01

    The intensification of agriculture has increased production at the cost of environment and biodiversity worldwide. To increase crop yield in dry cereal systems, vast farmland areas of high conservation value are being converted into irrigation, especially in Mediterranean countries. We analyze the effect of irrigation-driven changes on the farm biota by comparing species diversity, community composition, and species traits of arable plants within crop fields from two contrasting farming systems (dry and irrigated) in Spain. We sampled plant species within 80 fields of dry wheat, irrigated wheat, and maize (only cultivated under irrigation). Wheat crops held higher landscape and per field species richness, and beta diversity than maize. Within the same type of crop, irrigated wheat hosted lower plant diversity than dry wheat at both field and landscape scales. Floristic composition differed between crop types, with higher frequencies of perennials, cosmopolitan, exotic, wind-pollinated and C4 species in maize. Our results suggest that irrigation projects, that transform large areas of dry cereal agro-ecosystems into irrigated crop systems dominated by maize, erode plant diversity. An adequate planning on the type and proportion of crops used in the irrigated agro-ecosystems is needed in order to balance agriculture production and biodiversity conservation.

  17. Effects of plant species identity, diversity and soil fertility on biodegradation of phenanthrene in soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oyelami, A.O.; Okere, U.V.; Orwin, K.; Deyn, de G.B.; Jones, K.C.; Semple, K.T.

    2013-01-01

    The work presented in this paper investigated the effects of plant species composition, species diversity and soil fertility on biodegradation of 14C-phenanthrene in soil. The two soils used were of contrasting fertility, taken from long term unfertilised and fertilised grassland, showing

  18. Evaluating Plant Species Diversity and Physiographical Factors in Natural Broad Leaf Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seyed A. Hashemi

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: Species diversity is one of the most important specifications of biological societies. Diversity of organisms, measurement of variety and examination of those hypotheses that are about reasons of diversity are such as affairs that have been desired by the ecologists for a long time. Approach: In this research, diversity of plant species in forest region, numbers of 60 sample plots in 256.00 m-2 had been considered in random-systematic inventory was considered. In each sample plot, four micro-plots in 2.25 m-2 in order to study on herbal cover, were executed that totally 240 micro-plots were considered. At each plot six diversity indices in relation to physiographic factors (slope, geographical aspect and altitude from the sea level were studied. Results: The results indicated that species diversity is more in the northern aspect and also species diversity in slops less than 30% has the most amounts. Factor of altitude from the sea level did not have meaningful relation with species diversity. Conclusion: Through study on correlation of the numbers of species in sample plots with indices and also process and role of indices in different processors of analysis, Simpson’s reciprocal index was suggested as suitable index in this type of studies.

  19. Forest structure and plant diversity in maritime pine (Pinus pinaster Ait.) stands in central Spain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Osorio, L. F.; Bravo, F.; Zaldivar, P.; Pando, V.

    2009-07-01

    The relationship between forest structure and plant diversity in Mediterranean Maritime pine stands (Pinus pinaster Ait.) in the Iberian Range (Spain) was studied. Forty eight stands were sampled. In each, a circular plot (15 m radius) and a transect (25*1 m{sup 2}) were established to estimate stand variables and record presence and abundance of vascular species respectively. Canonical correlation analysis (CCA), simple correlations and multiple stepwise linear regressions were used to explore the relationship between plant diversity and forest structure. Correlation between diversity measurements and stand variables is very weak, but significant correlations were found when evaluating each set of variables separately. Presence and cover of some species (for instance, Veronica arvensis L. or Micropyrum tenellum (L.) Link) is correlated with stand variables; however, determination coefficients found in step-by-step regression are not significant. (Author) 34 refs.

  20. Relationships between plant diversity and the abundance and α-diversity of predatory ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) in a mature Asian temperate forest ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  1. Relationships between plant diversity and the abundance and α-diversity of predatory ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae in a mature Asian temperate forest ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Zou

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

  2. Historical agriculture alters the effects of fire on understory plant beta diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattingly, W Brett; Orrock, John L; Collins, Cathy D; Brudvig, Lars A; Damschen, Ellen I; Veldman, Joseph W; Walker, Joan L

    2015-02-01

    Land-use legacies are known to shape the diversity and distribution of plant communities, but we lack an understanding of whether historical land use influences community responses to contemporary disturbances. Because human-modified landscapes often bear a history of multiple land-use activities, this contingency can challenge our understanding of land-use impacts on plant diversity. We address this contingency by evaluating how beta diversity (the spatial variability of species composition), an important component of regional biodiversity, is shaped by interactions between historical agriculture and prescribed fire, two prominent disturbances that are often coincident in terrestrial ecosystems. At three study locations spanning 450 km in the southeastern United States, we surveyed longleaf pine woodland understory plant communities across 232 remnant and post-agricultural sites with differing prescribed fire regimes. Our results demonstrate that agricultural legacies are a strong predictor of beta diversity, but the direction of this land-use effect differed among the three study locations. Further, although beta diversity increased with prescribed fire frequency at each study location, this effect was influenced by agricultural land-use history, such that positive fire effects were only documented among sites that lacked a history of agriculture at two of our three study locations. Our study not only highlights the role of historical agriculture in shaping beta diversity in a fire-maintained ecosystem but also illustrates how this effect can be contingent upon fire regime and geographic location. We suggest that interactions among historical and contemporary land-use activities may help to explain dissimilarities in plant communities among sites in human-dominated landscapes.

  3. Resource heterogeneity, soil fertility, and species diversity: effects of clonal species on plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eilts, J Alexander; Mittelbach, Gary G; Reynolds, Heather L; Gross, Katherine L

    2011-05-01

    Spatial heterogeneity in soil resources is widely thought to promote plant species coexistence, and this mechanism figures prominently in resource-ratio models of competition. However, most experimental studies have found that nutrient enhancements depress diversity regardless of whether nutrients are uniformly or heterogeneously applied. This mismatch between theory and empirical pattern is potentially due to an interaction between plant size and the scale of resource heterogeneity. Clonal plants that spread vegetatively via rhizomes or stolons can grow large and may integrate across resource patches, thus reducing the positive effect of small-scale resource heterogeneity on plant species richness. Many rhizomatous clonal species respond strongly to increased soil fertility, and they have been hypothesized to drive the descending arm of the hump-shaped productivity-diversity relationship in grasslands. We tested whether clonals reduce species richness in a grassland community by manipulating nutrient heterogeneity, soil fertility, and the presence of rhizomatous clonal species in a 6-year field experiment. We found strong and consistent negative effects of clonals on species richness. These effects were greatest at high fertility and when soil resources were applied at a scale at which rhizomatous clonals could integrate across resource patches. Thus, we find support for the hypothesis that plant size and resource heterogeneity interact to determine species diversity.

  4. Paramagnetic Cellulose DNA Isolation Improves DNA Yield and Quality Among Diverse Plant Taxa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jackson R. Moeller

    2014-10-01

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

  5. Plant diversity in a changing world: Status, trends, and conservation needs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard T. Corlett

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The conservation of plants has not generated the sense of urgency—or the funding—that drives the conservation of animals, although plants are far more important for us. There are an estimated 500,000 species of land plants (angiosperms, gymnosperms, ferns, lycophytes, and bryophytes, with diversity strongly concentrated in the humid tropics. Many species are still unknown to science. Perhaps a third of all land plants are at risk of extinction, including many that are undescribed, or are described but otherwise data deficient. There have been few known global extinctions so far, but many additional species have not been recorded recently and may be extinct. Although only a minority of plant species have a specific human use, many more play important roles in natural ecosystems and the services they provide, and rare species are more likely to have unusual traits that could be useful in the future. The major threats to plant diversity include habitat loss, fragmentation, and degradation, overexploitation, invasive species, pollution, and anthropogenic climate change. Conservation of plant diversity is a massive task if viewed globally, but the combination of a well-designed and well-managed protected area system and ex situ gap-filling and back-up should work anywhere. The most urgent needs are for the completion of the global botanical inventory and an assessment of the conservation status of the 94% of plant species not yet evaluated, so that both in and ex situ conservation can be targeted efficiently. Globally, the biggest conservation gap is in the hyperdiverse lowland tropics and this is where attention needs to be focused.

  6. Can phylogeny predict chemical diversity and potential medicinal activity of plants? A case study of Amaryllidaceae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rønsted, Nina; Symonds, Matthew RE; Birkholm, Trine;

    2012-01-01

    a predictive approach enabling more efficient selection of plants for the development of traditional medicine and lead discovery. However, this relationship has rarely been rigorously tested and the potential predictive power is consequently unknown. Results: We produced a phylogenetic hypothesis...... for the medicinally important plant subfamily Amaryllidoideae (Amaryllidaceae) based on parsimony and Bayesian analysis of nuclear, plastid, and mitochondrial DNA sequences of over 100 species. We tested if alkaloid diversity and activity in bioassays related to the central nervous system are significantly correlated......Background: During evolution, plants and other organisms have developed a diversity of chemical defences, leading to the evolution of various groups of specialized metabolites selected for their endogenous biological function. A correlation between phylogeny and biosynthetic pathways could offer...

  7. Loss of functional diversity and network modularity in introduced plant-fungal symbioses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickie, Ian A; Cooper, Jerry A; Bufford, Jennifer L; Hulme, Philip E; Bates, Scott T

    2016-12-30

    The introduction of alien plants into a new range can result in the loss of co-evolved symbiotic organisms, such as mycorrhizal fungi, that are essential for normal plant physiological functions. Prior studies of mycorrhizal associations in alien plants have tended to focus on individual plant species on a case-by-case basis. This approach limits broad scale understanding of functional shifts and changes in interaction network structure that may occur following introduction. Here we use two extensive datasets of plant-fungal interactions derived from fungal sporocarp observations and recorded plant hosts in two island archipelago nations: New Zealand (NZ) and the United Kingdom (UK). We found that the NZ dataset shows a lower functional diversity of fungal hyphal foraging strategies in mycorrhiza of alien as compared with native trees. Across species this resulted in fungal foraging strategies associated with alien trees being much more variable in functional composition compared with native trees, which had a strikingly similar functional composition. The UK data showed no functional difference in fungal associates of alien and native plant genera. Notwithstanding this, both the NZ and UK data showed a substantial difference in interaction network structure of alien trees compared with native trees. In both cases, fungal associates of native trees showed strong modularity, while fungal associates of alien trees generally integrated into a single large module. The results suggest a lower functional diversity (in one dataset) and a simplification of network structure (in both) as a result of introduction, potentially driven by either limited symbiont co-introductions or disruption of habitat as a driver of specificity due to nursery conditions, planting, or plant edaphic-niche expansion. Recognizing these shifts in function and network structure has important implications for plant invasions and facilitation of secondary invasions via shared mutualist populations.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-11-07

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jagadeeswaran Guru

    2008-04-01

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

  10. Dry coniferous forest restoration and understory plant diversity: The importance of community heterogeneity and the scale of observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erich Kyle Dodson; David W. Peterson

    2010-01-01

    Maintaining understory plant species diversity is an important management goal as forest restoration and fuel reduction treatments are applied extensively to dry coniferous forests of western North America. However, understory diversity is a function of both local species richness (number of species in a sample unit) and community heterogeneity (beta diversity) at...

  11. The Genetic Diversity of Endophytic and Phyllosphere Bacteria from Several Indonesian Herbal Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Devi Rachelia

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Herbal plants have been believed by Indonesians to be an alternative medicine to treat illnesses. The bioactivecompounds in the plant can be derived from secondary metabolites or from endophytic and phyllosphere bacteria whichcoexist within medicinal plants. A total of 18 endophytic bacteria and 32 phyllosphere bacteria were isolated from theherbal plants of Citrus sp., Pluchea indica, Curcuma longa, Nothopanax scuttelarium, Piper crocatum, andAndrographis paniculata. About 72% of endophytic bacteria isolates have proteolytic activity and about 11% havelipolytic activity. On the other hand, about 59% of phyllosphere bacteria isolates have proteolytic activity and about19% have lipolytic activity. Phylogenetic diversity analysis was conducted by using the amplified ribosomal DNArestriction analysis (ARDRA method and the sequence of 16S rDNA was digested with endonuclease restrictionenzymes: MspI, RsaI, and Sau961. The diversity of endophytic and phyllosphere bacterium from the samples of herbalplants was high. Bacteria isolated from the same herbal plant does not always have a close genetic relationship exceptfor the bacteria isolated from the P. indica plant which showed a close genetic relationship with each other.

  12. Vascular plant diversity on the roof of the world: Spatial patterns and environmental determinants

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Ling-Feng MAO; Sheng-Bin CHEN; Jin-Long ZHANG; Yan-Hui HOU; Guang-Sheng ZHOU; Xin-Shi ZHANG

    2013-01-01

    The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP),known as "the Roof of the World",is one of the most unique and vulnerable biodiversity regions on Earth.However,the spatial patterns and determinants of vascular plant diversity on the QTP are still poorly documented,despite a number of publications focusing on its flora.Using extensively compiled data gathered from local flora and specimen records,we evaluated the relative importance of water,energy,and habitat heterogeneity-related variables in shaping the distribution of vascular plant diversity (species,genus,family,herb,woody plants).We found that higher richness always occurred in the south and east of the QTP,especially along the Himalayas,and that habitat heterogeneity,water,and energy variables are important determinants of vascular plant richness patterns on the QTP.The explanatory power of most single predictors was obviously different across life forms,with woody plant richness generally more sensitive to most environmental factors than herb richness.In addition,the explanatory power of habitat heterogeneity models,combined water and energy models,and environmental models increased as the taxonomic level increased from species to family.The results highlight that correlations between plant richness and environmental variables vary with life form and taxonomic scale,and suggest that the explanatory power of variables will change in different spatial scales due to the proportion of life forms and the asymmetric effects of these drivers on life form richness.

  13. Functional Diversity of Boreal Bog Plant Species Decreases Seasonal Variation of Ecosystem Carbon Sink Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korrensalo, A.

    2015-12-01

    Species diversity has been found to decrease the temporal variance of productivity of a plant community, and diversity in species responses to environmental factors seems to make a plant community more stable in changing conditions. Boreal bogs are nutrient poor peatland ecosystems where the number of plant species is low but the species differ greatly in their growth form. In here we aim to assess the role of the variation in photosynthesis between species for the temporal variation in ecosystem carbon sink function. To quantify the photosynthetic properties and their seasonal variation for different bog plant species we measured photosynthetic parameters and stress-inducing chlorophyll fluorescence of vascular plant and Sphagnum moss species in a boreal bog over a growing season. We estimated monthly gross photosynthesis (PG) of the whole study site based on species level light response curves and leaf area development. The estimated PG was further compared with a gross primary production (GPP) estimate measured by eddy covariance (EC) technique. The sum of upscaled PG estimates agreed well with the GPP estimate measured by the EC technique. The contributions of the species and species groups to the ecosystem level PG changed over the growing season. The sharp mid-summer peak in sedge PG was balanced by more stable PG of evergreen shrubs and Sphagna. Species abundance rather than differences in photosynthetic properties between species and growth forms determined the most productive plants on the ecosystem scale. Sphagna had lower photosynthesis and clorophyll fluorescence than vascular plants but were more productive on the ecosystem scale throughout the growing season due to their high areal coverage. These results show that the diversity of growth forms stabilizes the seasonal variation of the ecosystem level PG in an ombrotrophic bog ecosystem. This may increase the resilience of the ecosystem to changing environmental conditions.

  14. Diversity of Medicinal Plants among Different Forest-use Types of the Pakistani Himalaya.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adnan, Muhammad; Hölscher, Dirk

    2012-12-01

    Diversity of Medicinal Plants among Different Forest-use Types of the Pakistani Himalaya Medicinal plants collected in Himalayan forests play a vital role in the livelihoods of regional rural societies and are also increasingly recognized at the international level. However, these forests are being heavily transformed by logging. Here we ask how forest transformation influences the diversity and composition of medicinal plants in northwestern Pakistan, where we studied old-growth forests, forests degraded by logging, and regrowth forests. First, an approximate map indicating these forest types was established and then 15 study plots per forest type were randomly selected. We found a total of 59 medicinal plant species consisting of herbs and ferns, most of which occurred in the old-growth forest. Species number was lowest in forest degraded by logging and intermediate in regrowth forest. The most valuable economic species, including six Himalayan endemics, occurred almost exclusively in old-growth forest. Species composition and abundance of forest degraded by logging differed markedly from that of old-growth forest, while regrowth forest was more similar to old-growth forest. The density of medicinal plants positively correlated with tree canopy cover in old-growth forest and negatively in degraded forest, which indicates that species adapted to open conditions dominate in logged forest. Thus, old-growth forests are important as refuge for vulnerable endemics. Forest degraded by logging has the lowest diversity of relatively common medicinal plants. Forest regrowth may foster the reappearance of certain medicinal species valuable to local livelihoods and as such promote acceptance of forest expansion and medicinal plants conservation in the region. ELECTRONIC SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIAL: The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12231-012-9213-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

  15. Effects of Drought on Plant Species Diversity and Productivity in the Oak Forests of Western Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hassan Pourbabaei

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available A severe drought in 2008 extensively damaged a variety of economic, social, agricultural and natural resources in Iran. This study investigated the effects of the 2008 drought on plant species composition, diversity and productivity in Western Iran. To this end, plant species diversity in the drought year (2008 was compared to pre-drought (2007 and post-drought (2009 diversity. The Shannon-Wiener diversity index and Margalef richness index had significant differences between years, decreasing significantly during drought and significantly increasing post-drought. In contrast, the Smith-Wilson evenness index did not significantly differ between years. Plant dry weight was significantly reduced by drought and increased significantly post-drought. The percent cover of sixteen species was significantly reduced in the drought year. Furthermore, nine species disappeared during drought, but reappeared after precipitation. The most sensitive species to drought were Psathyrostachys fragili, Carex sp., Falcaria falcarioide, Festuca ovina and Scariola orientalis. Five species (Cardaria draba, Echium amoenum, Polygonatum orientale, Medicago noeana and Cirsium vulgare not present before and during drought appeared the year after drought ended. Some of the effects of drought may be reduced by improved land management planning and water conservation to better provide for the water needs of Iran and other drought-prone countries.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-07-01

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

  17. Shifting grassland plant community structure drives positive interactive effects of warming and diversity on aboveground net primary productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cowles, Jane M; Wragg, Peter D; Wright, Alexandra J; Powers, Jennifer S; Tilman, David

    2016-02-01

    Ecosystems worldwide are increasingly impacted by multiple drivers of environmental change, including climate warming and loss of biodiversity. We show, using a long-term factorial experiment, that plant diversity loss alters the effects of warming on productivity. Aboveground primary productivity was increased by both high plant diversity and warming, and, in concert, warming (≈1.5 °C average above and belowground warming over the growing season) and diversity caused a greater than additive increase in aboveground productivity. The aboveground warming effects increased over time, particularly at higher levels of diversity, perhaps because of warming-induced increases in legume and C4 bunch grass abundances, and facilitative feedbacks of these species on productivity. Moreover, higher plant diversity was associated with the amelioration of warming-induced environmental conditions. This led to cooler temperatures, decreased vapor pressure deficit, and increased surface soil moisture in higher diversity communities. Root biomass (0-30 cm) was likewise consistently greater at higher plant diversity and was greater with warming in monocultures and at intermediate diversity, but at high diversity warming had no detectable effect. This may be because warming increased the abundance of legumes, which have lower root : shoot ratios than the other types of plants. In addition, legumes increase soil nitrogen (N) supply, which could make N less limiting to other species and potentially decrease their investment in roots. The negative warming × diversity interaction on root mass led to an overall negative interactive effect of these two global change factors on the sum of above and belowground biomass, and thus likely on total plant carbon stores. In total, plant diversity increased the effect of warming on aboveground net productivity and moderated the effect on root mass. These divergent effects suggest that warming and changes in plant diversity are likely to have both

  18. Relative role of contemporary environment versus history in shaping diversity patterns of China's woody plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Zhiheng; Fang, Jingyun; Tang, Zhiyao

    2012-01-01

    What determines large-scale patterns of species diversity is a central and controversial topic in biogeography and ecology. In this study, we compared the effects of contemporary environment and historical contingencies on species richness patterns of woody plants in China, using fine-resolution ......-plant species richness across China, while historical contingencies generate regional deviations from this trend. Our findings imply that both species diversity and regional evolutionary and ecological histories should be taken into account for future nature conservation.......What determines large-scale patterns of species diversity is a central and controversial topic in biogeography and ecology. In this study, we compared the effects of contemporary environment and historical contingencies on species richness patterns of woody plants in China, using fine...... regions combined. This suggests different richness-environment relationships among regions. These results indicate important historical signals in the species richness patterns of woody plants across China. The signals are especially pronounced in the eastern Himalayas, the Mongolian Plateau...

  19. Comparative Analysis of Plant Diversity of Pinus tabulaeformis Forests in Ten Regions of Beijing Mountainous Areas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Li Liping; Xing Shaohua; Zhao Bo; Wang Qingchun; Cui Guofa

    2006-01-01

    Based on investigations during 1998-2003,shrubs and herbs,as well as indicators of similarity and diversity in Pinus tabulaeformis forests of ten regions around Beijing were compared and analyzed,and protection measures were suggested.Generally,the shrubs and herbs in P.tabulaeformis forests of Shidu,Mutianyu,and Yunfengshan are rich in species diversity and have great similarities.The percentages of common species in each of these three paired regions are above 50%,while many peculiar plant species that could not be found in the other nine regions exist in Labagoumen.As for plant diversity indices,plants in the P.tabulaeformis forests of Baihuashan,Shidu,and Labagoumen occur more frequently than in other regions,while the number of plants in Tanjiesi and Miaofengshan are far less.Some endangered orchid species were found distributed in P.tabulaeformis forests with a clumped spatial pattern but rarely appeared in other forest types,indicating that P.tabulaeformis forests are ideal habitats for orchid species.

  20. Progress Towards an Interdisciplinary Science of Plant Phenology: Building Predictions Across Space, Time and Species Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; Cook, Benjamin I.; Davies, T. Jonathan

    2013-01-01

    Climate change has brought renewed interest in the study of plant phenology - the timing of life history events. Data on shifting phenologies with warming have accumulated rapidly, yet research has been comparatively slow to explain the diversity of phenological responses observed across latitudes, growing seasons and species. Here, we outline recent efforts to synthesize perspectives on plant phenology across the fields of ecology, climate science and evolution. We highlight three major axes that vary among these disciplines: relative focus on abiotic versus biotic drivers of phenology, on plastic versus genetic drivers of intraspecific variation, and on cross-species versus autecological approaches. Recent interdisciplinary efforts, building on data covering diverse species and climate space, have found a greater role of temperature in controlling phenology at higher latitudes and for early-flowering species in temperate systems. These efforts have also made progress in understanding the tremendous diversity of responses across species by incorporating evolutionary relatedness, and linking phenological flexibility to invasions and plant performance. Future research with a focus on data collection in areas outside the temperate mid-latitudes and across species' ranges, alongside better integration of how risk and investment shape plant phenology, offers promise for further progress.

  1. Plant diversity reduces the effect of multiple heavy metal pollution on soil enzyme activities and microbial community structure

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yang GAO; Chiyuan MIAO; Jun XIA; Liang MAO; Yafeng WANG; Pei ZHOU

    2012-01-01

    It is unclear whether certain plant species and plant diversity could reduce the impacts of multiple heavy metal pollution on soil microbial structure and soil enzyme activities. Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) was used to analyze the genetic diversity and microbial similarity in planted and unplanted soil under combined cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb) pollution. A metal hyper- accumulator, Brassica juncea, and a common plant, Festuca arundinacea Schreb, were used in this research. The results showed that microorganism quantity in planted soil significantly increased, compared with that in unplanted soil with Cd and Pb pollution. The order of microbial community sensitivity in response to Cd and Pb stress was as follows: actinomycetes 〉 bacteria 〉 fungi. Respiration, phosphatase, urease and dehydrogenase activity were significantly inhibited due to Cd and Pb stress. Compared with unplanted soil, planted soils have frequently been reported to have higher rates of microbial activity due to the presence of additional surfaces for microbial colonization and organic compounds released by the plant roots. Two coexisting plants could increase microbe population and the activity of phosphatases, dehydrogenases and, in particular, ureases. Soil enzyme activity was higher in B. juncea phytoremediated soil than in F. arundinacea planted soil in this study. Heavy metal pollution decreased the richness of the soil microbial community, but plant diversity increased DNA sequence diversity and maintained DNA sequence diversity at highlevels. The genetic polymorphism under heavy metal stress was higher in B. juncea phytoremediated soil than in F. arundinacea planted soil.

  2. Biogeographical Interpretation of Elevational Patterns of Genus Diversity of Seed Plants in Nepal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Miao; Feng, Jianmeng

    2015-01-01

    This study tests if the biogeographical affinities of genera are relevant for explaining elevational plant diversity patterns in Nepal. We used simultaneous autoregressive (SAR) models to investigate the explanatory power of several predictors in explaining the diversity-elevation relationships shown in genera with different biogeographical affinities. Delta akaike information criterion (ΔAIC) was used for multi-model inferences and selections. Our results showed that both the total and tropical genus diversity peaked below the mid-point of the elevational gradient, whereas that of temperate genera had a nearly symmetrical, unimodal relationship with elevation. The proportion of temperate genera increased markedly with elevation, while that of tropical genera declined. Compared to tropical genera, temperate genera had wider elevational ranges and were observed at higher elevations. Water-related variables, rather than mid-domain effects (MDE), were the most significant predictors of elevational patterns of tropical genus diversity. The temperate genus diversity was influenced by energy availability, but only in quadratic terms of the models. Though climatic factors and mid-domain effects jointly explained most of the variation in the diversity of temperate genera with elevation, the former played stronger roles. Total genus diversity was most strongly influenced by climate and the floristic overlap of tropical and temperate floras, while the influences of mid-domain effects were relatively weak. The influences of water-related and energy-related variables may vary with biogeographical affinities. The elevational patterns may be most closely related to climatic factors, while MDE may somewhat modify the patterns. Caution is needed when investigating the causal factors underlying diversity patterns for large taxonomic groups composed of taxa of different biogeographical affinities. Right-skewed diversity-elevation patterns may be produced by the differential

  3. Biogeographical Interpretation of Elevational Patterns of Genus Diversity of Seed Plants in Nepal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Miao; Feng, Jianmeng

    2015-01-01

    This study tests if the biogeographical affinities of genera are relevant for explaining elevational plant diversity patterns in Nepal. We used simultaneous autoregressive (SAR) models to investigate the explanatory power of several predictors in explaining the diversity-elevation relationships shown in genera with different biogeographical affinities. Delta akaike information criterion (ΔAIC) was used for multi-model inferences and selections. Our results showed that both the total and tropical genus diversity peaked below the mid-point of the elevational gradient, whereas that of temperate genera had a nearly symmetrical, unimodal relationship with elevation. The proportion of temperate genera increased markedly with elevation, while that of tropical genera declined. Compared to tropical genera, temperate genera had wider elevational ranges and were observed at higher elevations. Water-related variables, rather than mid-domain effects (MDE), were the most significant predictors of elevational patterns of tropical genus diversity. The temperate genus diversity was influenced by energy availability, but only in quadratic terms of the models. Though climatic factors and mid-domain effects jointly explained most of the variation in the diversity of temperate genera with elevation, the former played stronger roles. Total genus diversity was most strongly influenced by climate and the floristic overlap of tropical and temperate floras, while the influences of mid-domain effects were relatively weak. The influences of water-related and energy-related variables may vary with biogeographical affinities. The elevational patterns may be most closely related to climatic factors, while MDE may somewhat modify the patterns. Caution is needed when investigating the causal factors underlying diversity patterns for large taxonomic groups composed of taxa of different biogeographical affinities. Right-skewed diversity-elevation patterns may be produced by the differential

  4. Gendered production spaces and crop varietal selection: Case study in Yucatán, Mexico

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lope-Alzina, D.G.

    2007-01-01

    This paper examines the influence of gender relations and gendered domains on maize and squash varietal selection in a village in Yucatán State, southeast Mexico. Results of the exploratory study indicate that the traditional production spaces of homegardens and agricultural fields are complementary

  5. Effects of plant species identity, diversity and soil fertility on biodegradation of phenanthrene in soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyelami, Ayodeji O; Okere, Uchechukwu V; Orwin, Kate H; De Deyn, Gerlinde B; Jones, Kevin C; Semple, Kirk T

    2013-02-01

    The work presented in this paper investigated the effects of plant species composition, species diversity and soil fertility on biodegradation of (14)C-phenanthrene in soil. The two soils used were of contrasting fertility, taken from long term unfertilised and fertilised grassland, showing differences in total nitrogen content (%N). Plant communities consisted of six different plant species: two grasses, two forbs, and two legume species, and ranged in species richness from 1 to 6. The degradation of (14)C-phenanthrene was evaluated by measuring indigenous catabolic activity following the addition of the contaminant to soil using respirometry. Soil fertility was a driving factor in all aspects of (14)C-phenanthrene degradation; lag phase, maximum rates and total extents of (14)C-phenanthrene mineralisation were higher in improved soils compared to unimproved soils. Plant identity had a significant effect on the lag phase and extents of mineralisation. Soil fertility was the major influence also on abundance of microbial communities.

  6. Mechanisms for increased soil C storage with increasing temporal and spatial plant diversity in Agroecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiemann, L. K.; Grandy, S.; Marin-Spiotta, E.; Atkinson, E. E.

    2012-12-01

    Generally, there are positive relationships between plant species diversity and net primary production and other key ecosystem functions. However, the effects of aboveground diversity on soil microbial communities and ecosystem processes they mediate, such as soil C sequestration, remain unclear. In this study, we used an 11-y cropping diversity study where increases in diversity have increased crop yields. At the experimental site, temporal diversity is altered using combinations of annual crop rotations, while spatial diversity is altered using cover crop species. We used five treatments ranging in diversity from one to five species consisting of continuous corn with no cover crop or one cover crop and corn-soy-wheat rotations with no cover, one cover or two cover crop species. We collected soils from four replicate plots of each treatment and measured the distribution of mega- (>2 mm), macro- (0.25-2 mm), and micro- (0.053-0.25 mm) aggregates. Within each aggregate size class, we also measured total soil C and N, permanganate oxidizable C (POXC), extracellular enzyme activities (EEA), and microbial community structure with phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analysis. We use these data to address the impacts of both rotational and cover crop diversity on soil physical structure, associated microbial community structure and activity and soil C storage. As spatial diversity increased, we found concurrent increases in mega-aggregate abundance as well as increasing soil C in the mega- and micro-aggregates but not macro-aggregates. The proportion of total soil C in each aggregate size class that is relatively labile (POXC) was highest in the micro-aggregates, as was enzyme activity associated with labile C acquisition across all levels of diversity. Enzyme activity associated with more recalcitrant forms of soil C was highest in the mega-aggregate class, also across all diversity levels; however, the ratio of labile to recalcitrant EEA increased with increasing diversity

  7. Soil fertility and plant diversity enhance microbial performance in metal-polluted soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefanowicz, Anna M; Kapusta, Paweł; Szarek-Łukaszewska, Grażyna; Grodzińska, Krystyna; Niklińska, Maria; Vogt, Rolf D

    2012-11-15

    This study examined the effects of soil physicochemical properties (including heavy metal pollution) and vegetation parameters on soil basal respiration, microbial biomass, and the activity and functional richness of culturable soil bacteria and fungi. In a zinc and lead mining area (S Poland), 49 sites were selected to represent all common plant communities and comprise the area's diverse soil types. Numerous variables describing habitat properties were reduced by PCA to 7 independent factors, mainly representing subsoil type (metal-rich mining waste vs. sand), soil fertility (exchangeable Ca, Mg and K, total C and N, organic C), plant species richness, phosphorus content, water-soluble heavy metals (Zn, Cd and Pb), clay content and plant functional diversity (based on graminoids, legumes and non-leguminous forbs). Multiple regression analysis including these factors explained much of the variation in most microbial parameters; in the case of microbial respiration and biomass, it was 86% and 71%, respectively. The activity of soil microbes was positively affected mainly by soil fertility and, apparently, by the presence of mining waste in the subsoil. The mining waste contained vast amounts of trace metals (total Zn, Cd and Pb), but it promoted microbial performance due to its inherently high content of macronutrients (total Ca, Mg, K and C). Plant species richness had a relatively strong positive effect on all microbial parameters, except for the fungal component. In contrast, plant functional diversity was practically negligible in its effect on microbes. Other explanatory variables had only a minor positive effect (clay content) or no significant influence (phosphorus content) on microbial communities. The main conclusion from this study is that high nutrient availability and plant species richness positively affected the soil microbes and that this apparently counteracted the toxic effects of metal contamination.

  8. The identity of belowground herbivores, not herbivore diversity, mediates impacts on plant productivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milosavljević, Ivan; Esser, Aaron D.; Bosque-Pérez, Nilsa A.; Crowder, David W.

    2016-12-01

    Across many ecosystems, increases in species biodiversity generally results in greater resource acquisition by consumers. Few studies examining the impacts of consumer diversity on resource capture have focused on terrestrial herbivores, however, especially taxa that feed belowground. Here we conducted field mesocosm experiments to examine the effects of variation in species richness and composition within a community of wireworm herbivores on wheat plant productivity. Our experiments involved wireworm communities consisting of between one and three species, with all possible combinations of species represented. We found that the presence of wireworms reduced plant biomass and seed viability, but wireworm species richness did not impact these plant metrics. Species identity effects were strong, as two species, Limonius californicus and Selatosomus pruininus, had significantly stronger impacts on plants compared to L. infuscatus. Communities with either of the two most impactful species consistently had the greatest impact on wheat plants. The effects of wireworms were thus strongly dependent on the particular species present rather than the overall diversity of the wireworm community. More broadly, our study supports the general finding that the identity of particular consumer species within communities often has greater impacts on ecosystem functioning than species richness.

  9. Diverse Roles of Lysin-Motif (LysM Proteins in Mediating Plant-Microbe Interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinrong WAN

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Lysin-motif (LysM is a protein domain initially identified in a phage protein responsible for binding peptidoglycan, an important component of bacterial cell walls. LysM-containing proteins are distributed in diverse organisms, ranging from microbes to plants and animals (including human beings. Recent studies demonstrated that this group of proteins plays different roles in mediating plant-microbe interactions, leading to defense, symbiosis, or suppression of host defense. These roles are probably related to their potential ability to recognize and bind a specific signal molecule, such as chitooligosaccharides, peptidoglycan, nodulation factors (NFs, and mycorrhization factors (MFs.

  10. Disturbance in dry coastal dunes in Denmark promotes diversity of plants and arthropods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brunbjerg, Ane Kirstine; Jørgensen, Gorm Pilgaard; Nielsen, Kristian Mandsberg;

    2015-01-01

    Naturally disturbed coastal dunes have become strongly reduced during the last century due to the cessation of grazing by domestic herbivores, dune stabilization initiatives, and increasing nitrogen deposition, all promoting encroachment by grasses, shrubs and woody plants. We assessed the effects......, trampled paths and their paired controls. We used Nonmetric Multidimensional Scaling (NMDS) ordination to assess differences in species composition of disturbed areas and controls. Ordination scores were used as response variables in Linear Mixed Effect (LME) models to test for the effects of disturbances...... responded differently to different disturbances. Arthropod communities were more diverse in disturbed plots and hosted species often found in early successional habitats of potential conservation value. Disturbance promoted β-diversity, but affected plants more than arthropods, likely because...

  11. The relationship between soil physical properties and alpine plant diversity on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lin Tang

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Through a large-scale research, we examined the heterogeneity of soil properties and plant diversity, as well as their relationships across alpine grassland types on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The soil pH and EC value increased with the constant deepening of the soil in all the three alpine grassland types which in order of absolute value in every soil layer were alpine desert steppe, alpine steppe and alpine meadow. Among the three grassland types, the alpine meadow possessed the highest SM but the lowest SBD. For plant diversity, alpine meadow was the highest, alpine desert steppe ranked the second and alpine steppe was the last. SM and SBD were the highest influential soil physical properties to species richness, but with opposite effects.

  12. Discharge capacity of sluiceway channel of water intake structure for diversion power plant in winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N.P. Lavrov

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents results of research hydraulic processes at the intake structures of diversion power plants in winter. On the basis of the physical modeling results the flow characteristics of sluiceway channel of water intake on the river Issyk-Ata, Kyrgyzstan were determined. Statistical models of discharges of elements of sluiceway channel with their mutual influence were obtained, using the methods of experimental design and data analysis. The influence of the concentration of brash ice on the sluiceway channel and its elements is described. The comparison of experimental data with data obtained by other authors before is made by comparing flow coefficients. Recommendations for normal operation of ice pass at sluiceway track channel of water intake structure for diversion power plant are given.

  13. How does vineyard management intensity affect inter-row plant diversity and associated root parameters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winter, Silvia; Labuda, Thomas; Probus, Sandra; Penke, Nicole; Himmelbauer, Margarita; Loiskandl, Willibald; Strauss, Peter; Bauer, Thomas; Popescu, Daniela; Comsa, Maria; Bunea, Claudiu-Ioan; Zaller, Johann G.; Kriechbaum, Monika

    2017-04-01

    Vineyard management has changed dramatically in the last 50 years. In many wine-growing regions, vineyard inter-rows are kept clean of vegetation by frequent tillage or use of herbicides to establish bare soil systems. In the last thirty years, policy-makers and several winegrowers have realized that temporary or permanent vegetation cover between the vine rows may increase ecosystem services like soil erosion mitigation, soil fertility and biodiversity conservation. The inter-row area of a vineyard can host a diverse flora providing habitat and food resources for pollinating insects and natural enemies of pests. The goal of this study was to analyze the influence of different soil management intensities on plant diversity and root parameters in the vineyard inter-rows. We investigated 15 vineyards in Romania and 14 in Austria to study the effects of three different management intensities on plant diversity, above and below-ground plant biomass, total root length and surface area of roots. Management intensity ranged from bare soil inter-rows to alternative soil tillage every second year to permanent vegetation cover for more than five years. In each vineyard inter-row, six soil samples (7 cm diameter and 10 cm height) of the upper soil layer were extracted for root analyses. Root were separated from the soil, stained and finally scanned and analyzed with the WinRHIZO software. Finally, roots were dried at 70°C to obtain dry matter of the root samples. Vegetation cover and vascular plant diversity was recorded in four 1 m2 plots within each vineyard inter-row two times a year. The most intensive bare soil management regime in Romania significantly reduced root biomass, total root length and surface area in comparison to the alternative and permanent vegetation cover management. Plant biodiversity was also reduced by intensive management, but differences were not significant. While alternative tillage every second year showed the highest values of plant species

  14. Species diversity of plant communities from territories with natural origin radionuclides contamination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaneva, A.V.; Belykh, E.S.; Maystrenko, T.A.; Grusdev, B.I.; Zainullin, V.G.; Vakhrusheva, O.M. [Institute of Biology, Komi Scientific Center, Ural Division of RAS, Syktyvkar, 167982 (Russian Federation); Oughton, D. [Norwegian University of Life Sciences, P.O. Box 5003, NO-1432 Aas (Norway)

    2014-07-01

    Since plants dominate every landscape, the impact of any environmental stressor on plants can directly affect the structure and function of an ecosystem, resulting in decreased primary productivity and degradation of wildlife habitat. The investigation goal of the present research was to study how vascular plant species' composition at a former radium mining site could be related to i) soil contamination with heavy metals and uranium and thorium decay chain radionuclides and ii) soil agrochemical properties. Between the 1930's and 1950's, the commercial extraction of radium, storage of the uranium mill tailings and radium production wastes, together with deactivation of the site with a mixture of sand and gravel completely destroyed plant communities in the vicinity of Vodny settlement (Komi Republic, Russia). The plant cover recovery started more than 60 years ago, and resulted in overgrowing with common grassland plant species. Three meadow sites were investigated, one with low contamination (on the territory of former radium production plant), one with high contamination (waste storage cell) and a reference sites out of the radiochemical plant zone of influence, but with similar natural conditions. Geo-botanical descriptions revealed 134 vascular plant species from 34 families in the meadow communities studied. The greatest richness was seen for Poaceae, Asteraceae, Rosaceae and Fabaceae families; others had 1-5 species. The highest richness in diversity was seen at reference sites with 95 vascular plant species. 87 species were registered on low contaminated sites and 75 species on high contaminated. Perennial herbs were the dominant life form on all the studied meadow communities. Arboreal species expansion in vegetation was noted at both experimental and reference sites. Shannon index calculations indicated a significant (p<0.05) decrease in species diversity on sample areas of the highly contaminated radioactive waste storage cell. Mean values

  15. Enhanced interannual precipitation variability increases plant functional diversity that in turn ameliorates negative impact on productivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gherardi, Laureano A; Sala, Osvaldo E

    2015-12-01

    Although precipitation interannual variability is projected to increase due to climate change, effects of changes in precipitation variance have received considerable less attention than effects of changes in the mean state of climate. Interannual precipitation variability effects on functional diversity and its consequences for ecosystem functioning are assessed here using a 6-year rainfall manipulation experiment. Five precipitation treatments were switched annually resulting in increased levels of precipitation variability while maintaining average precipitation constant. Functional diversity showed a positive response to increased variability due to increased evenness. Dominant grasses decreased and rare plant functional types increased in abundance because grasses showed a hump-shaped response to precipitation with a maximum around modal precipitation, whereas rare species peaked at high precipitation values. Increased functional diversity ameliorated negative effects of precipitation variability on primary production. Rare species buffered the effect of precipitation variability on the variability in total productivity because their variance decreases with increasing precipitation variance.

  16. Effects of Previous Land-Use on Plant Species Composition and Diversity in Mediterranean Forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kouba, Yacine; Martínez-García, Felipe; de Frutos, Ángel; Alados, Concepción L

    2015-01-01

    At some point in their history, most forests in the Mediterranean Basin have been subjected to intensive management or converted to agriculture land. Knowing how forest plant communities recovered after the abandonment of forest-management or agricultural practices (including livestock grazing) provides a basis for investigating how previous land management have affected plant species diversity and composition in forest ecosystems. Our study investigated the consequences of historical "land management" practices on present-day Mediterranean forests by comparing species assemblages and the diversity of (i) all plant species and (ii) each ecological group defined by species' habitat preferences and successional status (i.e., early-, mid-, and late-successional species). We compared forest stands that differed both in land-use history and in successional stage. In addition, we evaluated the value of those stands for biodiversity conservation. The study revealed significant compositional differentiation among stands that was due to among-stand variations in the diversity (namely, species richness and evenness) of early-, intermediate-, and late-successional species. Historical land management has led to an increase in compositional divergences among forest stands and the loss of late-successional forest species.

  17. Trocas gasosas em videira sob regime de estresse hídrico. II. fotorrespiração e comportamento varietal Gas exchanges in grapevines under water stress regime. II. photorespiration and varietal behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murillo de Albuquerque Regina

    1999-01-01

    Full Text Available Analisou-se a fotorrespiração em folhas de videira (Vitis vinifera L. submetidas a um regime de estresse hídrico, com o objetivo de caracterizar o comportamento de diferentes cultivares. Foram utilizadas plantas de dois anos, enxertadas sobre o porta-enxerto Fercal, plantadas em vasos plásticos e cultivadas em ambiente controlado. A fotorrespiração foi calculada a partir de medidas das trocas gasosas foliares. Os valores absolutos da fotorrespiração variaram pouco entre cultivares e nível de irrigação; já a eficiência da carboxilação e o ponto de compensação ao CO2 foram bastante afetados pelo estresse hídrico, o que revela diferentes níveis de sensibilidade varietal. Foi verificada a ocorrência de inibição não-estomática da fotossíntese, afetando diferencialmente as cultivares analisadas. Destacou-se, ainda, a maior adaptação da Chardonnay às condições de estresse hídrico, em oposição à grande sensibilidade da Sémillon e da Ugni blanc.The photorespiration in grapevines (Vitis vinifera L. leaves subjected to a water stress regime was analysed with the purpose of characterizing the behavior of different cultivars. Two-year old plants were used, grafted on Fercal, planted in plastic pots and cultivated in controlled environment. The photorespiration was calculated from leaf gas exchange measurements taken by means of a portable infrared CO2 analyser (LCA3-ADC, working in an open circuit. The absolute photorespiration values varied little among cultivars and level of irrigation, whereas the carboxylation efficiency and the CO2 compensation point were highly affected by the water stress, thereby evidencing different varietal sensitivity levels. The occurrence of a nonstomatal inhibition of the photosynthesis was verified affecting in a specific way the cultivars analysed. The Chardonnay adapted itself better to the water stress conditions as opposed to the high sensitivity on the part of Sémillon and Ugni blanc.

  18. The importance of individuals: intraspecific diversity of mycorrhizal plants and fungi in ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, David; Martin, Francis; Cairney, John W G; Anderson, Ian C

    2012-05-01

    A key component of biodiversity is the number and abundance of individuals (i.e. genotypes), and yet such intraspecific diversity is rarely considered when investigating the effects of biodiversity of mycorrhizal plants and fungi on ecosystem processes. Within a species, individuals vary considerably in important reproductive and functional attributes, including carbon fixation, mycelial growth and nutrient utilization, but this is driven by both genetic and environmental (including climatic) factors. The interactions between individual plants and mycorrhizal fungi can have important consequences for the maintenance of biodiversity and regulation of resource transfers in ecosystems. There is also emerging evidence that assemblages of genotypes may affect ecosystem processes to a similar extent as assemblages of species. The application of whole-genome sequencing and population genomics to mycorrhizal plants and fungi will be crucial to determine the extent to which individual variation in key functional attributes is genetically based. We argue the need to unravel the importance of the diversity (especially assemblages of different evenness and richness) of individuals of both mycorrhizal plants and fungi, and the need to take a 'community genetics' approach to better understand the functional significance of the biodiversity of mycorrhizal symbioses. © 2012 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2012 New Phytologist Trust.

  19. Herbarium Celebense (CEB and its role in supporting research on plant diversity of Sulawesi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RAMADHANIL

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Sulawesi is the largest island in Wallacea region and a biogeographically unique area. The island is very rich in endemic species, worldwide known only known from Sulawesi. Nevertheless, scientific knowledge of the plants of Sulawesi is still limited and there is a lack of botanical exploration and publications. In 2000, Tadulako University of Palu with support of the German Research Foundation (DFG, the Universities of Göttingen and Leiden and the Herbarium Bogoriense, has constructed a herbarium, the Herbarium Celebense. The herbarium has been registered in the International Index Herbariorum (New York with the abbreviation CEB. The Herbarium Celebense contains about 3000 plant specimens, especially from Central Sulawesi and mainly spermatophytes and pteridophytes. This article reviews the current knowedge of plant diversity of the Sulawesi and Wallacea bioregion as a basis for the conservation of its rich flora.

  20. Discovery of structurally diverse and bioactive compounds from plant resources in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Sheng-ping YANG; Jian-min YUE

    2012-01-01

    This review describes the major discoveries of structurally diverse and/or biologically significant compounds from plant resources in China,mainly from the traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs) since the establishment of our research group in 1999.In the past decade,a large array of biologically significant and novel structures has been identified from plant resources (or TCM) in our laboratory.The structural modification of several biologically important compounds led to more than 400 derivatives,some of which exhibited significantly improved activities and provided opportunities to elucidate the structure-activity relationship of the related compound class.These findings are important for drug discovery and help us understand the biological basis for the traditional applications of these plants in TCM.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2003-05-02

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

  2. Diversity of the Mountain Flora of Central Asia with Emphasis on Alkaloid-Producing Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karimjan Tayjanov

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The mountains of Central Asia with 70 large and small mountain ranges represent species-rich plant biodiversity hotspots. Major mountains include Saur, Tarbagatai, Dzungarian Alatau, Tien Shan, Pamir-Alai and Kopet Dag. Because a range of altitudinal belts exists, the region is characterized by high biological diversity at ecosystem, species and population levels. In addition, the contact between Asian and Mediterranean flora in Central Asia has created unique plant communities. More than 8100 plant species have been recorded for the territory of Central Asia; about 5000–6000 of them grow in the mountains. The aim of this review is to summarize all the available data from 1930 to date on alkaloid-containing plants of the Central Asian mountains. In Saur 301 of a total of 661 species, in Tarbagatai 487 out of 1195, in Dzungarian Alatau 699 out of 1080, in Tien Shan 1177 out of 3251, in Pamir-Alai 1165 out of 3422 and in Kopet Dag 438 out of 1942 species produce alkaloids. The review also tabulates the individual alkaloids which were detected in the plants from the Central Asian mountains. Quite a large number of the mountain plants produce neurotoxic and cytotoxic alkaloids, indicating that a strong chemical defense is needed under the adverse environmental conditions of these mountains with presumably high pressure from herbivores.

  3. Diversity of endophytic bacteria in ginseng and their potential for plant growth promotion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vendan, Regupathy Thamizh; Yu, Young Joon; Lee, Sun Hee; Rhee, Young Ha

    2010-10-01

    Endophytic bacteria have been found in virtually every plant studied, where they colonize the internal tissues of their host plant and can form a range of different beneficial relationships. The diversity of bacterial endophytes associated with ginseng plants of varying age levels in Korea was investigated. Fifty-one colonies were isolated from the interior of ginseng stems. Although a mixed composition of endophyte communities was recovered from ginseng based on the results of 16S rDNA analysis, bacteria of the genus Bacillus and Staphylococcus dominated in 1-year-old and 4-year-old plants, respectively. Phylogenetic analysis revealed four clusters: Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, α-Proteobacteria, and γ-Proteobacteria, with Firmicutes being predominant. To evaluate the plant growth promoting activities, 18 representative isolates were selected. Amplification of nifH gene confirmed the presence of diazotrophy in only two isolates. Half of the isolates solubilized mineral phosphate. Except four, all the other endophytic isolates produced significant amounts of indole acetic acid in nutrient broth. Iron sequestering siderophore production was detected in seven isolates. Isolates E-I-3 (Bacillus megaterium), E-I-4 (Micrococcus luteus), E-I-8 (B. cereus), and E-I-20 (Lysinibacillus fusiformis) were positive for most of the plant growth promoting traits, indicating their role in growth promotion of ginseng.

  4. Roles of mesophyll conductance and plant functional diversities in tropical photosynthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, L.

    2013-12-01

    Tropical photosynthesis dominates global terrestrial gross primary production (GPP) and will likely play a defining role in determining how global GPP will respond to climate change. Yet, our current understanding of biological, ecological, edaphic and environmental controls on tropical photosynthesis is poor. The overly simplistic schemes that current Earth System Models use to simulate tropical photosynthesis cannot capture the functional diversities associated with high species diversities in the tropics. New approaches that explicitly represent the functional diversities of tropical photosynthesis in Earth System Models are needed in order to realistically model responses of tropical photosynthesis to increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations and associated climate changes. To establish a basis for such approaches, we conducted intensive field measurements of leaf photosynthesis at three forest sites along a strong rainfall gradient in Panama in 2012-2013. The three sites are Parque Natural Metropolitano, Gamboa, and Parque Nacional San Lorenzo. The Parque Natural Metropolitano receives an annual precipitation of less than 1800mm and Parque Nacional San Lorenzo over 3300 mm with Gamboa in between. The three sites differ in species diversity with Parque Nacional San Lorenzo having the highest species diversity and Parque Nacional San Lorenzo the lowest. At the three contrasting sites, we measured A/Ci curves, leaf traits and leaf nutrient (N and P) contents of about 100 species. We determined mesophyll conductance with the LeafWeb approach. From these measurements, we developed practical but realistic parameterizations of functional diversities of tropical plant species at the three sites and implemented these parameterizations in the latest version of the Community Land Model. We found that mesophyll conductance is key to representing functional diversities of tropical forest species. Without it, responses of tropical photosynthesis to increased atmospheric CO2

  5. Use of microsatellite markers for the assessment of bambara groundnut breeding system and varietal purity before genome sequencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Wai Kuan; Muchugi, Alice; Muthemba, Samuel; Kariba, Robert; Mavenkeni, Busiso Olga; Hendre, Prasad; Song, Bo; Van Deynze, Allen; Massawe, Festo; Mayes, Sean

    2016-06-01

    Maximizing the research output from a limited investment is often the major challenge for minor and underutilized crops. However, such crops may be tolerant to biotic and abiotic stresses and are adapted to local, marginal, and low-input environments. Their development through breeding will provide an important resource for future agricultural system resilience and diversification in the context of changing climates and the need to achieve food security. The African Orphan Crops Consortium recognizes the values of genomic resources in facilitating the improvement of such crops. Prior to beginning genome sequencing there is a need for an assessment of line varietal purity and to estimate any residual heterozygosity. Here we present an example from bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc.), an underutilized drought tolerant African legume. Two released varieties from Zimbabwe, identified as potential genotypes for whole genome sequencing (WGS), were genotyped with 20 species-specific SSR markers. The results indicate that the cultivars are actually a mix of related inbred genotypes, and the analysis allowed a strategy of single plant selection to be used to generate non-heterogeneous DNA for WGS. The markers also confirmed very low levels of heterozygosity within individual plants. The application of a pre-screen using co-dominant microsatellite markers is expected to substantially improve the genome assembly, compared to a cultivar bulking approach that could have been adopted.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José R Ferrer-Paris

    Full Text Available 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.

  8. Effects of time since fire on birds in a plant diversity hotspot

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalmandrier, Loïc; Midgley, Guy F.; Barnard, Phoebe; Sirami, Clélia

    2013-05-01

    Global changes are influencing fire regimes in many parts of the world. In the Fynbos plant diversity hotspot (Cape Floristic Region, South Africa), fire frequency has increased in protected areas where the mean fire interval went from 12-19 to 6-9 years between 1970 and 2000. Fire is one of the main drivers of plant diversity in the Cape Floristic Region. Too frequent fires threaten the persistence of slow-maturing plant species, and such insights have led to the adoption of fire management principles based on plant responses. The effects of fire on Fynbos fauna are much more poorly understood, and have not generally been considered in depth in Fynbos conservation policies, planning or management. We assessed the response of bird communities to long-term fire-induced vegetation changes using space-for-time substitution. We studied bird communities, vegetation structure and plant functional composition in 84 Fynbos plots burnt between two and 18 years before. Ten of the 14 bird species analysed showed a significant change in their abundance with time since fire. We observed a significant species turnover along the post-fire succession due to changes both in vegetation structure and plant functional composition, with a characteristic shift from non-Fynbos specialists and granivorous species to Fynbos specialists and nectarivorous species. If current trends of increasing fire frequency continue, Fynbos endemic birds such as nectarivores may become vulnerable. Conservation management should thus aim more carefully to maintain mosaics of Fynbos patches of different ages. Future research needs to estimate the proportion of vegetation of different ages and patch sizes needed to support dependent fauna, particularly endemics.

  9. Crop and varietal diversification of rainfed rice based cropping systems for higher productivity and profitability in Eastern India

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    B Lal; Priyanka Gautam; B B Panda; R Raja; Teekam Singh; R Tripathi; M Shahid; A K Nayak

    2017-01-01

    Rice-rice system and rice fallows are no longer productive in Southeast Asia. Crop and varietal diversification of the rice based cropping systems may improve the productivity and profitability of the systems...

  10. Illuminating a plant's tissue-specific metabolic diversity using computational metabolomics and information theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Dapeng; Heiling, Sven; Baldwin, Ian T; Gaquerel, Emmanuel

    2016-11-22

    Secondary metabolite diversity is considered an important fitness determinant for plants' biotic and abiotic interactions in nature. This diversity can be examined in two dimensions. The first one considers metabolite diversity across plant species. A second way of looking at this diversity is by considering the tissue-specific localization of pathways underlying secondary metabolism within a plant. Although these cross-tissue metabolite variations are increasingly regarded as important readouts of tissue-level gene function and regulatory processes, they have rarely been comprehensively explored by nontargeted metabolomics. As such, important questions have remained superficially addressed. For instance, which tissues exhibit prevalent signatures of metabolic specialization? Reciprocally, which metabolites contribute most to this tissue specialization in contrast to those metabolites exhibiting housekeeping characteristics? Here, we explore tissue-level metabolic specialization in Nicotiana attenuata, an ecological model with rich secondary metabolism, by combining tissue-wide nontargeted mass spectral data acquisition, information theory analysis, and tandem MS (MS/MS) molecular networks. This analysis was conducted for two different methanolic extracts of 14 tissues and deconvoluted 895 nonredundant MS/MS spectra. Using information theory analysis, anthers were found to harbor the most specialized metabolome, and most unique metabolites of anthers and other tissues were annotated through MS/MS molecular networks. Tissue-metabolite association maps were used to predict tissue-specific gene functions. Predictions for the function of two UDP-glycosyltransferases in flavonoid metabolism were confirmed by virus-induced gene silencing. The present workflow allows biologists to amortize the vast amount of data produced by modern MS instrumentation in their quest to understand gene function.

  11. Overstory structure and soil nutrients effect on plant diversity in unmanaged moist tropical forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautam, Mukesh Kumar; Manhas, Rajesh Kumar; Tripathi, Ashutosh Kumar

    2016-08-01

    Forests with intensive management past are kept unmanaged to restore diversity and ecosystem functioning. Before perpetuating abandonment after protracted restitution, understanding its effect on forest vegetation is desirable. We studied plant diversity and its relation with environmental variables and stand structure in northern Indian unmanaged tropical moist deciduous forest. We hypothesized that post-abandonment species richness would have increased, and the structure of contemporary forest would be heterogeneous. Vegetation structure, composition, and diversity were recorded, in forty 0.1 ha plots selected randomly in four forest ranges. Three soil samples per 0.1 ha were assessed for physicochemistry, fine sand, and clay mineralogy. Contemporary forest had less species richness than pre-abandonment reference period. Fourteen species were recorded as either seedling or sapling, suggesting reappearance or immigration. For most species, regeneration was either absent or impaired. Ordination and multiple regression results showed that exchangeable base cations and phosphorous affected maximum tree diversity and structure variables. Significant correlations between soil moisture and temperature, and shrub layer was observed, besides tree layer correspondence with shrub richness, suggesting that dense overstory resulting from abandonment through its effect on soil conditions, is responsible for dense shrub layer. Herb layer diversity was negatively associated with tree layer and shrub overgrowth (i.e. Mallotus spp.). Protracted abandonment may not reinforce species richness and heterogeneity; perhaps result in high tree and shrub density in moist deciduous forests, which can impede immigrating or reappearing plant species establishment. This can be overcome by density/basal area reduction strategies, albeit for both tree and shrub layer.

  12. Plant Biodiversity in Urbanized Areas Plant Functional Traits in Space and Time, Plant Rarity and Phylogenetic Diversity

    CERN Document Server

    Knapp, Sonja

    2010-01-01

    Urbanization is one of the main drivers of global change. It often takes place in areas with high biodiversity, threatening species worldwide. To protect biodiversity not only outside but also right within urban areas, knowledge about the effects of urban land use on species assemblages is essential. Sonja Knapp compares several aspects of plant biodiversity between urban and rural areas in Germany. Using extensive databases and modern statistical methods, she goes beyond species richness: Urban areas are rich in species but plant species in urban areas are closer related to each other than plant species in rural areas, respectively. The urban environment, characterized by high temperatures and frequent disturbances, changes the functional composition of the flora. It promotes e.g. short-lived species with leaves adapted to drought but threatens insect-pollinated or wind-dispersed species. The author claims that the protection of biodiversity should not only focus on species richness but also on functional an...

  13. Plant diversity moderates drought stress in grasslands: Implications from a large real-world study on (13)C natural abundances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klaus, Valentin H; Hölzel, Norbert; Prati, Daniel; Schmitt, Barbara; Schöning, Ingo; Schrumpf, Marion; Solly, Emily F; Hänsel, Falk; Fischer, Markus; Kleinebecker, Till

    2016-10-01

    Land-use change and intensification play a key role in the current biodiversity crisis. The resulting species loss can have severe effects on ecosystem functions and services, thereby increasing ecosystem vulnerability to climate change. We explored whether land-use intensification (i.e. fertilization intensity), plant diversity and other potentially confounding environmental factors may be significantly related to water use (i.e. drought stress) of grassland plants. Drought stress was assessed using δ(13)C abundances in aboveground plant biomass of 150 grassland plots across a gradient of land-use intensity. Under water shortage, plants are forced to increasingly take up the heavier (13)C due to closing stomata leading to an enrichment of (13)C in biomass. Plants were sampled at the community level and for single species, which belong to three different functional groups (one grass, one herb, two legumes). Results show that plant diversity was significantly related to the δ(13)C signal in community, grass and legume biomass indicating that drought stress was lower under higher diversity, although this relation was not significant for the herb species under study. Fertilization, in turn, mostly increased drought stress as indicated by more positive δ(13)C values. This effect was mostly indirect by decreasing plant diversity. In line with these results, we found similar patterns in the δ(13)C signal of the organic matter in the topsoil, indicating a long history of these processes. Our study provided strong indication for a positive biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationship with reduced drought stress at higher plant diversity. However, it also underlined a negative reinforcing situation: as land-use intensification decreases plant diversity in grasslands, this might subsequently increases drought sensitivity. Vice-versa, enhancing plant diversity in species-poor agricultural grasslands may moderate negative effects of future climate change.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Li

    2010-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Jian-Feng; Li, Li; Sheen, Jen

    2010-01-14

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

  16. Organic farming and landscape structure: effects on insect-pollinated plant diversity in intensively managed grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  17. The effects of grassland degradation on plant diversity, primary productivity, and soil fertility in the alpine region of Asia's headwaters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xuexia; Dong, Shikui; Yang, Bing; Li, Yuanyuan; Su, Xukun

    2014-10-01

    A 3-year survey was conducted to explore the relationships among plant composition, productivity, and soil fertility characterizing four different degradation stages of an alpine meadow in the source region of the Yangtze and Yellow Rivers, China. Results showed that plant species diversity, productivity, and soil fertility of the top 30-cm soil layer significantly declined with degradation stages of alpine meadow over the study period. The productivity of forbs significantly increased with degradation stages, and the soil potassium stock was not affected by grassland degradation. The vegetation composition gradually shifted from perennial graminoids (grasses and sedges) to annual forbs along the degradation gradient. The abrupt change of response in plant diversity, plant productivity, and soil nutrients was demonstrated after heavy grassland degradation. Moreover, degradation can indicate plant species diversity and productivity through changing soil fertility. However, the clear relationships are difficult to establish. In conclusion, degradation influenced ecosystem function and services, such as plant species diversity, productivity, and soil carbon and nitrogen stocks. Additionally, both plant species diversity and soil nutrients were important predictors in different degradation stages of alpine meadows. To this end, heavy degradation grade was shown to cause shift of plant community in alpine meadow, which provided an important basis for sustaining ecosystem function, manipulating the vegetation composition of the area and restoring the degraded alpine grassland.

  18. Climate-suitable planting as a strategy for maintaining forest productivity and functional diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duveneck, Matthew J; Scheller, Robert M

    2015-09-01

    Within the time frame of the longevity of tree species, climate change will change faster than the ability of natural tree migration. Migration lags may result in reduced productivity and reduced diversity in forests under current management and climate change. We evaluated the efficacy of planting climate-suitable tree species (CSP), those tree species with current or historic distributions immediately south of a focal landscape, to maintain or increase aboveground biomass productivity, and species and functional diversity. We modeled forest change with the LANDIS-II forest simulation model for 100 years (2000-2100) at a 2-ha cell resolution and five-year time steps within two landscapes in the Great Lakes region (northeastern Minnesota and northern lower Michigan, USA). We compared current climate to low- and high-emission futures. We simulated a low-emission climate future with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2007 B1 emission scenario and the Parallel Climate Model Global Circulation Model (GCM). We simulated a high-emission climate future with the IPCC A1FI emission scenario and the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (GFDL) GCM. We compared current forest management practices (business-as-usual) to CSP management. In the CSP scenario, we simulated a target planting of 5.28% and 4.97% of forested area per five-year time step in the Minnesota and Michigan landscapes, respectively. We found that simulated CSP species successfully established in both landscapes under all climate scenarios. The presence of CSP species generally increased simulated aboveground biomass. Species diversity increased due to CSP; however, the effect on functional diversity was variable. Because the planted species were functionally similar to many native species, CSP did not result in a consistent increase nor decrease in functional diversity. These results provide an assessment of the potential efficacy and limitations of CSP management. These results have

  19. Pepino (Solanum muricatum) planting increased diversity and abundance of bacterial communities in karst area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Jinxiang; Yang, Hui; Long, Xiaohua; Liu, Zhaopu; Rengel, Zed

    2016-02-01

    Soil nutrients and microbial communities are the two key factors in revegetation of barren environments. Ecological stoichiometry plays an important role in ecosystem function and limitation, but the relationships between above- and belowground stoichiometry and the bacterial communities in a typical karst region are poorly understood. We used pepino (Solanum muricatum) to examine the stoichiometric traits between soil and foliage, and determine diversity and abundance of bacteria in the karst soil. The soil had a relatively high pH, low fertility, and coarse texture. Foliar N:P ratio and the correlations with soil nitrogen and phosphorus suggested nitrogen limitation. The planting of pepino increased soil urease activity and decreased catalase activity. Higher diversity of bacteria was determined in the pepino rhizosphere than bulk soil using a next-generation, Illumina-based sequencing approach. Proteobacteria, Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria and Bacteroidetes were the dominant phyla in all samples, accounting for more than 80% of the reads. On a genus level, all 625 detected genera were found in all rhizosphere and bulk soils, and 63 genera showed significant differences among samples. Higher Shannon and Chao 1 indices in the rhizosphere than bulk soil indicated that planting of pepino increased diversity and abundance of bacterial communities in karst area.

  20. Endophytes in the plant Huperzia serrata: fungal diversity and discovery of a new pentapeptide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Zhi-Qiang; Yang, Ying-Ying; Liu, Qiao-Xia; Sun, Cui-Cui; Jin, Yu; Wang, Yong

    2015-04-01

    Endophytic fungi are an underexploited resource of natural products and have a capacity to produce diverse classes of plant-derived secondary metabolites. Here, we investigated the diversity of endophytic fungi from Huperzia serrata and the potential for discovering novel fungal natural products. One hundred and fifty-five endophytic fungi isolates obtained from H. serrata, belonging to four classes Dothideomycetes (47.3 %), Sordariomycetes (36.8 %), Eurotiomycetes (10.6 %) and an undefined class (5.3 %, Mucoraceae), were grouped into nine genera based on morphological and molecular identification. Colletotrichum, Cladosporium, Sordariomycetes and Guignardia were the dominant genera, whereas the remaining genera were infrequent groups. To our knowledge, the fungal genera Mucor and Neurospora were first reported in Huperzia plant. Among these endophytic fungi isolates, strain B14, belonging to Penicillium oxalicum, gave a gray precipitate with Dragendorff's reagent. A new pentapeptide was isolated from the culture of strain B14, and its chemical structure was elucidated on the basis of spectroscopic data from (1)H NMR, (13)C NMR and ESI-MS/MS. Taken together, H. serrata has a significant diversity of endophytic fungi that could be a rich resource for the discovery of new natural products.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-09-01

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

  2. Desert farming benefits from microbial potential in arid soils and promotes diversity and plant health.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martina Köberl

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: To convert deserts into arable, green landscapes is a global vision, and desert farming is a strong growing area of agriculture world-wide. However, its effect on diversity of soil microbial communities, which are responsible for important ecosystem services like plant health, is still not known. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We studied the impact of long-term agriculture on desert soil in one of the most prominent examples for organic desert farming in Sekem (Egypt. Using a polyphasic methodological approach to analyse microbial communities in soil as well as associated with cultivated plants, drastic effects caused by 30 years of agriculture were detected. Analysing bacterial fingerprints, we found statistically significant differences between agricultural and native desert soil of about 60%. A pyrosequencing-based analysis of the 16S rRNA gene regions showed higher diversity in agricultural than in desert soil (Shannon diversity indices: 11.21/7.90, and displayed structural differences. The proportion of Firmicutes in field soil was significantly higher (37% than in the desert (11%. Bacillus and Paenibacillus play the key role: they represented 96% of the antagonists towards phytopathogens, and identical 16S rRNA sequences in the amplicon library and for isolates were detected. The proportion of antagonistic strains was doubled in field in comparison to desert soil (21.6%/12.4%; disease-suppressive bacteria were especially enriched in plant roots. On the opposite, several extremophilic bacterial groups, e.g., Acidimicrobium, Rubellimicrobium and Deinococcus-Thermus, disappeared from soil after agricultural use. The N-fixing Herbaspirillum group only occurred in desert soil. Soil bacterial communities were strongly driven by the a-biotic factors water supply and pH. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: After long-term farming, a drastic shift in the bacterial communities in desert soil was observed. Bacterial communities in agricultural

  3. Desert farming benefits from microbial potential in arid soils and promotes diversity and plant health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köberl, Martina; Müller, Henry; Ramadan, Elshahat M; Berg, Gabriele

    2011-01-01

    To convert deserts into arable, green landscapes is a global vision, and desert farming is a strong growing area of agriculture world-wide. However, its effect on diversity of soil microbial communities, which are responsible for important ecosystem services like plant health, is still not known. We studied the impact of long-term agriculture on desert soil in one of the most prominent examples for organic desert farming in Sekem (Egypt). Using a polyphasic methodological approach to analyse microbial communities in soil as well as associated with cultivated plants, drastic effects caused by 30 years of agriculture were detected. Analysing bacterial fingerprints, we found statistically significant differences between agricultural and native desert soil of about 60%. A pyrosequencing-based analysis of the 16S rRNA gene regions showed higher diversity in agricultural than in desert soil (Shannon diversity indices: 11.21/7.90), and displayed structural differences. The proportion of Firmicutes in field soil was significantly higher (37%) than in the desert (11%). Bacillus and Paenibacillus play the key role: they represented 96% of the antagonists towards phytopathogens, and identical 16S rRNA sequences in the amplicon library and for isolates were detected. The proportion of antagonistic strains was doubled in field in comparison to desert soil (21.6%/12.4%); disease-suppressive bacteria were especially enriched in plant roots. On the opposite, several extremophilic bacterial groups, e.g., Acidimicrobium, Rubellimicrobium and Deinococcus-Thermus, disappeared from soil after agricultural use. The N-fixing Herbaspirillum group only occurred in desert soil. Soil bacterial communities were strongly driven by the a-biotic factors water supply and pH. After long-term farming, a drastic shift in the bacterial communities in desert soil was observed. Bacterial communities in agricultural soil showed a higher diversity and a better ecosystem function for plant health but a

  4. [Diversity of plant in Jiaxing Shijiuyang ecological wetland for drinking water during operation].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Ya-Qiang; Wei, Hong-Bin; Cheng, Wang-Da; Zhang, Hong-Mei; Wang, Wei-Dong; Yin, Cheng-Qing

    2011-10-01

    The Shijiuyang ecological wetland for drinking water of Jiaxing City, Zhejiang Province is one of the biggest constructed wetlands for water resource protection in China. To ensure a deep understanding of the present status of the wetland vegetation of Shijiuyang ecological wetland which has been run for 2.5 years and provide support for the vegetation management of ecological wetland, systematic investigation was carried out by using plot method and quadrat method in October to November, 2010. The species composition, dynamics of plant diversity and the biomass production during operation were analyzed. Altogether 70 species belonging to 28 families and 62 genera were recorded. Among them, there were 26 wetland plants, 20 mesophytes, 14 emergent, 4 submerged, 6 floating ones. Compared with the preliminary stage, the species numbers of wetland plants increased significantly from 15 species to 70 species. The spatial pattern of riparian species diversity was examined by adopting the Simpson index and Shannon-Wiener index as species diversity indices. The results showed that the riparian species diversity was higher in the west of the Beijiaohe river (Simpson index = 0.468 3, Shannon-Wiener index = 0.835 2) than that in the south of the Dongsheng Road (Simpson index = 0.357 6, Shannon-Wiener index = 0.660 4). The analyses of quantitative characteristics of wetland vegetation showed that the plants in the root-channel purification zone in the south of the Dongsheng Road grew better than those in the west of the Beijiaohe river. With regard to the riparian vegetation, the riparian plants in the west of the Beijiaohe river were more abundant. The mean biomass production (dry weight) in the root-channel purification zone was 1.73 kg x m(-2) and the total area was 9.12 x 10(4) m2, so the total biomass production was estimated to be 157.8 t. In the same way, the mean riparian vegetation biomass production(dry weight) was 0.83 kg x m(-2) and the total vegetation area was 3

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grace, J.B.; Keeley, J.E.

    2006-01-01

    This study investigates patterns of plant diversity following wildfires in fire-prone shrublands of California, seeks to understand those patterns in terms of both local and landscape factors, and considers the implications for fire management. Ninety study sites were established following extensive wildfires in 1993, and 1000-m2 plots were used to sample a variety of parameters. Data on community responses were collected for five years following fire. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to relate plant species richness to plant abundance, fire severity, abiotic conditions, within-plot heterogeneity, stand age, and position in the landscape. Temporal dynamics of average richness response was also modeled. Richness was highest in the first year following fire, indicating postfire enhancement of diversity. A general decline in richness over time was detected, with year-to-year variation attributable to annual variations in precipitation. Peak richness in the landscape was found where (1) plant abundance was moderately high, (2) within-plot heterogeneity was high, (3) soils were moderately low in nitrogen, high in sand content, and with high rock cover, (4) fire severity was low, and (5) stands were young prior to fire. Many of these characteristics were correlated with position in the landscape and associated conditions. We infer from the SEM results that postfire richness in this system is strongly influenced by local conditions and that these conditions are, in turn, predictably related to landscape-level conditions. For example, we observed that older stands of shrubs were characterized by more severe fires, which were associated with a low recovery of plant cover and low richness. These results may have implications for the use of prescribed fire in this system if these findings extrapolate to prescribed burns as we would expect. ?? 2006 by the Ecological Society of America.

  6. Plant Functional Diversity Can Be Independent of Species Diversity: Observations Based on the Impact of 4-Yrs of Nitrogen and Phosphorus Additions in an Alpine Meadow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wei; Cheng, Ji-Min; Yu, Kai-Liang; Epstein, Howard E; Guo, Liang; Jing, Guang-Hua; Zhao, Jie; Du, Guo-Zhen

    2015-01-01

    Past studies have widely documented the decrease in species diversity in response to addition of nutrients, however functional diversity is often independent from species diversity. In this study, we conducted a field experiment to examine the effect of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilization ((NH4)2 HPO4) at 0, 15, 30 and 60 g m-2 yr-1 (F0, F15, F30 and F60) after 4 years of continuous fertilization on functional diversity and species diversity, and its relationship with productivity in an alpine meadow community on the Tibetan Plateau. To this purpose, three community-weighted mean trait values (specific leaf area, SLA; mature plant height, MPH; and seed size, SS) for 30 common species in each fertilization level were determined; three components of functional diversity (functional richness, FRic; functional evenness, FEve; and Rao's index of quadratic entropy, FRao) were quantified. Our results showed that: (i) species diversity sharply decreased, but functional diversity remained stable with fertilization; (ii) community-weighted mean traits (SLA and MPH) had a significant increase along the fertilization level; (iii) aboveground biomass was not correlated with functional diversity, but it was significantly correlated with species diversity and MPH. Our results suggest that decreases in species diversity due to fertilization do not result in corresponding changes in functional diversity. Functional identity of species may be more important than functional diversity in influencing aboveground productivity in this alpine meadow community, and our results also support the mass ratio hypothesis; that is, the traits of the dominant species influenced the community biomass production.

  7. Butterfly diversity in relation to nectar food plants from Bhor Tahsil, Pune District, Maharashtra, India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.K. Nimbalkar

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Floral attributes are well known to influence nectar feeding butterflies. However, there is paucity of information on food resources of adult butterflies as compared to that of larvae. The present study was carried out from Bhor Tahsil of Pune District, Maharashtra, India, during August 2007 to August 2009. A total of 64 butterfly species were recorded. Family Nymphalidae dominates in the study area, followed by Lycaenidae, Pieridae, Hesperiidae and Papilionidae. Nineteen nectar food plants were identified belonging to 10 plant families. Plants of the Asteraceae family are more used by butterflies as nectar food plants. Visits of butterflies were more frequent to flowers with tubular corollas than to non-tubular ones, to flowers coloured red, yellow, blue and purple than those coloured white and pink and to flower sources available for longer periods in the year. Species abundance reached the peak in the months during August to November. A decline in species abundance was observed from the months December to January and continued up to the end of May. Our findings are important with respect to monitoring butterfly and plant diversity and defining conservation strategies in the Bhor Tahsil.

  8. Shared and host-specific microbiome diversity and functioning of grapevine and accompanying weed plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samad, Abdul; Trognitz, Friederike; Compant, Stéphane; Antonielli, Livio; Sessitsch, Angela

    2017-04-01

    Weeds and crop plants select their microbiota from the same pool of soil microorganisms, however, the ecology of weed microbiomes is poorly understood. We analysed the microbiomes associated with roots and rhizospheres of grapevine and four weed species (Lamium amplexicaule L., Veronica arvensis L., Lepidium draba L. and Stellaria media L.) growing in proximity in the same vineyard using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. We also isolated and characterized 500 rhizobacteria and root endophytes from L. draba and grapevine. Microbiome data analysis revealed that all plants hosted significantly different microbiomes in the rhizosphere as well as in root compartment, however, differences were more pronounced in the root compartment. The shared microbiome of grapevine and the four weed species contained 145 OTUs (54.2%) in the rhizosphere, but only nine OTUs (13.2%) in the root compartment. Seven OTUs (12.3%) were shared in all plants and compartments. Approximately 56% of the major OTUs (>1%) showed more than 98% identity to bacteria isolated in this study. Moreover, weed-associated bacteria generally showed a higher species richness in the rhizosphere, whereas the root-associated bacteria were more diverse in the perennial plants grapevine and L. draba. Overall, weed isolates showed more plant growth-promoting characteristics compared with grapevine isolates. © 2016 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-06-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Camille E Granada

    2014-06-01

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

  11. Consequences of plant-chemical diversity for domestic goat food preference in Mediterranean forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baraza, Elena; Hódar, José A.; Zamora, Regino

    2009-01-01

    The domestic goat, a major herbivore in the Mediterranean basin, has demonstrated a strong ability to adapt its feeding behaviour to the chemical characteristics of food, selecting plants according to their nutritive quality. In this study, we determine some chemical characteristics related to plant nutritional quality and its variability among and within five tree species, these being the main components of the mountain forests of SE Spain, with the aim of determining their influence on food selection by this generalist herbivore. We analyse nitrogen, total phenols, condensed tannins and fibre concentration as an indicator of the nutritive value of the different trees. To determine the preference by the domestic goat, we performed two types of feeding-choice assays, where goats had to select between different species or between branches of the same species but from trees of different nutritional quality. The analysis of the plant nutritional quality showed significant differences in the chemical characteristics between species, and a high variability within species. However, when faced with different tree species, the domestic goat selected some of them but showed striking individual differences between goats. When selecting between trees of the same species, the goats showed no differential selection. This limited effect of chemical plant characteristics, together with the variability in foraging behaviour, resulted in a widespread consumption of diverse plant species, which can potentially modulate the effect of the goat on vegetation composition, and open the way for the conservation of traditional livestock grazing on natural protected areas.

  12. Diversity of nodular bacteria of Scorpiurus muricatus in western Algeria and their impact on plant growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouchiba, Zoulikha; Boukhatem, Zineb Faiza; Ighilhariz, Zohra; Derkaoui, Nouria; Kerdouh, Benaissa; Abdelmoumen, Hanaa; Abbas, Younes; Missbah El Idrissi, Mustapha; Bekki, Abdelkader

    2017-02-24

    A total of 51 bacterial strains were isolated from root nodules of Scorpiurus muricatus sampled from six regions of western Algeria. Strains diversity was assessed by rep-PCR amplification fingerprinting which had allowed grouping the isolates into 28 different clusters. Partial Nucleotide sequencing of 16SrRNA gene and BLAST analysis revealed that root nodules of Scorpiurus muricatus were colonized by different species close to Rhizobium vignae, Rhizobium radiobacter, Rhizobium leguminosarum, Phyllobacterium ifriquiensis, Phyllobacterium endophyticum, Starkeya sp. and Pseudomonas sp. However none of these strains was able to form nodule on its host plant even nod C was present in a single strain (SMT8a). The inoculation test showed a great improvement in inoculated plants growth compared to non-inoculated control. A significant amount of Indole Acetic Acid was produced by some strains but only two strains could solubilize phosphate. In this report we described for the first time, the diversity of bacteria isolated from root nodules of S. muricatus growing in different regions in west of Algeria and demonstrated their potential use in plant growth promotion.

  13. Endophytic fungi from medicinal plant Bauhinia forficata : Diversity and biotechnological potential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bezerra, Jadson D.P.; Nascimento, Carlos C.F.; Barbosa, Renan do N.; da Silva, Dianny C.V.; Svedese, Virgínia M.; Silva-Nogueira, Eliane B.; Gomes, Bruno S.; Paiva, Laura M.; Souza-Motta, Cristina M.

    2015-01-01

    Bauhinia forficata is native to South America and used with relative success in the folk medicine in Brazil. The diversity, antibacterial activity, and extracellular hydrolytic enzymes of endophytic fungi associated with this plant were studied. Plant samples, which included leaves, sepals, stems, and seeds, were used. Ninety-five endophytic fungal were isolated (18 from leaves, 22 from sepals, 46 from stems, and nine from seeds), comprising 28 species. The most frequently isolated species were Acremonium curvulum (9.5%), Aspergillus ochraceus (7.37%), Gibberella fujikuroi (10.53%), Myrothecium verrucaria (10.53%) and Trichoderma piluliferum (7.37%). Diversity and species richness were higher in stem tissues, and Sorensen’s index of similarity between the tissues was low. Eleven fungi showed antibacterial activity. Aspergillus ochraceus , Gibberella baccata , Penicillium commune , and P. glabrum were those with the greatest antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and/or Streptococcus pyogenes . Thirteen species showed proteolytic activity, particularly Phoma putaminum . Fourteen species were cellulase positive, particularly the Penicillium species and Myrmecridium schulzeri . All isolates tested were xylanase positive and 10 showed lipolytic activity, especially Penicillium glabrum . It is clear that the endophytic fungi from B. forficata have potential for the production of bioactive compounds and may be a source of new therapeutic agents for the effective treatment of diseases in humans, other animals, and plants. To our knowledge, this is the first study of endophytic fungi from different tissues of B. forficata and their biotechnological potential. PMID:26221088

  14. Endophytic fungi from medicinal plant Bauhinia forficata: Diversity and biotechnological potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bezerra, Jadson D P; Nascimento, Carlos C F; Barbosa, Renan do N; da Silva, Dianny C V; Svedese, Virgínia M; Silva-Nogueira, Eliane B; Gomes, Bruno S; Paiva, Laura M; Souza-Motta, Cristina M

    2015-03-01

    Bauhinia forficata is native to South America and used with relative success in the folk medicine in Brazil. The diversity, antibacterial activity, and extracellular hydrolytic enzymes of endophytic fungi associated with this plant were studied. Plant samples, which included leaves, sepals, stems, and seeds, were used. Ninety-five endophytic fungal were isolated (18 from leaves, 22 from sepals, 46 from stems, and nine from seeds), comprising 28 species. The most frequently isolated species were Acremonium curvulum (9.5%), Aspergillus ochraceus (7.37%), Gibberella fujikuroi (10.53%), Myrothecium verrucaria (10.53%) and Trichoderma piluliferum (7.37%). Diversity and species richness were higher in stem tissues, and Sorensen's index of similarity between the tissues was low. Eleven fungi showed antibacterial activity. Aspergillus ochraceus , Gibberella baccata , Penicillium commune , and P. glabrum were those with the greatest antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and/or Streptococcus pyogenes . Thirteen species showed proteolytic activity, particularly Phoma putaminum . Fourteen species were cellulase positive, particularly the Penicillium species and Myrmecridium schulzeri . All isolates tested were xylanase positive and 10 showed lipolytic activity, especially Penicillium glabrum . It is clear that the endophytic fungi from B. forficata have potential for the production of bioactive compounds and may be a source of new therapeutic agents for the effective treatment of diseases in humans, other animals, and plants. To our knowledge, this is the first study of endophytic fungi from different tissues of B. forficata and their biotechnological potential.

  15. Endophytic fungi from medicinal plant Bauhinia forficata: Diversity and biotechnological potential

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jadson D.P. Bezerra

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Bauhinia forficata is native to South America and used with relative success in the folk medicine in Brazil. The diversity, antibacterial activity, and extracellular hydrolytic enzymes of endophytic fungi associated with this plant were studied. Plant samples, which included leaves, sepals, stems, and seeds, were used. Ninety-five endophytic fungal were isolated (18 from leaves, 22 from sepals, 46 from stems, and nine from seeds, comprising 28 species. The most frequently isolated species were Acremonium curvulum (9.5%, Aspergillus ochraceus (7.37%, Gibberella fujikuroi (10.53%, Myrothecium verrucaria (10.53% and Trichoderma piluliferum(7.37%. Diversity and species richness were higher in stem tissues, and Sorensen’s index of similarity between the tissues was low. Eleven fungi showed antibacterial activity. Aspergillus ochraceus, Gibberella baccata, Penicillium commune, and P. glabrum were those with the greatest antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus and/or Streptococcus pyogenes. Thirteen species showed proteolytic activity, particularly Phoma putaminum. Fourteen species were cellulase positive, particularly the Penicillium species and Myrmecridium schulzeri. All isolates tested were xylanase positive and 10 showed lipolytic activity, especially Penicillium glabrum. It is clear that the endophytic fungi from B. forficata have potential for the production of bioactive compounds and may be a source of new therapeutic agents for the effective treatment of diseases in humans, other animals, and plants. To our knowledge, this is the first study of endophytic fungi from different tissues of B. forficata and their biotechnological potential.

  16. Diversity of maize shoot apical meristem architecture and its relationship to plant morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-03-05

    The shoot apical meristem contains a pool of undifferentiated stem cells and controls initiation of all aerial plant organs. In maize (Zea mays), leaves are formed throughout vegetative development; on transition to floral development, the shoot meristem forms the tassel. Due to the regulated balance between stem cell maintenance and organogenesis, the structure and morphology of the shoot meristem are constrained during vegetative development. Previous work identified loci controlling meristem architecture in a recombinant inbred line population. The study presented here expanded on this by investigating shoot apical meristem morphology across a diverse set of maize inbred lines. Crosses of these lines to common parents showed varying phenotypic expression in the F1, with some form of heterosis occasionally observed. An investigation of meristematic growth throughout vegetative development in diverse lines linked the timing of reproductive transition to flowering time. Phenotypic correlations of meristem morphology with adult plant traits showed an association between the meristem and flowering time, leaf shape, and yield traits, revealing links between the control and architecture of undifferentiated and differentiated plant organs. Finally, quantitative trait loci mapping was utilized to map the genetic architecture of these meristem traits in two divergent populations. Control of meristem architecture was mainly population-specific, with 15 total unique loci mapped across the two populations with only one locus identified in both populations. Copyright © 2015 Thompson et al.

  17. Earthworms counterbalance the negative effect of microorganisms on plant diversity and enhance to tolerance of grasses to nematodes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wurst, S.; Allema, A.B.; Duyts, H.; Putten, van der W.H.

    2008-01-01

    Plant community composition is affected by a wide array of soil organisms with diverse feeding modes and functions. Former studies dealt with the high diversity and complexity of soil communities by focusing on particular functional groups in isolation, by grouping soil organisms into body size clas

  18. Earthworms counterbalance the negative effects of microorganisms on plant diversity and enhance the tolerance of grasses to nematodes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wurst, S.; Allema, B.; Duyts, H.; Van der Putten, W.H.

    2008-01-01

    Plant community composition is affected by a wide array of soil organisms with diverse feeding modes and functions. Former studies dealt with the high diversity and complexity of soil communities by focusing on particular functional groups in isolation, by grouping soil organisms into body size

  19. Earthworms counterbalance the negative effects of microorganisms on plant diversity and enhance the tolerance of grasses to nematodes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wurst, S.; Allema, B.; Duyts, H.; Van der Putten, W.H.

    2008-01-01

    Plant community composition is affected by a wide array of soil organisms with diverse feeding modes and functions. Former studies dealt with the high diversity and complexity of soil communities by focusing on particular functional groups in isolation, by grouping soil organisms into body size clas

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1997-01-01

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

  1. Retention of gene diversity during the spread of a non-native plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vandepitte, Katrien; Helsen, Kenny; Van Acker, Kasper; Mergeay, Joachim; Honnay, Olivier

    2017-06-01

    Spatial expansion, which is a crucial stage in the process to successful biological invasion, is anticipated to profoundly affect the magnitude and spatial distribution of genetic diversity in novel colonized areas. Here, we show that, contrasting common expectations, Pyrenean rocket (Sisymbrium austriacum), retained SNP diversity as this introduced plant species descended in the Meuse River Basin. Allele frequencies did not mirror between-population distances along the predominant expansion axis. Reconstruction of invasion history based on the genotypes of historical herbarium specimens indicated no influence of additional introductions or multiple points of entry on this nongradual pattern. Assignment analysis suggested the admixture of distant upstream sources in recently founded downstream populations. River dynamics seem to have facilitated occasional long-distance dispersal which brought diversity to the expansion front and so maintained evolutionary potential. Our findings highlight the merit of a historical framework in interpreting extant patterns of genetic diversity in introduced species and underscore the need to integrate long-distance dispersal events in theoretical work on the genetic consequences of range expansion. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-08-01

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

  3. Agricultural land-use history causes persistent loss of plant phylogenetic diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turley, Nash E; Brudvig, Lars A

    2016-09-01

    Intensive land use activities, such as agriculture, are a leading cause of biodiversity loss and can have lasting impacts on ecological systems. Yet, few studies have investigated how land-use legacies impact phylogenetic diversity (the total amount of evolutionary history in a community) or how restoration activities might mitigate legacy effects on biodiversity. We studied ground-layer plant communities in 27 pairs of Remnant (no agricultural history) and Post-agricultural (agriculture abandoned >60 yr ago) longleaf pine savannas, half of which we restored by thinning trees to reinstate open savanna conditions. We found that agricultural history had no impact on species richness, but did alter community composition and reduce phylogenetic diversity by 566 million years/1,000 m(2) . This loss of phylogenetic diversity in post-agricultural savannas was due to, in part, a reduction in the average evolutionary distance between pairs of closely related species, that is, increased phylogenetic clustering. Habitat restoration increased species richness by 27% and phylogenetic diversity by 914 million years but did not eliminate the effects of agricultural land use on community composition and phylogenetic structure. These results demonstrate the persistence of agricultural legacies, even in the face of intensive restoration efforts, and the importance of considering biodiversity broadly when evaluating human impacts on ecosystems.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-11-01

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

  5. adaptation et selection de varietes performantes de riz pluvi

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROJET SOJA

    plante (graines, tiges et racines) sont intéressantes pour les protéines (17,5 %) et les ... Le taux en huile essentielle de 2,7 % pour la plante en floraison est ... Les formations végétales sont de type matorral dense sur des sols tantôt jeunes.

  6. Discriminating plant species across California's diverse ecosystems using airborne VSWIR and TIR imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meerdink, S.; Roberts, D. A.; Roth, K. L.

    2015-12-01

    Accurate knowledge of the spatial distribution of plant species is required for many research and management agendas that track ecosystem health. Because of this, there is continuous development of research focused on remotely-sensed species classifications for many diverse ecosystems. While plant species have been mapped using airborne imaging spectroscopy, the geographic extent has been limited due to data availability and spectrally similar species continue to be difficult to separate. The proposed Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI) space-borne mission, which includes a visible near infrared/shortwave infrared (VSWIR) imaging spectrometer and thermal infrared (TIR) multi-spectral imager, would present an opportunity to improve species discrimination over a much broader scale. Here we evaluate: 1) the capability of VSWIR and/or TIR spectra to discriminate plant species; 2) the accuracy of species classifications within an ecosystem; and 3) the potential for discriminating among species across a range of ecosystems. Simulated HyspIRI imagery was acquired in spring/summer of 2013 spanning from Santa Barbara to Bakersfield, CA with the Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) and the MODIS/ASTER Airborne Simulator (MASTER) instruments. Three spectral libraries were created from these images: AVIRIS (224 bands from 0.4 - 2.5 µm), MASTER (8 bands from 7.5 - 12 µm), and AVIRIS + MASTER. We used canonical discriminant analysis (CDA) as a dimension reduction technique and then classified plant species using linear discriminant analysis (LDA). Our results show the inclusion of TIR spectra improved species discrimination, but only for plant species with emissivities departing from that of a gray body. Ecosystems with species that have high spectral contrast had higher classification accuracies. Mapping plant species across all ecosystems resulted in a classification with lower accuracies than a single ecosystem due to the complex nature of

  7. Plant diversity effects on insect herbivores and their natural enemies: current thinking, recent findings, and future directions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Abdala-Roberts, Luis; Rasmann, Sergio; Castagneyrol, Bastien; Mooney, Kailen A

    2016-04-01

    A rich body of theory has been developed to predict the effects of plant diversity on communities at higher trophic levels and the mechanisms underpinning such effects. However, there are currently a number of key gaps in knowledge that have hindered the development of a predictive framework of plant diversity effects on consumers. For instance, we still know very little about how the magnitude of plant trait variation (e.g. intra-specific vs. inter-specific), as well as the identity and combined effects of plant, herbivore and natural enemy traits, mediate plant diversity effects on consumers. Moreover, the fine-scale mechanisms (e.g. changes in consumer behaviour or recruitment responses) underlying such diversity effects in many cases remain elusive or have been overlooked. In addition, most studies of plant diversity effects on associated consumers have been developed under a static, unidirectional (bottom-up) framework of effects on herbivores and predators without taking into account the potential for dynamic feedbacks across trophic levels. Here we seek to address these key gaps in knowledge as well as to capitalize on recent advances and emerging frameworks in plant biodiversity research. In doing so, we provide new insights as well as recommendations which will stimulate new research and advance this field of study.

  8. Effects of experimental nitrogen additions on plant diversity in tropical forests of contrasting disturbance regimes in southern China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lu Xiankai [Key Laboratory of Vegetation Restoration and Management of Degraded Ecosystems, South China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510160 (China); Mo Jiangming, E-mail: mojm@scib.ac.cn [Key Laboratory of Vegetation Restoration and Management of Degraded Ecosystems, South China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510160 (China); Gilliam, Frank S. [Department of Biological Sciences, Marshall University, Huntington, WV 25755-2510 (United States); Yu Guirui [Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101 (China); Zhang Wei; Fang Yunting; Huang Juan [Key Laboratory of Vegetation Restoration and Management of Degraded Ecosystems, South China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510160 (China)

    2011-10-15

    Responses of understory plant diversity to nitrogen (N) additions were investigated in reforested forests of contrasting disturbance regimes in southern China from 2003 to 2008: disturbed forest (with harvesting of understory vegetation and litter) and rehabilitated forest (without harvesting). Experimental additions of N were administered as the following treatments: Control, 50 kg N ha{sup -1} yr{sup -1}, and 100 kg N ha{sup -1} yr{sup -1}. Nitrogen additions did not significantly affect understory plant richness, density, and cover in the disturbed forest. Similarly, no significant response was found for canopy closure in this forest. In the rehabilitated forest, species richness and density showed no significant response to N additions; however, understory cover decreased significantly in the N-treated plots, largely a function of a significant increase in canopy closure. Our results suggest that responses of plant diversity to N deposition may vary with different land-use history, and rehabilitated forests may be more sensitive to N deposition. - Highlights: > Nitrogen addition had no significant effect on understory plant diversity in the disturbed forest. > Nitrogen addition significantly decreased understory plant cover. > Nitrogen addition had no effect on richness and density in the rehabilitated forest. > The decrease is largely a function of a significant increase in canopy closure. > Land-use practices may dominate the responses of plant diversity to N addition. - Research in disturbed forests of southeastern China demonstrates that land-use history can substantially alter effects of excess nitrogen deposition on plant diversity of tropical forest ecosystems.

  9. Effect of Snow-cover Duration on Plant Species Diversity of Alpine Meadows on the Eastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2008-01-01

    Although snow cover plays an important role in structuring plant diversity in the alpine zone, there are few studies on the relationship between snow cover and species diversity of alpine meadows on the eastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. To assess the effect of snow cover on plant species diversity of alpine meadows, we used ten parallel transects of 60 m × 1 m for this study and described the changes in species diversity and composition associated with snow depth. With the division of snow depth into six classes, the highest species richness (S) and species diversity (H') occurred with an intermediate snow depth, i.e., class Ⅲ and class Ⅳ, showing a unimodal curve with the increase in snow depth. The relationship between snow depth and plant diversity (both richness and Shannon index) could be depicted by quadratic equations. There was no evident relationship between diversity (both S and H') and soil water content, which implied that other more important factors influenced species diversity. The patterns of diversity found in our study were largely attributed to freeze-thaw alteration, length of growing season and disturbances of livestock grazing. Furthermore, snow depth affected species composition, as evaluated by the Sorensen's index of similarity. In addition, almost all species limited to one snow depth class were found only in class Ⅲ and class Ⅳ, indicating that intermediate snow depth was suitable for the survival and growth of many alpine species.

  10. Impacts of invasive plants on animal diversity in South Africa: A synthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susana Clusella-Trullas

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Background: Increasing numbers of invasive alien plant (IAP species are establishing around the globe and can have negative effects on resident animal species function and diversity. These impacts depend on a variety of factors, including the extent of invasion, the region and the taxonomic group affected. These context dependencies make extrapolations of IAP impacts on resident biota from region to region a substantial challenge. Objectives: Here, we synthesised data from studies that have examined the effects of IAPs on animal diversity in South Africa. Our focus is on ectothermic organisms (reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates. Method: We sourced relevant articles using keywords relating to (1 the effects of IAPs on species diversity (abundance, richness and composition, (2 the IAP and (3 the native ectotherm. We extracted the taxonomic and spatial coverage of IAPs and affected native species and assessed the extent of information given on potential mechanisms driving IAP impacts. Results: Across the 42 studies, IAPs had a decreasing or neutral effect on native animal abundance and richness and significantly changed species composition. This review highlighted the paucity of studies and the research deficits in taxonomic and geographic coverage and in the mechanisms underlying IAP impacts on ectotherms. Conclusion: By assessing the status of knowledge regarding the impacts of IAPs on resident animal species in South Africa, this study identifies information gaps and research priorities at the country level with a view to informing monitoring and conservation efforts, such as alien plant removal and control programmes, and ensuring that endemic terrestrial animal diversity is maintained.

  11. Mini core germplasm collections for infusing genetic diversity in plant breeding programs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hari D Upadhyaya*, Devvart Yadav, Naresh Dronavalli, CLL Gowda, and Sube Singh

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Plant genetic resources are essential components to meet future food security needs of world. Crop germplasm diversitycontributes to developing improved crop cultivars aimed at increasing crop productivity. The large size of germplasmcollections, coupled with unavailability of detailed data and information, has resulted in low use (<1% of germplasmleading to a narrow genetic base in many crops. The miniaturization of crop collections with almost full representation ofgenetic diversity in the form of mini core (~1% of the entire collection approach is an effective methodology to enrichand enhance crop improvement programs. The concept and process of developing mini core at The International CropsResearch Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT has been recognized worldwide as an “International PublicGood” (IPG. The mini core provides a means for accessing the larger collections for further exploration and also helps inproper assessment of genetic diversity and population structure and for association mapping and targeted gene mining.Use of mini core approach will lead to greater utilization of diverse germplasm for developing broad-based cultivars,especially in the context of climate change. Many national programs have shown immense interest in evaluating minicore as reflected by the supply of 114 sets of mini core of chickpea, groundnut, pigeonpea, sorghum, pearl millet, foxtailmillet and finger millet to researchers in 14 countries. Scientists have been able to identify new and diverse sources ofvariation for morpho-agronomic, quality, biotic, and abiotic stress resistance traits in various crops. The molecularcharacterization of the mini core will further enhance its use in plant breeding programs.

  12. Reasons for an outstanding plant diversity in the tropical Andes of Southern Ecuador

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Richter

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Long-term field studies in the scope of a multidisciplinary project in southern Ecuador revealed extraordinary high species numbers of many organismic groups. This article discusses reasons for the outstanding vascular plant diversity using a hierarchical scale-oriented top-down approach (Grüninger 2005, from the global scale to the local microscale. The global scale explains general (paleo- ecological factors valid for most parts of the humid tropics, addressing various hypotheses and theories, such as the “greater effective evolutionary time”, constant input of “accidentals”, the “seasonal variability hypothesis”, the “intermediate disturbance hypothesis”, and the impact of soil fertility. The macroscale focuses on the Andes in northwestern South America. The tropical Andes are characterised by many taxa of restricted range which is particularly true for the Amotape-Huancabamba region, i.e. the so called Andean Depression, which is effective as discrete phytogeographic transition as well as barrier zone. Interdigitation of northern and southern flora elements, habitat fragmentation, geological and landscape history, and a high speciation rate due to rapid genetic radiation of some taxa contribute to a high degree of diversification. The mesoscale deals with the special environmental features of the eastern mountain range, the Cordillera Real and surrounding areas in southern Ecuador. Various climatic characteristics, the orographic heterogeneity, the geologic and edaphic conditions as well as human impact are the most prominent factors augmenting plant species diversity. On microscale, prevailing regimes of disturbance and environmental stresses, the orographic basement, as well as the general role on the various mountain chains are considered. Here, micro-habitats e.g. niches for epiphytes, effects of micro-relief patterns, and successions after small-sized disturbance events are screened. Direct effects of human impact are

  13. Strong paleoclimatic legacies in current plant functional diversity patterns across Europe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ordonez, Alejandro; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2016-05-01

    Numerous studies indicate that environmental changes during the late Quaternary have elicited long-term disequilibria between species diversity and environment. Despite its importance for ecosystem functioning, the importance of historical environmental conditions as determinants of FD (functional diversity) remains largely unstudied. We quantified the geographic distributions of plant FD (richness and dispersion) across Europe using distribution and functional trait information for 2702 plant species. We then compared the importance of historical and contemporary factors to determine the relevance of past conditions as predictors of current plant FD in Europe. For this, we compared the strength of the relationships between FD with temperature and precipitation stability since the LGM (Last Glacial Maximum), accessibility to LGM refugia, and contemporary environmental conditions (climate, productivity, soil, topography, and land use). Functional richness and dispersion exhibited geographic patterns with strong associations to the environmental history of the region. The effect size of accessibility to LGM refugia and climate stability since the LGM was comparable to that of the contemporary predictors. Both functional richness and dispersion increased with temperature stability since the LGM and accessibility to LGM refugia. Functional richness' geographic pattern was primarily associated with accessibility to LGM refugia growing degree-days, land use heterogeneity, diversity of soil types, and absolute minimum winter temperature. Functional dispersion's geographic pattern was primarily associated with accessibility to LGM refugia growing degree-days and absolute minimum winter temperature. The high explained variance and model support of historical predictors are consistent with the idea that long-term variability in environmental conditions supplements contemporary factors in shaping FD patterns at continental scales. Given the importance of FD for ecosystem

  14. Genetic and phenotypic diversity of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria isolated from sugarcane plants growing in pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehnaz, Samina; Baig, Deeba Noreen; Lazarovits, George

    2010-12-01

    Bacteria were isolated from roots of sugarcane varieties grown in the fields of Punjab. They were identified by using API20E/NE bacterial identification kits and from sequences of 16S rRNA and amplicons of the cpn60 gene. The majority of bacteria were found to belong to the genera of Enterobacter, Pseudomonas, and Klebsiella, but members of genera Azospirillum, Rhizobium, Rahnella, Delftia, Caulobacter, Pannonibacter, Xanthomonas, and Stenotrophomonas were also found. The community, however, was dominated by members of the Pseudomonadaceae and Enterobacteriaceae, as representatives of these genera were found in samples from every variety and location examined. All isolates were tested for the presence of five enzymes and seven factors known to be associated with plant growth promotion. Ten isolates showed lipase activity and eight were positive for protease activity. Cellulase, chitinase, and pectinase were not detected in any strain. Nine strains showed nitrogen fixing ability (acetylene reduction assay) and 26 were capable of solubilizing phosphate. In the presence of 100 mg/l tryptophan, all strains except one produced indole acetic acid in the growth medium. All isolates were positive for ACC deaminase activity. Six strains produced homoserine lactones and three produced HCN and hexamate type siderophores. One isolate was capable of inhibiting the growth of 24 pathogenic fungal strains of Colletotrichum, Fusarium, Pythium, and Rhizoctonia spp. In tests of their abilities to grow under a range of temperature, pH, and NaCl concentrations, all isolates grew well on plates with 3% NaCl and most of them grew well at 4 to 41degrees C and at pH 11.

  15. Food plant diversity as broad-Scale Determinant of Avian Frugivore Richness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kissling, W. Daniel; Rahbek, Carsten; Böhning-Gaese, Katrin

    2007-01-01

    The causes of variation in animal species richness at large spatial scales are intensively debated. Here, we examine whether the diversity of food plants, contemporary climate and energy, or habitat heterogeneity determine species richness patterns of avian frugivores across sub-Saharan Africa...... from niche assembly mechanisms (e.g. coevolutionary adaptations to fruit size, fruit colour or vertical stratification of fruit presentation) or, alternatively, from stochastic speciation-extinction processes. In any case, the close relationship between species richness of Ficus and avian frugivores...... suggests that figs are keystone resources for animal consumers, even at continental scales....

  16. Woody plant diversity in sacred forests and fallows in Chiang Mai, Thailand

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Junsongduang, A.; Balslev, Henrik; Jampeetong, Arunothai;

    2014-01-01

    ; old fallow, 5-6 years old). All woody plant species were identified and counted in three transects (20 x 40 m) . Seedlings were inventoried in 12 circular (5 m diam.) plots. The highest species richness of all woody species and seedlings were found in the sacred forests in both villages. The highest......All woody plant and seedling diversity was compared in a Karen and a Lawa hill-tribe village in northern Thailand in four different habitats: sacred forests and fallow fields of three ages derived from rotational shifting cultivation (young fallows, 1–2 years old; medium-age fallow, 3-4 years old...... values of the Shannon-Wiener index for both trees and seedlings were in the sacred forest of the Karen village. There were significant differences in species richness between the four studied habitats surrounding both villages (pplant and seedlings species compositions in the sacred...

  17. Can phylogeny predict chemical diversity and potential medicinal activity of plants? A case study of Amaryllidaceae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rønsted, Nina; Symonds, Matthew R. E.; Birkholm, Trine

    2012-01-01

    a predictive approach enabling more efficient selection of plants for the development of traditional medicine and lead discovery. However, this relationship has rarely been rigorously tested and the potential predictive power is consequently unknown. Results: We produced a phylogenetic hypothesis......Background: During evolution, plants and other organisms have developed a diversity of chemical defences, leading to the evolution of various groups of specialized metabolites selected for their endogenous biological function. A correlation between phylogeny and biosynthetic pathways could offer...... of acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and binding to the serotonin reuptake transporter (SERT) are significantly correlated with phylogeny. This has implications for the use of phylogenies to interpret chemical evolution and biosynthetic pathways, to select candidate taxa for lead discovery, and to make recommendations...

  18. Direct anthelmintic effects of condensed tannins from diverse plant sources against Ascaris suum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Williams, Andrew Richard; Fryganas, Christos; Ramsay, Aina

    2014-01-01

    Ascaris suum is one of the most prevalent nematode parasites in pigs and causes significant economic losses, and also serves as a good model for A. lumbricoides, the large roundworm of humans that is ubiquitous in developing countries and causes malnutrition, stunted growth and compromises immunity...... to other pathogens. New treatment options for Ascaris infections are urgently needed, to reduce reliance on the limited number of synthetic anthelmintic drugs. In areas where Ascaris infections are common, ethno-pharmacological practices such as treatment with natural plant extracts are still widely...... employed. However, scientific validation of these practices and identification of the active compounds are lacking, although observed effects are often ascribed to plant secondary metabolites such as tannins. Here, we extracted, purified and characterised a wide range of condensed tannins from diverse...

  19. Experience matters: prior exposure to plant toxins enhances diversity of gut microbes in herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D; Dearing, M D

    2012-09-01

    For decades, ecologists have hypothesised that exposure to plant secondary compounds (PSCs) modifies herbivore-associated microbial community composition. This notion has not been critically evaluated in wild mammalian herbivores on evolutionary timescales. We investigated responses of the microbial communities of two woodrat species (Neotoma bryanti and N. lepida). For each species, we compared experienced populations that independently converged to feed on the same toxic plant (creosote bush, Larrea tridentata) to naïve populations with no exposure to creosote toxins. The addition of dietary PSCs significantly altered gut microbial community structure, and the response was dependent on previous experience. Microbial diversity and relative abundances of several dominant phyla increased in experienced woodrats in response to PSCs; however, opposite effects were observed in naïve woodrats. These differential responses were convergent in experienced populations of both species. We hypothesise that adaptation of the foregut microbiota to creosote PSCs in experienced woodrats drives this differential response.

  20. Galactinol synthase across evolutionary diverse taxa: functional preference for higher plants?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sengupta, Sonali; Mukherjee, Sritama; Parween, Sabiha; Majumder, Arun Lahiri

    2012-05-21

    Galactinol synthase (GolS), a GT8 family glycosyltransferase, synthesizes galactinol and raffinose series of oligosaccharides (RFOs). Identification and analysis of conserved domains in GTs among evolutionarily diverse taxa, structure prediction by homology modeling and determination of substrate binding pocket followed by phylogenetic analysis of GolS sequences establish presence of functional GolS predominantly in higher plants, fungi having the closest possible ancestral sequences. Evolutionary preference for a functional GolS expression in higher plants might have arisen in response to the need for galactinol and RFO synthesis to combat abiotic stress, in contrast to other organisms lacking functional GolS for such functions. Copyright © 2012 Federation of European Biochemical Societies. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Native wildflower plantings support wild bee abundance and diversity in agricultural landscapes across the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Neal M; Ward, Kimiora L; Pope, Nathaniel; Isaacs, Rufus; Wilson, Julianna; May, Emily A; Ellis, Jamie; Daniels, Jaret; Pence, Akers; Ullmann, Katharina; Peters, Jeff

    2015-12-01

    Global trends in pollinator-dependent crops have raised awareness of the need to support managed and wild bee populations to ensure sustainable crop production. Provision of sufficient forage resources is a key element for promoting bee populations within human impacted landscapes, particularly those in agricultural lands where demand for pollination service is high and land use and management practices have reduced available flowering resources. Recent government incentives in North America and Europe support the planting of wildflowers to benefit pollinators; surprisingly, in North America there has been almost no rigorous testing of the performance of wildflower mixes, or their ability to support wild bee abundance and diversity. We tested different wildflower mixes in a spatially replicated, multiyear study in three regions of North America where production of pollinator-dependent crops is high: Florida, Michigan, and California. In each region, we quantified flowering among wildflower mixes composed of annual and perennial species, and with high and low relative diversity. We measured the abundance and species richness of wild bees, honey bees, and syrphid flies at each mix over two seasons. In each region, some but not all wildflower mixes provided significantly greater floral display area than unmanaged weedy control plots. Mixes also attracted greater abundance and richness of wild bees, although the identity of best mixes varied among regions. By partitioning floral display size from mix identity we show the importance of display size for attracting abundant and diverse wild bees. Season-long monitoring also revealed that designing mixes to provide continuous bloom throughout the growing season is critical to supporting the greatest pollinator species richness. Contrary to expectation, perennials bloomed in their first season, and complementarity in attraction of pollinators among annuals and perennials suggests that inclusion of functionally diverse

  2. Medicinal, Aromatic and Cosmetic (MAC) plants for community health and bio-cultural diversity conservation in Bali, Indonesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leurs, Liesbeth Nathalie

    2010-01-01

    The general aim of this ethno-botanical study is to document, describe and analyse the Balinese community members’ knowledge, belief and practices with regard to medicinal, aromatic and cosmetic (MAC) plants in relation to community health and bio-cultural diversity conservation of MAC plants. This

  3. Evaluating methods for isolating total RNA and predicting the success of sequencing phylogenetically diverse plant transcriptomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Marc T J; Carpenter, Eric J; Tian, Zhijian; Bruskiewich, Richard; Burris, Jason N; Carrigan, Charlotte T; Chase, Mark W; Clarke, Neil D; Covshoff, Sarah; Depamphilis, Claude W; Edger, Patrick P; Goh, Falicia; Graham, Sean; Greiner, Stephan; Hibberd, Julian M; Jordon-Thaden, Ingrid; Kutchan, Toni M; Leebens-Mack, James; Melkonian, Michael; Miles, Nicholas; Myburg, Henrietta; Patterson, Jordan; Pires, J Chris; Ralph, Paula; Rolf, Megan; Sage, Rowan F; Soltis, Douglas; Soltis, Pamela; Stevenson, Dennis; Stewart, C Neal; Surek, Barbara; Thomsen, Christina J M; Villarreal, Juan Carlos; Wu, Xiaolei; Zhang, Yong; Deyholos, Michael K; Wong, Gane Ka-Shu

    2012-01-01

    Next-generation sequencing plays a central role in the characterization and quantification of transcriptomes. Although numerous metrics are purported to quantify the quality of RNA, there have been no large-scale empirical evaluations of the major determinants of sequencing success. We used a combination of existing and newly developed methods to isolate total RNA from 1115 samples from 695 plant species in 324 families, which represents >900 million years of phylogenetic diversity from green algae through flowering plants, including many plants of economic importance. We then sequenced 629 of these samples on Illumina GAIIx and HiSeq platforms and performed a large comparative analysis to identify predictors of RNA quality and the diversity of putative genes (scaffolds) expressed within samples. Tissue types (e.g., leaf vs. flower) varied in RNA quality, sequencing depth and the number of scaffolds. Tissue age also influenced RNA quality but not the number of scaffolds ≥ 1000 bp. Overall, 36% of the variation in the number of scaffolds was explained by metrics of RNA integrity (RIN score), RNA purity (OD 260/230), sequencing platform (GAIIx vs HiSeq) and the amount of total RNA used for sequencing. However, our results show that the most commonly used measures of RNA quality (e.g., RIN) are weak predictors of the number of scaffolds because Illumina sequencing is robust to variation in RNA quality. These results provide novel insight into the methods that are most important in isolating high quality RNA for sequencing and assembling plant transcriptomes. The methods and recommendations provided here could increase the efficiency and decrease the cost of RNA sequencing for individual labs and genome centers.

  4. Evaluating methods for isolating total RNA and predicting the success of sequencing phylogenetically diverse plant transcriptomes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc T J Johnson

    Full Text Available Next-generation sequencing plays a central role in the characterization and quantification of transcriptomes. Although numerous metrics are purported to quantify the quality of RNA, there have been no large-scale empirical evaluations of the major determinants of sequencing success. We used a combination of existing and newly developed methods to isolate total RNA from 1115 samples from 695 plant species in 324 families, which represents >900 million years of phylogenetic diversity from green algae through flowering plants, including many plants of economic importance. We then sequenced 629 of these samples on Illumina GAIIx and HiSeq platforms and performed a large comparative analysis to identify predictors of RNA quality and the diversity of putative genes (scaffolds expressed within samples. Tissue types (e.g., leaf vs. flower varied in RNA quality, sequencing depth and the number of scaffolds. Tissue age also influenced RNA quality but not the number of scaffolds ≥ 1000 bp. Overall, 36% of the variation in the number of scaffolds was explained by metrics of RNA integrity (RIN score, RNA purity (OD 260/230, sequencing platform (GAIIx vs HiSeq and the amount of total RNA used for sequencing. However, our results show that the most commonly used measures of RNA quality (e.g., RIN are weak predictors of the number of scaffolds because Illumina sequencing is robust to variation in RNA quality. These results provide novel insight into the methods that are most important in isolating high quality RNA for sequencing and assembling plant transcriptomes. The methods and recommendations provided here could increase the efficiency and decrease the cost of RNA sequencing for individual labs and genome centers.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-08-01

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

  6. Monotropa uniflora plants of eastern Massachusetts form mycorrhizae with a diversity of russulacean fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, S; Pfister, D H

    2006-01-01

    Plant species in the subfamily Monotropoideae are mycoheterotrophs; they obtain fixed carbon from photosynthetic plants via a shared mycorrhizal network. Previous findings show mycoheterotrophic plants exhibit a high level of specificity to their mycorrhizal fungi. In this study we explore the association of mycorrhizal fungi and Monotropa uniflora (Monotropoideae: Ericaceae) in eastern North America. We collected M. uniflora roots and nearby basidiomycete sporocarps from four sites within a 100 km2 area in eastern Massachusetts. We analyzed DNA sequences of the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) from the fungal nuclear ribosomal gene to assess the genetic diversity of fungi associating with M. uniflora roots. In this analysis we included 20 ITS sequences from Russula sporocarps collected nearby, 44 sequences of Russula or Lactarius species from GenBank and 12 GenBank sequences of fungi isolated from M. uniflora roots in previous studies. We found that all 56 sampled M. uniflora mycorrhizal fungi were members of the Russulaceae, confirming previous research. The analysis showed that most of the diversity of mycorrhizal fungi spreads across the genus Russula. ITS sequences of the mycorrhizal fungi consisted of 20 different phylotypes: 18 of the genus Russula and two of Lactarius, based on GenBank searches. Of the sampled plants, 57% associated with only three of the 20 mycorrhizal fungi detected in roots, and of the 25 sporocarp phylotypes collected three, were associated with M. uniflora. Furthermore the results indicate that the number of different fungal phylotypes associating with M. uniflora of eastern North America is higher than that of western North America but patterns of fungal species abundance might be similar between mycorrhizae from the two locations.

  7. Monitoring and Varietal Screening Cucurbit Fruit Fly, Bactrocera cucurbitae Coquillett (Diptera: Tephritidae on Cucumber in Bhaktapur and Kathmandu, Nepal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranju Maharjan

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Monitoring of cucurbit fruit fly by using four different types of traps was conducted in Sipadole VDC of Bhaktapur district during 2012 to observe the population dynamics. Three different types of fruit flies were recorded, in which the number of B. cucurbitae dominated to other species. Only B. cucurbitae damaged the cucumber, which was trapped 92.68%, 87.05%, 90.61%, and 69.38% in cue-lure, banana pulp bait, sticky traps and fly catcher, respectively. The highest number of fruit flies (167.5 male fruit flies/3traps was recorded in cue-lure trap during the first week of September, which coincided with 85.45% RH and 21.67°C and 25.04°C minimum and maximum temperature, respectively. Positive relation of temperature, relative humidity and fruit fly catches was observed. Thus, cue-lure was the most effective traps for monitoring of fruit fly population. In varietal screening, among the six different varieties of cucumber, i.e. Kathmandu local, Kusle, Kamini, Malini, Kasinda and Mahyco Green Long, they were highly significant difference in yield. Kamini gave the highest marketable fruit 26.66 mt/ha yield and the lowest by Kusle (5.05 mt/ha. All the varieties were affected by cucurbit fruit fly. The highest number of unmarketable fruit set was observed in Kamini (22.29 fruits/plant.

  8. Genetic diversity among wild and cultivated barley as revealed by RFLP

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, L.; Østergård, H.; Giese, H.

    1994-01-01

    Genetic variability of cultivated and wild barley, Hordeum vulgare ssp. vulgare and spontaneum, respectively, was assessed by RFLP analysis. The material consisted of 13 European varietes, single-plant offspring lines of eight land races from Ethiopia and Nepal, and five accessions of ssp....... spontaneum from Israel, Iran and Turkey. Seventeen out of twenty-one studied cDNA and gDNA probes distributed across all seven barley chromosomes revealed polymorphism when DNA was digested with one of four restriction enzymes. A tree based on genetic distances using frequencies of RFLP banding patterns...... an intermediate level. The proportion of gene diversity residing among,geographical groups (F-ST) varied from 0.19 to 0.94 (average 0.54) per RFLP pattern, indicating large diversification between geographical groups....

  9. MOLECULAR MARKER STUDIES OF SELECTED MEDICINAL PLANTS FOR ASSESSMENT OF GENETIC DIVERSITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. RAJALAKSHMI

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Objective: The aim of this study is to examine the total antioxidant activity and Genetic relationships between six different medicinal plants were analysed. Method: The total antioxidant were analysed by using DPPH Photometric assay. The genomic DNA and RAPD Work were analyzed in selected medicinal plan using standard method. Mathwork software was used to draw the dendogram. Result: The results observed in the present study are Out of the 5 selected plants showed high antioxidant activity followed by Clitoria ternatea blue leaves, Solanum nigrum blue Berries, Syzygium cumini, Clitoria ternatea white leaves, Solanum nigrum Red berries, Phyllanthus emblica. The Syzygium cumini has the maximum antioxidant property this was confirmed by using DPPH photometric assay Figue 1. Isolation of genomic DNA from six different selected medicinal plants by using Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA (RAPD markers and analyse its genetic diversity. A dendrogram was constructed using Euclidean distance methods. Based on the number of bands the medicinal plants were grouped to form1-4 clusters. Conclusion: To analyse it evolutionary process.

  10. Urban agriculture in Santarém, Pará, Brazil: diversity and circulation of cultivated plants in urban homegardens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoinette WinklerPrins

    Full Text Available Urban agriculture, including urban homegardens, is vital for urban survival of many people in various cities around the world, including those in the Amazon region of Brazil. These spaces, through daily praxis, become important for incidental agrodiversity conservation as food plants are cultivated and their plant material circulated. Utilizing data from a year-long intensive qualitative study of 25 rural-urban migrant households, this article considers the diversity of plant material in urban homegardens in the Amazonian city of Santarém, Pará, Brazil. The purpose of the study was to understand the social systems that maintain cultivated plant diversity in homegardens. Our objectives in this article are twofold: a to demonstrate that plant agrodiversity in homegardens persists in a setting which is located 'at the market'; and b to document the ways in which flows of plant material help maintain this agrodiversity.

  11. Impact factors identification of spatial heterogeneity of herbaceous plant diversity on five southern islands of Miaodao Archipelago in North China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chi, Yuan; Shi, Honghua; Wang, Xiaoli; Qin, Xuebo; Zheng, Wei; Peng, Shitao

    2016-09-01

    Herbaceous plants are widely distributed on islands and where they exhibit spatial heterogeneity. Accurately identifying the impact factors that drive spatial heterogeneity can reveal typical island biodiversity patterns. Five southern islands in the Miaodao Archipelago, North China were studied herein. The spatial distribution of herbaceous plant diversity on these islands was analyzed, and the impact factors and their degree of impact on spatial heterogeneity were identified using CCA ordination and ANOVA. The results reveal 114 herbaceous plant species, belonging to 94 genera from 34 families in the 50 plots sampled. The total species numbers on different islands were significantly positively correlated with island area, and the average α diversity was correlated with human activities, while the β diversity among islands was more affected by island area than mutual distances. Spatial heterogeneity within islands indicated that the diversities were generally high in areas with higher altitude, slope, total nitrogen, total carbon, and canopy density, and lower moisture content, pH, total phosphorus, total potassium, and aspect. Among the environmental factors, pH, canopy density, total K, total P, moisture content, altitude, and slope had significant gross effects, but only canopy density exhibited a significant net effect. Terrain affected diversity by restricting plantation, plantation in turn influenced soil properties and the two together affected diversity. Therefore, plantation was ultimately the fundamental driving factor for spatial heterogeneity in herbaceous plant diversity on the five islands.

  12. Plant species diversity and dynamics in forests invaded by Moso bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis in Tianmu Mountain Nature Reserve

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    Shangbin Bai

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Moso bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis is an economically important plant, widely cultivated not only for its delicious shoots and versatile culms, but also as an important biomass resource in southern China.However, with its robust growth and strong rhizomes, it has recently been shown to be a problem tree, capable of dominating some forest stands. Indeed, it may displace species within the community it invades with considerable potential impacts. However, little is known about the consequences of its invasion on plant community composition. We compared plant biodiversity change in different communities where we monitored and removed bamboo over a seven years period (2005 to 2011 in Tianmu Mountain Nature Reserve, so as to elucidate the impacts of Moso bamboo invasion. The results showed that Moso bamboo invasion had negative effects on plant communities. Simpson’s Diversity Index in tree and shrub layers of bamboo forest was lower than that of forests consisting of needle and broad-leaved species, and also those containing a mixture of bamboo with needle and broad-leaved plants. However, Simpson’s Diversity Index in the herb layer of bamboo forest was higher than that in the two other forest types. Plant species richness, Simpson’s Diversity Index, and Pielou’s Eveness Index varied greatly among the different forest types over time. In the tree and shrub layers of forests containing bamboo growing with both needle and broad-leaved species, these three indices declined significantly over the monitoring period (P0.05. Plant species richness increased in the herb layer of forests containing bamboo mixed with needle and broad-leaved species, while Simpson’s Diversity Index and Pielou’s Eveness Index did not change greatly over time. The removal of Moso bamboo resulted in an increase in plant species richness and Simpson’s Diversity Index in the tree and shrub layers. In contrast, plant species richness, Simpson’s Diversity Index, and

  13. Computation of surface electrical potentials of plant cell membranes . Correspondence To published zeta potentials from diverse plant sources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kinraide; Yermiyahu; Rytwo

    1998-10-01

    A Gouy-Chapman-Stern model has been developed for the computation of surface electrical potential (psi0) of plant cell membranes in response to ionic solutes. The present model is a modification of an earlier version developed to compute the sorption of ions by wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cv Scout 66) root plasma membranes. A single set of model parameters generates values for psi0 that correlate highly with published zeta potentials of protoplasts and plasma membrane vesicles from diverse plant sources. The model assumes ion binding to a negatively charged site (R- = 0.3074 &mgr;mol m-2) and to a neutral site (P0 = 2.4 &mgr;mol m-2) according to the reactions R- + IZ &rlharr; RIZ-1 and P0 + IZ &rlharr; PIZ, where IZ represents an ion of charge Z. Binding constants for the negative site are 21, 500 M-1 for H+, 20,000 M-1 for Al3+, 2,200 M-1 for La3+, 30 M-1 for Ca2+ and Mg2+, and 1 M-1 for Na+ and K+. Binding constants for the neutral site are 1/180 the value for binding to the negative site. Ion activities at the membrane surface, computed on the basis of psi0, appear to determine many aspects of plant-mineral interactions, including mineral nutrition and the induction and alleviation of mineral toxicities, according to previous and ongoing studies. A computer program with instructions for the computation of psi0, ion binding, ion concentrations, and ion activities at membrane surfaces may be requested from the authors.

  14. Canopy gap edge determination and the importance of gap edges for plant diversity

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    D. Salvador-Van Eysenrode

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Canopy gaps, i.e. openings in the forest cover caused by the fall of structural elements, are considered to be important for the maintenance of diversity and for the forest cycle. A gap can be considered as a young forest patch in the forest matrix, composed of interior surrounded by an edge, both enclosed by a perimeter. Much of the attention has been focused on the gap interior. However, at gap edges the spectrum of regeneration opportunities for plants may be larger than in the interior. Although definitions of gap are still discussed, any definition can describe it in an acceptable way, if justified, but defining edges is complicated and appropriate descriptors should be used. A method to determine gap interior and edge, using light as a descriptor, is presented with an example of gaps from a beech forest (Fagus sylvatica in Belgium. Also, the relevance and implications of gap edges for plant diversity and calculation of forest turnover is discussed.

  15. Soil erosion control, plant diversity, and arthropod communities under heterogeneous cover crops in an olive orchard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez, José Alfonso; Campos, Mercedes; Guzmán, Gema; Castillo-Llanque, Franco; Vanwalleghem, Tom; Lora, Ángel; Giráldez, Juan V

    2017-01-30

    A 3-year experiment compared in an olive orchard the effect of different cover crops' composition on runoff, water erosion, diversity of annual plants, and arthropod communities which could provide an alternative to conventional management based on tillage (CT). The cover crops evaluated were a seeded homogeneous grass (GC), a seeded mix of ten different species (MCseeded), and a non-seeded cover by vegetation naturally present at the farm after 20 years of mowing (MCnatural). The results suggest that heterogeneous cover crops can provide a viable alternative to homogeneous ones in olives, providing similar benefits in reducing runoff and soil losses compared to management based on bare soil. The reduction in soil loss was particularly large: 46.7 in CT to 6.5 and 7.9 t ha(-1) year(-1) in GC and MCseeded, respectively. The heterogeneous cover crops resulted in greater diversity of plant species and a modification of the arthropod communities with an increased number of predators for pests. The reduction of the cost of implanting heterogeneous cover crops, improvement of the seeding techniques, and selection of species included in the mixes require additional research to promote the use of this practice which can deliver enhanced environmental benefits.

  16. Diversity and taxonomy of endophytic xylariaceous fungi from medicinal plants of Dendrobium (Orchidaceae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Chen

    Full Text Available Dendrobium spp. are traditional Chinese medicinal plants, and the main effective ingredients (polysaccharides and alkaloids have pharmacologic effects on gastritis infection, cancer, and anti-aging. Previously, we confirmed endophytic xylariaceous fungi as the dominant fungi in several Dendrobium species of tropical regions from China. In the present study, the diversity, taxonomy, and distribution of culturable endophytic xylariaceous fungi associated with seven medicinal species of Dendrobium (Orchidaceae were investigated. Among the 961 endophytes newly isolated, 217 xylariaceous fungi (morphotaxa were identified using morphological and molecular methods. The phylogenetic tree constructed using nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS, large subunit of ribosomal DNA (LSU, and beta-tubulin sequences divided these anamorphic xylariaceous isolates into at least 18 operational taxonomic units (OTUs. The diversity of the endophytic xylariaceous fungi in these seven Dendrobium species was estimated using Shannon and evenness indices, with the results indicating that the dominant Xylariaceae taxa in each Dendrobium species were greatly different, though common xylariaceous fungi were found in several Dendrobium species. These findings implied that different host plants in the same habitats exhibit a preference and selectivity for their fungal partners. Using culture-dependent approaches, these xylariaceous isolates may be important sources for the future screening of new natural products and drug discovery.

  17. Diverse Lifestyles and Strategies of Plant Pathogenesis Encoded in the Genomes of Eighteen Dothideomycetes Fungi

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ohm, Robin A.; Feau, Nicolas; Henrissat, Bernard; Schoch, Conrad L.; Horwitz, Benjamin A.; Barry, Kerrie W.; Condon, Bradford J.; Copeland, Alex C.; Dhillon, Braham; Glaser, Fabian; Hesse, Cedar N.; Kosti, Idit; LaButti, Kurt; Lindquist, Erika A.; Lucas, Susan; Salamov, Asaf A.; Bradshaw, Rosie E.; Ciuffetti, Lynda; Hamelin, Richard C.; Kema, Gert H. J.; Lawrence, Christopher; Scott, James A.; Spatafora, Joseph W.; Turgeon, B. Gillian; Wit, Pierre J. G. M. de; Zhong, Shaobin; Goodwin, Stephen B.; Grigoriev, Igor V.

    2012-02-29

    The class Dothideomycetes is one of the largest groups of fungi with a high level of ecological diversity including many plant pathogens infecting a broad range of hosts. Here, we compare genome features of 18 members of this class, including 6 necrotrophs, 9 (hemi)biotrophs and 3 saprotrophs, to analyze genome structure, evolution, and the diverse strategies of pathogenesis. The Dothideomycetes most likely evolved from a common ancestor more than 280 million years ago. The 18 genome sequences differ dramatically in size due to variation in repetitive content, but show much less variation in number of (core) genes. Gene order appears to have been rearranged mostly within chromosomal boundaries by multiple inversions, in extant genomes frequently demarcated by adjacent simple repeats. Several Dothideomycetes contain one or more gene-poor, transposable element (TE)-rich putatively dispensable chromosomes of unknown function. The 18 Dothideomycetes offer an extensive catalogue of genes involved in cellulose degradation, proteolysis, secondary metabolism, and cysteine-rich small secreted proteins. Ancestors of the two major orders of plant pathogens in the Dothideomycetes, the Capnodiales and Pleosporales, may have had different modes of pathogenesis, with the former having fewer of these genes than the latter. Many of these genes are enriched in proximity to transposable elements, suggesting faster evolution because of the effects of repeat induced point (RIP) mutations. A syntenic block of genes, including oxidoreductases, is conserved in most Dothideomycetes and upregulated during infection in L. maculans, suggesting a possible function in response to oxidative stress.

  18. Diversity and taxonomy of endophytic xylariaceous fungi from medicinal plants of Dendrobium (Orchidaceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Juan; Zhang, Li-Chun; Xing, Yong-Mei; Wang, Yun-Qiang; Xing, Xiao-Ke; Zhang, Da-Wei; Liang, Han-Qiao; Guo, Shun-Xing

    2013-01-01

    Dendrobium spp. are traditional Chinese medicinal plants, and the main effective ingredients (polysaccharides and alkaloids) have pharmacologic effects on gastritis infection, cancer, and anti-aging. Previously, we confirmed endophytic xylariaceous fungi as the dominant fungi in several Dendrobium species of tropical regions from China. In the present study, the diversity, taxonomy, and distribution of culturable endophytic xylariaceous fungi associated with seven medicinal species of Dendrobium (Orchidaceae) were investigated. Among the 961 endophytes newly isolated, 217 xylariaceous fungi (morphotaxa) were identified using morphological and molecular methods. The phylogenetic tree constructed using nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS), large subunit of ribosomal DNA (LSU), and beta-tubulin sequences divided these anamorphic xylariaceous isolates into at least 18 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). The diversity of the endophytic xylariaceous fungi in these seven Dendrobium species was estimated using Shannon and evenness indices, with the results indicating that the dominant Xylariaceae taxa in each Dendrobium species were greatly different, though common xylariaceous fungi were found in several Dendrobium species. These findings implied that different host plants in the same habitats exhibit a preference and selectivity for their fungal partners. Using culture-dependent approaches, these xylariaceous isolates may be important sources for the future screening of new natural products and drug discovery.

  19. Diverse lifestyles and strategies of plant pathogenesis encoded in the genomes of eighteen Dothideomycetes fungi.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin A Ohm

    Full Text Available The class Dothideomycetes is one of the largest groups of fungi with a high level of ecological diversity including many plant pathogens infecting a broad range of hosts. Here, we compare genome features of 18 members of this class, including 6 necrotrophs, 9 (hemibiotrophs and 3 saprotrophs, to analyze genome structure, evolution, and the diverse strategies of pathogenesis. The Dothideomycetes most likely evolved from a common ancestor more than 280 million years ago. The 18 genome sequences differ dramatically in size due to variation in repetitive content, but show much less variation in number of (core genes. Gene order appears to have been rearranged mostly within chromosomal boundaries by multiple inversions, in extant genomes frequently demarcated by adjacent simple repeats. Several Dothideomycetes contain one or more gene-poor, transposable element (TE-rich putatively dispensable chromosomes of unknown function. The 18 Dothideomycetes offer an extensive catalogue of genes involved in cellulose degradation, proteolysis, secondary metabolism, and cysteine-rich small secreted proteins. Ancestors of the two major orders of plant pathogens in the Dothideomycetes, the Capnodiales and Pleosporales, may have had different modes of pathogenesis, with the former having fewer of these genes than the latter. Many of these genes are enriched in proximity to transposable elements, suggesting faster evolution because of the effects of repeat induced point (RIP mutations. A syntenic block of genes, including oxidoreductases, is conserved in most Dothideomycetes and upregulated during infection in L. maculans, suggesting a possible function in response to oxidative stress.

  20. Metabolic activity and genetic diversity of microbial communities inhabiting the rhizosphere of halophyton plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bárány, Agnes; Szili-Kovács, Tibor; Krett, Gergely; Füzy, Anna; Márialigeti, Károly; Borsodi, Andrea K

    2014-09-01

    A preliminary study was conducted to compare the community level physiological profile (CLPP) and genetic diversity of rhizosphere microbial communities of four plant species growing nearby Kiskunság soda ponds, namely Böddi-szék, Kelemen-szék and Zab-szék. CLPP was assessed by MicroResp method using 15 different substrates while Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE) was used to analyse genetic diversity of bacterial communities. The soil physical and chemical properties were quite different at the three sampling sites. Multivariate statistics (PCA and UPGMA) revealed that Zab-szék samples could be separated according to their genetic profile from the two others which might be attributed to the geographical location and perhaps the differences in soil physical properties. Böddi-szék samples could be separated from the two others considering the metabolic activity which could be explained by their high salt and low humus contents. The number of bands in DGGE gels was related to the metabolic activity, and positively correlated with soil humus content, but negatively with soil salt content. The main finding was that geographical location, soil physical and chemical properties and the type of vegetation were all important factors influencing the metabolic activity and genetic diversity of rhizosphere microbial communities.

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jiaojun ZHU; Zhihong MAO; Caihong ZHANG; Qiaoling YAN; Zugen LIU

    2008-01-01

    The effects of thinning on plant species diversity and composition of understory herbs in a larch plantation were investigated. The relationships between plant species diversity and composition of understory herbs and light conditions were established. Twenty-five 1 m × 1 m plots and fifteen 13 m × 1 m transects were set up in unthinned and thinned stands, respectively. All the transects in the thinned stands were set across the thinned rows and unthinned rows, and each of them was divided into nine 1 m × 1 m sub-plots. The herb diversity and light condi-tions were observed in each plot and sub-plot. The results show that there was a significant difference in herb diversity between the thinned and unthinned stands. All biodiversity indices except for evenness index in the thinned stand were higher than those of the unthinned stand, i.e., the herb diversity increased after thinning. According to the changes in herb densities and whether one species could be found in a stand or not before and after thinning, all herb species were classed into three types: positive, neutral and negative species, which referred to a species newly appeared and having an obviously increased density after thinning, with no obvious changes in its appearance and density after thin-ning, and disappeared and having an obviously decreased density after thinning, respectively. Many new species were found in the thinned stand like Corydalis pallida, Prenanthes tatarinowii, Vicia unijuga and Sonchus brachyotus etc. However, most species found in both the thinned and unthinned stands were negative species. In all nine sub-plots, only 11 and 10 species were found in spring and in autumn respectively, accounting for 17.74% and 15.15% of all the species in the thinned stand, respectively. All biodiversity indices were the highest in the center sub-plots and most of them tended to reduce from middle to side sub-plots. There was a close correlation between most of the three types of species and

  2. Nectar-living yeasts of a tropical host plant community: diversity and effects on community-wide floral nectar traits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azucena Canto

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available We characterize the diversity of nectar-living yeasts of a tropical host plant community at different hierarchical sampling levels, measure the associations between yeasts and nectariferous plants, and measure the effect of yeasts on nectar traits. Using a series of hierarchically nested sampling units, we extracted nectar from an assemblage of host plants that were representative of the diversity of life forms, flower shapes, and pollinator types in the tropical area of Yucatan, Mexico. Yeasts were isolated from single nectar samples; their DNA was identified, the yeast cell density was estimated, and the sugar composition and concentration of nectar were quantified using HPLC. In contrast to previous studies from temperate regions, the diversity of nectar-living yeasts in the plant community was characterized by a relatively high number of equally common species with low dominance. Analyses predict highly diverse nectar yeast communities in a relatively narrow range of tropical vegetation, suggesting that the diversity of yeasts will increase as the number of sampling units increases at the level of the species, genera, and botanical families of the hosts. Significant associations between specific yeast species and host plants were also detected; the interaction between yeasts and host plants impacted the effect of yeast cell density on nectar sugars. This study provides an overall picture of the diversity of nectar-living yeasts in tropical host plants and suggests that the key factor that affects the community-wide patterns of nectar traits is not nectar chemistry, but rather the type of yeasts interacting with host plants.

  3. Land cover change and plants diversity in the Sahel: A case study from northern Burkina Faso

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abel Kadeba

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Understanding land cover degradation patterns and the effects of geomorphological units on phytodiversity is important for guiding management decisions and restoration strategies in the Sahelian vulnerables zones. This paper describes land cover degradation by combining Landsat TM image analysis and field data measurements in the Gourouol catchment of the Sahelian zone of Burkina Faso. Erdas Imagine 9.2 and Arc-GIS.10 were applied. The change patterns were obtained by superposing land cover maps for 1992 and 2010. The field data were collected by the mean of inventories according to the Braun-Blanquet phytosociological relevés methods. Plot sizes were 50 m x 20 m for woody species and 10 m x 10 m for herbaceous species. Six land cover types were identified and mapped: cultivated lands, bared lands, lowlands, which all spatially increased; and shrub-steppes, grasslands and water bodies, which all spatially decreased. The dynamic patterns based on the geomorphological units were non-degraded lowlands, stable sand dunes and degraded glacis. High plant diversity was found in lowlands, whereas low diversity occurred in glacis. A significant dissimilarity was observed between communities. The Shannon diversity indices in plant communities were approximately close to ln(species richness. The Pielou indices were close to 1, indicating a species fairly good distribution. Our results showed a variation of land cover over time and the effects of geomorphological units on phytodiversity. Furthermore, this variation helps oppose land degradation in the Sahel.

  4. Ground layer plant species turnover and beta diversity in southern-European old-growth forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Ground layer plant species turnover and beta diversity in southern-European old-growth forests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco Maria Sabatini

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madelaine eBartlett

    2013-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartlett, Madelaine E; Whipple, Clinton J

    2013-10-10

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

  8. The impact of livestock grazing on plant diversity: an analysis across dryland ecosystems and scales in southern Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanke, Wiebke; Böhner, Jürgen; Dreber, Niels; Jürgens, Norbert; Schmiedel, Ute; Wesuls, Dirk; Dengler, Jürgen

    2014-07-01

    A general understanding of grazing effects on plant diversity in drylands is still missing, despite an extensive theoretical background. Cross-biome syntheses are hindered by the fact that the outcomes of disturbance studies are strongly affected by the choice of diversity measures, and the spatial and temporal scales of measurements. The aim of this study is to overcome these weaknesses by applying a wide range of diversity measures to a data set derived from identical sampling in three distinct ecosystems. We analyzed three fence-line contrasts (heavier vs. lighter grazing intensity), representing different degrees of aridity (from arid to semiarid) and precipitation regimes (summer rain vs. winter rain) in southern Africa. We tested the impact of grazing intensity on multiple aspects of plant diversity (species and functional group level, richness and evenness components, alpha and beta diversity, and composition) at two spatial scales, and for both 5-yr means and interannual variability. Heavier grazing reduced total plant cover and substantially altered the species and functional composition at all sites. However, a significant decrease in species alpha diversity was detected at only one of the three sites. By contrast, alpha diversity of plant functional groups responded consistently across ecosystems and scales, with a significant decrease at heavier grazing intensity. The cover-based measures of functional group diversity responded more sensitively and more consistently than functional group richness. Beta diversity of species and functional types increased under heavier grazing, showing that at larger scales, the heterogeneity of the community composition and the functional structure were increased. Heavier grazing mostly increased interannual variability of alpha diversity, while effects on beta diversity and cover were inconsistent. Our results suggest that species diversity alone may not adequately reflect the shifts in vegetation structure that occur

  9. Climate interacts with soil to produce beta diversity in Californian plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez-Going, B M; Harrison, S P; Anacker, B L; Safford, H D

    2013-09-01

    Spatially distinct communities can arise through interactions and feedbacks between abiotic and biotic factors. We suggest that, for plants, patches of infertile soils such as serpentine may support more distinct communities from those in the surrounding non-serpentine matrix in regions where the climate is more productive (i.e., warmer and/or wetter). Where both soil fertility and climatic productivity are high, communities may be dominated by plants with fast-growing functional traits, whereas where either soils or climate impose low productivity, species with stress-tolerant functional traits may predominate. As a result, both species and functional composition may show higher dissimilarity between patch and matrix in productive climates. This pattern may be reinforced by positive feedbacks, in which higher plant growth under favorable climate and soil conditions leads to higher soil fertility, further enhancing plant growth. For 96 pairs of sites across a 200-km latitudinal gradient in California, we found that the species and functional dissimilarities between communities on infertile serpentine and fertile non-serpentine soils were higher in more productive (wetter) regions. Woody species had more stress-tolerant functional traits on serpentine than non-serpentine soil, and as rainfall increased, woody species functional composition changed toward fast-growing traits on non-serpentine, but not on serpentine soils. Soil organic matter increased with rainfall, but only on non-serpentine soils, and the difference in organic matter between soils was positively correlated with plant community dissimilarity. These results illustrate a novel mechanism wherein climatic productivity is associated with higher species, functional, and landscape-level dissimilarity (beta diversity).

  10. Mite diversity on plants of different families found in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Castro, Tatiane M.M.G. de [UNESP, Jaboticabal, SP (Brazil). Faculdade de Ciencias Agrarias e Veterinarias. Dept. de Fitossanidade]. E-mail: tatianemarie@yahoo.com.br; Moraes, Gilberto J. de [Universidade de Sao Paulo (USP), Piracicaba, SP (Brazil). Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALQ). Dept. Entomologia, Fitopatologia e Zoologia Agricola]. E-mail: gjmoraes@esalq.usp.br

    2007-09-15

    This work reports the occurrence of mites predominantly predatory, phytophagous and with varied feeding habits on plants of the Atlantic Forest vegetation type of the State of Sao Paulo. The objective was to estimate the possible role of the Atlantic Forest vegetation as reservoir of these groups of mites which are also found on plants of agricultural importance. Samples were taken from 187 plant species belonging to 73 families in three vegetation types of the Atlantic Forest from February of 2001 to October of 2002. A total of 2,887 mites belonging to 163 morpho-species of 16 families were collected. Mite diversity was high, especially of predatory mites; these corresponded to 1,562 specimens of 92 morpho-species. Within this group, Phytoseiidae comprised 71% of the specimens and 62% of the morpho-species. Phytophagous mites comprised 836 specimens of 36 morpho-species. Within this group, Tenuipalpidae comprised the larger proportion of specimens (61%) whereas Tetranychidae corresponded to the larger proportion of morpho-species (64%). Mites with varied feeding habits corresponded to 491 specimens of 36 morpho-species. In this group, the larger proportion of specimens (52%) consisted of Ascidae and the larger proportion of morpho-species (42%) consisted of Tydeinae (family Tydeidae). High abundance and high morpho-species richness of mites of predominantly predatory, phytophagous and variable feeding habits were observed on 17, five and nine plant species, respectively. The results obtained suggest the importance of plants of the studied vegetation as reservoirs of predatory mites. (author)

  11. The Arabidopsis synaptotagmin SYTA regulates the cell-to-cell movement of diverse plant viruses

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    Asako eUchiyama

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Synaptotagmins are a large gene family in animals that have been extensively characterized due to their role as calcium sensors to regulate synaptic vesicle exocytosis and endocytosis in neurons, and dense core vesicle exocytosis for hormone secretion from neuroendocrine cells. Thought to be exclusive to animals, synaptotagmins have recently been characterized in Arabidopsis thaliana, in which they comprise a five gene family. Using infectivity and leaf-based functional assays, we have shown that Arabidopsis SYTA regulates endocytosis and marks an endosomal vesicle recycling pathway to regulate movement protein-mediated trafficking of the Begomovirus Cabbage leaf curl virus (CaLCuV and the Tobamovirus Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV through plasmodesmata (Lewis and Lazarowitz, 2010. To determine whether SYTA has a central role in regulating the cell-to-cell trafficking of a wider range of diverse plant viruses, we extended our studies here to examine the role of SYTA in the cell-to-cell movement of additional plant viruses that employ different modes of movement, namely the Potyvirus Turnip mosaic virus (TuMV, the Caulimovirus Cauliflower mosaic virus (CaMV and the Tobamovirus Turnip vein clearing virus (TVCV, which in contrast to TMV does efficiently infect Arabidopsis. We found that both TuMV and TVCV systemic infection, and the cell-to-cell trafficking of the their movement proteins, were delayed in the Arabidopsis Col-0 syta-1 knockdown mutant. In contrast, CaMV systemic infection was not inhibited in syta-1. Our studies show that SYTA is a key regulator of plant virus intercellular movement, being necessary for the ability of diverse cell-to-cell movement proteins encoded by Begomoviruses (CaLCuV MP, Tobamoviruses (TVCV and TMV 30K protein and Potyviruses (TuMV P3N-PIPO to alter PD and thereby mediate virus cell-to-cell spread.

  12. Factors affecting plant diversity during post-fire recovery and succession of mediterranean-climate shrublands in California, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keeley, J.E.; Fotheringham, C.J.; Baer-Keeley, M.

    2005-01-01

    Plant community diversity, measured as species richness, is typically highest in the early post-fire years in California shrublands. However, this generalization is overly simplistic and the present study demonstrates that diversity is determined by a complex of temporal and spatial effects. Ninety sites distributed across southern California were studied for 5 years after a series of fires. Characteristics of the disturbance event, in this case fire severity, can alter post-fire diversity, both decreasing and increasing diversity, depending on life form. Spatial variability in resource availability is an important factor explaining patterns of diversity, and there is a complex interaction between landscape features and life form. Temporal variability in resource availability affects diversity, and the diversity peak in the immediate post-fire year (or two) appears to be driven by factors different from subsequent diversity peaks. Early post-fire diversity is influenced by life-history specialization, illustrated by species that spend the bulk of their life cycle as a dormant seed bank, which is then triggered to germinate by fire. Resource fluctuations, precipitation in particular, may be associated with subsequent post-fire diversity peaks. These later peaks in diversity comprise a flora that is compositionally different from the immediate post-fire flora, and their presence may be due to mass effects from population expansion of local populations in adjacent burned areas. ?? 2005 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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

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    Uprety Yadav

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Wild edible plants (WEP provide staple and supplement foods, as well as cash income to local communities, thus favouring food security. However, WEP are largely ignored in land use planning and implementation, economic development, and biodiversity conservation. Moreover, WEP-related traditional knowledge is rapidly eroding. Therefore, we designed this study to fulfill a part of the knowledge gap by providing data on diversity, traditional knowledge, economic potential, and conservation value of WEP from Nepal. Methods The information was collected through focus group discussions and key informant interviews. Percentage of general utility of the plants among the study communities was evaluated using the Chi-square (χ2 test of homogeneity. High priority species were identified after consultation with the local stakeholders followed by scoring based on defined criteria. Pairwise ranking was used to assess ethnoecological knowledge to identify the threats to WEP. Results We documented 81 species belonging to Angiosperms (74, Pteridophytes (5, and Fungi (2. Most of the species were used as fruits (44 species followed by vegetables (36. Almost half of the species (47% were also used for purposes other than food. From the species with market value (37% of the total, 10 were identified as high priority species. Pairwise ranking revealed that WEP are threatened mostly by habitat destruction, land-use change and over-harvesting. Some of these plants are crop wild relatives and could thus be used for crop improvement. Interestingly, our study also revealed that young people who spend most of the time in the forest as herdsmen are particularly knowledgeable of wild fruit plants. Conclusion We provide empirical evidence from a relatively large area of Nepal about diversity and status of WEP, as well as methodological insights about the proper knowledge holders to consult. Regarding the unique and important knowledge they have on WEP

  14. Diversity and antibiotic resistance of Aeromonas spp. in drinking and waste water treatment plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Figueira, Vânia; Vaz-Moreira, Ivone; Silva, Márcia; Manaia, Célia M

    2011-11-01

    The taxonomic diversity and antibiotic resistance phenotypes of aeromonads were examined in samples from drinking and waste water treatment plants (surface, ground and disinfected water in a drinking water treatment plant, and raw and treated waste water) and tap water. Bacteria identification and intra-species variation were determined based on the analysis of the 16S rRNA, gyrB and cpn60 gene sequences. Resistance phenotypes were determined using the disc diffusion method. Aeromonas veronii prevailed in raw surface water, Aeromonas hydrophyla in ozonated water, and Aeromonas media and Aeromonas puntacta in waste water. No aeromonads were detected in ground water, after the chlorination tank or in tap water. Resistance to ceftazidime or meropenem was detected in isolates from the drinking water treatment plant and waste water isolates were intrinsically resistant to nalidixic acid. Most of the times, quinolone resistance was associated with the gyrA mutation in serine 83. The gene qnrS, but not the genes qnrA, B, C, D or qepA, was detected in both surface and waste water isolates. The gene aac(6')-ib-cr was detected in different waste water strains isolated in the presence of ciprofloxacin. Both quinolone resistance genes were detected only in the species A. media. This is the first study tracking antimicrobial resistance in aeromonads in drinking, tap and waste water and the importance of these bacteria as vectors of resistance in aquatic environments is discussed.

  15. Imprinting in plants as a mechanism to generate seed phenotypic diversity

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    A Mark eSettles

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Normal plant development requires epigenetic regulation to enforce changes in developmental fate. Genomic imprinting is a type of epigenetic regulation in which identical alleles of genes are expressed in a parent-of-origin dependent manner. Deep sequencing of transcriptomes has identified hundreds of imprinted genes with scarce evidence for the developmental importance of individual imprinted loci. Imprinting is regulated through global DNA demethylation in the central cell prior to fertilization and directed repression of individual loci with the Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 (PRC2. There is significant evidence for transposable elements and repeat sequences near genes acting as cis-elements to determine imprinting status of a gene, implying that imprinted gene expression patterns may evolve randomly and at high frequency. Detailed genetic analysis of a few imprinted loci suggests an imprinted pattern of gene expression is often dispensable for seed development. Few genes show conserved imprinted expression within or between plant species. These data are not fully explained by current models for the evolution of imprinting in plant seeds. We suggest that imprinting may have evolved to provide a mechanism for rapid neofunctionalization of genes during seed development to increase phenotypic diversity of seeds.

  16. Early Oligocene plant diversity along the Upper Rhine Graben: The fossil flora of Rauenberg, Germany

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    Kovar-Eder Johanna

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The macroflora of Rauenberg, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, is treated monographically. The plant-bearing sediments are marine, mainly well-bedded clay- to siltstones, the so-called Fischschiefer, which are part of the Bodenheim Formation. Based on nannoplankton they are dated to nannoplankton zone NP 23 (Rupelian, Lower Oligocene. The plant remains, mainly leaves and some fructifications, are preserved as compressions. The taxonomic assignment is based on gross morphology and cuticle characteristics. The flora yields marine algae and remains of the very diverse terrestrial flora. A total of 68 taxa, including three types of algae, one cycad, 12 conifers, and 49 dicots, among them 5 palms, are described. The following fossil species are described for the first time: Laurophyllum rauenbergense, Myrica obliquifolia, Distylium metzleri, ? Berchemia altorhenana, ? Ternstroemites maritiae, Trachelospermum kelleri, Oleinites altorhenana, O. rauenbergensis, Dicotylophyllum badense, D. oechsleri, D. vesiculaeferens, D. ziegleri, ? Viscophyllum hendriksiae, and Cladites vesiculaeferens. Dicotylophyllum vesiculaeferens and Cladites vesiculaeferens bear peculiar, complex cuticular structures presumably representing salt-secreting glands. Both taxa are interpreted to derive from one plant species of yet uncertain systematic affinity. The flora bears a high proportion of broad-leaved, presumably evergreen taxa, whereas the diversity of modern Arcto-Tertiary taxa (sensu Kvaček 1994 is rather low. Most abundant are Platanus neptuni, Daphnogene cinnamomifolia, and Tetraclinis salicornioides. On the family level, Lauraceae (10 species and Pinaceae (8 are most diverse, followed by Arecaceae (4-5, Cupressaceae, and Myricaceae (4 species each. Surprisingly, Fagaceae are documented solely by a single leaf of Eotrigonobalanus furcinervis f. haselbachensis, and the record of Pentaphyllaceae remains ambiguous (? Ternstroemites maritiae. Sloanea olmediaefolia is recorded

  17. How grazing and soil quality affect native and exotic plant diversity in Rocky Mountain grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stohlgren, T.J.; Schell, L.D.; Vanden, Heuvel B.

    1999-01-01

    We used multiscale plots to sample vascular plant diversity and soil characteristics in and adjacent to 26 long-term grazing exclosure sites in Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, and South Dakota, USA. The exclosures were 7-60 yr old (31.2 ?? 2.5 yr, mean ?? 1 SE). Plots were also randomly placed in the broader landscape in open rangeland in the same vegetation type at each site to assess spatial variation in grazed landscapes. Consistent sampling in the nine National Parks, Wildlife Refuges, and other management units yielded data from 78 1000-m2 plots and 780 1-m2 subplots. We hypothesized that native species richness would be lower in the exclosures than in grazed sites, due to competitive exclusion in the absence of grazing. We also hypothesized that grazed sites would have higher native and exotic species richness compared to ungrazed areas, due to disturbance (i.e., the intermediate-disturbance hypothesis) and the conventional wisdom that grazing may accelerate weed invasion. Both hypotheses were soundly rejected. Although native species richness in 1-m2 subplots was significantly higher (P grasses, forbs, and shrubs), soil texture, or soil percentage of N and C between grazed and ungrazed sites at the 1000-m2 plot scale. The species lists of the long-ungrazed and adjacent grazed plots overlapped just 57.9 ?? 2.8%. This difference in species composition is commonly attributed solely to the difference in grazing regimes. However, the species lists between pairs of grazed plots (adjacent and distant 1000-m2 plots) in the same vegetation type overlapped just 48.6 ?? 3.6%, and the ungrazed plots and distant grazed plots overlapped 49.4 ?? 3.6%. Differences in vegetation and soils between grazed and ungrazed sites were minimal in most cases, but soil characteristics and elevation were strongly correlated with native and exotic plant diversity in the study region. For the 78 1000-m2 plots, 59.4% of the variance in total species richness was explained by percentage of silt

  18. Fungal diversity in the rhizosphere of endemic plant species of Tenerife (Canary Islands): relationship to vegetation zones and environmental factors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zachow, Christin; Berg, Christian; Müller, Henry

    2008-01-01

    Knowledge about fungal diversity scaling relationships relative to that of plants is important to understand ecosystem functioning. Tenerife Island, a natural laboratory to study terrestrial biodiversity, is represented by six different vegetation zones characterized by specific abiotic conditions...... and plant communities with a high proportion of endemic plants. Little is known about the biodiversity of associated fungi. To understand the relationship between plant and fungal communities, we analysed soil/rhizosphere fungi from all vegetation zones. From 12 sampling points dispersed on the whole island...

  19. Diversity of bacteria nesting the plant cover of north Sinai deserts, Egypt

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    Amira L. Hanna

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available North Sinai deserts were surveyed for the predominant plant cover and for the culturable bacteria nesting their roots and shoots. Among 43 plant species reported, 13 are perennial (e.g. Fagonia spp., Pancratium spp. and 30 annuals (e.g. Bromus spp., Erodium spp.. Eleven species possessed rhizo-sheath, e.g. Cyperus capitatus, Panicum turgidum and Trisetaria koelerioides. Microbiological analyses demonstrated: the great diversity and richness of associated culturable bacteria, in particular nitrogen-fixing bacteria (diazotrophs; the majority of bacterial residents were of true and/or putative diazotrophic nature; the bacterial populations followed an increasing density gradient towards the root surfaces; sizeable populations were able to reside inside the root (endorhizosphere and shoot (endophyllosphere tissues. Three hundred bacterial isolates were secured from studied spheres. The majority of nitrogen-fixing bacilli isolates belonged to Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus polymexa, Bacillus macerans, Bacillus circulans and Bacillus licheniformis. The family Enterobacteriaceae represented by Enterobacter agglomerans, Enterobacter sackazakii, Enterobacter cloacae, Serratia adorifera, Serratia liquefaciens and Klebsiella oxytoca. The non-Enterobacteriaceae population was rich in Pantoae spp., Agrobacterium rdiobacter, Pseudomonas vesicularis, Pseudomonas putida, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Ochrobactrum anthropi, Sphingomonas paucimobilis and Chrysemonas luteola. Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus were reported inside root and shoot tissues of a number of tested plants. The dense bacterial populations reported speak well to the very possible significant role played by the endophytic bacterial populations in the survival, in respect of nutrition and health, of existing plants. Such groups of diazotrophs are good candidates, as bio-preparates, to support the growth of future field crops grown in deserts of north Sinai and irrigated by the

  20. Diversity of bacteria nesting the plant cover of north Sinai deserts, Egypt.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanna, Amira L; Youssef, Hanan H; Amer, Wafaa M; Monib, Mohammed; Fayez, Mohammed; Hegazi, Nabil A

    2013-01-01

    North Sinai deserts were surveyed for the predominant plant cover and for the culturable bacteria nesting their roots and shoots. Among 43 plant species reported, 13 are perennial (e.g. Fagonia spp., Pancratium spp.) and 30 annuals (e.g. Bromus spp., Erodium spp.). Eleven species possessed rhizo-sheath, e.g. Cyperus capitatus, Panicum turgidum and Trisetaria koelerioides. Microbiological analyses demonstrated: the great diversity and richness of associated culturable bacteria, in particular nitrogen-fixing bacteria (diazotrophs); the majority of bacterial residents were of true and/or putative diazotrophic nature; the bacterial populations followed an increasing density gradient towards the root surfaces; sizeable populations were able to reside inside the root (endorhizosphere) and shoot (endophyllosphere) tissues. Three hundred bacterial isolates were secured from studied spheres. The majority of nitrogen-fixing bacilli isolates belonged to Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus polymexa, Bacillus macerans, Bacillus circulans and Bacillus licheniformis. The family Enterobacteriaceae represented by Enterobacter agglomerans, Enterobacter sackazakii, Enterobacter cloacae, Serratia adorifera, Serratia liquefaciens and Klebsiella oxytoca. The non-Enterobacteriaceae population was rich in Pantoae spp., Agrobacterium rdiobacter, Pseudomonas vesicularis, Pseudomonas putida, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Ochrobactrum anthropi, Sphingomonas paucimobilis and Chrysemonas luteola. Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus were reported inside root and shoot tissues of a number of tested plants. The dense bacterial populations reported speak well to the very possible significant role played by the endophytic bacterial populations in the survival, in respect of nutrition and health, of existing plants. Such groups of diazotrophs are good candidates, as bio-preparates, to support the growth of future field crops grown in deserts of north Sinai and irrigated by the water of El

  1. Direct anthelmintic effects of condensed tannins from diverse plant sources against Ascaris suum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Andrew R; Fryganas, Christos; Ramsay, Aina; Mueller-Harvey, Irene; Thamsborg, Stig M

    2014-01-01

    Ascaris suum is one of the most prevalent nematode parasites in pigs and causes significant economic losses, and also serves as a good model for A. lumbricoides, the large roundworm of humans that is ubiquitous in developing countries and causes malnutrition, stunted growth and compromises immunity to other pathogens. New treatment options for Ascaris infections are urgently needed, to reduce reliance on the limited number of synthetic anthelmintic drugs. In areas where Ascaris infections are common, ethno-pharmacological practices such as treatment with natural plant extracts are still widely employed. However, scientific validation of these practices and identification of the active compounds are lacking, although observed effects are often ascribed to plant secondary metabolites such as tannins. Here, we extracted, purified and characterised a wide range of condensed tannins from diverse plant sources and investigated anthelmintic effects against A. suum in vitro. We show that condensed tannins can have potent, direct anthelmintic effects against A. suum, as evidenced by reduced migratory ability of newly hatched third-stage larvae and reduced motility and survival of fourth-stage larvae recovered from pigs. Transmission electron microscopy showed that CT caused significant damage to the cuticle and digestive tissues of the larvae. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the strength of the anthelmintic effect is related to the polymer size of the tannin molecule. Moreover, the identity of the monomeric structural units of tannin polymers may also have an influence as gallocatechin and epigallocatechin monomers exerted significant anthelmintic activity whereas catechin and epicatechin monomers did not. Therefore, our results clearly document direct anthelmintic effects of condensed tannins against Ascaris and encourage further in vivo investigation to determine optimal strategies for the use of these plant compounds for the prevention and/or treatment of

  2. Mycorrhizal fungi of Vanilla: diversity, specificity and effects on seed germination and plant growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porras-Alfaro, Andrea; Bayman, Paul

    2007-01-01

    Mycorrhizal fungi are essential for the germination of orchid seeds. However, the specificity of orchids for their mycorrhizal fungi and the effects of the fungi on orchid growth are controversial. Mycorrhizal fungi have been studied in some temperate and tropical, epiphytic orchids, but the symbionts of tropical, terrestrial orchids are still unknown. Here we study diversity, specificity and function of mycorrhizal fungi in Vanilla, a pantropical genus that is both terrestrial and epiphytic. Mycorrhizal roots were collected from four Vanilla species in Puerto Rico, Costa Rica and Cuba. Cultured and uncultured mycorrhizal fungi were identified by sequencing the internal transcribed spacer region of nuclear rDNA (nrITS) and part of the mitochondrial ribosomal large subunit (mtLSU), and by counting number of nuclei in hyphae. Vanilla spp. were associated with a wide range of mycorrhizal fungi: Ceratobasidium, Thanatephorus and Tulasnella. Related fungi were found in different species of Vanilla, although at different relative frequencies. Ceratobasidium was more common in roots in soil and Tulasnella was more common in roots on tree bark, but several clades of fungi included strains from both substrates. Relative frequencies of genera of mycorrhizal fungi differed significantly between cultured fungi and those detected by direct amplification. Ceratobasidium and Tulasnella were tested for effects on seed germination of Vanilla and effects on growth of Vanilla and Dendrobium plants. We found significant differences among fungi in effects on seed germination and plant growth. Effects of mycorrhizal fungi on Vanilla and Dendrobium were similar: a clade of Ceratobasidium had a consistently positive effect on plant growth and seed germination. This clade has potential use in germination and propagation of orchids. Results confirmed that a single orchid species can be associated with several mycorrhizal fungi with different functional consequences for the plant.

  3. Direct anthelmintic effects of condensed tannins from diverse plant sources against Ascaris suum.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew R Williams

    Full Text Available Ascaris suum is one of the most prevalent nematode parasites in pigs and causes significant economic losses, and also serves as a good model for A. lumbricoides, the large roundworm of humans that is ubiquitous in developing countries and causes malnutrition, stunted growth and compromises immunity to other pathogens. New treatment options for Ascaris infections are urgently needed, to reduce reliance on the limited number of synthetic anthelmintic drugs. In areas where Ascaris infections are common, ethno-pharmacological practices such as treatment with natural plant extracts are still widely employed. However, scientific validation of these practices and identification of the active compounds are lacking, although observed effects are often ascribed to plant secondary metabolites such as tannins. Here, we extracted, purified and characterised a wide range of condensed tannins from diverse plant sources and investigated anthelmintic effects against A. suum in vitro. We show that condensed tannins can have potent, direct anthelmintic effects against A. suum, as evidenced by reduced migratory ability of newly hatched third-stage larvae and reduced motility and survival of fourth-stage larvae recovered from pigs. Transmission electron microscopy showed that CT caused significant damage to the cuticle and digestive tissues of the larvae. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the strength of the anthelmintic effect is related to the polymer size of the tannin molecule. Moreover, the identity of the monomeric structural units of tannin polymers may also have an influence as gallocatechin and epigallocatechin monomers exerted significant anthelmintic activity whereas catechin and epicatechin monomers did not. Therefore, our results clearly document direct anthelmintic effects of condensed tannins against Ascaris and encourage further in vivo investigation to determine optimal strategies for the use of these plant compounds for the prevention and

  4. Communities of different plant diversity respond similarly to drought stress: experimental evidence from field non-weeded and greenhouse conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanta, Vojtěch; Doležal, Jiří; Zemková, Lenka; Lepš, Jan

    2012-06-01

    Accelerating rate of species loss has prompted researchers to study the role of species diversity in processes that control ecosystem functioning. Although negative impact of species loss has been documented, the evidence concerning its impact on ecosystem stability is still limited. Here, we studied the effects of declining species and functional diversity on plant community responses to drought in the field (open to weed colonization) and greenhouse conditions. Both species and functional diversity positively affected the average yields of field communities. However, this pattern was similar in both drought-stressed and control plots. No effect of diversity on community resistance, biomass recovery after drought and resilience was found because drought reduced biomass production similarly at each level of diversity by approximately 30 %. The use of dissimilarity (characterized by Euclidean distance) revealed higher variation under changing environments (drought-stressed vs. control) in more diverse communities compared to less species-rich assemblages. In the greenhouse experiment, the effect of species diversity affected community resistance, indicating that more diverse communities suffered more from drought than species-poor ones. We conclude that our study did not support the insurance hypothesis (stability properties of a community should increase with species richness) because species diversity had an equivocal effect on ecosystem resistance and resilience in an environment held under non-weeded practice, regardless of the positive relationship between sown species diversity and community biomass production. More species-rich communities were less resistant against drought-stressed conditions than species-poor ones grown in greenhouse conditions.

  5. Plant diversity at Chilapatta Reserve Forest of Terai Duars in sub-humid tropical foothills of Indian Eastern Himalayas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gopal Shukla; Rajib Biswas; A. P. Das; Sumit Chakravarty

    2014-01-01

    From March 2007 to March 2009 we quantified plant diversity at Chilapatta Reserve Forest in Terai Duars in the Indian eastern Himala-yas. We sampled stratified random nested quadrats. Species richness was 311, representing 167 genera and 81 families. The species diversity index and concentration of dominance of the forest were 2.20 and 0.0072, respectively. Shannon-Wiener index and evenness indices were 4.77 and 1.44, respectively. The Importance Value Index (IVI) of species ranged from 0.13 to 37.94. The estimated diversity indices indicated heterogene-ity of the forest in its composition, structure, function and dynamics. Rich forest plant diversity supports the need for continued conservation of tropical forests.

  6. Insect cytochromes P450: diversity, insecticide resistance and tolerance to plant toxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, J G; Liu, N; Wen, Z

    1998-11-01

    In the last decade, studies of individual insect P450s have blossomed. This new information has furthered our understanding of P450 diversity, insecticide resistance and tolerance to plant toxins. Insect P450s can be adult specific, larval specific or life stage independent. Similarly, insect P450s vary as to the tissues where they are expressed and in their response to inducers. Insect P450s can now be rapidly sequenced using degenerate PCR primers. Given the huge diversity represented by the Class Insecta, this technique will provide vast amounts of new information about insect P450s and the evolution of the P450 gene superfamily. CYP6D1 is responsible for monooxygenase-mediated resistance to pyrethroid insecticides in the house fly. CYP6D1 is ubiquitously expressed in adults with 10-fold higher levels found in the resistant strain compared to susceptible strains. CYP6D1 is on autosome 1 in house fly. The high level of expression found in the resistant strain is due to genes on autosomes 1 and 2. Whether or not the different CYP6D1 alleles found in resistant and susceptible strains have any role in resistance remains to be elucidated. The CYP6B gene subfamily is involved in the metabolism of host plant toxins (i.e. furanocoumarins). CYP6B gene transcripts in two Papilio (swallowtail) species have been shown to be induced by host plant toxins and in turn to metabolize these toxins. CYP6B P450s play a critical role in allowing Papilio to adapt to furanocoumarin-containing host plants. Similarities in structural and promoter regions of the CYP6B genes suggest that they are derived from a common ancestral gene. Although the P450 monooxygenases of insects are important for the metabolism of hormones and phermones, no individual P450 has yet been shown to metabolize an endogenous compound. Advances in this area are critical because they will provide important new information about insect physiology, biochemistry and development.

  7. Palaeo plant diversity in subtropical Africa – ecological assessment of a conceptual model of climate–vegetation interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. P. Groner

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available We here critically re-assess a conceptual model dealing with the potential effect of plant diversity on climate–vegetation feedback, and provide an improved version adjusted to plant types that prevailed during the African Humid Period (AHP. Our work contributes to the understanding of the timing and abruptness of vegetation decline at the end of the AHP, investigated by various working groups during the past two decades using a wide range of model and palaeoproxy reconstruction approaches. While some studies indicated an abrupt collapse of vegetation at the end of the AHP, others suggested a gradual decline. Claussen et al. (2013 introduced a new aspect in the discussion, proposing that plant diversity in terms of moisture requirements could affect the strength of climate–vegetation feedback. In a conceptual model study, the authors illustrated that high plant diversity could stabilize an ecosystem, whereas a reduction in plant diversity might allow for an abrupt regime shift under gradually changing environmental conditions. Based on recently published pollen data and the current state of ecological literature, we evaluate the representation of climate–vegetation feedback in this conceptual approach, and put the suggested conclusions into an ecological context. In principle, the original model reproduces the main features of different plant types interacting together with climate although vegetation determinants other than precipitation are neglected. However, the model cannot capture the diversity of AHP vegetation. Especially tropical gallery forest taxa, indirectly linked to local precipitation, are not appropriately represented. In order to fill the gaps in the description of plant types regarding AHP diversity, we modify the original model in four main aspects. First, the growth ranges in terms of moisture requirements are extended by upper limits to represent full environmental envelopes. Second, data-based AHP plant types replace

  8. Functional trade-offs increase species diversity in experimental plant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben-Hur, Eyal; Fragman-Sapir, Ori; Hadas, Rivka; Singer, Alon; Kadmon, Ronen

    2012-11-01

    Functional trade-offs have long been recognised as important mechanisms of species coexistence, but direct experimental evidence for such mechanisms is extremely rare. Here, we test the effect of one classical trade-off - a negative correlation between seed size and seed number - by establishing microcosm plant communities with positive, negative and no correlation between seed size and seed number and analysing the effect of the seed size/number correlation on species richness. Consistent with theory, a negative correlation between seed size and seed number led to a higher number of species in the communities and a corresponding wider range of seed size (a measure of functional richness) by promoting coexistence of large- and small-seeded species. Our study provides the first direct evidence that a seed size/number trade-off may contribute to species coexistence, and at a wider context, demonstrates the potential role of functional trade-offs in maintaining species diversity.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Hammen, Thomas; Hooghiemstra, Henry

    2000-04-01

    The neotropical Amazonian and Andean plant diversity developed mainly during the Tertiary. In Amazonia, Miocene floral diversity seems considerably higher than today. During the Neogene, tropical taxa entered newly created montane area, and montane taxa entered the tropical lowlands. The general decrease of temperature during the upper Neogene and especially during the Quaternary glacial periods may have caused considerable extinctions in the lowlands. Representation of pollen of apparently principally montane taxa ( Podocarpus, Hedyosmum) in Miocene, Pliocene, and Quaternary sediments of Amazonia and surroundings, is still difficult to interpret in terms of temperature decrease at low elevation. Changes in precipitation may have profound impact on the composition of vegetation communities; Ilex and Melastomataceae increase significantly in many glacial pollen records. Increase of Weinmannia in Amazonian pollen records seems the best indicator of downward migration of montane vegetation belts. A temperature lowering at sea-level of 4.5 ±1°C during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) seems reasonable; it may have caused a downslope migration of some 700 m of the lower montane vegetation belt; lower montane arboreal species may have been able to grow in higher elevation areas (>500 m) of Amazonia, increasing background pollen values of montane taxa in the area. Difference between a cool and wet Middle Pleniglacial (60-28 ka BP), and a cold and dry Upper Pleniglacial (28-14 ka BP; thus including the LGM) is evident in Andean and Amazonian records; statements about environmental conditions of the ice-age Amazon should be specified chronologically. The Middle Pleniglacial is a time of accumulation of fluvial sediments. The Upper Pleniglacial is a time of incision of the rivers in their sediments; sedimentation started again in the Lateglacial (since ca. 13 ka BP) and the Holocene, when lake levels rose again. Based on simplified considerations of precipitation changes and

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    CHIDANANDA NAGAMANGALA KANCHISWAMY

    2015-03-01

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

  11. Plant diversity patterns in neotropical dry forests and their conservation implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banda-R, Karina; Delgado-Salinas, Alfonso; Dexter, Kyle G; Linares-Palomino, Reynaldo; Oliveira-Filho, Ary; Prado, Darién; Pullan, Martin; Quintana, Catalina; Riina, Ricarda; Rodríguez M, Gina M; Weintritt, Julia; Acevedo-Rodríguez, Pedro; Adarve, Juan; Álvarez, Esteban; Aranguren B, Anairamiz; Arteaga, Julián Camilo; Aymard, Gerardo; Castaño, Alejandro; Ceballos-Mago, Natalia; Cogollo, Álvaro; Cuadros, Hermes; Delgado, Freddy; Devia, Wilson; Dueñas, Hilda; Fajardo, Laurie; Fernández, Ángel; Fernández, Miller Ángel; Franklin, Janet; Freid, Ethan H; Galetti, Luciano A; Gonto, Reina; González-M, Roy; Graveson, Roger; Helmer, Eileen H; Idárraga, Álvaro; López, René; Marcano-Vega, Humfredo; Martínez, Olga G; Maturo, Hernán M; McDonald, Morag; McLaren, Kurt; Melo, Omar; Mijares, Francisco; Mogni, Virginia; Molina, Diego; Moreno, Natalia Del Pilar; Nassar, Jafet M; Neves, Danilo M; Oakley, Luis J; Oatham, Michael; Olvera-Luna, Alma Rosa; Pezzini, Flávia F; Dominguez, Orlando Joel Reyes; Ríos, María Elvira; Rivera, Orlando; Rodríguez, Nelly; Rojas, Alicia; Särkinen, Tiina; Sánchez, Roberto; Smith, Melvin; Vargas, Carlos; Villanueva, Boris; Pennington, R Toby

    2016-09-23

    Seasonally dry tropical forests are distributed across Latin America and the Caribbean and are highly threatened, with less than 10% of their original extent remaining in many countries. Using 835 inventories covering 4660 species of woody plants, we show marked floristic turnover among inventories and regions, which may be higher than in other neotropical biomes, such as savanna. Such high floristic turnover indicates that numerous conservation areas across many countries will be needed to protect the full diversity of tropical dry forests. Our results provide a scientific framework within which national decision-makers can contextualize the floristic significance of their dry forest at a regional and continental scale. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  12. Membrane bioreactor wastewater treatment plants reveal diverse yeast and protist communities of potential significance in biofouling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liébana, Raquel; Arregui, Lucía; Belda, Ignacio; Gamella, Luis; Santos, Antonio; Marquina, Domingo; Serrano, Susana

    2015-01-01

    The yeast community was studied in a municipal full-scale membrane bioreactor wastewater treatment plant (MBR-WWTP). The unexpectedly high diversity of yeasts indicated that the activated sludge formed a suitable environment for them to proliferate, with cellular concentrations of 2.2 ± 0.8 × 10(3) CFU ml(-1). Sixteen species of seven genera were present in the biological reactor, with Ascomycetes being the most prevalent group (93%). Most isolates were able to grow in a synthetic wastewater medium, adhere to polyethylene surfaces, and develop biofilms of variable complexity. The relationship between yeast populations and the protists in the MBR-WWTP was also studied, revealing that some protist species preyed on and ingested yeasts. These results suggest that yeast populations may play a role in the food web of a WWTP and, to some extent, contribute to membrane biofouling in MBR systems.

  13. Growth and plant diversity in a man-made thinned Cedrus atlantica stand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poormadjidian, Mohammad Reza; Tabari, Masoud

    2007-08-01

    In order to study the growth characteristics of Atlas cedar (Cedrus atlantica Manetti) and to assess the plant diversity an investigation was carried out in a 30 year old man-made stand located in the Caspian mountain forests (north of Iran). In this stand a silvicultural treatment as thinning was operated in five replications of 200 m2 for removing 25% of basal area. Likewise five replications of 200 m2 were considered as control (unthinned). The results of 5 year investigation revealed that diameter growth of C. atlantica was two times greater in thinned stand than in unthinned stand (patlantica has been adapted to this region and therefore thinning practice can be a good measure for increasing timber production.

  14. Indigenous Knowledge of Dayaks Bakumpai in Barito Kuala District on the Management of Plant Diversity Growing at Streams and Swamps

    OpenAIRE

    Dharmono Dharmono; Ahmad Sofyan; Herita Warni

    2013-01-01

    Research aimed at describing profile of indigenous knowldge owned by the Dayaks Bakumpai in Batola district on managing the diversity of herbs growing at the river flow and swamp. Data on herb used by the tribe were grouped based on the etnobotanic study, covering study botany, etnofarmacology, etnoantrophology, etnolinguistik and etnoekologi. We also observed how the Dayaks Bakumpai in Batola district preserve the diversity of plant in around them, and how their efforts in bequeathing or tea...

  15. Genetic diversity of high-elevation populations of an endangered medicinal plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nag, Akshay; Ahuja, Paramvir Singh; Sharma, Ram Kumar

    2014-11-21

    Intraspecific genetic variation in natural populations governs their potential to overcome challenging ecological and environmental conditions. In addition, knowledge of this variation is critical for the conservation and management of endangered plant taxa. Found in the Himalayas, Podophyllum hexandrum is an endangered high-elevation plant species that has great medicinal importance. Here we report on the genetic diversity analysis of 24 P. hexandrum populations (209 individuals), representing the whole of the Indian Himalayas. In the present study, seven amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) primer pairs generated 1677 fragments, of which 866 were found to be polymorphic. Neighbour joining clustering, principal coordinate analysis and STRUCTURE analysis clustered 209 individuals from 24 populations of the Indian Himalayan mountains into two major groups with a significant amount of gene flow (Nm = 2.13) and moderate genetic differentiation Fst(0.196), G'st(0.20). This suggests that, regardless of geographical location, all of the populations from the Indian Himalayas are intermixed and are composed broadly of two types of genetic populations. High variance partitioned within populations (80 %) suggests that most of the diversity is restricted to the within-population level. These results suggest two possibilities about the ancient population structure of P. hexandrum: either all of the populations in the geographical region of the Indian Himalayas are remnants of a once-widespread ancient population, or they originated from two types of genetic populations, which coexisted a long time ago, but subsequently separated as a result of long-distance dispersal and natural selection. High variance partitioned within the populations indicates that these populations have evolved in response to their respective environments over time, but low levels of heterozygosity suggest the presence of historical population bottlenecks.

  16. Fungal diversity and plant growth promotion of endophytic fungi from six halophytes in Suncheon Bay.

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, Young-Hyun; Yoon, Hyeokjun; Kang, Sang-Mo; Shin, Jae-Ho; Choo, Yeon-Sik; Lee, In-Jung; Lee, Jin-Man; Kim, Jong-Guk

    2012-11-01

    Endophytic fungi were isolated from roots of six halophytes in Suncheon Bay. The endophytic fungi of 35 species isolated from halophytes were identified by internal transcribed spacer (ITS) containing the ITS1, 5.8s, and ITS2 regions. All fungal strains were analyzed to diversity at the genus level. Fungal culture filtrates (FCF) of endophytic fungi were treated to Waito-c rice (WR) seedling for plant growth-promoting verification. It was confirmed that fungal strain Sj-2-2 provided plant growth promotion (PGP) to WR seedling. Then, PGP of Suaeda japonica was confirmed by treating culture filtrate of Sj-2-2. As a result, it was verified that culture filtrate of Sj-2-2 had more advanced PGP than positive control when treated to S. japonica. The secondary metabolites involved in culture filtrate of Sj-2-2 were identified by HPLC and GC-MS SIM analysis. The presence of physiologically bioactive gibberellins (GAs) and other inactive GAs in culture filtrate of Sj-2-2 was detected. The molecular analysis of sequences of Sj-2-2 showed the similarity to Penicillium sp. of 99% homology. The PGP of Sj-2-2 as well as symbiosis between endophytic fungi and halophytes growing naturally in salt marsh was confirmed. Sj-2-2 was identified as a new fungal strain producing GAs by molecular analysis of sequences. Consequently, the Sj-2-2 fungal strain was named as Penicillium sp. Sj-2-2. In this study, the diversity of endophytic fungi isolated from roots of halophytes in salt marsh and the PGP of a new gibberellin-producing fungal strain were confirmed.

  17. Meta-analysis of susceptibility of woody plants to loss of genetic diversity through habitat fragmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vranckx, Guy; Jacquemyn, Hans; Muys, Bart; Honnay, Olivier

    2012-04-01

    Shrubs and trees are assumed less likely to lose genetic variation in response to habitat fragmentation because they have certain life-history characteristics such as long lifespans and extensive pollen flow. To test this assumption, we conducted a meta-analysis with data on 97 woody plant species derived from 98 studies of habitat fragmentation. We measured the weighted response of four different measures of population-level genetic diversity to habitat fragmentation with Hedge's d and Spearman rank correlation. We tested whether the genetic response to habitat fragmentation was mediated by life-history traits (longevity, pollination mode, and seed dispersal vector) and study characteristics (genetic marker and plant material used). For both tests of effect size habitat fragmentation was associated with a substantial decrease in expected heterozygosity, number of alleles, and percentage of polymorphic loci, whereas the population inbreeding coefficient was not associated with these measures. The largest proportion of variation among effect sizes was explained by pollination mechanism and by the age of the tissue (progeny or adult) that was genotyped. Our primary finding was that wind-pollinated trees and shrubs appeared to be as likely to lose genetic variation as insect-pollinated species, indicating that severe habitat fragmentation may lead to pollen limitation and limited gene flow. In comparison with results of previous meta-analyses on mainly herbaceous species, we found trees and shrubs were as likely to have negative genetic responses to habitat fragmentation as herbaceous species. We also found that the genetic variation in offspring was generally less than that of adult trees, which is evidence of a genetic extinction debt and probably reflects the genetic diversity of the historical, less-fragmented landscape. ©2011 Society for Conservation Biology.

  18. Diversity in plant hydraulic traits explains seasonal and inter-annual variations of vegetation dynamics in seasonally dry tropical forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiangtao; Medvigy, David; Powers, Jennifer S; Becknell, Justin M; Guan, Kaiyu

    2016-10-01

    We assessed whether diversity in plant hydraulic traits can explain the observed diversity in plant responses to water stress in seasonally dry tropical forests (SDTFs). The Ecosystem Demography model 2 (ED2) was updated with a trait-driven mechanistic plant hydraulic module, as well as novel drought-phenology and plant water stress schemes. Four plant functional types were parameterized on the basis of meta-analysis of plant hydraulic traits. Simulations from both the original and the updated ED2 were evaluated against 5 yr of field data from a Costa Rican SDTF site and remote-sensing data over Central America. The updated model generated realistic plant hydraulic dynamics, such as leaf water potential and stem sap flow. Compared with the original ED2, predictions from our novel trait-driven model matched better with observed growth, phenology and their variations among functional groups. Most notably, the original ED2 produced unrealistically small leaf area index (LAI) and underestimated cumulative leaf litter. Both of these biases were corrected by the updated model. The updated model was also better able to simulate spatial patterns of LAI dynamics in Central America. Plant hydraulic traits are intercorrelated in SDTFs. Mechanistic incorporation of plant hydraulic traits is necessary for the simulation of spatiotemporal patterns of vegetation dynamics in SDTFs in vegetation models.

  19. Land use imperils plant and animal community stability through changes in asynchrony rather than diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blüthgen, Nico; Simons, Nadja K; Jung, Kirsten; Prati, Daniel; Renner, Swen C; Boch, Steffen; Fischer, Markus; Hölzel, Norbert; Klaus, Valentin H; Kleinebecker, Till; Tschapka, Marco; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Gossner, Martin M

    2016-01-01

    Human land use may detrimentally affect biodiversity, yet long-term stability of species communities is vital for maintaining ecosystem functioning. Community stability can be achieved by higher species diversity (portfolio effect), higher asynchrony across species (insurance hypothesis) and higher abundance of populations. However, the relative importance of these stabilizing pathways and whether they interact with land use in real-world ecosystems is unknown. We monitored inter-annual fluctuations of 2,671 plant, arthropod, bird and bat species in 300 sites from three regions. Arthropods show 2.0-fold and birds 3.7-fold higher community fluctuations in grasslands than in forests, suggesting a negative impact of forest conversion. Land-use intensity in forests has a negative net impact on stability of bats and in grasslands on birds. Our findings demonstrate that asynchrony across species--much more than species diversity alone--is the main driver of variation in stability across sites and requires more attention in sustainable management.

  20. Land use imperils plant and animal community stability through changes in asynchrony rather than diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blüthgen, Nico; Simons, Nadja K.; Jung, Kirsten; Prati, Daniel; Renner, Swen C.; Boch, Steffen; Fischer, Markus; Hölzel, Norbert; Klaus, Valentin H.; Kleinebecker, Till; Tschapka, Marco; Weisser, Wolfgang W.; Gossner, Martin M.

    2016-01-01

    Human land use may detrimentally affect biodiversity, yet long-term stability of species communities is vital for maintaining ecosystem functioning. Community stability can be achieved by higher species diversity (portfolio effect), higher asynchrony across species (insurance hypothesis) and higher abundance of populations. However, the relative importance of these stabilizing pathways and whether they interact with land use in real-world ecosystems is unknown. We monitored inter-annual fluctuations of 2,671 plant, arthropod, bird and bat species in 300 sites from three regions. Arthropods show 2.0-fold and birds 3.7-fold higher community fluctuations in grasslands than in forests, suggesting a negative impact of forest conversion. Land-use intensity in forests has a negative net impact on stability of bats and in grasslands on birds. Our findings demonstrate that asynchrony across species—much more than species diversity alone—is the main driver of variation in stability across sites and requires more attention in sustainable management. PMID:26869180

  1. A comparative study on plant diversity in alder (Alnus subcordata stands of natural and plantation areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SEYED ALIAKBAR REZAEI TALESHI

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Diversity index is the useful criteria for evaluating sustainability of forest ecosystems. Current study carried out in Alder (Alnus subcordata C.A. Meyer stands that located in north forests of Iran. The aim of the study is express the plant diversity indices and positive role of the trees both natural and plantation forms. Data of Alder trees and associated species were recorded in sample plots which lay down in study area randomly. The abundance, density, percentage of frequency of each species was calculated by standard methods. The results of analysis revealed that, 47 species (21 trees and shrubs species and 26 herbaceous species were abundant in 80 sample plots both in natural and plantations Alder stands. Whilst the results showed that the number of species in natural area (44 species was more than plantation stands (37 species. Comparison of species distribution in different physiographical situation showed that some species such as Alnus subcordata, Parrotia persica, Rubus hyrcanus and Prunus sp. recorded in spread rang of physiographic variables as elevation, slopes and aspects. The biodiversity criteria as Shannon H’ and Simpsons D and 1/D indexes showed that they were more in natural stands than plantation areas.

  2. Review: Chios mastic gum: a plant-produced resin exhibiting numerous diverse pharmaceutical and biomedical properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimas, Konstantinos S; Pantazis, Panayotis; Ramanujam, Rama

    2012-01-01

    Chios mastic gum (CMG) is a resin produced by the plant Pistacia lentiscus var. chia. CMG is used to extract the mastic gum essential oil (MGO). CMG and MGO consist of nearly 70 constituents and have demonstrated numerous and diverse biomedical and pharmacological properties including (a) eradication of bacteria and fungi that may cause peptic ulcers, tooth plaque formation and malodor of the mouth and saliva; (b) amelioration or dramatic reduction of symptoms of autoimmune diseases by inhibiting production of pro-inflammatory substances by activated macrophages, production of cytokines by peripheral blood mononuclear cells in patients with active Crohn's disease, and suppression of production of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines in an asthma model in mice; (c) protection of the cardiovascular system by effectively lowering the levels of total serum cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein and triglycerides in rats, and protection of low-density lipoprotein from oxidation in humans; (d) induction of apoptosis in human cancer cells in vitro and extensive inhibition of growth of human tumors xenografted in immunodeficient mice; and (e) improvement of symptoms in patients with functional dyspepsia. Collectively taken, these numerous and diverse medical and pharmaceutical properties of CMG and MGO warrant further research in an effort to enhance specific properties and identify specific constituent(s) that might be associated with each property.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-02-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  5. Directed seed dispersal of Piper by Carollia perspicillata and its effect on understory plant diversity and folivory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar, Diego; Kelm, Detlev H; Salazar, Diego

    2013-11-01

    Directed dispersal occurs when seeds are differentially deposited to sites where offspring survivorship is higher than at randomly chosen sites. Traditionally, characteristics of the dispersal target sites that could increase survivorship of the dispersed plants are thought to be intrinsic to the sites. If directed dispersal is constant over extended periods of time, however, it is likely that nonrandom patterns of dispersal could modify the ecological characteristics of the target site in ways that could increase survivorship and fitness of the dispersed plants. Here we report patterns of Piper diversity (richness, equitability, and similarity) and Piper folivory within plots near natural or artificial roosts of Carollia perspicillata vs. similar plots without bat roosts. Plots with bat roosts, both natural and artificial, had significantly higher Piper species diversity. Additionally, we found that plots with a higher Piper species diversity showed less specialist folivory, higher generalist folivory, and lower total herbivore leaf damage than plots with low Piper diversity. Finally, plots with bat roosts also showed less specialist folivory, lower generalist folivory, and lower total folivory when compared to plots without roosts. We propose that long-lasting nonrandom patterns of seed dispersal can change the local ecological characteristics of target sites via changes in plant diversity, and that these changes are likely to reduce the local rates of folivory and, therefore, increase seed and adult plant survivorship.

  6. Genetic diversity and composition of a plasmid metagenome from a wastewater treatment plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlüter, Andreas; Krause, Lutz; Szczepanowski, Rafael; Goesmann, Alexander; Pühler, Alfred

    2008-08-31

    Plasmid metagenome nucleotide sequence data were recently obtained from wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) bacteria with reduced susceptibility to selected antimicrobial drugs by applying the ultrafast 454-sequencing technology. The sequence dataset comprising 36,071,493 bases (346,427 reads with an average read length of 104 bases) was analysed for genetic diversity and composition by using a newly developed bioinformatic pipeline based on assignment of environmental gene tags (EGTs) to protein families stored in the Pfam database. Short amino acid sequences deduced from the plasmid metagenome sequence reads were compared to profile hidden Markov models underlying Pfam. Obtained matches evidenced that many reads represent genes having predicted functions in plasmid replication, stability and plasmid mobility which indicates that WWTP bacteria harbour genetically stabilised and mobile plasmids. Moreover, the data confirm a high diversity of plasmids residing in WWTP bacteria. The mobile organic peroxide resistance plasmid pMAC from Acinetobacter baumannii was identified as reference plasmid for the most abundant replication module type in the sequenced sample. Accessory plasmid modules encode different transposons, insertion sequences, integrons, resistance and virulence determinants. Most of the matches to Transposase protein families were identified for transposases similar to the one of the chromate resistance transposon Tn5719. Noticeable are hits to beta-lactamase protein families which suggests that plasmids from WWTP bacteria encode different enzymes possessing beta-lactam-hydrolysing activity. Some of the sequence reads correspond to antibiotic resistance genes that were only recently identified in clinical isolates of human pathogens. EGT analysis thus proofed to be a very valuable method to explore genetic diversity and composition of the present plasmid metagenome dataset.

  7. Indigenous Knowledge of Dayaks Bakumpai in Barito Kuala District on the Management of Plant Diversity Growing at Streams and Swamps

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dharmono Dharmono

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Research aimed at describing profile of indigenous knowldge owned by the Dayaks Bakumpai in Batola district on managing the diversity of herbs growing at the river flow and swamp. Data on herb used by the tribe were grouped based on the etnobotanic study, covering study botany, etnofarmacology, etnoantrophology, etnolinguistik and etnoekologi. We also observed how the Dayaks Bakumpai in Batola district preserve the diversity of plant in around them, and how their efforts in bequeathing or teaching the traditional knowledge of an old breed generation to his young daam in managing diversity of herbs around them. The study was carried out at three vellages, namely Simpang Arja, Pengulu and Ulu Benteng. The results showed that 52 plant species living along the river and 67 species that live in the marsh. Based on the interview we found that (1 the profile of indigenous knowldge dayaks bakumpai district batola in making use of the diversity of plant in surrounding shown through etno-linguistic, etno-economy, etno-anthropology, etno-farmacology and etno-ecology against 44 tufted herbs of 67 of herbs found, (2 Dayaks Bakumpai in Batola district, to preserve the diversity of plant surrounding them, have done without planting, but by making use of herbs without a certain rule, making use of herbs by a certain rule, making use of herbs let plant grown in nature, and destroy plants that exist or cultivated, and (3 efforts for the inheriting the indigenous knowldge to its young generation have been done by women and quite alarming that many young ages of Dayaks Bakumpai do not know the name of herbs around them.

  8. Novel symbiotic protoplasts formed by endophytic fungi explain their hidden existence, lifestyle switching, and diversity within the plant kingdom.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter R Atsatt

    Full Text Available Diverse fungi live all or part of their life cycle inside plants as asymptomatic endophytes. While endophytic fungi are increasingly recognized as significant components of plant fitness, it is unclear how they interact with plant cells; why they occur throughout the fungal kingdom; and why they are associated with most fungal lifestyles. Here we evaluate the diversity of endophytic fungi that are able to form novel protoplasts called mycosomes. We found that mycosomes cultured from plants and phylogenetically diverse endophytic fungi have common morphological characteristics, express similar developmental patterns, and can revert back to the free-living walled state. Observed with electron microscopy, mycosome ontogeny within Aureobasidium pullulans may involve two organelles: double membrane-bounded promycosome organelles (PMOs that form mycosomes, and multivesicular bodies that may form plastid-infecting vesicles. Cultured mycosomes also contain a double membrane-bounded organelle, which may be homologous to the A. pullulans PMO. The mycosome PMO is often expressed as a vacuole-like organelle, which alternatively may contain a lipoid body or a starch grain. Mycosome reversion to walled cells occurs within the PMO, and by budding from lipid or starch-containing mycosomes. Mycosomes discovered in chicken egg yolk provided a plant-independent source for analysis: they formed typical protoplast stages, contained fungal ITS sequences and reverted to walled cells, suggesting mycosome symbiosis with animals as well as plants. Our results suggest that diverse endophytic fungi express a novel protoplast phase that can explain their hidden existence, lifestyle switching, and diversity within the plant kingdom. Importantly, our findings outline "what, where, when and how", opening the way for cell and organelle-specific tests using in situ DNA hybridization and fluorescent labels. We discuss developmental, ecological and evolutionary contexts that

  9. Novel symbiotic protoplasts formed by endophytic fungi explain their hidden existence, lifestyle switching, and diversity within the plant kingdom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atsatt, Peter R; Whiteside, Matthew D

    2014-01-01

    Diverse fungi live all or part of their life cycle inside plants as asymptomatic endophytes. While endophytic fungi are increasingly recognized as significant components of plant fitness, it is unclear how they interact with plant cells; why they occur throughout the fungal kingdom; and why they are associated with most fungal lifestyles. Here we evaluate the diversity of endophytic fungi that are able to form novel protoplasts called mycosomes. We found that mycosomes cultured from plants and phylogenetically diverse endophytic fungi have common morphological characteristics, express similar developmental patterns, and can revert back to the free-living walled state. Observed with electron microscopy, mycosome ontogeny within Aureobasidium pullulans may involve two organelles: double membrane-bounded promycosome organelles (PMOs) that form mycosomes, and multivesicular bodies that may form plastid-infecting vesicles. Cultured mycosomes also contain a double membrane-bounded organelle, which may be homologous to the A. pullulans PMO. The mycosome PMO is often expressed as a vacuole-like organelle, which alternatively may contain a lipoid body or a starch grain. Mycosome reversion to walled cells occurs within the PMO, and by budding from lipid or starch-containing mycosomes. Mycosomes discovered in chicken egg yolk provided a plant-independent source for analysis: they formed typical protoplast stages, contained fungal ITS sequences and reverted to walled cells, suggesting mycosome symbiosis with animals as well as plants. Our results suggest that diverse endophytic fungi express a novel protoplast phase that can explain their hidden existence, lifestyle switching, and diversity within the plant kingdom. Importantly, our findings outline "what, where, when and how", opening the way for cell and organelle-specific tests using in situ DNA hybridization and fluorescent labels. We discuss developmental, ecological and evolutionary contexts that provide a robust

  10. Are post-fire silvicultural treatments a useful tool to fight the climate change threat in terms of plant diversity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hedo de Santiago, Javier; Esteban Lucasr Borja, Manuel; de las Heras, Jorge

    2016-04-01

    Adaptative forest management demands a huge scientific knowledge about post-fire vegetation dynamics, taking into account the current context of global change. We hypothesized that management practices should be carry out taking into account the climate change effect, to obtain better results in the biodiversity maintenance across time. All of this with respect to diversity and species composition of the post-fire naturally regenerated Aleppo pine forests understory. The study was carried out in two post-fire naturally regenerated Aleppo pine forests in the Southeastern of the Iberian Peninsula, under contrasting climatic conditions: Yeste (Albacete) shows a dry climate and Calasparra (Murcia) shows a semiarid climate. Thinning as post-fire silvicultural treatment was carried out five years after the wildfire event, in the year 1999. An experiment of artificial drought was designed to evacuate 15% of the natural rainfall in both sites, Yeste and Calasparra, to simulate climate change. Taking into account all the variables (site, silvicultural treatment and artificial drought), alpha diversity indices including species richness, Shannon and Simpson diversity indices, and plant cover, were analyzed as a measure of vegetation abundance. The results showed that plant species were affected by thinning, whereas induced drought affected total cover and species, with lower values at Yeste. Significant site variation was also observed in soil properties, species richness and total plant cover, conversely to the plant species diversity indices. We conclude that the plant community shows different responses to a simulated environment of climate change depending on the experimental site.

  11. A novel instrument to delineate varietal and harvest effects on blueberry fruit texture during storage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Changying; Luo, Jiawei; MacLean, Dan

    2011-07-01

    Firmness is an important quality index for blueberries. It is the major factor that determines consumer acceptability, storability and resistance to injury and diseases during storage and fresh marketing. Blueberry cultivars vary in their firmness, with southern highbush cultivars usually softer than Rabbiteye blueberries. In this study, varietal and harvest effects on blueberry firmness were measured by the Firmtech II and laser air-puff instruments. This was the first time that the laser air-puff, a non-contact food firmness tester, had been used for firmness testing of small fruit, such as blueberry. Two southern highbush cultivars (Sweet Crisp and Emerald) and two Rabbiteye cultivars (Vernon and Savory) were used for varietal effect measurement, while a Rabbiteye cultivar (Premier) that was both machine and hand harvested was used for harvest effect observation. Fifty berry samples per replicate and four replicates were tested by two instruments at harvest and after 7, 14, or 21 days of storage. The laser air-puff tester successfully delineated the difference in firmness due to cultivar characteristics and harvest methods, as well as the firmness loss over 21 days of postharvest cold storage (4 °C). The firmness index derived from the laser air-puff tester achieved a significant correlation with the firmness values measured by the Firmtech (R(2)=0.80). A new texture index, springiness, was developed from the laser air-puff, which largely reflects the varietal differences in elasticity of fruit. This study demonstrated the efficacy of the laser air-puff instrument for blueberry firmness measurement. This non-contact instrument not only provides an alternative method of firmness measurement, but also offers a new index for fruit elasticity evaluation and better texture evaluation for blueberries. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry.

  12. Diversity of Endophytic Fungi Associated with the Roots of Four Aquatic Plants Inhabiting Two Wetlands in Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    You, Young-Hyun; Park, Jong Myong; Park, Jong-Han; Kim, Jong-Guk

    2015-09-01

    A total of 4 aquatic plants, Eleocharis kuroguwai Ohwi, Hydrocharis dubia Backer, Salvinia natans All., and Zizania latifolia Turcz., were sampled from representative two wetlands of South Korea. A total of 38 endophytic fungal strains were isolated from aquatic plants native to the Daepyeong wetland, and 27 strains were isolated from the Jilnal wetland. The internal transcribed spacer regions of fungal isolates were sequenced and a phylogenetic analysis was performed. In addition, endophytic fungal diversity from each wetland and host plant species was deduced. A total of 25 fungal genera were purely isolated, and 16 fungal genera were isolated from each of the two wetlands. Commonly isolated genera from both wetlands were Aspergillus, Cladosporium, Clonostachys, Fusarium, Leptosphaeria, Penicillium, and Talaromyces. This study revealed that fungal diversity varied with environmental conditions and by host plant in representative two wetlands.

  13. ATP-binding cassette and multidrug and toxic compound extrusion transporters in plants: a common theme among diverse detoxification mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoji, Tsubasa

    2014-01-01

    Plants have developed elaborate detoxification mechanisms to cope with a large number of potentially toxic compounds, which include exogenous xenobiotics and endogenous metabolites, especially secondary metabolites. After enzymatic modification or synthesis, such compounds are transported and accumulated in apoplastic cell walls or central vacuoles in plant cells. Membrane transporters actively catalyze translocation of a diverse range of these compounds across various membranes within cells. Biochemical, molecular, and genetic studies have begun to reveal functions of a handful of ATP-binding cassette and multidrug and toxic compound extrusion family transporters engaged in transport of organic xenobiotics, heavy metals, metalloids, aluminum, alkaloids, flavonoids, terpenoids, terpenoid-derived phytohormones, cuticle lipids, and monolignols in plants. This detoxification versatility and metabolic diversity may underlie the functional diversification in plants of these families of transporters, which are largely involved in multidrug resistance in microorganisms and animals. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Genetic Diversity and Demographic History of Wild and Cultivated/Naturalised Plant Populations: Evidence from Dalmatian Sage (Salvia officinalis L., Lamiaceae)

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Rešetnik, Ivana; Baričevič, Dea; Batîr Rusu, Diana; Carović-Stanko, Klaudija; Chatzopoulou, Paschalina; Dajić-St