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Sample records for plants successful biological

  1. Plant synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Wusheng; Stewart, C Neal

    2015-05-01

    Plant synthetic biology is an emerging field that combines engineering principles with plant biology toward the design and production of new devices. This emerging field should play an important role in future agriculture for traditional crop improvement, but also in enabling novel bioproduction in plants. In this review we discuss the design cycles of synthetic biology as well as key engineering principles, genetic parts, and computational tools that can be utilized in plant synthetic biology. Some pioneering examples are offered as a demonstration of how synthetic biology can be used to modify plants for specific purposes. These include synthetic sensors, synthetic metabolic pathways, and synthetic genomes. We also speculate about the future of synthetic biology of plants.

  2. Plant Systems Biology (editorial)

    Science.gov (United States)

    In June 2003, Plant Physiology published an Arabidopsis special issue devoted to plant systems biology. The intention of Natasha Raikhel and Gloria Coruzzi, the two editors of this first-of-its-kind issue, was ‘‘to help nucleate this new effort within the plant community’’ as they considered that ‘‘...

  3. Wetland plants: biology and ecology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Cronk, Julie K; Fennessy, M. Siobhan

    2001-01-01

    Providing a detailed account of the biology and ecology of wetland plants as well as applications of wetland plant science, this book presents a synthesis of studies and reviews from biology, plant...

  4. Plant Vascular Biology 2010

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ding, Biao

    2014-11-17

    This grant supported the Second International Conference on Plant Vascular Biology (PVB 2010) held July 24-28, 2010 on the campus of Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio. Biao Ding (Ohio State University; OSU) and David Hannapel (Iowa State University; ISU) served as co-chairs of this conference. Biao Ding served as the local organizer. PVB is defined broadly here to include studies on the biogenesis, structure and function of transport systems in plants, under conditions of normal plant growth and development as well as of plant interactions with pathogens. The transport systems cover broadly the xylem, phloem, plasmodesmata and vascular cell membranes. The PVB concept has emerged in recent years to emphasize the integrative nature of the transport systems and approaches to investigate them.

  5. PLANT SUCCESSION ON SICILIAN TERRACES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. RUHL

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available 189 phytosociological relevés have been made in five areas of Sicily, three on volcanic substrates and two on limestones, to study plant community succession trends within abandoned terraced vineyards and cereal fields. Disturbance status and abandonment age was recorded for each sample plot. DCA of these relevés suggests that four are the most important factors driving succession, i.e. geological substrate, bioclimate, age of abandonment and disturbance. In most cases - if there are some dispersal centres near the old fields - undisturbed and less disturbed terraces evolve quite rapidly towards the local potential “climax” community. Different trends have been recorded on the areas which underwent and still undergo frequent and severe disturbance: succession is biased or even blocked in a steady state, so that grassland, garrigue, mantle or herb-dominated communities prevail. The species composition of the plant communities subject to disturbance seems to be strongly connected with the time gap between abandonment and first disturbance occurrence. The “mixed” ecological-structural-phytosociological approach here adopted to describe plant communities was quite effective to interpret abandoned terraces communities and their dynamism.

  6. PLANT SUCCESSION ON SICILIAN TERRACES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. RUHL

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available 189 phytosociological relevés have been made in five areas of Sicily, three on volcanic substrates and two on limestones, to study plant community succession trends within abandoned terraced vineyards and cereal fields. Disturbance status and abandonment age was recorded for each sample plot. DCA of these relevés suggests that four are the most important factors driving succession, i.e. geological substrate, bioclimate, age of abandonment and disturbance. In most cases - if there are some dispersal centres near the old fields - undisturbed and less disturbed terraces evolve quite rapidly towards the local potential “climax” community. Different trends have been recorded on the areas which underwent and still undergo frequent and severe disturbance: succession is biased or even blocked in a steady state, so that grassland, garrigue, mantle or herb-dominated communities prevail. The species composition of the plant communities subject to disturbance seems to be strongly connected with the time gap between abandonment and first disturbance occurrence. The “mixed” ecological-structural-phytosociological approach here adopted to describe plant communities was quite effective to interpret abandoned terraces communities and their dynamism.

  7. Bioinspired materials: Boosting plant biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholes, Gregory D.; Sargent, Edward H.

    2014-04-01

    Chloroplasts with extended photosynthetic activity beyond the visible absorption spectrum, and living leaves that perform non-biological functions, are made possible by localizing nanoparticles within plant organelles.

  8. Opportunities in plant synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Charis; Martin, Lisa; Bastow, Ruth

    2014-05-01

    Synthetic biology is an emerging field uniting scientists from all disciplines with the aim of designing or re-designing biological processes. Initially, synthetic biology breakthroughs came from microbiology, chemistry, physics, computer science, materials science, mathematics, and engineering disciplines. A transition to multicellular systems is the next logical step for synthetic biologists and plants will provide an ideal platform for this new phase of research. This meeting report highlights some of the exciting plant synthetic biology projects, and tools and resources, presented and discussed at the 2013 GARNet workshop on plant synthetic biology.

  9. Plant Biology Science Projects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hershey, David R.

    This book contains science projects about seed plants that deal with plant physiology, plant ecology, and plant agriculture. Each of the projects includes a step-by-step experiment followed by suggestions for further investigations. Chapters include: (1) "Bean Seed Imbibition"; (2) "Germination Percentages of Different Types of Seeds"; (3)…

  10. Successful startup of a full-scale acrylonitrile wastewater biological treatment plant (ACN-WWTP) by eliminating the inhibitory effects of toxic compounds on nitrification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Yuanyuan; Jin, Xibiao; Wang, Feng; Liu, Yongdi; Chen, Xiurong

    2014-01-01

    During the startup of a full-scale anoxic/aerobic (A/O) biological treatment plant for acrylonitrile wastewater, the removal efficiencies of NH(3)-N and total Kjeldahl nitrogen (TKN) were 1.29 and 0.83% on day 30, respectively. The nitrification process was almost totally inhibited, which was mainly caused by the inhibitory effects of toxic compounds. To eliminate the inhibition, cultivating the bacteria that degrade toxic compounds with patience was applied into the second startup of the biological treatment plant. After 75 days of startup, the inhibitory effects of the toxic compounds on nitrification were eliminated. The treatment plant has been operated stably for more than 3 years. During the last 100 days, the influent concentrations of chemical oxygen demand (COD), NH(3)-N, TKN and total cyanide (TCN) were 831-2,164, 188-516, 306-542 and 1.17-9.57 mg L(-1) respectively, and the effluent concentrations were 257 ± 30.9, 3.30 ± 1.10, 31.6 ± 4.49 and 0.40 ± 0.10 mg L(-1) (n = 100), respectively. Four strains of cyanide-degrading bacteria which were able to grow with cyanide as the sole carbon and nitrogen source were isolated from the full-scale biological treatment plant. They were short and rod-shaped under scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and were identified as Brevundimonas sp., Rhizobium sp., Dietzia natronolimnaea and Microbacterium sp., respectively.

  11. The biology of plant metabolomics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hall, R.D.

    2011-01-01

    Following a general introduction, this book includes details of metabolomics of model species including Arabidopsis and tomato. Further chapters provide in-depth coverage of abiotic stress, data integration, systems biology, genetics, genomics, chemometrics and biostatisitcs. Applications of plant m

  12. Researchers Discover Plants Biological Clock

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    王全良

    1996-01-01

    Scientists who created glow-in-the-dark plants by shooting up seedlingswith firefly DNA have identified the first biological clock gene in plants. Discovery of the timepiece gene, which controls such biological rhythmsas daily leaf movements and proe openings, flower-blooming schedules andphotosynthesis cycles, could lead to a host of applications in ornamental horti-culture, agriculture and even human health. Many researchers believe that

  13. Thermodynamical journey in plant biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adelin eBarbacci

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Nonequilibrium irreversible thermodynamics constitute a meaningful point of view suitable to explore life with a rich paradigm. This analytical framework can be used to span the gap from molecular processes to plant function and shows great promise to create a holistic description of life. Since living organisms dissipate energy, exchange entropy and matter with their environment, they can be assimilated to dissipative structures. This concept inherited from nonequilibrium thermodynamics has four properties which defines a scale independent framework suitable to provide a simpler and more comprehensive view of the highly complex plant biology. According to this approach, a biological process is modeled as an avalanche of dissipative structures. Each dissipative structure, corresponds to an unitary biological process, which is initiated by the amplification of a fluctuation. Evolution of the process leads to the breakage of the system symmetry and to the export of entropy. Exporting entropy to the surrounding environment corresponds to collecting information about it. Biological actors which break the symmetry of the system and which store information are by consequence, key actors on which experiments and data analysis focus most. This paper aims at illustrating properties of dissipative structure through familiar examples and thus initiating the dialogue between nonequilibrium thermodynamics and plant biology.

  14. Hybrid Photocatalytic-Biological Demonstration Plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maldonado, M. I.; Malato, S.; Blanco, J.; Oller, I.; Gernjak, W.; Perez-Estrada, L.

    2006-07-01

    This contribution is presenting the tests and operational results performed for designing a new hybrid solar photocatalytic-biological demonstration plant built in a chemical industry located near Almeria (Spain). It will treat saline wastewater (sea water) containing a nonbiodegradable compound up to 550 mg/L and a Total Organic Carbon up to 600 mg/L. Initially, the wastewater (WW) is partly oxidized by solar photo-Fenton process to render the wastewater biodegradable. At pilot-plant scale the wastewater was successfully treated and the conditions for coupling with a biological treatment using Advanced Oxidation Processes (AOP) as pre-treatment were determined. Samples were collected along the AOP process and their biodegradability was evaluated with the Zahn-Wellens (ZW) test. Enhancement of WW biodegradability was confirmed (>70% biodegradable). Hydrogen peroxide management for reduced consumption is also discussed in detail and the principal parameters for designing the demonstration plant have been obtained. (Author)

  15. Plant population processes in the course of forest succession in abandoned meadows. I. Variability and diversity of floristic compositions, and biological mechanisms of species turnover

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krystyna Falińska

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Within Białowieża Forest the studies on the rate and nature of changes in meadow vegetation on the sites no longer mown were conducted for 15 years (1974-1988. The successional processes were analysed at various organizational levels by applying hierarchi­cal system of study areas, varying in size (Figs. 1, 2. Changes in plant landscape were studied on 15 ha, those in phytocoenoses - 4 × 1 ha, populations - 24 × 200 ml, and those in the individual development - 6 × 25 m2. Forest re-colonized abandoned meadows at a various rate through: a gradual transformation of meadow phytocoenoses into tall­herb, and later brushwood communities, which went on for c. 15 years; b formation of the mosaic of monospecific aggregations of a few, among 124, components of meadow communities, such aggregations persisted for 5-15 years; c the development of tree biogroups (forest outpost directly in the meadow sod. This diversity resulted from the habitat heterogeneity (microrelief, water level and variety of colonization strategies among the species present prior to the succession. They vary in their role in the successional process and can: I stimulate the changes in the structure of meadow phytocoenoses and lead to the formation of new communities (promotors, 2 limit species turnover due to their long-lived aggregations (inhibitors, 3 play no crucial role in the vegetation transformation (indifferents.

  16. Enabling plant synthetic biology through genome engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baltes, Nicholas J; Voytas, Daniel F

    2015-02-01

    Synthetic biology seeks to create new biological systems, including user-designed plants and plant cells. These systems can be employed for a variety of purposes, ranging from producing compounds of industrial or therapeutic value, to reducing crop losses by altering cellular responses to pathogens or climate change. To realize the full potential of plant synthetic biology, techniques are required that provide control over the genetic code - enabling targeted modifications to DNA sequences within living plant cells. Such control is now within reach owing to recent advances in the use of sequence-specific nucleases to precisely engineer genomes. We discuss here the enormous potential provided by genome engineering for plant synthetic biology.

  17. Promoting Interest in Plant Biology with Biographies of Plant Hunters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daisey, Peggy

    1996-01-01

    Describes the use of biographical stories to promote student interest in plant biology. Discusses plant hunters of various time periods, including ancient, middle ages, renaissance, colonial Americas, and 18th and 19th centuries; women plant hunters of the 1800s and early 1900s; and modern plant hunters. Discusses classroom strategies for the…

  18. Ninth International Workshop on Plant Membrane Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1993-12-31

    This report is a compilation of abstracts from papers which were discussed at a workshop on plant membrane biology. Topics include: plasma membrane ATP-ases; plant-environment interactions, membrane receptors; signal transduction; ion channel physiology; biophysics and molecular biology; vaculor H+ pumps; sugar carriers; membrane transport; and cellular structure and function.

  19. Celebrating Plant Cells: A Special Issue on Plant Cell Biology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    @@ A special issue on plant cell biology is long overdue for JIPB! In the last two decades or so, the plant biology community has been thrilled by explosive discoveries regarding the molecular and genetic basis of plant growth, development, and responses to the environment, largely owing to recent maturation of model systems like Arabidopsis thaliana and the rice Oryza sativa, as well as the rapid development of high throughput technologies associated with genomics and proteomics.

  20. Wetland plants: biology and ecology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Cronk, Julie K; Fennessy, M. Siobhan

    2001-01-01

    .... You get a thorough discussion of the range of wetland plant adaptations to life in water or saturated soils, high salt or high sulfur, low light and low carbon dioxide levels, as well as a detailed...

  1. The iPlant Collaborative: Cyberinfrastructure for Plant Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goff, Stephen A.; Vaughn, Matthew; McKay, Sheldon; Lyons, Eric; Stapleton, Ann E.; Gessler, Damian; Matasci, Naim; Wang, Liya; Hanlon, Matthew; Lenards, Andrew; Muir, Andy; Merchant, Nirav; Lowry, Sonya; Mock, Stephen; Helmke, Matthew; Kubach, Adam; Narro, Martha; Hopkins, Nicole; Micklos, David; Hilgert, Uwe; Gonzales, Michael; Jordan, Chris; Skidmore, Edwin; Dooley, Rion; Cazes, John; McLay, Robert; Lu, Zhenyuan; Pasternak, Shiran; Koesterke, Lars; Piel, William H.; Grene, Ruth; Noutsos, Christos; Gendler, Karla; Feng, Xin; Tang, Chunlao; Lent, Monica; Kim, Seung-Jin; Kvilekval, Kristian; Manjunath, B. S.; Tannen, Val; Stamatakis, Alexandros; Sanderson, Michael; Welch, Stephen M.; Cranston, Karen A.; Soltis, Pamela; Soltis, Doug; O'Meara, Brian; Ane, Cecile; Brutnell, Tom; Kleibenstein, Daniel J.; White, Jeffery W.; Leebens-Mack, James; Donoghue, Michael J.; Spalding, Edgar P.; Vision, Todd J.; Myers, Christopher R.; Lowenthal, David; Enquist, Brian J.; Boyle, Brad; Akoglu, Ali; Andrews, Greg; Ram, Sudha; Ware, Doreen; Stein, Lincoln; Stanzione, Dan

    2011-01-01

    The iPlant Collaborative (iPlant) is a United States National Science Foundation (NSF) funded project that aims to create an innovative, comprehensive, and foundational cyberinfrastructure in support of plant biology research (PSCIC, 2006). iPlant is developing cyberinfrastructure that uniquely enables scientists throughout the diverse fields that comprise plant biology to address Grand Challenges in new ways, to stimulate and facilitate cross-disciplinary research, to promote biology and computer science research interactions, and to train the next generation of scientists on the use of cyberinfrastructure in research and education. Meeting humanity's projected demands for agricultural and forest products and the expectation that natural ecosystems be managed sustainably will require synergies from the application of information technologies. The iPlant cyberinfrastructure design is based on an unprecedented period of research community input, and leverages developments in high-performance computing, data storage, and cyberinfrastructure for the physical sciences. iPlant is an open-source project with application programming interfaces that allow the community to extend the infrastructure to meet its needs. iPlant is sponsoring community-driven workshops addressing specific scientific questions via analysis tool integration and hypothesis testing. These workshops teach researchers how to add bioinformatics tools and/or datasets into the iPlant cyberinfrastructure enabling plant scientists to perform complex analyses on large datasets without the need to master the command-line or high-performance computational services. PMID:22645531

  2. The iPlant Collaborative: Cyberinfrastructure for Plant Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen A Goff

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available The iPlant Collaborative (iPlant is a United States National Science Foundation (NSF funded project that aims to create an innovative, comprehensive, and foundational cyberinfrastructure in support of plant biology research (PSCIC, 2006. iPlant is developing cyberinfrastructure that uniquely enables scientists throughout the diverse fields that comprise plant biology to address Grand Challenges in new ways, to stimulate and facilitate cross-disciplinary research, to promote biology and computer science research interactions, and to train the next generation of scientists on the use of cyberinfrastructure in research and education. Meeting humanity's projected demands for agricultural and forest products and the expectation that natural ecosystems be managed sustainably will require synergies from the application of information technologies. The iPlant cyberinfrastructure design is based on an unprecedented period of research community input, and leverages developments in high-performance computing, data storage, and cyberinfrastructure for the physical sciences. iPlant is an open-source project with application programming interfaces that allow the community to extend the infrastructure to meet its needs. iPlant is sponsoring community-driven workshops addressing specific scientific questions via analysis tool integration and hypothesis testing. These workshops teach researchers how to add bioinformatics tools and/or datasets into the iPlant cyberinfrastructure enabling plant scientists to perform complex analyses on large datasets without the need to master the command-line or high-performance computational services.

  3. Electron Tomography in Plant Cell Biology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    This review focuses on the contribution of electron tomography-based techniques to our understanding of cellular processes in plant cells. Electron microscopy techniques have evolved to provide better three-dimensional resolution and improved preservation of the subcellular components. In particular, the combination of cryofixation/freeze substitution and electron tomography have allowed plant cell biologists to image organelles and macromolecular complexes in their native cellular context with unprecedented three-dimensional resolution (4-7 nm). Until now, electron tomography has been applied in plant cell biology for the study of cytokinesis, Golgi structure and trafficking, formation of plant endosome/prevacuolar compartments, and organization of photosynthetic membranes. We discuss in this review the new insights that these tomographic studies have brought to the plant biology field.

  4. Monitoring Biological Activity at Geothermal Power Plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peter Pryfogle

    2005-09-01

    The economic impact of microbial growth in geothermal power plants has been estimated to be as high as $500,000 annually for a 100 MWe plant. Many methods are available to monitor biological activity at these facilities; however, very few plants have any on-line monitoring program in place. Metal coupon, selective culturing (MPN), total organic carbon (TOC), adenosine triphosphate (ATP), respirometry, phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA), and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) characterizations have been conducted using water samples collected from geothermal plants located in California and Utah. In addition, the on-line performance of a commercial electrochemical monitor, the BIoGEORGE?, has been evaluated during extended deployments at geothermal facilities. This report provides a review of these techniques, presents data on their application from laboratory and field studies, and discusses their value in characterizing and monitoring biological activities at geothermal power plants.

  5. Plant Metabolomics: An Indispensable System Biology Tool for Plant Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, Jun; Yang, Litao; Zhang, Dabing; Shi, Jianxin

    2016-06-01

    As genomes of many plant species have been sequenced, demand for functional genomics has dramatically accelerated the improvement of other omics including metabolomics. Despite a large amount of metabolites still remaining to be identified, metabolomics has contributed significantly not only to the understanding of plant physiology and biology from the view of small chemical molecules that reflect the end point of biological activities, but also in past decades to the attempts to improve plant behavior under both normal and stressed conditions. Hereby, we summarize the current knowledge on the genetic and biochemical mechanisms underlying plant growth, development, and stress responses, focusing further on the contributions of metabolomics to practical applications in crop quality improvement and food safety assessment, as well as plant metabolic engineering. We also highlight the current challenges and future perspectives in this inspiring area, with the aim to stimulate further studies leading to better crop improvement of yield and quality.

  6. Plant Metabolomics: An Indispensable System Biology Tool for Plant Science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Hong

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available As genomes of many plant species have been sequenced, demand for functional genomics has dramatically accelerated the improvement of other omics including metabolomics. Despite a large amount of metabolites still remaining to be identified, metabolomics has contributed significantly not only to the understanding of plant physiology and biology from the view of small chemical molecules that reflect the end point of biological activities, but also in past decades to the attempts to improve plant behavior under both normal and stressed conditions. Hereby, we summarize the current knowledge on the genetic and biochemical mechanisms underlying plant growth, development, and stress responses, focusing further on the contributions of metabolomics to practical applications in crop quality improvement and food safety assessment, as well as plant metabolic engineering. We also highlight the current challenges and future perspectives in this inspiring area, with the aim to stimulate further studies leading to better crop improvement of yield and quality.

  7. OUT Success Stories: Solar Trough Power Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, J.

    2000-08-01

    The Solar Electric Generating System (SEGS) plants use parabolic-trough solar collectors to capture the sun's energy and convert it to heat. The SEGS plants range in capacity from 13.8 to 80 MW, and they were constructed to meet Southern California Edison Company's periods of peak power demand.

  8. Modification-specific proteomics in plant biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ytterberg, A Jimmy; Jensen, Ole N

    2010-01-01

    and proteomics. In general, methods for PTM characterization are developed to study yeast and mammalian biology and later adopted to investigate plants. Our point of view is that it is advantageous to enrich for PTMs on the peptide level as part of a quantitative proteomics strategy to not only identify the PTM...

  9. Third international congress of plant molecular biology: Molecular biology of plant growth and development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hallick, R.B. [ed.

    1995-02-01

    The Congress was held October 6-11, 1991 in Tucson with approximately 3000 scientists attending and over 300 oral presentations and 1800 posters. Plant molecular biology is one of the most rapidly developing areas of the biological sciences. Recent advances in the ability to isolate genes, to study their expression, and to create transgenic plants have had a major impact on our understanding of the many fundamental plant processes. In addition, new approaches have been created to improve plants for agricultural purposes. This is a book of presentation and posters from the conference.

  10. Ecological Complexity and the Success of Fungal Biological Control Agents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guy R. Knudsen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Fungal biological control agents against plant pathogens, especially those in soil, operate within physically, biologically, and spatially complex systems by means of a variety of trophic and nontrophic interspecific interactions. However, the biocontrol agents themselves are also subject to the same types of interactions, which may reduce or in some cases enhance their efficacy against target plant pathogens. Characterization of these ecologically complex systems is challenging, but a number of tools are available to help unravel this complexity. Several of these tools are described here, including the use of molecular biology to generate biocontrol agents with useful marker genes and then to quantify these agents in natural systems, epifluorescence and confocal laser scanning microscopy to observe their presence and activity in situ, and spatial statistics and computer simulation modeling to evaluate and predict these activities in heterogeneous soil habitats.

  11. Biologically Active and Antimicrobial Peptides from Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos E. Salas

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Bioactive peptides are part of an innate response elicited by most living forms. In plants, they are produced ubiquitously in roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves, highlighting their physiological importance. While most of the bioactive peptides produced in plants possess microbicide properties, there is evidence that they are also involved in cellular signaling. Structurally, there is an overall similarity when comparing them with those derived from animal or insect sources. The biological action of bioactive peptides initiates with the binding to the target membrane followed in most cases by membrane permeabilization and rupture. Here we present an overview of what is currently known about bioactive peptides from plants, focusing on their antimicrobial activity and their role in the plant signaling network and offering perspectives on their potential application.

  12. PLANT ISOFLAVONES: BIOSYNHTESIS, DETECTION AND BIOLOGICAL PROPERTIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. D. Naumenko

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Biological properties, chemical structures and biosynthesis pathways of plant isoflavones, especially soybean isoflavones (daidzein, genistein and glycitein are reviewed. The structures of isoflavones, and their aglicone and glucosides (glycosides forms as well as isoflavone biosynthesis pathways are described. General information about the advanced methods for the detection of isoflavones and their conjugates are considered. The importance of the profiling of isoflavones, flavonoids and their conjugates by means of analytical tools and methods to dissolve some questions in biology and medicine is discussed. The review provides data on the major isoflavone content in some vegetable crops and in the tissues of different soybean varieties. Health benefits and treatment or preventive properties of isoflavones for cancer, cardiovascular, endocrine diseases and metabolic disorders are highlighted. The mechanisms that may explain their positive biological effects are considered. The information on the application of advanced technologies to create new plant forms producing isoflavonoids with a predicted level of isoflavones, which is the most favorable for the treatment is given. The possibilities to use the metabolic engineering for the increasing of accumulation and synthesis of isoflavones at the non-legume crops such as tobacco, Arabidopsis and maize are considered. The examples how the plant tissues, which are not naturally produced of the isoflavones, can obtain potential for the synthesis of biologically active compounds via inducing of the activity of the introduced enzyme isoflavon synthase, are given. Specific biochemical pathways for increasing the synthesis of isoflavone genistein in Arabidopsis thaliana tissues are discussed. It is concluded that plant genetic engineering which is focused on modification of the secondary metabolites contain in plant tissues, enables to create the new crop varieties with improved agronomic properties and

  13. 2010 Plant Molecular Biology Gordon Research Conference

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Michael Sussman

    2010-07-23

    The Plant Molecular Biology Conference has traditionally covered a breadth of exciting topics and the 2010 conference will continue in that tradition. Emerging concerns about food security have inspired a program with three main themes: (1) genomics, natural variation and breeding to understand adaptation and crop improvement, (2) hormonal cross talk, and (3) plant/microbe interactions. There are also sessions on epigenetics and proteomics/metabolomics. Thus this conference will bring together a range of disciplines, will foster the exchange of ideas and enable participants to learn of the latest developments and ideas in diverse areas of plant biology. The conference provides an excellent opportunity for individuals to discuss their research because additional speakers in each session will be selected from submitted abstracts. There will also be a poster session each day for a two-hour period prior to dinner. In particular, this conference plays a key role in enabling students and postdocs (the next generation of research leaders) to mingle with pioneers in multiple areas of plant science.

  14. Tamarisk: ecohydrology of a successful plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagler, Pamela L.; Quigley, Martin F.

    2013-01-01

    The title of this chapter is adapted from an influential 1987 paper, "Tamarix: Impacts of a Successful Weed" (Brotherson and Field, 1987). That paper made the case for tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) removal, as a high-water-use, invasive species that out-competed and displaced native vegetation on western U.S. rivers. The paper declared that tamarisk was capable of drying up water courses, using as much as 4 m of water per year (expressed as the depth of water applied to an indefinite area the same way rainfall is expressed), water could otherwise support environmental or human water needs. It was also thought to out-compete native trees for establishment sites due to prolific seed production. The paper concluded: "A firm commitment must be made concerning the control of saltcedar because of its unparalleled aggressiveness." This conclusion became the reigning paradigm in riparian restoration efforts for the next decade.

  15. Reshaping Plant Biology: Qualitative and Quantitative Descriptors for Plant Morphology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balduzzi, Mathilde; Binder, Brad M.; Bucksch, Alexander; Chang, Cynthia; Hong, Lilan; Iyer-Pascuzzi, Anjali S.; Pradal, Christophe; Sparks, Erin E.

    2017-01-01

    An emerging challenge in plant biology is to develop qualitative and quantitative measures to describe the appearance of plants through the integration of mathematics and biology. A major hurdle in developing these metrics is finding common terminology across fields. In this review, we define approaches for analyzing plant geometry, topology, and shape, and provide examples for how these terms have been and can be applied to plants. In leaf morphological quantifications both geometry and shape have been used to gain insight into leaf function and evolution. For the analysis of cell growth and expansion, we highlight the utility of geometric descriptors for understanding sepal and hypocotyl development. For branched structures, we describe how topology has been applied to quantify root system architecture to lend insight into root function. Lastly, we discuss the importance of using morphological descriptors in ecology to assess how communities interact, function, and respond within different environments. This review aims to provide a basic description of the mathematical principles underlying morphological quantifications. PMID:28217137

  16. Biological nitrogen fixation in non-legume plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santi, Carole; Bogusz, Didier; Franche, Claudine

    2013-05-01

    Nitrogen is an essential nutrient in plant growth. The ability of a plant to supply all or part of its requirements from biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) thanks to interactions with endosymbiotic, associative and endophytic symbionts, confers a great competitive advantage over non-nitrogen-fixing plants. Because BNF in legumes is well documented, this review focuses on BNF in non-legume plants. Despite the phylogenic and ecological diversity among diazotrophic bacteria and their hosts, tightly regulated communication is always necessary between the microorganisms and the host plant to achieve a successful interaction. Ongoing research efforts to improve knowledge of the molecular mechanisms underlying these original relationships and some common strategies leading to a successful relationship between the nitrogen-fixing microorganisms and their hosts are presented. Understanding the molecular mechanism of BNF outside the legume-rhizobium symbiosis could have important agronomic implications and enable the use of N-fertilizers to be reduced or even avoided. Indeed, in the short term, improved understanding could lead to more sustainable exploitation of the biodiversity of nitrogen-fixing organisms and, in the longer term, to the transfer of endosymbiotic nitrogen-fixation capacities to major non-legume crops.

  17. Biological nitrogen fixation in non-legume plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santi, Carole; Bogusz, Didier; Franche, Claudine

    2013-01-01

    Background Nitrogen is an essential nutrient in plant growth. The ability of a plant to supply all or part of its requirements from biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) thanks to interactions with endosymbiotic, associative and endophytic symbionts, confers a great competitive advantage over non-nitrogen-fixing plants. Scope Because BNF in legumes is well documented, this review focuses on BNF in non-legume plants. Despite the phylogenic and ecological diversity among diazotrophic bacteria and their hosts, tightly regulated communication is always necessary between the microorganisms and the host plant to achieve a successful interaction. Ongoing research efforts to improve knowledge of the molecular mechanisms underlying these original relationships and some common strategies leading to a successful relationship between the nitrogen-fixing microorganisms and their hosts are presented. Conclusions Understanding the molecular mechanism of BNF outside the legume–rhizobium symbiosis could have important agronomic implications and enable the use of N-fertilizers to be reduced or even avoided. Indeed, in the short term, improved understanding could lead to more sustainable exploitation of the biodiversity of nitrogen-fixing organisms and, in the longer term, to the transfer of endosymbiotic nitrogen-fixation capacities to major non-legume crops. PMID:23478942

  18. Space plant biology research in Lithuania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ričkienė, Aurika

    2012-09-01

    In 1957, the Soviet Union launched the first artificial Earth satellite, initiating its space exploration programs. Throughout the rest of the twentieth century, the development of these space programs received special attention from Soviet Union authorities. Scientists from the former Soviet Republics, including Lithuania, participated in these programs. From 1971 to 1990, Lithuanians designed more than 20 experiments on higher plant species during space flight. Some of these experiments had never before been attempted and, therefore, made scientific history. However, the formation and development of space plant biology research in Lithuania or its origins, context of formation, and placement in a worldwide context have not been explored from a historical standpoint. By investigating these topics, this paper seeks to construct an image of the development of a very specific field of science in a small former Soviet republic.

  19. My journey from horticulture to plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeevaart, Jan A D

    2009-01-01

    The author describes the circumstances and opportunities that led him to higher education and to pursue a research career in plant biology. He acknowledges the important roles a few individuals played in guiding him in his career. His early work on flowering was followed by studies on the physiological roles and the metabolism of gibberellins and abscisic acid. He describes how collaborations and technical developments advanced his research from measuring hormones by bioassay to their identification and quantification by mass spectrometry and cloning of hormone biosynthetic genes.

  20. Plant community succession in modern Yellow River Delta, China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    Data were collected in different successional stages using a simultaneous sampling method and analyzed through quantitative classification method. Three large groups and 12 classes were made to represent the community patterns of three succession stages and 12 succession communities. The succession series of plant community in the study area was as follows:saline bare land→community Suaeda salsa→community Tamarix chinensis→grassland. Succession degree and succession process of 12 succession communities were calculated. Most of these communities were in the lower succession stage, however,community Phragmites communis+Glycine soja and community Imperata cylindrica+G. soja were close to the succession stage of grassland climax. Five species diversity indices were used to study the changes in species richness, species evenness and diversity during succession of community. Heterogeneity index and richness index increased gradually during the community succession process, but species evenness tended to decrease with succession development. The relation between succession and environment was studied by ordination technique, and the results showed that the soil salt content was an important factor to halarch succession of the modern Yellow River Delta. It affected community structure, species composition and succession process.

  1. Plant ecdysteroids: plant sterols with intriguing distributions, biological effects and relations to plant hormones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarkowská, Danuše; Strnad, Miroslav

    2016-09-01

    The present review summarises current knowledge of phytoecdysteroids' biosynthesis, distribution within plants, biological importance and relations to plant hormones. Plant ecdysteroids (phytoecdysteroids) are natural polyhydroxylated compounds that have a four-ringed skeleton, usually composed of either 27 carbon atoms or 28-29 carbon atoms (biosynthetically derived from cholesterol or other plant sterols, respectively). Their physiological roles in plants have not yet been confirmed and their occurrence is not universal. Nevertheless, they are present at high concentrations in various plant species, including commonly consumed vegetables, and have a broad spectrum of pharmacological and medicinal properties in mammals, including hepatoprotective and hypoglycaemic effects, and anabolic effects on skeletal muscle, without androgenic side-effects. Furthermore, phytoecdysteroids can enhance stress resistance by promoting vitality and enhancing physical performance; thus, they are considered adaptogens. This review summarises current knowledge of phytoecdysteroids' biosynthesis, distribution within plants, biological importance and relations to plant hormones.

  2. Successful Training Development and Implementation in Plant Modernization Projects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kuhn, A.; Schoenfelder, C.

    2012-07-01

    In plant modernization projects, for life extension or power update, the competence development (in particular, job and needs oriented training) of the plant staff plays an important role for ensuring the highest standard of nuclear safety, and for facilitating an economic operation of the plant. This paper describes challenges, methodology, activities, and results obtained so far from an on-going project in Sweden. - - As conclusion, critical factors for a successful staff training in plant modernization projects include a systematic approach to training, a dedicated training management team, and good interfaces between supplier's engineering teams, experienced training providers, and equipment suppliers.

  3. Fundamental plant biology enabled by the space shuttle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Anna-Lisa; Wheeler, Ray M; Levine, Howard G; Ferl, Robert J

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between fundamental plant biology and space biology was especially synergistic in the era of the Space Shuttle. While all terrestrial organisms are influenced by gravity, the impact of gravity as a tropic stimulus in plants has been a topic of formal study for more than a century. And while plants were parts of early space biology payloads, it was not until the advent of the Space Shuttle that the science of plant space biology enjoyed expansion that truly enabled controlled, fundamental experiments that removed gravity from the equation. The Space Shuttle presented a science platform that provided regular science flights with dedicated plant growth hardware and crew trained in inflight plant manipulations. Part of the impetus for plant biology experiments in space was the realization that plants could be important parts of bioregenerative life support on long missions, recycling water, air, and nutrients for the human crew. However, a large part of the impetus was that the Space Shuttle enabled fundamental plant science essentially in a microgravity environment. Experiments during the Space Shuttle era produced key science insights on biological adaptation to spaceflight and especially plant growth and tropisms. In this review, we present an overview of plant science in the Space Shuttle era with an emphasis on experiments dealing with fundamental plant growth in microgravity. This review discusses general conclusions from the study of plant spaceflight biology enabled by the Space Shuttle by providing historical context and reviews of select experiments that exemplify plant space biology science.

  4. Network news: prime time for systems biology of the plant circadian clock truncated form of the title: Plant circadian clocks

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClung, C. Robertson; Gutiérrez, Rodrigo A.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Whole-transcriptome analyses have established that the plant circadian clock regulates virtually every plant biological process and most prominently hormonal and stress response pathways. Systems biology efforts have successfully modeled the plant central clock machinery and an iterative process of model refinement and experimental validation has contributed significantly to the current view of the central clock machinery. The challenge now is to connect this central clock to the output pathways for understanding how the plant circadian clock contributes to plant growth and fitness in a changing environment. Undoubtedly, systems approaches will be needed to integrate and model the vastly increased volume of experimental data in order to extract meaningful biological information. Thus, we have entered an era of systems modeling, experimental testing, and refinement. This approach, coupled with advances from the genetic and biochemical analyses of clock function, is accelerating our progress towards a comprehensive understanding of the plant circadian clock network. PMID:20889330

  5. Biological Function of REE in Plants & Microbes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2005-01-01

    Rare earth elements (REE) and their compounds are widely applied in agronomic and medical fields for many years. The bioinorganic chemical research of REE during the past few years indicates that REE play important roles in the promotion of photosynthetic rate as well as root absorption, regulation of hormone and nitrogen metabolism, and suppression of microbes, etc. The metallic or non-metallic targets of key biomolecule in various physiological processes can be chosen by REE for the chelation or replacement, which enables REE to regulate the biological functions or behaviors of those biomolecule and consequently leads to significant embodiment of biological function of REE in plants and microbes.Overdose of REE, however, shows an inhibitory effect on living organisms. Therefore, this paper proposes two suggestions that will be available in the extension of full use of REE's biological function. One is to obey the dose law of REE and control REE concentrations within a safe range. The other is to further test the bioaccumulation and long-period influence of REE on organisms.

  6. Strong human association with plant invasion success for Trifolium introductions to New Zealand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gravuer, Kelly; Sullivan, Jon J; Williams, Peter A; Duncan, Richard P

    2008-04-29

    It has proven difficult, when focused only on biological determinants, to explain why some plant species become naturalized in or invade new locations, whereas others fail. We analyzed the invasion of Trifolium (true clover) species into New Zealand, assessing a range of human, biogeographic, and biological influences at three key invasion stages: introduction, naturalization, and spread. We used sparse principal component analysis (SPCA) to define suites of related attributes and aggregated boosted trees to model relationships with invasion outcomes. Human and biogeographic attributes were strongly associated with success at all stages. Whereas biogeographic attributes, notably large native range, were consistently associated with success, different human factors appeared to favor success at different stages, such as presence in early trade/immigration hotspots (introduction), intentional large-scale planting (naturalization), and frequent presence as a seed contaminant (relative spread rate). Biological traits were less strongly associated with success for introduction and spread and little if at all for naturalization; we found that tall perennials with long flowering periods were more frequently selected for introduction, whereas species with extended flowering in New Zealand spread more rapidly. In addition to causal relationships, the importance of human factors may reflect indirect associations, including ecological traits associated with both human use and invasion. Nevertheless, our results highlight key roles that humans can play in facilitating plant invasion via two pathways: (i) commercial introduction leading to widespread planting and concomitant naturalization and spread and (ii) unintentional introduction and spread of species associated with human activities, such as seed contaminants.

  7. Secondary plant succession on disturbed sites at Yucca Mountain, Nevada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Angerer, J.P.; Ostler, W.K.; Gabbert, W.D.; Schultz, B.W.

    1994-12-01

    This report presents the results of a study of secondary plant succession on disturbed sites created during initial site investigations in the late 1970s and early 1980s at Yucca Mountain, NV. Specific study objectives were to determine the rate and success of secondary plant succession, identify plant species found in disturbances that may be suitable for site-specific reclamation, and to identify environmental variables that influence succession on disturbed sites. During 1991 and 1992, fifty seven disturbed sites were located. Vegetation parameters, disturbance characteristics and environmental variables were measured at each site. Disturbed site vegetation parameters were compared to that of undisturbed sites to determine the status of disturbed site plant succession. Vegetation on disturbed sites, after an average of ten years, was different from undisturbed areas. Ambrosia dumosa, Chrysothamnus teretifolius, Hymenoclea salsola, Gutierrezia sarothrae, Atriplex confertifolia, Atriplex canescens, and Stephanomeria pauciflora were the most dominant species across all disturbed sites. With the exception of A. dumosa, these species were generally minor components of the undisturbed vegetation. Elevation, soil compaction, soil potassium, and amounts of sand and gravel in the soil were found to be significant environmental variables influencing the species composition and abundance of perennial plants on disturbed sites. The recovery rate for disturbed site secondary succession was estimated. Using a linear function (which would represent optimal conditions), the recovery rate for perennial plant cover, regardless of which species comprised the cover, was estimated to be 20 years. However, when a logarithmic function (which would represent probable conditions) was used, the recovery rate was estimated to be 845 years. Recommendations for future studies and site-specific reclamation of disturbances are presented.

  8. Plant biology research and training for the 21st century

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelly, K. [ed.

    1992-12-31

    The committee was assembled in response to a request from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the US Department of Energy (DoE). The leadership of these agencies asked the National Academy of Sciences through the National Research Council (NRC) to assess the status of plant-science research in the United States in light of the opportunities arising from advances inother areas of biology. NRC was asked to suggest ways of accelerating the application of these new biologic concepts and tools to research in plant science with the aim of enhancing the acquisition of new knowledge about plants. The charge to the committee was to examine the following: Organizations, departments, and institutions conducting plant biology research; human resources involved in plant biology research; graduate training programs in plant biology; federal, state, and private sources of support for plant-biology research; the role of industry in conducting and supporting plant-biology research; the international status of US plant-biology research; and the relationship of plant biology to leading-edge research in biology.

  9. Plant biology research and training for the 21st century

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kelly, K. (ed.)

    1992-01-01

    The committee was assembled in response to a request from the National Science Foundation (NSF), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the US Department of Energy (DoE). The leadership of these agencies asked the National Academy of Sciences through the National Research Council (NRC) to assess the status of plant-science research in the United States in light of the opportunities arising from advances inother areas of biology. NRC was asked to suggest ways of accelerating the application of these new biologic concepts and tools to research in plant science with the aim of enhancing the acquisition of new knowledge about plants. The charge to the committee was to examine the following: Organizations, departments, and institutions conducting plant biology research; human resources involved in plant biology research; graduate training programs in plant biology; federal, state, and private sources of support for plant-biology research; the role of industry in conducting and supporting plant-biology research; the international status of US plant-biology research; and the relationship of plant biology to leading-edge research in biology.

  10. The fusion of biology, computer science, and engineering: towards efficient and successful synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linshiz, Gregory; Goldberg, Alex; Konry, Tania; Hillson, Nathan J

    2012-01-01

    Synthetic biology is a nascent field that emerged in earnest only around the turn of the millennium. It aims to engineer new biological systems and impart new biological functionality, often through genetic modifications. The design and construction of new biological systems is a complex, multistep process, requiring multidisciplinary collaborative efforts from "fusion" scientists who have formal training in computer science or engineering, as well as hands-on biological expertise. The public has high expectations for synthetic biology and eagerly anticipates the development of solutions to the major challenges facing humanity. This article discusses laboratory practices and the conduct of research in synthetic biology. It argues that the fusion science approach, which integrates biology with computer science and engineering best practices, including standardization, process optimization, computer-aided design and laboratory automation, miniaturization, and systematic management, will increase the predictability and reproducibility of experiments and lead to breakthroughs in the construction of new biological systems. The article also discusses several successful fusion projects, including the development of software tools for DNA construction design automation, recursive DNA construction, and the development of integrated microfluidics systems.

  11. Mycorrhizal status helps explain invasion success of alien plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menzel, Andreas; Hempel, Stefan; Klotz, Stefan; Moora, Mari; Pyšek, Petr; Rillig, Matthias C; Zobel, Martin; Kühn, Ingolf

    2017-01-01

    It is still debated whether alien plants benefit from being mycorrhizal, or if engaging in the symbiosis constrains their establishment and spread in new regions. We analyzed the association between mycorrhizal status of alien plant species in Germany and their invasion success. We compared whether the representation of species with different mycorrhizal status (obligate, facultative, or non-mycorrhizal) differed at several stages of the invasion process. We used generalized linear models to explain the occupied geographical range of alien plants, incorporating interactions of mycorrhizal status with plant traits related to morphology, reproduction, and life-history. Non-naturalized aliens did not differ from naturalized aliens in the relative frequency of different mycorrhizal status categories. Mycorrhizal status significantly explained the occupied range of alien plants; with facultative mycorrhizal species inhabiting a larger range than non-mycorrhizal aliens and obligate mycorrhizal plant species taking an intermediate position. Aliens with storage organs, shoot metamorphoses, or specialized structures promoting vegetative dispersal occupied a larger range when being facultative mycorrhizal. We conclude that being mycorrhizal is important for the persistence of aliens in Germany and constitutes an advantage compared to being non-mycorrhizal. Being facultative mycorrhizal seems to be especially advantageous for successful spread, as the flexibility of this mycorrhizal status may enable plants to use a broader set of ecological strategies.

  12. Results of activated sludge plants applying enhanced biological phosphorus removal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Machado, A.; Pinto, M.; Neder, K.; Hoffmann, H.

    1989-02-01

    To stop the eutrophication in lakes and rivers, the input of nutrient and phosphorus compounds must be limited. The biological elimination of phosphorus describes a possibility, to reduce phosphorus in the biological stage of a treatment plant to a considerable extent. In this paper the process-system and the operation-results of a pilot plant and two municipal treatment plants are presented, where biological phosphorus reduction about 80% takes place without any constructional modifications.

  13. Biological, ecological and agronomic significance of plant phenolic ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Biological, ecological and agronomic significance of plant phenolic compounds in rhizosphere of the symbiotic legumes. ... African Journal of Biotechnology ... compounds in the rhizosphere of a few studied symbiotic legumes and other plants.

  14. Invasion Success by Plant Breeding Evolutionary Changes as a Critical Factor for the Invasion of the Ornamental Plant Mahonia aquifolium

    CERN Document Server

    Ross, Christel Anne

    2009-01-01

    Invasive species are a major threat to global biodiversity and cause significant economic costs. Studying biological invasions is both essential for preventing future invasions and is also useful in order to understand basic ecological processes. Christel Ross investigates whether evolutionary changes by plant breeding are a relevant factor for the invasion success of Mahonia aquifolium in Germany. Her findings show that invasive populations differ from native populations in quantitative-genetic traits and molecular markers, whereas their genetic diversity is similar. She postulates that these evolutionary changes are rather a result of plant breeding, which includes interspecific hybridisation, than the result of a genetic bottleneck or the releases from specialist herbivores.

  15. Xenopus laevis a success story of biological research in space

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horn, Eberhard R.

    2006-01-01

    The clawed toad Xenopus laevis is a common experimental animal used in many disciplines of life sciences, such as integrative, developmental and molecular biology or experimental medicine. Since 30 years, Xenopus is used in biological research in space. Important milestones were the years 1975, when Xenopus embryos flew for the first time on the Russian space station Salut-4 and 1994, when Xenopus eggs were successfully fertilized for the first time in space during the Japanese Spacelab mission STS-47 and developed in microgravity to vital tadpoles. Most Xenopus studies were related to embryogenesis and development. Observations during and after altered gravity revealed changes such as the thickening of the blastocoel roof, the dorsalization of the tail, and modifications of vestibular reflexes, fictive and freely swimming. Many changes were reversible even during microgravity exposure. Studies about the vestibuloocular reflex or synapse formation revealed an age-related sensitivity to altered gravity. Xenopus offers useful tools for studies about microgravity effects on living systems. Its oocyte is a suitable model to study ion channel function in space; the dorsalization model can be used to analyse growth factor sensibilities. Hardware for life support of adults, tadpoles and embryos (cf. SUPPLY unit in combination with miniaquaria) as well as for controlled experiments in space are prerequisites for an extension of research with Xenopus. The application aspect is based on the fact that fundamental research per se brings benefit to man.

  16. Network news: prime time for systems biology of the plant circadian clock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClung, C Robertson; Gutiérrez, Rodrigo A

    2010-12-01

    Whole-transcriptome analyses have established that the plant circadian clock regulates virtually every plant biological process and most prominently hormonal and stress response pathways. Systems biology efforts have successfully modeled the plant central clock machinery and an iterative process of model refinement and experimental validation has contributed significantly to the current view of the central clock machinery. The challenge now is to connect this central clock to the output pathways for understanding how the plant circadian clock contributes to plant growth and fitness in a changing environment. Undoubtedly, systems approaches will be needed to integrate and model the vastly increased volume of experimental data in order to extract meaningful biological information. Thus, we have entered an era of systems modeling, experimental testing, and refinement. This approach, coupled with advances from the genetic and biochemical analyses of clock function, is accelerating our progress towards a comprehensive understanding of the plant circadian clock network. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Resilience in plant-herbivore networks during secondary succession.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villa-Galaviz, Edith; Boege, Karina; del-Val, Ek

    2012-01-01

    Extensive land-use change in the tropics has produced a mosaic of successional forests within an agricultural and cattle-pasture matrix. Post-disturbance biodiversity assessments have found that regeneration speed depends upon propagule availability and the intensity and duration of disturbance. However, reestablishment of species interactions is still poorly understood and this limits our understanding of the anthropogenic impacts upon ecosystem resilience. This is the first investigation that evaluates plant-herbivore interaction networks during secondary succession. In particular we investigated succession in a Mexican tropical dry forest using data of caterpillar associations with plants during 2007-2010. Plant-herbivore networks showed high resilience. We found no differences in most network descriptors between secondary and mature forest and only recently abandoned fields were found to be different. No significant nestedness or modularity network structure was found. Plant-herbivore network properties appear to quickly reestablish after perturbation, despite differences in species richness and composition. This study provides some valuable guidelines for the implement of restoration efforts that can enhance ecological processes such as the interaction between plants and their herbivores.

  18. Resilience in plant-herbivore networks during secondary succession.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edith Villa-Galaviz

    Full Text Available Extensive land-use change in the tropics has produced a mosaic of successional forests within an agricultural and cattle-pasture matrix. Post-disturbance biodiversity assessments have found that regeneration speed depends upon propagule availability and the intensity and duration of disturbance. However, reestablishment of species interactions is still poorly understood and this limits our understanding of the anthropogenic impacts upon ecosystem resilience. This is the first investigation that evaluates plant-herbivore interaction networks during secondary succession. In particular we investigated succession in a Mexican tropical dry forest using data of caterpillar associations with plants during 2007-2010. Plant-herbivore networks showed high resilience. We found no differences in most network descriptors between secondary and mature forest and only recently abandoned fields were found to be different. No significant nestedness or modularity network structure was found. Plant-herbivore network properties appear to quickly reestablish after perturbation, despite differences in species richness and composition. This study provides some valuable guidelines for the implement of restoration efforts that can enhance ecological processes such as the interaction between plants and their herbivores.

  19. Intraspecific variation in plant size, secondary plant compounds, herbivory and parasitoid assemblages during secondary succession

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kostenko, O.; Bezemer, T.M.

    2013-01-01

    During secondary succession on abandoned agricultural fields the diversity and abundance of insect communities often increases, whereas the performance and nutritional quality of early successional plants often declines. As the diversity and abundance of insects on a single plant are determined by c

  20. Pathogen variation and urea influence selection and success of Streptomyces mixtures in biological control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otto-Hanson, L K; Grabau, Z; Rosen, C; Salomon, C E; Kinkel, L L

    2013-01-01

    Success in biological control of plant diseases remains inconsistent in the field. A collection of well-characterized Streptomyces antagonists (n = 19 isolates) was tested for their capacities to inhibit pathogenic Streptomyces scabies (n = 15 isolates). There was significant variation among antagonists in ability to inhibit pathogen isolates and among pathogens in their susceptibility to inhibition. Only one antagonist could inhibit all pathogens, and antagonist-pathogen interactions were highly specific, highlighting the limitations of single-strain inoculum in biological control. However, the collection of pathogens could be inhibited by several combinations of antagonists, suggesting the potential for successful antagonist mixtures. Urea generally increased effectiveness of antagonists at inhibiting pathogens in vitro (increased mean inhibition zones) but its specific effects varied among antagonist-pathogen combinations. In greenhouse trials, urea enhanced the effectiveness of antagonist mixtures relative to individual antagonists in controlling potato scab. Although antagonist mixtures were frequently antagonistic in the absence of urea, all n= 2 and n = 3 antagonist-isolate combinations were synergistic in the presence of urea. This work provides insights into the efficacy of single- versus multiple-strain inocula in biological control and on the potential for nutrients to influence mixture success.

  1. The extracellular matrix of plants: Molecular, cellular and developmental biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-12-31

    A symposium entitled ``The Extracellular Matrix of Plants: Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology was held in Tamarron, Colorado, March 15--21, 1996. The following topics were explored in addresses by 43 speakers: structure and biochemistry of cell walls; biochemistry, molecular biology and biosynthesis of lignin; secretory pathway and synthesis of glycoproteins; biosynthesis of matrix polysaccharides, callose and cellulose; role of the extracellular matrix in plant growth and development; plant cell walls in symbiosis and pathogenesis.

  2. Federico Delpino and the foundation of plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mancuso, Stefano

    2010-09-01

    In 1867, Federico Delpino, with his seminal work "Pensieri sulla biologia vegetale" (Thoughts on plant biology) established plant biology by defining it not in the broad general sense, namely as the science of living beings, but as a branch of natural science dedicated to the study of plant life in relation to the environment. Today, the figure and achievements of this outstanding plant scientist it is almost unknown. In the following pages, I will concisely describe the main realizations of Federico Delpino and outline the significance of his work for modern plant science.

  3. Stem cells: a plant biology perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheres, B.J.G.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/07493662X

    2005-01-01

    A recent meeting at the Juan March Foundation in Madrid, Spain brought together plant biologists to discuss the characteristics of plant stem cells that are unique and those that are shared by stem cells from the animal kingdom

  4. Stem cells: a plant biology perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheres, B.J.G.

    2005-01-01

    A recent meeting at the Juan March Foundation in Madrid, Spain brought together plant biologists to discuss the characteristics of plant stem cells that are unique and those that are shared by stem cells from the animal kingdom

  5. Biology and biotechnological advances in Jatropha curcas - A biodiesel plant

    KAUST Repository

    Reddy, Muppala P.

    2009-10-31

    Increasing global demand for energy, the impending depletion of fossil fuels, and concern over global climate change have lead to a resurgence in the development of alternative energy sources. Bio-fuels and bio-energy encompass a wide range of alternative sources of energy of biological origin, and offer excellent, environmentally friendly opportunities to address these issues. The recognition that Jatropha oil can yield high quality biodiesel has led to a surge of interest in Jatropha across the globe, more so in view of the potential for avoiding the dilemma of food vs fuel. Hardiness, rapid growth, easy propagation, short gestation period, wide adaptation, and optimum plant size combine to make this species suitable for sustainable cultivation on wastelands. Besides biodiesel from the seed, the plant produces several useful products that also have commercial value. Large scale cultivation remains the single most important factor that will ultimately determine the success of Jatropha as a source of bio-fuel. The limited knowledge of the genetics of this species, low and inconsistent yields, the narrow genetic variability, and vulnerability to insects and diseases are major constraints in successful cultivation of Jatropha as a bio-fuel crop. Despite the optimal protein content and composition of the pressed cake, the presence of phorbol esters makes it unsuitable for consumption by livestock. A non-toxic variety with low or no phorbol ester content has been identified from Mexico, and the utility of pressed cake from this variety as livestock feed has been demonstrated successfully. In the absence of any morphological differences, identification of linked markers for toxic/non-toxic varieties will add value to the crop and facilitate further improvement. This chapter discusses current efforts towards assessing the diversity and phylogeny of Jatropha, identification of specific markers for toxic and non-toxic varieties, and aspects of micropropagation and genetic

  6. Successful joint ventures of plants: arbuscular mycorrhiza and beyond.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ercolin, Flavia; Reinhardt, Didier

    2011-07-01

    Among the oldest symbiotic associations of plants are arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM) with fungi of the phylum Glomeromycota. Although many of the symbiotic signaling components have been identified on the side of the plant, AM fungi have long evaded genetic analysis owing to their strict biotrophy and their exceptional genetics. Recently, the identification of the fungal symbiosis signal (Myc factor) and of a corresponding Myc factor receptor, and new insights into AM fungal genetics, have opened new avenues to address early communication and functional aspects of AM symbiosis. These advances will pave the way for breeding programs towards adapted AM fungi for crop production, and will shed light on the ecology and evolution of this remarkably successful symbiosis. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  7. Application of Bioinformatics and Systems Biology in Medicinal Plant Studies

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    DENG You-ping; AI Jun-mei; XIAO Pei-gen

    2010-01-01

    One important purpose to investigate medicinal plants is to understand genes and enzymes that govern the biological metabolic process to produce bioactive compounds.Genome wide high throughput technologies such as genomics,transcriptomics,proteomics and metabolomics can help reach that goal.Such technologies can produce a vast amount of data which desperately need bioinformatics and systems biology to process,manage,distribute and understand these data.By dealing with the"omics"data,bioinformatics and systems biology can also help improve the quality of traditional medicinal materials,develop new approaches for the classification and authentication of medicinal plants,identify new active compounds,and cultivate medicinal plant species that tolerate harsh environmental conditions.In this review,the application of bioinformatics and systems biology in medicinal plants is briefly introduced.

  8. Imaging corn plants with PhytoPET, a modular PET system for plant biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lee, S.; Kross, B.; McKisson, J.; McKisson, J. E.; Weisenberger, A. G.; Xi, W.; Zorn, C.; Bonito, G.; Howell, C. R.; Reid, C. D.; Crowell, A.; Cumberbatch, L. C.; Topp, C.; Smith, M. F.

    2013-11-01

    PhytoPET is a modular positron emission tomography (PET) system designed specifically for plant imaging. The PhytoPET design allows flexible arrangements of PET detectors based on individual standalone detector modules built from single Hamamatsu H8500 position sensitive photomultiplier tubes and pixelated LYSO arrays. We have used the PhytoPET system to perform preliminary corn plant imaging studies at the Duke University Biology Department Phytotron. Initial evaluation of the PhytoPET system to image the biodistribution of the positron emitting tracer {sup 11}C in corn plants is presented. {sup 11}CO{sub 2} is loaded into corn seedlings by a leaf-labeling cuvette and translocation of {sup 11}C-sugars is imaged by a flexible arrangement of PhytoPET modules on each side. The PhytoPET system successfully images {sup 11}C within corn plants and allows for the dynamic measurement of {sup 11}C-sugar translocation from the leaf to the roots.

  9. Rhodiola plants: Chemistry and biological activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hsiu-Mei Chiang

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Rhodiola is a genus of medicinal plants that originated in Asia and Europe and are used traditionally as adaptogens, antidepressants, and anti-inflammatory remedies. Rhodiola plants are rich in polyphenols, and salidroside and tyrosol are the primary bioactive marker compounds in the standardized extracts of Rhodiola rosea. This review article summarizes the bioactivities, including adaptogenic, antifatigue, antidepressant, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antinoception, and anticancer activities, and the modulation of immune function of Rhodiola plants and its two constituents, as well as their potential to prevent cardiovascular, neuronal, liver, and skin disorders.

  10. Rhodiola plants: Chemistry and biological activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiang, Hsiu-Mei; Chen, Hsin-Chun; Wu, Chin-Sheng; Wu, Po-Yuan; Wen, Kuo-Ching

    2015-09-01

    Rhodiola is a genus of medicinal plants that originated in Asia and Europe and are used traditionally as adaptogens, antidepressants, and anti-inflammatory remedies. Rhodiola plants are rich in polyphenols, and salidroside and tyrosol are the primary bioactive marker compounds in the standardized extracts of Rhodiola rosea. This review article summarizes the bioactivities, including adaptogenic, antifatigue, antidepressant, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antinoception, and anticancer activities, and the modulation of immune function of Rhodiola plants and its two constituents, as well as their potential to prevent cardiovascular, neuronal, liver, and skin disorders. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  11. Biological activity of some Patagonian plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuadra, Pedro; Furrianca, María; Oyarzún, Alejandra; Yáñez, Erwin; Gallardo, Amalia; Fajardo, Víctor

    2005-12-01

    Citotoxicity (inhibition of cell division in fertilized eggs of Loxechinus albus) and general toxicity (using embryos of Artemia salina) of plants belonging to the genera Senecio, Deschampsia, Alstroemeria, Anarthrophyllum, Chloraea and Geranium were investigated.

  12. "Florigen ": an intriguing concept of plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pennazio, Sergio

    2004-01-01

    "Florigen" is the name that Mikhail Chailakhyan coined in 1937 for the putative hormone regulating flowering. At this concept, plant physiologists arrived following early research concerning the effects of temperature and day length on the transition from vegetative to reproductive stages of plants. The existence of florigen was postulated on the experimental backgrounds involving i) the response of plants to inductive conditions; ii) transmission of a flowering stimulus by grafting; iii) extraction of this stimulus from induced plants. This experimental results showed the existence of florigen at least as concept because they always failed to offer the experimental evidence of its chemical existence. The myth of florigen persisted as long as the end of the Seventies, when physiologists began to consider flowering as a complex process in which various classes of hormones might variously interplay.

  13. The molecular biology of meiosis in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercier, Raphaël; Mézard, Christine; Jenczewski, Eric; Macaisne, Nicolas; Grelon, Mathilde

    2015-01-01

    Meiosis is the cell division that reshuffles genetic information between generations. Recently, much progress has been made in understanding this process; in particular, the identification and functional analysis of more than 80 plant genes involved in meiosis have dramatically deepened our knowledge of this peculiar cell division. In this review, we provide an overview of advancements in the understanding of all aspects of plant meiosis, including recombination, chromosome synapsis, cell cycle control, chromosome distribution, and the challenge of polyploidy.

  14. Mapping Transcriptional Networks in Plants: Data-Driven Discovery of Novel Biological Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaudinier, Allison; Brady, Siobhan M

    2016-04-29

    In plants, systems biology approaches have led to the generation of a variety of large data sets. Many of these data are created to elucidate gene expression profiles and their corresponding transcriptional regulatory mechanisms across a range of tissue types, organs, and environmental conditions. In an effort to map the complexity of this transcriptional regulatory control, several types of experimental assays have been used to map transcriptional regulatory networks. In this review, we discuss how these methods can be best used to identify novel biological mechanisms by focusing on the appropriate biological context. Translating network biology back to gene function in the plant, however, remains a challenge. We emphasize the need for validation and insight into the underlying biological processes to successfully exploit systems approaches in an effort to determine the emergent properties revealed by network analyses.

  15. Positron Emission Tomography Detector Development for Plant Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weisenberger, A G; McKisson, J; Stolin, A; Zorn, C; Howell, C R; Crowell, A S; Reid, C D; Majewski, S

    2010-01-01

    There are opportunities for the development of new tools to advance plant biology research through the use of radionuclides. Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, Duke University, West Virginia University and the University of Maryland are collaborating on the development of radionuclide imaging technologies to facilitate plant biology research. Biological research into optimizing plant productivity under various environmental constraints, biofuel and carbon sequestration research are areas that could potentially benefit from new imaging technologies. Using 11CO2 tracers, the investigators at Triangle University Nuclear Laboratory / Duke University Phytotron are currently researching the dynamical responses of plants to environmental changes forecasted from increasing greenhouse trace gases involved in global change. The biological research primary focus is to investigate the impact of elevated atmospheric CO2 and nutrients limitation on carbon and nitrogen dynamics in plants. We report here on preliminary results of 11CO2 plant imaging experiments involving barley plants using Jefferson Lab dual planar positron emission tomography detectors to image 11CO2 in live barley plants. New detector designs will be developed based on the preliminary studies reported here and further planned.

  16. Plant Leachate Nutrient Recovery with Biological, Thermal, and Photocatalytic Pretreatments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Les

    2015-01-01

    Plants are ideal for long term space travel: provide essential resources - oxygen, water, food; Water-soaked plants expel soluble nutrients in a leachate solution - toxins and wastes are also expelled and inhibit growth; biological, thermal, photocatalytic coupled with an acid digestion treatment will hopefully maximize recovery and remove wastes

  17. Methods in molecular biology: plant cytogenetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cytogenetic studies have contributed greatly to our understanding of genetics, biology, reproduction, and evolution. From early studies in basic chromosome behavior the field has expanded enabling whole genome analysis to the manipulation of chromosomes and their organization. This book covers a ran...

  18. [Biological evaluation of Cuban plants VI].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiménez Misas, C A; Rojas Hernández, N M; López Abraham, A M

    1979-01-01

    The study of the antibacterial activity of plants growing in Cuba is pursued. Aqueous, alcoholic and ketonic extracts were prepared from five species, and it was found that the best inhibitions corresponded to the species Hamelia patens, Nephrolepis acuminata, Calocarpum sapota and Colocasia antiquorum.

  19. Circadian rhythms in biologically closed electrical circuits of plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volkov, Alexander; Waite, Astian J; Wooten, Joseph D; Markin, Vladislav S

    2012-02-01

    The circadian clock regulates a wide range of electrophysiological and developmental processes in plants. Here, we discuss the direct influence of a circadian clock on biologically closed electrochemical circuits in vivo. The biologically closed electrochemical circuits in the leaves of C. miniata (Kaffir lily), Aloe vera and Mimosa pudica, which regulate their physiology, were analyzed using the charge stimulation method. Plants are able to memorize daytime and nighttime. Even at continuous light or darkness, plants recognize nighttime or daytime and change the input resistance. The circadian clock can be maintained endogenously and has electrochemical oscillators, which can activate ion channels in biologically closed electrochemical circuits. The activation of voltage gated channels depends on the applied voltage, electrical charge, and the speed of transmission of electrical energy from the electrostimulator to plants.

  20. Old-field plant succession on the Pajarito Plateau

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Foxx, T.; Mullen, M.; Salisbury, M. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States); Tierney, G. [Tierney (Gail), Santa Fe, NM (United States)

    1997-10-01

    Eight fallow historic fields of the ponderosa pine and pinon-juniper cover types were surveyed to determine species composition and distribution. The purpose of the study was to understand plant succession on old fields as related to mechanically manipulated sites such as material disposal areas (MDAs). Additionally, the authors wanted a listing of species on disturbed lands of the Pajarito Plateau to aide in the reclamation planning of MDAs using native species. They also wanted to determine if any species could be used as an indicator of disturbance. The eight historic fields were all within Los Alamos County, New Mexico, and had been abandoned in 1943. Two sites were within the boundaries of Los Alamos National Laboratory and were studied both in 1982 and 1993. The study provides a description of each of the field sites, historic information about the homesteads from patent applications, a photographic record of some of the sites, and a listing of species found within each field. The study showed that there were 78 different plant species found on disturbed sites. Of these 78 species, 23 were found to be dominant on one or more of the MDAs or old fields. Although, the disturbance history of each site is imperfectly known, the study does provide an indication of successional processes within disturbed sites of the Pajarito Plateau. Additionally, it provides a listing of species that will invade disturbed sites, species that may be used in site reclamation.

  1. Successful biological control of tropical soda apple in Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tropical soda apple, Solanum viarum, is a small shrub native to tropical regions of Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. This weed was first found in Florida in 1988. In May 2003, a leaf feeding beetle, Gratiana boliviana, from South America was released in Florida as a biological control agent of tro...

  2. BIOLOGICAL CONTROL OF WEEDS BY MEANS OF PLANT PATHOGENS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marija Ravlić

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Biological control is the use of live beneficial organisms and products of their metabolism in the pests control. Plant pathogens can be used for weed control in three different ways: as classical, conservation and augmentative (inoculative and inundated biological control. Inundated biological control involves the use of bioherbicides (mycoherbicides or artificial breeding of pathogens and application in specific stages of crops and weeds. Biological control of weeds can be used where chemical herbicides are not allowed, if resistant weed species are present or in the integrated pest management against weeds with reduced herbicides doses and other non-chemical measures, but it has certain limitations and disadvantages.

  3. ALOUD biological: Adult Learning Open University Determinants study - Association of biological determinants with study success in formal lifelong learners

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gijselaers, Jérôme; De Groot, Renate; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2012-01-01

    Gijselaers, H. J. M., De Groot, R. H. M., & Kirschner, P. A. (2012, 15 March). ALOUD biological: Adult Learning Open University Determinants study - Association of biological determinants with study success in formal lifelong learners. Presentation given at the plenary meeting of Learning & Cognitio

  4. ALOUD biological: Adult Learning Open University Determinants study - Association of biological determinants with study success in formal lifelong learners

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gijselaers, Jérôme; De Groot, Renate; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2012-01-01

    Gijselaers, H. J. M., De Groot, R. H. M., & Kirschner, P. A. (2012, 15 March). ALOUD biological: Adult Learning Open University Determinants study - Association of biological determinants with study success in formal lifelong learners. Presentation given at the plenary meeting of Learning &

  5. Recent achievements and trends in experimental plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strzałka, Kazimierz

    2010-04-01

    Between 21 and 25 September 2009, Krakow hosted the 4th Conference of the Polish Society of Experimental Plant Biology, co-organized with the Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow, and supported by the Biochemical Society. The aim of the conference was to present and discuss the most important topics in different disciplines of plant experimental science as well as to facilitate the interaction and co-operation between scientists. To achieve this goal, about 30 top specialists in various areas of plant biology were invited to give plenary lectures in the following sessions: Plant structure and development; Plant-microbial interactions; Mitochondria and chloroplasts in cell metabolism; Stress tolerance in plants; Structural and functional organization of plant genomes; Mutants in developmental and metabolic studies; Secondary metabolites as pharmaceutics and nutraceutics; Plant membranes; and Integrating plant functions via signalling molecules: molecular mechanisms. Some of the main problems highlighted in the plenary lectures are briefly summarized in the present paper. Two poster sessions enabled a discussion of over 200 posters presented. The conference had an international character, its official language was English, and among the more than 350 participants, about 60 were from abroad. Several plenary lectures were prepared as short review papers and they are published in this issue of Biochemical Society Transactions.

  6. Phytochemicals and Their Biological Activities of Plants in Tagetes L.

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XU Li-wei; CHEN Juan; QI Huan-yang; SHI Yan-ping

    2012-01-01

    Tagetes L.,the genus in the family Asteraceae,consists of about 30 species spread in South and Middle America as well as Mexico.More than one hundred secondary metabolites have been obtained in phytochemical investigation on the species,some of which have potent biological activities.The advances in phytochemical studies and biological activities of the plants in Tagetes L.from 1925 to 2011 are summarized in this paper.

  7. A system for success: BMC Systems Biology, a new open access journal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Webb Penelope A

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract BMC Systems Biology is the first open access journal spanning the growing field of systems biology from molecules up to ecosystems. The journal has launched as more and more institutes are founded that are similarly dedicated to this new approach. BMC Systems Biology builds on the ongoing success of the BMC series, providing a venue for all sound research in the systems-level analysis of biology.

  8. Recombinant biologic products versus nutraceuticals from plants - a regulatory choice?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drake, Pascal M W; Szeto, Tim H; Paul, Mathew J; Teh, Audrey Y-H; Ma, Julian K-C

    2017-01-01

    Biotechnology has transformed the potential for plants to be a manufacturing source of pharmaceutical compounds. Now, with transgenic and transient expression techniques, virtually any biologic, including vaccines and therapeutics, could be manufactured in plants. However, uncertainty over the regulatory path for such new pharmaceuticals has been a deterrent. Consideration has been given to using alternative regulatory paths, including those for nutraceuticals or cosmetic agents. This review will consider these possibilities, and discuss the difficulties in establishing regulatory guidelines for new pharmaceutical manufacturing technologies.

  9. Method and apparatus to image biological interactions in plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weisenberger, Andrew; Bonito, Gregory M.; Reid, Chantal D.; Smith, Mark Frederick

    2015-12-22

    A method to dynamically image the actual translocation of molecular compounds of interest in a plant root, root system, and rhizosphere without disturbing the root or the soil. The technique makes use of radioactive isotopes as tracers to label molecules of interest and to image their distribution in the plant and/or soil. The method allows for the study and imaging of various biological and biochemical interactions in the rhizosphere of a plant, including, but not limited to, mycorrhizal associations in such regions.

  10. Integrated Network Analysis and Effective Tools in Plant Systems Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi eFukushima

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available One of the ultimate goals in plant systems biology is to elucidate the genotype-phenotype relationship in plant cellular systems. Integrated network analysis that combines omics data with mathematical models has received particular attention. Here we focus on the latest cutting-edge computational advances that facilitate their combination. We highlight (1 network visualization tools, (2 pathway analyses, (3 genome-scale metabolic reconstruction, and (4 the integration of high-throughput experimental data and mathematical models. Multi-omics data that contain the genome, transcriptome, proteome, and metabolome and mathematical models are expected to integrate and expand our knowledge of complex plant metabolisms.

  11. DNA assembly for plant biology: techniques and tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patron, Nicola J

    2014-06-01

    As the speed and accuracy of genome sequencing improves, there are ever-increasing resources available for the design and construction of synthetic DNA parts. These can be used to engineer plant genomes to produce new functions or to elucidate the function of endogenous sequences. Until recently the assembly of amplified or cloned sequences into large and complex designs was a limiting step in plant synthetic biology and biotechnology. A number of new methods for assembling DNA molecules have been developed in the last few years, several of which have been applied to the production of molecules used to modify plant genomes.

  12. Measuring management success for protected species: Looking beyond biological outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathryn D Bisack

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The complexity of the ocean ecosystem, including the human component, is such that a single fishery may require multiple policy instruments to support recovery and conservation of protected species, in addition to those for fisheries management. As regulations multiply, the need for retrospective analysis and evaluation grows in order to inform future policy. To accurately evaluate policy instruments, clear objectives and their link to outcomes are necessary, as well as identifying criteria to evaluate outcomes. The Northeast United States sink gillnet groundfish fishery provides a case study of the complexity of regulations and policy instruments implemented under the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Endangered Species Act to address bycatch of marine mammals. The case study illustrates a range of possible objectives for the policy instruments including biological, economic, social-normative and longevity factors. We highlight links between possible objectives, outcomes and criteria for the four factors, as well as areas for consideration when undertaking ex-post analyses. To support learning from past actions, we call for a coordinated effort involving multiple disciplines and jurisdictions to undertake retrospective analyses and evaluations of key groups of policy instruments used for protected species.

  13. Plant glyco-biotechnology on the way to synthetic biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas eLoos

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Plants are increasingly being used for the production of recombinant proteins. One reason is that plants are highly amenable for glycan engineering processes and allow the production of therapeutic proteins with increased efficacies due to optimized glycosylation profiles. Removal and insertion of glycosylation reactions by knock-out/knock-down approaches and introduction of glycosylation enzymes have paved the way for the humanization of the plant glycosylation pathway. The insertion of heterologous enzymes at exactly the right stage of the existing glycosylation pathway has turned out to be of utmost importance for optimal results. To enable such precise targeting chimeric enzymes have been constructed. In this short review we will exemplify the importance of correct targeting of glycosyltransferases, we will give an overview of the targeting mechanism of glycosyltransferases, describe chimeric enzymes used in plant N-glycosylation engineering and illustrate how plant glycoengineering builds on the tools offered by synthetic biology to construct such chimeric enzymes.

  14. Benchmarking Biological Nutrient Removal in Wastewater Treatment Plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Flores-Alsina, Xavier; Gernaey, Krist; Jeppsson, Ulf

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines the effect of different model assumptions when describing biological nutrient removal (BNR) by the activated sludge models (ASM) 1, 2d & 3. The performance of a nitrogen removal (WWTP1) and a combined nitrogen and phosphorus removal (WWTP2) benchmark wastewater treatment plant...

  15. Plant Biology and Biogeochemistry Department annual report 2000

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kossmann, J.; Gissel Nielsen, G.; Nielsen, K.K.;

    2001-01-01

    The Department of Plant Biology and Biogeochemistry is engaged in basic and applied research to improve the scientific basis for developing new methods and technology for an environmentally benign industrial and agricultural production in the future. TheDepartment's expertise covers a wide range...

  16. Biological mechanisms determining the success of RNA interference in insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wynant, Niels; Santos, Dulce; Vanden Broeck, Jozef

    2014-01-01

    Insects constitute the largest group of animals on this planet, having a huge impact on our environment, as well as on our quality of life. RNA interference (RNAi) is a posttranscriptional gene silencing mechanism triggered by double-stranded (ds)RNA fragments. This process not only forms the basis of a widely used reverse genetics research method in many different eukaryotes but also holds great promise to contribute to the species-specific control of agricultural pests and to combat viral infections in beneficial and disease vectoring insects. However, in many economically important insect species, such as flies, mosquitoes, and caterpillars, systemic delivery of naked dsRNA does not trigger effective gene silencing. Although many components of the RNAi pathway have initially been deciphered in the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, it will be of major importance to investigate this process in a wider variety of species, including dsRNA-sensitive insects such as locusts and beetles, to elucidate the factors responsible for the remarkable variability in RNAi efficiency, as observed in different insects. In this chapter, we review the current knowledge on the RNAi pathway, as well as the most recent insights into the mechanisms that might determine successful RNAi in insects.

  17. NASA Space Biology Plant Research for 2010-2020

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, H. G.; Tomko, D. L.; Porterfield, D. M.

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. National Research Council (NRC) recently published "Recapturing a Future for Space Exploration: Life and Physical Sciences Research for a New Era" (http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record id=13048), and NASA completed a Space Biology Science Plan to develop a strategy for implementing its recommendations ( http://www.nasa.gov/exploration/library/esmd documents.html). The most important recommendations of the NRC report on plant biology in space were that NASA should: (1) investigate the roles of microbial-plant systems in long-term bioregenerative life support systems, and (2) establish a robust spaceflight program of research analyzing plant growth and physiological responses to the multiple stimuli encountered in spaceflight environments. These efforts should take advantage of recently emerged analytical technologies (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics) and apply modern cellular and molecular approaches in the development of a vigorous flight-based and ground-based research program. This talk will describe NASA's strategy and plans for implementing these NRC Plant Space Biology recommendations. New research capabilities for Plant Biology, optimized by providing state-of-the-art automated technology and analytical techniques to maximize scientific return, will be described. Flight experiments will use the most appropriate platform to achieve science results (e.g., ISS, free flyers, sub-orbital flights) and NASA will work closely with its international partners and other U.S. agencies to achieve its objectives. One of NASA's highest priorities in Space Biology is the development research capabilities for use on the International Space Station and other flight platforms for studying multiple generations of large plants. NASA will issue recurring NASA Research Announcements (NRAs) that include a rapid turn-around model to more fully engage the biology community in designing experiments to respond to the NRC recommendations. In doing so, NASA

  18. Biological Fenton's oxidation of pentachlorophenol by aquatic plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reis, Andre Rodrigues dos; Kyuma, Yukako; Sakakibara, Yutaka

    2013-12-01

    This study proposes a new treatment method to decompose persistent chemicals such as pentachlorophenol (PCP) in water, utilizing hydrogen peroxide present in aquatic plants to proceed the biological Fenton reaction. PCP was not effectively removed by aquatic plants. However, by adding 2.8 mM of Fe(2+), there was a rapid removal of PCP while at the same time consumption of endogenous hydrogen peroxide occurred. It was observed the increase of chloride ions formation in water-confirming the complete degradation of PCP. These results demonstrated that PCP was oxidized through a biological Fenton reaction, and hydrogen peroxide in aquatic plants was a key endogenous substance in treatment of refractory toxic pollutants.

  19. Integrating cell biology and proteomic approaches in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takáč, Tomáš; Šamajová, Olga; Šamaj, Jozef

    2017-04-22

    Significant improvements of protein extraction, separation, mass spectrometry and bioinformatics nurtured advancements of proteomics during the past years. The usefulness of proteomics in the investigation of biological problems can be enhanced by integration with other experimental methods from cell biology, genetics, biochemistry, pharmacology, molecular biology and other omics approaches including transcriptomics and metabolomics. This review aims to summarize current trends integrating cell biology and proteomics in plant science. Cell biology approaches are most frequently used in proteomic studies investigating subcellular and developmental proteomes, however, they were also employed in proteomic studies exploring abiotic and biotic stress responses, vesicular transport, cytoskeleton and protein posttranslational modifications. They are used either for detailed cellular or ultrastructural characterization of the object subjected to proteomic study, validation of proteomic results or to expand proteomic data. In this respect, a broad spectrum of methods is employed to support proteomic studies including ultrastructural electron microscopy studies, histochemical staining, immunochemical localization, in vivo imaging of fluorescently tagged proteins and visualization of protein-protein interactions. Thus, cell biological observations on fixed or living cell compartments, cells, tissues and organs are feasible, and in some cases fundamental for the validation and complementation of proteomic data. Validation of proteomic data by independent experimental methods requires development of new complementary approaches. Benefits of cell biology methods and techniques are not sufficiently highlighted in current proteomic studies. This encouraged us to review most popular cell biology methods used in proteomic studies and to evaluate their relevance and potential for proteomic data validation and enrichment of purely proteomic analyses. We also provide examples of

  20. Adult Learning Open University Determinants study (ALOUD): Biological lifestyle factors associated with study success

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gijselaers, Jérôme; De Groot, Renate; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2012-01-01

    Gijselaers, H. J. M., De Groot, R. H. M., & Kirschner, P. A. (2012, 7 November). Adult Learning Open University Determinants study (ALOUD): Biological lifestyle factors associated with study success. Poster presentation at the International ICO Fall School, Girona, Spain.

  1. Augmenting Plant Immune Responses and Biological Control by Microbial Determinants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sang Moo Lee

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Plant have developed sophisticated defence mechanisms against microbial pathogens. The recent accumulated information allow us to understand the nature of plant immune responses followed by recognition of microbial factors/determinants through cutting-edge genomics and multi-omics techniques. However, the practical approaches to sustain plant health using enhancement of plant immunity is yet to be fully appreciated. Here, we overviewed the general concept and representative examples on the plant immunity. The fungal, bacterial, and viral determinants that was previously reported as the triggers of plant immune responses are introduced and described as the potential protocol of biological control. Specifically, the role of chitin, glucan, lipopolysaccharides/extracellular polysaccharides, microbe/pathogen-associated molecular pattern, antibiotics, mimic-phytohormones, N-acyl homoserine lactone, harpin, vitamins, and volatile organic compounds are considered. We hope that this review stimulates scientific community and farmers to broaden their knowledge on the microbial determinant-based biological control and to apply the technology on the integrated pest management program.

  2. Commercial teas highlight plant DNA barcode identification successes and obstacles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoeckle, Mark Y; Gamble, Catherine C; Kirpekar, Rohan; Young, Grace; Ahmed, Selena; Little, Damon P

    2011-01-01

    Appearance does not easily identify the dried plant fragments used to prepare teas to species. Here we test recovery of standard DNA barcodes for land plants from a large array of commercial tea products and analyze their performance in identifying tea constituents using existing databases. Most (90%) of 146 tea products yielded rbcL or matK barcodes using a standard protocol. Matching DNA identifications to listed ingredients was limited by incomplete databases for the two markers, shared or nearly identical barcodes among some species, and lack of standard common names for plant species. About 1/3 of herbal teas generated DNA identifications not found on labels. Broad scale adoption of plant DNA barcoding may require algorithms that place search results in context of standard plant names and character-based keys for distinguishing closely-related species. Demonstrating the importance of accessible plant barcoding, our findings indicate unlisted ingredients are common in herbal teas.

  3. Plant biology in reduced gravity on the Moon and Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiss, J Z

    2014-01-01

    While there have been numerous studies on the effects of microgravity on plant biology since the beginning of the Space Age, our knowledge of the effects of reduced gravity (less than the Earth nominal 1 g) on plant physiology and development is very limited. Since international space agencies have cited manned exploration of Moon/Mars as long-term goals, it is important to understand plant biology at the lunar (0.17 g) and Martian levels of gravity (0.38 g), as plants are likely to be part of bioregenerative life-support systems on these missions. First, the methods to obtain microgravity and reduced gravity such as drop towers, parabolic flights, sounding rockets and orbiting spacecraft are reviewed. Studies on gravitaxis and gravitropism in algae have suggested that the threshold level of gravity sensing is around 0.3 g or less. Recent experiments on the International Space Station (ISS) showed attenuation of phototropism in higher plants occurs at levels ranging from 0.l g to 0.3 g. Taken together, these studies suggest that the reduced gravity level on Mars of 0.38 g may be enough so that the gravity level per se would not be a major problem for plant development. Studies that have directly considered the impact of reduced gravity and microgravity on bioregenerative life-support systems have identified important biophysical changes in the reduced gravity environments that impact the design of these systems. The author suggests that the current ISS laboratory facilities with on-board centrifuges should be used as a test bed in which to explore the effects of reduced gravity on plant biology, including those factors that are directly related to developing life-support systems necessary for Moon and Mars exploration.

  4. Plant synthetic biology: a new platform for industrial biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fesenko, Elena; Edwards, Robert

    2014-05-01

    Thirty years after the production of the first generation of genetically modified plants we are now set to move into a new era of recombinant crop technology through the application of synthetic biology to engineer new and complex input and output traits. The use of synthetic biology technologies will represent more than incremental additions of transgenes, but rather the directed design of completely new metabolic pathways, physiological traits, and developmental control strategies. The need to enhance our ability to improve crops through new engineering capability is now increasingly pressing as we turn to plants not just for food, but as a source of renewable feedstocks for industry. These accelerating and diversifying demands for new output traits coincide with a need to reduce inputs and improve agricultural sustainability. Faced with such challenges, existing technologies will need to be supplemented with new and far-more-directed approaches to turn valuable resources more efficiently into usable agricultural products. While these objectives are challenging enough, the use of synthetic biology in crop improvement will face public acceptance issues as a legacy of genetically modified technologies in many countries. Here we review some of the potential benefits of adopting synthetic biology approaches in improving plant input and output traits for their use as industrial chemical feedstocks, as linked to the rapidly developing biorefining industry. Several promising technologies and biotechnological targets are identified along with some of the key regulatory and societal challenges in the safe and acceptable introduction of such technology.

  5. Succession change of microorganisms on plant waste decomposition in simulation modelling field experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinogradova, Julia; Perminova, Evgenia; Khabibullina, Fluza; Kovaleva, Vera; Lapteva, Elena

    2016-04-01

    Plant waste decomposition processes are closely associated with living activity of soil microbiota in aboveground ecosystems. Functional activity of microorganisms and soil invertebrates determines plant material transformation rate whereby changes in plant material chemical composition during destruction - succession change of soil biota. The purpose of the work was revealing the mechanism of microorganisms succession change during plant waste decomposition in middle-taiga green-moss spruce forests and coniferous-deciduous secondary stands formed after earlier cut bilberry spruce forests. The study materials were undisturbed bilberry spruce forest (Sample Plot 1 - SP1) and coniferous-deciduous secondary stands which were formed after tree cutting activities of 2001-2002 (SP2) and 1969 and 1970 (SP3). Plant material decomposition intensity was determined in microcosms isolated into kapron bags with cell size of 1 mm. At SP1 and SP2, test material was living mosses and at SP3 - fallen birch and aspen leaves. Every test material was exposed for 2 years. Destruction rate was calculated as a weight loss for a particular time period. Composition of micromycetes which participated in plant material decomposition was assessed by the method of inoculation of soil extract to Getchinson's medium and acidified Czapek's medium (pH=4.5). Microbe number and biomass was analyzed by the method of luminescent microscopy. Chemical analysis of plant material was done in the certified Ecoanalytical Laboratory of the Institute of Biology Komi SC UrD RAS. Finally, plant material destruction intensity was similar for study plots and comprised 40-44 % weight loss for 2 years. The strongest differences in plant material decomposition rate between undisturbed spruce forests and secondary after-cut stands were observed at first stages of destruction process. In the first exposition year, mineralizing processes were most active in undisturbed spruce forest. Decomposition rate in cuts at that

  6. Nuclear physics detector technology applied to plant biology research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weisenberger, Andrew G. [JLAB; Kross, Brian J. [JLAB; Lee, Seung Joo [JLAB; McKisson, John E. [JLAB; Xi, Wenze [JLAB; Zorn, Carl J. [JLAB; Howell, Calvin [DUKE; Crowell, A.S. [DUKE; Reid, C.D. [DUKE; Smith, Mark [MARYLAND U.

    2013-08-01

    The ability to detect the emissions of radioactive isotopes through radioactive decay (e.g. beta particles, x-rays and gamma-rays) has been used for over 80 years as a tracer method for studying natural phenomena. More recently a positron emitting radioisotope of carbon: {sup 11}C has been utilized as a {sup 11}CO{sub 2} tracer for plant ecophysiology research. Because of its ease of incorporation into the plant via photosynthesis, the {sup 11}CO{sub 2} radiotracer is a powerful tool for use in plant biology research. Positron emission tomography (PET) imaging has been used to study carbon transport in live plants using {sup 11}CO{sub 2}. Presently there are several groups developing and using new PET instrumentation for plant based studies. Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (Jefferson Lab) in collaboration with the Duke University Phytotron and the Triangle Universities Nuclear Laboratory (TUNL) is involved in PET detector development for plant imaging utilizing technologies developed for nuclear physics research. The latest developments of the use of a LYSO scintillator based PET detector system for {sup 11}CO{sub 2} tracer studies in plants will be briefly outlined.

  7. Biological effects due to weak magnetic field on plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belyavskaya, N. A.

    2004-01-01

    Throughout the evolution process, Earth's magnetic field (MF, about 50 μT) was a natural component of the environment for living organisms. Biological objects, flying on planned long-term interplanetary missions, would experience much weaker magnetic fields, since galactic MF is known to be 0.1-1 nT. However, the role of weak magnetic fields and their influence on functioning of biological organisms are still insufficiently understood, and is actively studied. Numerous experiments with seedlings of different plant species placed in weak magnetic field have shown that the growth of their primary roots is inhibited during early germination stages in comparison with control. The proliferative activity and cell reproduction in meristem of plant roots are reduced in weak magnetic field. Cell reproductive cycle slows down due to the expansion of G 1 phase in many plant species (and of G 2 phase in flax and lentil roots), while other phases of cell cycle remain relatively stabile. In plant cells exposed to weak magnetic field, the functional activity of genome at early pre-replicate period is shown to decrease. Weak magnetic field causes intensification of protein synthesis and disintegration in plant roots. At ultrastructural level, changes in distribution of condensed chromatin and nucleolus compactization in nuclei, noticeable accumulation of lipid bodies, development of a lytic compartment (vacuoles, cytosegresomes and paramural bodies), and reduction of phytoferritin in plastids in meristem cells were observed in pea roots exposed to weak magnetic field. Mitochondria were found to be very sensitive to weak magnetic field: their size and relative volume in cells increase, matrix becomes electron-transparent, and cristae reduce. Cytochemical studies indicate that cells of plant roots exposed to weak magnetic field show Ca 2+ over-saturation in all organelles and in cytoplasm unlike the control ones. The data presented suggest that prolonged exposures of plants to weak

  8. Plant Cell and Signaling Biology Blooms in the Wuyi Mountain

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jianping Hu

    2011-01-01

    @@ INTRODUCTION The Eighth International Conference on Plant Biology Fron-tiers, organized by Zhenbiao Yang, Chentao Lin, and Xing-wang Deng, was convened in the Wuyi Mountain Yeohwa Resort in Fujian, China, 23-27 September 2010.The meeting's main theme was Cells and Signals, featuring four keynote speeches, 45 plenary talks, and over 40 poster presentations that covered a wide range of topics, from dynamic cellular structures to how developmental and environmental signals control various plant processes at the juncture of cells.

  9. The potential of plants as a system for the development and production of human biologics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qiang; Davis, Keith R.

    2016-01-01

    The growing promise of plant-made biologics is highlighted by the success story of ZMapp™ as a potentially life-saving drug during the Ebola outbreak of 2014-2016. Current plant expression platforms offer features beyond the traditional advantages of low cost, high scalability, increased safety, and eukaryotic protein modification. Novel transient expression vectors have been developed that allow the production of vaccines and therapeutics at unprecedented speed to control potential pandemics or bioterrorism attacks. Plant-host engineering provides a method for producing proteins with unique and uniform mammalian post-translational modifications, providing opportunities to develop biologics with increased efficacy relative to their mammalian cell-produced counterparts. Recent demonstrations that plant-made proteins can function as biocontrol agents of foodborne pathogens further exemplify the potential utility of plant-based protein production. However, resolving the technical and regulatory challenges of commercial-scale production, garnering acceptance from large pharmaceutical companies, and obtaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for several major classes of biologics are essential steps to fulfilling the untapped potential of this technology. PMID:27274814

  10. The potential of plants as a system for the development and production of human biologics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Qiang; Davis, Keith R

    2016-01-01

    The growing promise of plant-made biologics is highlighted by the success story of ZMapp™ as a potentially life-saving drug during the Ebola outbreak of 2014-2016. Current plant expression platforms offer features beyond the traditional advantages of low cost, high scalability, increased safety, and eukaryotic protein modification. Novel transient expression vectors have been developed that allow the production of vaccines and therapeutics at unprecedented speed to control potential pandemics or bioterrorism attacks. Plant-host engineering provides a method for producing proteins with unique and uniform mammalian post-translational modifications, providing opportunities to develop biologics with increased efficacy relative to their mammalian cell-produced counterparts. Recent demonstrations that plant-made proteins can function as biocontrol agents of foodborne pathogens further exemplify the potential utility of plant-based protein production. However, resolving the technical and regulatory challenges of commercial-scale production, garnering acceptance from large pharmaceutical companies, and obtaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for several major classes of biologics are essential steps to fulfilling the untapped potential of this technology.

  11. Biological effects due to weak magnetic fields on plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belyavskaya, N.

    In the evolution process, living organisms have experienced the action of the Earth's magnetic field (MF) that is a natural component of our environment. It is known that a galactic MF induction does not exceed 0.1 nT, since investigations of weak magnetic field (WMF) effects on biological systems have attracted attention of biologists due to planning long-term space flights to other planets where the magnetizing force is near 10-5 Oe. However, the role of WMF and its influence on organisms' functioning are still insufficiently investigated. A large number of experiments with seedlings of different plant species placed in WMF has found that the growth of their primary roots is inhibited during the early terms of germination in comparison with control. The proliferation activity and cell reproduction are reduced in meristem of plant roots under WMF application. The prolongation of total cell reproductive cycle is registered due to the expansion of G phase in1 different plant species as well as of G phase in flax and lentil roots along with2 relative stability of time parameters of other phases of cell cycle. In plant cells exposed to WMF, the decrease in functional activity of genome at early prereplicate period is shown. WMF causes the intensification in the processes of proteins' synthesis and break-up in plant roots. Qualitative and quantitative changes in protein spectrum in growing and differentiated cells of plant roots exposed to WMF are revealed. At ultrastructural level, there are observed such ultrastructural peculiarities as changes in distribution of condensed chromatin and nucleolus compactization in nuclei, noticeable accumulation of lipid bodies, development of a lytic compartment (vacuoles, cytosegresomes and paramural bodies), and reduction of phytoferritin in plastids in meristem cells of pea roots exposed to WMF. Mitochondria are the most sensitive organelle to WMF application: their size and relative volume in cells increase, matrix is electron

  12. Plant Biology and Biogeochemistry Department annual report 1999

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, A.; Gissel Nielsen, G.; Giese, H.;

    2000-01-01

    The Department of Plant Biology and Biogeochemistry is engaged in basic and applied research to improve the scientific knowledge of developing new methods and technology for the future environmentally benign industrial and agricultural production, thusexerting less stress and strain on the enviro......The Department of Plant Biology and Biogeochemistry is engaged in basic and applied research to improve the scientific knowledge of developing new methods and technology for the future environmentally benign industrial and agricultural production, thusexerting less stress and strain...... summarizes and highlights our results and achievements to give an idea of the research directions in theDepartment. Some 160 persons, including staff, undergraduate students, post-graduate scientists and visiting scientists from all over the world, address our research goals....

  13. Dispersal of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and plants during succession

    Science.gov (United States)

    García de León, David; Moora, Mari; Öpik, Maarja; Jairus, Teele; Neuenkamp, Lena; Vasar, Martti; Bueno, C. Guillermo; Gerz, Maret; Davison, John; Zobel, Martin

    2016-11-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are important root symbionts that enhance plant nutrient uptake and tolerance to pathogens and drought. While the role of plant dispersal in shaping successional vegetation is well studied, there is very little information about the dispersal abilities of AM fungi. We conducted a trap-box experiment in a recently abandoned quarry at 10 different distances from the quarry edge (i.e. the potential propagule source) over eleven months to assess the short term, within-year, arrival of plant and AM fungal assemblages and hence their dispersal abilities. Using DNA based techniques we identified AM fungal taxa and analyzed their phylogenetic diversity. Plant diversity was determined by transporting trap soil to a greenhouse and identifying emerging seedlings. We recorded 30 AM fungal taxa. These contained a high proportion of ruderal AM fungi (30% of taxa, 79% of sequences) but the richness and abundance of AM fungi were not related to the distance from the presumed propagule source. The number of sequences of AM fungi decreased over time. Twenty seven plant species (30% of them ruderal) were recorded from the soil seed traps. Plant diversity decreased with distance from the propagule source and increased over time. Our data show that AM fungi with ruderal traits can be fast colonizers of early successional habitats.

  14. Sustainable operation of a biological wastewater treatment plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trikoilidou, E.; Samiotis, G.; Bellos, D.; Amanatidou, E.

    2016-11-01

    The sustainable operation of a biological wastewater treatment plant is significantly linked to its removal efficiency, cost of sludge management, energy consumption and monitoring cost. The biological treatment offers high organic removal efficiency, it also entails significant sludge production, which contains active (live) and inactive (dead) microorganisms and must be treated prior to final disposal, in order to prevent adverse impact on public health and environment. The efficiency of the activated sludge treatment process is correlated to an efficient solid-liquid separation, which is strongly depended on the biomass settling properties. The most commonly encountered settling problems in a wastewater treatment plant, which are usually associated with operating conditions and specific microorganisms growth, are sludge bulking, floating sludge, pin point flocs and straggler flocs. Sustainable management of sludge and less energy consumption are the two principal aspects that determine the operational cost of wastewater treatment plants. Sludge treatment and management accumulate more than 50% of the operating cost. Aerobic wastewater treatment plants have high energy requirements for covering the needs of aeration and recirculations. In order to ensure wastewater treatment plants’ effective operation, a large number of physicochemical parameters have to be monitored, thus further increasing the operational cost. As the operational parameters are linked to microbial population, a practical way of wastewater treatment plants’ controlling is the microscopic examination of sludge, which is proved to be an important tool for evaluating plants’ performance and assessing possible problems and symptoms. This study presents a biological wastewater treatment plant with almost zero biomass production, less energy consumption and a practical way for operation control through microbial manipulation and microscopic examination.

  15. Linking plant ecology and long-term hydrology to improve wetland restoration success

    Science.gov (United States)

    P.V. Caldwell; M.J. Vepraskas; J.D. Gregory; R.W. Skaggs; R.L. Huffman

    2011-01-01

    Although millions of dollars are spent restoring wetlands, failures are common, in part because the planted vegetation cannot survive in the restored hydrology. Wetland restoration would be more successful if the hydrologic requirements of wetland plant communities were known so that the most appropriate plants could be selected for the range of projected hydrology at...

  16. Charles Darwin and the origins of plant evolutionary developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friedman, William E; Diggle, Pamela K

    2011-04-01

    Much has been written of the early history of comparative embryology and its influence on the emergence of an evolutionary developmental perspective. However, this literature, which dates back nearly a century, has been focused on metazoans, without acknowledgment of the contributions of comparative plant morphologists to the creation of a developmental view of biodiversity. We trace the origin of comparative plant developmental morphology from its inception in the eighteenth century works of Wolff and Goethe, through the mid nineteenth century discoveries of the general principles of leaf and floral organ morphogenesis. Much like the stimulus that von Baer provided as a nonevolutionary comparative embryologist to the creation of an evolutionary developmental view of animals, the comparative developmental studies of plant morphologists were the basis for the first articulation of the concept that plant (namely floral) evolution results from successive modifications of ontogeny. Perhaps most surprisingly, we show that the first person to carefully read and internalize the remarkable advances in the understanding of plant morphogenesis in the 1840s and 1850s is none other than Charles Darwin, whose notebooks, correspondence, and (then) unpublished manuscripts clearly demonstrate that he had discovered the developmental basis for the evolutionary transformation of plant form.

  17. Temporal variation in plant-soil feedback controls succession

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kardol, P.; Bezemer, T.M.; Putten, van der W.H.

    2006-01-01

    Soil abiotic and biotic factors play key roles in plant community dynamics. However, little is known about how soil biota influence vegetation changes over time. Here, we show that the effects of soil organisms may depend on both the successional development of ecosystems and on the successional pos

  18. Innovative Technology Reduces Power Plant Emissions - Commercialization Success

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parrish, Clyde

    2004-01-01

    Emission control system development includes: (1) Development of new oxidizer scrubber system to eliminate NOx waste and produce fertilizer (2) Technology licensed and a 1 to 3 MWatt-scale prototype installed on. power plant (3) Development of method to oxidize NO. to N02 (4) Experience gained from licensing NASA technology

  19. Biological control of invasive plant species: a reassessment for the Anthropocene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seastedt, Timothy R

    2015-01-01

    The science of finding, testing and releasing herbivores and pathogens to control invasive plant species has achieved a level of maturity and success that argues for continued and expanded use of this program. The practice, however, remains unpopular with some conservationists, invasion biologists, and stakeholders. The ecological and economic benefits of controlling densities of problematic plant species using biological control agents can be quantified, but the risks and net benefits of biological control programs are often derived from social or cultural rather than scientific criteria. Management of invasive plants is a 'wicked problem', and local outcomes to wicked problems have both positive and negative consequences differentially affecting various groups of stakeholders. The program has inherent uncertainties; inserting species into communities that are experiencing directional or even transformational changes can produce multiple outcomes due to context-specific factors that are further confounded by environmental change drivers. Despite these uncertainties, biological control could play a larger role in mitigation and adaptation strategies used to maintain biological diversity as well as contribute to human well-being by protecting food and fiber resources.

  20. Biosynthesis and biological functions of terpenoids in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tholl, Dorothea

    2015-01-01

    Terpenoids (isoprenoids) represent the largest and most diverse class of chemicals among the myriad compounds produced by plants. Plants employ terpenoid metabolites for a variety of basic functions in growth and development but use the majority of terpenoids for more specialized chemical interactions and protection in the abiotic and biotic environment. Traditionally, plant-based terpenoids have been used by humans in the food, pharmaceutical, and chemical industries, and more recently have been exploited in the development of biofuel products. Genomic resources and emerging tools in synthetic biology facilitate the metabolic engineering of high-value terpenoid products in plants and microbes. Moreover, the ecological importance of terpenoids has gained increased attention to develop strategies for sustainable pest control and abiotic stress protection. Together, these efforts require a continuous growth in knowledge of the complex metabolic and molecular regulatory networks in terpenoid biosynthesis. This chapter gives an overview and highlights recent advances in our understanding of the organization, regulation, and diversification of core and specialized terpenoid metabolic pathways, and addresses the most important functions of volatile and nonvolatile terpenoid specialized metabolites in plants.

  1. Power plant project success through total productive generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaivola, R.; Tamminen, L.

    1996-11-01

    The Total Productive Generation concept (TPG) defines the lines of action adopted by IVO Generation Services Ltd (IGS) for the operation and maintenance of power plants. The TPG concept is based on procedures tested in practice. The main idea of TPG is continuous development of quality, which is a joint effort of the entire staff. Its objective is to benefit IGS`s own staff and, in particular, the company`s customers. (orig.)

  2. Power plant project success through total productive generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaivola, R.; Tamminen, L.

    1996-11-01

    The Total Productive Generation concept (TPG) defines the lines of action adopted by IVO Generation Services Ltd (IGS) for the operation and maintenance of power plants. The TPG concept is based on procedures tested in practice. The main idea of TPG is continuous development of quality, which is a joint effort of the entire staff. Its objective is to benefit IGS`s own staff and, in particular, the company`s customers. (orig.)

  3. Arctic Late Cretaceous and Paleocene Plant Community Succession

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, Alexei; Spicer, Robert; Daly, Robert; Jolley, David; Ahlberg, Anders; Moiseeva, Maria

    2010-05-01

    The Arctic abounds with Late Cretaceous and Paleocene plant fossils attesting to a thriving, diverse, but now extinct polar ecosystem that sequestered vast amounts of carbon. Through detailed examination of plant remains and their distributions in time and space with respect to their entombing sedimentary facies, it has been possible to reconstruct changes in Arctic vegetation composition and dynamics through the Late Cretaceous and into the Paleocene. Based on over 10,000 leaf remains, fossil wood and palynomorph assemblages from northeastern Russia and northern Alaska and palynological data from elsewhere in the Arctic we identify a number of successional plant communities (SPCs) representing seral development from early (pioneer), through middle to late SPCs and climax vegetation. We recognise that (1) Equisetites and some ferns (typically Birisia, but after the beginning of the Maastrichtian, Onoclea) were obligatory components of the early SPCs; (2) first rare angiosperms (e.g. the dicot Vitiphyllum multifidum) appeared in the middle SPCs of the Arctic in the Early - Middle Albian; (3) from late Albian times onwards angiosperms became abundant in the middle SPCs of the Arctic, but were still rare in the earlier and later SPCs; (4) monocots appeared in the Maastrichtian early SPCs; (5) all Arctic Cretaceous late SPCs (and climax vegetation) were dominated by conifers; (6) Arctic SPCs were more numerous and diverse under warm climates than cold; (7) during the Albian and late Cretaceous, advanced (Cenophytic, angiosperm-dominated) plant communities coexisted with those of a more relictual (Mesophytic, dominated by ferns and gymnosperms) aspect, and plants composing these communities did not mix; (8) coal-forming environments (mires) remained conifer, fern and bryophyte dominated throughout the late Cretaceous and Paleocene with little penetration of woody angiosperm components and thus are conservative and predominantly Mesophytic in character; (9) bryophytes

  4. Micrasterias as a Model System in Plant Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lütz-Meindl, Ursula

    2016-01-01

    The unicellular freshwater alga Micrasterias denticulata is an exceptional organism due to its complex star-shaped, highly symmetric morphology and has thus attracted the interest of researchers for many decades. As a member of the Streptophyta, Micrasterias is not only genetically closely related to higher land plants but shares common features with them in many physiological and cell biological aspects. These facts, together with its considerable cell size of about 200 μm, its modest cultivation conditions and the uncomplicated accessibility particularly to any microscopic techniques, make Micrasterias a very well suited cell biological plant model system. The review focuses particularly on cell wall formation and composition, dictyosomal structure and function, cytoskeleton control of growth and morphogenesis as well as on ionic regulation and signal transduction. It has been also shown in the recent years that Micrasterias is a highly sensitive indicator for environmental stress impact such as heavy metals, high salinity, oxidative stress or starvation. Stress induced organelle degradation, autophagy, adaption and detoxification mechanisms have moved in the center of interest and have been investigated with modern microscopic techniques such as 3-D- and analytical electron microscopy as well as with biochemical, physiological and molecular approaches. This review is intended to summarize and discuss the most important results obtained in Micrasterias in the last 20 years and to compare the results to similar processes in higher plant cells. PMID:27462330

  5. Micrasterias as a model system in plant cell biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ursula Luetz-Meindl

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The unicellular freshwater alga Micrasterias denticulata is an exceptional organism due to its extraordinary star-shaped, highly symmetric morphology and has thus attracted the interest of researchers for many decades. As a member of the Streptophyta, Micrasterias is not only genetically closely related to higher land plants but shares common features with them in many physiological and cell biological aspects. These facts, together with its considerable cell size of about 200 µm, its modest cultivation conditions and the uncomplicated accessibility particularly to any microscopic techniques, make Micrasterias a very well suited cell biological plant model system. The review focuses particularly on cell wall formation and composition, dictyosomal structure and function, cytoskeleton control of growth and morphogenesis as well as on ionic regulation and signal transduction. It has been also shown in the recent years that Micrasterias is a highly sensitive indicator for environmental stress impact such as heavy metals, high salinity, oxidative stress or starvation. Stress induced organelle degradation, autophagy, adaption and detoxification mechanisms have moved in the center of interest and have been investigated with modern microscopic techniques such as 3-D- and analytical electron microscopy as well as with biochemical, physiological and molecular approaches. This review is intended to summarize and discuss the most important results obtained in Micrasterias in the last 20 years and to compare the results to similar processes in higher plant cells.

  6. A theoretical framework for biological control of soil-borne plant pathogens: Identifying effective strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cunniffe, Nik J; Gilligan, Christopher A

    2011-06-07

    We develop and analyse a flexible compartmental model of the interaction between a plant host, a soil-borne pathogen and a microbial antagonist, for use in optimising biological control. By extracting invasion and persistence thresholds of host, pathogen and biological control agent, performing an equilibrium analysis, and numerical investigation of sensitivity to parameters and initial conditions, we determine criteria for successful biological control. We identify conditions for biological control (i) to prevent a pathogen entering a system, (ii) to eradicate a pathogen that is already present and, if that is not possible, (iii) to reduce the density of the pathogen. Control depends upon the epidemiology of the pathogen and how efficiently the antagonist can colonise particular habitats (i.e. healthy tissue, infected tissue and/or soil-borne inoculum). A sharp transition between totally effective control (i.e. eradication of the pathogen) and totally ineffective control can follow slight changes in biologically interpretable parameters or to the initial amounts of pathogen and biological control agent present. Effective biological control requires careful matching of antagonists to pathosystems. For preventative/eradicative control, antagonists must colonise susceptible hosts. However, for reduction in disease prevalence, the range of habitat is less important than the antagonist's bulking-up efficiency.

  7. Plant biology in space: recent accomplishments and recommendations for future research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruyters, G; Braun, M

    2014-01-01

    Gravity has shaped the evolution of life since its origin. However, experiments in the absence of this overriding force, necessary to precisely analyse its role, e.g. for growth, development, and orientation of plants and single cells, only became possible with the advent of spaceflight. Consequently, this research has been supported especially by space agencies around the world for decades, mainly for two reasons: first, to enable fundamental research on gravity perception and transduction during growth and development of plants; and second, to successfully grow plants under microgravity conditions with the goal of establishing a bioregenerative life support system providing oxygen and food for astronauts in long-term exploratory missions. For the second time, the International Space Life Sciences Working Group (ISLSWG), comprised of space agencies with substantial life sciences programmes in the world, organised a workshop on plant biology research in space. The present contribution summarises the outcome of this workshop. In the first part, an analysis is undertaken, if and how the recommendations of the first workshop held in Bad Honnef, Germany, in 1996 have been implemented. A chapter summarising major scientific breakthroughs obtained in the last 15 years from plant research in space concludes this first part. In the second part, recommendations for future research in plant biology in space are put together that have been elaborated in the various discussion sessions during the workshop, as well as provided in written statements from the session chairs. The present paper clearly shows that plant biology in space has contributed significantly to progress in plant gravity perception, transduction and responses - processes also relevant for general plant biology, including agricultural aspects. In addition, the interplay between light and gravity effects has increasingly received attention. It also became evident that plants will play a major role as

  8. Analyses of Sexual Reproductive Success in Transgenic and/or Mutant Plants

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Cristiane P. G. Calixto; Gustavo H. Goldman; Maria Helena S. Goldman

    2009-01-01

    The pistil, the female reproductive organ of plants, is a key player in the success of sexual plant reproduction. Ultimately, the production of fruits and seeds depends on the proper pistil development and function. Therefore, the identification and characterization of pistil expressed genes is essential for a better understanding and manipulation of the plant reproduction process. For studying the function of pistil expressed genes, transgenic and/or mutant plants for the genes of interest are used. The present article provides a review of methods already exploited to analyze sexual reproductive success. We Intend to sup ply useful information and to guide future experiments in thestudy of genes affecting pistil development and function.

  9. Biological activity of selected plants with adaptogenic effect

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Ivanišová

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to determine biological activity of plants with adaptogenic effect: Panax ginseng Mayer., Withania somnifera L., Eleuterococcus senticosus Rupr. et Maxim., Astragallus membranaceus Fisch. and Codonopsis pilosulae Franch. The antioxidant activity was detected by DPPH and phosphomolybdenum method, total polyphenol content with Folin – Ciocalteu reagent, flavonoids content by aluminium chloride method. The detection of antimicrobial activity was carried out by disc diffusion method against three species of Gram-negative bacteria: Escherichia coli CCM 3988, Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica CCM 3807, Yersinia enterocolitica CCM 5671 and two Gram-positive bacteria: Bacillus thuringiensis CCM 19, Stapylococcus aureus subsp. aureus CCM 2461. Results showed that plants with adaptogenic effect are rich for biologically active substances. The highest antioxidant activity by DPPH method was determined in the sample of Eleuterococcus senticosus (3.15 mg TEAC – Trolox equivalent antioxidant capacity per g of sample and by phosphomolybdenum method in the sample of Codonopsis pilosulae (188.79 mg TEAC per g of sample. In the sample of Panax ginseng was measured the highest content of total polyphenols (8.10 mg GAE – galic acid equivalent per g of sample and flavonoids (3.41 μg QE – quercetin equivalent per g of sample. All samples also showed strong antimicrobial activity with the best results in Panax ginseng and Withania somnifera in particular for species Yersinia enterocolitica CCM 5671 and Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica CCM 3807. The analyzed species of plant with high value of biological activity can be used more in the future, not only in food, but also in cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries.

  10. Biological Synthesis of Nanoparticles from Plants and Microorganisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Priyanka; Kim, Yu-Jin; Zhang, Dabing; Yang, Deok-Chun

    2016-07-01

    Nanotechnology has become one of the most promising technologies applied in all areas of science. Metal nanoparticles produced by nanotechnology have received global attention due to their extensive applications in the biomedical and physiochemical fields. Recently, synthesizing metal nanoparticles using microorganisms and plants has been extensively studied and has been recognized as a green and efficient way for further exploiting microorganisms as convenient nanofactories. Here, we explore and detail the potential uses of various biological sources for nanoparticle synthesis and the application of those nanoparticles. Furthermore, we highlight recent milestones achieved for the biogenic synthesis of nanoparticles by controlling critical parameters, including the choice of biological source, incubation period, pH, and temperature.

  11. The Plant Polyester Cutin: Biosynthesis, Structure, and Biological Roles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fich, Eric A; Segerson, Nicholas A; Rose, Jocelyn K C

    2016-04-29

    Cutin, a polyester composed mostly of oxygenated fatty acids, serves as the framework of the plant cuticle. The same types of cutin monomers occur across most plant lineages, although some evolutionary trends are evident. Additionally, cutins from some species have monomer profiles that are characteristic of the related polymer suberin. Compositional differences likely have profound structural consequences, but little is known about cutin's molecular organization and architectural heterogeneity. Its biological importance is suggested by the wide variety of associated mutants and gene-silencing lines that show a disruption of cuticular integrity, giving rise to numerous physiological and developmental abnormalities. Mapping and characterization of these mutants, along with suppression of gene paralogs through RNA interference, have revealed much of the biosynthetic pathway and several regulatory factors; however, the mechanisms of cutin polymerization and its interactions with other cuticle and cell wall components are only now beginning to be resolved.

  12. Molecular biology of gibberellins signaling in higher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Itoh, Hironori; Ueguchi-Tanaka, Miyako; Matsuoka, Makoto

    2008-01-01

    Gibberellins (GAs), a large family of tetracyclic, diterpenoid plant hormones, play an important role in regulating diverse processes throughout plant development. In recent years, significant advances have been made in the isolation of GA signaling components and GA-responsive genes. All available data have indicated that DELLA proteins are an essential negative regulator in the GA signaling pathway and GA derepresses DELLA-mediated growth suppression by inducing degradation of DELLA proteins through the ubiquitin-26S proteasome proteolytic pathway. Identification of GID1, a gene encoding an unknown protein with similarity to hormone-sensitive lipases, has revealed that GID1 acts as a functional GA receptor with a reasonable binding affinity to biologically active GAs. Furthermore, the GID1 receptor interacts with DELLA proteins in a GA-dependent manner. These results suggest that formation of a GID1-GA-DELLA protein complex targets DELLA protein into the ubiquitin-26S proteasome pathway for degradation.

  13. Biological aspects of Leucothyreus alvarengai Frey and Leucothyreus aff. semipruinosus Ohaus (Coleoptera, Melolonthidae, Rutelinae in crop succession at central Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex Furquim Pereira

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Biological aspects of Leucothyreus alvarengai Frey and Leucothyreus aff. semipruinosus Ohaus (Coleoptera, Melolonthidae, Rutelinae in crop succession at central Brazil. Beetles of the family Melolonthidae make up a large group and some species are considered pests of planted crops. Little information is available on the basic biological aspects of the genus Leucothyreus, such as association with cultivated crops and their occurrence periods. Therefore studies were developed in soybean and corn crops in Tangará da Serra, Mato Grosso, Brazil, with the objective of studying the occurrence and biological aspects of Leucothyreus alvarengai Frey and Leucothyreus aff. semipruinosus Ohaus. For acquisition of immature specimens of both species, in April 2011 sampling was performed in corn fields, in July and October in the fallow area, and in soybeans fields planted in December; in 2012 sampling was performed in January and February in soybean fields and in March in corn fields. In 2011 the total number of larvae obtained in April, July, October and December were 100, 6, 30 and 27, and in January, February and March of 2012 these quantities were 32, 52 and 65 larvae, respectively. In all sampling events the larvae of L. alvarengai were collected in greater quantity. At the beginning of the reproductive period of L. alvarengai and L. aff. semipruinosus, it was observed that the adults began to fly and soon after started oviposition in the field in September. The appearance of larvae coincides with the time of soybean planting in the field, thus the larvae feed on roots of soybean plants at the beginning of their development and the cycle from egg to adult of the two species was completed in one year.

  14. Knowledge about plant is basis for successful cultivation : new international standard handbook on plant physiology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Esch, van H.; Heuvelink, E.; Kierkels, T.

    2015-01-01

    Plant physiology in Greenhouses’ is the new international standard handbook on plant knowledge for the commercial greenhouse grower. It relates the functioning of the plant to the rapid developments in greenhouse cultivation. It is based on a continuing series of plant physiology articles published

  15. Biological activity of diterpenoids isolated from Anatolian Lamiaceae Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gülaçtı Topçu

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available In this study, antibacterial, antifungal, antimycobacterial, cytotoxic, antitumor, cardiovascular, antifeedant, insecticidal, antileishmanial and some other single activities of diterpenoids and norditerpenoids isolated from Turkish Lamiaceae plants, are reviewed. The diterpenoids were isolated from species of Salvia, Sideritis, and Ballota species growing in Anatolia. Fifty abietanes, ten kaurenes, seven pimaranes, six labdanes with their biological activities were reported. While twenty five diterpenoids showed antibacterial activity, eight of which showed activity against fungi. The most cytotoxic one was found to be taxodione (44 isolated from species of Salvia. Antifeedant, insecticidal and insect repellent activity of kaurenes, antimycobacterial activity and cardioactivity of abietanes and norabietanes together with labdanes were also reported.

  16. Biological Action of Plant Extracts on a Fungal Plant Biostimulant Strain of Trichoderma Viride

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Şesan Tatiana Eugenia

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The antifungal activity of nine plant extracts manufactured by Hofigal Import Export S.A. Romania against the biocontrol fungal agent Trichoderma viride Pers. (isolate Tv 82 was assessed in vitro for the first time in Romania. In general, the development (mycelial growth and sporulation was not inhibited by the six plant extracts (Satureja hortensis, Achillea millefolium, Allium sativum, Mentha sp., Hyssopus officinalis, Artemisia dracunculus 'Sativa', with three exceptions (Rosmarinus officinalis, Valeriana officinalis, Tagetes patula, applied in a concentration of 20%. Among these, the extract of Tagetes patula has inhibited the Tv 82 development, applied as lower concentrations (10% and 5%, efficacy being 54.3% and 50%, respectively. In addition, the tested plant extracts of Satureja hortensis, Achillea millefolium, Mentha sp. proved stimulative effect on Tv 82 development. This approach add to the early studies on the selectivity of Trichoderma spp. to chemicals used in plant protection, new data referring to the use of antagonistic fungi, like Trichoderma spp., as a protective mean against phytopathogens. Also, these data sustain the possibility of applying plant extracts as an alternative in plant protection or to apply together chemical (pesticides and biological means (plant extracts especially to protect ecological crops, as vegetables, medicinal plants a.o.

  17. The Success of Biogas Plants in Nepal: A Note on Gender

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Opdam, J. Hans M.

    1997-01-01

    This article describes a successful programme to disseminate biogas plants in Nepal, and summarises the findings of various studies on the impact of the biogas technology on the quality of life of women.

  18. The success of biogas plants in Nepal: a note on gender

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Opdam, J.H.M.

    1997-01-01

    This article describes a successful programme to disseminate biogas plants in Nepal, and summarises the findings of various studies on the impact of the biogas technology on the quality of life of women.

  19. Personality Factors and Nuclear Power Plant Operators: Initial License Success

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeVita-Cochrane, Cynthia

    Commercial nuclear power utilities are under pressure to effectively recruit and retain licensed reactor operators in light of poor candidate training completion rates and recent candidate failures on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) license exam. One candidate failure can cost a utility over $400,000, making the successful licensing of new operators a critical path to operational excellence. This study was designed to discover if the NEO-PI-3, a 5-factor measure of personality, could improve selection in nuclear utilities by identifying personality factors that predict license candidate success. Two large U.S. commercial nuclear power corporations provided potential participant contact information and candidate results on the 2014 NRC exam from their nuclear power units nation-wide. License candidates who participated (n = 75) completed the NEO-PI-3 personality test and results were compared to 3 outcomes on the NRC exam: written exam, simulated operating exam, and overall exam result. Significant correlations were found between several personality factors and both written and operating exam outcomes on the NRC exam. Further, a regression analysis indicated that personality factors, particularly Conscientiousness, predicted simulated operating exam scores. The results of this study may be used to support the use of the NEO-PI-3 to improve operator selection as an addition to the current selection protocol. Positive social change implications from this study include support for the use of a personality measure by utilities to improve their return-on-investment in candidates and by individual candidates to avoid career failures. The results of this study may also positively impact the public by supporting the safe and reliable operation of commercial nuclear power utilities in the United States.

  20. 2012 Gordon Research Conference, Plant molecular biology, July 15-20 2012

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sussman, Michael R. [Univ. of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (United States)

    2013-07-20

    The 2012 Gordon Conference on Plant Molecular Biology will present cutting-edge research on molecular aspects of plant growth and development, with particular emphasis on recent discoveries in molecular mechanisms involved with plant signaling systems. The Conference will feature a wide range of topics in plant molecular biology including hormone receptors and early events in hormone signaling, plant perception of and response to plant pathogen and symbionts, as well as technological and biological aspects of epigenomics particularly as it relates to signaling systems that regulate plant growth and development. Genomic approaches to plant signaling will be emphasized, including genomic profiling technologies for quantifying various biological subsystems, such as the epigenome, transcriptome, phosphorylome, and metabolome. The meeting will include an important session devoted to answering the question, "What are the biological and technological limits of plant breeding/genetics, and how can they be solved"?

  1. Stable heterologous expression of biologically active terpenoids in green plant cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Binti Khairul Ikram, Nur Kusaira; Zhan, Xin; Pan, Xiwu;

    2015-01-01

    many steps and difficult chemical reactions, resulting in a low final yield or incorrect stereochemistry. Several drug candidates with terpene skeletons are difficult to obtain by chemical synthesis due to their large number of chiral centers. Thus, biological production remains the preferred method...... in heterologous hosts. Although there are many examples of successful engineering of microbes such as yeast or bacteria to produce these compounds, this often requires extensive changes to the host organism's metabolism. Optimization of plant gene expression, post-translational protein modifications, subcellular...

  2. Biological significance of complex N-glycans in plants and their impact on plant physiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard eStrasser

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Asparagine (N-linked protein glycosylation is a ubiquitous co- and post-translational modification which can alter the biological function of proteins and consequently affects the development, growth and physiology of organisms. Despite an increasing knowledge of N-glycan biosynthesis and processing, we still understand very little about the biological function of individual N-glycan structures in plants. In particular, the N-glycan processing steps mediated by Golgi-resident enzymes create a structurally diverse set of protein-linked carbohydrate structures. Some of these complex N-glycan modifications like the presence of beta1,2-xylose, core alpha1,3-fucose or the Lewis a-epitope are characteristic for plants and are evolutionary highly conserved. In mammals, complex N-glycans are involved in different cellular processes including molecular recognition and signalling events. By contrast, the complex N-glycan function is still largely unknown in plants. Here, in this short review I focus on important recent developments and discuss their implications for future research in plant glycobiology and plant biotechnology.

  3. Studying Plant-Rhizobium Mutualism in the Biology Classroom: Connecting the Big Ideas in Biology through Inquiry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suwa, Tomomi; Williamson, Brad

    2014-01-01

    We present a guided-inquiry biology lesson, using the plant-rhizobium symbiosis as a model system. This system provides a rich environment for developing connections between the big ideas in biology as outlined in the College Board's new AP Biology Curriculum. Students gain experience with the practice of scientific investigation, from…

  4. Studying Plant-Rhizobium Mutualism in the Biology Classroom: Connecting the Big Ideas in Biology through Inquiry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suwa, Tomomi; Williamson, Brad

    2014-01-01

    We present a guided-inquiry biology lesson, using the plant-rhizobium symbiosis as a model system. This system provides a rich environment for developing connections between the big ideas in biology as outlined in the College Board's new AP Biology Curriculum. Students gain experience with the practice of scientific investigation, from…

  5. The importance of edaphic niches and pioneer plant species succession for the phytomanagement of mine tailings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parraga-Aguado, Isabel; Gonzalez-Alcaraz, Maria Nazaret; Alvarez-Rogel, Jose; Jimenez-Carceles, Francisco J; Conesa, Hector M

    2013-05-01

    Phytomanagement in terms of phytostabilisation is considered a suitable method to decrease environmental risks of metal(loid) enriched mine tailings. The goal of this study was to identify plant-favourable edaphic niches in mine tailings from a semiarid area, in order to obtain relevant information for further phytostabilisation procedures. For this purpose, a transect-designed sampling from non-disturbed soils to two mine tailings was performed, including the description of soil and plant ecology gradients. Plant ecological indicators showed several stages in plant succession: from weeds to stable patches of late successional plant species. PCA results revealed that plant distribution at the tailings was driven mainly by salinity while metal(loid) concentrations played a minor role. The presence of soil desiccation cracks generated low salinity patches which facilitated favourable niches for plant establishment. Edaphic-patch distribution may condition phytostabilisation since ploughing or the employment of certain amendments should take into account favourable niches for plant growth.

  6. Knowledge about plant is basis for successful cultivation : new international standard handbook on plant physiology

    OpenAIRE

    de Esch,, Hubert P. L.; Heuvelink, E.; Kierkels, T.

    2015-01-01

    Plant physiology in Greenhouses’ is the new international standard handbook on plant knowledge for the commercial greenhouse grower. It relates the functioning of the plant to the rapid developments in greenhouse cultivation. It is based on a continuing series of plant physiology articles published in the Dutch journal Onder Glas and the international edition In Greenhouses, written by Ep Heuvelink and Tijs Kierkels.

  7. Biology of Diaphorina citri (Homoptera: Psyllidae) on four host plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, J H; Liu, Y H

    2000-12-01

    The biology of the citrus psyllid Diaphorina citri Kuwayama was studied at 25 degrees C on four commonly grown citrus and related plants [rough lemon, Citrus jambhiri Lush; sour orange, C aurantium L.; grapefruit, C. paradisi Macfadyen; and orange jessamine, Murraya paniculata (L.) Jack] in the laboratory. The biological characteristics of each life stage are described. The average egg incubation periods on orange jessamine, grapefruit, rough lemon, and sour orange varied very little (4.1-4.2 d). The average nymphal developmental periods on these four host plants were essentially the same except the fifth stadium. Survival of immatures on orange jessamine, grapefruit, rough lemon, and sour orange was 75.4, 84.6, 78.3, and 68.6%, respectively. Female adults lived an average of 39.7, 39.7, 47.6, and 43.7 d on these respective host plants. The average number of eggs laid per female on grapefruit (858 eggs) was significantly more than those on other hosts (P < 0.05). The intrinsic rate of natural increase (r(m)) for D. citri on grapefruit was highest. Jackknife estimates of r(m) varied from 0.188 on grapefruit to 0.162 on orange jessamine and rough lemon. The mean population generation time on these hosts ranged from 31.6 to 34.1 d. The continuous flushes produced by orange jessamine could play an important role in maintaining high populations of this vector when the new flushes are not available in the commercial citrus groves.

  8. Plant and soil nutrient stoichiometry along primary ecological successions: Is there any link?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Palo, Francesca; Fornara, Dario A

    2017-01-01

    Ecological stoichiometry suggests that plant Nitrogen (N)-to-Phosphorus (P) ratios respond to changes in both soil N:P stoichiometry and soil N and P availability. Thus we would expect that soil and plant N:P ratios be significantly related along natural gradients of soil development such as those associated with primary ecological successions. Here we explicitly search for linkages between plant and soil N:P stoichiometry along four primary successions distributed across Europe. We measured N and P content in soils and plant compartments (leaf, stem and root) of 72 wild plant species distributed along two sand dune and two glacier successions where soil age ranges from few to thousand years old. Overall we found that soil N:P ratios strongly increased along successional stages, however, plant N:P ratios were neither related to soil N:P stoichiometry nor to changes in soil N and P availability. Instead changes in plant nutrient stoichiometry were "driven" by plant-functional-group identity. Not only N:P ratios differed between legumes, grasses and forbs but each of these plant functional groups maintained N:P ratios relatively constant across pioneer, middle and advanced successional stages. Our evidence is that soil nutrient stoichiometry may not be a good predictor of changes in plant N:P stoichiometry along natural primary ecological successions, which have not reached yet a retrogressive stage. This could be because wild-plants rely on mechanisms of internal nutrient regulation, which make them less dependent to changes in soil nutrient availability under unpredictable environmental conditions. Further studies need to clarify what underlying evolutionary and eco-physiological mechanisms determine changes in nutrient stoichiometry in plant species distributed across natural environmental gradients.

  9. A biological market analysis of the plant-mycorrhizal symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Gregory A K; Kiers, E Toby; Gardner, Andy; West, Stuart A

    2014-09-01

    It has been argued that cooperative behavior in the plant-mycorrhizal mutualism resembles trade in a market economy and can be understood using economic tools. Here, we assess the validity of this "biological market" analogy by investigating whether a market mechanism--that is, competition between partners over the price at which they provide goods--could be the outcome of natural selection. Then, we consider the conditions under which this market mechanism is sufficient to maintain mutualistic trade. We find that: (i) as in a market, individuals are favored to divide resources among trading partners in direct relation to the relative amount of resources received, termed linear proportional discrimination; (ii) mutualistic trade is more likely to be favored when individuals are able to interact with more partners of both species, and when there is a greater relative difference between the species in their ability to directly acquire different resources; (iii) if trade is favored, then either one or both species is favored to give up acquiring one resource directly, and vice versa. We then formulate testable predictions as to how environmental changes and coevolved responses of plants and mycorrhizal fungi will influence plant fitness (crop yields) in agricultural ecosystems.

  10. Fungal life-styles and ecosystem dynamics: biological aspects of plant pathogens, plant endophytes and saprophytes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, R.J.; Redman, R.S.

    1997-01-01

    This chapter discusses various biochemical, genetic, ecological, and evolutionary aspects of fungi that express either symbiotic or saprophytic life-styles. An enormous pool of potential pathogens exists in both agricultural and natural ecosystems, and virtually all plant species are susceptible to one or more fungal pathogens. Fungal pathogens have the potential to impact on the genetic structure of populations of individual plant species, the composition of plant communities and the process of plant succession. Endophytic fungi exist for at least part of their life cycles within the tissues of a plant host. This group of fungi is distinguished from plant pathogens because they do not elicit significant disease symptoms. However, endophytes do maintain the genetic and biochemical mechanisms required for infection and colonization of plant hosts. Fungi that obtain chemical nutrients from dead organic matter are known as saprophytes and are critical to the dynamics and resilience of ecosystems. There are two modes of saprophytic growth: one in which biomolecules that are amenable to transport across cell walls and membranes are directly absorbed, and another in which fungi must actively convert complex biopolymers into subunit forms amenable to transportation into cells. Regardless of life-style, fungi employ similar biochemical mechanisms for the acquisition and conversion of nutrients into complex biomolecules that are necessary for vegetative growth, production and dissemination of progeny, organismal competition, and survival during periods of nutrient deprivation or environmental inclemency.

  11. Using Student-Produced Time-Lapse Plant Movies to Communicate Concepts in Plant Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcia Harrison-Pitaniello

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Why do students think plants are “boring”?  One factor may be that they do not see plant movement in real (i.e., their time.  This attitude may negatively impact their understanding of plant biology.  Time-lapse movies of plants allow students to see the sophistication of movements involved in both organ development and orientation.  The objective of this project was to develop simple methods to capture image sequences for lab analysis and for converting into movies.  The technology for making time-lapse movies is now easily attainable and fairly inexpensive, allowing its use for skill levels from grade school through college undergraduates.  Presented are example time-lapse movie exercises from both an undergraduate plant physiology course and outreach activities.  The time-lapse plant exercises are adaptable to explore numerous topics that incorporate science standards core concepts, competencies, and disciplinary practices as well as to integrate higher order thinking skills and build skills in hypothesis development and communicating results to various audiences.

  12. Selection and Assessment of Plant Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria for Biological Control of Multiple Plant Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ke; Newman, Molli; McInroy, John A; Hu, Chia-Hui; Kloepper, Joseph W

    2017-08-01

    A study was designed to screen individual strains of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) for broad-spectrum disease suppression in vitro and in planta. In a preliminary screen, 28 of 196 strains inhibited eight different tested pathogens in vitro. In a secondary screen, these 28 strains showed broad spectrum antagonistic activity to six different genera of pathogens, and 24 of the 28 strains produced five traits reported to be related to plant growth promotion, including nitrogen fixation, phosphate solubilization, indole-3-acetic acid production, siderophore production, and biofilm formation. In advanced screens, the 28 PGPR strains selected in vitro were tested in planta for biological control of multiple plant diseases including bacterial spot of tomato caused by Xanthomonas axonopodis pv. vesicatoria, bacterial speck of tomato caused by Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato, damping-off of pepper caused by Rhizoctonia solani, and damping-off of cucumber caused by Pythium ultimum. In all, 5 of the 28 tested strains significantly reduced three of the four tested diseases, and another 19 strains showed biological control to two tested diseases. To understand the observed broad-spectrum biocontrol capacity, antiSMASH was used to predict secondary metabolite clusters of selected strains. Multiple gene clusters encoding for secondary metabolites, e.g., bacillibactin, bacilysin, and microcin, were detected in each strain. In conclusion, selected individual PGPR strains showed broad-spectrum biocontrol activity to multiple plant diseases.

  13. Cod Fractions In Mechanical-Biological Wastewater Treatment Plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Płuciennik-Koropczuk Ewelina

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents results of studies concerning the designation of COD fraction in the raw, mechanically treated and biologically treated wastewater. The test object was a wastewater treatment plant with the output of over 20,000 PE. The results were compared with data received in the ASM models. During investigation following fractions of COD were determined: dissolved non-biodegradable SI, dissolved easily biodegradable SS, in organic suspension slowly degradable XS and in organic suspension non-biodegradable XI. Methodology for determining the COD fraction was based on the guidelines ATV-A 131. The real percentage of each fraction in total COD in raw wastewater are different from data received in ASM models.

  14. Engineered plant biomass particles coated with biological agents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dooley, James H.; Lanning, David N.

    2014-06-24

    Plant biomass particles coated with a biological agent such as a bacterium or seed, characterized by a length dimension (L) aligned substantially parallel to a grain direction and defining a substantially uniform distance along the grain, a width dimension (W) normal to L and aligned cross grain, and a height dimension (H) normal to W and L. In particular, the L.times.H dimensions define a pair of substantially parallel side surfaces characterized by substantially intact longitudinally arrayed fibers, the W.times.H dimensions define a pair of substantially parallel end surfaces characterized by crosscut fibers and end checking between fibers, and the L.times.W dimensions define a pair of substantially parallel top and bottom surfaces.

  15. Troubleshooting a Full-scale Wastewater Treatment Plant for Biological Nutrient Removal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oleyiblo Oloche James

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The International Association of Water Quality (IAWQ Activated Sludge Model No.2 (ASM2 was applied to troubleshoot an existing underperforming full-scale wastewater treatment plant (WWTP built for biological nutrient removal. The WWTP is operated in a 3-stage pho-redox process configuration (A2O. This study was undertaken with the aim of finding optimal operating conditions that will meet TP and TN concentration requirements in the effluent of the WWTP under study without the use of either chemical or external carbon sources and also to verify the applicability, capability and predictability of ASM2 as implemented in STOAT software. ASM2 was successfully used to troubleshoot bottle neck areas and to define the operational schedule for optimal performance of the wastewater treatment plant. Consequently, the costs of chemical and external carbon sources were eliminated and the effect of residual chemicals on the environment reduced.

  16. Plant stimulation of soil microbial community succession: how sequential expression mediates soil carbon stabilization and turnover

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Firestone, Mary [Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)

    2015-03-31

    It is now understood that most plant C is utilized or transformed by soil microorganisms en route to stabilization. Hence the composition of microbial communities that mediate decomposition and transformation of root C is critical, as are the metabolic capabilities of these communities. The change in composition and function of the C-transforming microbial communities over time in effect defines the biological component of soil C stabilization. Our research was designed to test 2 general hypotheses; the first two hypotheses are discussed first; H1: Root-exudate interactions with soil microbial populations results in the expression of enzymatic capacities for macromolecular, complex carbon decomposition; and H2: Microbial communities surrounding roots undergo taxonomic succession linked to functional gene activities as roots grow, mature, and decompose in soil. Over the term of the project we made significant progress in 1) quantifying the temporal pattern of root interactions with the soil decomposing community and 2) characterizing the role of root exudates in mediating these interactions.

  17. Phytochrome from Green Plants: Properties and biological Function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Quail, Peter H.

    2014-07-25

    Plants constantly monitor the light environment for informational light signals used to direct adaptational responses to the prevailing conditions. One major such response, the Shade-Avaoidance Response (SAR), triggered when plants sense the presence of competing neighbors, results in enhanced channeling of photosynthetically-fixed carbon into stem elongation at the expense of deposition in reproductive tissues. This response has been selected against in many modern food crops to ensure maximum edible yield (e.g. seeds). Converse enhancement of the SAR, with consequent increased carbon channeling into vegetative cellulose, could contribute to the generation of crops with improved yield of tissues suitable for cellulosic biofuel production. The signal for this response is light enriched in far-red wavelengths. This signal is produced by sunlight filtered through, or reflected from, neighboring vegetation, as a result of preferential depletion of red photons through chlorophyll absorption. The plant phytochrome (phy) photoreceptor system (predominantly phyB) senses this signal through its capacity to switch reversibly, in milliseconds, between two molecular states: the biologically inactive Pr (red-light-absorbing) and biologically active Pfr (far-red-light-absorbing) conformers. The photoequilibrium established between these two conformers in light-grown plants is determined by the ratio of red-to-far-red wavelengths in the incoming signal. The levels of Pfr then dictate the recipient plant’s growth response: high levels suppress elongation growth; low levels promote elongation growth. Studies on seedling deetiolation have advanced our understanding considerably in recent years, of the mechanism by which the photoactivated phy molecule transduces its signal into cellular growth responses. The data show that a subfamily of phy-interacting bHLH transcription factors (PIFs) promote skotomorphogenic seedling development in post-germinative darkness, but that the phy

  18. RESEARCHES RELATED TO THE BIOLOGICAL STAGE FROM WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I.C MOGA

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available In the present study a model for the oxygen concentration profiles in a mobile bed biofilm reactor (MBBR is proposed. By using a material with a large specific surface area (m2/m3 high biological activity can be maintained using a relatively small reactor volume. Small parts made of special materials with density close to the water density, are immersed in the bioreactors. The biofilm carriers are kept in suspension and even mixed with the help of air bubbles generated by the aeration system. Water oxygenation is a mass transfer process of oxygen from gas/air to the liquid mass. It can be used in wastewater treatment in order to remove the organic matter, in the biological stage. The functioning of aerobic processes depends on the availability of sufficient quantities of oxygen. In wastewater treatment plants, submerged bubbles aeration is most frequently accomplished by dispersing air bubbles in the liquid. The main purpose of this study is to determine the concentration of dissolved oxygen using mathematical modeling and numerical simulations. The aim of the study is to find the optimum dimension and position of the aeration pipes for maintaining the oxygen concentration in the limits indicated in the literature. Experimental determinations (measurements of the DO concentration have also been realized. The oxygen profile concentration, in a MBBR reactor, was determined.

  19. The cell biology of lignification in higher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-06-01

    Lignin is a polyphenolic polymer that strengthens and waterproofs the cell wall of specialized plant cell types. Lignification is part of the normal differentiation programme and functioning of specific cell types, but can also be triggered as a response to various biotic and abiotic stresses in cells that would not otherwise be lignifying. Cell wall lignification exhibits specific characteristics depending on the cell type being considered. These characteristics include the timing of lignification during cell differentiation, the palette of associated enzymes and substrates, the sub-cellular deposition sites, the monomeric composition and the cellular autonomy for lignin monomer production. This review provides an overview of the current understanding of lignin biosynthesis and polymerization at the cell biology level. The lignification process ranges from full autonomy to complete co-operation depending on the cell type. The different roles of lignin for the function of each specific plant cell type are clearly illustrated by the multiple phenotypic defects exhibited by knock-out mutants in lignin synthesis, which may explain why no general mechanism for lignification has yet been defined. The range of phenotypic effects observed include altered xylem sap transport, loss of mechanical support, reduced seed protection and dispersion, and/or increased pest and disease susceptibility. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Biological studies on Brazilian plants used in wound healing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, C; Fronza, M; Goettert, M; Geller, F; Luik, S; Flores, E M M; Bittencourt, C F; Zanetti, G D; Heinzmann, B M; Laufer, S; Merfort, I

    2009-04-21

    n-Hexanic and ethanolic extracts from twelve plants (Brugmansia suaveolens Brecht. et Presl., Eupatorium laevigatum Lam., Galinsoga parviflora Cav., Iresine herbstii Hook., Kalanchöe tubiflora Hamet-Ahti, Petiveria alliacea L., Pluchea sagittalis (Lam.) Cabrera, Piper regnellii DC., Schinus molle L., Sedum dendroideum Moç et Sessé ex DC., Waltheria douradinha St. Hill., Xanthium cavanillesii Schouw.) used in traditional South Brazilian medicine as wound healing agents were investigated in various biological assays, targeting different aspects in this complex process. The extracts were investigated on NF-kappaB DNA binding, p38alpha MAPK, TNF-alpha release, direct elastase inhibition and its release as well as on caspase-3. Fibroblasts migration to and proliferation into the wounded monolayers were evaluated in the scratch assay, the agar diffusion test for antibacterial and the MTT assay for cytotoxic effects. The hydrophilic extracts from Galinsoga parviflora, Petiveria alliacea, Schinus molle, Waltheria douradinha and Xanthium cavanillesii as well as the lipophilic extract of Waltheria douradinha turned out to be the most active ones. These results increase our knowledge on the wound healing effects of the investigated medicinal plants. Further studies are necessary to find out the effective secondary metabolites responsible for the observed effects.

  1. Stability and succession of the rhizosphere microbiota depends upon plant type and soil composition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tkacz, Andrzej; Cheema, Jitender; Chandra, Govind; Grant, Alastair; Poole, Philip S

    2015-11-01

    We examined succession of the rhizosphere microbiota of three model plants (Arabidopsis, Medicago and Brachypodium) in compost and sand and three crops (Brassica, Pisum and Triticum) in compost alone. We used serial inoculation of 24 independent replicate microcosms over three plant generations for each plant/soil combination. Stochastic variation between replicates was surprisingly weak and by the third generation, replicate microcosms for each plant had communities that were very similar to each other but different to those of other plants or unplanted soil. Microbiota diversity remained high in compost, but declined drastically in sand, with bacterial opportunists and putative autotrophs becoming dominant. These dramatic differences indicate that many microbes cannot thrive on plant exudates alone and presumably also require carbon sources and/or nutrients from soil. Arabidopsis had the weakest influence on its microbiota and in compost replicate microcosms converged on three alternative community compositions rather than a single distinctive community. Organisms selected in rhizospheres can have positive or negative effects. Two abundant bacteria are shown to promote plant growth, but in Brassica the pathogen Olpidium brassicae came to dominate the fungal community. So plants exert strong selection on the rhizosphere microbiota but soil composition is critical to its stability. microbial succession/ plant-microbe interactions/rhizosphere microbiota/selection.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Current status of molecular biological techniques for plant breeding in the Republic of Korea

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sohn, Seong-Han; Lee, Si-Myung; Park, Bum-Seok; Yun, In-Sun; Goo, Doe-Hoe; Kim, Seok-Dong [Rural Development Administration, National Institute of Agricultural Science and Technology, Suwon (Korea)

    2002-02-01

    Classical plant breeding has played an important role in developing new varieties in current agriculture. For decades, the technique of cross-pollination has been popular for breeding in cereal and horticultural crops to introduce special traits. However, recently the molecular techniques get widely accepted as an alternative tool in both introducing a useful trait for developing the new cultivars and investigating the characteristics of a trait in plant, like the identification of a gene. Using the advanced molecular technique, several genetically modified (GM) crops (e.g., Roundup Ready Soybean, YieldGard, LibertyLink etc.) became commercially cultivated and appeared in the global market since 1996. The GM crops, commercially available at the moment, could be regarded as successful achievements in history of crop breeding conferring the specific gene into economically valuable crops to make them better. Along with such achievements, on the other hand these new crops have also caused the controversial debate on the safety of GM crops as human consumption and environmental release as well. Nevertheless, molecular techniques are widespread and popular in both investigating the basic science of plant biology and breeding new varieties compared to their conventional counterparts. Thus, the Department of Bioresources at the National Institute of Agricultural Science and Technology (NIAST) has been using the molecular biological techniques as a complimentary tool for the improvement of crop varieties for almost two decades. (author)

  5. Enhancing Student Success in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics by Transforming the Faculty Culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Howard; Smith, Leigh; Koenig, Kathleen; Beyette, Jill; Kinkle, Brian; Vonderheide, Anne

    We present preliminary results of an effort to enhance undergraduate student success in the STEM disciplines. We explore a multistep approach that reflects recent literature and report initial results by each of the Departments of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics of implementing several change strategies. The central elements of our approach involve identified departmental Teaching and Learning Liaisons, a unique faculty development component by our teaching center, a vertical integration of leadership across department heads, the Dean, and the Provost, and the explicit acknowledgement that change happens locally. Teaching and Learning lunches across the departments have attracted an attendance of ~65% of the faculty. The use of Learning Assistants in classrooms has also increased sharply. Modest changes in the student success rates have been observed. These efforts and others at the decanal and provostal levels promise changes in student success. We acknowledge the financial support of the National Science Foundation through DUE 1544001 and 1431350.

  6. Determinants of plant establishment success in a multispecies introduction experiment with native and alien species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kempel, Anne; Chrobock, Thomas; Fischer, Markus; Rohr, Rudolf Philippe; van Kleunen, Mark

    2013-07-30

    Determinants of plant establishment and invasion are a key issue in ecology and evolution. Although establishment success varies substantially among species, the importance of species traits and extrinsic factors as determinants of establishment in existing communities has remained difficult to prove in observational studies because they can be confounded and mask each other. Therefore, we conducted a large multispecies field experiment to disentangle the relative importance of extrinsic factors vs. species characteristics for the establishment success of plants in grasslands. We introduced 48 alien and 45 native plant species at different seed numbers into multiple grassland sites with or without experimental soil disturbance and related their establishment success to species traits assessed in five independent multispecies greenhouse experiments. High propagule pressure and high seed mass were the most important factors increasing establishment success in the very beginning of the experiment. However, after 3 y, propagule pressure became less important, and species traits related to biotic interactions (including herbivore resistance and responses to shading and competition) became the most important drivers of success or failure. The relative importance of different traits was environment-dependent and changed over time. Our approach of combining a multispecies introduction experiment in the field with trait data from independent multispecies experiments in the greenhouse allowed us to detect the relative importance of species traits for early establishment and provided evidence that species traits--fine-tuned by environmental factors--determine success or failure of alien and native plants in temperate grasslands.

  7. Laboratory techniques in plant molecular biology taught with UniformMu insertion alleles of maize

    Science.gov (United States)

    An undergraduate course - Laboratory Techniques in Plant Molecular Biology - was organized around our research application of UniformMu insertion alleles to investigate mitochondrial functions in plant reproduction. The course objectives were to develop students’ laboratory, record keeping, bioinfor...

  8. The phytotronist and the phenotype: plant physiology, Big Science, and a Cold War biology of the whole plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munns, David P D

    2015-04-01

    This paper describes how, from the early twentieth century, and especially in the early Cold War era, the plant physiologists considered their discipline ideally suited among all the plant sciences to study and explain biological functions and processes, and ranked their discipline among the dominant forms of the biological sciences. At their apex in the late-1960s, the plant physiologists laid claim to having discovered nothing less than the "basic laws of physiology." This paper unwraps that claim, showing that it emerged from the construction of monumental big science laboratories known as phytotrons that gave control over the growing environment. Control meant that plant physiologists claimed to be able to produce a standard phenotype valid for experimental biology. Invoking the standards of the physical sciences, the plant physiologists heralded basic biological science from the phytotronic produced phenotype. In the context of the Cold War era, the ability to pursue basic science represented the highest pinnacle of standing within the scientific community. More broadly, I suggest that by recovering the history of an underappreciated discipline, plant physiology, and by establishing the centrality of the story of the plant sciences in the history of biology can historians understand the massive changes wrought to biology by the conceptual emergence of the molecular understanding of life, the dominance of the discipline of molecular biology, and the rise of biotechnology in the 1980s. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. The perspectives of nonscience-major students on success in community college biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim-Rajab, Oriana Sharon

    With more than 36% of nonscience-major community college students unable to successfully complete their general life science courses, graduation and transfer rates to four-year universities are negatively affected. Many students also miss important opportunities to gain some level of science proficiency. In an effort to address the problem of poor science achievement, this research project determined which factors were most significantly related to student success in a community college biology course. It also aimed to understand the student perspectives on which modifications to the course would best help them in the pursuit of success. Drawing heavily on the educational psychology schools of thought on motivation and self-efficacy of science learning, this study surveyed and interviewed students on their perceptions of which factors were related to success in biology and the changes they believed were needed in the course structure to improve success. The data revealed that the primary factors related to student success are the students' study skills and their perceived levels of self-efficacy. The findings also uncovered the critical nature of the professor's role in influencing the success of the students. After assessing the needs of the community college population, meaningful and appropriate curriculum and pedagogical reforms could be created to improve student learning outcomes. This study offered recommendations for reforms that can be used by science practitioners to provide a more nurturing and inspiring environment for all students. These suggestions revolved around the role of the instructor in influencing the self-efficacy and study skills of students. Providing more opportunities for students to interact in class, testing more frequently, establishing peer assistance programs, managing better the course material, and making themselves more available to students were at the forefront of the list. Examples of the potential benefits of increasing

  10. Application of plant growth regulators, a simple technique for improving the establishment success of plant cuttings in coastal dune restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balestri, Elena; Vallerini, Flavia; Castelli, Alberto; Lardicci, Claudio

    2012-03-01

    Exogenous application of plant growth regulators (PGRs) may be an effective technique for increasing the rooting ability and the growth of vegetative fragments (cuttings) of plants used in dune restoration programs. Various concentrations (0, 50 and 100 mg l-1) of two auxins, alpha-naphtaleneacetic acid (NAA) and indole-3-butyric acid (IBA), and two cytokinins, 6-furfurylaminopurine (Kinetin) and 6-benzylaminopurine (BAP), were applied separately to cuttings of two widely used species for restoration, Ammophila arenaria and Sporobuls virginicus. Root development and production of new buds in cuttings were examined under laboratory conditions one month after application. Cuttings were also examined one year after transplanting into a sandy substratum under natural conditions, to test for possible long term effects of PGRs on plant establishment success and growth. The response of the two study species to PGRs differed substantially. In A. arenaria the auxin NAA at 100 mg l-1 reduced the time for root initiation and increased the rooting capacity of cuttings, while the cytokinin Kinetin at 50 mg l-1 facilitated root growth. No auxin had effect on rooting or growth of S. virginicus cuttings, but treatment with 100 mg l-1 Kinetin resulted in higher rooting success than the control. One year after planting, the cuttings of A. arenaria treated with 100 mg l-1 NAA showed a higher establishment success (90% vs. 55%) and produced more culms and longer roots than the control; those treated with cytokinins did not differ in the establishment success from the control, but had longer roots, more culms and rhizomes. On the other hand, the cuttings of S. virginicus treated with 100 mg l-1 Kinetin showed a higher establishment success (75% vs. 35%) and had more culms than the control. Therefore, in restoration activities that involved A. arenaria, a pre-treatment of cuttings with NAA would be beneficial, as it allows the production of a higher number of well-developed plants with

  11. The importance of pollinator generalization and abundance for the reproductive success of a generalist plant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Belén Maldonado

    Full Text Available Previous studies have examined separately how pollinator generalization and abundance influence plant reproductive success, but none so far has evaluated simultaneously the relative importance of these pollinator attributes. Here we evaluated the extent to which pollinator generalization and abundance influence plant reproductive success per visit and at the population level on a generalist plant, Opuntia sulphurea (Cactaceae. We used field experiments and path analysis to evaluate whether the per-visit effect is determined by the pollinator's degree of generalization, and whether the population level effect (pollinator impact is determined by the pollinator's degree of generalization and abundance. Based on the models we tested, we concluded that the per-visit effect of a pollinator on plant reproduction was not determined by the pollinators' degree of generalization, while the population-level impact of a pollinator on plant reproduction was mainly determined by the pollinators' degree of generalization. Thus, generalist pollinators have the greatest species impact on pollination and reproductive success of O. sulphurea. According to our analysis this greatest impact of generalist pollinators may be partly explained by pollinator abundance. However, as abundance does not suffice as an explanation of pollinator impact, we suggest that vagility, need for resource consumption, and energetic efficiency of generalist pollinators may also contribute to determine a pollinator's impact on plant reproduction.

  12. Positive feedback between mycorrhizal fungi and plants influences plant invasion success and resistance to invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qian; Yang, Ruyi; Tang, Jianjun; Yang, Haishui; Hu, Shuijin; Chen, Xin

    2010-08-24

    Negative or positive feedback between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and host plants can contribute to plant species interactions, but how this feedback affects plant invasion or resistance to invasion is not well known. Here we tested how alterations in AMF community induced by an invasive plant species generate feedback to the invasive plant itself and affect subsequent interactions between the invasive species and its native neighbors. We first examined the effects of the invasive forb Solidago canadensis L. on AMF communities comprising five different AMF species. We then examined the effects of the altered AMF community on mutualisms formed with the native legume forb species Kummerowia striata (Thunb.) Schindl. and on the interaction between the invasive and native plants. The host preferences of the five AMF were also assessed to test whether the AMF form preferred mutualistic relations with the invasive and/or the native species. We found that S. canadensis altered AMF spore composition by increasing one AMF species (Glomus geosporum) while reducing Glomus mosseae, which is the dominant species in the field. The host preference test showed that S. canadensis had promoted the abundance of AMF species (G. geosporum) that most promoted its own growth. As a consequence, the altered AMF community enhanced the competitiveness of invasive S. canadensis at the expense of K. striata. Our results demonstrate that the invasive S. canadensis alters soil AMF community composition because of fungal-host preference. This change in the composition of the AMF community generates positive feedback to the invasive S. canadensis itself and decreases AM associations with native K. striata, thereby making the native K. striata less dominant.

  13. The Development of Computational Biology in South Africa: Successes Achieved and Lessons Learnt

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulder, Nicola J.; Christoffels, Alan; de Oliveira, Tulio; Gamieldien, Junaid; Hazelhurst, Scott; Joubert, Fourie; Kumuthini, Judit; Pillay, Ché S.; Snoep, Jacky L.; Tastan Bishop, Özlem; Tiffin, Nicki

    2016-01-01

    Bioinformatics is now a critical skill in many research and commercial environments as biological data are increasing in both size and complexity. South African researchers recognized this need in the mid-1990s and responded by working with the government as well as international bodies to develop initiatives to build bioinformatics capacity in the country. Significant injections of support from these bodies provided a springboard for the establishment of computational biology units at multiple universities throughout the country, which took on teaching, basic research and support roles. Several challenges were encountered, for example with unreliability of funding, lack of skills, and lack of infrastructure. However, the bioinformatics community worked together to overcome these, and South Africa is now arguably the leading country in bioinformatics on the African continent. Here we discuss how the discipline developed in the country, highlighting the challenges, successes, and lessons learnt. PMID:26845152

  14. Plant polyphenols: chemical properties, biological activities, and synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quideau, Stéphane; Deffieux, Denis; Douat-Casassus, Céline; Pouységu, Laurent

    2011-01-17

    Eating five servings of fruits and vegetables per day! This is what is highly recommended and heavily advertised nowadays to the general public to stay fit and healthy! Drinking green tea on a regular basis, eating chocolate from time to time, as well as savoring a couple of glasses of red wine per day have been claimed to increase life expectancy even further! Why? The answer is in fact still under scientific scrutiny, but a particular class of compounds naturally occurring in fruits and vegetables is considered to be crucial for the expression of such human health benefits: the polyphenols! What are these plant products really? What are their physicochemical properties? How do they express their biological activity? Are they really valuable for disease prevention? Can they be used to develop new pharmaceutical drugs? What recent progress has been made toward their preparation by organic synthesis? This Review gives answers from a chemical perspective, summarizes the state of the art, and highlights the most significant advances in the field of polyphenol research. Copyright © 2011 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  15. Breeding biology and success of a reintroduced population of the critically endangered Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tweed, E.J.; Foster, J.T.; Woodworth, B.L.; Monahan, W.B.; Kellerman, J.L.; Lieberman, A.

    2006-01-01

    The ultimate success of reintroduction programs for endangered species depends on the ability of reintroduced animals to breed in the wild. We studied the nesting success and breeding biology of a reintroduced population of Puaiohi (Myadestes palmeri) on the island of Kaua'i, Hawaii. Thirty-four captive-bred Puaiohi were released into the Alaka'i Swamp in 1999-2001 and monitored using radiotelemetry. Ten females and two males paired with wild and other released birds, including one polygynous trio. From March to September, 31 nests were built. Mean clutch size was 2.0 eggs, daily nest survival was 0.97 ?? 0.01 (mean ?? SE) and overall nest success was 0.40 ?? 0.02. We confirmed predation, most probably by rats (Rattus spp.), as the greatest cause of nest failure, occurring at 38% of active nests with known fates, and causing the death of two nesting adult females. Ground-based rodent control proved ineffective at protecting nest attempts. Successful nests fledged an average of 1.4 young each (n = 10), and 85% of fledglings survived at least two weeks. Importantly, breeding behavior and success were comparable to those of wild Puaiohi. This is the first record of breeding in the wild from captive-bred endangered Hawaiian passerines. The ability of captive-bred Puaiohi to survive and breed successfully in the wild bodes well for future releases of this and other endangered passerines, but high predation rates on nests and nesting females highlights the importance of maintaining and restoring safe habitat for recovery. ?? The American Ornithologists' Union, 2006.

  16. Earthworms drive succession of both plant and Collembola communities in post-mining sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mudrák, Ondřej; Uteseny, Karoline; Frouz, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Previous field observations indicated that earthworms promote late-successional plant species and reduce collembolan numbers at post-mining sites in the Sokolov coal mining district (Czech Republic). Here, we established a laboratory pot experiment to test the effect of earthworms (Aporrectodea caliginosa Savigny and Lumbricus rubellus Hoffm.) and litter of low, medium, and high quality (the grass Calamagrostis epigejos, the willow Salix caprea, and the alder Alnus glutinosa, respectively) on late successional plants (grasses Arrhenatherum elatius and Agrostis capillaris, legumes Lotus corniculatus and Trifolium medium, and non-leguminous dicots Centaurea jacea and Plantago lanceolata) in spoil substrate originating from Sokolov post-mining sites and naturally inhabited by abundant numbers of Collembola. The earthworms increased plant biomass, especially that of the large-seeded A. elatius, but reduced the number of plant individuals, mainly that of the small-seeded A. capillaris and both legumes. Litter quality affected plant biomass, which was highest with S. caprea litter, but did not change the number of plant individuals. Litter quality did not modify the effect of earthworms on plants; the effect of litter quality and earthworms was only additive. Species composition of Collembola community was altered by litter quality, but earthworms reduced the number of individuals, increased the number of species, and increased species evenness consistently across the litter qualities. Because the results of this experiment were consistent with the field observations, we conclude that earthworms help drive succession of both plant and Collembola communities on post-mining sites.

  17. Bioengineering of plant (tri)terpenoids: from metabolic engineering of plants to synthetic biology in vivo and in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moses, Tessa; Pollier, Jacob; Thevelein, Johan M; Goossens, Alain

    2013-10-01

    Terpenoids constitute a large and diverse class of natural products that serve many functions in nature. Most of the tens of thousands of the discovered terpenoids are synthesized by plants, where they function as primary metabolites involved in growth and development, or as secondary metabolites that optimize the interaction between the plant and its environment. Several plant terpenoids are economically important molecules that serve many applications as pharmaceuticals, pesticides, etc. Major challenges for the commercialization of plant-derived terpenoids include their low production levels in planta and the continuous demand of industry for novel molecules with new or superior biological activities. Here, we highlight several synthetic biology methods to enhance and diversify the production of plant terpenoids, with a foresight towards triterpenoid engineering, the least engineered class of bioactive terpenoids. Increased or cheaper production of valuable triterpenoids may be obtained by 'classic' metabolic engineering of plants or by heterologous production of the compounds in other plants or microbes. Novel triterpenoid structures can be generated through combinatorial biosynthesis or directed enzyme evolution approaches. In its ultimate form, synthetic biology may lead to the production of large amounts of plant triterpenoids in in vitro systems or custom-designed artificial biological systems.

  18. Species composition and interspecific association of plants in primary succession of Mount Merapi, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SUTOMO

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Sutomo, Faradila D, Putri LSE (2011 Species composition and interspecific association of plants in primary succession of Mount Merapi, Indonesia. Biodiversitas 12: 212-217. Primary succession refers to the establishment of plant species and subsequent changes in composition following major disturbance such as volcanic activity. The study of succession may assist in recognizing the possible effects of species interactions (i.e. facilitation or inhibition. The barren landscapes created by volcanic disturbance on Mount Merapi, Java, Indonesia, provide excellent opportunities to study primary succession. Fifty-six species belonging to 26 families were recorded in the five nuées ardentes deposits. The highest number of species belonged to the Asteraceae, then Poaceae, followed by Fabaceae and Rubiaceae. In Mount Merapi primary succession, the ecosystem may be developing with time as indicated by the increase in the number of species associations. The number of positive associations was generally higher than the number of negative associations, except in the 2001 deposit where it was equal. Native and alien invasive species had different patterns of interspecific associations. This research demonstrates that in primary succession sites on Mount Merapi, positive interspecific association increased as time progressed, which may support the view that facilitation is more prominent in a severely disturbed habitat as compared to competition.

  19. The potential of plants as a system for the development and production of human biologics [version 1; referees: 3 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qiang Chen

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The growing promise of plant-made biologics is highlighted by the success story of ZMapp™ as a potentially life-saving drug during the Ebola outbreak of 2014-2016. Current plant expression platforms offer features beyond the traditional advantages of low cost, high scalability, increased safety, and eukaryotic protein modification. Novel transient expression vectors have been developed that allow the production of vaccines and therapeutics at unprecedented speed to control potential pandemics or bioterrorism attacks. Plant-host engineering provides a method for producing proteins with unique and uniform mammalian post-translational modifications, providing opportunities to develop biologics with increased efficacy relative to their mammalian cell-produced counterparts. Recent demonstrations that plant-made proteins can function as biocontrol agents of foodborne pathogens further exemplify the potential utility of plant-based protein production. However, resolving the technical and regulatory challenges of commercial-scale production, garnering acceptance from large pharmaceutical companies, and obtaining U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for several major classes of biologics are essential steps to fulfilling the untapped potential of this technology.

  20. Reproductive biology in the medicinal plant, Plumbago zeylanica L.

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2008-10-06

    Oct 6, 2008 ... Plumbago zeylanica L. is an important medicinal plant traditionally used for the treatment of various diseases. ... Key words: Growth regulators, medicinal plant, seasonal climate, plant size, growth environment. .... artificial observation. ..... and far-red light or indoleacetic acid in the flowering of pharbitis.

  1. Eduard Strasburger (1844-1912): founder of modern plant cell biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volkmann, Dieter; Baluška, František; Menzel, Diedrik

    2012-10-01

    Eduard Strasburger, director of the Botany Institute and the Botanical Garden at the University of Bonn from 1881 to 1912, was one of the most admirable scientists in the field of plant biology, not just as the founder of modern plant cell biology but in addition as an excellent teacher who strongly believed in "education through science." He contributed to plant cell biology by discovering the discrete stages of karyokinesis and cytokinesis in algae and higher plants, describing cytoplasmic streaming in different systems, and reporting on the growth of the pollen tube into the embryo sac and guidance of the tube by synergides. Strasburger raised many problems which are hot spots in recent plant cell biology, e.g., structure and function of the plasmodesmata in relation to phloem loading (Strasburger cells) and signaling, mechanisms of cell plate formation, vesicle trafficking as a basis for most important developmental processes, and signaling related to fertilization.

  2. Blueprints for green biotech: development and application of standards for plant synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patron, Nicola J

    2016-06-15

    Synthetic biology aims to apply engineering principles to the design and modification of biological systems and to the construction of biological parts and devices. The ability to programme cells by providing new instructions written in DNA is a foundational technology of the field. Large-scale de novo DNA synthesis has accelerated synthetic biology by offering custom-made molecules at ever decreasing costs. However, for large fragments and for experiments in which libraries of DNA sequences are assembled in different combinations, assembly in the laboratory is still desirable. Biological assembly standards allow DNA parts, even those from multiple laboratories and experiments, to be assembled together using the same reagents and protocols. The adoption of such standards for plant synthetic biology has been cohesive for the plant science community, facilitating the application of genome editing technologies to plant systems and streamlining progress in large-scale, multi-laboratory bioengineering projects.

  3. Understanding the Biological Roles of Pectins in Plants through Physiological and Functional Characterizations of Plant and Fungal Mutants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stranne, Maria

    The plant cell wall is a dynamic structure and it is involved in regulating a number of physiological features of plants such as physical strength, growth, cell differentiation, intercellular communication, water movement and defense responses. Pectins constitute a major class of plant cell wall...... aspects remain elusive. Studies described in this thesis aimed at gaining new insights into the biological roles of pectin acetylation and arabinosylation in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. The thesis consists of four chapters: physiological characterization of cell wall mutants affected in cell...... polysaccharides and consist of backbones rich in galacturonic acids, which are decorated with a range of functional groups including acetyl esters and arabinan sidechains. Although much effort has been made to uncover biological functions of pectins in plants and remarkable progresses have taken place, many...

  4. Implications of hydrologic variability on the succession of plants in Great Lakes wetlands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilcox, Douglas A.

    2004-01-01

    Primary succession of plant communities directed toward a climax is not a typical occurrence in wetlands because these ecological systems are inherently dependent on hydrology, and temporal hydrologic variability often causes reversals or setbacks in succession. Wetlands of the Great Lakes provide good examples for demonstrating the implications of hydrology in driving successional processes and for illustrating potential misinterpretations of apparent successional sequences. Most Great Lakes coastal wetlands follow cyclic patterns in which emergent communities are reduced in area or eliminated by high lake levels and then regenerated from the seed bank during low lake levels. Thus, succession never proceeds for long. Wetlands also develop in ridge and swale terrains in many large embayments of the Great Lakes. These formations contain sequences of wetlands of similar origin but different age that can be several thousand years old, with older wetlands always further from the lake. Analyses of plant communities across a sequence of wetlands at the south end of Lake Michigan showed an apparent successional pattern from submersed to floating to emergent plants as water depth decreased with wetland age. However, paleoecological analyses showed that the observed vegetation changes were driven largely by disturbances associated with increased human settlement in the area. Climate-induced hydrologic changes were also shown to have greater effects on plant-community change than autogenic processes. Other terms, such as zonation, maturation, fluctuations, continuum concept, functional guilds, centrifugal organization, pulse stability, and hump-back models provide additional means of describing organization and changes in vegetation; some of them overlap with succession in describing vegetation processes in Great Lakes wetlands, but each must be used in the proper context with regard to short- and long-term hydrologic variability.

  5. First evidence of successful natural reproduction by planted lake trout in Lake Huron

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nester, Robert T.; Poe, Thomas P.

    1984-01-01

    Twenty-two lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush) swim-up fry, 24-27 mm long, were captured with emergent fry traps and a tow net in northwestern Lake Huron on a small nearshore reef off Alpena, Michigan, between May 10 and June 1, 1982. These catches represent the first evidence of successful production of swim-up fry by planted, hatchery-reared lake trout in Lake Huron since the lake trout rehabilitation program began in 1973.

  6. The rise of nanotoxicology: A successful collaboration between engineering and biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristen K. Comfort

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The field of nanotechnology has grown exponentially in the last decade, due to increasing capabilities in material science which allows for the precise and reproducible synthesis of nanomaterials (NMs. However, the unique physicochemical properties of NMs that make them attractive for nanotechnological applications also introduce serious health and safety concerns; thus giving rise to the field of nanotoxicology. Initial efforts focused on evaluating the toxic potential of NMs, however, it became clear that due to their distinctive characteristics it was necessary to design and develop new assessment metrics. Through a prolific collaboration, engineering practices and principles were applied to nanotoxicology in order to accurately evaluate NM behavior, characterize the nano-cellular interface, and measure biological responses within a cellular environment. This review discusses three major areas in which the field of nanotoxicology progressed as a result of a strong engineering-biology partnership: 1 the establishment of standardized characterization tools and techniques, 2 the examination of NM dosimetry and the development of mathematical, predictive models, and 3 the generation of physiologically relevant exposure systems that incorporate fluid dynamics and high-throughput mechanisms. The goal of this review is to highlight the multidisciplinary efforts behind the successes of nanotoxicology and celebrate the partnerships that have emerged from this research field.

  7. Late snowmelt delays plant development and results in lower reproductive success in the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Elisabeth J; Dullinger, Stefan; Semenchuk, Philipp

    2011-01-01

    In tundra areas where the growing season is short, any delay in the start of summer may have a considerable effect on plant development, growth and reproductive success. Climate models suggest long-term changes in winter precipitation in the Arctic, which may lead to deeper snow cover and a resultant delay in date of snow melt. In this paper, we investigated the role of snow depth and melt out date on the phenological development and reproductive success of vascular plants in Adventdalen, Svalbard (78° 10'N, 16° 06'E). Effects of natural variations in snow accumulation were demonstrated using two vegetation types (snow depth: meadow 21 cm, heath 32 cm), and fences were used to experimentally increase snow depth by over 1m. Phenological delay was greatest directly after snowmelt in the earlier phenological phases, and had the largest effect on the early development of those species which normally green-up early (i.e. Dryas, Papaver, Salix, Saxifraga). Compressed growing seasons and length of the reproductive period led to a reduced reproductive success in some of the study species. There were fewer flowers, fewer plots with dispersing seeds, and lower germination rates. This can have consequences for plant establishment and community composition in the long-term.

  8. Dispersal and colonisation of plants in lowland streams: success rates and bottlenecks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riis, Tenna

    2008-01-01

    Plant dispersal and colonisation, including rates of dispersal, retention, colonisation and survival of dispersed propagules (shoots and seeds), were studied in a 300-m stream reach in a macrophyte-rich lowland stream during one growing season. Relationships between colonisation processes...... and seeds, due in part to low retention success (1% of the dispersed shoots per 100-m reach) and to unsuccessful colonisation of retained shoots (3.4% of retained shoots colonised). The number of drifting shoots and seeds per day during the growing season were 650-6,950 and 2,970-62,780, respectively...... and simple flow parameters were tested. Each fortnight during a growing season, the number of dispersed plant propagules and the number of new and lost plant colonisations since the last sampling day were recorded. The retention of dispersing shoots was tested on two occasions during the growing season...

  9. Molecular Approach to the Nyctinastic Movement of the Plant Controlled by a Biological Clock

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shosuke Yamamura

    2001-10-01

    Full Text Available Most leguminous plants close their leaves in the evening, as if to sleep, and open them early in the morning. This circadian rhythm is known to be controlled by the biological clock of such plants. Extensive studies on other nyctinastic plants led to the isolation of a variety of leaf-closing and leaf-opening substances. And, we found that the circadian rhythmic leaf-movement of these plants is controlled by a biological clock that regulates the balance of concentration between leaf-opening and -closing substances.

  10. Molecular Approach to the Nyctinastic Movement of the Plant Controlled by a Biological Clock

    OpenAIRE

    Shosuke Yamamura; Noboru Takada; Minoru Ueda

    2001-01-01

    Most leguminous plants close their leaves in the evening, as if to sleep, and open them early in the morning. This circadian rhythm is known to be controlled by the biological clock of such plants. Extensive studies on other nyctinastic plants led to the isolation of a variety of leaf-closing and leaf-opening substances. And, we found that the circadian rhythmic leaf-movement of these plants is controlled by a biological clock that regulates the balance of concentration between leaf-opening a...

  11. Nanobiotechnology meets plant cell biology: Carbon nanotubes as organelle targeting nanocarriers

    KAUST Repository

    Bayoumi, Maged Fouad

    2013-01-01

    For years, nanotechnology has shown great promise in the fields of biomedical and biotechnological sciences and medical research. In this review, we demonstrate its versatility and applicability in plant cell biology studies. Specifically, we discuss the ability of functionalized carbon nanotubes to penetrate the plant cell wall, target specific organelles, probe protein-carrier activity and induce organelle recycling in plant cells. We also, shed light on prospective applications of carbon nanomaterials in cell biology and plant cell transformation. © 2013 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

  12. Plant biology: gatekeepers of the road to protein perdition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauer, Michael; Friml, Jiří

    2014-01-06

    Targeting membrane proteins for degradation requires the sequential action of ESCRT sub-complexes ESCRT-0 to ESCRT-III. Although this machinery is generally conserved among kingdoms, plants lack the essential ESCRT-0 components. A new report closes this gap by identifying a novel protein family that substitutes for ESCRT-0 function in plants.

  13. Plant Developmental Biology in Spain: from the origins to our days and prospects for the future.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beltrán, José-Pío

    2009-01-01

    The origins of modern Plant Developmental Biology in Spain can be traced back to a handful of scientists settled in Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and Sevilla, who devoted themselves to plant biochemistry, molecular biology and genetics, and also to Drosophila developmental biology, which influenced, often unintentionally, the pioneers of this field. To reach the present day situation, the experience acquired in centres abroad has also been important, especially in plant research institutes in the USA, Germany (Max-Planck Institute für Züchtungsforschung) and United Kingdom (John Innes Centre). The contributions of Spanish scientists to the advancement of Plant Developmental Biology appears to be imbalanced towards reproductive biology, although relevant publications have also been reported on embryogenesis and seed development, shoot branching, tuberization, vascular morphogenesis, leaf development, regulation of development by light, signal transduction and hormone action and the connection between growth and development. Plant Developmental Biology in Spain is going through a flourishing time, with its future being highly dependent on i) appropriate funding conditions to its young scientists, ii) the opening of new areas of research, iii) the incorporation of technological breakthroughs into laboratories and iv) the carrying out of cooperative research by means of networking. Currently, besides many Departments of the Spanish universities, several centres in which competitive research in plant Developmental Biology can be accomplished, exist: the CNB and CBGP in Madrid, the LGMV CSIC-IRTA in Barcelona, the IBMCP CSIC-UPV, in Valencia and the IBVF CSIC-USE in Sevilla. Let's go for more!

  14. Species richness and phylogenetic structure in plant communities: 20 years of succession

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Stadler

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Secondary succession on arable fields is a popular system for studying processes influencing community assembly of plants. During early succession, the arrival and establishment of those propagules that can pass the environmental filters operating at a given site should be among the dominant processes leading to an initial increase in species richness. With ongoing succession, environmental filtering should decrease in relative importance compared to competitive interactions, which then should decrease species richness. Thereby, the phylogenetic structure of communities should change from random or clustered patterns during early succession to overdispersion. Disturbance is supposed to act as an additional filter, causing communities to be phylogenetically clustered. By analysing the species richness and phylogenetic structure of secondary succession in two different regions in Germany with three different disturbance levels each, we tested this general model. Although in one of the regions (Gimritz we found the expected trajectory of species richness, phylogenetic structure did not follow the expected trend from random or clustered towards overdispersed communities. In the other region (Bayreuth, species richness did not follow the expected trajectory and phylogenetic structure remained clustered over the course of succession. A preliminary analysis of autecological characteristics of the species involved (Ellenberg indicator values nevertheless showed clear contrasting trends. The idiosyncrasies of successional trajectories across sites might be due to the environmental context, the regional species pool as well as the legacy of former land use reflected in the seed bank.

  15. VirtualPlant: A Software Platform to Support Systems Biology Research1[W][OA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katari, Manpreet S.; Nowicki, Steve D.; Aceituno, Felipe F.; Nero, Damion; Kelfer, Jonathan; Thompson, Lee Parnell; Cabello, Juan M.; Davidson, Rebecca S.; Goldberg, Arthur P.; Shasha, Dennis E.; Coruzzi, Gloria M.; Gutiérrez, Rodrigo A.

    2010-01-01

    Data generation is no longer the limiting factor in advancing biological research. In addition, data integration, analysis, and interpretation have become key bottlenecks and challenges that biologists conducting genomic research face daily. To enable biologists to derive testable hypotheses from the increasing amount of genomic data, we have developed the VirtualPlant software platform. VirtualPlant enables scientists to visualize, integrate, and analyze genomic data from a systems biology perspective. VirtualPlant integrates genome-wide data concerning the known and predicted relationships among genes, proteins, and molecules, as well as genome-scale experimental measurements. VirtualPlant also provides visualization techniques that render multivariate information in visual formats that facilitate the extraction of biological concepts. Importantly, VirtualPlant helps biologists who are not trained in computer science to mine lists of genes, microarray experiments, and gene networks to address questions in plant biology, such as: What are the molecular mechanisms by which internal or external perturbations affect processes controlling growth and development? We illustrate the use of VirtualPlant with three case studies, ranging from querying a gene of interest to the identification of gene networks and regulatory hubs that control seed development. Whereas the VirtualPlant software was developed to mine Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) genomic data, its data structures, algorithms, and visualization tools are designed in a species-independent way. VirtualPlant is freely available at www.virtualplant.org. PMID:20007449

  16. Molecular phenology in plants: in natura systems biology for the comprehensive understanding of seasonal responses under natural environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudoh, Hiroshi

    2016-04-01

    Phenology refers to the study of seasonal schedules of organisms. Molecular phenology is defined here as the study of the seasonal patterns of organisms captured by molecular biology techniques. The history of molecular phenology is reviewed briefly in relation to advances in the quantification technology of gene expression. High-resolution molecular phenology (HMP) data have enabled us to study phenology with an approach of in natura systems biology. I review recent analyses of FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC), a temperature-responsive repressor of flowering, along the six steps in the typical flow of in natura systems biology. The extensive studies of the regulation of FLC have made this example a successful case in which a comprehensive understanding of gene functions has been progressing. The FLC-mediated long-term memory of past temperatures creates time lags with other seasonal signals, such as photoperiod and short-term temperature. Major signals that control flowering time have a phase lag between them under natural conditions, and hypothetical phase lag calendars are proposed as mechanisms of season detection in plants. Transcriptomic HMP brings a novel strategy to the study of molecular phenology, because it provides a comprehensive representation of plant functions. I discuss future perspectives of molecular phenology from the standpoints of molecular biology, evolutionary biology and ecology.

  17. Plant productivity and characterization of zeoponic substrates after three successive crops of radish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gruener, J. E.; Ming, Doug; Galindo, C., Jr.; Henderson, K. E.

    2006-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has developed advanced life support (ALS) systems for long duration space missions that incorporate plants to regenerate the atmosphere (CO2 to O2), recycle water (via evapotranspiration), and produce food. NASA has also developed a zeolite-based synthetic substrate consisting of clinoptilolite and synthetic apatite to support plant growth for ALS systems (Ming et al., 1995). The substrate is called zeoponics and has been designed to slowly release all plant essential elements into "soil" solution. The substrate consists of K- and NH4-exchanged clinoptilolite and a synthetic hydroxyapatite that has Mg, S, and the plant-essential micronutrients incorporated into its structure in addition to Ca and P. Plant performance in zeoponic substrates has been improved by the addition of dolomite pH buffers, nitrifying bacteria, and other calcium-bearing minerals (Henderson et al., 2000; Gruener et al., 2003). Wheat was used as the test crop for all of these studies. The objectives of this study were to expand upon the previous studies to determine the growth and nutrient uptake of radish in zeoponic substrates and to determine the nutrient availability of the zeoponic substrate after three successive radish crops.

  18. Phytochemical and Biological Activities of Four Wild Medicinal Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anwar Ali Shad

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The fruits of four wild plants, namely, Capparis decidua, Ficus carica, Syzygium cumini, and Ziziphus jujuba, are separately used as traditional dietary and remedial agents in remote areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The results of our study on these four plants revealed that the examined fruits were a valuable source of nutraceuticals and exhibited good level of antimicrobial activity. The fruits of these four investigated plants are promising source of polyphenols, flavonoids, alkaloids, terpenoids, and saponins. These four plants' fruits are good sources of iron, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium, and chromium. It was also observed that these fruits are potential source of antioxidant agent and the possible reason could be that these samples had good amount of phytochemicals. Hence, the proper propagation, conservation, and chemical investigation are recommended so that these fruits should be incorporated for the eradication of food and health related problems.

  19. Plant invasion across space and time: factors affecting nonindigenous species success during four stages of invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theoharides, Kathleen A; Dukes, Jeffrey S

    2007-01-01

    Invasive nonindigenous plant species (NIPS) threaten native diversity, alter ecosystem processes, and may interact with other components of global environmental change. Here, a general framework is outlined that attempts to connect patterns of plant invasion to processes underlying these patterns at four well-established spatio-temporal stages of the invasion process: transport, colonization, establishment, and landscape spread. At each stage we organize findings and ideas about the filters that limit NIPS success and the interaction of these filters with historical aspects of introduction events, NIPS traits, and ecosystem properties. While it remains difficult to draw conclusions about the risk of invasion across ecosystems, to delineate universal 'invader traits', or to predict large-scale extinctions following invasions, this review highlights the growing body of research that suggests that the success of invasive NIPS is controlled by a series of key processes or filters. These filters are common to all invasion events, and will interact throughout the stages of plant invasion, although the relative importance of a filter may be stage, species or location specific. It is suggested that both research and management programs may benefit from employing multiscale and stage approaches to studying and controlling invasion. We further use the framework to briefly examine potential interactions between climate change and filters that limit NIPS invasion.

  20. Level of Awareness of Biology and Geography Students Related to Recognizing Some Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aladag, Caner; Kaya, Bastürk; Dinç, Muhittin

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate the awareness of the geography and biology students about recognizing some plants which they see frequently around them in accordance with the information they gained during their education process. The sample of the study consists of 37 biology and 40 geography students studying at the Ahmet Kelesoglu…

  1. Rising CO2, climate change, and public health: Exploring the links to plant biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Although the issue of anthropogenic climate forcing and public health is widely recognized, one fundamental aspect has remained underappreciated; the impact of climatic change on plant biology and the well-being of human systems. To critically evaluate the extant and probable links between plant fun...

  2. Advances on plant-pathogen interactions from molecular toward systems biology perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peyraud, Rémi; Dubiella, Ullrich; Barbacci, Adelin; Genin, Stéphane; Raffaele, Sylvain; Roby, Dominique

    2016-11-21

    In the past 2 decades, progress in molecular analyses of the plant immune system has revealed key elements of a complex response network. Current paradigms depict the interaction of pathogen-secreted molecules with host target molecules leading to the activation of multiple plant response pathways. Further research will be required to fully understand how these responses are integrated in space and time, and exploit this knowledge in agriculture. In this review, we highlight systems biology as a promising approach to reveal properties of molecular plant-pathogen interactions and predict the outcome of such interactions. We first illustrate a few key concepts in plant immunity with a network and systems biology perspective. Next, we present some basic principles of systems biology and show how they allow integrating multiomics data and predict cell phenotypes. We identify challenges for systems biology of plant-pathogen interactions, including the reconstruction of multiscale mechanistic models and the connection of host and pathogen models. Finally, we outline studies on resistance durability through the robustness of immune system networks, the identification of trade-offs between immunity and growth and in silico plant-pathogen co-evolution as exciting perspectives in the field. We conclude that the development of sophisticated models of plant diseases incorporating plant, pathogen and climate properties represent a major challenge for agriculture in the future.

  3. The next green movement: Plant biology for the environment and sustainability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jez, Joseph M; Lee, Soon Goo; Sherp, Ashley M

    2016-09-16

    From domestication and breeding to the genetic engineering of crops, plants provide food, fuel, fibers, and feedstocks for our civilization. New research and discoveries aim to reduce the inputs needed to grow crops and to develop plants for environmental and sustainability applications. Faced with population growth and changing climate, the next wave of innovation in plant biology integrates technologies and approaches that span from molecular to ecosystem scales. Recent efforts to engineer plants for better nitrogen and phosphorus use, enhanced carbon fixation, and environmental remediation and to understand plant-microbiome interactions showcase exciting future directions for translational plant biology. These advances promise new strategies for the reduction of inputs to limit environmental impacts and improve agricultural sustainability. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  4. Plant Productivity and Characterization of Zeoponic Substrates after Three Successive Crops of Radish (Raphanus sativus L.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gruener, J. E.; Ming, Douglas W.; Galindo, C., Jr.; Henderson, K. E.; Golden, D. C.

    2007-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has developed a zeolite-based synthetic substrate, termed zeoponics. The zeoponic substrate (consisting of NH4(-) and K-exchanged clinoptilolite, synthetic apatite, and dolomite) provides all of the plant-essential nutrients through mineral dissolution and ion exchange, with only the addition of water. Previous studies have shown high productivity of wheat in zeoponic substrates; however, no experiments have been conducted on other crops. The objective of this study was to determine the productivity and nutrient uptake of radish (Raphanus sativus L.) grown in zeoponic substrates with three successive crops in the same substrate. Radish was chosen because of its sensitivities to NH4(+). Average fresh weights of edible roots were similar for radish grown in zeoponic substrates watered with deionized H2O (10.97 g/plant) and in potting mix control substrate irrigated with nutrient solution (10.92 g/plant). Average fresh weight production of edible roots for radish grown in same zeoponic substrate increased in yield over time with the lowest yield in the first crop (7.10 g/plant) and highest in the third crop (13.90 g/plant). The Ca plant tissue levels in radishes (1.8-2.9 wt. %) grown in zeoponic substrates are lower than the suggested sufficient range of 3.0-4.5 wt. % Ca; however, the Ca level is highest (2.9 wt. %) in radishes grown in the third crop in the same zeoponic substrates. The higher radish yield in the third crop was attributed to a reduction in an NH4(-) induced Ca deficiency that has been previously described for wheat grown in zeoponic substrates. The P levels in plant tissues of radish grown in the zeoponic substrates ranged from 0.94-1.15 wt. %; which is slightly higher than the sufficient levels of 0.3-0.7 wt. %. With the exception of Ca and P, other macronutrient and micronutrient levels in radish grown in zeoponic substrates were well within the recommended sufficient ranges. After three

  5. Phytochemicals and biological studies of plants in genus Hedysarum

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    In China, several species (Hedysarum polybotrys Hand.-Mazz., Hedysarum limprichtii Hlbr., Hedysarum vicioider Turcz. var. Taipeicum Hand.-Mazz. Liu, Hedysarum smithianum, et al.) of genus Hedysarum have a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). In TCM, these plants are used to increase the energy of the body. To date, 155 compounds, including flavonoids, triterpenes, coumarins, lignanoids, nitrogen compounds, sterols, carbohydrates, fatty compounds, and benzofuran, have been isolated from plants of the genus Hedysarum. Various chemical constituents contribute to the antioxidant, anti-tumor, anti-aging, anti-diabetic, and anti-hypertensive properties of these plants. Hedysarum species are used to treat infestation with gastrointestinal nematodes and may support the immune system and peripheral nervous system. In the present review, we summarize the research on the phytochemistry and pharmacology of Hedysarum species, which will be useful for better utilization of these important species in TCM. PMID:23866043

  6. Physics and the molecular revolution in plant biology: union needed for managing the future

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich Lüttge

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The question was asked if there is still a prominent role of biophysics in plant biology in an age when molecular biology appears to be dominating. Mathematical formation of theory is essential in systems biology, and mathematics is more inherent in biophysics than in molecular biology. A survey is made identifying and briefly characterizing fields of plant biology where approaches of biophysics remain essential. In transport at membranes electrophysiology and thermodynamics are biophysical topics. Water is a special molecule. Its transport follows the physical laws of osmosis and gradients of water potential on the background of physics of hydraulic architecture. Photobiology needs understanding of the physics of electro-magnetic radiation of quantitative nature in photosynthesis and of qualitative nature in perception by the photo-sensors cryptochromes, phototropins and phytochrome in environmental responses and development. Biophysical oscillators can play a role in biological timing by the circadian clock. Integration in the self-organization of modules, such as roots, stems and leaves, for the emergence of whole plants as unitary organisms needs storage and transport of information where physical modes of signaling are essential with cross talks between electrical and hydraulic signals and with chemical signals. Examples are gravitropism and root-shoot interactions in water relations. All of these facets of plant biophysics overlie plant molecular biology and exchange with it. It is advocated that a union of approaches of plant molecular biology and biophysics needs to be cultivated. In many cases it is already operative. In bionics biophysics is producing output for practical applications linking biology with technology. Biomimetic engineering intrinsically uses physical approaches. An extreme biophysical perspective is looking out for life in space. Sustained and increased practice of biophysics with teaching and research deserves strong

  7. Mycorrhizal fungal growth responds to soil characteristics, but not host plant identity, during a primary lacustrine dune succession.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sikes, Benjamin A; Maherali, Hafiz; Klironomos, John N

    2014-04-01

    Soil factors and host plant identity can both affect the growth and functioning of mycorrhizal fungi. Both components change during primary succession, but it is unknown if their relative importance to mycorrhizas also changes. This research tested how soil type and host plant differences among primary successional stages determine the growth and plant effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungal communities. Mycorrhizal fungal community, plant identity, and soil conditions were manipulated among three stages of a lacustrine sand dune successional series in a fully factorial greenhouse experiment. Late succession AM fungi produced more arbuscules and soil hyphae when grown in late succession soils, although the community was from the same narrow phylogenetic group as those in intermediate succession. AM fungal growth did not differ between host species, and plant growth was similarly unaffected by different AM fungal communities. These results indicate that though ecological filtering and/or adaptation of AM fungi occurs during this primary dune succession, it more strongly reflects matching between fungi and soils, rather than interactions between fungi and host plants. Thus, AM fungal performance during this succession may not depend directly on the sequence of plant community succession.

  8. Increasing Vitamin C Content in Plant Foods to Improve Their Nutritional Value—Successes and Challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel R. Gallie

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Vitamin C serves as a cofactor in the synthesis of collagen needed to support cardiovascular function, maintenance of cartilage, bones, and teeth, as well as being required in wound healing. Although vitamin C is essential, humans are one of the few mammalian species unable to synthesize the vitamin and must obtain it through dietary sources. Only low levels of the vitamin are required to prevent scurvy but subclinical vitamin C deficiency can cause less obvious symptoms such as cardiovascular impairment. Up to a third of the adult population in the U.S. obtains less than the recommended amount of vitamin C from dietary sources of which plant-based foods constitute the major source. Consequently, strategies to increase vitamin C content in plants have been developed over the last decade and include increasing its synthesis as well as its recycling, i.e., the reduction of the oxidized form of ascorbic acid that is produced in reactions back into its reduced form. Increasing vitamin C levels in plants, however, is not without consequences. This review provides an overview of the approaches used to increase vitamin C content in plants and the successes achieved. Also discussed are some of the potential limitations of increasing vitamin C and how these may be overcome.

  9. Collaborative planning. Factor of success during power plant planning; Collaborative planning. Erfolgsfaktor in der Kraftwerksplanung

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alzinger, R.; Rudolph, D.; Ressel, H. [Envi Con und Plant Engineering GmbH (Germany)

    2007-07-01

    At present there are big challenges for power suppliers because of running up renewals of German power plant parks. In addition to foreseeable bottlenecks in supply of plant components and plant systems there also has to be found a solution for procurement and execution of engineering capacities. For coal-fired large-scale power plants the realization of the project is provided in builders own direction in association with purchase of single components and systems in cooperation with an engineering company for the overall planning. The technical contribution describes the basic possibilities of development view as well as the assignments for overall planning as 'owners engineer' in project phases. Part and parcel of the project success is a clear task sharing between building owners and designers as well as the application of data bases and planning tools with a wide range acceptance. The complexity and multitude of the involved participant is allowed for the essential assignment of highly effective and efficiently planning software. In the process it is apparently that specific major project requirements just can be observed, by ad hoc developed applications such as a document management system, stereoscopic planning or a based on web project platform. The possibilities of the information technology advise a central data handling to potentiate paperless engineering. For this purpose an effective and safe IT-structure must be made available. By dint of this IT-structure with an Information-Lifecycle-Management (ILM) also the operating stage can be included already. (orig.)

  10. Biological reduction of graphene oxide using plant leaf extracts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Geummi; Kim, Beom Soo

    2014-01-01

    Two-dimensional graphene has attracted significant attention due to its unique mechanical, electrical, thermal, and optical properties. Most commonly employed methods to chemically reduce graphene oxide to graphene use hydrazine or its derivatives as the reducing agent. However, they are highly hazardous and explosive. Various phytochemicals obtained from different natural sources such as leaves and peels of a plant are used as reducing agents in the preparation of different gold, silver, copper, and platinum nanoparticles. In this study, seven plant leaf extracts (Cherry, Magnolia, Platanus, Persimmon, Pine, Maple, and Ginkgo) were compared for their abilities to reduce graphene oxide. The optimized reaction conditions for the reduction of graphene oxide were determined as follows. Type of plant: Cherry (Prunus serrulata), reaction time: 12 h, composition of the reaction mixture: 16.7% v/v of plant leaf extract in total suspension, and temperature: 95°C. The degree of reduction caused by Cherry leaf extract was analyzed by elemental analysis and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The reduction of graphene oxide was also confirmed by ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy, Fourier transform-infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy, and thermogravimetric analysis.

  11. Plant Collections Online: Using Digital Herbaria in Biology Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flannery, Maura C.

    2013-01-01

    Herbaria are collections of preserved plants specimens, some of which date back to the 16th century. They are essential to botanical research, especially in systematics. They can also be important historical documents. The collections of Lewis and Clark, Carolus Linnaeus, and Charles Darwin, to name a few, are primary sources for the study of…

  12. Systems and synthetic biology approaches to alter plant cell walls and reduce biomass recalcitrance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalluri, Udaya C; Yin, Hengfu; Yang, Xiaohan; Davison, Brian H

    2014-12-01

    Fine-tuning plant cell wall properties to render plant biomass more amenable to biofuel conversion is a colossal challenge. A deep knowledge of the biosynthesis and regulation of plant cell wall and a high-precision genome engineering toolset are the two essential pillars of efforts to alter plant cell walls and reduce biomass recalcitrance. The past decade has seen a meteoric rise in use of transcriptomics and high-resolution imaging methods resulting in fresh insights into composition, structure, formation and deconstruction of plant cell walls. Subsequent gene manipulation approaches, however, commonly include ubiquitous mis-expression of a single candidate gene in a host that carries an intact copy of the native gene. The challenges posed by pleiotropic and unintended changes resulting from such an approach are moving the field towards synthetic biology approaches. Synthetic biology builds on a systems biology knowledge base and leverages high-precision tools for high-throughput assembly of multigene constructs and pathways, precision genome editing and site-specific gene stacking, silencing and/or removal. Here, we summarize the recent breakthroughs in biosynthesis and remodelling of major secondary cell wall components, assess the impediments in obtaining a systems-level understanding and explore the potential opportunities in leveraging synthetic biology approaches to reduce biomass recalcitrance. Published 2014. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA. Plant Biotechnology Journal published by Society for Experimental Biology and The Association of Applied Biologists and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. The succession of late Palaeozoic and Triassic plant assemblages of eastern China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xingxue, Li; Xiuyuan, Wu

    This is a study dealing with the succession of the megafloras or plant assemblages of China's eastern part, ranging from the early Devonian to later Triassic. The plant assemblages in ascending order are as follows: 1. In the three floras formerly recognized for the early, middle and late Devonian, the latter two are here revised as the Protolepidodendron flora and the Leptophloeum-Archaeopteris flora, respectively. 2. Since the two-fold system of the Carboniferous has been currently accepted in China and the mid-Carboniferous boundary in NW China is drawn at the top of the Tsingyuan Formation (s.s.), the latest plant assemblage of the Lower Carboniferous is better named the Eleutherophyllum waldenburgense-Linopteris densissima-Pecopteris aspera Assemblage and its corresponding plant assemblage in SE China being tentatively named the Paripteris gigantea-Karinopteris acuta f. obtusa Assemblage. Moreover, recent studies on the Penchi flora of north China reveal that some typical Cathaysian elements, e.g. Lepidodendron posthumii, Tingia spp., occurred in the Penchi Formation, of which the plant assemblage is revised as the Paripteris gigantea-Linopteris neuropteroides-Conchophyllum richthofeni Assemblage, known probably as the first assemblage assigned to the early Cathaysian flora in east Asia. 3. The latest Permian (Tartarian) of north China is represented by the Ullmannia bronnii-Yuania magnifolia Assemblage based on recent studies of the flora of the Shihchienfeng (Sunjiagou) Formation. 4. Recent studies on the early Triassic flora in north China disclose that the flora may be named the Pleuromeia flora, which can be subdivided into the early Triassic Pl. jiaochengensis assemblage and the late early Triassic Pl. sternbergii Assemblage. In addition, problems about the correlation for some of the representative formations and their palaeophytogeographical regions are also discussed.

  14. Biologically Active Substances of Plants from Sali x L. Genus

    OpenAIRE

    O. O. Frolova; E. V. Kompantseva; T. M. Dementieva

    2016-01-01

    The review systematizes data about chemical composition of bark, leaves, inflorescences, and sprouts of different species of Salix L. The closest attention is payed to investigations of Salix, which has been recently carried out in our country and abroad. For every group of biologically active substances described in Salix there are data about suppressed types of pharmacological activity.

  15. Biologically Active Substances of Plants from Sali x L. Genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. O. Frolova

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The review systematizes data about chemical composition of bark, leaves, inflorescences, and sprouts of different species of Salix L. The closest attention is payed to investigations of Salix, which has been recently carried out in our country and abroad. For every group of biologically active substances described in Salix there are data about suppressed types of pharmacological activity.

  16. Plant Biology and Biogeochemistry Department annual project report 1999

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, A.; Gissel Nielsen, G.; Giese, H.

    2000-01-01

    project summarizes and highlights our results and achievements to give an idea of the researchdirections in the Department. Some 160 persons, including staff, undergraduate students, postgraduate scientists and visiting scientists from all over the world, address our research goals. The Department...... on the environment. This knowledge will lead to a greater prosperity and welfare for agriculture, industry and consumers in Denmark. The research approach in the Department is mainly experimental and the projects areorganized in six research programmes: 1. Plant-Microbe Symbioses, 2. Plant Products and Recycling......’s contribution to education and training ispresented. Lists of publications, papers accepted for publications, guest lecturers, exchange of scientists and lectures and poster presentations at meetings are included in the report. Names of the scientific, technical and administrative staff members...

  17. Phytochemicals and biological studies of plants in genus Hedysarum

    OpenAIRE

    Dong, Yinmao; Tang, Dongyan; Zhang, Na; Li, Yue; Zhang, Chunhong; Li, Li; Li, Minhui

    2013-01-01

    In China, several species (Hedysarum polybotrys Hand.-Mazz., Hedysarum limprichtii Hlbr., Hedysarum vicioider Turcz. var. Taipeicum Hand.-Mazz. Liu, Hedysarum smithianum, et al.) of genus Hedysarum have a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). In TCM, these plants are used to increase the energy of the body. To date, 155 compounds, including flavonoids, triterpenes, coumarins, lignanoids, nitrogen compounds, sterols, carbohydrates, fatty compounds, and benzofuran, have bee...

  18. An Overview of the Biology of the Desiccation-tolerant Resurrection Plant Myrothamnus flabellifolia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, John P.; Lindsey, George G.; Farrant, Jill M.; Brandt, Wolf F.

    2007-01-01

    Background Myrothamnus flabellifolia is unique as the only woody resurrection plant. It is an important plant in southern Africa because of its widespread occurrence and usage in African medicine and traditional culture. Many reports have investigated facets of its biology and the mechanisms associated with its desiccation tolerance. Scope The general biology of the woody resurrection plant Myrothamnus flabellifolia is reviewed. The review focuses on the geography and ecology, systematic placement, evolution, morphology and reproductive ecology of M. flabellifolia as well as the wood anatomy and re-filling mechanism. In addition, the desiccation tolerance, ethnobotanical importance and medicinal properties of the plant are reviewed. Also, future research avenues are suggested, in particular the necessity to research the biogeography and systematics of the species and the role of the polyphenols present, as well as the molecular basis of the plant's desiccation tolerance. PMID:17218343

  19. Multifarious roles of intrinsic disorder in proteins illustrate its broad impact on plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xiaolin; Rikkerink, Erik H A; Jones, William T; Uversky, Vladimir N

    2013-01-01

    Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs) are highly abundant in eukaryotic proteomes. Plant IDPs play critical roles in plant biology and often act as integrators of signals from multiple plant regulatory and environmental inputs. Binding promiscuity and plasticity allow IDPs to interact with multiple partners in protein interaction networks and provide important functional advantages in molecular recognition through transient protein-protein interactions. Short interaction-prone segments within IDPs, termed molecular recognition features, represent potential binding sites that can undergo disorder-to-order transition upon binding to their partners. In this review, we summarize the evidence for the importance of IDPs in plant biology and evaluate the functions associated with intrinsic disorder in five different types of plant protein families experimentally confirmed as IDPs. Functional studies of these proteins illustrate the broad impact of disorder on many areas of plant biology, including abiotic stress, transcriptional regulation, light perception, and development. Based on the roles of disorder in the protein-protein interactions, we propose various modes of action for plant IDPs that may provide insight for future experimental approaches aimed at understanding the molecular basis of protein function within important plant pathways.

  20. Genomics-Based Discovery of Plant Genes for Synthetic Biology of Terpenoid Fragrances: A Case Study in Sandalwood oil Biosynthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Celedon, J M; Bohlmann, J

    2016-01-01

    Terpenoid fragrances are powerful mediators of ecological interactions in nature and have a long history of traditional and modern industrial applications. Plants produce a great diversity of fragrant terpenoid metabolites, which make them a superb source of biosynthetic genes and enzymes. Advances in fragrance gene discovery have enabled new approaches in synthetic biology of high-value speciality molecules toward applications in the fragrance and flavor, food and beverage, cosmetics, and other industries. Rapid developments in transcriptome and genome sequencing of nonmodel plant species have accelerated the discovery of fragrance biosynthetic pathways. In parallel, advances in metabolic engineering of microbial and plant systems have established platforms for synthetic biology applications of some of the thousands of plant genes that underlie fragrance diversity. While many fragrance molecules (eg, simple monoterpenes) are abundant in readily renewable plant materials, some highly valuable fragrant terpenoids (eg, santalols, ambroxides) are rare in nature and interesting targets for synthetic biology. As a representative example for genomics/transcriptomics enabled gene and enzyme discovery, we describe a strategy used successfully for elucidation of a complete fragrance biosynthetic pathway in sandalwood (Santalum album) and its reconstruction in yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae). We address questions related to the discovery of specific genes within large gene families and recovery of rare gene transcripts that are selectively expressed in recalcitrant tissues. To substantiate the validity of the approaches, we describe the combination of methods used in the gene and enzyme discovery of a cytochrome P450 in the fragrant heartwood of tropical sandalwood, responsible for the fragrance defining, final step in the biosynthesis of (Z)-santalols. © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Effect of long-term successive storm flows on water reclamation plant resilience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Jun-Jie; Anderson, Paul R

    2017-03-15

    A water reclamation plant (WRP) needs to be resilient to successfully operate through different kinds of perturbations. Perturbations such as storm events, especially long-term successive storm flows, can adversely affect operations. A better understanding of these effects can provide benefits for plant operation, in terms of effluent quality and energy efficiency. However, the concept of resilience for a WRP has not been widely studied, and we are not aware of any studies specifically related to storm flows. In this work we applied measures of resistance and recovery time to quantify resilience, and used a WRP simulation model to investigate how different storm flow characteristics (flowrate and duration) and the amount of aeration influence resilience. Not surprisingly, increasing storm flowrate leads to decreasing resilience. Although the aeration rate plays an important role in determining resilience, there is an aeration threshold (6 m(3)/s for our WRP model); higher aeration rates do not increase resilience. Results suggest that aeration costs could be reduced by as much as 50% while still maintaining the resilience needed to meet effluent quality permit requirements through the perturbations examined in this study.

  2. Central African biomes and forest succession stages derived from modern pollen data and plant functional types

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Lebamba

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available New detailed vegetation reconstructions are proposed in Atlantic Central Africa from a modern pollen data set derived from 199 sites (Cameroon, Gabon and Congo including 131 new sites. In this study, the concept of plant functional classification is improved with new and more detailed plant functional types (PFTs and new aggregations of pollen taxa. Using the biomisation method, we reconstructed (1 modern potential biomes and (2 potential succession stages of forest regeneration, a new approach in Atlantic Central African vegetation dynamics and ecosystem functioning reconstruction. When compared to local vegetation, potential biomes are correctly reconstructed (97.5% of the sites and tropical rain forest (TRFO biome is well identified from tropical seasonal forest (TSFO biome. When the potential biomes are superimposed on the White's vegetation map, only 76.4% of the sites are correctly reconstructed. But using botanical data, correspondence and cluster analyses, the 43 sites from Congo (Mayombe evidence more affinities with those of central Gabon and so they can also be considered as correctly reconstructed as TRFO biome and White's map should be revised. In terms of potential succession stages of forest regeneration, the mature forest (TMFO is well differentiated from the secondary forest (TSFE, but inside this latter group, the young and the pioneer stages are not clearly identified due probably to their low sampling representation. Moreover, linked to their progressive and mosaic character, the boundaries between two forest biomes or two forest stages are not clearly detected and need also a more intensive sampling in such transitions.

  3. Strategies for the prevention of a successful biological warfare aerosol attack.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiener, S L

    1996-05-01

    Biological warfare (BW) aerosol attacks are different from chemical attacks in that they may provide no warning/all clear signals that allow the soldier to put on or remove his M17/M40 protective mask. Methods are now being perfected to detect a BW aerosol cloud using an airborne (helicopter) pulsed laser system to scan the lower altitudes upwind from a troop concentration of corps size, and to sample and analyze the nature of the aerosol within a brief time interval. This system has certain limitations and vulnerabilities, since it is designed specifically to detect a line-type aerosol attack. Provision of, training with, and field use of a lightweight dust mist or HEPA filter respirator for each soldier is proposed for protection against undetected aerosol attacks. This particulate filter respirator would be issued in addition to the M17/M40 mask. Such a BW respirator will be able to purify the soldier's air by removing particles in the 0.3- to 15-micro m-diameter range with an efficiency of 98 to 100%. Particle size of BW aerosols is in the same range, with an optimum size for high-efficiency casualty production of 1 to 5 micro m mass median diameter. The proposed BW respirator will be lightweight; will require low inhalation pressures; will be comfortable to wear for prolonged periods; will not interfere with vision, hearing, and communication; and will not degrade overall effectiveness and performance to the degree observed with the M17/M40 masks. Such respirators would be worn as part of a contingency defense against an enemy likely to use BW agents. This respirator could be worn for prolonged periods when under threat of an undetectable BW attack during weather conditions favorable to the success of such an attack (i.e., low wind velocity and temperature inversion in the target area). In addition, tactically important assets such as command and control centers and missile batteries can also be protected continuously by air filtration systems powered by

  4. Success and failure of biological treatment in systemic lupus erythematosus: A critical analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatto, Mariele; Saccon, Francesca; Zen, Margherita; Bettio, Silvano; Iaccarino, Luca; Punzi, Leonardo; Doria, Andrea

    2016-11-01

    Patients affected with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) still display increased mortality and decreased quality of life in respect to general population. The major determinant of poor long term prognosis is organ damage, which is predictive of more damage and death. Damage is in turn triggered by uncontrolled disease activity and especially by the long-standing corticosteroid use which often accompanies SLE patients over their disease course, owing both to the need of reaching disease remission and to the habit of keeping patients on a small steroid dose for an indefinite period of time. Hence, the need for new drugs and therapeutic strategies aiming at minimizing damage accrual through a better control of disease activity and a steroid-sparing potential is paramount. So far, however, the therapeutic strategy in SLE requires a multitarget approach which is not devoid of widespread immunesuppression. In fact, several studies have been carried out in recent years targeting both the adaptive and the innate immune system, the majority of which did not achieve their primary endpoint, being often divergent from successful clinical experience and thereby committing physician to off-label use of targeted therapies in face of refractory SLE manifestations. The study designs and the chosen endpoints were often blamed for inadequacy, being at least in part responsible for study failures. In this review, we go over major clinical trials conducted in SLE by analyzing any critical aspects related to study design, predefined endpoints and biological activity of novel compounds that may have hampered study outcome, despite the great effort of providing less toxic drugs within a targeted, pathogenic-based approach.

  5. A robust family of Golden Gate Agrobacterium vectors for plant synthetic biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shahram eEmami

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Tools that allow for rapid, accurate and inexpensive assembly of multi-component combinatorial libraries of DNA for transformation into plants will accelerate the progress of synthetic biology research. Recent progress in molecular cloning methods has vastly expanded the repertoire with which plant biologists can engineer a transgene. Here we describe a new set of binary vectors for use in Agrobacterium-mediated plant transformation that utilizes the Golden-Gate cloning approach. Our optimized protocol facilitates the rapid and inexpensive generation of multi-component transgenes for later introduction into plants.

  6. Plants in silico: why, why now and what?--an integrative platform for plant systems biology research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xin-Guang; Lynch, Jonathan P; LeBauer, David S; Millar, Andrew J; Stitt, Mark; Long, Stephen P

    2016-05-01

    A paradigm shift is needed and timely in moving plant modelling from largely isolated efforts to a connected community endeavour that can take full advantage of advances in computer science and in mechanistic understanding of plant processes. Plants in silico (Psi) envisions a digital representation of layered dynamic modules, linking from gene networks and metabolic pathways through to cellular organization, tissue, organ and whole plant development, together with resource capture and use efficiency in dynamic competitive environments, ultimately allowing a mechanistically rich simulation of the plant or of a community of plants in silico. The concept is to integrate models or modules from different layers of organization spanning from genome to phenome to ecosystem in a modular framework allowing the use of modules of varying mechanistic detail representing the same biological process. Developments in high-performance computing, functional knowledge of plants, the internet and open-source version controlled software make achieving the concept realistic. Open source will enhance collaboration and move towards testing and consensus on quantitative theoretical frameworks. Importantly, Psi provides a quantitative knowledge framework where the implications of a discovery at one level, for example, single gene function or developmental response, can be examined at the whole plant or even crop and natural ecosystem levels.

  7. A review of the influence of root-associating fungi and root exudates on the success of invasive plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cindy Bongard

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Plant-fungal interactions are essential for understanding the distribution and abundance of plants species. Recently, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal (AMF partners of non-indigenous invasive plants have been hypothesized to be a critical factor influencing the invasion processes. AMF are known to improve nutrient and moisture uptake, as well as disrupt parasitic and pathogenic microbes in the host plant. Such benefits may enable invaders to establish significant and persistent populations in environments previously dominated by natives. Coupling these findings with studies on invader pathogen-disrupting root exudates is not well documented in the literature describing plant invasion strategies. The interaction effects of altered AMF associations and the impact of invader root exudates would be more relevant than understanding the AMF dynamics or the phytochemistry of successful invaders in isolation, particularly given that AMF and root exudates can have a similar role in pathogen control but function quite differently. One means to achieve this goal is to assess these strategies concurrently by characterizing both the general (mostly pathogens or commensals and AM-specific fungal colonization patterns found in field collected root samples of successful invaders, native plants growing within dense patches of invaders, and native plants growing separately from invaders. In this review I examine the emerging evidence of the ways in which AMF-plant interactions and the production of defensive root exudates provide pathways to invasive plant establishment and expansion, and conclude that interaction studies must be pursued to achieve a more comprehensive understanding of successful plant invasion.

  8. Succession Stages of Tundra Plant Communities Following Wildfire Disturbance in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breen, A. L.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Jones, B. M.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid climate change is affecting climate-sensitive disturbance regimes throughout the world. In particular, the impacts of climate change on Arctic disturbance regimes are poorly understood because landscape-scale disturbances are infrequent or occur in remote localities. Wildfire in Arctic Alaska is presently limited by ignition source and favorable burn weather. With rapid climate change, a lengthening growing season, and subsequent increase in plant biomass and productivity, wildfire frequency and annual area burned in tundra ecosystems is expected to increase over the next century. Yet, post-fire tundra vegetation succession is inadequately characterized except at a few point locations. We identify succession stages of tussock tundra communities following wildfire using a chronosequence of 65 relevés in 10 tundra fire scars (1971-2011) and nearby unburned tundra from sites on the Seward Peninsula and northern foothills of the Brooks Range. We used the Braun-Blanquét approach to classify plant communities, and applied nonmetric multidimentional scaling (NMDS) to identify ecological gradients underlying community differentiation. The ordination revealed a clear differentiation between unburned and burned tundra communities. Ecological gradients, reflected by ordination axes, correspond to fire history (e.g., time since last fire, number of times burned, burn severity) and a complex productivity gradient. Post-fire species richness is less than unburned tundra; primarily reflected as a decrease in lichen species and turnover of bryophyte species immediately post-fire. Species richness of grasses increases post-fire and is greatest in communities that burned more than once in the past 30 years. Shrub cover and total aboveground biomass are greatest in repeat burn sites. We review and discuss our results focusing on the implications of a changing tundra fire regime, its effect on vegetation succession trajectories, and subsequent rates of carbon sequestration and

  9. Student Success in Face-to-Face and Online Sections of Biology Courses at a Community College in East Tennessee

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garman, Deanna Essington

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine if there were significant differences in student success in face-to-face and online biology courses as categorized by gender, major, and age; and as measured by lecture grades, lab grades, and final course grades. The data used for analyses included data from 170 face-to-face sections and 127…

  10. Reproductive biology in an invasive plant Solidago canadensis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    HUANG Hua; GUO Shuiliang; CHEN Guoqi

    2007-01-01

    Solidago canadensis,a perennial Compositae plant originating from North America,was introduced into China as a horticultural plant in 1935.Under natural conditions,S.canadensis allocates large amounts of energy to sexual reproduction and produces many seeds,which reflects an r-strategy with high seed number and small seed size.In addition,naturalized populations have a great capacity to grow clonally with underground stems.S.canadensis has become an invasive weed in eastern China,and has caused serious damages to agricultural production and ecosystems in several provinces in China.In order to understand the reproductive characteristics of S.canadensis and effectively control its spread,we examined soil conditions,seed characteristics,seed germination and the capacity for asexual reproduction in different plant parts.We investigated the population dispersion of S.canadensis in fixed sites for three years,and analyzed the seasonal dynamics of the morphological parameters of the underground parts and the caloric values of different organs of S.canadensis.We also compared differences in the root systems of S.canadensis and composite exotic weeds.The following results were obtained:1)Under natural conditions,the germination season of S.canadensis lasts from March to October,with a peak from April to May.Vegetative growth and asexual reproduction are especially vigorous during summer due to high temperatures and soil drought stress.On the other hand,the rainy season proves suitable for seed germination.Most S.canadensis flower between September and January,and fruit in late October.A mature plant can produce about 20000 seeds.The mean weight of 1000 seeds ranges from 0.045 g to 0.050 g,and the mean seed moisture content ranges from 60% to 80%.The light-winged seeds disperse readily by air,water,vehicles,human activity or through livestock.2)S.canadensis seeds have a wide tolerance for different values of pH,salinity and soil moisture.The mean percent germination of seeds

  11. Psychological factors of professional success of nuclear power plant main control room operators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kosenkov A.A.

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Aim: to conduct a comparative analysis of the psychological characteristics of the most and least successful main control room operators. Material and Methods. Two NPP staff groups: the most and least successful main control room operators, who worked in routine operating conditions, were surveyed. Expert evaluation method has been applied to identify the groups. The subjects were administered the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI, Cattell's Sixteen Personality Factor Questionnaire (16PF form A and Raven's Progressive Matrices test. Results. Numerous significant psychological differences between the groups of most and least successful control room operators were obtained: the best operators were significantly more introverted and correctly solved more logical tasks with smaller percentage of mistakes under time pressure than worst ones. Conclusions: 1. The psychodiagnostic methods used in the study were adequate to meet research objective 2. Tendency to introversion, as well as developed the ability to solve logic problems undertime pressure, apparently, are important professional qualities for control room operators. These indicators should be considered in the process of psychological selection and professional guidance of nuclear power plant operators.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Integration of plant defense traits with biological control of arthropod pests: challenges and opportunities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie A Peterson

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Crop plants exhibit a wide diversity of defensive traits and strategies to protect themselves from damage by herbivorous pests and disease. These defensive traits may be naturally occurring or artificially selected through crop breeding, including introduction via genetic engineering. While these traits can have obvious and direct impacts on herbivorous pests, many have profound effects on higher trophic levels, including the natural enemies of herbivores. Multi-trophic effects of host plant resistance have the potential to influence, both positively and negatively, biological control. Plant defense traits can influence both the numerical and functional responses of natural enemies; these interactions can be semiochemically-, plant toxin-, plant nutrient-, and/or physically-mediated. Case studies involving predators, parasitoids, and pathogens of crop pests will be presented and discussed. These diverse groups of natural enemies may respond differently to crop plant traits based on their own unique biology and the ecological niches they fill. Genetically modified crop plants that have been engineered to express transgenic products affecting herbivorous pests are an additional consideration. For the most part, transgenic plant incorporated protectant (PIP traits are compatible with biological control due to their selective toxicity to targeted pests and relatively low non-target impacts, although transgenic crops may have indirect effects on higher trophic levels and arthropod communities mediated by lower host or prey number and/or quality. Host plant resistance and biological control are two of the key pillars of integrated pest management; their potential interactions, whether they are synergistic, complementary, or disruptive, are key in understanding and achieving sustainable and effective pest management.

  15. Integration of Plant Defense Traits with Biological Control of Arthropod Pests: Challenges and Opportunities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Julie A; Ode, Paul J; Oliveira-Hofman, Camila; Harwood, James D

    2016-01-01

    Crop plants exhibit a wide diversity of defensive traits and strategies to protect themselves from damage by herbivorous pests and disease. These defensive traits may be naturally occurring or artificially selected through crop breeding, including introduction via genetic engineering. While these traits can have obvious and direct impacts on herbivorous pests, many have profound effects on higher trophic levels, including the natural enemies of herbivores. Multi-trophic effects of host plant resistance have the potential to influence, both positively and negatively, biological control. Plant defense traits can influence both the numerical and functional responses of natural enemies; these interactions can be semiochemically, plant toxin-, plant nutrient-, and/or physically mediated. Case studies involving predators, parasitoids, and pathogens of crop pests will be presented and discussed. These diverse groups of natural enemies may respond differently to crop plant traits based on their own unique biology and the ecological niches they fill. Genetically modified crop plants that have been engineered to express transgenic products affecting herbivorous pests are an additional consideration. For the most part, transgenic plant incorporated protectant (PIP) traits are compatible with biological control due to their selective toxicity to targeted pests and relatively low non-target impacts, although transgenic crops may have indirect effects on higher trophic levels and arthropod communities mediated by lower host or prey number and/or quality. Host plant resistance and biological control are two of the key pillars of integrated pest management; their potential interactions, whether they are synergistic, complementary, or disruptive, are key in understanding and achieving sustainable and effective pest management.

  16. Advances and Developing Tendency of Water Use Efficiency in Plant Biology

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN Zhao-bo; TANG Jiao-wen; ZHANG Fu

    2009-01-01

    Biological water saving is one of the major fields of water saving agriculture in the future and has an enormous potential in agricultural production. In this paper, the necessity and urgency of developing high water use efficiency in plant biology were dissertated firstly, and the research progresses at home and abroad were reviewed as following aspects: mechanisms of drought resistance and high water use efficiency, criterions for identifying and evaluating drought resistance and water use efficiency, genetic improvement for drought resistance and water use efficiency, water saving irrigation technology based on the physiological regulation and control in crop plants. Major problems in the research field at present were put forward, and development tendency of water use efficiency in plant biology in the future were also discussed.

  17. Explaining plant-soil diversity in Alpine ecosystems: more than just time since ecosystem succession started

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lane, Stuart; Baetz, Nico; Borgeaud, Laure; Verrecchia, Eric; Vittoz, Pascal

    2014-05-01

    Ecosystem succession in Alpine environments has been a focus of research for many decades. Following from the classic ideas of Jenny (1941, 1961), following perturbation, an ecosystem (flora, fauna and soil) should evolve as a function of time at a rate conditioned by external variables (relief, climate, geology). More recently, biogeomorphologists have focused upon the notion of co-evolution of geomorphic processes with ecosystems over very short through to very long (evolutionary) time-scales. Alpine environments have been a particular focus of models of co-evolution, as a means of understanding the rate of plant colonization of previously glaciated terrain. However, work in this field has tended to adopt an over simplified view of the relationship between perturbation and succession, including: how the landform and ecosystem itself conditions the impact of a perturbation to create a complex spatial impact; and how perturbations are not simply ecosystem destroyers but can be a significant source of ecosystem resources. What this means is that at the within landform scale, there may well be a complex and dynamic topographic and sedimentological template that co-evolves with the development of soil, flora and fauna. In this paper, we present and test conceptual models for such co-evolution for an Alpine alluvial fan and an Alpine piedmont braided river. We combine detailed floristic inventory with soil inventory, survey of edaphic variables above and below ground (e.g. vertical and lateral sedimentological structure, using electrical resistance tomography) and the analysis of historical aerial imagery. The floristic inventory shows the existence of a suite of distinct plant communities within each landform. Time since last perturbation is not a useful explanatory variable of the spatial distribution of these communities because: (1) perturbation impacts are spatially variable, as conditioned by the extent distribution of topographic, edaphic and ecological

  18. Population dynamics of bacteria involved in enhanced biological phosphorus removal in Danish wastewater treatment plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mielczarek, Artur Tomasz; Nguyen, Hien Thi Thu; Nielsen, Jeppe Lund; Nielsen, Per Halkjær

    2013-03-15

    The enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) process is increasingly popular as a sustainable method for removal of phosphorus (P) from wastewater. This study consisted of a comprehensive three-year investigation of the identity and population dynamics of polyphosphate-accumulating organisms (PAOs) and glycogen-accumulating organisms (GAOs) in 28 Danish municipal wastewater treatment plants with nutrient removal. Fluorescence in situ hybridization was applied to quantify ten probe-defined populations of PAO and GAO that in total constituted a large fraction (30% on average) of the entire microbial community targeted by the EUBmix probes. Two PAO genera, Accumulibacter and Tetrasphaera, were very abundant in all EBPR plants (average of 3.7% and 27% of all bacteria, respectively), and their abundance was relatively stable in the Danish full-scale plants without clear temporal variations. GAOs were occasionally present in some plants (Competibacter in 11 plants, Defluviicoccus in 6 plants) and were consistent in only a few plants. This shows that these were not core species in the EBPR communities. The total GAO abundance was always lower than that of Accumulibacter. In plants without EBPR design, the abundance of PAO and GAO was significantly lower. Competibacter correlated in general with high fraction of industrial wastewater. In specific plants Accumulibacter correlated with high C/P ratio of the wastewater and Tetrasphaera with high organic loading. Interestingly, the relative microbial composition of the PAO/GAO species was unique to each plant over time, which gives a characteristic plant-specific "fingerprint".

  19. Biological support media influence the bacterial biofouling community in reverse osmosis water reclamation demonstration plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrera, Isabel; Mas, Jordi; Taberna, Elisenda; Sanz, Joan; Sánchez, Olga

    2015-01-01

    The diversity of the bacterial community developed in different stages of two reverse osmosis (RO) water reclamation demonstration plants designed in a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in Tarragona (Spain) was characterized by applying 454-pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene. The plants were fed by secondary treated effluent to a conventional pretreatment train prior to the two-pass RO system. Plants differed in the material used in the filtration process, which was sand in one demonstration plant and Scandinavian schists in the second plant. The results showed the presence of a highly diverse and complex community in the biofilms, mainly composed of members of the Betaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes in all stages, with the presence of some typical wastewater bacteria, suggesting a feed water origin. Community similarities analyses revealed that samples clustered according to filter type, highlighting the critical influence of the biological supporting medium in biofilm community structure.

  20. Can resource-use traits predict native vs. exotic plant success in carbon amended soils?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steers, Robert J; Funk, Jennifer L; Allen, Edith B

    2011-06-01

    Productivity in desert ecosystems is primarily limited by water followed by nitrogen availability. In the deserts of southern California, nitrogen additions have increased invasive annual plant abundance. Similar findings from other ecosystems have led to a general acceptance that invasive plants, especially annual grasses, are nitrophilous. Consequently, reductions of soil nitrogen via carbon amendments have been conducted by many researchers in a variety of ecosystems in order to disproportionately lower invasive species abundance, but with mixed success. Recent studies suggest that resource-use traits may predict the efficacy of such resource manipulations; however, this theory remains largely untested. We report findings from a carbon amendment experiment that utilized two levels of sucrose additions that were aimed at achieving soil carbon to nitrogen ratios of 50:1 and 100:1 in labile sources. Carbon amendments were applied once each year, for three years, corresponding with the first large precipitation event of each wet season. Plant functional traits measured on the three invasive and 11 native herbaceous species that were most common at the study site showed that exotic and native species did not differ in traits associated with nitrogen use. In fact, plant abundance measures such as density, cover, and biomass showed that carbon amendments were capable of decreasing both native and invasive species. We found that early-germinating species were the most impacted by decreased soil nitrogen resulting from amendments. Because invasive annuals typically germinate earlier and exhibit a rapid phenology compared to most natives, these species are expected to be more competitive than native annuals yet more susceptible to early-season carbon amendments. However, desert annual communities can exhibit high interannual variability in species composition and abundance. Therefore, the relative abundance of native and invasive species at the time of application is

  1. Plant and soil community assembly in secondary succession on ex-arable land. Fundamental and applied approaches

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kardol, P.

    2007-01-01

    Agricultural land is converted into semi-natural ecosystems in order to counteract the current loss of species-rich grasslands and heathlands. However, efforts to restore such plant communities on former agricultural land have shown variable success. Secondary succession is the process of species re

  2. Review-An overview of Pistacia integerrima a medicinal plant species: Ethnobotany, biological activities and phytochemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bibi, Yamin; Zia, Muhammad; Qayyum, Abdul

    2015-05-01

    Pistacia integerrima with a common name crab's claw is an ethnobotanically important tree native to Asia. Traditionally plant parts particularly its galls have been utilized for treatment of cough, asthma, dysentery, liver disorders and for snake bite. Plant mainly contains alkaloids, flavonoids, tannins, saponins and sterols in different parts including leaf, stem, bark, galls and fruit. A number of terpenoids, sterols and phenolic compounds have been isolated from Pistacia integerrima extracts. Plant has many biological activities including anti-microbial, antioxidant, analgesic, cytotoxicity and phytotoxicity due to its chemical constituents. This review covers its traditional ethnomedicinal uses along with progresses in biological and phytochemical evaluation of this medicinally important plant species and aims to serve as foundation for further exploration and utilization.

  3. Plant Molecular Biology 2008 Gordon Research Conference - July 13-18, 2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Richard M. Amasino

    2009-08-28

    The Plant Molecular Biology Conference has traditionally covered a breadth of exciting topics and the 2008 conference will continue in that tradition. There will be sessions on metabolism; new methods to study genomes, proteomes and metabolomes; plant-microbe interactions; plant hormones; epigenetics. A new topic for the conference this year will be bioenergy. Thus this conference will bring together a range of disciplines to foster the exchange ideas and to permit the participants to learn of the latest developments and ideas in diverse areas of plant biology. The conference provides an excellent opportunity for individuals to discuss their research because additional speakers in each session will be selected from submitted abstracts. There will also be a poster session each day for a two-hour period prior to dinner.

  4. Predicting Student Success in a Major's Introductory Biology Course via Logistic Regression Analysis of Scientific Reasoning Ability and Mathematics Scores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, E. David; Bowling, Bethany V.; Markle, Ross E.

    2017-02-01

    Studies over the last 30 years have considered various factors related to student success in introductory biology courses. While much of the available literature suggests that the best predictors of success in a college course are prior college grade point average (GPA) and class attendance, faculty often require a valuable predictor of success in those courses wherein the majority of students are in the first semester and have no previous record of college GPA or attendance. In this study, we evaluated the efficacy of the ACT Mathematics subject exam and Lawson's Classroom Test of Scientific Reasoning in predicting success in a major's introductory biology course. A logistic regression was utilized to determine the effectiveness of a combination of scientific reasoning (SR) scores and ACT math (ACT-M) scores to predict student success. In summary, we found that the model—with both SR and ACT-M as significant predictors—could be an effective predictor of student success and thus could potentially be useful in practical decision making for the course, such as directing students to support services at an early point in the semester.

  5. Impact of biological soil crusts and desert plants on soil microfaunal community composition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darby, B.J.; Neher, D.A.; Belnap, J.

    2010-01-01

    Carbon and nitrogen are supplied by a variety of sources in the desert food web; both vascular and non-vascular plants and cyanobacteria supply carbon, and cyanobacteria and plant-associated rhizosphere bacteria are sources of biological nitrogen fixation. The objective of this study was to compare the relative influence of vascular plants and biological soil crusts on desert soil nematode and protozoan abundance and community composition. In the first experiment, biological soil crusts were removed by physical trampling. Treatments with crust removed had fewer nematodes and a greater relative ratio of bacterivores to microphytophages than treatments with intact crust. However, protozoa composition was similar with or without the presence of crusts. In a second experiment, nematode community composition was characterized along a spatial gradient away from stems of grasses or shrubs. Although nematodes generally occurred in increasing abundance nearer to plant stems, some genera (such as the enrichment-type Panagrolaimus) increased disproportionately more than others (such as the stress-tolerant Acromoldavicus). We propose that the impact of biological soil crusts and desert plants on soil microfauna, as reflected in the community composition of microbivorous nematodes, is a combination of carbon input, microclimate amelioration, and altered soil hydrology. ?? Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2009.

  6. From Charles Darwin's botanical country-house studies to modern plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutschera, U; Briggs, W R

    2009-11-01

    As a student of theology at Cambridge University, Charles Darwin (1809-1882) attended the lectures of the botanist John S. Henslow (1796-1861). This instruction provided the basis for his life-long interest in plants as well as the species question. This was a major reason why in his book On the Origin of Species, which was published 150 years ago, Darwin explained his metaphorical phrase 'struggle for life' with respect to animals and plants. In this article, we review Darwin's botanical work with reference to the following topics: the struggle for existence in the vegetable kingdom with respect to the phytochrome-mediated shade avoidance response; the biology of flowers and Darwin's plant-insect co-evolution hypothesis; climbing plants and the discovery of action potentials; the power of movement in plants and Darwin's conflict with the German plant physiologist Julius Sachs; and light perception by growing grass coleoptiles with reference to the phototropins. Finally, we describe the establishment of the scientific discipline of Plant Biology that took place in the USA 80 years ago, and define this area of research with respect to Darwin's work on botany and the physiology of higher plants.

  7. Costs and benefits of biological control of invasive alien plants in South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Van Wilgen, BW

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available , including Azolla filiculoides Lam. (Azollaceae), Eichhornia crassipes (C.Mart.) Solms (Pontederiaceae) and Salvinia molesta D.S. Mitch. (Salviniaceae), invade dams, reservoirs and freshwater ecosystems, where they impact nega- tively on water quality...- cessful biological control of Azolla filiculoides in South Africa. Biological Control 28: 25?32. MGOBOZI, M.P., SOMERS, M.J. & DIPPENAAR- SCHOEMAN, A.S. 2008. Spider responses to alien plant invasion: the effect of short- and long-term Chromolaena...

  8. Multimodal Molecular Mass Spectrometry Imaging : Development and Applications in Plant Biology and Forensic Toxicology

    OpenAIRE

    Porta, Tiffany

    2013-01-01

    This thesis focuses on the development of new analytical platforms for molecular mass spectrometry imaging and their applications in plant biology and forensic toxicology. So far, in drug metabolism or forensic toxicology, liquid chromatography with mass spectrometric detection is the technique of choice for analyzing drugs and metabolites in complex biological samples. LC-MS remains however challenging, because the development of appropriate sample preparation requires complex and time-consu...

  9. Application of X-ray fluorescence analytical techniques in phytoremediation and plant biology studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nečemer, Marijan; Kump, Peter; Ščančar, Janez; Jaćimović, Radojko; Simčič, Jurij; Pelicon, Primož; Budnar, Miloš; Jeran, Zvonka; Pongrac, Paula; Regvar, Marjana; Vogel-Mikuš, Katarina

    2008-11-01

    Phytoremediation is an emerging technology that employs the use of higher plants for the clean-up of contaminated environments. Progress in the field is however handicapped by limited knowledge of the biological processes involved in plant metal uptake, translocation, tolerance and plant-microbe-soil interactions; therefore a better understanding of the basic biological mechanisms involved in plant/microbe/soil/contaminant interactions would allow further optimization of phytoremediation technologies. In view of the needs of global environmental protection, it is important that in phytoremediation and plant biology studies the analytical procedures for elemental determination in plant tissues and soil should be fast and cheap, with simple sample preparation, and of adequate accuracy and reproducibility. The aim of this study was therefore to present the main characteristics, sample preparation protocols and applications of X-ray fluorescence-based analytical techniques (energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence spectrometry—EDXRF, total reflection X-ray fluorescence spectrometry—TXRF and micro-proton induced X-ray emission—micro-PIXE). Element concentrations in plant leaves from metal polluted and non-polluted sites, as well as standard reference materials, were analyzed by the mentioned techniques, and additionally by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) and atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS). The results were compared and critically evaluated in order to assess the performance and capability of X-ray fluorescence-based techniques in phytoremediation and plant biology studies. It is the EDXRF, which is recommended as suitable to be used in the analyses of a large number of samples, because it is multi-elemental, requires only simple preparation of sample material, and it is analytically comparable to the most frequently used instrumental chemical techniques. The TXRF is compatible to FAAS in sample preparation, but relative to AAS it is fast

  10. LEGO® bricks as building blocks for centimeter-scale biological environments: the case of plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kara R Lind

    Full Text Available LEGO bricks are commercially available interlocking pieces of plastic that are conventionally used as toys. We describe their use to build engineered environments for cm-scale biological systems, in particular plant roots. Specifically, we take advantage of the unique modularity of these building blocks to create inexpensive, transparent, reconfigurable, and highly scalable environments for plant growth in which structural obstacles and chemical gradients can be precisely engineered to mimic soil.

  11. LEGO® bricks as building blocks for centimeter-scale biological environments: the case of plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lind, Kara R; Sizmur, Tom; Benomar, Saida; Miller, Anthony; Cademartiri, Ludovico

    2014-01-01

    LEGO bricks are commercially available interlocking pieces of plastic that are conventionally used as toys. We describe their use to build engineered environments for cm-scale biological systems, in particular plant roots. Specifically, we take advantage of the unique modularity of these building blocks to create inexpensive, transparent, reconfigurable, and highly scalable environments for plant growth in which structural obstacles and chemical gradients can be precisely engineered to mimic soil.

  12. Herbivore-induced plant volatiles to enhance biological control in agriculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peñaflor, M F G V; Bento, J M S

    2013-08-01

    Plants under herbivore attack synthetize defensive organic compounds that directly or indirectly affect herbivore performance and mediate other interactions with the community. The so-called herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) consist of odors released by attacked plants that serve as important cues for parasitoids and predators to locate their host/prey. The understanding that has been gained on the ecological role and mechanisms of HIPV emission opens up paths for developing novel strategies integrated with biological control programs with the aim of enhancing the efficacy of natural enemies in suppressing pest populations in crops. Tactics using synthetic HIPVs or chemically/genetically manipulating plant defenses have been suggested in order to recruit natural enemies to plantations or help guiding them to their host more quickly, working as a "synergistic" agent of biological control. This review discusses strategies using HIPVs to enhance biological control that have been proposed in the literature and were categorized here as: (a) exogenous application of elicitors on plants, (b) use of plant varieties that emit attractive HIPVs to natural enemies, (c) release of synthetic HIPVs, and (d) genetic manipulation targeting genes that optimize HIPV emission. We discuss the feasibility, benefits, and downsides of each strategy by considering not only field studies but also comprehensive laboratory assays that present an applied approach for HIPVs or show the potential of employing them in the field.

  13. The role of habitat factors in successful invasion of alien plant Acer negundo in riparian zones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sikorski, Piotr; Sikorska, Daria

    2016-04-01

    Ash-leaved maple (Acer negundo) is one of the most invasive species occurring in riparian zones. The invasion is especially effective in disturbed areas, as the plant favours anthropogenic sites. The plant was also observed to be able to penetrate into sandy bars, also those separated from the land, inaccessible to people. It's removal is time-consuming and laborious, often involves damage done to sensitive vegetation and the results are doubtful, as the plant quickly regenerates. The invasion patterns and establishment of ash-leaved maple in natural ecosystems are poorly investigated. The aim of this study was to test how habitat factors such as: light availability, soil characteristics and competition contribute to ash-leaved maple effective colonization of natural sand bars free from anthropogenic pressure. In 2014 sand bars located in Vistula River Valley in Warsaw were inventoried and classified basing on their development stage as 1 - initial, 2 - unstable, 3 - stable. Apart from the occurrence of the invasive ash-leaved maple the plants competing with it were recognized and the percentage of the shoots of shrubs and herbaceous plants was estimated. PAR was measured at ground level and 1 meter above ground, the thickness of organic layer formed on the top of the sand was also measured as the indicator of sand bar development stage. The maple's survival in extremely difficult conditions resembles the strategy of willows and poplars naturally occurring in the riparian zones, which are well adapted to this environment. The success of invasion strongly depends on the plants establishment during sand bars initial stage of development. The seedlings growth correlates with the age of the sand bar (r1=0,41, r2=0,42 i r3=0,57). The colonization lasts for 4-6 years and the individuals start to cluster in bigger parches. After that period the maple turns into the phase of competition for space. Habitat factors such as shading (r2=0,41 i r3=0,51) and organic layer

  14. Biological Effects of Potato Plants Transformation with Glucose Oxidase Gene and their Resistance to Hyperthermia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O.I. Grabelnych

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available It is known that regulation of plant tolerance to adverse environmental factors is connected with short term increase of the concentration of endogenous reactive oxygen species (ROS, which are signalling molecules for the induction of protective mechanisms. Introduction and expression of heterologous gox gene, which encodes glucose oxidase enzyme in plant genome, induce constantly higher content of hydrogen peroxide in plant tissues. It is not known how the introduction of native or modified gox gene affects the plant resistance to high-temperature stress, one of the most commonly used model for the study of stress response and thermal tolerance. In this study, we investigated biological effects of transformation and evaluated the resistance to temperature stress of potato plants with altered levels of glucose oxidase expression. Transformation of potato plants by gox gene led to the more early coming out from tuber dormancy of transformed plants and slower growth rate. Transformants containing the glucose oxidase gene were more sensitive to lethal thermal shock (50 °C, 90 min than the transformant with the empty vector (pBI or untransformed plants (CK. Pre-heating of plants at 37 °C significantly weakened the damaging effect of lethal thermal shock. This attenuation was more significant in the non-transformed plants.

  15. Molecular biology of Lea genes of higher plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1991-07-01

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

  16. INFLUENCE OF BIOLOGICAL AND THERMAL TRANSFORMED SEWAGE SLUDGE APPLICATION ON MANGANESE CONTENT IN PLANTS AND SOIL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Małgorzata Koncewicz-Baran

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available A great variety of sewage sludge treatment methods, due to the agent (chemical, biological, thermal leads to the formation of varying ‘products’ properties, including the content of heavy metals forms. The aim of the study was to determine the effects of biologically and thermally transformed sewage sludge on the manganese content in plants and form of this element in the soil. The study was based on a two-year pot experiment. In this study was used stabilized sewage sludge collected from Wastewater Treatment Plant Krakow – ”Płaszów” and its mixtures with wheat straw in the gravimetric ratio 1:1 in conversion to material dry matter, transformed biologically (composting by 117 days in a bioreactor and thermally (in the furnace chamber with no air access by the following procedure exposed to temperatures of 130 °C for 40 min → 200 °C for 30 min. In both years of the study biologically and thermally transformed mixtures of sewage sludge with wheat straw demonstrated similar impact on the amount of biomass plants to the pig manure. Bigger amounts of manganese were assessed in oat biomass than in spring rape biomass. The applied sewage sludge and its biologically and thermally converted mixtures did not significantly affect manganese content in plant biomass in comparison with the farmyard manure. The applied fertilization did not modify the values of translocation and bioaccumulation ratios of manganese in the above-ground parts and roots of spring rape and oat. No increase in the content of the available to plants forms of manganese in the soil after applying biologically and thermally transformed sewage sludge mixtures with straw was detected. In the second year, lower contents of these manganese forms were noted in the soil of all objects compared with the first year of the experiment.

  17. Illuminating plant biology: using fluorescent proteins for high-throughput analysis of protein localization and function in plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeBlasio, Stacy L; Sylvester, Anne W; Jackson, David

    2010-03-01

    First discovered in jellyfish, fluorescent proteins (FPs) have been successfully optimized for use as effective biomarkers within living plant cells. When exposed to light, FPs fused to a protein or regulatory element will fluoresce, and non-invasively mark expression and protein localization, which allows for the in vivo monitoring of diverse cellular processes. In this review, we discuss how FP technology has evolved from small-scale analysis of individual genes to more high-throughput techniques for global expression and functional profiling in plants.

  18. The path to next generation biofuels: successes and challenges in the era of synthetic biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Volatility of oil prices along with major concerns about climate change, oil supply security and depleting reserves have sparked renewed interest in the production of fuels from renewable resources. Recent advances in synthetic biology provide new tools for metabolic engineers to direct their strategies and construct optimal biocatalysts for the sustainable production of biofuels. Metabolic engineering and synthetic biology efforts entailing the engineering of native and de novo pathways for conversion of biomass constituents to short-chain alcohols and advanced biofuels are herewith reviewed. In the foreseeable future, formal integration of functional genomics and systems biology with synthetic biology and metabolic engineering will undoubtedly support the discovery, characterization, and engineering of new metabolic routes and more efficient microbial systems for the production of biofuels. PMID:20089184

  19. Biological indices for classification of water quality around Mae Moh power plant, Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pongsarun Junshum and Siripen Traichaiyaporn

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available The algal communities and water quality were monitored at eight sampling sites around Mae Moh power plant during January-December 2003. Three biological indices, viz. algal genus pollution index, saprobic index, and Shannon-Weaver index, were adopted to classify the water quality around the power plant in comparison with the measured physico-chemical water quality. The result shows that the Shannon-Weaver diversity index appears to be much more applicable and interpretable for the classification of water quality around the Mae Moh power plant than the algal genus pollution index and the saprobic index.

  20. An investigation of the relationship between having recent knowledge in basic biology and student success in Anatomy and Physiology I

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Edward T.

    Allied Health Programs generally require that students complete coursework in Human Anatomy and Physiology I and II as part of their Pre-Allied Health curriculum. Human Anatomy and Physiology I generally has as a prerequisite some coursework in basic biology. Basic biology as a prerequisite should provide students with the foundation of knowledge in the basic biological principles and processes that will prepare them for the material presented in a Human Anatomy and Physiology I course and the Allied Health Program. The principle question that prompted this study was, Do students need coursework in basic biology to be successful in Anatomy and Physiology I? The purpose of this study was to determine if there was a difference in the exam average obtained in Biology 202, Human Anatomy and Physiology I, for those students who have had, within the previous three years, a foundation course in basic biology as compared to those students who have not, within the previous three years, had a foundation course in basic biology. The current study analyzed data obtained on 642 students who were enrolled in Biology 202, Anatomy and Physiology I, during the Fall semester of 2000 to the Spring semester of 2003 at Wor-Wic Community College. Statistical techniques including an ANOVA, Pearson Product Moment Correlation, and a Multiple Regression Analysis were conducted to reveal any relationships in the data. The dependent variable was the exam average obtained in the independent variables included the time period since the student had taken a basic biology course, sex, age, and college GPA. The results of the ANOVA indicated that there was no relationship between the exam average between current and non-current students, where alpha = 0.05 and p = 0.783. There was statistically significance for GPA, where p = 0 .000. There was also statistically significant interactions between last biology course and GPA, p = 0.05, last biology course, sex, and GPA, p = 0.002. The Pearson Product

  1. Evidence for rapid evolutionary change in an invasive plant in response to biological control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stastny, M; Sargent, R D

    2017-05-01

    We present evidence that populations of an invasive plant species that have become re-associated with a specialist herbivore in the exotic range through biological control have rapidly evolved increased antiherbivore defences compared to populations not exposed to biocontrol. We grew half-sib families of the invasive plant Lythrum salicaria sourced from 17 populations near Ottawa, Canada, that differed in their history of exposure to a biocontrol agent, the specialist beetle Neogalerucella calmariensis. In a glasshouse experiment, we manipulated larval and adult herbivory to examine whether a population's history of biocontrol influenced plant defence and growth. Plants sourced from populations with a history of biocontrol suffered lower defoliation than naïve, previously unexposed populations, strongly suggesting they had evolved higher resistance. Plants from biocontrol-exposed populations were also larger and produced more branches in response to herbivory, regrew faster even in the absence of herbivory and were better at compensating for the impacts of herbivory on growth (i.e. they exhibited increased tolerance). Furthermore, resistance and tolerance were positively correlated among genotypes with a history of biocontrol but not among naïve genotypes. Our findings suggest that biocontrol can rapidly select for increased defences in an invasive plant and may favour a mixed defence strategy of resistance and tolerance without an obvious cost to plant vigour. Although rarely studied, such evolutionary responses in the target species have important implications for the long-term efficacy of biocontrol programmes. © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  2. Aromatic Medicinal Plants of the Lamiaceae Family from Uzbekistan: Ethnopharmacology, Essential Oils Composition, and Biological Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nilufar Z. Mamadalieva

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Plants of the Lamiaceae family are important ornamental, medicinal, and aromatic plants, many of which produce essential oils that are used in traditional and modern medicine, and in the food, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical industry. Various species of the genera Hyssopus, Leonurus, Mentha, Nepeta, Origanum, Perovskia, Phlomis, Salvia, Scutellaria, and Ziziphora are widespread throughout the world, are the most popular plants in Uzbek traditional remedies, and are often used for the treatment of wounds, gastritis, infections, dermatitis, bronchitis, and inflammation. Extensive studies of the chemical components of these plants have led to the identification of many compounds, as well as essentials oils, with medicinal and other commercial values. The purpose of this review is to provide a critical overview of the literature surrounding the traditional uses, ethnopharmacology, biological activities, and essential oils composition of aromatic plants of the family Lamiaceae, from the Uzbek flora.

  3. Benchmarking biological nutrient removal in wastewater treatment plants: influence of mathematical model assumptions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Flores-Alsina, Xavier; Gernaey, Krist V.; Jeppsson, Ulf

    2012-01-01

    This paper examines the effect of different model assumptions when describing biological nutrient removal (BNR) by the activated sludge models (ASM) 1, 2d & 3. The performance of a nitrogen removal (WWTP1) and a combined nitrogen and phosphorus removal (WWTP2) benchmark wastewater treatment plant...

  4. Recent developments in systems biology and metabolic engineering of plant microbe interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vishal Kumar

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Microorganisms play a crucial role in the sustainability of the various ecosystems. The characterization of various interactions between microorganisms and other biotic factors is a necessary footstep to understand the association and functions of microbial communities. Among the different microbial interactions in an ecosystem, plant-microbe interaction plays an important role to balance the ecosystem. The present review explores plant microbe interactions using gene editing and system biology tools towards the comprehension in improvement of plant traits. Further, system biology tools like FBA, OptKnock and constrain based modeling helps in understanding such interactions as a whole. In addition, various gene editing tools have been summarized and a strategy has been hypothesized for the development of disease free plants. Furthermore, we have tried to summarize the predictions through data retrieved from various types of sources such as high throughput sequencing data (e.g. single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP detection, RNA-seq, proteomics and metabolic models have been reconstructed from such sequences for species communities. It is well known fact that systems biology approaches and modeling of biological networks will enable us to learn the insight of such network and will also help further in understanding these interactions.

  5. Recent Developments in Systems Biology and Metabolic Engineering of Plant-Microbe Interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Vishal; Baweja, Mehak; Singh, Puneet K; Shukla, Pratyoosh

    2016-01-01

    Microorganisms play a crucial role in the sustainability of the various ecosystems. The characterization of various interactions between microorganisms and other biotic factors is a necessary footstep to understand the association and functions of microbial communities. Among the different microbial interactions in an ecosystem, plant-microbe interaction plays an important role to balance the ecosystem. The present review explores plant-microbe interactions using gene editing and system biology tools toward the comprehension in improvement of plant traits. Further, system biology tools like FBA (flux balance analysis), OptKnock, and constraint-based modeling helps in understanding such interactions as a whole. In addition, various gene editing tools have been summarized and a strategy has been hypothesized for the development of disease free plants. Furthermore, we have tried to summarize the predictions through data retrieved from various types of sources such as high throughput sequencing data (e.g., single nucleotide polymorphism detection, RNA-seq, proteomics) and metabolic models have been reconstructed from such sequences for species communities. It is well known fact that systems biology approaches and modeling of biological networks will enable us to learn the insight of such network and will also help further in understanding these interactions.

  6. An Evaluation of Two Hands-On Lab Styles for Plant Biodiversity in Undergraduate Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basey, John M.; Maines, Anastasia P.; Francis, Clinton D.; Melbourne, Brett

    2014-01-01

    We compared learning cycle and expository formats for teaching about plant biodiversity in an inquiry-oriented university biology lab class (n = 465). Both formats had preparatory lab activities, a hands-on lab, and a postlab with reflection and argumentation. Learning was assessed with a lab report, a practical quiz in lab, and a multiple-choice…

  7. Costs and benefits of biological control of invasive alien plants: case studies from South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Van Wilgen, BW

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available . In many cases, plants are brought under complete control. In this paper, we describe an attempt to estimate the costs and benefits of the biological control of 6 weed species (Opuntia, aurantiaca, Sesbania punicea, Lantana camara, Acacia longifolia, A...

  8. Introduction to the Special Issue: Beyond traits: integrating behaviour into plant ecology and biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cahill, James F

    2015-10-26

    The way that plants are conceptualized in the context of ecological understanding is changing. In one direction, a reductionist school is pulling plants apart into a list of measured 'traits', from which ecological function and outcomes of species interactions may be inferred. This special issue offers an alternative, and more holistic, view: that the ecological functions performed by a plant will be a consequence not only of their complement of traits but also of the ways in which their component parts are used in response to environmental and social conditions. This is the realm of behavioural ecology, a field that has greatly advanced our understanding of animal biology, ecology and evolution. Included in this special issue are 10 articles focussing not on the tried and true metaphor that plant growth is similar to animal movement, but instead on how application of principles from animal behaviour can improve our ability to understand plant biology and ecology. The goals are not to draw false parallels, nor to anthropomorphize plant biology, but instead to demonstrate how existing and robust theory based on fundamental principles can provide novel understanding for plants. Key to this approach is the recognition that behaviour and intelligence are not the same. Many organisms display complex behaviours despite a lack of cognition (as it is traditionally understood) or any hint of a nervous system. The applicability of behavioural concepts to plants is further enhanced with the realization that all organisms face the same harsh forces of natural selection in the context of finding resources, mates and coping with neighbours. As these ecological realities are often highly variable in space and time, it is not surprising that all organisms-even plants-exhibit complex behaviours to handle this variability. The articles included here address diverse topics in behavioural ecology, as applied to plants: general conceptual understanding, plant nutrient foraging, root

  9. Managing heavy metal toxicity stress in plants: biological and biotechnological tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ovečka, M; Takáč, T

    2014-01-01

    The maintenance of ion homeostasis in plant cells is a fundamental physiological requirement for sustainable plant growth, development and production. Plants exposed to high concentrations of heavy metals must respond in order to avoid the deleterious effects of heavy metal toxicity at the structural, physiological and molecular levels. Plant strategies for coping with heavy metal toxicity are genotype-specific and, at least to some extent, modulated by environmental conditions. There is considerable interest in the mechanisms underpinning plant metal tolerance, a complex process that enables plants to survive metal ion stress and adapt to maintain growth and development without exhibiting symptoms of toxicity. This review briefly summarizes some recent cell biological, molecular and proteomic findings concerning the responses of plant roots to heavy metal ions in the rhizosphere, metal ion-induced reactions at the cell wall-plasma membrane interface, and various aspects of heavy metal ion uptake and transport in plants via membrane transporters. The molecular and genetic approaches that are discussed are analyzed in the context of their potential practical applications in biotechnological approaches for engineering increased heavy metal tolerance in crops and other useful plants.

  10. Pollination of a native plant changes with distance and density of invasive plants in a simulated biological invasion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruckman, Daniela; Campbell, Diane R

    2016-08-01

    Effects of an exotic plant on pollination may change as the invasive increases in density. Quantity of pollinator visits to a native may increase, decrease, or change nonlinearly, while visit quality is likely to decrease with greater interspecific pollen movement. How visit quantity and quality contribute to the effect on reproductive success at each invasion stage has not been measured. We simulated four stages of invasion by Brassica nigra by manipulating the neighborhood of potted plants of the native Phacelia parryi in a field experiment. Stages were far from the invasion, near the invasion, intermixed with the invasive at low density, and intermixed at high density. We measured pollinator visitation, conspecific and invasive pollen deposition, and seed set for P. parryi at each stage. Native individuals near invasive plants and within areas of low invasive density showed greatest seed production, as expected from concurrent changes in conspecific and invasive pollen deposition. Those plants experienced facilitation of visits and received more conspecific pollen relative to plants farther from invasives. Native individuals within high invasive density also received frequent visits by many pollinators (although not honeybees), but the larger receipt of invasive pollen predicted interference with pollen tubes that matched patterns in seed set. Pollinator visitation was highest when exotic plants were nearby. Detrimental effects of heterospecific pollen deposition were highest at high exotic density. Our study quantified how reproduction benefits from near proximity to a showy invasive, but is still vulnerable when the invasive reaches high density. © 2016 Botanical Society of America.

  11. 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.

  12. Different sets of reliability data and success criteria in a probabilistic safety assessment for a plant producing nitroglycol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hauptmanns, Ulrich

    2009-03-15

    The lack of plant-specific reliability data for probabilistic safety assessments usually makes it necessary to use generic reliability data. Justifiably different assessments of plant behaviour (success criteria) lead to different models of plant systems. Both affect the numerical results of a probabilistic safety assessment. It is shown how these results change, if different sets of reliability data and different choices of success criteria for the safety system are employed. Differences in results may influence decisions taken on their basis and become especially important if compliance with a safety goal has to be proved, e.g. a safety integrity level. For the purpose of demonstration an accident sequence from a probabilistic safety assessment of a plant producing nitroglycol is used. The analysis relies on plant-specific reliability data so that it provides a good yardstick for comparing it with results obtained using generic data. The superiority of plant-specific data, which should of course be acquired, cannot be doubted. Nevertheless, plant safety can be improved even if generic data are used. However, the assignment to a safety integrity level may be affected by differences in both data and success criteria.

  13. Enhanced biological phosphorus removal in the wastewater treatment plant of Bunnik

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vries, H.P. de; Rensink, J.H.

    1989-02-01

    At several sewage treatment plants in the Netherlands there has been continuously found a remarkable high phosphorus removal rate, without using chemical additions. In Bunnik this is up to 90%. In the effluent we will mostly find less than 1 mg P/l. At the Bunnik plant we deal with biological excess phosphorus removal. Biological phosphorus removal is based on the luxury uptake of phosphorus by some bacteria. On certain circumstances micro-organisms of the genius Acinetobacter stored excess amounts of phosphates in their cells. In 1984 a project started, financed by the institute for inland waters and wastewater treatment (DBW/RIZA). The purpose of this research project was to find factors which were, responsible for the remarkable enhanced phosphorus removal in the Bunnik plant.

  14. Host Plants Affect the Foraging Success of Two Parasitoids that Attack Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Yi; Wratten, Steve; Sandhu, Harpinder; Keller, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The light brown apple moth, Epiphyas postvittana is a key pest of wine grapes in Australia. Two parasitoids, Dolichogenidea tasmanica and Therophilus unimaculatus, attack the larval stage of this pest. D. tasmanica is dominant in vineyards, whereas T. unimaculatus is mainly active in native vegetation. We sought to understand why they differ in their use of habitats. Plants are a major component of habitats of parasitoids, and herbivore-infested plants influence parasitoid foraging efficiency by their architecture and emission of volatile chemicals. We investigated how different plant species infested by E. postvittana could affect the foraging success of the two parasitoid species in both laboratory and field experiments. Four common host-plant species were selected for this study. In paired-choice experiments to determine the innate foraging preferences for plants, both parasitoid species showed differences in innate search preferences among plant species. The plant preference of D. tasmanica was altered by oviposition experience with hosts that were feeding on other plant species. In a behavioral assay, the two parasitoid species allocated their times engaged in various types of behavior differently when foraging on different plant species. For both parasitoids, parasitism on Hardenbergia violacea was the highest of the four plant species. Significantly more larvae dropped from Myoporum insulare when attacked than from the other three host-plant species, which indicates that parasitism is also affected by interactions between plants and host insects. In vineyards, parasitism by D. tasmanica was significantly lower on M. insulare than on the other three host-plant species, but the parasitism rates were similar among the other three plant species. Our results indicate that plants play a role in the habitat preferences of these two parasitoid species by influencing their foraging behavior, and are likely to contribute to their distributions among habitats.

  15. Guidelines for Developing Successful Short Advanced Courses in Systems Medicine and Systems Biology

    KAUST Repository

    Gomez-Cabrero, David

    2017-08-23

    Summary Systems medicine and systems biology have inherent educational challenges. These have largely been addressed either by providing new masters programs or by redesigning undergraduate programs. In contrast, short courses can respond to a different need: they can provide condensed updates for professionals across academia, the clinic, and industry. These courses have received less attention. Here, we share our experiences in developing and providing such courses to current and future leaders in systems biology and systems medicine. We present guidelines for how to reproduce our courses, and we offer suggestions for how to select students who will nurture an interdisciplinary learning environment and thrive there.

  16. Microgravity research in plant biological systems: Realizing the potential of molecular biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Norman G.; Ryan, Clarence A.

    1993-01-01

    The sole all-pervasive feature of the environment that has helped shape, through evolution, all life on Earth is gravity. The near weightlessness of the Space Station Freedom space environment allows gravitational effects to be essentially uncoupled, thus providing an unprecedented opportunity to manipulate, systematically dissect, study, and exploit the role of gravity in the growth and development of all life forms. New and exciting opportunities are now available to utilize molecular biological and biochemical approaches to study the effects of microgravity on living organisms. By careful experimentation, we can determine how gravity perception occurs, how the resulting signals are produced and transduced, and how or if tissue-specific differences in gene expression occur. Microgravity research can provide unique new approaches to further our basic understanding of development and metabolic processes of cells and organisms, and to further the application of this new knowledge for the betterment of humankind.

  17. EU-OPENSCREEN-chemical tools for the study of plant biology and resistance mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meiners, Torsten; Stechmann, Bahne; Frank, Ronald

    2014-10-01

    EU-OPENSCREEN is an academic research infrastructure initiative in Europe for enabling researchers in all life sciences to take advantage of chemical biology approaches to their projects. In a collaborative effort of national networks in 16 European countries, EU-OPENSCREEN will develop novel chemical compounds with external users to address questions in, among other fields, systems and network biology (directed and selective perturbation of signalling pathways), structural biology (compound-target interactions at atomic resolution), pharmacology (early drug discovery and toxicology) and plant biology (response of wild or crop plants to environmental and agricultural substances). EU-OPENSCREEN supports all stages of a tool development project, including assay adaptation, high-throughput screening and chemical optimisation of the 'hit' compounds. All tool compounds and data will be made available to the scientific community. EU-OPENSCREEN integrates high-capacity screening platforms throughout Europe, which share a rationally selected compound collection comprising up to 300,000 (commercial and proprietary compounds collected from European chemists). By testing systematically this chemical collection in hundreds of assays originating from very different biological themes, the screening process generates enormous amounts of information about the biological activities of the substances and thereby steadily enriches our understanding of how and where they act.

  18. Epigenetics and its Implications for Plant Biology. 1. The Epigenetic Network in Plants

    OpenAIRE

    GRANT-DOWNTON, R. T.; Dickinson, H. G.

    2005-01-01

    • Background Epigenetics has rapidly evolved in the past decade to form an exciting new branch of biology. In modern terms, ‘epigenetics’ studies molecular pathways regulating how the genes are packaged in the chromosome and expressed, with effects that are heritable between cell divisions and even across generations.

  19. A conceptual ecosystem model of microbial communities in enhanced biological phosphorus removal plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Per Halkjaer; Mielczarek, Artur Tomasz; Kragelund, Caroline; Nielsen, Jeppe Lund; Saunders, Aaron Marc; Kong, Yunhong; Hansen, Aviaja Anna; Vollertsen, Jes

    2010-09-01

    The microbial populations in 25 full-scale activated sludge wastewater treatment plants with enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR plants) have been intensively studied over several years. Most of the important bacterial groups involved in nitrification, denitrification, biological P removal, fermentation, and hydrolysis have been identified and quantified using quantitative culture-independent molecular methods. Surprisingly, a limited number of core species was present in all plants, constituting on average approx. 80% of the entire communities in the plants, showing that the microbial populations in EBPR plants are rather similar and not very diverse, as sometimes suggested. By focusing on these organisms it is possible to make a comprehensive ecosystem model, where many important aspects in relation to microbial ecosystems and wastewater treatment can be investigated. We have reviewed the current knowledge about these microorganisms with focus on key ecophysiological factors and combined this into a conceptual ecosystem model for EBPR plants. It includes the major pathways of carbon flow with specific organic substances, the dominant populations involved in the transformations, interspecies interactions, and the key factors controlling their presence and activity. We believe that the EBPR process is a perfect model system for studies of microbial ecology in water engineering systems and that this conceptual model can be used for proposing and testing theories based on microbial ecosystem theories, for the development of new and improved quantitative ecosystem models and is beneficial for future design and management of wastewater treatment systems. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Research and Teaching: From Gatekeeper to Gateway: Improving Student Success in an Introductory Biology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Amy N.; McNair, Delores E.; Lucas, Jonathan C.; Land, Kirkwood M.

    2017-01-01

    Introductory science, math, and engineering courses often have problems related to student engagement, achievement, and course completion. To begin examining these issues in greater depth, this pilot study compared student engagement, achievement, and course completion in a small and large section of an introductory biology class. Results based on…

  1. Soil microbial community structure and function responses to successive planting of Eucalyptus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Falin; Zheng, Hua; Zhang, Kai; Ouyang, Zhiyun; Li, Huailin; Wu, Bing; Shi, Qian

    2013-10-01

    Many studies have shown soil degradation after the conversion of native forests to exotic Eucalyptus plantations. However, few studies have investigated the long-term impacts of short-rotation forestry practices on soil microorganisms. The impacts of Eucalyptus successive rotations on soil microbial communities were evaluated by comparing phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) abundances, compositions, and enzyme activities of native Pinus massoniana plantations and adjacent 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th generation Eucalyptus plantations. The conversion from P. massoniana to Eucalyptus plantations significantly decreased soil microbial community size and enzyme activities, and increased microbial physiological stress. However, the PLFA abundances formed "u" shaped quadratic functions with Eucalyptus plantation age. Alternatively, physiological stress biomarkers, the ratios of monounsaturated to saturated fatty acid and Gram+ to Gram- bacteria, formed "n"' shaped quadratic functions, and the ratio of cy17:0 to 16:1omega7c decreased with plantation age. The activities of phenol oxidase, peroxidase, and acid phosphatase increased with Eucalyptus plantation age, while the cellobiohydrolase activity formed "u" shaped quadratic functions. Soil N:P, alkaline hydrolytic nitrogen, soil organic carbon, and understory cover largely explained the variation in PLFA profiles while soil N:P, alkaline hydrolytic nitrogen, and understory cover explained most of the variability in enzyme activity. In conclusion, soil microbial structure and function under Eucalyptus plantations were strongly impacted by plantation age. Most of the changes could be explained by altered soil resource availability and understory cover associated with successive planting of Eucalyptus. Our results highlight the importance of plantation age for assessing the impacts of plantation conversion as well as the importance of reducing disturbance for plantation management.

  2. Trends in biological activity research of wild-growing aromatic plants from Central Balkans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Džamić, A.M.

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Flowering plants consists of more than 300.000 species around the world, out of which a small percentage has been sufficiently investigated from phytochemical and biological activity aspects. Plant diversity of the Balkans is very rich, but still poorly investigated. The aim of this paper is survey of current status and trends in research of wild-growing aromatic plants from Central Balkans. Many aromatic plants are investigated from morphological, physiological, ecological, systematic and phytochemical aspects. However, traditionally used medicinal and aromatic plants can also be considered from applicative aspects, concerning their health effects, and from wide range of usage in cosmetics, and as food, agrochemical and pharmaceutical products. In order to achieve all planned objectives, following methodology has been applied: field research, taxonomic authentication and, comparative biologically assayed phytochemical investigations. The total herbal extracts, postdistillation waste (deodorized extracts, essential oils and individual compounds of some autochthonous plants have been considered as potential source of antibacterial, antifungal, anti-biofilm, antioxidant and cytotoxic agents. In this manuscript, composition of essential oils and extracts were evaluated in a number of species, from the Apiaceae, Lamiaceae, Rosaceae and Asteraceae families. Extracts which were rich in phenols mostly of flavonoids, often showed high antioxidant potential. Also, phenolic compounds identified in essential oils and extracts were mostly responsible for expected antimicrobial activity. Current worldwide demand is to reduce or, if possible, eliminate chemically synthesized food additives. Plant-produced compounds are becoming of interest as a source of more effective and safe substances than synthetically produced antimicrobial agents (as inhibitors, growth reducers or even inactivators that control growth of microorganisms. Many different pathogens have

  3. Characterization of the soil organic matter and plant tissues in an initial stage of the plant succession and soil development by means of curie-point pyrolysis coupled with GC-MS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahmonov, Oimahmad; Kowalski, Witold J.; Bednarek, Renata

    2010-12-01

    The composition of the soil organic matter in soil developing under the influence of vegetation during the primary succession in the poor sandy area was investigated. The Curie-point pyrolysis method coupled with gas chromatographic separation and mass spectrometric identification of pyrolysates was applied during the investigation. A comparison of occurrence and diversity in composition of organic compounds in plant tissues and humus horizon of soils under the communities of coniferous forest series in the initial stages and phases was carried out. A large diversity of organic compounds under Algae-Cyanophyta communities, biological soil crusts and Polytrichum piliferum was noticed. A clear differentiation in the composition of the soil organic matter at different phases of succession under predominating communities with cryptogamous and vascular plants was observed. The analysis of organic compounds in plant tissues was found to facilitate the determination of origin of various groups of organic compounds in the soil. The results obtained from the Curie point pyrograms in the humus horizon (A) under grasses ( Corynephorus canescens, Koeleria glauca) differed from the pyrolysates obtained under Algae-Cyanophyta communities. The polysaccharide derivates are more frequent in the pyrolysis products under algae, grasses ( Corynephorus canescens, Koeleria glauca) and mosses than under Pinus sylvestris. In the beginning of the terminal stage of succession, lignin, phenols and aliphatic substances, prevailed over the polysaccharide derivates in the humus horizon.

  4. Making educational reforms practical for teachers : using a modular, success-oriented approach to make a context-based educational reform practical for implementation in Dutch biology education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dam, Michiel

    2014-01-01

    For a successful implementation of an educational reform, teachers need to regard the proposal as being practical. I used a modular, success-oriented approach to make a context-based reform practical for implemtentation in Duthc biology education. educational reform, modular, teachers, biology, succ

  5. DIVERSITY OF PLANT COMMUNITIES IN SECONDARY SUCCESSION OF IMPERATA GRASSLANDS IN SAMBOJA LESTARI, EAST KALIMANTAN, INDONESIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ishak Yassir

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Regeneration of  Imperata grassland areas is becoming increasingly important, both to create new secondary forest and to recover the original biodiversity. The diversity of  plant communities in secondary succession of  Imperata grasslands was studied using 45 subplots of  9 linear transects (10 m x 100 m. Data was collected and all stems over 10 cm dbh were identified, the Importance Values Index (IVI for all trees were calculated, saplings and seedlings were counted  and analysed, and soil samples were taken and analysed. Results showed that  after more than 10 years of  regeneration, 65 families were encountered consisting of  164 species, which were dominated by Vernonia arborea Buch.-Ham, Vitex pinnata L., Macaranga gigantea (Reichb.f. & Zoll. Muell.Arg., Symplocos crassipes C.B. Clarke, Artocarpus odoratissimus Miq., and Bridelia glauca Blume. The effects of  regeneration, from Imperata grassland to secondary forest, on soil were the strongest in the A-horizon where an increase in carbon, N content, and pH were observed. Our result shows that Imperata grasslands appear to be permanent because of  frequent fires and human interferences and so far few efforts have been made to promote sustainable rehabilitation. If  protected from fire and other disturbances, such as shifting cultivation, Imperata grassland will grow and develop into secondary forest.

  6. Mapping the Metal Uptake in Plants from Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve - Oral Presentation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lo, Allison [SLAC National Accelerator Lab., Menlo Park, CA (United States)

    2015-08-24

    Serpentine soil originates in the Earth’s mantle and contains high concentrations of potentially toxic transition metals. Although serpentine soil limits plant growth, endemic and adapted plants at Jasper Ridge Biological Preserve, located behind SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, can tolerate these conditions. Serpentine soil and seeds belonging to native California and invasive plants were collected at Jasper Ridge. The seeds were grown hydroponically and on serpentine and potting soil to examine the uptake and distribution of ions in the roots and shoots using synchrotron micro-focused X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy. The results were used to determine differences between serpentinetolerant plants. Rye grown on potting soil was enriched in Ni, Fe, Mn, and Cr compared to purple needlegrass grown on serpentine soil. Serpentine vegetation equally suppressed the uptake of Mn, Ni, and Fe in the roots and shoots. The uptake of Ca and Mg affected the uptake of other elements such as K, S, and P.

  7. A new tool for plant cell biology: in vivo antibody uptake in plant protoplasts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brière, C; Barthou, H; Petitprez, M

    2004-07-01

    We report on the in vivo uptake of antibodies into plant protoplasts. When protoplasts of sunflower, Arabidopsis or tobacco were incubated in vivo with an antibody, this antibody was detected by immunofluorescence in the cytoplasm and/or the nucleus, depending on the location of the target protein. Furthermore, when protoplasts were cultured in the presence of antibodies, specific effects were observed. Incubation with antibodies raised against p34cdc2 led to a strong inhibition of the division rate, and a decrease in the average DNA content of protoplasts. With antibodies against HaWLIM1, a LIM domain protein of the CRP type, a negative effect on actin organisation was observed. We conclude that antibodies can penetrate plant protoplasts in vivo, and thus may be used as powerful tools for the study of protein function.

  8. Biological protection of plants in agricultular landscape--state of the art,problems and ways of their decision

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Sokolov M S; Kolombet L V

    2004-01-01

    @@ 1. Biological protection of plants: definition and objectives. Technologically, biological protection of plants (hereinafter bioprotection) is a high agricultural technology involving agricultural landscape approach and basee on an ecological imperative, namely "use living beings against living beings". In a wide sense, present-day bioprotection is a fundamental and applied field of knowledge providing harmless suppression of harmful agents during cultivation and storage of agricultural crops by use natural and (or) artificially constructed organisms (including genetically modified ones having pesticidal properties ) and products of their live cycle. The overall objective of bioprotection consists in producing harmless, profitable and high-quality vegetative raw material, food, fodder. At the same time, bioprotection agrotechnologies are important environment forming and environment maintaining factors, steady and positively influencing the health of both rural ethnos, and agrosphere as a whole. Realization of integrated bioprotection approaches should provide minimum destruction of beneficial and non-target organisms, excluding the succession of harmful species and appearance of species resistant to biocontrol agents.

  9. Plant species with extremely small populations (PSESP in China: A seed and spore biology perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ellie Merrett Wade

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Approximately one fifth of the world's plants are at risk of extinction. Of these, a significant number exist as populations of few individuals, with limited distribution ranges and under enormous pressure due to habitat destruction. In China, these most-at-risk species are described as ‘plant species with extremely small populations’ (PSESP. Implementing conservation action for such listed species is urgent. Storing seeds is one of the main means of ex situ conservation for flowering plants. Spore storage could provide a simple and economical method for fern ex situ conservation. Seed and spore germination in nature is a critical step in species regeneration and thus in situ conservation. But what is known about the seed and spore biology (storage and germination of at-risk species? We have used China's PSESP (the first group listing as a case study to understand the gaps in knowledge on propagule biology of threatened plant species. We found that whilst germination information is available for 28 species (23% of PSESP, storage characteristics are only known for 8% of PSESP (10 species. Moreover, we estimate that 60% of the listed species may require cryopreservation for long-term storage. We conclude that comparative biology studies are urgently needed on the world's most threatened taxa so that conservation action can progress beyond species listing.

  10. Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant biological monitoring and abatement program (BMAP) plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adams, S.M.; Brandt, C.C.; Cicerone, D.S. [and others

    1998-02-01

    The proposed Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) for East Fork Poplar Creek (EFPC) at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant, as described, will be conducted for the duration of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit issued for the Y-12 Plant on April 28, 1995, and which became effective July 1, 1995. The basic approach to biological monitoring used in this program was developed by the staff in the Environmental Sciences Division at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory at the request of Y-12 Plant personnel. The proposed BMAP plan is based on results of biological monitoring conducted since 1985. Details of the specific procedures used in the current routine monitoring program are provided, but experimental designs for future studies are described in less detail. The overall strategy used in developing this plan was, and continues to be, to use the results obtained from each task to define the scope of future monitoring efforts. Such efforts may require more intensive sampling than initially proposed in some areas or a reduction in sampling intensity in others. By using the results of previous monitoring efforts to define the current program and to guide them in the development of future studies, an effective integrated monitoring program has been developed to assess the impacts of the Y-12 Plant operation on the biota of EFPC and to document the ecological effects of remedial actions.

  11. Mechanical-biological treatment: performance and potentials. An LCA of 8 MBT plants including waste characterization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montejo, Cristina; Tonini, Davide; Márquez, María del Carmen; Astrup, Thomas Fruergaard

    2013-10-15

    In the endeavour of avoiding presence of biodegradable waste in landfills and increasing recycling, mechanical-biological treatment (MBT) plants have seen a significant increase in number and capacity in the last two decades. The aim of these plants is separating and stabilizing the quickly biodegradable fraction of the waste as well as recovering recyclables from mixed waste streams. In this study the environmental performance of eight MBT-based waste management scenarios in Spain was assessed by means of life cycle assessment. The focus was on the technical and environmental performance of the MBT plants. These widely differed in type of biological treatment and recovery efficiencies. The results indicated that the performance is strongly connected with energy and materials recovery efficiency. The recommendation for upgrading and/or commissioning of future plants is to optimize materials recovery through increased automation of the selection and to prioritize biogas-electricity production from the organic fraction over direct composting. The optimal strategy for refuse derived fuel (RDF) management depends upon the environmental compartment to be prioritized and the type of marginal electricity source in the system. It was estimated that, overall, up to ca. 180-190 kt CO2-eq. y(-1) may be saved by optimizing the MBT plants under assessment.

  12. Beyond the ecological: biological invasions alter natural selection on a native plant species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Jennifer A

    2008-04-01

    Biological invasions can have strong ecological effects on native communities by altering ecosystem functions, species interactions, and community composition. Even though these ecological effects frequently impact the population dynamics and fitness of native species, the evolutionary consequences of biological invasions have received relatively little attention. Here, I show that invasions impose novel selective pressures on a native plant species. By experimentally manipulating community composition, I found that the exotic plant Medicago polymorpha and the exotic herbivore Hypera brunneipennis alter the strength and, in some instances, the direction of natural selection on the competitive ability and anti-herbivore defenses of the native plant Lotus wrangelianus. Furthermore, the community composition of exotics influenced which traits were favored. For example, high densities of the exotic herbivore Hypera selected for increased resistance to herbivores in the native Lotus; however, when Medicago also was present, selection on this defense was eliminated. In contrast, selection on tolerance, another plant defense trait, was highest when both Hypera and Medicago were present at high densities. Thus, multiple exotic species may interact to influence the evolutionary trajectories of native plant populations, and patterns of selection may change as additional exotic species invade the community.

  13. C4 and CAM Plant Biology Symposium 2013 Website

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leakey, Andrew D. B. [Univ. of Illinois, Champaign, IL (United States)

    2013-08-09

    This project funded the C4 and CAM (crassulacean acid metabolism) Plant Biology 2013 symposium, held at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL, on August 6-9, 2013. The symposium brought together a diverse group of scientists to discuss the evolution, ecology, functional biology, genomics and biotechnological engineering of C4 and CAM plants. These two groups of plants possess evolutionary modifications to their photosynthetic machinery that improve their performance in hot and dry conditions. Maize and pineapple are classic examples of C4 and CAM plants, respectively. The meeting discussed how lessons learned from these groups of plants can be harnessed to improve crop production of biofuel feedstocks in an era of global climate change. The interdisciplinary nature of the meeting meant that the delegation members typically do not collectively attend any one scientific society meeting. As a result, the symposium was a unique opportunity for knowledge transfer, initiation of new collaborations, and recruitment and exposure of early career scientists.

  14. Anthropogenic climate change and allergen exposure: The role of plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziska, Lewis H; Beggs, Paul J

    2012-01-01

    Accumulation of anthropogenic gases, particularly CO(2), is likely to have 2 fundamental effects on plant biology. The first is an indirect effect through Earth's increasing average surface temperatures, with subsequent effects on other aspects of climate, such as rainfall and extreme weather events. The second is a direct effect caused by CO(2)-induced stimulation of photosynthesis and plant growth. Both effects are likely to alter a number of fundamental aspects of plant biology and human health, including aerobiology and allergic diseases, respectively. This review highlights the current and projected effect of increasing CO(2) and climate change in the context of plants and allergen exposure, emphasizing direct effects on plant physiologic parameters (eg, pollen production) and indirect effects (eg, fungal sporulation) related to diverse biotic and abiotic interactions. Overall, the review assumes that future global mitigation efforts will be limited and suggests a number of key research areas that will assist in adapting to the ongoing challenges to public health associated with increased allergen exposure.

  15. History on the biological nitrogen fixation research in graminaceous plants: special emphasis on the Brazilian experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldani, José I; Baldani, Vera L D

    2005-09-01

    This review covers the history on Biological Nitrogen Fixation (BNF) in Graminaceous plants grown in Brazil, and describes research progress made over the last 40 years, most of which was coordinated by Johanna Döbereiner. One notable accomplishment during this period was the discovery of several nitrogen-fixing bacteria such as the rhizospheric (Beijerinckia fluminensis and Azotobacter paspali), associative (Azospirillum lipoferum, A. brasilense, A. amazonense) and the endophytic (Herbaspirillum seropedicae, H. rubrisubalbicans, Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus, Burkholderia brasilensis and B. tropica). The role of these diazotrophs in association with grasses, mainly with cereal plants, has been studied and a lot of progress has been achieved in the ecological, physiological, biochemical, and genetic aspects. The mechanisms of colonization and infection of the plant tissues are better understood, and the BNF contribution to the soil/plant system has been determined. Inoculation studies with diazotrophs showed that endophytic bacteria have a much higher BNF contribution potential than associative diazotrophs. In addition, it was found that the plant genotype influences the plant/bacteria association. Recent data suggest that more studies should be conducted on the endophytic association to strengthen the BNF potential. The ongoing genome sequencing programs: RIOGENE (Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus) and GENOPAR (Herbaspirillum seropedicae) reflect the commitment to the BNF study in Brazil and should allow the country to continue in the forefront of research related to the BNF process in Graminaceous plants.

  16. Learning strategies, test anxiety and academic success of primary and high- school students at biology class

    OpenAIRE

    Stražar, Klavdija

    2016-01-01

    The extent of learning success of students in school depends upon many factors, among them are having a significant impact learning strategies and influence of test anxiety. Test anxiety refers to the anxiety that occurs in individuals in situations of assessment and evaluation in school. Anxiety in humans is expressed as a long-lasting feeling of anxiety, tension and discomfort that occurs without a specific reason. Persons who are experiencing feelings of anxiety find it difficult to face a...

  17. Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident: facts, environmental contamination, possible biological effects, and countermeasures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anzai, Kazunori; Ban, Nobuhiko; Ozawa, Toshihiko; Tokonami, Shinji

    2012-01-01

    On March 11, 2011, an earthquake led to major problems at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. A 14-m high tsunami triggered by the earthquake disabled all AC power to Units 1, 2, and 3 of the Power Plant, and carried off fuel tanks for emergency diesel generators. Despite many efforts, cooling systems did not work and hydrogen explosions damaged the facilities, releasing a large amount of radioactive material into the environment. In this review, we describe the environmental impact of the nuclear accident, and the fundamental biological effects, acute and late, of the radiation. Possible medical countermeasures to radiation exposure are also discussed.

  18. Application of vascular aquatic plants for pollution removal, energy and food production in a biological system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolverton, B. C.; Barlow, R. M.; Mcdonald, R. C.

    1975-01-01

    Vascular aquatic plants such as water hyacinths (Eichhornia crassipes) (Mart.) Solms and alligator weeds (Alternanthera philoxeroides) (Mart.) Griesb., when utilized in a controlled biological system (including a regular program of harvesting to achieve maximum growth and pollution removal efficiency), may represent a remarkably efficient and inexpensive filtration and disposal system for toxic materials and sewage released into waters near urban and industrial areas. The harvested and processed plant materials are sources of energy, fertilizer, animal feed, and human food. Such a system has industrial, municipal, and agricultural applications.

  19. Polyacetylenes from terrestrial plants and fungi: Recent phytochemical and biological advances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negri, Roberto

    2015-10-01

    Polyacetylenes are a class of polyketides related to fatty acids that occur in plants, fungi, marine organisms and animals. These compounds show a pleiotropic profile of bioactivity, that includes antitumor, antibacterial, antimicrobial or antifungal properties. Because of this, the literature on these compounds has grown exponentially, and this review aims at summarizing the inventory of polyacetylenes occurring in terrestrial eukaryotic organisms (plants and fungi) during the last 15 years, and at discussing progress in their bioactivities and in the identification of their biological targets.

  20. Secondary successions of biota in oil-polluted peat soil upon different biological remediation methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melekhina, E. N.; Markarova, M. Yu.; Shchemelinina, T. N.; Anchugova, E. M.; Kanev, V. A.

    2015-06-01

    The effects of different bioremediation methods on restoration of the oil-polluted peat soil (Histosol) in the northernmost taiga subzone of European Russia was studied. The population dynamics of microorganisms belonging to different trophic groups (hydrocarbon-oxidizing, ammonifying, nitrifying, and oligonitrophilic) were analyzed together with data on the soil enzyme (catalase and dehydrogenase) activities, population densities of soil microfauna groups, their structures, and states of phytocenoses during a sevenyear-long succession. The remediation with biopreparations Roder composed of oil-oxidizing microorganisms-Roder with Rhodococcus rubber and R. erythropolis and Universal with Rhodotorula glutinis and Rhodococcus sp.-was more efficient than the agrochemical and technical remediation. It was concluded that the biopreparations activate microbiological oil destruction, thereby accelerating restoration succession of phytocenosis and zoocenosis. The succession of dominant microfauna groups was observed: the dipteran larvae and Mesostigmata mites predominant at the early stages were replaced by collembolans at later stages. The pioneer oribatid mite species were Tectocepheus velatus, Oppiella nova, Liochthonius sellnicki, Oribatula tibialis, and Eupelops sp.

  1. Gene Selection Integrated with Biological Knowledge for Plant Stress Response Using Neighborhood System and Rough Set Theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meng, Jun; Zhang, Jing; Luan, Yushi

    2015-01-01

    Mining knowledge from gene expression data is a hot research topic and direction of bioinformatics. Gene selection and sample classification are significant research trends, due to the large amount of genes and small size of samples in gene expression data. Rough set theory has been successfully applied to gene selection, as it can select attributes without redundancy. To improve the interpretability of the selected genes, some researchers introduced biological knowledge. In this paper, we first employ neighborhood system to deal directly with the new information table formed by integrating gene expression data with biological knowledge, which can simultaneously present the information in multiple perspectives and do not weaken the information of individual gene for selection and classification. Then, we give a novel framework for gene selection and propose a significant gene selection method based on this framework by employing reduction algorithm in rough set theory. The proposed method is applied to the analysis of plant stress response. Experimental results on three data sets show that the proposed method is effective, as it can select significant gene subsets without redundancy and achieve high classification accuracy. Biological analysis for the results shows that the interpretability is well.

  2. Standards for plant synthetic biology: a common syntax for exchange of DNA parts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patron, Nicola J; Orzaez, Diego; Marillonnet, Sylvestre; Warzecha, Heribert; Matthewman, Colette; Youles, Mark; Raitskin, Oleg; Leveau, Aymeric; Farré, Gemma; Rogers, Christian; Smith, Alison; Hibberd, Julian; Webb, Alex A R; Locke, James; Schornack, Sebastian; Ajioka, Jim; Baulcombe, David C; Zipfel, Cyril; Kamoun, Sophien; Jones, Jonathan D G; Kuhn, Hannah; Robatzek, Silke; Van Esse, H Peter; Sanders, Dale; Oldroyd, Giles; Martin, Cathie; Field, Rob; O'Connor, Sarah; Fox, Samantha; Wulff, Brande; Miller, Ben; Breakspear, Andy; Radhakrishnan, Guru; Delaux, Pierre-Marc; Loqué, Dominique; Granell, Antonio; Tissier, Alain; Shih, Patrick; Brutnell, Thomas P; Quick, W Paul; Rischer, Heiko; Fraser, Paul D; Aharoni, Asaph; Raines, Christine; South, Paul F; Ané, Jean-Michel; Hamberger, Björn R; Langdale, Jane; Stougaard, Jens; Bouwmeester, Harro; Udvardi, Michael; Murray, James A H; Ntoukakis, Vardis; Schäfer, Patrick; Denby, Katherine; Edwards, Keith J; Osbourn, Anne; Haseloff, Jim

    2015-10-01

    Inventors in the field of mechanical and electronic engineering can access multitudes of components and, thanks to standardization, parts from different manufacturers can be used in combination with each other. The introduction of BioBrick standards for the assembly of characterized DNA sequences was a landmark in microbial engineering, shaping the field of synthetic biology. Here, we describe a standard for Type IIS restriction endonuclease-mediated assembly, defining a common syntax of 12 fusion sites to enable the facile assembly of eukaryotic transcriptional units. This standard has been developed and agreed by representatives and leaders of the international plant science and synthetic biology communities, including inventors, developers and adopters of Type IIS cloning methods. Our vision is of an extensive catalogue of standardized, characterized DNA parts that will accelerate plant bioengineering. © 2015 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  3. Uric acid in plants and microorganisms: Biological applications and genetics - A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hafez, Rehab M; Abdel-Rahman, Tahany M; Naguib, Rasha M

    2017-09-01

    Uric acid increased accumulation and/or reduced excretion in human bodies is closely related to pathogenesis of gout and hyperuricemia. It is highly affected by the high intake of food rich in purine. Uric acid is present in both higher plants and microorganisms with species dependent concentration. Urate-degrading enzymes are found both in plants and microorganisms but the mechanisms by which plant degrade uric acid was found to be different among them. Higher plants produce various metabolites which could inhibit xanthine oxidase and xanthine oxidoreductase, so prohibit the oxidation of hypoxanthine to xanthine then to uric acid in the purine metabolism. However, microorganisms produce group of degrading enzymes uricase, allantoinase, allantoicase and urease, which catalyze the degradation of uric acid to the ammonia. In humans, researchers found that several mutations caused a pseudogenization (silencing) of the uricase gene in ancestral apes which exist as an insoluble crystalloid in peroxisomes. This is in contrast to microorganisms in which uricases are soluble and exist either in cytoplasm or peroxisomes. Moreover, many recombinant uricases with higher activity than the wild type uricases could be induced successfully in many microorganisms. The present review deals with the occurrence of uric acid in plants and other organisms specially microorganisms in addition to the mechanisms by which plant extracts, metabolites and enzymes could reduce uric acid in blood. The genetic and genes encoding for uric acid in plants and microorganisms are also presented.

  4. Chemical and biological aspects of water and sludge from treatment plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ottaviani, M.; Bonadonna, L.; Mancini, L.; Veschetti, E.; Gasbarro, M.; Lulli, G.; Zanobini, A.; Gabrieli, R.; Donia, D.; Divizia, M. (Istituto Superiore di Sanita' , Rome (Italy). Lab. di Igiene Ambientale Azienda Comunale Elettricita' ed Acque, Rome (Italy) Rome Univ. ' Tor Vergata' (Italy). Dip. di Sanita' Pubblica e Biologia Cellulare)

    Waste water and sewage sludge samples were collected from an urban waste water treatment plant in Rome (Italy). Chemical and biological (microbiological, virological and parassitological) analyses were performed for verifying the hygienic quality of the samples. On the basis of the results obtained, the possibility of utilizing the waste water and the sludge analyzed in view of a correct agricultural re-use can be taken into consideration.

  5. A simulation benchmark to evaluate the performance of advanced control techniques in biological wastewater treatment plants

    OpenAIRE

    Sotomayor O.A.Z.; Park S.W.; Garcia C

    2001-01-01

    Wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) are complex systems that incorporate a large number of biological, physicochemical and biochemical processes. They are large and nonlinear systems subject to great disturbances in incoming loads. The primary goal of a WWTP is to reduce pollutants and the second goal is disturbance rejection, in order to obtain good effluent quality. Modeling and computer simulations are key tools in the achievement of these two goals. They are essential to describe, predict ...

  6. The female gametophyte: an emerging model for cell type-specific systems biology in plant development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc William Schmid

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology, a holistic approach describing a system emerging from the interactions of its molecular components, critically depends on accurate qualitative determination and quantitative measurements of these components. Development and improvement of large-scale profiling methods (omics now facilitates comprehensive measurements of many relevant molecules. For multicellular organisms, such as animals, fungi, algae, and plants, the complexity of the system is augmented by the presence of specialized cell types and organs, and a complex interplay within and between them. Cell type-specific analyses are therefore crucial for the understanding of developmental processes and environmental responses. This review first gives an overview of current methods used for large-scale profiling of specific cell types exemplified by recent advances in plant biology. The focus then lies on suitable model systems to study plant development and cell type specification. We introduce the female gametophyte of flowering plants as an ideal model to study fundamental developmental processes. Moreover, the female reproductive lineage is of importance for the emergence of evolutionary novelties such as an unequal parental contribution to the tissue nurturing the embryo or the clonal production of seeds by asexual reproduction (apomixis. Understanding these processes is not only interesting from a developmental or evolutionary perspective, but bears great potential for further crop improvement and the simplification of breeding efforts. We finally highlight novel methods, which are already available or which will likely soon facilitate large-scale profiling of the specific cell types of the female gametophyte in both model and non-model species. We conclude that it may take only few years until an evolutionary systems biology approach toward female gametogenesis may decipher some of its biologically most interesting and economically most valuable processes.

  7. Stable heterologous expression of biologically active terpenoids in green plant cells

    OpenAIRE

    Nur Kusaira Binti Khairul eIkram; Xin eZhan; Xiwu ePan; Brian Christropher eKing; Henrik Toft Simonsen

    2015-01-01

    Plants biosynthesize a great diversity of biologically active small molecules of interest for fragrances, flavors, and pharmaceuticals. Among specialized metabolites, terpenoids represent the greatest molecular diversity. Many terpenoids are very complex, and total chemical synthesis often requires many steps and difficult chemical reactions, resulting in a low final yield or incorrect stereochemistry. Several drug candidates with terpene skeletons are difficult to obtain by chemical synthesi...

  8. Release from belowground enemies and shifts in root traits as interrelated drivers of alien plant invasion success: a hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Wayne

    2015-10-01

    Our understanding of the interrelated mechanisms driving plant invasions, such as the interplay between enemy release and resource-acquisition traits, is biased by an aboveground perspective. To address this bias, I hypothesize that plant release from belowground enemies (especially fungal pathogens) will give invasive plant species a fitness advantage in the alien range, via shifts in root traits (e.g., increased specific root length and branching intensity) that increase resource uptake and competitive ability compared to native species in the alien range, and compared to plants of the invader in its native range. Such root-trait changes could be ecological or evolutionary in nature. I explain how shifts in root traits could occur as a consequence of enemy release and contribute to invasion success of alien plants, and how they could be interrelated with other potential belowground drivers of invasion success (allelopathy, mutualist enhancement). Finally, I outline the approaches that could be taken to test whether belowground enemy release results in increased competitive ability and nutrient uptake by invasive alien plants, via changes in root traits in the alien range.

  9. Field biology of the beetle Aegopsis bolboceridus in Brazil, with a list of host plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Charles M; Frizzas, Marina R

    2013-01-01

    The white grub, Aegopsis bolboceridus (Thomson) (Coleoptera: Melolonthidae), is an important vegetable and corn pest in central Brazil. The objective of this study was to examine the biology of A. bolboceridus in the field and to update the list of its host plants. The study was conducted in an area with vegetable crops and corn located in the Federal District of Brazil. Samplings were taken to observe the biological stages of A. bolboceridus, preferred oviposition sites, and the adult swarming period. A. bolboceridus exhibited a univoltine cycle that lasted approximately 12 months from egg to active adults. Its eggs were found from October to November. The larval stage lasted approximately eight months, occurring between October and May. Pre-pupae were observed between April and June, and pupae were found between May and July. Inactive adults were observed in July and August, and the swarming period was between September and October. The females preferred to oviposit in sites with taller plants. Four new plant species were identified as hosts for this pest, and two new locations were recorded for its occurrence. This study is the first to describe the biology of a representative of the tribe Agaocephalini in Brazil.

  10. Sequence-Related Amplified Polymorphism (SRAP Markers: A Potential Resource for Studies in Plant Molecular Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel W. H. Robarts

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available In the past few decades, many investigations in the field of plant biology have employed selectively neutral, multilocus, dominant markers such as inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR, random-amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD, and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP to address hypotheses at lower taxonomic levels. More recently, sequence-related amplified polymorphism (SRAP markers have been developed, which are used to amplify coding regions of DNA with primers targeting open reading frames. These markers have proven to be robust and highly variable, on par with AFLP, and are attained through a significantly less technically demanding process. SRAP markers have been used primarily for agronomic and horticultural purposes, developing quantitative trait loci in advanced hybrids and assessing genetic diversity of large germplasm collections. Here, we suggest that SRAP markers should be employed for research addressing hypotheses in plant systematics, biogeography, conservation, ecology, and beyond. We provide an overview of the SRAP literature to date, review descriptive statistics of SRAP markers in a subset of 171 publications, and present relevant case studies to demonstrate the applicability of SRAP markers to the diverse field of plant biology. Results of these selected works indicate that SRAP markers have the potential to enhance the current suite of molecular tools in a diversity of fields by providing an easy-to-use. highly variable marker with inherent biological significance.

  11. Biological Effects of Medicinal Plants on Induced Periodontitis: A Systematic Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Moara e Silva Conceição; di Lenardo, David

    2016-01-01

    Objective. The aim of this systematic review was to investigate the advances in the study of medicinal plants and their biologic effects on periodontitis in animal models. Study Design. A systematic search was conducted by three independent researchers, who screened articles published up to March/2016, to identify the studies that contained sufficient and clear information on the association of the medicinal plants and periodontitis in murine models. The searches were performed using PubMed, Cochrane, and Science Direct databases. Results. After a critical analysis of titles and abstracts, 30 studies were finally eligible for analysis. The studies presented a great diversity of the experiment designed regarding the methods of induced periodontitis and the evaluation of the medicinal plants efficacy. None of the studies described the possible toxic effects associated with the administration of the plant material to animals and whether they could prevent damage to organs caused by systemic effect of induced periodontitis. Gel-based formulations containing plant substances are seen as an interesting strategy to treat periodontitis. Conclusions. In this systematic review, the state-of-the-art knowledge on the medicinal plants and the induced periodontitis was critically evaluated and discussed from the experiment designed to the possible clinical application. PMID:27738432

  12. Convergence beyond flower morphology? Reproductive biology of hummingbird-pollinated plants in the Brazilian Cerrado.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, C; Maruyama, P K; Oliveira, P E

    2016-03-01

    Convergent reproductive traits in non-related plants may be the result of similar environmental conditions and/or specialised interactions with pollinators. Here, we documented the pollination and reproductive biology of Bionia coriacea (Fabaceae), Esterhazya splendida (Orobanchaceae) and Ananas ananassoides (Bromeliaceae) as case studies in the context of hummingbird pollination in Cerrado, the Neotropical savanna of Central South America. We combined our results with a survey of hummingbird pollination studies in the region to investigate the recently suggested association of hummingbird pollination and self-compatibility. Plant species studied here differed in their specialisation for ornithophily, from more generalist A. ananassoides to somewhat specialist B. coriacea and E. splendida. This continuum of specialisation in floral traits also translated into floral visitor composition. Amazilia fimbriata was the most frequent pollinator for all species, and the differences in floral display and nectar energy availability among plant species affect hummingbirds' behaviour. Most of the hummingbird-pollinated Cerrado plants (60.0%, n = 20), including those studied here, were self-incompatible, in contrast to other biomes in the Neotropics. Association to more generalist, often territorial, hummingbirds, and resulting reduced pollen flow in open savanna areas may explain predominance of self-incompatibility. But it is possible that mating system is more associated with the predominance of woody hummingbird plants in the Cerrado plant assemblage than to the pollination system itself.

  13. Nutrient Recovery of Plant Leachates Under Thermal, Biological, and Photocatalytic Pretreatments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Les

    2015-01-01

    Nutrient recovery has always been a problem for long distance and long-term space missions. To allow humans to man these missions, a steady source of oxygen, water, and food are necessary for survival beyond Earth's atmosphere. Plants are currently an area of interest since they are capable of providing all three resources for life sustainability. We are currently interested in nutrient recovery for future plant growth and simple aqueous leachate extractions can recover some of the nutrients. However, leaching plants also removes water-soluble organic plant wastes, which inhibits plant growth if not separated properly. To combat the issues with waste and maximize nutrient recovery, we are attempting to pre-treat the plant matter using biological, thermal, and photocatalytic methods before subjecting the solution with variable-strength acid digestion. For the biological method, the inoculums: mixed heterotrophic/nitrifying bioreactor effluent and Trichoderma vessei are used in an attempt to liberate more nutrients from the plant matter. For the thermal method, plants are subjected to varying temperatures at different retention times to determine nutrient recovery. Lastly, the photocatalytic method utilizes TiO (sub 2)'s oxidizing abilities under specific pHs and retention times to reduce organic wastes and improve nutrient gains. A final acid digestion serves to liberate nutrients even further in order to maximize recovery. So far, we have tested ideal acid digestion variables for practicality and performance in our experiments. We found that a low retention time of 10 minutes and a high acid concentration of 0.1 and 1 mole HCl were the most effective at nutrient recovery. For space travel purposes, 0.1 mole currently looks like a viable acid digestion to use since it is relatively effective and sustainable from a mass and energy balance if acid recovery can be performed on waste brines. Biological pretreatments do not look to be too effective and the thermal and

  14. Investigating the biology of plant infection by the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Urdiroz, Magdalena; Oses-Ruiz, Miriam; Ryder, Lauren S; Talbot, Nicholas J

    2016-05-01

    The rice blast fungus, Magnaporthe oryzae, is responsible for the most serious disease of rice and is a continuing threat to ensuring global food security. The fungus has also, however, emerged as a model experimental organism for understanding plant infection processes by pathogenic fungi. This is largely due to its amenability to both classical and molecular genetics, coupled with the efforts of a very large international research community. This review, which is based on a plenary presentation at the 28th Fungal Genetics Conference in Asilomar, California in March 2015, describes recent progress in understanding how M. oryzae uses specialised cell called appressoria to bring about plant infection and the underlying biology of this developmental process. We also review how the fungus is then able to proliferate within rice tissue, deploying effector proteins to facilitate its spread by suppressing plant immunity and promoting growth and development of the fungus.

  15. Biological Activities of Essential Oils: From Plant Chemoecology to Traditional Healing Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javad Sharifi-Rad

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Essential oils are complex mixtures of hydrocarbons and their oxygenated derivatives arising from two different isoprenoid pathways. Essential oils are produced by glandular trichomes and other secretory structures, specialized secretory tissues mainly diffused onto the surface of plant organs, particularly flowers and leaves, thus exerting a pivotal ecological role in plant. In addition, essential oils have been used, since ancient times, in many different traditional healing systems all over the world, because of their biological activities. Many preclinical studies have documented antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticancer activities of essential oils in a number of cell and animal models, also elucidating their mechanism of action and pharmacological targets, though the paucity of in human studies limits the potential of essential oils as effective and safe phytotherapeutic agents. More well-designed clinical trials are needed in order to ascertain the real efficacy and safety of these plant products.

  16. The Potential of Systems Biology to Discover Antibacterial Mechanisms of Plant Phenolics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rempe, Caroline S.; Burris, Kellie P.; Lenaghan, Scott C.; Stewart, C. Neal

    2017-01-01

    Drug resistance of bacterial pathogens is a growing problem that can be addressed through the discovery of compounds with novel mechanisms of antibacterial activity. Natural products, including plant phenolic compounds, are one source of diverse chemical structures that could inhibit bacteria through novel mechanisms. However, evaluating novel antibacterial mechanisms of action can be difficult and is uncommon in assessments of plant phenolic compounds. With systems biology approaches, though, antibacterial mechanisms can be assessed without the bias of target-directed bioassays to enable the discovery of novel mechanism(s) of action against drug resistant microorganisms. This review article summarizes the current knowledge of antibacterial mechanisms of action of plant phenolic compounds and discusses relevant methodology. PMID:28360902

  17. Biological Activities of Essential Oils: From Plant Chemoecology to Traditional Healing Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharifi-Rad, Javad; Sureda, Antoni; Tenore, Gian Carlo; Daglia, Maria; Sharifi-Rad, Mehdi; Valussi, Marco; Tundis, Rosa; Sharifi-Rad, Marzieh; Loizzo, Monica R; Ademiluyi, Adedayo Oluwaseun; Sharifi-Rad, Razieh; Ayatollahi, Seyed Abdulmajid; Iriti, Marcello

    2017-01-01

    Essential oils are complex mixtures of hydrocarbons and their oxygenated derivatives arising from two different isoprenoid pathways. Essential oils are produced by glandular trichomes and other secretory structures, specialized secretory tissues mainly diffused onto the surface of plant organs, particularly flowers and leaves, thus exerting a pivotal ecological role in plant. In addition, essential oils have been used, since ancient times, in many different traditional healing systems all over the world, because of their biological activities. Many preclinical studies have documented antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticancer activities of essential oils in a number of cell and animal models, also elucidating their mechanism of action and pharmacological targets, though the paucity of in human studies limits the potential of essential oils as effective and safe phytotherapeutic agents. More well-designed clinical trials are needed in order to ascertain the real efficacy and safety of these plant products.

  18. Data Mining Methods for Omics and Knowledge of Crude Medicinal Plants toward Big Data Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farit M. Afendi

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Molecular biological data has rapidly increased with the recent progress of the Omics fields, e.g., genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics that necessitates the development of databases and methods for efficient storage, retrieval, integration and analysis of massive data. The present study reviews the usage of KNApSAcK Family DB in metabolomics and related area, discusses several statistical methods for handling multivariate data and shows their application on Indonesian blended herbal medicines (Jamu as a case study. Exploration using Biplot reveals many plants are rarely utilized while some plants are highly utilized toward specific efficacy. Furthermore, the ingredients of Jamu formulas are modeled using Partial Least Squares Discriminant Analysis (PLS-DA in order to predict their efficacy. The plants used in each Jamu medicine served as the predictors, whereas the efficacy of each Jamu provided the responses. This model produces 71.6% correct classification in predicting efficacy. Permutation test then is used to determine plants that serve as main ingredients in Jamu formula by evaluating the significance of the PLS-DA coefficients. Next, in order to explain the role of plants that serve as main ingredients in Jamu medicines, information of pharmacological activity of the plants is added to the predictor block. Then N-PLS-DA model, multiway version of PLS-DA, is utilized to handle the three-dimensional array of the predictor block. The resulting N-PLS-DA model reveals that the effects of some pharmacological activities are specific for certain efficacy and the other activities are diverse toward many efficacies. Mathematical modeling introduced in the present study can be utilized in global analysis of big data targeting to reveal the underlying biology.

  19. DATA MINING METHODS FOR OMICS AND KNOWLEDGE OF CRUDE MEDICINAL PLANTS TOWARD BIG DATA BIOLOGY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farit M. Afendi

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Molecular biological data has rapidly increased with the recent progress of the Omics fields, e.g., genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics that necessitates the development of databases and methods for efficient storage, retrieval, integration and analysis of massive data. The present study reviews the usage of KNApSAcK Family DB in metabolomics and related area, discusses several statistical methods for handling multivariate data and shows their application on Indonesian blended herbal medicines (Jamu as a case study. Exploration using Biplot reveals many plants are rarely utilized while some plants are highly utilized toward specific efficacy. Furthermore, the ingredients of Jamu formulas are modeled using Partial Least Squares Discriminant Analysis (PLS-DA in order to predict their efficacy. The plants used in each Jamu medicine served as the predictors, whereas the efficacy of each Jamu provided the responses. This model produces 71.6% correct classification in predicting efficacy. Permutation test then is used to determine plants that serve as main ingredients in Jamu formula by evaluating the significance of the PLS-DA coefficients. Next, in order to explain the role of plants that serve as main ingredients in Jamu medicines, information of pharmacological activity of the plants is added to the predictor block. Then N-PLS-DA model, multiway version of PLS-DA, is utilized to handle the three-dimensional array of the predictor block. The resulting N-PLS-DA model reveals that the effects of some pharmacological activities are specific for certain efficacy and the other activities are diverse toward many efficacies. Mathematical modeling introduced in the present study can be utilized in global analysis of big data targeting to reveal the underlying biology.

  20. Succession of root-associated fungi in Pisum sativum during a plant growth cycle as examined by 454 pyrosequencing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yu, L.; Nicolaisen, M.; Larsen, J.

    2012-01-01

    was to examine succession patterns of root-associated fungi in pea during a full plant growth cycle. Methods Plants were grown in pots with field soil in a growth chamber under controlled conditions. Fungal communities in pea roots were analyzed at different plant growth stages including the vegetative growth......Purpose Roots are inhabited by a broad range of fungi, including pathogens and mycorrhizal fungi, with functional traits related to plant health and nutrition. Management of these fungi in agroecosystems requires profound knowledge about their ecology. The main objective of this study......, flowering and senescence, using 454 pyrosequencing. Results One hundred and twenty one non-singleton operational taxonomic units (OTUs) representing fungal species were detected. Pathogenic and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi dominated during the vegetative growth stage, whereas saprotrophic fungi dominated...

  1. Success evaluation of the biological control of Fusarium wilts of cucumber, banana, and tomato since 2000 and future research strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raza, Waseem; Ling, Ning; Zhang, Ruifu; Huang, Qiwei; Xu, Yangchun; Shen, Qirong

    2017-03-01

    The Fusarium wilt caused by Fusarium oxysporum strains is the most devastating disease of cucumber, banana, and tomato. The biological control of this disease has become an attractive alternative to the chemical fungicides and other conventional control methods. In this review, the research trends and biological control efficiencies (BCE) of different microbial strains since 2000 are reviewed in detail, considering types of microbial genera, inoculum application methods, plant growth medium and conditions, inoculum application with amendments, and co-inoculation of different microbial strains and how those affect the BCE of Fusarium wilt. The data evaluation showed that the BCE of biocontrol agents was higher against the Fusarium wilt of cucumber compared to the Fusarium wilts of banana and tomato. Several biocontrol agents mainly Bacillus, Trichoderma, Pseudomonas, nonpathogenic Fusarium, and Penicillium strains were evaluated to control Fusarium wilt, but still this lethal disease could not be controlled completely. We have discussed different reasons of inconsistent results and recommendations for the betterment of BCE in the future. This review provides knowledge of the biotechnology of biological control of Fusarium wilt of cucumber, banana, and tomato in a nut shell that will provide researchers a beginning line to start and to organize and plan research for the future studies.

  2. Enhanced biological phosphorus removal - results of experiences in three large waste water treatment plants. Biologische Phosphatelimination - Betriebserfahrungen an drei Grossanlagen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wolf, P. (Fachbereich Bauingenieurwesen, FG Siedlungswasserwirtschaft, Kassel Univ. (Gesamthochschule) (Germany)); Telgmann, U. (Fachbereich Bauingenieurwesen, FG Siedlungswasserwirtschaft, Kassel Univ. (Gesamthochschule) (Germany)); Memmen, K. (Fachbereich Bauingenieurwesen, FG Siedlungswasserwirtschaft, Kassel Univ. (Gesamthochschule) (Germany))

    1994-09-01

    Within a scientific project especially the operation of four real-size sewage treatment plants with different processes of enhanced biological phosphorus removal is investigated under the aspect of efficiency, stability, practicability and costs of the enhanced biological phosphorus removal. Three plants and first results are explained and compared as well with one another as with data, which are generally regarded as favourable conditions for the enhanced biological phosphorus removal. Between the plants there are significant differences in the degree of P-elimination mainly due to different characteristics of the wastewater. An important influence on P-effluent concentrations may be exacted by P-resolution in the final clarifier. (orig.)

  3. Stability and succession of the rhizosphere microbiota depends upon plant type and soil composition

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Tkacz, Andrzej; Cheema, Jitender; Chandra, Govind; Grant, Alastair; Poole, Philip S

    2015-01-01

    ... to those of other plants or unplanted soil. Microbiota diversity remained high in compost, but declined drastically in sand, with bacterial opportunists and putative autotrophs becoming dominant...

  4. Tandem shock waves in medicine and biology: a review of potential applications and successes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukes, P.; Fernández, F.; Gutiérrez-Aceves, J.; Fernández, E.; Alvarez, U. M.; Sunka, P.; Loske, A. M.

    2016-01-01

    Shock waves have been established as a safe and effective treatment for a wide range of diseases. Research groups worldwide are working on improving shock wave technology and developing new applications of shock waves to medicine and biology. The passage of a shock wave through soft tissue, fluids, and suspensions containing cells may result in acoustic cavitation i.e., the expansion and violent collapse of microbubbles, which generates secondary shock waves and the emission of microjets of fluid. Cavitation has been recognized as a significant phenomenon that produces both desirable and undesirable biomedical effects. Several studies have shown that cavitation can be controlled by emitting two shock waves that can be delayed by tenths or hundreds of microseconds. These dual-pulse pressure pulses, which are known as tandem shock waves, have been shown to enhance in vitro and in vivo urinary stone fragmentation, cause significant cytotoxic effects in tumor cells, delay tumor growth, enhance the bactericidal effect of shock waves and significantly increase the efficiency of genetic transformations in bacteria and fungi. This article provides an overview of the basic physical principles, methodologies, achievements and potential uses of tandem shock waves to improve biomedical applications.

  5. Mycorrhiza-plant colonization patterns on a subalpine glacier forefront as a model system of primary succession.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cázares, Efrén; Trappe, James M; Jumpponen, Ari

    2005-09-01

    Lyman glacier in the North Cascades Mountains of Washington has a subalpine forefront characterized by a well-developed terminal moraine, inconspicuous successional moraines, fluting, and outwash. These deposits were depleted of symbiotic fungi when first exposed but colonized by them over time after exposure. Four major groups of plant species in this system are (1) mycorrhiza-independent or facultative mycotrophic, (2) dependent on arbuscular mycorrhizae (AM) (3) dependent on ericoid mycorrhiza (ERM) or ectomycorrhizae (EM), and (4) colonized by dark-septate (DS) endophytes. We hypothesized that availability of mycorrhizal propagules was related to the success of mycorrhiza-dependent plants in colonizing new substrates in naturally evolved ecosystems. To test this hypothesis roots samples of 66 plant species were examined for mycorrhizal colonization. The plants were sampled from communities at increasing distances from the glacier terminus to compare the newest communities with successively older ones. Long established, secondary successional dry meadow communities adjacent to the glacier forefront, and nearby high alpine communities were sampled for comparison. DS were common on most plant species on the forefront. Nonmycorrhizal plants predominated in the earlier successional sites, whereas the proportion of mycorrhizal plants generally increased with age of community. AM were present, mostly at low levels, and nearly absent in two sites of the forefront. ERM were present in all species of Ericaceae sampled, and EM in all species of Pinaceae and Salicaceae. Roots of plants in the long established meadow and heath communities adjacent to the forefront and the high alpine community all had one or another of the colonization types, with DS and AM predominating.

  6. A Unique Model Platform for C4 Plant Systems and Synthetic Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-12-10

    were obtained suggesting successful agrobacterium mediated transformation. Introduction: C4 plants such as sugarcane, maize and sorghum are more...developing flower meristem on day 18. The inoculated shoot was tagged because new shoots emerge over time and it can be difficult to identify the...original inoculated shoot. An agrobacterium-mediated transformation protocol was developed for Setaria viridis. Onset of floral embryogenesis was

  7. Ecological succession, hydrology and carbon acquisition of biological soil crusts measured at the micro-scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tighe, Matthew; Haling, Rebecca E; Flavel, Richard J; Young, Iain M

    2012-01-01

    The hydrological characteristics of biological soil crusts (BSCs) are not well understood. In particular the relationship between runoff and BSC surfaces at relatively large (>1 m(2)) scales is ambiguous. Further, there is a dearth of information on small scale (mm to cm) hydrological characterization of crust types which severely limits any interpretation of trends at larger scales. Site differences and broad classifications of BSCs as one soil surface type rather than into functional form exacerbate the problem. This study examines, for the first time, some hydrological characteristics and related surface variables of a range of crust types at one site and at a small scale (sub mm to mm). X-ray tomography and fine scale hydrological measurements were made on intact BSCs, followed by C and C isotopic analyses. A 'hump' shaped relationship was found between the successional stage/sensitivity to physical disturbance classification of BSCs and their hydrophobicity, and a similar but 'inverse hump' relationship exists with hydraulic conductivity. Several bivariate relationships were found between hydrological variables. Hydraulic conductivity and hydrophobicity of BSCs were closely related but this association was confounded by crust type. The surface coverage of crust and the microporosity 0.5 mm below the crust surface were closely associated irrespective of crust type. The δ (13)C signatures of the BSCs were also related to hydraulic conductivity, suggesting that the hydrological characteristics of BSCs alter the chemical processes of their immediate surroundings via the physiological response (C acquisition) of the crust itself. These small scale results illustrate the wide range of hydrological properties associated with BSCs, and suggest associations between the ecological successional stage/functional form of BSCs and their ecohydrological role that needs further examination.

  8. OAK RIDGE Y-12 PLANT BIOLOGICAL MONITORING AND ABATEMENT PROGRAM (BMAP) PLAN

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    ADAMS, S.M.; BRANDT, C.C.; CHRISTENSEN, S.W.; CICERONE, D.S.; GREELEY, M.S.JR; HILL, W.R.; HUSTON, M.S.; KSZOS, L.A.; MCCARTHY, J.F.; PETERSON, M.J.; RYON, M.G.; SMITH, J.G.; SOUTHWORTH, G.R.; STEWART, A.J.

    1998-10-01

    The proposed Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) for East Fork Poplar Creek (EFPC) at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant, as described, will be conducted for the duration of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit issued for the Y-12 Plant on April 28, 1995, and which became effective July 1, 1995. The basic approach to biological monitoring used in this program was developed by the staff in the Environmental Sciences Division at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory at the request of Y- 12 Plant personnel. The proposed BMAP plan is based on results of biological monitoring conducted since 1985. Details of the specific procedures used in the current routine monitoring program are provided but experimental designs for future studies are described in less detail. The overall strategy used in developing this plan was, and continues to be, to use the results obtained from each task to define the scope of future monitoring efforts. Such efforts may require more intensive sampling than initially proposed in some areas (e.g., additional toxicity testing if initial results indicate low survival or reproduction) or a reduction in sampling intensity in others (e.g., reduction in the number of sampling sites when no impact is observed). By using the results of previous monitoring efforts to define the current program and to guide us in the development of future studies, an effective integrated monitoring program has been developed to assess the impacts of the Y-12 Plant operation on the biota of EFPC and to document the ecological effects of remedial actions.

  9. Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Adams, S.M.; Brandt, C.C.; Christensen, S.W.; Greeley, M.S.JR.; Hill, W.R.; Peterson, M.J.; Ryon, M.G.; Smith, J.G.; Southworth, G.R.; Stewart, A.J.

    2000-09-01

    The revised Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) for East Fork Poplar Creek (EFPC) at the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant, as described, will be conducted as required by the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit issued for the Y-12 Plant on April 28, 1995 and became effective July 1, 1995. The basic approach to biological monitoring used in this program was developed by the staff in the Environmental Science Division (ESD) at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) at the request of the Y-12 Plant. The revision to the BMAP plan is based on results of biological monitoring conducted during the period of 1985 to present. Details of the specific procedures used in the current routine monitoring program are provided; experimental designs for future studies are described in less detail. The overall strategy used in developing this plan was, and continues to be, to use the results obtained from each task to define the scope of future monitoring efforts. Such efforts may require more intensive sampling than initially proposed in some areas (e.g., additional bioaccumulation monitoring if results indicate unexpectedly high PCBs or Hg) or a reduction in sampling intensity in others (e.g., reduction in the number of sampling sites when no impact is still observed). The program scope will be re-evaluated annually. By using the results of previous monitoring efforts to define the current program and to guide us in the development of future studies, an effective integrated monitoring program has been developed to assess the impacts of Y-12 Plant operations (past and present) on the biota of EFPC and to document the ecological effects of remedial actions.

  10. Plant functional traits mediate reproductive phenology and success in response to experimental warming and snow addition in Tibet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorji, Tsechoe; Totland, Orjan; Moe, Stein R; Hopping, Kelly A; Pan, Jianbin; Klein, Julia A

    2013-02-01

    Global climate change is predicted to have large impacts on the phenology and reproduction of alpine plants, which will have important implications for plant demography and community interactions, trophic dynamics, ecosystem energy balance, and human livelihoods. In this article we report results of a 3-year, fully factorial experimental study exploring how warming, snow addition, and their combination affect reproductive phenology, effort, and success of four alpine plant species belonging to three different life forms in a semiarid, alpine meadow ecosystem on the central Tibetan Plateau. Our results indicate that warming and snow addition change reproductive phenology and success, but responses are not uniform across species. Moreover, traits associated with resource acquisition, such as rooting depth and life history (early vs. late flowering), mediate plant phenology, and reproductive responses to changing climatic conditions. Specifically, we found that warming delayed the reproductive phenology and decreased number of inflorescences of Kobresia pygmaea C. B. Clarke, a shallow-rooted, early-flowering plant, which may be mainly constrained by upper-soil moisture availability. Because K. pygmaea is the dominant species in the alpine meadow ecosystem, these results may have important implications for ecosystem dynamics and for pastoralists and wildlife in the region.

  11. Pollination biology of fruit-bearing hedgerow plants and the role of flower-visiting insects in fruit-set.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobs, Jennifer H; Clark, Suzanne J; Denholm, Ian; Goulson, Dave; Stoate, Chris; Osborne, Juliet L

    2009-12-01

    In the UK, the flowers of fruit-bearing hedgerow plants provide a succession of pollen and nectar for flower-visiting insects for much of the year. The fruits of hedgerow plants are a source of winter food for frugivorous birds on farmland. It is unclear whether recent declines in pollinator populations are likely to threaten fruit-set and hence food supply for birds. The present study investigates the pollination biology of five common hedgerow plants: blackthorn (Prunus spinosa), hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna), dog rose (Rosa canina), bramble (Rubus fruticosus) and ivy (Hedera helix). The requirement for insect pollination was investigated initially by excluding insects from flowers by using mesh bags and comparing immature and mature fruit-set with those of open-pollinated flowers. Those plants that showed a requirement for insect pollination were then tested to compare fruit-set under two additional pollination service scenarios: (1) reduced pollination, with insects excluded from flowers bagged for part of the flowering period, and (2) supplemental pollination, with flowers hand cross-pollinated to test for pollen limitation. The proportions of flowers setting fruit in blackthorn, hawthorn and ivy were significantly reduced when insects were excluded from flowers by using mesh bags, whereas fruit-set in bramble and dog rose were unaffected. Restricting the exposure of flowers to pollinators had no significant effect on fruit-set. However, blackthorn and hawthorn were found to be pollen-limited, suggesting that the pollination service was inadequate in the study area. Ensuring strong populations of insect pollinators may be essential to guarantee a winter fruit supply for birds in UK hedgerows.

  12. On the possibility of using biological toxicity tests to monitor the work of wastewater treatment plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zorić Jelena

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to ascertain the possibility of using biological toxicity tests to monitor influent and effluent wastewaters of wastewater treatment plants. The information obtained through these tests is used to prevent toxic pollutants from entering wastewater treatment plants and discharge of toxic pollutants into the recipient. Samples of wastewaters from the wastewater treatment plants of Kragujevac and Gornji Milanovac, as well as from the Lepenica and Despotovica Rivers immediately before and after the influx of wastewaters from the plants, were collected between October 2004 and June 2005. Used as the test organism in these tests was the zebrafish Brachydanio rerio Hamilton - Buchanon (Cyprinidae. The acute toxicity test of 96/h duration showed that the tested samples had a slight acutely toxic effect on B. rerio, except for the sample of influent wastewater into the Cvetojevac wastewater treatment plant, which had moderately acute toxicity, indicating that such water should be prevented from entering the system in order to eliminate its detrimental effect on the purification process.

  13. Construction of biological control strain of Trichoderma viride and study of their ability to induce plant disease resistance

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LIU Shi-wang; GUO Ze-jian

    2004-01-01

    @@ Plant diseases heavily affct plant growth and crop yield even in modern agriculture. Control its difficult because pathogens mutate frequently, and this leads in frequent breaking of disease resistance in commercial cultivars. The excessive application of chemical pesticides is not only producing pesticideresistant pathogens, but it is harming the environment threatening the health of human beings.Therefore, the use of biological control agents (BCA) may provide an environmental friendly alternative to chemicals for plant disease control. Hypersensitive response (HR) and systemic acquired resistance (SAR) are the typical expressions of plant defense reactions. Once SAR is established,, the plants exhibits a broad-spectrum of disease resistance against pathogen attack. Researchers have identified elicitor proteins, such as elicitins and harpins, which activate plant defense reactions. It would be useful to explore the possibility of using biological control agents to induce a status of SAR in crop plants.

  14. A simulation benchmark to evaluate the performance of advanced control techniques in biological wastewater treatment plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sotomayor O.A.Z.

    2001-01-01

    Full Text Available Wastewater treatment plants (WWTP are complex systems that incorporate a large number of biological, physicochemical and biochemical processes. They are large and nonlinear systems subject to great disturbances in incoming loads. The primary goal of a WWTP is to reduce pollutants and the second goal is disturbance rejection, in order to obtain good effluent quality. Modeling and computer simulations are key tools in the achievement of these two goals. They are essential to describe, predict and control the complicated interactions of the processes. Numerous control techniques (algorithms and control strategies (structures have been suggested to regulate WWTP; however, it is difficult to make a discerning performance evaluation due to the nonuniformity of the simulated plants used. The main objective of this paper is to present a benchmark of an entire biological wastewater treatment plant in order to evaluate, through simulations, different control techniques. This benchmark plays the role of an activated sludge process used for removal of organic matter and nitrogen from domestic effluents. The development of this simulator is based on models widely accepted by the international community and is implemented in Matlab/Simulink (The MathWorks, Inc. platform. The benchmark considers plant layout and the effects of influent characteristics. It also includes a test protocol for analyzing the open and closed-loop responses of the plant. Examples of control applications in the benchmark are implemented employing conventional PI controllers. The following common control strategies are tested: dissolved oxygen (DO concentration-based control, respirometry-based control and nitrate concentration-based control.

  15. Biological Nitrogen Fixation by Legumes and N Uptake by Coffee Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo de Sá Mendonça

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Green manures are an alternative for substituting or supplementing mineral nitrogen fertilizers. The aim of this study was to quantify biological N fixation (BNF and the N contribution derived from BNF (N-BNF to N levels in leaves of coffee intercropped with legumes grown on four family farms located in the mountainous region of the Atlantic Forest Biome in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. The following green manures were evaluated: pinto peanuts (Arachis pintoi, calopo (Calopogonium mucunoides, crotalaria (Crotalaria spectabilis, Brazilian stylo (Stylosanthes guianensis, pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan, lablab beans (Dolichos lablab, and velvet beans (Stizolobium deeringianum, and spontaneous plants. The experimental design was randomized blocks with a 4 × 8 factorial arrangement (four agricultural properties and eight green manures, and four replications. One hundred grams of fresh matter of each green manure plant were dried in an oven to obtain the dry matter. We then performed chemical and biochemical characterizations and determined the levels of 15N and 14N, which were used to quantify BNF through the 15N (δ15N natural abundance technique. The legumes C. mucunoides, S. guianensis, C. cajan, and D. lablab had the highest rates of BNF, at 46.1, 45.9, 44.4, and 42.9 %, respectively. C. cajan was the legume that contributed the largest amount of N (44.42 kg ha-1 via BNF.C. cajan, C. spectabilis, and C. mucunoides transferred 55.8, 48.8, and 48.1 %, respectively, of the N from biological fixation to the coffee plants. The use of legumes intercropped with coffee plants is important in supplying N, as well as in transferring N derived from BNF to nutrition of the coffee plants.

  16. Systematic review of biological effects of exposure to static electric fields. Part II: Invertebrates and plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmiedchen, Kristina; Petri, Anne-Kathrin; Driessen, Sarah; Bailey, William H

    2017-09-27

    The construction of high-voltage direct current (HVDC) lines for the long-distance transport of energy is becoming increasingly popular. This has raised public concern about potential environmental impacts of the static electric fields (EF) produced under and near HVDC power lines. As the second part of a comprehensive literature analysis, the aim of this systematic review was to assess the effects of static EF exposure on biological functions in invertebrates and plants and to provide the basis for an environmental impact assessment of such exposures. The Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) was used to guide the methodological conduct and reporting. Thirty-three studies - 14 invertebrate and 19 plant studies - met the eligibility criteria and were included in this review. The reported behavioral responses of insects and planarians upon exposure strongly suggest that invertebrates are able to perceive the presence of a static EF. Many other studies reported effects on physiological functions that were expressed as, for example, altered metabolic activity or delayed reproductive and developmental stages in invertebrates. In plants, leaf damage, alterations in germination rates, growth and yield, or variations in the concentration of essential elements, for example, have been reported. However, these physiological responses and changes in plant morphology appear to be secondary to surface stimulation by the static EF or caused by concomitant parameters of the electrostatic environment. Furthermore, all of the included studies suffered from methodological flaws, which lowered credibility in the results. At field levels encountered from natural sources or HVDC lines (effects of static EF on other biological functions in invertebrates and plants. At far higher field levels (> 35kV/m), adverse effects on physiology and morphology, presumably caused by corona-action, appear to be more likely. Higher quality studies are needed to

  17. In vitro antimalarial activity of extracts of some plants from a biological reserve in Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Misael Chinchilla

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Treatment with the usual antimalarial drugs, have induced parasite resistance, reinforcing the need to finding natural antimalarial components that would be found on plants from the forest. Therefore, we decided to look for these components in Costa Rican plants from a protected forest area. Fresh and dry extracts of roots, bark, leaves, flowers and fruits of 25 plants from a biological reserve in Costa Rica, Reserva Biológica Alberto Manuel Brenes (REBAMB, were studied in vitro for the presence of substances with antimalarial activity. By studying the inhibition of P. berghei schizogony, we assessed the antimalarial activity of several plant extracts: Aphelandra aurantiaca, A. tridentata (Acanthaceae; Xanthosoma undipes (Araceae; Iriartea deltoidea (Arecaceae; Neurolaena lobata (Asteraceae; Senna papillosa, Pterocarpus hayessi, Lonchocarpus pentaphyllus (Fabaceae; Nectandra membranacea, Persea povedae, Cinamomum chavarrianum (Lauraceae; Hampea appendiculata (Malvaceae; Ruagea glabra, Guarea glabra (Meliaceae; Psidium guajava (Myrtaceae; Bocconia frutescens (Papaveraceae; Piper friedrichsthalii (Piperaceae; Clematis dioica (Ranunculaceae; Prunus annularis (Rosaceae; Siparuna thecaphora (Siparunaceae; Solanum arboreum, Witheringia solanácea (Solanaceae; Ticodendrum incognitum (Ticodendraceae; Heliocarpus appendiculatus (Tiliaceae and Myriocarpa longipes (Urticaceae. We used different parts of the plants as well as fresh and dried extracts for testing IC50. The solid content of the extracts ranged from 1-71.9μg/mL. The fresh extracts showed stronger activity than the dry ones. Since the plants showing the strongest antimalarial activity are very common in Central America, and some similar genera of these plants have shown positives results in South America, we considered important to present these findings for discussion. On the other hand, this is the first systematic study of this kind ever realized in a circumscribed and protected area of

  18. Making the right connections: Network biology and plant immune system dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maggie E. McCormack

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Network analysis has been a recent focus in biological sciences due to its ability to synthesize global visualizations of cellular processes and predict functions based on inferences from network properties. A protein–protein interaction network, or interactome, captures the emergent cellular states from gene regulation and environmental conditions. Given that proteins are involved in extensive local and systemic molecular interactions such as signaling and metabolism, understanding protein functions and interactions are essential for a systems view of biology. However, in plant sciences these network-based approaches to data integration have been few and far between due to limited data, especially protein–protein interaction data. In this review, we cover network construction from experimental data, network analysis based on topological properties, and finally we discuss advances in networks in plants and other organisms in a comparative approach. We focus on applications of network biology to discover the dynamics of host–pathogen interactions as these have potential agricultural uses in improving disease resistance in commercial crops.

  19. Protective Effect of Selected Medicinal Plants against Hydrogen Peroxide Induced Oxidative Damage on Biological Substrates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Namratha Pai Kotebagilu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Oxidative stress is developed due to susceptibility of biological substrates to oxidation by generation of free radicals. In degenerative diseases, oxidative stress level can be reduced by antioxidants which neutralize free radicals. Primary objective of this work was to screen four medicinal plants, namely, Andrographis paniculata, Costus speciosus, Canthium parviflorum, and Abrus precatorius, for their antioxidant property using two biological substrates—RBC and microsomes. The antioxidative ability of three solvent extracts, methanol (100% and 80% and aqueous leaf extracts, was studied at different concentrations by thiobarbituric acid reactive substances method using Fenton’s reagent to induce oxidation in the substrates. The polyphenol and flavonoid content were analyzed to relate with the observed antioxidant effect of the extracts. The phytochemical screening indicated the presence of flavonoids, polyphenols, tannins, and β-carotene in the samples. In microsomes, 80% methanol extract of Canthium and Costus and, in RBC, 80% methanol extract of Costus showed highest inhibition of oxidation and correlated well with the polyphenol and flavonoid content. From the results it can be concluded that antioxidants from medicinal plants are capable of inhibiting oxidation in biological systems, suggesting scope for their use as nutraceuticals.

  20. Success Continues: NASA-Developed Plant Health Measurement Technology is Becoming Big Business for Illinois Company

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-01-01

    Originally produced in 2001, sales of Spectrum Technologies' CM 1000 chlorophyll meter have now topped $290,000 on 140 units. Up-to-date sales figures for 2003 have shown an almost 50% increase over the combined sales totals of 2001 and 2002. The CM 1000 chlorophyll meter identifies the failing health of a plant based on the chlorophyll content of the plant up to 16 days before it is physically detectable by the human eye. Poor health, 'stress' in a plant, is a result of unfavorable growing conditions; lack of nutrients, insufficient water, disease or insect damage.

  1. Potential ecosystem service delivery by endemic plants in New Zealand vineyards: successes and prospects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morgan W. Shields

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Vineyards worldwide occupy over 7 million hectares and are typically virtual monocultures, with high and costly inputs of water and agro-chemicals. Understanding and enhancing ecosystem services can reduce inputs and their costs and help satisfy market demands for evidence of more sustainable practices. In this New Zealand work, low-growing, endemic plant species were evaluated for their potential benefits as Service Providing Units (SPUs or Ecosystem Service Providers (ESPs. The services provided were weed suppression, conservation of beneficial invertebrates, soil moisture retention and microbial activity. The potential Ecosystem Dis-services (EDS from the selected plant species by hosting the larvae of a key vine moth pest, the light-brown apple moth (Epiphyas postvittana, was also quantified. Questionnaires were used to evaluate winegrowers’ perceptions of the value of and problems associated with such endemic plant species in their vineyards. Growth and survival rates of the 14 plant species, in eight families, were evaluated, with Leptinella dioica (Asteraceae and Acaena inermis ‘purpurea’ (Rosaceae having the highest growth rates in terms of area covered and the highest survival rate after 12 months. All 14 plant species suppressed weeds, with Leptinella squalida, Geranium sessiliforum (Geraniaceae, Hebe chathamica (Plantaginaceae, Scleranthus uniflorus (Caryophyllaceae and L. dioica, each reducing weed cover by >95%. Plant species also differed in the diversity of arthropods that they supported, with the Shannon Wiener diversity index (H′ for these taxa ranging from 0 to 1.3. G. sessiliforum and Muehlenbeckia axillaris (Polygonaceae had the highest invertebrate diversity. Density of spiders was correlated with arthropod diversity and G. sessiliflorum and H. chathamica had the highest densities of these arthropods. Several plant species associated with higher soil moisture content than in control plots. The best performing species

  2. Chemical constituents and biological research on plants in the genus Curcuma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Wen; Wang, Sheng; Zhao, Wenwen; Wu, Chuanhong; Guo, Shuhui; Gao, Hongwei; Tao, Hongxun; Lu, Jinjian; Wang, Yitao; Chen, Xiuping

    2017-05-03

    Curcuma, a valuable genus in the family Zingiberaceae, includes approximately 110 species. These plants are native to Southeast Asia and are extensively cultivated in India, China, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Peru, Australia, and the West Indies. The plants have long been used in folk medicine to treat stomach ailments, stimulate digestion, and protect the digestive organs, including the intestines, stomach, and liver. In recent years, substantial progress has been achieved in investigations regarding the chemical and pharmacological properties, as well as in clinical trials of certain Curcuma species. This review comprehensively summarizes the current knowledge on the chemistry and briefly discusses the biological activities of Curcuma species. A total of 720 compounds, including 102 diphenylalkanoids, 19 phenylpropene derivatives, 529 terpenoids, 15 flavonoids, 7 steroids, 3 alkaloids, and 44 compounds of other types isolated or identified from 32 species, have been phytochemically investigated. The biological activities of plant extracts and pure compounds are classified into 15 groups in detail, with emphasis on anti-inflammatory and antitumor activities.

  3. Plant and microorganisms support media for electricity generation in biological fuel cells with living hydrophytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salinas-Juárez, María Guadalupe; Roquero, Pedro; Durán-Domínguez-de-Bazúa, María Del Carmen

    2016-12-01

    Plant support media may impact power output in a biological fuel cell with living plants, due to the physical and biochemical processes that take place in it. A material for support medium should provide the suitable conditions for the robust microbial growth and its metabolic activity, degrading organic matter and other substances; and, transferring electrons to the anode. To consider the implementation of this type of bio-electrochemical systems in constructed wetlands, this study analyzes the electrochemical behavior of biological fuel cells with the vegetal species Phragmites australis, by using two different support media: graphite granules and a volcanic slag, commonly known as tezontle (stone as light as hair, from the Aztec or Nahuatl language). Derived from the results, both, graphite and tezontle have the potential to be used as support medium for plants and microorganisms supporting a maximum power of 26.78mW/m(2) in graphite reactors. These reactors worked under mixed control: with ohmic and kinetic resistances of the same order of magnitude. Tezontle reactors operated under kinetic control with a high activation resistance supplying 9.73mW/m(2). These performances could be improved with stronger bacterial populations in the reactor, to ensure the rapid depletion of substrate.

  4. The Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant biological monitoring and abatement program for East Fork Poplar Creek

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loar, J.M.; Adams, S.M.; Allison, L.J.; Giddings, J.M.; McCarthy, J.F.; Southworth, G.R.; Smith, J.G.; Stewart, A.J. (Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (USA); Springborn Bionomics, Inc., Wareham, MA (USA); Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (USA))

    1989-10-01

    In May 1985, a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit was issued for the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant, a nuclear weapons components production facility located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and operated by Martin Marietta Energy Systems, Inc., for the US Department of Energy. As a condition of the permit, a Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) was developed to demonstrate that the effluent limitations established for the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant protect the classified uses of the receiving stream (East Fork Poplar Creek), in particular, the growth and propagation of fish and aquatic life, as designated by the Tennessee Department of Health and Environment. A second purpose for the BMAP is to document the ecological effects resulting from implementation of a water pollution control program that will include construction of nine new wastewater treatment facilities over the next 4 years. Because of the complex nature of the effluent discharged to East Fork Poplar Creek and the temporal and spatial variability in the composition of the effluent (i.e., temporal variability related to various pollution abatement measures that will be implemented over the next several years and spatial variability caused by pollutant inputs downstream of the Oak Ridge Y-12 Plant), a comprehensive, integrated approach to biological monitoring was developed for the BMAP. 39 refs., 5 figs., 8 tabs.

  5. Conservation biology of Chionodoxa lochiae and Scilla morrisii (Asparagaceae: Two priority bulbous plant species of the European Union in Cyprus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marios Andreou

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents data regarding conservation biology of Chionodoxa lochiae and Scilla morrisii; two threatened endemic plants of Cyprus, which are included as priority species in Annex II of the Habitats Directive. The population size and geographical distribution of the species were monitored for three years. C. lochiae was recorded in ten locations and S. morrisii was recorded in five locations. C. lochiae occurs in Pinus forests with/without Quercus alnifolia understory or in forest margins and riparian vegetation with Platanus orientalis. Favorable habitat of S. morrisii is the understory of Quercus infectoria stands and the Pistacia terebinthus-Quercus coccifera-Styrax officinalis shrubs. The distribution pattern of the species seems to follow habitat availability. Fecundity and Relative Reproductive Success of C. lochiae were stable and low, while in S. morrisii were constantly high. The lack of pollinators seems to be the main cause of the low sexual reproduction of C. lochiae. The germination strategy for both species is dependent on temperature. Some of the seeds are dormant and dormancy is broken by nitrates. The investigation of certain aspects of the biology of the two species yielded the information needed to identify the critical aspects affecting their survival and to propose sound conservation measures.

  6. Pollination biology of the urban populations of an ancient forest, spring ephemeral plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maciej A. Ziemiański

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Habitat fragmentation, caused by, among all, agriculture and urbanization, is one of the most important drivers of plant biodiversity decline worldwide. One of the signs of deteriorating zoogamous plant reproduction is pollen limitation, often associated with a decline in pollinator diversity and abundance. Various authors predict that the most vulnerable taxa are outbreeding plant species characterized by specialist pollination systems. We have, therefore, focused on self-incompatible Corydalis solida, an ancient forest, spring ephemeral plant, growing in three remnant urban populations in the city of Warsaw (Poland. Over two years, we checked for pollen limitation and recorded insect diversity and abundance for C. solida flowers. Our study populations composed of self-incompatible individuals were mainly visited by generalist pollinators, and produced more seeds when supplementally pollinated. Pollen limitation, however, was greater during 1 year with an early spring onset, when we observed a decline in floral visitors diversity and activity. This was probably an effect of phenological mismatch between plants and their pollinators, in this case, mostly social bees, i.e., over-wintered bumblebee queens and Apis mellifera. We conclude that for outbreeding zoogamous spring ephemerals, such as C. solida serviced by generalist pollinators, changing climatic conditions may override the effects of habitat fragmentation and influence their reproductive success.

  7. Discharge of pharmaceutical products (PPs) through a conventional biological sewage treatment plant: MECs vs PECs?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetsier, C M; Spinelli, S; Lin, L; Roig, B; Touraud, E

    2009-07-01

    Pharmaceuticals for human use are consumed in significant quantities and their occurrence in aquatic systems has been reported by a number of authors. In the context of environmental risk assessment, there is an increasing interest in evaluating the discharge of pharmaceutical products to surface waters through sewage treatment plants (STP). This case study was carried out on a conventional biological treatment plant (Alès, France) and focused on a set of eleven drugs representing the main therapeutic classes. Measured environmental concentrations (MECs) range from the low ng L(-1) to 1.5 microg L(-1) in effluent and up to few hundred ng L(-1) in receiving surface waters. There is a good agreement between MEC and predicted environmental concentration (PEC) values for seven of the eleven investigated drugs in STP effluent. There is not such a good match between PEC and MEC values in surface waters, and this highlights the limits of this approach, at the local scale.

  8. Genomic prediction unifies animal and plant breeding programs to form platforms for biological discovery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hickey, John M.; Chiurugwi, Tinashe; Mackay, Ian

    2017-01-01

    The rate of annual yield increases for major staple crops must more than double relative to current levels in order to feed a predicted global population of 9 billion by 2050. Controlled hybridization and selective breeding have been used for centuries to adapt plant and animal species for human...... that unifies breeding approaches, biological discovery, and tools and methods. Here we compare and contrast some animal and plant breeding approaches to make a case for bringing the two together through the application of genomic selection. We propose a strategy for the use of genomic selection as a unifying...... use. However, achieving higher, sustainable rates of improvement in yields in various species will require renewed genetic interventions and dramatic improvement of agricultural practices. Genomic prediction of breeding values has the potential to improve selection, reduce costs and provide a platform...

  9. Characterization of Radiation Fields in Biological Shields of Nuclear Power Plants for Assessing Concrete Degradationa

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Remec, Igor [ORNL; Rosseel, Thomas M [ORNL; Field, Kevin G [ORNL; Le Pape, Yann [ORNL

    2016-01-01

    Life extensions of nuclear power plants to 60 and potentially 80 years of operation have renewed interest in long-term material degradation. One material being considered is concrete, with a particular focus on radiation-induced effects. Based on the projected neutron fluence values (E > 0.1 MeV) in the concrete biological shields of the US pressurized water reactor fleet and the available data on radiation effects on concrete, some decrease in mechanical properties of concrete cannot be ruled out during extended operation beyond 60 years. An expansion of the irradiated concrete database and a reliable determination of relevant neutron fluence energy cutoff value are necessary to ensure reliable risk assessment for extended operation of nuclear power plants.

  10. Genomic prediction unifies animal and plant breeding programs to form platforms for biological discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hickey, John M; Chiurugwi, Tinashe; Mackay, Ian; Powell, Wayne

    2017-08-30

    The rate of annual yield increases for major staple crops must more than double relative to current levels in order to feed a predicted global population of 9 billion by 2050. Controlled hybridization and selective breeding have been used for centuries to adapt plant and animal species for human use. However, achieving higher, sustainable rates of improvement in yields in various species will require renewed genetic interventions and dramatic improvement of agricultural practices. Genomic prediction of breeding values has the potential to improve selection, reduce costs and provide a platform that unifies breeding approaches, biological discovery, and tools and methods. Here we compare and contrast some animal and plant breeding approaches to make a case for bringing the two together through the application of genomic selection. We propose a strategy for the use of genomic selection as a unifying approach to deliver innovative 'step changes' in the rate of genetic gain at scale.

  11. Endophytic colonization of tomato plants by the biological control agent Clonostachys rosea

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Høyer, Anna Kaja; Jørgensen, Hans Jørgen Lyngs; Amby, Daniel Buchvaldt

    -style. Clonostachys rosea occurs naturally world-wide and is capable of colonizing many different habitats. The fungus is primarily known as a versatile biological control agent. However, it has also been reported as a plant endophyte in, e.g., soybean, red clover and cacao. The C. rosea isolate IK726 efficiently...... in vermiculite or soil and grown at 24°C in a growth chamber. After two weeks, conidial suspensions of IK726 were applied to the roots either by root dipping or soil drenching around the stem and plants were subsequently incubated for at least two weeks before sampling for re-isolation of C. rosea. Stems were...... all culturable fungi. Therefore, root parts were washed only in water before incubation on the isolation medium and this revealed >50% colonization of the roots sections with C. rosea, irrespective of the inoculation method. In conclusion, we have shown for the first time that C. rosea can live...

  12. Asymmetric dispersal and colonization success of Amazonian plant-ants queens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emilio M Bruna

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The dispersal ability of queens is central to understanding ant life-history evolution, and plays a fundamental role in ant population and community dynamics, the maintenance of genetic diversity, and the spread of invasive ants. In tropical ecosystems, species from over 40 genera of ants establish colonies in the stems, hollow thorns, or leaf pouches of specialized plants. However, little is known about the relative dispersal ability of queens competing for access to the same host plants. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used empirical data and inverse modeling--a technique developed by plant ecologists to model seed dispersal--to quantify and compare the dispersal kernels of queens from three Amazonian ant species that compete for access to host-plants. We found that the modal colonization distance of queens varied 8-fold, with the generalist ant species (Crematogaster laevis having a greater modal distance than two specialists (Pheidole minutula, Azteca sp. that use the same host-plants. However, our results also suggest that queens of Azteca sp. have maximal distances that are four-sixteen times greater than those of its competitors. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We found large differences between ant species in both the modal and maximal distance ant queens disperse to find vacant seedlings used to found new colonies. These differences could result from interspecific differences in queen body size, and hence wing musculature, or because queens differ in their ability to identify potential host plants while in flight. Our results provide support for one of the necessary conditions underlying several of the hypothesized mechanisms promoting coexistence in tropical plant-ants. They also suggest that for some ant species limited dispersal capability could pose a significant barrier to the rescue of populations in isolated forest fragments. Finally, we demonstrate that inverse models parameterized with field data are an excellent means

  13. Asymmetric dispersal and colonization success of Amazonian plant-ants queens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruna, Emilio M; Izzo, Thiago J; Inouye, Brian D; Uriarte, Maria; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L

    2011-01-01

    The dispersal ability of queens is central to understanding ant life-history evolution, and plays a fundamental role in ant population and community dynamics, the maintenance of genetic diversity, and the spread of invasive ants. In tropical ecosystems, species from over 40 genera of ants establish colonies in the stems, hollow thorns, or leaf pouches of specialized plants. However, little is known about the relative dispersal ability of queens competing for access to the same host plants. We used empirical data and inverse modeling--a technique developed by plant ecologists to model seed dispersal--to quantify and compare the dispersal kernels of queens from three Amazonian ant species that compete for access to host-plants. We found that the modal colonization distance of queens varied 8-fold, with the generalist ant species (Crematogaster laevis) having a greater modal distance than two specialists (Pheidole minutula, Azteca sp.) that use the same host-plants. However, our results also suggest that queens of Azteca sp. have maximal distances that are four-sixteen times greater than those of its competitors. We found large differences between ant species in both the modal and maximal distance ant queens disperse to find vacant seedlings used to found new colonies. These differences could result from interspecific differences in queen body size, and hence wing musculature, or because queens differ in their ability to identify potential host plants while in flight. Our results provide support for one of the necessary conditions underlying several of the hypothesized mechanisms promoting coexistence in tropical plant-ants. They also suggest that for some ant species limited dispersal capability could pose a significant barrier to the rescue of populations in isolated forest fragments. Finally, we demonstrate that inverse models parameterized with field data are an excellent means of quantifying the dispersal of ant queens.

  14. A new mechanism of invader success: Exotic plant inhibits natural vegetation restoration by changing soil microbe community

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YU Xingjun; YU Dan; LU Zhijun; MA Keping

    2005-01-01

    Since the 1950s of the last century, the exotic plant, Eupatorium adenophorum, has spread rapidly across southwest China, damaging native ecosystems and causing great economic losses. We examined the pH, N, P, K, and organic matter concentrations, and the bacterial community character (by Biolog EcoPlateTM) in soils from sites heavily and lightly invaded by this exotic species. Also, soil from the lightly invaded site was treated with a water extract of E. adenophorum roots to examine the effect of the plant on soil properties. We grew three plant species, one native and two exotic, in pot experiment using soil from heavily invaded site to examine the effects of the soil on these plants growth. The soil analysis demonstrated that the pH, organic matter, total N, total P and total K in soils from the heavily invaded site were only slightly different from those of the lightly invaded site, but concentrations of NH4+, NO3? and available P and K in the heavily invaded site were greater than those in the lightly invaded site. The catabolic activity of soil bacterial community in the heavily invaded site was different from that in the lightly invaded site. The catabolic activity of bacterial community in soils treated by the water extract of E. adenophorum roots changed and became similar to that in soils from the heavily invaded site. The pot experiment showed that the exotic plants growth in heavily invaded soil were not different from in lightly invaded soil; however, the native plant biomass decreased dramatically when grown in soil from the heavily invaded site as compared to soil from the lightly invaded site; and the same phenomenon was found when any potential allelopathic effects by E. adenophorum were eliminated by added activated carbon to those soils. Difference in soil nutrient availability and allelopathy could not explain this phenomenon of the native plant in the soils from the heavily and lightly invaded sites. Changes observed in the soil bacterial

  15. Radiation degradation of alginate and some results of biological effect of degraded alginate on plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hien, N.Q.; Hai, L.; Luan, L.Q.; Hanh, T.T. [Nuclear Research Institute, Dalat (Viet Nam); Nagasawa, Naotsugu; Yoshii, Fumio; Makuuchi, Keizo; Kume, Tamikazu [Japan Atomic Energy Research Inst., Takasaki, Gunma (Japan). Takasaki Radiation Chemistry Research Establishment

    2000-03-01

    Radiation degradation yields (Gd) of alginate in aqueous solution with different concentration were determined by viscometry method. The relationship between Gd and the alginate concentration was found out as: Gd=33.5 x C{sup -0.68}, with C% (w/v) and dry alginate referred to C=100%. An empirical equation for preparing degraded alginate with the desired low viscometry average molecular weight (Mv) by radiation was proposed. Alginate extracted directly horn seaweed'Sagassum, degraded by radiation was used for field experiments and results of the biological effect on plants (tea, carrot, chrysanthemum) were presented. (author)

  16. Generation of biologically active multi-sialylated recombinant human EPOFc in plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Castilho

    Full Text Available Hyperglycosylated proteins are more stable, show increased serum half-life and less sensitivity to proteolysis compared to non-sialylated forms. This applies particularly to recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEPO. Recent progress in N-glycoengineering of non-mammalian expression hosts resulted in in vivo protein sialylation at great homogeneity. However the synthesis of multi-sialylated N-glycans is so far restricted to mammalian cells. Here we used a plant based expression system to accomplish multi-antennary protein sialylation. A human erythropoietin fusion protein (EPOFc was transiently expressed in Nicotiana benthamiana ΔXTFT, a glycosylation mutant that lacks plant specific N-glycan residues. cDNA of the hormone was co-delivered into plants with the necessary genes for (i branching (ii β1,4-galactosylation as well as for the (iii synthesis, transport and transfer of sialic acid. This resulted in the production of recombinant EPOFc carrying bi- tri- and tetra-sialylated complex N-glycans. The formation of this highly complex oligosaccharide structure required the coordinated expression of 11 human proteins acting in different subcellular compartments at different stages of the glycosylation pathway. In vitro receptor binding assays demonstrate the generation of biologically active molecules. We demonstrate the in planta synthesis of one of the most complex mammalian glycoforms pointing to an outstanding high degree of tolerance to changes in the glycosylation pathway in plants.

  17. Enzymatic degradation of endocrine-disrupting chemicals in aquatic plants and relations to biological Fenton reaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reis, A R; Sakakibara, Y

    2012-01-01

    In order to evaluate the removal performance of trace phenolic endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) by aquatic plants, batch and continuous experiments were conducted using floating and submerged plants. The EDCs used in this study were bisphenol A, 2,4-dichlorophenol, 4-tert-octylphenol, pentachlorophenol, and nonylphenol. The feed concentration of each EDC was set at 100 μg/L. Continuous experiments showed that every EDC except pentachlorophenol was efficiently removed by different aquatic plants through the following reaction, catalyzed by peroxidases: EDCs+H(2)O(2)→Products+H(2)O(2). Peroxidases were able to remove phenolic EDCs in the presence of H(2)O(2) over a wide pH range (from 3 to 9). Histochemical localization of peroxidases showed that they were located in every part of the root cells, while highly concentrated zones were observed in the epidermis and in the vascular tissues. Although pentachlorophenol was not removed in the continuous treatment, it was rapidly removed by different aquatic plants when Fe(2+) was added, and this removal occurred simultaneously with the consumption of endogenous H(2)O(2). These results demonstrated the occurrence of a biological Fenton reaction and the importance of H(2)O(2) as a key endogenous substance in the treatment of EDCs and refractory toxic pollutants.

  18. MetNet Online: a novel integrated resource for plant systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sucaet Yves

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plants are important as foods, pharmaceuticals, biorenewable chemicals, fuel resources, bioremediation tools and general tools for recombinant technology. The study of plant biological pathways is advanced by easy access to integrated data sources. Today, various plant data sources are scattered throughout the web, making it increasingly complicated to build comprehensive datasets. Results MetNet Online is a web-based portal that provides access to a regulatory and metabolic plant pathway database. The database and portal integrate Arabidopsis, soybean (Glycine max and grapevine (Vitis vinifera data. Pathways are enriched with known or predicted information on sub cellular location. MetNet Online enables pathways, interactions and entities to be browsed or searched by multiple categories such as sub cellular compartment, pathway ontology, and GO term. In addition to this, the “My MetNet” feature allows registered users to bookmark content and track, import and export customized lists of entities. Users can also construct custom networks using existing pathways and/or interactions as building blocks. Conclusion The site can be reached at http://www.metnetonline.org. Extensive video tutorials on how to use the site are available through http://www.metnetonline.org/tutorial/.

  19. Review: Biological fertilization and its effect on medicinal and aromatic plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    KHALID ALI KHALID

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Khalid KA. 2012. Review: Biological fertilization and its effect on medicinal and aromatic plants. Nusantara Bioscience 4: 124-133. The need of increase food production in the most of developing countries becomes an ultimate goal to meet the dramatic expansion of their population. However, this is also associated many cases with a reduction of the areas of arable land which leaves no opinion for farmers but to increase the yield per unit area through the use of improved the crop varieties, irrigation and fertilization. The major problem facing the farmer is that he cannot afford the cost of these goods, particularly that of chemical fertilizers. Moreover, in countries where fertilizer production relies on imported raw materials, the costs are even higher for farmer and for the country. Besides this, chemical fertilizers production and utilization are considered as air, soil and water polluting operations. The utilization of bio-fertilizers is considered today by many scientists as a promising alternative, particularly for developing countries. Bio-fertilization is generally based on altering the rhizosphere flora, by seed or soil inoculation with certain organisms, capable of inducing beneficial effects on a compatible host. Bio-fertilizers mainly comprise nitrogen fixes (Rhizobium, Azotobacter, Azospirellum, Azolla or blue green algae, phosphate dissolvers or vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizas and silicate bacteria. These organisms may affect their host plant by one or more mechanisms such as nitrogen fixation, production of growth promoting substances or organic acids, enhancing nutrient uptake or protection against plant pathogens. Growth characters, yield, essential oil and its constituents, fixed oil, carbohydrates, soluble sugars and nutrients contents of medicinal and aromatic plants were significantly affected by adding the biological fertilizers compared with recommended chemical fertilizers.

  20. The important of living botanical collections for plant biology and the “next generation” of evo-devo research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael Dosmann; Andrew Groover

    2012-01-01

    Living botanical collections include germplasm repositories, long-term experimental plantings, and botanical gardens. We present here a series of vignettes to illustrate the central role that living collections have played in plant biology research, including evo-devo research. Looking towards the future, living collections will become increasingly important in support...

  1. Time since introduction, seed mass, and genome size predict successful invaders among the cultivated vascular plants of Hawaii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Paul Schmidt

    Full Text Available Extensive economic and environmental damage has been caused by invasive exotic plant species in many ecosystems worldwide. Many comparative studies have therefore attempted to predict, from biological traits, which species among the pool of naturalized non-natives become invasive. However, few studies have investigated which species establish and/or become pests from the larger pool of introduced species and controlled for time since introduction. Here we present results from a study aimed at quantifying predicting three classes of invasive species cultivated in Hawaii. Of 7,866 ornamental species cultivated in Hawaii between 1840 and 1999, 420 (5.3% species naturalized, 141 (1.8% have been classified as weeds, and 39 (0.5% were listed by the state of Hawaii as noxious. Of the 815 species introduced >80 years ago, 253 (31% have naturalized, 90 (11% are classed as weeds, and 22 (3% as noxious by the state of Hawaii. Using boosted regression trees we classified each group with nearly 90% accuracy, despite incompleteness of data and the low proportion of naturalized or pest species. Key biological predictors were seed mass and highest chromosome number standardized by genus which, when data on residence time was removed, were able to predict all three groups with 76-82% accuracy. We conclude that, when focused on a single region, screening for potential weeds or noxious plants based on a small set of biological traits can be achieved with sufficient accuracy for policy and management purposes.

  2. Optimum Vegetation Conditions for Successful Establishment of Planted Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus L.

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    Douglas G. Pitt

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The 10th-growing season performance of planted eastern white pine (Pinus strobus L. seedlings was evaluated in response to herbaceous and woody vegetation control treatments within a clearcut and two variants of the uniform shelterwood regeneration system (single vs. multiple future removal cuts. Herbaceous vegetation control involved the suppression of grasses, forbs, ferns and low shrubs for the first 2 or 4 growing seasons after planting. Deciduous woody vegetation control treatments, conducted in combination with the herbaceous treatments within a response-surface design, involved the permanent removal of all tall shrubs and deciduous trees at the time of planting, at the end of the 2nd or 5th growing seasons, or not at all. In general, the average size of planted pine was related positively to the duration of herbaceous vegetation control and negatively to delays in woody control. White pine weevil (Pissodes strobi Peck altered these trends, reducing the height of pine on plots with little or no overtopping deciduous woody vegetation or mature tree cover. Where natural pine regeneration occurred on these plots, growth was similar but subordinate to the planted pine. Data from the three sites indicate that at least 60% of planted pine may be expected to reach an age-10 height target of 2.5 m when overtopping cover (residual overstory + regenerating deciduous is managed at approximately 65% ± 10%, and total herbaceous cover is suppressed to levels not exceeding 50% in the first five years. On productive sites, this combination may be difficult to achieve in a clearcut, and requires fairly rigorous vegetation management in shelterwood regeneration systems. Currently, synthetic herbicides offer the only affordable and effective means of achieving such vegetation control.

  3. Biological Invasion Influences the Outcome of Plant-Soil Feedback in the Invasive Plant Species from the Brazilian Semi-arid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Souza, Tancredo Augusto Feitosa; de Andrade, Leonaldo Alves; Freitas, Helena; da Silva Sandim, Aline

    2017-05-30

    Plant-soil feedback is recognized as the mutual interaction between plants and soil microorganisms, but its role on the biological invasion of the Brazilian tropical seasonal dry forest by invasive plants still remains unclear. Here, we analyzed and compared the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) communities and soil characteristics from the root zone of invasive and native plants, and tested how these AMF communities affect the development of four invasive plant species (Cryptostegia madagascariensis, Parkinsonia aculeata, Prosopis juliflora, and Sesbania virgata). Our field sampling revealed that AMF diversity and frequency of the Order Diversisporales were positively correlated with the root zone of the native plants, whereas AMF dominance and frequency of the Order Glomerales were positively correlated with the root zone of invasive plants. We grew the invasive plants in soil inoculated with AMF species from the root zone of invasive (I changed) and native (I unaltered) plant species. We also performed a third treatment with sterilized soil inoculum (control). We examined the effects of these three AMF inoculums on plant dry biomass, root colonization, plant phosphorous concentration, and plant responsiveness to mycorrhizas. We found that I unaltered and I changed promoted the growth of all invasive plants and led to a higher plant dry biomass, mycorrhizal colonization, and P uptake than control, but I changed showed better results on these variables than I unaltered. For plant responsiveness to mycorrhizas and fungal inoculum effect on plant P concentration, we found positive feedback between changed-AMF community (I changed) and three of the studied invasive plants: C. madagascariensis, P. aculeata, and S. virgata.

  4. A valued Indian medicinal plant – Begonia malabarica Lam. : Successful plant regeneration through various explants and field performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sevanan Rajeshkumar

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available A cost-effective and efficient protocol has been described in the present work for large-scale and rapid in vitro propagation of a valuable medicinal herb Begonia malabarica Lam. (Begoniaceae by shoot auxillary-bud proliferation and organogenesis on MS medium supplemented with 6-benzylaminopurine (BA; 0.0-8.8 mg/l and indole-3-acetic acid (IAA; 0.0-2.88 mg/l at different concentrations, either alone or in combinations. Initiation of callus formation from the base of the leaf lamina was observed on MS supplemented with BA, IAA and adenine sulphate. Root induction on shoots was achieved on full strength MS with IAA/ indole-3-butyric acid (IBA at different concentrations. MS medium with 4.4 mg/l BA and 1.4 mg/l IAA elicited the maximum number of shoots (10 multiple shoots from nodal explants. Leaf-based callus differentiated into more than 28 shoots on MS with 150 mg/l adenine sulphate. The regenerated shoots were rooted on MS with 1.2 mg/l IBA within ten days. Almost 95% of the rooted shoots survived hardening when transferred to the field. The regenerated plants did not show any morphological change and variation in levels of secondary metabolites when compared with the mother stock. Thus, a reproduction of B. malabarica was established through nodal and leaf explants. This protocol can be exploited for conservation and commercial propagation of this medical plant in the Indian subcontinent and might be useful for genetic improvement programs.

  5. The Importance of Microtopography and Nurse Canopy for Successful Restoration Planting of the Slow-Growing Conifer Pilgerodendron uviferum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jürgen Bauhus

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have shown that, owing to a lack of seed trees, the natural rate of recovery of fire-disturbed bog forests previously dominated by the endemic and endangered conifer Pilgerodendron uviferum (D. Don Florin is extremely slow. Hence, increasing the number of seed trees in the landscape through restoration planting could remove the principal biotic filter, limiting recovery of these forests. Here, we analyzed how the success of restoration plantings may be improved through the choice or manipulation of microsites in P. uviferum forests on Chiloé Island in North Patagonia. For this purpose, we manipulated microtopography in water-logged sites in bogs (mounds, flat terrain, mineral soil and changed canopy conditions (gaps, semi-open, closed canopy in upland sites with better drainage. In bogs, there was no significant effect of microtopography on growth and survival of P. uviferum plantings. However, fluorescence measurements indicated lower stress in seedlings established on mounds. Seedlings in upland areas established beneath a nurse canopy had lower mortality and higher relative shoot growth, foliar nutrients, photosynthetic light use efficiency and chlorophyll fluorescence values than those planted in the open. This indicates that seedlings of the slow growing P. uviferum can tolerate extremely wet conditions, yet suffer from stress when grown in the open. Here, the removal of canopy appeared to have also removed or reduced mycorrhizal networks for seedlings, leading to poorer nutrition and growth. Based on these results, recommendations for restoration plantings in highly degraded P. uviferum forests are presented.

  6. Alien plants introduced by different pathways differ in invasion success: unintentional introductions as a threat to natural areas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petr Pyšek

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Understanding the dimensions of pathways of introduction of alien plants is important for regulating species invasions, but how particular pathways differ in terms of post-invasion success of species they deliver has never been rigorously tested. We asked whether invasion status, distribution and habitat range of 1,007 alien plant species introduced after 1500 A.D. to the Czech Republic differ among four basic pathways of introduction recognized for plants. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Pathways introducing alien species deliberately as commodities (direct release into the wild; escape from cultivation result in easier naturalization and invasion than pathways of unintentional introduction (contaminant of a commodity; stowaway arriving without association with it. The proportion of naturalized and invasive species among all introductions delivered by a particular pathway decreases with a decreasing level of direct assistance from humans associated with that pathway, from release and escape to contaminant and stowaway. However, those species that are introduced via unintentional pathways and become invasive are as widely distributed as deliberately introduced species, and those introduced as contaminants invade an even wider range of seminatural habitats. CONCLUSIONS: Pathways associated with deliberate species introductions with commodities and pathways whereby species are unintentionally introduced are contrasting modes of introductions in terms of invasion success. However, various measures of the outcome of the invasion process, in terms of species' invasion success, need to be considered to accurately evaluate the role of and threat imposed by individual pathways. By employing various measures we show that invasions by unintentionally introduced plant species need to be considered by management as seriously as those introduced by horticulture, because they invade a wide range of seminatural habitats, hence representing even a greater

  7. THE INTERACTION OF HABITAT FRAGMENTATION, PLANT, AND SMALL MAMMAL SUCCESSION IN AN OLD FIELD

    Science.gov (United States)

    We compared the density and spatial distribution of four small mammal species (Microtus ochrogaster, Peromyscus maniculatus, Sigmodon hispidus, and P. luecopus) along with general measures of an old field plant community across two successional phases (1984-1986 and 1994-1996) of...

  8. Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program for Mitchell Branch

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loar, J.M.; Adams, S.M.; Kszos, L.A.; Ryon, M.G.; Smith, J.G.; Southworth, G.R.; Stewart, A.J.

    1992-01-01

    A proposed Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program (BMAP) for the Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant (ORGDP; currently the Oak Ridge K-25 Site) was prepared in December 1986, as required by the modified National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit that was issued on September 11, 1986. The effluent discharges to Mitchell Branch are complex, consisting of trace elements, organic chemicals, and radionuclides in addition to various conventional pollutants. Moreover, the composition of these effluent streams will be changing over time as various pollution abatement measures are implemented over the next several years. Although contaminant inputs to the stream originate primarily as point sources from existing plant operations, area sources, such as the classified burial grounds and the K-1407-C holding pond, can not be eliminated as potential sources of contaminants. The proposed BMAP consists of four tasks. These tasks include (1) ambient toxicity testing, (2) bioaccumulation studies, (3) biological indicator studies, and (4) ecological surveys of the benthic invertebrate and fish communities. BMAP will determine whether the effluent limits established for ORGDP protect the designated use of the receiving stream (Mitchell Branch) for growth and propagation of fish and aquatic life. Another objective of the program is to document the ecological effects resulting from various pollution abatement projects, such as the Central Neutralization Facility.

  9. Plant biology: From on-campus to on-line development and implementation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, Lucy K.

    The lecture content of the Plant Biology class for non-majors was transformed from a traditional on-campus lecture to an asynchronous website that could be used both as a stand-alone course and as an adjunct to the on campus course sections. In addition, an interactive, on-line website with home laboratory experiments was developed and implemented by the Plant Biology Department in collaboration with design specialists from the Information Technology and Instructional Support Department of the Arizona State University. The 259-page lecture website included 134 interactive animations, as well as 11 videos. The lab website included 176 pages, with 187 graphics and 36 separate animations. Convenience was identified by most students as the key benefit of taking the course on-line. Website construction was rated highly by all of the students; however, website audio was problematic for 50% of them; video, for 71%. Students, staff, and faculty all agreed that to benefit fully from the website, adequate hardware, software, and internet connection speed were vital. Challenges with the web-based lab were either technological (inadequate equipment or skills), logistical (dissatisfaction with having to pick up home lab kits from campus), or motivational (student survey responses added to the growing literature that suggests that mature, focused, self-motivated students benefit more from distance learning).

  10. Optimal Plant Carbon Allocation Implies a Biological Control on Nitrogen Availability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prentice, I. C.; Stocker, B. D.

    2015-12-01

    The degree to which nitrogen availability limits the terrestrial C sink under rising CO2 is a key uncertainty in carbon cycle and climate change projections. Results from ecosystem manipulation studies and meta-analyses suggest that plant C allocation to roots adjusts dynamically under varying degrees of nitrogen availability and other soil fertility parameters. In addition, the ratio of biomass production to GPP appears to decline under nutrient scarcity. This reflects increasing plant C exudation into the soil (Cex) with decreasing nutrient availability. Cex is consumed by an array of soil organisms and may imply an improvement of nutrient availability to the plant. Thus, N availability is under biological control, but incurs a C cost. In spite of clear observational support, this concept is left unaccounted for in Earth system models. We develop a model for the coupled cycles of C and N in terrestrial ecosystems to explore optimal plant C allocation under rising CO2 and its implications for the ecosystem C balance. The model follows a balanced growth approach, accounting for the trade-offs between leaf versus root growth and Cex in balancing C fixation and N uptake. We assume that Cex is proportional to root mass, and that the ratio of N uptake (Nup) to Cex is proportional to inorganic N concentration in the soil solution. We further assume that Cex is consumed by N2-fixing processes if the ratio of Nup:Cex falls below the inverse of the C cost of N2-fixation. Our analysis thereby accounts for the feedbacks between ecosystem C and N cycling and stoichiometry. We address the question of how the plant C economy will adjust under rising atmospheric CO2 and what this implies for the ecosystem C balance and the degree of N limitation.

  11. Weaving Together Space Biology and the Human Research Program: Selecting Crops and Manipulating Plant Physiology to Produce High Quality Food for ISS Astronauts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massa, Gioia; Hummerick, Mary; Douglas, Grace; Wheeler, Raymond

    2015-01-01

    Researchers from the Human Research Program (HRP) have teamed up with plant biologists at KSC to explore the potential for plant growth and food production on the international space station (ISS) and future exploration missions. KSC Space Biology (SB) brings a history of plant and plant-microbial interaction research for station and for future bioregenerative life support systems. JSC HRP brings expertise in Advanced Food Technology (AFT), Advanced Environmental Health (AEH), and Behavioral Health and Performance (BHP). The Veggie plant growth hardware on the ISS is the platform that first drove these interactions. As we prepared for the VEG-01 validation test of Veggie, we engaged with BHP to explore questions that could be asked of the crew that would contribute both to plant and to behavioral health research. AFT, AEH and BHP stakeholders were engaged immediately after the return of the Veggie flight samples of space-grown lettuce, and this team worked with the JSC human medical offices to gain approvals for crew consumption of the lettuce on ISS. As we progressed with Veggie testing we began performing crop selection studies for Veggie that were initiated through AFT. These studies consisted of testing and down selecting leafy greens, dwarf tomatoes, and dwarf pepper crops based on characteristics of plant growth and nutritional levels evaluated at KSC, and organoleptic quality evaluated at JSCs Sensory Analysis lab. This work has led to a successful collaborative proposal to the International Life Sciences Research Announcement for a jointly funded HRP-SB investigation of the impacts of light quality and fertilizer on salad crop productivity, nutrition, and flavor in Veggie on the ISS. With this work, and potentially with other pending joint projects, we will continue the synergistic research that will advance the space biology knowledge base, help close gaps in the human research roadmap, and enable humans to venture out to Mars and beyond.

  12. Tactics for male reproductive success in plants: contrasting insights of sex allocation theory and pollen presentation theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomson, James D

    2006-08-01

    The basic tenet of sex allocation theory is that an organism's reproductive success, through either male or female function, can be represented as a sex-specific, monotonic, increasing function of the organism's investment of resources in that function. The shapes of these curves determine what patterns of resource allocation can be evolutionarily stable. Although SA theory has stimulated creative thinking about plant sexual tactics, quantifying the shapes of male and female gain curves has proven so difficult that other approaches must be considered. I contrast sex allocation theory to a different, emerging viewpoint, pollen presentation theory (PPT), which attempts to address variation in reproductive success by measuring and modeling the quantitative fates of pollen grains. Models suggest that RS through male function depends heavily on the packaging and gradual dispensing of pollen to pollinators, even with the amount of investment held constant. Many plants do deploy pollen gradually, through morphological and "behavioral" mechanisms that range from obvious to subtle. They may thereby influence many aspects of the evolution of sexual modes in plants, including transitions between dioecy and cosexuality. After reviewing the main implications of the models, I discuss recent work aimed at testing some key assumptions and predictions by functional and comparative studies in the genus Penstemon. Species of Penstemon conform to PPT predictions that bee-adapted flowers will restrict per-visit pollen availability more than hummingbird-adapted flowers.

  13. Environmental parameters of the Tennessee River in Alabama. 2: Physical, chemical, and biological parameters. [biological and chemical effects of thermal pollution from nuclear power plants on water quality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosing, L. M.

    1976-01-01

    Physical, chemical and biological water quality data from five sites in the Tennessee River, two in Guntersville Reservoir and three in Wheeler Reservoir were correlated with climatological data for three annual cycles. Two of the annual cycles are for the years prior to the Browns Ferry Nuclear Power Plant operations and one is for the first 14 months of Plant operations. A comparison of the results of the annual cycles indicates that two distinct physical conditions in the reservoirs occur, one during the warm months when the reservoirs are at capacity and one during the colder winter months when the reservoirs have been drawn-down for water storage during the rainy months and for weed control. The wide variations of physical and chemical parameters to which the biological organisms are subjected on an annual basis control the biological organisms and their population levels. A comparison of the parameters of the site below the Power plant indicates that the heated effluent from the plant operating with two of the three reactors has not had any effect on the organisms at this site. Recommendations given include the development of prediction mathematical models (statistical analysis) for the physical and chemical parameters under specific climatological conditions which affect biological organisms. Tabulated data of chemical analysis of water and organism populations studied is given.

  14. Spectroscopic and Chromatographic Characterization of Wastewater Organic Matter from a Biological Treatment Plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min-Hye Park

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Spectroscopic and chromatographic changes in dissolved organic matter (DOM characteristics of influent and treated sewage were investigated for a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP with a biological advanced process. Refractory DOM (R-DOM was defined as the dissolved organic carbon concentrations of the samples after 28-day incubation for this study. Specific UV absorbance (SUVA, hydrophobicity, synchronous fluorescence spectra and molecular weight (MW distributions were selected as DOM characteristics. The percent distribution of R-DOM for the effluent was much higher than that of the influent, indicating that biodegradable DOM was selectively removed during the process. Comparison of the influent versus the effluent sewage revealed that SUVA, fulvic-like fluorescence (FLF, humic-like fluorescence (HLF, the apparent MW values were enhanced during the treatment. This suggests that more aromatic and humic-like compounds were enriched during the biological process. No significant difference in the DOM characteristics was observed between the original effluent (i.e., prior to the incubation and the influent sewage after the incubation. This result suggests that the major changes in wastewater DOM characteristics occurring during the biological advanced process were similar to those for simple microbial incubation.

  15. An evaluation of two hands-on lab styles for plant biodiversity in undergraduate biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basey, John M; Maines, Anastasia P; Francis, Clinton D; Melbourne, Brett

    2014-01-01

    We compared learning cycle and expository formats for teaching about plant biodiversity in an inquiry-oriented university biology lab class (n = 465). Both formats had preparatory lab activities, a hands-on lab, and a postlab with reflection and argumentation. Learning was assessed with a lab report, a practical quiz in lab, and a multiple-choice exam in the concurrent lecture. Attitudes toward biology and treatments were also assessed. We used linear mixed-effect models to determine impacts of lab style on lower-order cognition (LO) and higher-order cognition (HO) based on Bloom's taxonomy. Relative to the expository treatment, the learning cycle treatment had a positive effect on HO and a negative effect on LO included in lab reports; a positive effect on transfer of LO from the lab report to the quiz; negative impacts on LO quiz performance and on attitudes toward the lab; and a higher degree of perceived difficulty. The learning cycle treatment had no influence on transfer of HO from lab report to quiz or exam; quiz performance on HO questions; exam performance on LO and HO questions; and attitudes toward biology as a science. The importance of LO as a foundation for HO relative to these lab styles is addressed.

  16. Reduced representation sequencing: a success in maize and a promise for other plant genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barbazuk, W Brad; Bedell, Joseph A; Rabinowicz, Pablo D

    2005-08-01

    Plant, and particularly cereal genomes, are challenging to sequence due to their large size and high repetitive DNA content. Gene-enrichment strategies are alternative or complementary approaches to complete genome sequencing that yield, rapidly and inexpensively, useful sequence data from large and complex genomes. The maize genome is large (2.7 Gbp) and contains large amounts of conserved repetitive elements. Furthermore, the high allelic diversity found between maize inbred lines may necessitate sequencing several inbred lines in order to recover the maize "gene pool". Two gene-enrichment approaches, methylation filtration (MF) and high C(o)t (HC) sequencing have been tested in maize and their ability to sample the gene space has been examined. Combined with other genomic sequencing strategies, gene-enriched genomic sequencing is a practical way to examine the maize gene pool, to order and orient the genic sequences on the genome, and to enable investigation of gene content of other complex plant genomes.

  17. Biological effects of activation products and other chemicals released from fusion power plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Strand, J.A.; Poston, T.M.

    1976-09-01

    Literature reviews indicate that existing information is incomplete, often contradictory, and of questionable value for the prediction and assessment of ultimate impact from fusion-associated activation products and other chemical releases. It is still uncertain which structural materials will be used in the blanket and first wall of fusion power plants. However, niobium, vanadium, vanadium-chromium alloy, vanadium-titanium alloy, sintered aluminum product, and stainless steel have been suggested. The activation products of principal concern will be the longer-lived isotopes of /sup 26/Al, /sup 49/V, /sup 51/Cr, /sup 54/Mn, /sup 55/Fe, /sup 58/Co, /sup 60/Co, /sup 93/Nb, and /sup 94/Nb. Lithium released to the environment either during the mining cycle, from power plant operation or accident, may be in the form of a number of compound types varying in solubility and affinity for biological organisms. The effects of a severe liquid metal fire or explosion involving Na or K will vary according to inherent abiotic and biotic features of the affected site. Saline, saline-alkaline, and sodic soils of arid lands would be particularly susceptible to alkaline stress. Beryllium released to the environment during the mining cycle or reactor accident situation could be in the form of a number of compound types. Adverse effects to aquatic species from routine chemical releases (biocides, corrosion inhibitors, dissolution products) may occur in the discharge of both fission and fusion power plant designs.

  18. MIPS Arabidopsis thaliana Database (MAtDB): an integrated biological knowledge resource for plant genomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoof, Heiko; Ernst, Rebecca; Nazarov, Vladimir; Pfeifer, Lukas; Mewes, Hans-Werner; Mayer, Klaus F X

    2004-01-01

    Arabidopsis thaliana is the most widely studied model plant. Functional genomics is intensively underway in many laboratories worldwide. Beyond the basic annotation of the primary sequence data, the annotated genetic elements of Arabidopsis must be linked to diverse biological data and higher order information such as metabolic or regulatory pathways. The MIPS Arabidopsis thaliana database MAtDB aims to provide a comprehensive resource for Arabidopsis as a genome model that serves as a primary reference for research in plants and is suitable for transfer of knowledge to other plants, especially crops. The genome sequence as a common backbone serves as a scaffold for the integration of data, while, in a complementary effort, these data are enhanced through the application of state-of-the-art bioinformatics tools. This information is visualized on a genome-wide and a gene-by-gene basis with access both for web users and applications. This report updates the information given in a previous report and provides an outlook on further developments. The MAtDB web interface can be accessed at http://mips.gsf.de/proj/thal/db.

  19. Metabolic versatility in full-scale wastewater treatment plants performing enhanced biological phosphorus removal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanham, Ana B; Oehmen, Adrian; Saunders, Aaron M; Carvalho, Gilda; Nielsen, Per H; Reis, Maria A M

    2013-12-01

    This study analysed the enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR) microbial community and metabolic performance of five full-scale EBPR systems by using fluorescence in situ hybridisation combined with off-line batch tests fed with acetate under anaerobic-aerobic conditions. The phosphorus accumulating organisms (PAOs) in all systems were stable and showed little variability between each plant, while glycogen accumulating organisms (GAOs) were present in two of the plants. The metabolic activity of each sludge showed the frequent involvement of the anaerobic tricarboxylic acid cycle (TCA) in PAO metabolism for the anaerobic generation of reducing equivalents, in addition to the more frequently reported glycolysis pathway. Metabolic variability in the use of the two pathways was also observed, between different systems and in the same system over time. The metabolic dynamics was linked to the availability of glycogen, where a higher utilisation of the glycolysis pathway was observed in the two systems employing side-stream hydrolysis, and the TCA cycle was more active in the A(2)O systems. Full-scale plants that showed higher glycolysis activity also exhibited superior P removal performance, suggesting that promotion of the glycolysis pathway over the TCA cycle could be beneficial towards the optimisation of EBPR systems.

  20. G Quadruplex in Plants: A Ubiquitous Regulatory Element and Its Biological Relevance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vikas Yadav

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available G quadruplexes (G4 are higher-order DNA and RNA secondary structures formed by G-rich sequences that are built around tetrads of hydrogen-bonded guanine bases. Potential G4 quadruplex sequences have been identified in G-rich eukaryotic non-telomeric and telomeric genomic regions. Upon function, G4 formation is known to involve in chromatin remodeling, gene regulation and has been associated with genomic instability, genetic diseases and cancer progression. The natural role and biological validation of G4 structures is starting to be explored, and is of particular interest for the therapeutic interventions for human diseases. However, the existence and physiological role of G4 DNA and G4 RNA in plants species have not been much investigated yet and therefore, is of great interest for the development of improved crop varieties for sustainable agriculture. In this context, several recent studies suggests that these highly diverse G4 structures in plants can be employed to regulate expression of genes involved in several pathophysiological conditions including stress response to biotic and abiotic stresses as well as DNA damage. In the current review, we summarize the recent findings regarding the emerging functional significance of G4 structures in plants and discuss their potential value in the development of improved crop varieties.

  1. Considering scientific application of RHS biological scale for plant varieties identification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Н. В. Лещук

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Living organisms in nature harmonize through the medium of light spectrum and sound vibration. Therefore the issue of applying the scientific customization of color scale to identification of vegetative and generative parts of plans remain up to date, namely: identification if states of expression for hues of green color of stem and foliage, variability of color range for petals of follower corolla, coloration of pericarp and seed etc. A scientific rationale is provided to the application of RHS during the qualifying examination of plant varieties by way of identification – morphological description. This also disclosed the application of RHS to visualize various qualitative and pseudo-qualitative morphological characteristics of vegetative and generative parts of plants. The performed chronological monitoring of stag-by-stage introduction of standardization of living biological items enabled to establish a customized gradation of colors and their hues expression. Ensuring completeness of the morphological code formula for plant varieties requires compulsory identification of their colors and hues, as the Guidelines for the conduct of test on distinctness, uniformity and stability so provide for relevant botanical taxon.

  2. Biological concentration of radionuclides in plants and animals after Chernobyl catastrophe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nakajima, Hiroo; Ryo, Haruko; Nomura, Taisei [Osaka Univ., Suita (Japan). Graduate School of Medicine; Yamaguchi, Yoshiaki; Saito, Tadashi; Yeliseeva, K.G.; Piskunov, V.S.; Krupnova, E.V.; Voitovich, A.M.

    2000-07-01

    The {sup 137}Cs radioactivity and its distribution in plants (trees, mushrooms, berries, duckweed, and etc.) and animals (insects, mice, fish, and etc.) were measured in contaminated areas of southern Belarus, which was highly polluted by radionuclides as a result of the Chernobyl catastrophe in Ukraine in 1986. Gamma spectrometry of {sup 137}Cs was carried out, and a computer graphic imaging analysis was performed to visualize the distribution of radioactive nuclides in the organisms. The specimen was placed on the imaging plate, the plate was exposed for 20 h. High {sup 137}Cs radioactivity was detected in both the animals (mice, moles, dragonflies, grasshoppers, and fish) and the plants (pine trees, oak leaves, mushrooms, berries, duckweed). The {sup 137}Cs radioactivity in the organisms was proportional to the radioactivity in the soil. Assessment of its distribution showed that {sup 137}Cs was highly concentrated in muscle, but there were no substantial differences in {sup 137}Cs radioactivity according to organ or species. Computer graphic imaging analysis clearly revealed non-uniform distribution of {sup 137}Cs radioactivity in the animals and plants. In pine trees, the highest level of radioactivity was found in the bark, and it decreased toward the center of the tree. In conclusion, the authors suggest that self-cleaning of the soil will require a very long time and that the biological concentrations will persist and increase in higher animals for a long time, resulting in accumulation of both external and internal radiation exposure in animals. (K.H.)

  3. Pathogen and biological contamination management in plant tissue culture: phytopathogens, vitro pathogens, and vitro pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassells, Alan C

    2012-01-01

    The ability to establish and grow plant cell, organ, and tissue cultures has been widely exploited for basic and applied research, and for the commercial production of plants (micro-propagation). Regardless of whether the application is for research or commerce, it is essential that the cultures be established in vitro free of biological contamination and be maintained as aseptic cultures during manipulation, growth, and storage. The risks from microbial contamination are spurious experimental results due to the effects of latent contaminants or losses of valuable experimental or commercial cultures. Much of the emphasis in culture contamination management historically focussed on the elimination of phytopathogens and the maintenance of cultures free from laboratory contamination by environmental bacteria, fungi (collectively referred to as "vitro pathogens", i.e. pathogens or environmental micro-organisms which cause culture losses), and micro-arthropods ("vitro pests"). Microbial contamination of plant tissue cultures is due to the high nutrient availability in the almost universally used Murashige and Skoog (Physiol Plant 15:473-497, 1962) basal medium or variants of it. In recent years, it has been shown that many plants, especially perennials, are at least locally endophytically colonized intercellularly by bacteria. The latter, and intracellular pathogenic bacteria and viruses/viroids, may pass latently into culture and be spread horizontally and vertically in cultures. Growth of some potentially cultivable endophytes may be suppressed by the high salt and sugar content of the Murashige and Skoog basal medium and suboptimal temperatures for their growth in plant tissue growth rooms. The management of contamination in tissue culture involves three stages: disease screening (syn. disease indexing) of the stock plants with disease and endophyte elimination where detected; establishment and pathogen and contaminant screening of established initial cultures

  4. Invasive Plants, Fire Succession, and Restoration of Creosote Bush Scrub in Southern California

    OpenAIRE

    Steers, Robert Jeremy

    2008-01-01

    Exotic annual plant species have invaded large regions of southern California deserts. Certain areas have been especially impacted, such as the western edge of the Colorado Desert adjacent to Mt. San Gorgonio, Banning Pass, and Mt. San Jacinto. This landscape is highly invaded due to relatively high winter rainfall compared to interior desert locales and elevated anthropogenic nitrogen deposition from urban areas to the west. Invasive annual grasses, in particular, are abundant here and ha...

  5. Arthropods, plants, and transmission lines in Arizona: secondary succession in a Sonoran Desert habitat

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johnson, C.D.; Ditsworth, T.M.; Beley, J.R.

    1981-09-01

    Overall arthropod densities were low at this site, but the arthropod densities on the disturbed areas appeared to be enhanced after several years. No taxa were found to be statistically different in density between control and disturbed plots. Diversity decreased on the disturbed area after construction. Arthropod community similarity (C) was lower after construction, but C values appear to be related to presence or absence of annual herbs and grasses and not to total cover. Except for globe mallow, there were no pioneer plant species on the experimental plot. Effects of powerline construction on the experimental plant community were a brief reduction in total cover and a slight increase in cover of herbs and annual grasses. The 1976 and 1977 samples exhibit comparable cover values of these plants on both experimental and control plots. The dominant arthropod taxa on the experimental area (especially Thysanoptera, Cicadellidae, Coccinellidae, and Melyridae) appear to be responding numerically to the annual herbs and grasses which are becoming established on the plot.

  6. Nectar secretion dynamic links pollinator behavior to consequences for plant reproductive success in the ornithophilous mistletoe Psittacanthus robustus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerra, T J; Galetto, L; Silva, W R

    2014-09-01

    The mistletoe Psittacanthus robustus was studied as a model to link flower phenology and nectar secretion strategy to pollinator behaviour and the reproductive consequences for the plant. The bright-coloured flowers presented diurnal anthesis, opened asynchronously throughout the rainy season and produced copious dilute nectar as the main reward for pollinators. Most nectar was secreted just after flower opening, with little sugar replenishment after experimental removals. During the second day of anthesis in bagged flowers, the flowers quickly reabsorbed the offered nectar. Low values of nectar standing crop recorded in open flowers can be linked with high visitation rates by bird pollinators. Eight hummingbirds and two passerines were observed as potential pollinators. The most frequent flower visitors were the hummingbirds Eupetomena macroura and Colibri serrirostris, which actively defended flowering mistletoes. The spatial separation between anthers, stigma and nectar chamber promotes pollen deposition on flapping wings of hovering hummingbirds that usually probe many flowers per visit. Seed set did not differ between hand-, self- and cross-pollinated flowers, but these treatments set significantly more seeds than flowers naturally exposed to flower visitors. We suggest that the limitation observed in the reproductive success of this plant is not related to pollinator scarcity, but probably to the extreme frequency of visitation by territorial hummingbirds. We conclude that the costs and benefits of plant reproduction depend on the interaction strength between flowers and pollinators, and the assessment of nectar secretion dynamics, pollinator behaviour and plant breeding system allows clarification of the complexity of such associations.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Klein, Adam [Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA (United States)

    2015-01-01

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

  8. Evaluation of Plant- Compost -Microorganisms Synergy for the Remediation of Diesel contaminated Soil: Success Stories from the Field Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hussain, Imran; Wimmer, Bernhard; Soja, Gerhard; Sessitsch, Angela; Reichenauer, Thomas G.

    2016-04-01

    Total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) contain a mixture of crude oil, gasoline, creosote and diesel is one of the most common groups of persistent organic pollutants. TPH enters into the ecosystem (soil, water and air) through leakage of underground storage tanks (LUST), accidental oil spills, transportation losses and industrial processes. Pollution associated with diesel oil and its refined products is of great concern worldwide due to its threats/damages for human and ecosystem health, soil structure and ground water quality. Extensive soils pollution with petroleum hydrocarbons results in extreme harsh surroundings, produce hydrophobic conditions and infertile soils that ultimately lead towards less plant and microorganisms growth. Among biological methods, bioremediation and phytoremediation are promising technologies that have both technical and ecological benefits as compared to convention methods. Within phytoremediation, rhizoremediation based on stimulation of degrading microorganism's population influenced by plant rhizospheric effect is known as main mechanism for phytoremediation of petroleum polluted soils. Composting along with rhizodegradtion was used to remediate freshly spilled soils at Lysimeter station Siebersdof, Austria. Experiment was started in July 2013 and will be monitored up to September 2016. Field station has 12 Lysimeter in total; each has length, width and depth of 100 cm respectively. Each Lysimeter was filled with normal agricultural soil from Siebersdof (0-70 cm), sand (70-85 cm) and stones (85-100cm). Sand and stones were added to support the normal leaching and percolation of water as we collected leachate samples after regular intervals. After filling, commercial diesel oil (2% w/w of 0-70 cm soil) was spilled on top of each Lysimeter as accidental spill occurs in filed. Compost was added at 0-15 cm layer (5% w/w of soil) to stimulate plant as well as microorganisms growth. Whole Lysimeter station was divided into three treatments

  9. Biological conversion assay using Clostridium phytofermentans to estimate plant feedstock quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee Scott J

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is currently considerable interest in developing renewable sources of energy. One strategy is the biological conversion of plant biomass to liquid transportation fuel. Several technical hurdles impinge upon the economic feasibility of this strategy, including the development of energy crops amenable to facile deconstruction. Reliable assays to characterize feedstock quality are needed to measure the effects of pre-treatment and processing and of the plant and microbial genetic diversity that influence bioconversion efficiency. Results We used the anaerobic bacterium Clostridium phytofermentans to develop a robust assay for biomass digestibility and conversion to biofuels. The assay utilizes the ability of the microbe to convert biomass directly into ethanol with little or no pre-treatment. Plant samples were added to an anaerobic minimal medium and inoculated with C. phytofermentans, incubated for 3 days, after which the culture supernatant was analyzed for ethanol concentration. The assay detected significant differences in the supernatant ethanol from wild-type sorghum compared with brown midrib sorghum mutants previously shown to be highly digestible. Compositional analysis of the biomass before and after inoculation suggested that differences in xylan metabolism were partly responsible for the differences in ethanol yields. Additionally, we characterized the natural genetic variation for conversion efficiency in Brachypodium distachyon and shrub willow (Salix spp.. Conclusion Our results agree with those from previous studies of lignin mutants using enzymatic saccharification-based approaches. However, the use of C. phytofermentans takes into consideration specific organismal interactions, which will be crucial for simultaneous saccharification fermentation or consolidated bioprocessing. The ability to detect such phenotypic variation facilitates the genetic analysis of mechanisms underlying plant feedstock quality.

  10. Biophysical characteristics of successful oilseed embryo cryoprotection and cryopreservation using vacuum infiltration vitrification: an innovation in plant cell preservation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadarajan, Jayanthi; Pritchard, Hugh W

    2014-01-01

    Heterogeneity in morphology, physiology and cellular chemistry of plant tissues can compromise successful cryoprotection and cryopreservation. Cryoprotection is a function of exposure time × temperature × permeability for the chosen protectant and diffusion pathway length, as determined by specimen geometry, to provide sufficient dehydration whilst avoiding excessive chemical toxicity. We have developed an innovative method of vacuum infiltration vitrification (VIV) at 381 mm (15 in) Hg (50 kPa) that ensures the rapid (5 min), uniform permeation of Plant Vitrification Solution 2 (PVS2) cryoprotectant into plant embryos and their successful cryopreservation, as judged by regrowth in vitro. This method was validated on zygotic embryos/embryonic axes of three species (Carica papaya, Passiflora edulis and Laurus nobilis) up to 1.6 mg dry mass and 5.6 mm in length, with varying physiology (desiccation tolerances) and 80 °C variation in lipid thermal profiles, i.e., visco-elasticity properties, as determined by differential scanning calorimetry. Comparisons between the melting features of cryoprotected embryos and embryo regrowth indicated an optimal internal PVS2 concentration of about 60% of full strength. The physiological vigour of surviving embryos was directly related to the proportion of survivors. Compared with conventional vitrification, VIV-cryopreservation offered a ∼ 10-fold reduction in PVS2 exposure times, higher embryo viability and regrowth and greater effectiveness at two pre-treatment temperatures (0 °C and 25 °C). VIV-cryopreservation may form the basis of a generic, high throughput technology for the ex situ conservation of plant genetic resources, aiding food security and protection of species from diverse habitats and at risk of extinction.

  11. Seasonal dynamics of CO{sub 2} exchange during primary succession of boreal mires as controlled by phenology of plants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Leppala, M.; Kukko-Oja, K. [Finnish Forest Research Inst., Muhos (Finland); Laine, J. [Finnish Forest Research Inst., Parkano (Finland); Tuittila, E.S. [Helsinki Univ., Helsinki (Finland). Dept. of Forest Ecology, Peatland Ecology Group

    2008-07-01

    Seasonal dynamics in vegetation and carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) exchange were studied at 5 small mire basins along a chronosequence from the initial stages of paludification through to the bog stage in the Bay of Bothnia region in Finland. Precipitation and mean temperature during the summer 2004 study season were measured at a nearby meteorological station. Plant community composition was determined by estimating the projection cover of each species. Subplots in each of the study sites were established to count the number of living leaves of all vascular plant species. Sample plots were surrounded by aluminum collars in order to facilitate CO{sub 2} exchange measurements. Infrared gas analyzers were used to measure CO{sub 2} concentrations. Seasonal estimates of CO{sub 2} exchange dynamics were modelled in order to quantify the importance of different functional plant groups during the mire successions. Results of the study showed that seasonal variations in plant phenology and ecosystem respiration decreased in older sites along a mire chronosequence. Photosynthetically effective groups such as sedges and graminoids determined most of the seasonal CO{sub 2} dynamics. The higher level of gross photosynthesis combined with lower ecosystem respiration made the younger successional stages the largest sinks of atmospheric CO{sub 2}. Results suggested that autogenic factors controlled both the level and variation of CO{sub 2} exchange during mire succession. It was concluded that changes in vegetation must be considered when developing dynamic carbon models for mires of different ages, peat depths, and successional stages. 61 refs., 3 tabs., 8 figs.

  12. Biophysical characteristics of successful oilseed embryo cryoprotection and cryopreservation using vacuum infiltration vitrification: an innovation in plant cell preservation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jayanthi Nadarajan

    Full Text Available Heterogeneity in morphology, physiology and cellular chemistry of plant tissues can compromise successful cryoprotection and cryopreservation. Cryoprotection is a function of exposure time × temperature × permeability for the chosen protectant and diffusion pathway length, as determined by specimen geometry, to provide sufficient dehydration whilst avoiding excessive chemical toxicity. We have developed an innovative method of vacuum infiltration vitrification (VIV at 381 mm (15 in Hg (50 kPa that ensures the rapid (5 min, uniform permeation of Plant Vitrification Solution 2 (PVS2 cryoprotectant into plant embryos and their successful cryopreservation, as judged by regrowth in vitro. This method was validated on zygotic embryos/embryonic axes of three species (Carica papaya, Passiflora edulis and Laurus nobilis up to 1.6 mg dry mass and 5.6 mm in length, with varying physiology (desiccation tolerances and 80 °C variation in lipid thermal profiles, i.e., visco-elasticity properties, as determined by differential scanning calorimetry. Comparisons between the melting features of cryoprotected embryos and embryo regrowth indicated an optimal internal PVS2 concentration of about 60% of full strength. The physiological vigour of surviving embryos was directly related to the proportion of survivors. Compared with conventional vitrification, VIV-cryopreservation offered a ∼ 10-fold reduction in PVS2 exposure times, higher embryo viability and regrowth and greater effectiveness at two pre-treatment temperatures (0 °C and 25 °C. VIV-cryopreservation may form the basis of a generic, high throughput technology for the ex situ conservation of plant genetic resources, aiding food security and protection of species from diverse habitats and at risk of extinction.

  13. Success factors for the acceptance of renewable energy production plants; Erfolgsfaktoren fuer die Akzeptanz von Erneuerbare-Energie-Anlagen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Walter, Goetz [Zuerich Univ. (Switzerland). Lehrstuhl Sozialpsychologie; Krauter, Sven; Schwenzer, Andreas [The Advisory House GmbH, Muenchen (Germany)

    2011-03-15

    The majority of the German population is in support of the expansion of renewable energies. However, when it comes to construction work, project developers often meet with fierce opposition from the local population. One success factor in raising local acceptance of renewable energy production plants lies in planning projects such that citizens' interests and concerns are taken into account and well-conceived means of public participation are provided. Moreover, municipalities themselves can take on a pivotal role by becoming actively involved in the planning and development process and advertising renewable energy as a way towards municipal emancipation. This gives citizens less reasons to make a stand against such projects.

  14. Vascular plant removal effects on biological N fixation vary across a boreal forest island gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gundale, Michael J; Wardle, David A; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte

    2010-06-01

    There is currently much interest in understanding how biodiversity loss affects the functioning of ecosystems, but few studies have evaluated how ecosystem processes change in response to one another following biodiversity loss. We focused on a well-described gradient of 30 forested lake islands in northern Sweden, where island size determines the occurrence of lightning-ignited wildfire, which in turn determines successional stage, plant species composition, and productivity. We investigated the effect of biodiversity loss on biological nitrogen fixation by feathermosses through an experiment consisting of factorial removals of three understory shrub species (Vaccinium myrtillis, Vaccinium vitis-idaea, and Empetrum hermaphroditum) and two plant functional groups (shrubs and tree roots). We tested the hypothesis that, following vascular plant species loss, N fixation rates would be impaired by changes in pools or processes that increase extractable soil N, because changes in the supply rate of N to feathermosses should influence their demand for newly fixed N. Further, we hypothesized that the effects of removals on N fixation would depend on environmental context (i.e., island size), because it has been previously demonstrated that the effect of vascular plant species removal on N recycling pools and processes was strongest on productive islands. The data demonstrated that removal of two shrub species (V. vitis-idaea and E. hermaphroditum) negatively aflected the N fixation of Hylocomium splendens, but positively affected Pleurozium schreberi, resulting in unchanged areal N fixation rates. In the functional removal experiment, tree root removal resulted in a significant negative effect on N fixation. The effects of shrub and root removals on N fixation occurred only on small islands and thus were context dependent. This pattern did not correspond to the effect of shrub and root removal treatments on N-recycling pools or processes, which only occurred in response

  15. Effect of Agrobacterium Induced Necrosis, Antibiotic Induced Phytotoxicity and Other Factors in Successful Plant Transformation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandip S. Magdum

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Agrobacterium tumefaciens infection and antibiotic wash are the critical steps of Agrobacterium mediated plant transformation procedure, most time responsible for lower transformation efficiency due to necrosis and phytotoxicity caused by biotic stress of Agrobacterium and abiotic stress by antibiotics respectively. Ammi majus Egyptian origin medicinal plant and Pearl millet cereal grain crop were studied for their stress responses to Agrobacterium mediated transformation (AMT. Agrobacterium strains LBA4404 (O.D.=0.6-0.8 and EHA105 (O.D.=0.2-0.4 were used for transformation experiments to infect calli of Ammi majus and embryogenic calli of Pearl millet respectively. Incase of antibiotic wash, Cefotaxime 500 mg L-1 was used for LBA4404 infected Ammi majus calli and Timentin 300 mg L-1 was used for EHA105 infected embryogenic calli of Pearl millet. Effects of Agrobacterium infection, antibiotic and NaOCl washes on Agrobacterium removal and both explants physiological changes during transformation experimental procedures were studied. At the end of the experiments explants survival efficiency of Ammi majus and pearl millet were 8% and 5% respectively. Biotic and abiotic stress factors responsible for lower efficiency were investigated with various other factors and strategies were discussed which are need to be considered for higher transformation events and target tissue survival.

  16. Report on the biological monitoring program at Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant December 1990 to November 1992

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kszos, L.A. [ed.

    1994-03-01

    On September 23, 1987, the Commonwealth of Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet issued an Agreed Order that required the development of a Biological Monitoring Program (BMP) for the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP). Beginning in fall 1991, the Environmental Sciences Division (ESD) at Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL) added data collection and report preparation to its responsibilities for the PGDP BMP. The BMP has been continued because it has proven to be extremely valuable in identifying those effluents with the potential for adversely affecting instream fauna, assessing the ecological health of receiving streams, guiding plans for remediation, and protecting human health. In September 1992, a renewed permit was issued which requires toxicity monitoring of continuous and intermittent outfalls on a quarterly basis. The BMP for PGDP consists of three major tasks: (1) effluent and ambient toxicity monitoring, (2) bioaccumulation studies, and (3) ecological surveys of stream communities. This report includes ESD/ORNL activities occurring from December 1990 to November 1992.

  17. Reproductive Biology of Mangrove Plants Clerodendrum inerme, Derris trifoliata, Suaeda maritima, Suaeda monoica, Suaeda nudiflora

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aluri Jacob Solomon Raju

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Floral biology, sexual system, breeding system, pollinators, fruiting and seed dispersal aspects of five mangrove associate species, namely, Clerodendrum inerme, Derris trifoliata, Suaeda maritima, S. monoica, and S. nudiflora were studied. All these species are hermaphroditic, self-compatible, and exhibit mixed breeding systems adapted for pollination by external agents. C. inerme and D. trifoliata are principally entomophilous, while Suaeda species are ambophilous. The study suggests that these plant species are important constituents of mangrove forests. C. inerme and D. trifoliata are useful in stabilizing the banks of back water creeks, while Suaeda species are useful to carpet the saline areas and desalinate the soils which are subsequently useful for agricultural activities.

  18. Report on the Biological Monitoring Program at Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant December 1992--December 1993

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kszos, L.A.; Hinzman, R.L.; Peterson, M.J.; Ryon, M.G.; Smith, J.G.; Southworth, G.R.

    1995-06-01

    On September 24, 1987, the Commonwealth of Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet issued an Agreed Order that required the development of a Biological Monitoring Program (BMP) for the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP). The goals of BMP are to demonstrate that the effluent limitations established for PGDP protect and maintain the use of Little Bayou and Big Bayou creeks for growth and propagation of fish and other aquatic life, characterize potential health and environmental impacts, document the effects of pollution abatement facilities on stream biota, and recommend any program improvements that would increase effluent treatability. The BMP for PGDP consists of three major tasks: effluent and ambient toxicity monitoring, bioaccumulation studies, and ecological surveys of stream communities (i.e., benthic macroinvertebrates and fish). This report includes ESD activities occurring from December 1992 to December 1993, although activities conducted outside this time period are included as appropriate.

  19. Characterization of Radiation Fields in Biological Shields of Nuclear Power Plants for Assessing Concrete Degradation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Remec, Igor [ORNL; Rosseel, Thomas M [ORNL; Field, Kevin G [ORNL; Pape, Yann Le [Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)

    2016-01-01

    Life extensions of nuclear power plants to 60 and potentially 80 years of operation have renewed interest in long-term material degradation. One material being considered is concrete with a particular focus on radiation-induced effects. Based on the projected neutron fluence (E > 0.1 MeV) values in the concrete biological shields of the US PWR fleet and the available data on radiation effects on concrete, some decrease in mechanical properties of concrete cannot be ruled out during extended operation beyond 60 years. An expansion of the irradiated concrete database and a reliable determination of relevant neutron fluence energy cutoff value are necessary to assure reliable risk assessment for NPPs extended operation.

  20. Antisense oligodeoxynucleotide inhibition as a potent diagnostic tool for gene function in plant biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jansson, Christer; Sun, Chuanxin; Ghebramedhin, Haile; Hoglund, Anna-Stina; Jansson, Christer

    2008-01-15

    Antisense oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) inhibition emerges as an effective means for probing gene function in plant cells. Employing this method we have established the importance of the SUSIBA2 transcription factor for regulation of starch synthesis in barley endosperm, and arrived at a model for the role of the SUSIBAs in sugar signaling and source-sink commutation during cereal endosperm development. In this addendum we provide additional data demonstrating the suitability of the antisense ODN technology in studies on starch branching enzyme activities in barley leaves. We also comment on the mechanism for ODN uptake in plant cells. Antisense ODNs are short (12-25 nt-long) stretches of single-stranded ODNs that hybridize to the cognate mRNA in a sequence-specific manner, thereby inhibiting gene expression. They are naturally occurring in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes where they partake in gene regulation and defense against viral infection. The mechanisms for antisense ODN inhibition are not fully understood but it is generally considered that the ODN either sterically interferes with translation or promotes transcript degradation by RNase H activation. The earliest indication of the usefulness of antisense ODN technology for the purposes of molecular biology and medical therapy was the demonstration in 1978 that synthetic ODNs complementary to Raos sarcoma virus could inhibit virus replication in tissue cultures of chick embryo fibroblasts. Since then the antisense ODN technology has been widely used in animal sciences and as an important emerging therapeutic approach in clinical medicine. However, antisense ODN inhibition has been an under-exploited strategy for plant tissues, although the prospects for plant cells in suspension cultures to take up single-stranded ODNs was reported over a decade ago. In 2001, two reports from Malho and coworker demonstrated the use of cationic-complexed antisense ODNs to suppress expression of genes encoding pollen

  1. Antisense oligodeoxynucleotide inhibition as a potent diagnostic tool for gene function in plant biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jansson, Christer; Sun, Chuanxin; Ghebramedhin, Haile; Hoglund, Anna-Stina; Jansson, Christer

    2008-01-15

    Antisense oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) inhibition emerges as an effective means for probing gene function in plant cells. Employing this method we have established the importance of the SUSIBA2 transcription factor for regulation of starch synthesis in barley endosperm, and arrived at a model for the role of the SUSIBAs in sugar signaling and source-sink commutation during cereal endosperm development. In this addendum we provide additional data demonstrating the suitability of the antisense ODN technology in studies on starch branching enzyme activities in barley leaves. We also comment on the mechanism for ODN uptake in plant cells. Antisense ODNs are short (12-25 nt-long) stretches of single-stranded ODNs that hybridize to the cognate mRNA in a sequence-specific manner, thereby inhibiting gene expression. They are naturally occurring in both prokaryotes and eukaryotes where they partake in gene regulation and defense against viral infection. The mechanisms for antisense ODN inhibition are not fully understood but it is generally considered that the ODN either sterically interferes with translation or promotes transcript degradation by RNase H activation. The earliest indication of the usefulness of antisense ODN technology for the purposes of molecular biology and medical therapy was the demonstration in 1978 that synthetic ODNs complementary to Raos sarcoma virus could inhibit virus replication in tissue cultures of chick embryo fibroblasts. Since then the antisense ODN technology has been widely used in animal sciences and as an important emerging therapeutic approach in clinical medicine. However, antisense ODN inhibition has been an under-exploited strategy for plant tissues, although the prospects for plant cells in suspension cultures to take up single-stranded ODNs was reported over a decade ago. In 2001, two reports from Malho and coworker demonstrated the use of cationic-complexed antisense ODNs to suppress expression of genes encoding pollen

  2. Removal of micropollutants through a biological wastewater treatment plant in a subtropical climate, Queensland-Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardenas, Miguel Antonio Reyes; Ali, Imtiaj; Lai, Foon Yin; Dawes, Les; Thier, Ricarda; Rajapakse, Jay

    2016-01-01

    Municipal wastewaters contain a multitude of organic compounds derived from domestic and industrial sources including active components of pharmaceutical and personal care products and compounds used in agriculture, such as pesticides, or food processing such as artificial sweeteners often referred to as micropollutants. Some of these compounds or their degradation products may have detrimental effects on the environment, wildlife and humans. Acesuflame is one of the most popular artificial sweeteners to date used in foodstuffs. The main objectives of this descriptive study were to evaluate the presence of micropollutants in both the influent and effluent of a large-scale conventional biological wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in South-East Queensland receiving wastewater from households, hospitals and various industries. Based on USEPA Method 1694: Filtered samples were spiked with mass-labelled chemical standards and then analysed for the micropollutants using liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. The presence of thirty-eight compounds were detected in the wastewater influent to the treatment plant while nine of the compounds in the categories of analgesic, anti-inflammatory, alkaloid and lipid/cholesterol lowering drugs were undetectable (100 % removed) in the effluent. They were: Analgesic: Paracetamol, Salicylic acid, Oxycodone; Anti-inflammatory: Naproxen + ve, Atorvastatin, Indomethacin, Naproxen; Alkaloid: Caffeine; Lipid/cholesterol lowering: Gemfibrozol. The study results revealed that the micropollutants removal through this biological treatment process was similar to previous research reported from other countries including Europe the Americas and Asia, except for acesulfame, a highly persistent artificial sweetener. Surprisingly, acesulfame was diminished to a much greater extent (>90 %) than previously reported research for this type of WWTPs (45-65 %) that only include physical removal of objects and solids and a

  3. Plant molecular biology and biotechnology research in the post-recombinant DNA era.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tyagi, Akhilesh K; Khurana, Jitendra P

    2003-01-01

    After the beginning of the recombinant DNA era in the mid-1970s, researchers in India started to make use of the new technology to understand the structure of plant genes and regulation of their expression. The outcome started to appear in print in early the 1980s and genes for histones, tubulin, photosynthetic membrane proteins, phototransduction components, organelles and those regulated differentially by developmental and extrinsic signals were sequenced and characterized. Some genes of biotechnological importance like those encoding an interesting seed protein and the enzyme glyoxalase were also isolated. While work on the characterization of genome structure and organization was started quite early, it remained largely focused on the identification of DNA markers and genetic variability. In this context, the work on mustard, rice and wheat is worth mentioning. In the year 2000, India became a member of the international consortium to sequence entire rice genome. Several laboratories have also given attention to regulated expression of plastid and nuclear genes as well as to isolate target-specific promoters or design promoters with improved potential. Simultaneously, transgenic systems for crops like mustard, rice, wheat, cotton, legumes and several vegetables have been established. More recently, genes of agronomic importance like those for insect resistance, abiotic stress tolerance, nutritional improvement and male sterility, isolated in India or abroad, have been utilized for raising transgenics for crop improvement. Some of these transgenics have already shown their potential in containment facility or limited field trials conducted under the stipulated guidelines. Plant molecular biology and biotechnology are thus clearly poised to make an impact on research in basic biology and agriculture in the near future.

  4. Synthesis of Biomass and Utilization of Plant Wastes in a Physical Model of a Biological Life Support System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tikhomirov, A. A.; Ushakova, S. A.; Manukovsky, N. S.; Lisovsky, G. M.; Kudenko, Yu A.; Kovalev, V. S.; Gribovksaya, I. V.; Tirranen, L. S.; Zolotukkhin, I. G.; Gros, J. B.; Lasseur, Ch.

    Biological life support systems (LSS) with highly closed intrasystem mass ex change mass ex change hold much promise for long-term human life support at planetary stations (Moon, Mars, etc.). The paper considers problems of biosynthesis of higher plants' biomass and "biological incineration" of plant wastes in a working physical model of biological LSS. The plant wastes are "biologically incinerated" in a special heterotroph block involving Californian worms, mushrooms and straw. The block processes plant wastes (straw, haulms) to produce soil-like substrate (SLS) on which plants (wheat, radish) are grown. Gas ex change in such a system consists of respiratory gas ex change of SLS and photosynthesis and respiration of plants. Specifics of gas ex change dynamics of high plants -SLS complex has been considered. Relationship between such a gas ex change and photosynthetic active radiation (PAR) and age of plants has been established. SLS fertility has been shown to depend on its thickness and phase of maturity. The biogenic elements (potassium, phosphorus, nitrogen) in Liebig minimum have been found to include nitrogen which is the first to impair plants' growth in disruption of the process conditions. The SLS microflora has been found to have different kinds of ammonifying and denitrifying bacteria which is indicative of intensive transformation of nitrogen-containing compounds. The number of physiological groups of microorganisms in SLS was, on the whole, steady. As a result, organic substances -products of ex change of plants and microorganisms were not accumulated in the medium, but mineralized and assimilated by the biocenosis. Experiments showed that the developed model of a man-made ecosystem realized complete utilization of plant wastes and involved them into the intrasystem turnover. In multiple recycle of the mat ter (more than 5 cycles) under the irradiance intensity of 150 W/m2 PAR and the SLS mass (dry weight) of 17.7 -19.9 kg/m2 average total harvest of

  5. Thermochemical pretreatments of organic fraction of municipal solid waste from a mechanical-biological treatment plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Álvarez-Gallego, Carlos José; Fdez-Güelfo, Luis Alberto; de los Ángeles Romero Aguilar, María; Romero García, Luis Isidoro

    2015-02-09

    The organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW) usually contains high lignocellulosic and fatty fractions. These fractions are well-known to be a hard biodegradable substrate for biological treatments and its presence involves limitations on the performance of anaerobic processes. To avoid this, thermochemical pretreatments have been applied on the OFMSW coming from a full-scale mechanical-biological treatment (MBT) plant, in order to pre-hydrolyze the waste and improve the organic matter solubilisation. To study the solubilisation yield, the increments of soluble organic matter have been measured in terms of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), soluble chemical oxygen demand (sCOD), total volatile fatty acids (TVFA) and acidogenic substrate as carbon (ASC). The process variables analyzed were temperature, pressure and NaOH dosage. The levels of work for each variable were three: 160-180-200 °C, 3.5-5.0-6.5 bar and 2-3-4 g NaOH/L. In addition, the pretreatment time was also modified among 15 and 120 min. The best conditions for organic matter solubilisation were 160 °C, 3 g NaOH/L, 6.5 bar and 30 min, with yields in terms of DOC, sCOD, TVFA and ASC of 176%, 123%, 119% and 178% respectively. Thus, predictably the application of this pretreatment in these optimum conditions could improve the H2 production during the subsequent Dark Fermentation process.

  6. Report on the biological monitoring program at Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant, January--December 1997

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kszos, L.A.; Peterson, M.J.; Ryon, M.G.; Smith, J.G.; Southworth, G.R.

    1998-03-01

    On September 24, 1987, the Commonwealth of Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet issued an Agreed Order that required the development of a Biological Monitoring Program (BMP) for the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP). A plan for the biological monitoring of the receiving streams was implemented in 1987 and consisted of ecological surveys, toxicity monitoring of effluents and receiving streams, evaluation of bioaccumulation of trace contaminants in biota, and supplemental chemical characterization of effluents. Beginning in fall 1991, the Environmental Sciences Division (ESD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory added data collection and report preparation to its responsibilities for the PGDP BMP. The BMP has been continued because it has proven to be extremely valuable in (1) identifying those effluents with the potential for adversely affecting instream fauna, (2) assessing the ecological health of receiving streams, and (3) guiding plans for remediation and protecting human health. The BMP for PGDP consists of three major tasks: (1) effluent toxicity monitoring, (2) bioaccumulation studies, and (3) ecological surveys of benthic macroinvertebrate communities and fish. With the exception of the benthic macroinvertebrate community surveys, this report focuses on activities from January to December 1997.

  7. Current good manufacturing practice in plant automation of biological production processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorresteijn, R C; Wieten, G; van Santen, P T; Philippi, M C; de Gooijer, C D; Tramper, J; Beuvery, E C

    1997-01-01

    The production of biologicals is subject to strict governmental regulations. These are drawn up in current good manufacturing practices (cGMP), a.o. by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. To implement cGMP in a production facility, plant automation becomes an essential tool. For this purpose Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) have been developed that control all operations inside a production facility. The introduction of these recipe-driven control systems that follow ISA S88 standards for batch processes has made it possible to implement cGMP regulations in the control strategy of biological production processes. Next to this, an MES offers additional features such as stock management, planning and routing tools, process-dependent control, implementation of software sensors and predictive models, application of historical data and on-line statistical techniques for trend analysis and detection of instrumentation failures. This paper focuses on the development of new production strategies in which cGMP guidelines are an essential part.

  8. Thermochemical Pretreatments of Organic Fraction of Municipal Solid Waste from a Mechanical-Biological Treatment Plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos José Alvarez-Gallego

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW usually contains high lignocellulosic and fatty fractions. These fractions are well-known to be a hard biodegradable substrate for biological treatments and its presence involves limitations on the performance of anaerobic processes. To avoid this, thermochemical pretreatments have been applied on the OFMSW coming from a full-scale mechanical-biological treatment (MBT plant, in order to pre-hydrolyze the waste and improve the organic matter solubilisation. To study the solubilisation yield, the increments of soluble organic matter have been measured in terms of dissolved organic carbon (DOC, soluble chemical oxygen demand (sCOD, total volatile fatty acids (TVFA and acidogenic substrate as carbon (ASC. The process variables analyzed were temperature, pressure and NaOH dosage. The levels of work for each variable were three: 160–180–200 °C, 3.5–5.0–6.5 bar and 2–3–4 g NaOH/L. In addition, the pretreatment time was also modified among 15 and 120 min. The best conditions for organic matter solubilisation were 160 °C, 3 g NaOH/L, 6.5 bar and 30 min, with yields in terms of DOC, sCOD, TVFA and ASC of 176%, 123%, 119% and 178% respectively. Thus, predictably the application of this pretreatment in these optimum conditions could improve the H2 production during the subsequent Dark Fermentation process.

  9. TERPENOIDS FROM THE STEM BARK OF JATROPHA PLANTS AND THEIR BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manggau Marianti

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Three terpenoids, including two diterpenes (curcusone B and jatrophone and a triterpene (stigmasterol have beenisolated from the stem bark of Jatropha plants. Curcusone B and stigmasterol were isolated from J. curcas, meanwhilejatrophone and stigmasterol were from J. gossypifolia. The biological activities of these compounds have beenevaluated toward bacteria, fungi and tumour cells. Isolation was carried out in vacuum liqiud cromatography (VLCtechnique with silica gel as an adsorben and some solvents as eluents. The compound structures were determined byspectroscopic methodes i.e. UV-vis, FTIR, NMR (1-D, 2-D and were then compared based on their spectroscopic datawith similiar data from literatures. The biological properties of these compounds were evaluated against four strains ofbacteria (Acetobacter sp., Eschericia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus sp., 4 strains of fungi (Aspergilusniger, Penicillium sp. (grey, Penicillium sp. (white and Rhizopus sp. and murine leukemia P-388 cells. The resultsshowed that cytotoxic property of curcusone B towards murine leukemia P-388 cells is better than jatrophone andstigmasterol which are IC50 = 0.57 μg/mL (1.93 μM for curcusone B and IC50 > 100 μg/mL for jatrophone andstigmasterol. Meanwhile, activities against bacteria, jatrophone is better than curcusone B and stigmasterol. Jatrophoneis the most active against S. aureus (bacteria with growth inhibition zone 36 mm and A.niger (fungi is 44 mm. Furtherstudy indicated that jatrophone was bacteriostatic against S. aureus.

  10. Stepwise screening of microorganisms for commercial use in biological control of plant pathogenic fungi and bacteria. Biological Control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Köhl, J.; Postma, J.; Nicot, P.; Ruocco, M.

    2011-01-01

    The development of new biocontrol products against plant diseases requires screening of high numbers of candidate antagonists. Antagonists for commercial use have to fulfill many different requirements. Besides being active against the specific targeted plant pathogens they must be safe and cost-eff

  11. Biological screening of araripe basin medicinal plants using Artemia salina Leach and pathogenic bacteria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José Galberto M da Costa

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Many medicinal plant species from the Araripe Basin are widely known and used in folk medicine and for commercial manufacturing of phytotherapeutic products. Few ethnobotanical and pharmacological studies have been undertaken in this region, however, in spite of the great cultural and biological diversity found there. Materials and Methods : Extracts of 11 plant species collected from Cearα state, Brazil, were subjected to the brine shrimp lethality test in order to detect potential sources of novel cytotoxic, antitumor compounds. The larvicidal activity, based on the percentage of larval mortality, was evaluated after 24 h exposure to the treatments. Results: All species tested showed good larvicidal activity as compared to a reference compound and literature data. The extract from Vanillosmopsis arborea was the most active with an LC 50 of 3.9 μg/ml. Best results were shown by Lantana montevidensis against Pseudomonas aeruginosa [minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC 8μg/ml] and Escherichia coli (MIC 32 μg/ml, Zanthoxylum rhoifolium against E. coli (MIC, 256 μg/ml and Staphylococcus aureus (MIC 64 μg/ml and Croton zenhtneri against S. aureus (MIC 64 μg/ml. Conclusion: Chemical tests indicated that a wide variety of natural product classes was present in those extracts that showed significant activities in the bioassays.

  12. Characterization of Radiation Fields in Biological Shields of Nuclear Power Plants for Assessing Concrete Degradation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remec, Igor; Rosseel, Thomas M.; Field, Kevin G.; Le Pape, Yann

    2016-02-01

    Life extensions of nuclear power plants to 60 and potentially 80 years of operation have renewed interest in long-term material degradation. One material being considered is concrete, with a particular focus on radiation-induced effects. Based on the projected neutron fluence values (E > 0.1 MeV) in the concrete biological shields of the US pressurized water reactor fleet and the available data on radiation effects on concrete, some decrease in mechanical properties of concrete cannot be ruled out during extended operation beyond 60 years. An expansion of the irradiated concrete database and a reliable determination of relevant neutron fluence energy cutoff value are necessary to ensure reliable risk assessment for extended operation of nuclear power plants. Notice: This manuscript has been authored by UT-Battelle, LLC, under contract DE-AC0500OR22725 with the US Department of Energy. The United States Government retains and the publisher, by accepting the article for publication, acknowledges that the United States Government retains a nonexclusive, paid-up, irrevocable, worldwide license to publish or reproduce the published form of this manuscript, or allow others to do so, for United States Government purposes.

  13. High Throughput Extraction of Plant, Marine and Fungal Specimens for Preservation of Biologically Active Molecules

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas G. McCloud

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The Developmental Therapeutics Program (DTP of the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI, at its NCI-Frederick facility, has built perhaps the largest and most diverse natural products screening library in the world for drug discovery. Composed of plant, marine organism and microbial extracts, it currently contains in excess of 230,000 unique materials. From the inception of this program to identify new anticancer chemotherapeutics from natural products sources in 1987, two extracts have been sequentially prepared from each specimen: one produced by organic solvent extraction, which yields a complex material that contains non- to moderately polar small molecules, and a water-soluble extract, a milieu largely unexplored for useful drugs in earlier years, which contains polar small to medium-sized molecules. Plant specimens and microbial ferments are extracted by modified traditional methods, while the method developed to produce extracts from marine organisms is unique and very different from that used by marine natural products chemists previously, but again yields both an organic solvent soluble and a water soluble material for inclusion into the screening library. Details of high throughput extract production for preservation of biologically active molecules are presented.

  14. FY 14 interim report : Evaluation of treatments to mitigate negative plant-soil feedbacks and improve reconstruction seeding success at Kulm Wetland Management District

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Interim report for fiscal year 2014 on the research "Evaluation of treatments to mitigate negative plant-soil feedbacks and improve reconstruction seeding success at...

  15. Biological activities of the sulfated polysaccharide from the vascular plant Halodule wrightii

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliana M. C. Silva

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available A sulfated polysaccharide (SPSG was successfully isolated from seagrass Halodule wrightii Asch., Cymodoceaceae, and its antioxidant and anticoagulant activities were investigated. The data presented here showed that the SPSG is a 11 kDa sulfated heterogalactan with a sulfatation degree of 20.63% and it also contains glucose and xylose. SPSG antioxidant activities were evaluated using several in vitro assays and the anticoagulant activity was evaluated by aPTT and PT tests. These assays suggested that the SPSG possessed remarkable antioxidant properties in different in vitro assays and an outstanding anticoagulant activity 2.5-fold higher than that of heparin Clexane® in the aPTT test. This data represents the first reported on the sulfated polysaccharide biological activities from seagrass. These results indicate that SPSG can be considered in the future as a drug utilized in treating diseases from these systems.

  16. Strong spatial genetic structure reduces reproductive success in the critically endangered plant genus Pseudomisopates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amat, María E; Silvertown, Jonathan; Vargas, Pablo

    2013-01-01

    Clonal growth can be a double-edged sword for endangered species, because the short-term insurance against extinction may incur a longer-term hazard of creating small inbred populations with low fecundity. In the present study, we quantify the advantages and disadvantages of clonal growth regarding the fitness of the central Iberian monotypic endangered genus Pseudomisopates. Preliminary studies showed that the species is self-incompatible and exhibits extensive clonal growth with plants flowering profusely. However, seeds at many sites seemed to be unviable, and no seedlings have been observed in the field. A fully replicated nested sampling design (n = 100) was conducted to explore genetic (using seven SSR loci) and environmental factors potentially affecting seed viability, such as: 1) clonal and genetic diversity, 2) spatial genetic structure, and 3) environmental factors (shrub cover and grazing). Generalized Linear Mixed Models were fitted relating genetic and environmental variables to reproductive variables (seed viability and flower display). Our results indicate that the relatively low genotypic diversity of the population (PD = 0.23), as quantified by SSRs, and the strong spatial genetic structure observed are congruent with intense clonal growth. This clonal growth is enhanced by unfavorable environmental conditions, such as canopy closure and grazing. Under these circumstances, both flower display and mate availability decrease, thus hindering sexual reproduction. Indeed, a mixed reproductive system (clonal and sexual) to escape environmental stochasticity is crucial for the survival of Pseudomisopates, a species inhabiting a disturbance-prone ecosystem.

  17. Forest succession and population viability of grassland plants: long repayment of extinction debt in Primula veris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehtilä, Kari; Dahlgren, Johan P; Garcia, Maria Begoña; Leimu, Roosa; Syrjänen, Kimmo; Ehrlén, Johan

    2016-05-01

    Time lags in responses of organisms to deteriorating environmental conditions delay population declines and extinctions. We examined how local processes at the population level contribute to extinction debt, and how cycles of habitat deterioration and recovery may delay extinction. We carried out a demographic analysis of the fate of the grassland perennial Primula veris after the cessation of grassland management, where we used either a unidirectional succession model for forest habitat or a rotation model with a period of forest growth followed by a clear-cut and a new successional cycle. The simulations indicated that P. veris populations may have an extinction time of decades to centuries after a detrimental management change. A survey of the current incidence and abundance of P. veris in sites with different histories of afforestation confirmed the simulation results of low extinction rates. P. veris had reduced incidence and abundance only at sites with at least 100 years of forest cover. Time to extinction in simulations was dependent on the duration of the periods with favourable and unfavourable conditions after management cessation, and the population sizes and growth rates in these periods. Our results thus suggest that the ability of a species to survive is a complex function of disturbance regimes, rates of successional change, and the demographic response to environmental changes. Detailed demographic studies over entire successional cycles are therefore essential to identify the environmental conditions that enable long-term persistence and to design management for species experiencing extinction debts.

  18. History on the biological nitrogen fixation research in graminaceous plants: special emphasis on the Brazilian experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José I. Baldani

    2005-09-01

    Full Text Available This review covers the history on Biological Nitrogen Fixation (BNF in Graminaceous plants grown in Brazil, and describes research progress made over the last 40 years, most of whichwas coordinated by Johanna Döbereiner. One notable accomplishment during this period was the discovery of several nitrogen-fixing bacteria such as the rhizospheric (Beijerinckia fluminensis and Azotobacter paspali, associative (Azospirillum lipoferum, A. brasilense, A. amazonense and the endophytic (Herbaspirillum seropedicae, H. rubrisubalbicans, Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus, Burkholderia brasilensis and B. tropica. The role of these diazotrophs in association with grasses, mainly with cereal plants, has been studied and a lot of progress has been achieved in the ecological, physiological, biochemical, and genetic aspects. The mechanisms of colonization and infection of the plant tissues are better understood, and the BNF contribution to the soil/plant system has been determined. Inoculation studies with diazotrophs showed that endophytic bacteria have a much higher BNF contribution potential than associative diazotrophs. In addition, it was found that the plant genotype influences the plant/bacteria association. Recent data suggest that more studies should be conducted on the endophytic association to strengthen the BNF potential. The ongoing genome sequencing programs: RIOGENE (Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus and GENOPAR (Herbaspirillum seropedicae reflect the commitment to the BNF study in Brazil and should allow the country to continue in the forefront of research related to the BNF process in Graminaceous plants.A presente revisão aborda a história da Fixação Biológica de Nitrogênio (FBN em Gramíneas no Brasil, procurando mostrar a evolução da pesquisa na área iniciada a mais de 40 anos sob a liderança da pesquisadora Johanna Döbereiner. Um aspecto marcante deste período foi a descoberta de diversas bactérias fixadoras de nitrogênio atmosf

  19. In vitro antimalarial activity of extracts of some plants from a biological reserve in Costa Rica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Misael Chinchilla

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Treatment with the usual antimalarial drugs, have induced parasite resistance, reinforcing the need to finding natural antimalarial components that would be found on plants from the forest. Therefore, we decided to look for these components in Costa Rican plants from a protected forest area. Fresh and dry extracts of roots, bark, leaves, flowers and fruits of 25 plants from a biological reserve in Costa Rica, Reserva Biológica Alberto Manuel Brenes (REBAMB, were studied in vitro for the presence of substances with antimalarial activity. By studying the inhibition of P. berghei schizogony, we assessed the antimalarial activity of several plant extracts: Aphelandra aurantiaca, A. tridentata (Acanthaceae; Xanthosoma undipes (Araceae; Iriartea deltoidea (Arecaceae; Neurolaena lobata (Asteraceae; Senna papillosa, Pterocarpus hayessi, Lonchocarpus pentaphyllus (Fabaceae; Nectandra membranacea, Persea povedae, Cinamomum chavarrianum (Lauraceae; Hampea appendiculata (Malvaceae; Ruagea glabra, Guarea glabra (Meliaceae; Psidium guajava (Myrtaceae; Bocconia frutescens (Papaveraceae; Piper friedrichsthalii (Piperaceae; Clematis dioica (Ranunculaceae; Prunus annularis (Rosaceae; Siparuna thecaphora (Siparunaceae; Solanum arboreum, Witheringia solanácea (Solanaceae; Ticodendrum incognitum (Ticodendraceae; Heliocarpus appendiculatus (Tiliaceae and Myriocarpa longipes (Urticaceae. We used different parts of the plants as well as fresh and dried extracts for testing IC50. The solid content of the extracts ranged from 1-71.9μg/mL. The fresh extracts showed stronger activity than the dry ones. Since the plants showing the strongest antimalarial activity are very common in Central America, and some similar genera of these plants have shown positives results in South America, we considered important to present these findings for discussion. On the other hand, this is the first systematic study of this kind ever realized in a circumscribed and protected area of

  20. Floral biology and reproductive mechanisms of Mussambê (Cleome spinosa Jacq aiming at the plant breeding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cláudio Lúcio Fernandes Amaral

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Some plants from Cleome genus in Capparaceae family are used as medicinal and ornamental plants. The aim of this work was to study the fl oral biology and the reproductive mechanisms of C. spinosa to the plant breeding. Anthesis occurred between 17:30 to 18:30. The anthesis process is intimately related to climatic conditions. The main flower visitors were bees (Apis, Bombus, butterflies and bats (Glossophaga. Cleome spinosa presents mating system with predominance of outcrossing over the self-crossing, what it can evidences the wide reproductive flexibility of this species and emphasize the genetic variability, which is essential for evolution.

  1. ALOUD: Adult Learning Open University Determinants Study: Association between biological and psychological determinants and study success in adult formal distance education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Groot, Renate; Neroni, Joyce; Gijselaers, Jérôme; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2012-01-01

    De Groot, R. H. M., Neroni, J., Gijselaers, J., & Kirschner, P. A. (2012, 6 December). ALOUD: Adult Learning Open University Determinants Study: Associations between biological and psychological determinants and study success in adult formal distance education. Presented at the Open University for t

  2. The ALOUD Study: Adult Learning Open University Determinants Study - Influence of biological and psychological determinants on study success in formal lifelong learning in adults

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gijselaers, Jérôme; Neroni, Joyce; De Groot, Renate; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2011-01-01

    Gijselaers, H. J. M., Neroni, J., De Groot, R. H. M., & Kirschner, P. A. (2011, September). The ALOUD Study: Adult Learning Open University Determinants Study - Influence of biological and psychological determinants on study success in formal lifelong learning in adults. Presentation given for visit

  3. [Effects of biological organic fertilizer on microbial community's metabolic activity in a soil planted with chestnut (Castanea mollissima)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Lin; Gu, Jie; Hu, Ting; Gao, Hua; Chen, Zhi-Xue; Qin, Qing-Jun; Wang, Xiao-Juan

    2013-06-01

    A field experiment was conducted in Zhashui County of Shaanxi Province, Northwest China in 2011 to study the effects of biological organic fertilizer on the microbial community's metabolic activity in a soil planted with chestnut (Castanea mollissima). Three treatments were installed, i. e., control, compound fertilizer, and biological organic fertilizer. Soil samples were collected at harvest, and the metabolic activity was tested by Biolog method. In the treatment of biological organic fertilizer, the average well color development, Shannon evenness, richness, and McIntosh indices of microbial community were all significantly higher than the other two treatments. As compared with the control, applying biological organic fertilizer improved the ability of soil microbes in utilizing the carbon sources of carbohydrates and polymers, while applying compound fertilizer was in opposite. The principal component analysis demonstrated that there was an obvious difference in the soil microbial community among different treatments, mainly depending on the species of carbohydrates and amino acids.

  4. The prospect of applying chemical elicitors and plant strengtheners to enhance the biological control of crop pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobhy, Islam S; Erb, Matthias; Lou, Yonggen; Turlings, Ted C J

    2014-04-05

    An imminent food crisis reinforces the need for novel strategies to increase crop yields worldwide. Effective control of pest insects should be part of such strategies, preferentially with reduced negative impact on the environment and optimal protection and utilization of existing biodiversity. Enhancing the presence and efficacy of native biological control agents could be one such strategy. Plant strengthener is a generic term for several commercially available compounds or mixtures of compounds that can be applied to cultivated plants in order to 'boost their vigour, resilience and performance'. Studies into the consequences of boosting plant resistance against pests and diseases on plant volatiles have found a surprising and dramatic increase in the plants' attractiveness to parasitic wasps. Here, we summarize the results from these studies and present new results from assays that illustrate the great potential of two commercially available resistance elicitors. We argue that plant strengtheners may currently be the best option to enhance the attractiveness of cultivated plants to biological control agents. Other options, such as the genetic manipulation of the release of specific volatiles may offer future solutions, but in most systems, we still miss fundamental knowledge on which key attractants should be targeted for this approach.

  5. Evaluation of an ethnopharmacologically selected Bhutanese medicinal plants for their major classes of phytochemicals and biological activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wangchuk, Phurpa; Keller, Paul A; Pyne, Stephen G; Taweechotipatr, Malai; Tonsomboon, Aunchalee; Rattanajak, Roonglawan; Kamchonwongpaisan, Sumalee

    2011-09-01

    As many as 229 medicinal plants have been currently used in the Bhutanese Traditional Medicine (BTM) as a chief ingredient of polyherbal formulations and these plants have been individually indicated for treating various types of infections including malaria, tumor, and microbial. We have focused our study only on seven species of these plants. We aim to evaluate the antiplasmodial, antimicrobial, anti-Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and cytotoxicity activities of the seven medicinal plants of Bhutan selected using an ethno-directed bio-rational approach. This study creates a scientific basis for their use in the BTM and gives foundation for further phytochemical and biological evaluations which can result in the discovery of new drug lead compounds. A three stage process was conducted which consisted of: (1) an assessment of a pharmacopoeia and a formulary book of the BTM for their mode of plant uses; (2) selecting 25 anti-infective medicinal plants based on the five established criteria, collecting them, and screening for their major classes of phytochemicals using appropriate test protocols; and (3) finally analyzing the crude extracts of the seven medicinal plants, using the standard test protocols, for their antiplasmodial, antimicrobial, anti-Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and cytotoxicity activities as directed by the ethnopharmacological uses of each plant. Out of 25 medicinal plants screened for their major classes of phytochemicals, the majority contained tannins, alkaloids and flavonoids. Out of the seven plant species investigated for their biological activities, all seven of them exhibited mild antimicrobial properties, five plants gave significant in vitro antiplasmodial activities, two plants gave moderate anti-Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense activity, and one plant showed mild cytotoxicity. Meconopsis simplicifolia showed the highest antiplasmodial activity with IC(50) values of 0.40 μg/ml against TM4/8.2 strain (a wild type chloroquine and

  6. The Effect of Concept Map Using on Student Success in The Teaching of Biology II Subjects Presented in Science Teacher Programme

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tohit GÜNEŞ

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available In this study, the effects of concept maps on meaningful learning of science 2.grade students to 8 biological topics presented in Biology II course has been comparatively investigated with classical method. For this purpose 140 students have been divided into two groups (70 control and 70 experimental and the subjects have been explained with classical method in control group and concept maps have been prepared in experimental group. Before and after the application, both groups received pre-test and post–test. The data were evaluated using by SPSS 11.5 statistical program. And success relations between samplings were determined using by t-test analyzing.According to data, it has been observed that the experimental group were more successful than control group (t=6,48, p< 0.001. It suggests that Concept maps can be used as teaching strategy in some difficult biology subjects.

  7. Temporal dynamics of plant succession in abandoned field in Mediterranean mountain areas: farming terraces and sloping fields (Iberian System, Spain)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nadal-Romero, Estela; Errea, Paz; Lasanta, Teodoro

    2017-04-01

    Cropland abandonment is an important problem in mountain areas worldwide. This process represents the change from an agricultural management to an abandoned land in which a complex plant succession process occurs, with important hydromorphological effects, and consequences in water resources availability and soil erosion. Literature indicates that plant succession depends on multiple natural factors (soil properties, topography, climate, lithology, and distance to natural covers…) and anthropogenic factors (age of abandonment, management of each field during the cultivation period and after the abandonment…). Despite the advances, much is unknown about the vegetation succession, due to the complexity of ecological and social conditions in which land abandonment occurs. Recently, it is shown that only local factors can explain the heterogeneity of the process (Burel and Baudry, 2002; Jouba and Alados, 2012). In this work, we analyze the diversity of vegetation cover in abandonment fields in Cameros Viejo (Iberian System, Spain), related to the different field patterns (terraces and sloping fields) and the age of abandonment. Agricultural lands were delimited using aerial photographs from 1956 and 1978. The current land cover was obtained from SIOSE (Information System of Land Occupation in Spain). According to our cartography, cultivated land occupied as much as 15,491 ha (39% of the area), remaining abandoned 14,505 ha by 1978. Farming terraces occupied 55.9% of the abandoned area, and 44.1% as sloping fields. On the other hand, our cartography highlights the complexity of current land cover of abandoned fields in a landscape matrix of scrubland. Our results suggest that ecological succession is faster in farming terraces than in sloping fields, mostly until scrubland phase is attained. They also suggest that current land cover is better explained by the physical conditions of each field than by the abandonment age. Acknowledgement This research was supported

  8. Natural flightless morphs of the ladybird beetle Adalia bipunctata improve biological control of aphids on single plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lommen, S.T.E.; Middendorp, C.W.; Luijten, C.A.; Schelt, van J.; Brakefield, P.M.; Jong, de P.W.

    2008-01-01

    The challenge of using ladybird beetles for biological control of insect pests such as aphids is that the adult beetles tend to fly away from the host plants. Therefore, flightless ladybirds might improve biocontrol. There are several artificial ways to obtain flightless beetles, but it may be prefe

  9. Population dynamics in wastewater treatment plants with enhanced biological phosphorus removal operated with and without nitrogen removal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lee, N.; Jansen, J.l.C.; Aspegren, H.

    2002-01-01

    The population dynamics of activated sludge in a pilot plant with two activated sludge systems, both designed for enhanced biological phosphorus removal (EBPR), but one of them with (BNP) and the other without (BP) nitrogen removal, was monitored during a period of 2.5 years. The influent water...

  10. An improved method to quantitate mature plant microRNA in biological matrices using periodate treatment and internal control

    Science.gov (United States)

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) ubiquitously exist in microorganisms, plants and animals, and appear to modulate a wide range of critical biological processes. However, no definitive conclusion has been reached regarding the uptake of exogenous dietary small RNAs into mammalian circulation and organs and cross-k...

  11. Non-Western Students' Causal Reasoning about Biologically Adaptive Changes in Humans, Other Animals and Plants: Instructional and Curricular Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mbajiorgu, Ngozika; Anidu, Innocent

    2017-01-01

    Senior secondary school students (N = 360), 14- to 18-year-olds, from the Igbo culture of eastern Nigeria responded to a questionnaire requiring them to give causal explanations of biologically adaptive changes in humans, other animals and plants. A student subsample (n = 36) was, subsequently, selected for in-depth interviews. Significant…

  12. ARADISH - Development of a Standardized Plant Growth Chamber for Experiments in Gravitational Biology Using Ground Based Facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schüler, Oliver; Krause, Lars; Görög, Mark; Hauslage, Jens; Kesseler, Leona; Böhmer, Maik; Hemmersbach, Ruth

    2016-06-01

    Plant development strongly relies on environmental conditions. Growth of plants in Biological Life Support Systems (BLSS), which are a necessity to allow human survival during long-term space exploration missions, poses a particular problem for plant growth, as in addition to the traditional environmental factors, microgravity (or reduced gravity such as on Moon or Mars) and limited gas exchange hamper plant growth. Studying the effects of reduced gravity on plants requires real or simulated microgravity experiments under highly standardized conditions, in order to avoid the influence of other environmental factors. Analysis of a large number of biological replicates, which is necessary for the detection of subtle phenotypical differences, can so far only be achieved in Ground Based Facilities (GBF). Besides different experimental conditions, the usage of a variety of different plant growth chambers was a major factor that led to a lack of reproducibility and comparability in previous studies. We have developed a flexible and customizable plant growth chamber, called ARAbidopsis DISH (ARADISH), which allows plant growth from seed to seedling, being realized in a hydroponic system or on Agar. By developing a special holder, the ARADISH can be used for experiments with Arabidopsis thaliana or a plant with a similar habitus on common GBF hardware, including 2D clinostats and Random Positioning Machines (RPM). The ARADISH growth chamber has a controlled illumination system of red and blue light emitting diodes (LED), which allows the user to apply defined light conditions. As a proof of concept we tested a prototype in a proteomic experiment in which plants were exposed to simulated microgravity or a 90° stimulus. We optimized the design and performed viability tests after several days of growth in the hardware that underline the utility of ARADISH in microgravity research.

  13. Successful Switch to Golimumab for Eosinophilia and Skin Symptoms Related to Multiple Biologics in a Patient with Rheumatoid Arthritis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azuma, Naoto; Matsui, Kiyoshi; Hashimoto, Naoaki; Yoshikawa, Takahiro; Sano, Hajime

    2017-01-01

    Biologics used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) rarely cause eosinophilia. We herein report a patient with RA being treated with infliximab, adalimumab, and tocilizumab who developed eosinophilia with skin symptoms. Interestingly, the marked eosinophilia and skin symptoms did not reappear after the patient's medication was switched to golimumab. In this case, the presence of biologics-specific antibodies suggested that immunogenicity caused the eosinophilia. Therefore, switching to a biologic with a lower immunogenicity was effective. These findings may be helpful for clinicians treating patients with biologics-induced eosinophilia. PMID:28626189

  14. Floristic composition and plant succession on near-surface radioactive-waste-disposal facilities in the Los Alamos National Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tierney, G.D.; Foxx, T.S.

    1982-03-01

    Since 1946, low-level radioactive waste has been buried in shallow landfills within the confines of the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Five of these sites were studied for plant composition and successional patterns by reconnaissance and vegetation mapping. The data show a slow rate of recovery for all sites, regardless of age, in both the pinon-juniper and ponderosa pine communities. The sites are not comparable in succession or composition because of location and previous land use. The two oldest sites have the highest species diversity and the only mature trees. All sites allowed to revegetate naturally tend to be colonized by the same species that originally surrounded the sites. Sites on historic fields are colonized by the old field flora, whereas those in areas disturbed only by grazing are revegetated by the local native flora.

  15. Benchmarking biological nutrient removal in wastewater treatment plants: influence of mathematical model assumptions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores-Alsina, Xavier; Gernaey, Krist V; Jeppsson, Ulf

    2012-01-01

    This paper examines the effect of different model assumptions when describing biological nutrient removal (BNR) by the activated sludge models (ASM) 1, 2d & 3. The performance of a nitrogen removal (WWTP1) and a combined nitrogen and phosphorus removal (WWTP2) benchmark wastewater treatment plant was compared for a series of model assumptions. Three different model approaches describing BNR are considered. In the reference case, the original model implementations are used to simulate WWTP1 (ASM1 & 3) and WWTP2 (ASM2d). The second set of models includes a reactive settler, which extends the description of the non-reactive TSS sedimentation and transport in the reference case with the full set of ASM processes. Finally, the third set of models is based on including electron acceptor dependency of biomass decay rates for ASM1 (WWTP1) and ASM2d (WWTP2). The results show that incorporation of a reactive settler: (1) increases the hydrolysis of particulates; (2) increases the overall plant's denitrification efficiency by reducing the S(NOx) concentration at the bottom of the clarifier; (3) increases the oxidation of COD compounds; (4) increases X(OHO) and X(ANO) decay; and, finally, (5) increases the growth of X(PAO) and formation of X(PHA,Stor) for ASM2d, which has a major impact on the whole P removal system. Introduction of electron acceptor dependent decay leads to a substantial increase of the concentration of X(ANO), X(OHO) and X(PAO) in the bottom of the clarifier. The paper ends with a critical discussion of the influence of the different model assumptions, and emphasizes the need for a model user to understand the significant differences in simulation results that are obtained when applying different combinations of 'standard' models.

  16. Floral biology of Senecio macrophyllus M. BIEB. (Asteraceae, a rare Central European steppe plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bożenna Czarnecka

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Knowledge of the flowering phase and plant pollination ecology is very important for understanding the life history of long-lived perennials. In the case of rare species, the information may have implications for conservation practices. Our studies on flower morphology and blooming biology of the vulnerable plant Senecio macrophyllus M. BIEB. were conducted in situ (flowering, activity of insect visitors in the largest population in SE Poland and in laboratory (light and scanning electron microscopy. The disc florets open diurnally with most intensive anthesis in the early afternoon and attract insect visitors with nectar and pollen. In highly protandrous disc florets, pollen viability decreases in time, whereas stigma receptivity increases. The upper part of the pistil forms a brush-like pollen presenter, covered with unicellular trichomes with chromoplasts. Pollen presentation lasts 4–11 hours per floret, and 8 days in a single head, the main function of which is to extend the availability of male gamets for reproduction. The number of florets per head, the head size, and the number of pollen grains produced per anther, and the pollen grain viability differed significantly between microsites. The finding indicates that, apart from the biotic factors, abiotic conditions may considerably influence generative reproduction of the species. In the study area, the principal visitors of S. macrophyllus flowers were Hymenoptera, with predominance of Apis mellifera (53.4% of visits. The remarkable share of butterflies (13.9% recognized as the long-distance moving insects may improve the genetic variability of individuals within a fragmented population. A more detailed study is necessary to explain the role of insect visitors in effective pollination and in gene transfer between patches. The assessment of optimal conditions for the generative reproduction is fundamental for the in situ conservation of this rare species.

  17. A reconstruction of Atlantic Central African biomes and forest succession stages derived from modern pollen data and plant functional types

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Lebamba

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available New detailed vegetation reconstructions are proposed in Atlantic Central Africa from a modern pollen data set derived from 199 sites (Cameroon, Gabon and Congo including 131 new sites. In this study, the concept of plant functional classification is improved with new and more detailed plant functional types (PFTs and new aggregations of pollen taxa. Using the biomisation method, we reconstructed (1 modern potential biomes and (2 potential succession stages of forest regeneration, a new approach in Atlantic Central African vegetation dynamics and ecosystem functioning reconstruction. When compared to local vegetation, potential biomes are correctly reconstructed (97.5% of the sites and tropical evergreen to semi-evergreen forest (TRFO biome is well identified from semi-deciduous forest (TSFO biome. When the potential biomes are superimposed on the White's vegetation map, only 76.4% of the sites are correctly reconstructed. But using botanical data, correspondence and cluster analyses, the 43 sites from Congo (Mayombe evidence more affinities with those of central Gabon and so they can also be considered as correctly reconstructed as TRFO biome and White's map must be revised. In terms of potential succession stages of forest regeneration, the mature forest (TMFO is well differentiated from the secondary forest (TSFE, but inside this latter group, the young and the pioneer stages are not clearly identified due probably to their low sampling representation. Moreover, linked to their progressive and mosaic character, the boundaries between two forest biomes or two forest stages are not clearly detected and need also a more intensive sampling in such transitions.

  18. Ex vitro composite plants: an inexpensive, rapid method for root biology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Collier, Ray; Fuchs, Beth; Walter, Nathalie; Kevin Lutke, William; Taylor, Christopher G

    2005-01-01

    .... The novel, rapid and inexpensive ex vitro method for producing composite plants described in this report represents a significant advance over existing composite plant induction protocols, which rely...

  19. From systems biology to photosynthesis and whole-plant modeling: a conceptual model for integrating multi-scale networks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weston, David [ORNL; Hanson, Paul J [ORNL; Norby, Richard J [ORNL; Tuskan, Gerald A [ORNL; Wullschleger, Stan D [ORNL

    2012-01-01

    Network analysis is now a common statistical tool for molecular biologists. Network algorithms are readily used to model gene, protein and metabolic correlations providing insight into pathways driving biological phenomenon. One output from such an analysis is a candidate gene list that can be responsible, in part, for the biological process of interest. The question remains, however, as to whether molecular network analysis can be used to inform process models at higher levels of biological organization. In our previous work, transcriptional networks derived from three plant species were constructed, interrogated for orthology and then correlated to photosynthetic inhibition at elevated temperature. One unique aspect of that study was the link from co-expression networks to net photosynthesis. In this addendum, we propose a conceptual model where traditional network analysis can be linked to whole-plant models thereby informing predictions on key processes such as photosynthesis, nutrient uptake and assimilation, and C partitioning.

  20. Bacteria used in the biological control of plant-parasitic nematodes: populations, mechanisms of action, and future prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tian, Baoyu; Yang, Jinkui; Zhang, Ke-Qin

    2007-08-01

    As a group of important natural enemies of nematode pests, nematophagous bacteria exhibit diverse modes of action: these include parasitizing; producing toxins, antibiotics, or enzymes; competing for nutrients; inducing systemic resistance of plants; and promoting plant health. They act synergistically on nematodes through the direct suppression of nematodes, promoting plant growth, and facilitating the rhizosphere colonization and activity of microbial antagonists. This review details the nematophagous bacteria known to date, including parasitic bacteria, opportunistic parasitic bacteria, rhizobacteria, Cry protein-forming bacteria, endophytic bacteria and symbiotic bacteria. We focus on recent research developments concerning their pathogenic mechanisms at the biochemical and molecular levels. Increased understanding of the molecular basis of the various pathogenic mechanisms of the nematophagous bacteria could potentially enhance their value as effective biological control agents. We also review a number of molecular biological approaches currently used in the study of bacterial pathogenesis in nematodes. We discuss their merits, limitations and potential uses.

  1. Successes with Reversing the Negative Student Attitudes Developed in Typical Biology Classes for 8th and 10th Grade Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacieminoglu, Esme; Ali, Mohamed Moustafa; Oztas, Fulya; Yager, Robert E.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to compare changes in attitudes of students about their study of biology in the classes thought by five biology teachers who experienced an Iowa Chautauqua workshop with and two non-Chautauqua teachers who had no experience with any professional development program. The results indicated that there are significant…

  2. Biological effects of plant residues with contrasting chemical compositions on plant and soil under humid tropical conditions.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tian, G.

    1992-01-01

    A study on plant residues with contrasting chemical compositions was conducted under laboratory, growth chamber and humid tropical field conditions to understand the function of the soil fauna in the breakdown of plant residues, the cycling of nutrients, in particular nitrogen, and the performance o

  3. Biologic

    CERN Document Server

    Kauffman, L H

    2002-01-01

    In this paper we explore the boundary between biology and the study of formal systems (logic). In the end, we arrive at a summary formalism, a chapter in "boundary mathematics" where there are not only containers but also extainers ><, entities open to interaction and distinguishing the space that they are not. The boundary algebra of containers and extainers is to biologic what boolean algebra is to classical logic. We show how this formalism encompasses significant parts of the logic of DNA replication, the Dirac formalism for quantum mechanics, formalisms for protein folding and the basic structure of the Temperley Lieb algebra at the foundations of topological invariants of knots and links.

  4. Genetic improvement of leaf photosynthesis and intrinsic water use efficiency in C3 plants: Why so much little success?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flexas, J

    2016-10-01

    There is an urgent need for simultaneously increasing photosynthesis/yields and water use efficiency (WUE) in C3 crops. Potentially, this can be achieved by genetic manipulation of the key traits involved. However, despite significant efforts in the past two decades very limited success has been achieved. Here I argue that this is mostly due to the fact that single gene/single trait approaches have been used thus far. Photosynthesis models demonstrate that only limited improving of photosynthesis can be expected by large improvements of any of its single limiting factors, i.e. stomatal conductance, mesophyll conductance, and the biochemical capacity for photosynthesis, the latter co-limited by Rubisco and the orchestrated activity of thylakoid electron transport and the Calvin cycle enzymes. Accordingly, only limited improvements of photosynthesis have been obtained by genetic manipulation of any of these single factors. In addition, improving photosynthesis by genetic manipulation in general reduced WUE, and vice-versa, and in many cases pleiotropic effects appear that cancel out some of the expected benefits. I propose that success in genetic manipulation for simultaneous improvement of photosynthesis and WUE efficiency may take longer than suggested in previous reports, and that it can be achieved only by joint projects addressing multi-gene manipulation for simultaneous alterations of all the limiting factors of photosynthesis, including the often neglected phloem capacity for loading and transport the expected surplus of carbohydrates in plants with improved photosynthesis.

  5. Success factors for the hydroelectric power plants reformation: engineering and work planning; Fatores de sucesso para reforma de usinas hidreletricas. Engenharia e planejamento das obras

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nakamura, George; Amaral, Luiz Antonio Franco do; Campos, Jose Ayres de; Campos, Maria Tereza F.R. de [CNEC Engenharia S.A., Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil)]. E-mail: jayres@cnec.com.br

    2000-07-01

    The detailed description of the interventions in the power plant involving the diagnosis, project, specifications, acquisition, prior assembly, units shutdown, remounting, tests, operation, etc, based on data bases an solid information, are vital factors for the success of the reformation work of hydroelectric power plants. The main activities to be developed are: implantation integrated through the project interfaces management; characterization of critical path of the works; description and characterization of the power plant intervention stages. This paper generically describes this technology, based on the CNEC engineering company studies on hydroelectric power plants reformation.

  6. Next Generation Protein Interactomes for Plant Systems Biology and Biomass Feedstock Research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ecker, Joseph Robert [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Trigg, Shelly [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Univ. of California, San Diego, CA (United States). Biological Sciences Dept.; Garza, Renee [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Song, Haili [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; MacWilliams, Andrew [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Nery, Joseph [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Reina, Joaquin [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Bartlett, Anna [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Castanon, Rosa [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Goubil, Adeline [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Feeney, Joseph [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; O' Malley, Ronan [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Huang, Shao-shan Carol [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Zhang, Zhuzhu [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.; Galli, Mary [The Salk Inst. for Biological Studies, La Jolla, CA (United States). Genome Analysis and Plant Biology Lab.

    2016-11-30

    Biofuel crop cultivation is a necessary step in heading towards a sustainable future, making their genomic studies a priority. While technology platforms that currently exist for studying non-model crop species, like switch-grass or sorghum, have yielded large quantities of genomic and expression data, still a large gap exists between molecular mechanism and phenotype. The aspect of molecular activity at the level of protein-protein interactions has recently begun to bridge this gap, providing a more global perspective. Interactome analysis has defined more specific functional roles of proteins based on their interaction partners, neighborhoods, and other network features, making it possible to distinguish unique modules of immune response to different plant pathogens(Jiang, Dong, and Zhang 2016). As we work towards cultivating heartier biofuel crops, interactome data will lead to uncovering crop-specific defense and development networks. However, the collection of protein interaction data has been limited to expensive, time-consuming, hard-to-scale assays that mostly require cloned ORF collections. For these reasons, we have successfully developed a highly scalable, economical, and sensitive yeast two-hybrid assay, ProCREate, that can be universally applied to generate proteome-wide primary interactome data. ProCREate enables en masse pooling and massively paralleled sequencing for the identification of interacting proteins by exploiting Cre-lox recombination. ProCREate can be used to screen ORF/cDNA libraries from feedstock plant tissues. The interactome data generated will yield deeper insight into many molecular processes and pathways that can be used to guide improvement of feedstock productivity and sustainability.

  7. In vivo biochemistry: applications for small molecule biosensors in plant biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Alexander M; Grossmann, Guido; Danielson, Jonas Åh; Sosso, Davide; Chen, Li-Qing; Ho, Cheng-Hsun; Frommer, Wolf B

    2013-06-01

    Revolutionary new technologies, namely in the areas of DNA sequencing and molecular imaging, continue to impact new discoveries in plant science and beyond. For decades we have been able to determine properties of enzymes, receptors and transporters in vitro or in heterologous systems, and more recently been able to analyze their regulation at the transcriptional level, to use GFP reporters for obtaining insights into cellular and subcellular localization, and tp measure ion and metabolite levels with unprecedented precision using mass spectrometry. However, we lack key information on the location and dynamics of the substrates of enzymes, receptors and transporters, and on the regulation of these proteins in their cellular environment. Such information can now be obtained by transitioning from in vitro to in vivo biochemistry using biosensors. Genetically encoded fluorescent protein-based sensors for ion and metabolite dynamics provide highly resolved spatial and temporal information, and are complemented by sensors for pH, redox, voltage, and tension. They serve as powerful tools for identifying missing processes (e.g., glucose transport across ER membranes), components (e.g., SWEET sugar transporters for cellular sugar efflux), and signaling networks (e.g., from systematic screening of mutants that affect sugar transport or cytosolic and vacuolar pH). Combined with the knowledge of properties of enzymes and transporters and their interactions with the regulatory machinery, biosensors promise to be key diagnostic tools for systems and synthetic biology. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Testing surrogacy assumptions: can threatened and endangered plants be grouped by biological similarity and abundances?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Che-Castaldo, Judy P; Neel, Maile C

    2012-01-01

    There is renewed interest in implementing surrogate species approaches in conservation planning due to the large number of species in need of management but limited resources and data. One type of surrogate approach involves selection of one or a few species to represent a larger group of species requiring similar management actions, so that protection and persistence of the selected species would result in conservation of the group of species. However, among the criticisms of surrogate approaches is the need to test underlying assumptions, which remain rarely examined. In this study, we tested one of the fundamental assumptions underlying use of surrogate species in recovery planning: that there exist groups of threatened and endangered species that are sufficiently similar to warrant similar management or recovery criteria. Using a comprehensive database of all plant species listed under the U.S. Endangered Species Act and tree-based random forest analysis, we found no evidence of species groups based on a set of distributional and biological traits or by abundances and patterns of decline. Our results suggested that application of surrogate approaches for endangered species recovery would be unjustified. Thus, conservation planning focused on individual species and their patterns of decline will likely be required to recover listed species.

  9. High and stable substrate specificities of microorganisms in enhanced biological phosphorus removal plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kindaichi, Tomonori; Nierychlo, Marta; Kragelund, Caroline; Nielsen, Jeppe Lund; Nielsen, Per Halkjaer

    2013-06-01

    Microbial communities are typically characterized by conditions of nutrient limitation so the availability of the resources is likely a key factor in the niche differentiation across all species and in the regulation of the community structure. In this study we have investigated whether four species exhibit any in situ short-term changes in substrate uptake pattern when exposed to variations in substrate and growth conditions. Microautoradiography was combined with fluorescence in situ hybridization to investigate in situ cell-specific substrate uptake profiles of four probe-defined coexisting species in a wastewater treatment plant with enhanced biological phosphorus removal. These were the filamentous 'Candidatus Microthrix' and Caldilinea (type 0803), the polyphosphate-accumulating organism 'Candidatus Accumulibacter', and the denitrifying Azoarcus. The experimental conditions mimicked the conditions potentially encountered in the respective environment (starvation, high/low substrate concentration, induction with specific substrates, and single/multiple substrates). The results showed that each probe-defined species exhibited very distinct and constant substrate uptake profile in time and space, which hardly changed under any of the conditions tested. Such niche partitioning implies that a significant change in substrate composition will be reflected in a changed community structure rather than the substrate uptake response from the different species. © 2012 Society for Applied Microbiology and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  10. Optimization of a full-scale Unitank wastewater treatment plant for biological phosphorus removal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Zhen; Xing, Can; Wu, Zhichao; Tong, Fei; Wang, Junru

    2014-01-01

    The Unitank process combines the advantages of traditional continuous-flow activated sludge processes and sequencing batch reactors, and has been extensively employed in many wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in China. Biological phosphorus removal (BPR) of a full-scale Unitank WWTP was optimized by increasing anaerobic time from 80 to 120 min in an operation cycle of 360 min and reducing solid retention time (SRT) from 21.3 to 13.1 d. The BPR efficiency of the full-scale Unitank system increased from 63.8% (SRT of 21.3 d) to 83.2% for a SRT of 13.1 d. When the anaerobic time increased from 80 to 120 min, the net anaerobic phosphorus release amount increased from 0.25 to 1.06 mg L(-1), and sludge phosphorus content rose from 13.8 to 15.0 mgP x (gSS)(-1). During half an operation cycle, the average specific phosphorus release rate increased from 0.097mgP x (gVSS x h)(-1) in 0-40 min to 0.825 mgP x (gVSS x h)(-1) in 40-60 min. Reducing SRT and increasing anaerobic time account for 84.6% and 15.4% in the total increment of phosphorus removal of 1.15 mgL(-1).

  11. Report on the biological monitoring program at Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant December 1993 to December 1994

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kszos, L.A. [ed.

    1996-05-01

    On September 24, 1987, the Commonwealth of Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet issued an Agreed Order that required the development of a Biological Monitoring Program (BMP) for the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP). The PGDP BMP was implemented in 1987 by the University of Kentucky. Research staff of the Environmental Sciences Division (ESD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) served as reviewers and advisers to the University of Kentucky. Beginning in fall 1991, ESD added data collection and report preparation to its responsibilities for the PGDP BMP. The goals of BMP are to (1) demonstrate that the effluent limitations established for PGDP protect and maintain the use of Little Bayou and Big Bayou creeks for growth and propagation of fish and other aquatic life, (2) characterize potential environmental impacts, (3) document the effects of pollution abatement facilities on stream biota, and (4) recommend any program improvements that would increase effluent treatability. In September 1992, a renewed Kentucky Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (KPDES) permit was issued to PGDP. The BMP for PGDP consists of three major tasks: (1) effluent and ambient toxicity monitoring, (2) bioaccumulation studies, and (3) ecological surveys of stream communities (i.e., benthic macroinvertebrates and fish). This report includes ESD activities occurring from December 1993 to December 1994, although activities conducted outside this time period are included as appropriate.

  12. Report on the biological monitoring program at Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant, January--December 1996

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kszos, L.A. [ed.; Konetsky, B.K.; Peterson, M.J.; Petrie, R.B.; Ryon, M.G.; Smith, J.G.; Southworth, G.R.

    1997-06-01

    On September 24, 1987, the Commonwealth of Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet issued an Agreed Order that required the development of a Biological Monitoring Program (BMP) for the Paducah Gaseous diffusion Plant (PGDP). The PGDP BMP was conducted by the University of Kentucky Between 1987 and 1992 and by staff of the Environmental Sciences Division (ESD) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) from 1991 to present. The goals of BMP are to (1) demonstrate that the effluent limitations established for PGDP protect and maintain the use of Little Bayou and Big Bayou creeks for growth and propagation of fish and other aquatic life, (2) characterize potential environmental impacts, and (3) document the effects of pollution abatement facilities on stream. The BMP for PGDP consists of three major tasks: (1) effluent toxicity monitoring, (2) bioaccumulation studies, and (3) ecological surveys of stream communities (i.e., benthic macroinvertebrates and fish). This report focuses on ESD activities occurring from January 1996 to December 1996, although activities conducted outside this time period are included as appropriate.

  13. Pilot plant study on ozonation and biological activated carbon process for drinking water treatment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    A study on advanced drinking water treatment was conducted in a pilot scale plant taking water from conventional treatment process. Ozonation-biological activated carbon process (O3-BAC) and granular activated carbon process (GAC) were evaluated based on the following parameters: CODMn, UV254, total organic carbon (TOC), assimilable organic carbon (AOC) and biodegradable dissolved organic carbon (BDOC). In this test, the average removal rates of CODMn , UV254 and TOC in O3-BAC were18.2%, 9.0% and 10.2% higher on (AOC) than in GAC, respectively. Ozonation increased 19.3-57.6 μg Acetate-C/L in AOC-P17,45.6-130.6 μg Acetate-C/L in AOC-NOX and 0.1-0.5 mg/L in BDOC with ozone doses of 2-8 mg/L. The optimum ozone dose for maximum AOC formation was 3 mgO3/L. BAC filtration was effective process to improve biostability.

  14. Biological Denitrification of High Nitrate Processing Wastewaters from Explosives Production Plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cyplik, Paweł; Marecik, Roman; Piotrowska-Cyplik, Agnieszka; Olejnik, Anna; Drożdżyńska, Agnieszka; Chrzanowski, Lukasz

    2012-05-01

    Wastewater samples originating from an explosives production plant (3,000 mg N l(-1) nitrate, 4.8 mg l(-1) nitroglycerin, 1.9 mg l(-1) nitroglycol and 1,200 mg l(-1) chemical oxygen demand) were subjected to biological purification. An attempt to completely remove nitrate and to decrease the chemical oxygen demand was carried out under anaerobic conditions. A soil isolated microbial consortium capable of biodegrading various organic compounds and reduce nitrate to atmospheric nitrogen under anaerobic conditions was used. Complete removal of nitrates with simultaneous elimination of nitroglycerin and ethylene glycol dinitrate (nitroglycol) was achieved as a result of the conducted research. Specific nitrate reduction rate was estimated at 12.3 mg N g(-1) VSS h(-1). Toxicity of wastewater samples during the denitrification process was studied by measuring the activity of dehydrogenases in the activated sludge. Mutagenicity was determined by employing the Ames test. The maximum mutagenic activity did not exceed 0.5. The obtained results suggest that the studied wastewater samples did not exhibit mutagenic properties.

  15. The impact of environmental stress on male reproductive development in plants: biological processes and molecular mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Storme, Nico; Geelen, Danny

    2014-01-01

    In plants, male reproductive development is extremely sensitive to adverse climatic environments and (a)biotic stress. Upon exposure to stress, male gametophytic organs often show morphological, structural and metabolic alterations that typically lead to meiotic defects or premature spore abortion and male reproductive sterility. Depending on the type of stress involved (e.g. heat, cold, drought) and the duration of stress exposure, the underlying cellular defect is highly variable and either involves cytoskeletal alterations, tapetal irregularities, altered sugar utilization, aberrations in auxin metabolism, accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS; oxidative stress) or the ectopic induction of programmed cell death (PCD). In this review, we present the critically stress-sensitive stages of male sporogenesis (meiosis) and male gametogenesis (microspore development), and discuss the corresponding biological processes involved and the resulting alterations in male reproduction. In addition, this review also provides insights into the molecular and/or hormonal regulation of the environmental stress sensitivity of male reproduction and outlines putative interaction(s) between the different processes involved.

  16. Integration into plant biology and soil science has provided insights into the total environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shao, Hongbo; Lu, Haiying; Xu, Gang; Marian, Brestic

    2017-02-01

    The total environment includes 5 closely-linking circles, in which biosphere and lithosphere are the active core. As global population increases and urbanization process accelerates, arable land is gradually decreasing under global climate change and the pressure of various types of environmental pollution. This case is especially for China. Land is the most important resources for human beings' survival. How to increase and manage arable land is the key for sustainable agriculture development. China has extensive marshy land that can be reclamated for the better potential land resources under the pre- condition of protecting the environment, which will be a good way for enlarging globally and managing arable land. Related studies have been conducted in China for the past 30years and now many results with obvious practical efficiency have been obtained. For summarizing these results, salt-soil will be the main target and related contents such as nutrient transport, use types, biodiversity and interactions with plants from molecular biology to ecology will be covered, in which the interactions among biosphere, lithosphere, atmosphere and anthroposphere will be focused on. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Development of a strategy for biological monitoring in a chemical plant producing 3,3'-dichlorobenzidine dihydrochloride.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knoell, Kristian F; Will, Norbert; Leng, Gabriele; Selinski, Silvia; Hengstler, Jan G; Golka, Klaus; Bolt, Hermann M

    2012-01-01

    In a chemical plant in Germany producing 3,3'-dichlorobenzidine dihydrochloride for the manufacture of colorants, blood and urine samples were taken for biological monitoring. 3,3'-Dichlorobenzidine (DBZ) was analyzed in urine by thin-layer chromatography and subsequently further combined with analysis of adducts of 3,3'-DBZ in hemoglobin. Data highlight current ranges of industrial exposure to 3,3'-DBZ in Germany and demonstrate the applicability of biological monitoring to minimize this exposure. Effective biological monitoring was achieved by a combination of monitoring hemoglobin adducts with spot samplings of urinary 3,3'-DBZ excretion in cases of reported exposure periods. Data presented might help to identify biological guidance values (BGV/BAR) for 3,3'-DBZ-exposed individuals.

  18. Biological effects of native and exotic plant residues on plant growth, microbial biomass and N availability under controlled conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Diallo, Mariama-Dalanda; Duponnois, Robin; Guisse, A.; Sall, Saïdou; Chotte, Jean-Luc; Thioulouse, J.

    2006-01-01

    The leaf litter of six tropical tree species (Acacia holosericea, Acacia tortilis, Azadirachta indica, Casuarina equisetifolia, Cordyla pinnata and Faidherbia albida) frequently used in agroforestry plantations in Sahelian and Soudano-Sahelian areas were tested for their influence on soil nitrogen content, microbial biomass and plant growth under controlled greenhouse conditions. Half of the soil was planted with onion (Allium cepa L.) seedlings and the other half was not. Two herbaceous spec...

  19. ePlant and the 3D data display initiative: integrative systems biology on the world wide web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fucile, Geoffrey; Di Biase, David; Nahal, Hardeep; La, Garon; Khodabandeh, Shokoufeh; Chen, Yani; Easley, Kante; Christendat, Dinesh; Kelley, Lawrence; Provart, Nicholas J

    2011-01-10

    Visualization tools for biological data are often limited in their ability to interactively integrate data at multiple scales. These computational tools are also typically limited by two-dimensional displays and programmatic implementations that require separate configurations for each of the user's computing devices and recompilation for functional expansion. Towards overcoming these limitations we have developed "ePlant" (http://bar.utoronto.ca/eplant) - a suite of open-source world wide web-based tools for the visualization of large-scale data sets from the model organism Arabidopsis thaliana. These tools display data spanning multiple biological scales on interactive three-dimensional models. Currently, ePlant consists of the following modules: a sequence conservation explorer that includes homology relationships and single nucleotide polymorphism data, a protein structure model explorer, a molecular interaction network explorer, a gene product subcellular localization explorer, and a gene expression pattern explorer. The ePlant's protein structure explorer module represents experimentally determined and theoretical structures covering >70% of the Arabidopsis proteome. The ePlant framework is accessed entirely through a web browser, and is therefore platform-independent. It can be applied to any model organism. To facilitate the development of three-dimensional displays of biological data on the world wide web we have established the "3D Data Display Initiative" (http://3ddi.org).

  20. ePlant and the 3D data display initiative: integrative systems biology on the world wide web.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey Fucile

    Full Text Available Visualization tools for biological data are often limited in their ability to interactively integrate data at multiple scales. These computational tools are also typically limited by two-dimensional displays and programmatic implementations that require separate configurations for each of the user's computing devices and recompilation for functional expansion. Towards overcoming these limitations we have developed "ePlant" (http://bar.utoronto.ca/eplant - a suite of open-source world wide web-based tools for the visualization of large-scale data sets from the model organism Arabidopsis thaliana. These tools display data spanning multiple biological scales on interactive three-dimensional models. Currently, ePlant consists of the following modules: a sequence conservation explorer that includes homology relationships and single nucleotide polymorphism data, a protein structure model explorer, a molecular interaction network explorer, a gene product subcellular localization explorer, and a gene expression pattern explorer. The ePlant's protein structure explorer module represents experimentally determined and theoretical structures covering >70% of the Arabidopsis proteome. The ePlant framework is accessed entirely through a web browser, and is therefore platform-independent. It can be applied to any model organism. To facilitate the development of three-dimensional displays of biological data on the world wide web we have established the "3D Data Display Initiative" (http://3ddi.org.

  1. The potential of text mining in data integration and network biology for plant research: a case study on Arabidopsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Landeghem, Sofie; De Bodt, Stefanie; Drebert, Zuzanna J; Inzé, Dirk; Van de Peer, Yves

    2013-03-01

    Despite the availability of various data repositories for plant research, a wealth of information currently remains hidden within the biomolecular literature. Text mining provides the necessary means to retrieve these data through automated processing of texts. However, only recently has advanced text mining methodology been implemented with sufficient computational power to process texts at a large scale. In this study, we assess the potential of large-scale text mining for plant biology research in general and for network biology in particular using a state-of-the-art text mining system applied to all PubMed abstracts and PubMed Central full texts. We present extensive evaluation of the textual data for Arabidopsis thaliana, assessing the overall accuracy of this new resource for usage in plant network analyses. Furthermore, we combine text mining information with both protein-protein and regulatory interactions from experimental databases. Clusters of tightly connected genes are delineated from the resulting network, illustrating how such an integrative approach is essential to grasp the current knowledge available for Arabidopsis and to uncover gene information through guilt by association. All large-scale data sets, as well as the manually curated textual data, are made publicly available, hereby stimulating the application of text mining data in future plant biology studies.

  2. Biological management of Sclerotinia sclerotiorum in pea using plant growth promoting microbial consortium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jain, Akansha; Singh, Akanksha; Singh, Surendra; Singh, Harikesh Bahadur

    2015-08-01

    The beneficial plant-microbe interactions play crucial roles in protection against large number of plant pathogens causing disease. The present study aims to investigate the growth promoting traits induced by beneficial microbes namely Pseudomonas aeruginosa PJHU15, Trichoderma harzianum TNHU27, and Bacillus subtilis BHHU100 treated singly and in combinations under greenhouse and field conditions to control Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. Plants treated with three microbe consortium enhanced plant growth maximally both in the presence and absence of the pathogen. Increase in plant length, total biomass, number of leaves, nodules and secondary roots, total chlorophyll and carotenoid content, and yield were recorded in plants treated with microbial consortia. Also, a decrease in plant mortality was observed in plants treated with microbial consortia in comparison to untreated control plants challenged with S. sclerotiorum. Furthermore, the decrease in disease of all the treatments can be associated with differential improvement of growth induced in pea.

  3. Assessing Soil Biological Properties of Natural and Planted Forests in the Malaysian Tropical Lowland Dipterocarp Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daljit S. Karam

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Problem statement: A study was conducted to evaluate and compare the soil biological properties of a natural forest and an 18-year-old stand of Shorea leprosula in Chikus Forest Reserve, Perak, Malaysia. Approach: Soils were sampled at depths of 0-15 cm (topsoil and 15-30 cm (subsoil in six subplots (20×20 m of natural forest (C1 and of a planted S. leprosula (C2 plot. Fresh composite soil samples were kept in UV-sterilized polyethylene bags prior to analysis in the laboratory. The microbial population count was determined using a spread-plate count technique. The microbial enzymatic activity was elucidated using a Fluorescein Diacetate (FDA hydrolysis assay; microbial biomass was extracted using a rapid chloroform fumigation extraction method. The Microbial Biomass C (MBC was determined by wet dichromate oxidation; Kjeldahl digestion and a distillation method were used for evaluation of Microbial Biomass N (MBN. Results: Results indicate that only the microbial biomass N and the population count in the soil at the 0-15 cm depth were found to be higher in C1 compared to C2. The higher microbial population count in the soil at the 0-15 cm depth of C1 compared to C2 was enhanced by the large amount of organic matter that serves as a suitable medium for soil microbial growth. The higher MBN in the C1 soil was also influenced by the high content of organic material available that encourages activities of decomposing bacteria to take place. Similarities in the soil biological properties of the plots with regard to enzymatic activity and microbial biomass Care believed to be influenced by the same topographic gradient. The higher MBC/MBN ratios found in soils of C2 compared to C1 were due to the low availability of N compared to C, might result from N utilization by soil microbes for organic material decomposition. Conclusion: There are similarities in microbial enzymatic activity and biomass C, but not in microbial population counts and biomass N

  4. Decommissioning samples from the Ft. Lewis, WA, solvent refined coal pilot plant: chemical analysis and biological testing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Weimer, W.C.; Wright, C.W.

    1985-10-01

    This report presents the results from chemical analyses and limited biological assays of three sets of samples from the Ft. Lewis, WA solvent refined coal (SRC) pilot plant. The samples were collected during the process of decommissioning this facility. Chemical composition was determined for chemical class fractions of the samples by using high-resolution gas chromatography (GC), high-resolution GC/mass spectrometry (MS) and high-resolution MS. Biological activity was measuring using both the histidine reversion microbial mutagenicity assay with Salmonella typhimurium, TA98 and an initiation/promotion mouse-skin tumorigenicity assay. 19 refs., 7 figs., 27 tabs.

  5. Report of biological investigations at the Los Medanos Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) area of New Mexico during FY 1978

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Best, T.L.; Neuhauser, S. (eds.)

    1980-03-01

    The US Department of Energy is considering the construction of a Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in Eddy County, NM. This location is approximately 40 km east of Carlsbad, NM. Biological studies during FY 1978 were concentrated within a 5-mi radius of drill hole ERDA 9. Additional study areas have been established at other sites in the vicinity, e.g., the Gnome site, the salt lakes and several stations along the Pecos River southward from Carlsbad, NM, to the dam at Red Bluff Reservoir in Texas. The precise locations of all study areas are presented and their biology discussed.

  6. EuroFIR-BASIS - a combined composition and biological activity database for bioactive compounds in plant-based foods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gry, Jørn; Black, Lucinda; Eriksen, Folmer Damsted

    2007-01-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that certain non-nutrient bioactive compounds promote optimal human health and reduce the risk of chronic disease. An Internet-deployed database, EuroFIR-BASIS, which uniquely combines food composition and biological effects data for plant-based bioactive compounds......, is being developed. The database covers multiple compound classes and 330 major food plants and their edible parts with data sourced from quality-assessed, peer-reviewed literature. The database will be a valuable resource for food regulatory and advisory bodies, risk authorities, epidemiologists...... and researchers interested in diet and health relationships, and product developers within the food industry....

  7. Oxalotrophy, a widespread trait of plant-associated Burkholderia species, is involved in successful root colonization of lupin and maize by Burkholderia phytofirmans.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas eKost

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Plant roots and shoots harbour complex bacterial communities. Early seed and plantlet colonization plays a key role in determining which bacterial populations will successfully invade plant tissues, yet the mechanisms enabling plants to select for beneficial rather than harmful populations are largely unknown. In this study, we demonstrate a role of oxalate as a determinant in this selection process, using members of the genus Burkholderia as model organisms. Oxalotrophy, i.e. the ability to use oxalate as a carbon source, was found to be a property strictly associated with plant-beneficial species of the Burkholderia genus, while plant pathogenic (B. glumae, B. plantarii or human opportunistic pathogens (Burkholderia cepacia complex strains were unable to degrade oxalate. We further show that oxalotrophy is required for successful plant colonization by the broad host endophyte Burkholderia phytofirmans PsJN: an engineered Δoxc mutant, which lost the ability to grow on oxalate, was significantly impaired in early colonization of both lupin and maize compared with the wild-type. This work suggests that in addition to the role of oxalate in heavy metal tolerance of plants and in virulence of phytopathogenic fungi, it is also involved in specifically recruiting plant-beneficial members from complex bacterial communities.

  8. Biology of the Huanglongbing vector Diaphorina citri (Hemiptera: Liviidae) on different host plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, G R; Diniz, A J F; Parra, J R P

    2014-04-01

    Although many studies have been conducted on the development and reproductive potential of Diaphorina citri Kuwayama, 1908 (Hemiptera: Liviidae) in different host species, few have evaluated these parameters on different varieties of the same host species. This study evaluated the influence of five commercial varieties of citrus (Citrus spp. L.)--Hamlin, Natal, Pêra, Ponkan, and Valencia-and orange jasmine [Murraya exotica (L.) Jack] on the development of D. citri. Survival rates for the egg stage were highest on orange jasmine (85.7%) and on Valencia (83.3%). The lowest viability of the nymphal stage was also observed on Hamlin, averaging 57.4%. Values for total viability ranged from 65.9 to 32.6%, and were highest on Valencia. The longest egg-adult development time was on Natal, with a mean of 18.4 d; the shortest total development time was on orange jasmine, with a mean of 17.3 d. Based on the fertility life table, the net reproductive rate (Ro) of D. citri was 2.5 times higher when reared on Valencia than on Hamlin. The other parameters (duration of each generation [T], finite rate of increase [lambda], and innate capacity to increase in number [r(m)]) also demonstrated that Valencia is best suited to this insect. The results obtained for the biological parameters and the fertility life table indicate that Valencia and orange jasmine were the most suitable hosts, whereas Hamlin was least suitable for the development of D. citri. These results provide information for the installation of new citrus groves, especially in the choice of varieties to be planted and the location of different varieties within the groves, with a view toward the management of Huanglongbing or HLB.

  9. Quantification method of N2O emission from full-scale biological nutrient removal wastewater treatment plant by laboratory batch reactor analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Yesul; Kim, Dong-Jin

    2014-08-01

    This study proposes a simplified method for the quantification of N2O emission from a biological nutrient removal wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). The method incorporates a laboratory-scale batch reactor which had almost the same operational (wastewater and sludge flow rates) condition of a unit operation/process of the WWTP. Cumulative N2O emissions from the batch reactor at the corresponding hydraulic retention times of the full-scale units (primary and secondary clarifiers, pre-anoxic, anaerobic, anoxic and aerobic basins) were used for the quantification of N2O emission. The analysis showed that the aerobic basin emitted 95% of the total emission and the emission factor (yield) reached 0.8% based on the influent nitrogen load. The method successfully estimated N2O emission from the WWTP and it has shown advantages in measurement time and cost over the direct field measurement (floating chamber) method. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. ePlantLIBRA: A composition and biological activity database for bioactive compounds in plant food supplements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plumb, J; Lyons, J; Nørby, K; Thomas, M; Nørby, E; Poms, R; Bucchini, L; Restani, P; Kiely, M; Finglas, P

    2016-02-15

    The newly developed ePlantLIBRA database is a comprehensive and searchable database, with up-to-date coherent and validated scientific information on plant food supplement (PFS) bioactive compounds, with putative health benefits as well as adverse effects, and contaminants and residues. It is the only web-based database available compiling peer reviewed publications and case studies on PFS. A user-friendly, efficient and flexible interface has been developed for searching, extracting, and exporting the data, including links to the original references. Data from over 570 publications have been quality evaluated and entered covering 70 PFS or their botanical ingredients.

  11. Understanding the Biological Roles of Pectins in Plants through Physiological and Functional Characterizations of Plant and Fungal Mutants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stranne, Maria

    wall acetylation (Chapter 2), identification of a candidate gene required for acetylation of pectin (Chapter 3), screening of pectin mutants for susceptibility to the nectrotrophic fungal pathogen Botrytis cinerea (Chapter 4), and identification and functional characterization of an arabinan......-degrading enzyme secreted by B. cinerea during infection of plants (Chapter 5). The results described resulted in valuable new knowledge regarding the role of pectin acetylation and arabinosylation in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana documented in three published research papers, one manuscript and one...

  12. Economic value of biological control in integrated pest management of managed plant systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naranjo, Steven E; Ellsworth, Peter C; Frisvold, George B

    2015-01-07

    Biological control is an underlying pillar of integrated pest management, yet little focus has been placed on assigning economic value to this key ecosystem service. Setting biological control on a firm economic foundation would help to broaden its utility and adoption for sustainable crop protection. Here we discuss approaches and methods available for valuation of biological control of arthropod pests by arthropod natural enemies and summarize economic evaluations in classical, augmentative, and conservation biological control. Emphasis is placed on valuation of conservation biological control, which has received little attention. We identify some of the challenges of and opportunities for applying economics to biological control to advance integrated pest management. Interaction among diverse scientists and stakeholders will be required to measure the direct and indirect costs and benefits of biological control that will allow farmers and others to internalize the benefits that incentivize and accelerate adoption for private and public good.

  13. Climate adaptation is not enough: warming does not facilitate success of southern tundra plant populations in the high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjorkman, Anne D; Vellend, Mark; Frei, Esther R; Henry, Gregory H R

    2017-04-01

    Rapidly rising temperatures are expected to cause latitudinal and elevational range shifts as species track their optimal climate north and upward. However, a lack of adaptation to environmental conditions other than climate - for example photoperiod, biotic interactions, or edaphic conditions - might limit the success of immigrants in a new location despite hospitable climatic conditions. Here, we present one of the first direct experimental tests of the hypothesis that warmer temperatures at northern latitudes will confer a fitness advantage to southern immigrants relative to native populations. As rates of warming in the Arctic are more than double the global average, understanding the impacts of warming in Arctic ecosystems is especially urgent. We established experimentally warmed and nonwarmed common garden plots at Alexandra Fiord, Ellesmere Island in the Canadian High Arctic with seeds of two forb species (Oxyria digyna and Papaver radicatum) originating from three to five populations at different latitudes across the Arctic. We found that plants from the local populations generally had higher survival and obtained a greater maximum size than foreign individuals, regardless of warming treatment. Phenological traits varied with latitude of the source population, such that southern populations demonstrated substantially delayed leaf-out and senescence relative to northern populations. Our results suggest that environmental conditions other than temperature may influence the ability of foreign populations and species to establish at more northerly latitudes as the climate warms, potentially leading to lags in northward range shifts for some species.

  14. Patterns of plant functional variation and specialization along secondary succession and topography in a tropical dry forest

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanaphre-Villanueva, Lucía; Dupuy, Juan Manuel; Andrade, José Luis; Reyes-García, Casandra; Jackson, Paula C.; Paz, Horacio

    2017-05-01

    Long-term human disturbance of tropical forests may favor generalist plant species leading to biotic homogenization. We aimed to a) assess if generalist species dominate across different successional ages and topographical positions in a tropical dry forest with a long history of human disturbance, b) to characterize functional traits associated with generalist and specialist species, and c) to assess if a predominance of generalists leads to a homogeneous functional structure across the landscape. We used a multinomial model of relative abundances to classify 118 woody species according to their successional/topographic habitat. Three species were classified as secondary-forest specialists, five as mature-forest specialists, 35 as generalists, and 75 as too rare to classify. According to topography, six species were hill specialists, eight flat-site specialists, 35 generalists, and 70 too rare. Generalists dominated across the landscape. Analysis of 14 functional traits from 65 dominant species indicated that generalists varied from acquisitive strategies of light and water early in succession to conservative strategies in older forests and on hills. Long-term human disturbance may have favored generalist species, but this did not result in functional homogenization. Further analyses considering other functional traits, and temporal and fine-scale microenvironmental variation are needed to better understand community assembly.

  15. ePlant and the 3D Data Display Initiative: Integrative Systems Biology on the World Wide Web

    OpenAIRE

    Geoffrey Fucile; David Di Biase; Hardeep Nahal; Garon La; Shokoufeh Khodabandeh; Yani Chen; Kante Easley; Dinesh Christendat; Lawrence Kelley; Provart, Nicholas J.

    2011-01-01

    Visualization tools for biological data are often limited in their ability to interactively integrate data at multiple scales. These computational tools are also typically limited by two-dimensional displays and programmatic implementations that require separate configurations for each of the user's computing devices and recompilation for functional expansion. Towards overcoming these limitations we have developed "ePlant" (http://bar.utoronto.ca/eplant) - a suite of open-source world wide we...

  16. National Biological Monitoring Inventory. [Data base for information on biological monitoring of power plant impacts on environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burgess, R. L.

    1979-01-01

    The National Biological Monitoring Inventory, initiated in 1975, currently consists of four computerized data bases and voluminous manual files. MAIN BIOMON contains detailed information on 1,021 projects, while MINI BIOMON provides skeletal data for over 3,000 projects in the 50 states, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, plus a few in Canada and Mexico. BIBLIO BIOMON and DIRECTORY BIOMON complete the computerized data bases. The structure of the system provides for on-line search capabilities to generate details of agency sponsorship, indications of funding levels, taxonomic and geographic coverage, length of program life, managerial focus or emphasis, and condition of the data. Examples of each of these are discussed and illustrated, and potential use of the Inventory in a variety of situations is emphasized.

  17. Germination, survival and growth of three vascular plants on biological soil crusts from a Mexican tropical desert.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godínez-Alvarez, H; Morín, C; Rivera-Aguilar, V

    2012-01-01

    Information about the effects of biological soil crusts (BSC) on germination, seedling survival and growth of vascular plants is controversial because they can have positive, neutral or negative effects. This controversy may be because most studies conducted until now have just analysed one or two recruitment stages independently. To understand the BSC effects on vascular plants, it is necessary to consider each stage of the recruitment process and synthesise all this information. The goal of this study was twofold. First, we analyse germination, seedling survival and growth of three vascular plants (Agave marmorata, Prosopis laevigata and Neobuxbaumia tetetzo) on BSC (cyanobacteria and mixed crust) from a tropical desert region of south-central México. Second, we synthesise the information to determine the total effect of BSC on plant species performance. We conducted experiments under controlled conditions to evaluate the proportion of germinated seeds, proportion of surviving seedlings and seedling dry weight in BSC and bare soil. Results showed that BSC have different effects on germination, seedling survival and growth of plant species. Plant species performance was qualitatively higher on BSC than bare soil. The highest performance of A. marmorata and P. laevigata was observed on cyanobacteria and mixed crusts, respectively. The highest performance of N. tetetzo was on both crust types.

  18. Changes in operational procedures to improve spaceflight experiments in plant biology in the European Modular Cultivation System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiss, John Z.; Aanes, Gjert; Schiefloe, Mona; Coelho, Liz H. F.; Millar, Katherine D. L.; Edelmann, Richard E.

    2014-03-01

    The microgravity environment aboard orbiting spacecraft has provided a unique laboratory to explore topics in basic plant biology as well as applied research on the use of plants in bioregenerative life support systems. Our group has utilized the European Modular Cultivation System (EMCS) aboard the International Space Station (ISS) to study plant growth, development, tropisms, and gene expression in a series of spaceflight experiments. The most current project performed on the ISS was termed Seedling Growth-1 (SG-1) which builds on the previous TROPI (for tropisms) experiments performed in 2006 and 2010. Major technical and operational changes in SG-1 (launched in March 2013) compared to the TROPI experiments include: (1) improvements in lighting conditions within the EMCS to optimize the environment for phototropism studies, (2) the use of infrared illumination to provide high-quality images of the seedlings, (3) modifications in procedures used in flight to improve the focus and overall quality of the images, and (4) changes in the atmospheric conditions in the EMCS incubator. In SG-1, a novel red-light-based phototropism in roots and hypocotyls of seedlings that was noted in TROPI was confirmed and now can be more precisely characterized based on the improvements in procedures. The lessons learned from sequential experiments in the TROPI hardware provide insights to other researchers developing space experiments in plant biology.

  19. Biological control of broad-leaved dock infestation in wheat using plant antagonistic bacteria under field conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbas, Tasawar; Zahir, Zahir Ahmad; Naveed, Muhammad; Aslam, Zubair

    2017-06-01

    Conventional weed management systems have produced many harmful effects on weed ecology, human health and environment. Biological control of invasive weeds may be helpful to minimize these harmful effects and economic losses incurred to crops by weeds. In our earlier studies, plant antagonistic bacteria were obtained after screening a large number of rhizobacteria for production of phytotoxic substances and effects on wheat and its associated weeds under laboratory conditions. In this study, five efficient strains inhibitory to broad-leaved dock and non-inhibitory to wheat were selected and applied to broad-leaved dock co-seeded with wheat both in pot trial and chronically infested field trial. Effects of plant antagonistic bacteria on the weed and infested wheat were studied at tillering, booting and harvesting stage of wheat. The applied strains significantly inhibited the germination and growth of the weed to variable extent. Similarly, variable recovery in losses of grain and straw yield of infested wheat from 11.6 to 68 and 13 to 72.6% was obtained in pot trial while from 17.3 to 62.9 and 22.4 to 71.3% was obtained in field trial, respectively. Effects of plant antagonistic bacteria were also evident from the improvement in physiology and nutrient contents of infested wheat. This study suggests the use of these plant antagonistic bacteria to biologically control infestation of broad-leaved dock in wheat under field conditions.

  20. Successful application of entomopathogenic nematodes for the biological control of western corn rootworm larvae in Europe – a mini review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toepfer, Stefan

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available 10 years of joint efforts in research and development have led to a nematode-based biological control solution for one of the most destructive maize pests, the western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera LeConte (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae. Commercially mass-produced Heterorhabditis species of beneficial entomopathogenic nematodes are ready to use. They can be applied into the soil during sowing of maize for controlling the subsequently hatching larvae of D. virgifera virgifera thus preventing root feeding and damage to maize. Policy bodies, decision makers and farmers are advised to consider biological control as one of the alternatives to synthetic pesticides in maize production, and according to the EC Directive on the sustainable use of pesticides and implementation of integrated pest management.

  1. Reproductive biology of the biofuel plant Jatropha curcas in its center of origin

    OpenAIRE

    2016-01-01

    In this work, we studied the main characteristics of flowering, reproductive system and diversity of pollinators for the biofuel plant Jatropha curcas (L.) in a site of tropical southeastern Mexico, within its center of origin. The plants were monoecious with inflorescences of unisexual flowers. The male flowers produced from 3062–5016 pollen grains (266–647 per anther). The plants produced fruits with both geitonogamy and xenogamy, although insect pollination significantly increased the numb...

  2. The Microphenotron: a robotic miniaturized plant phenotyping platform with diverse applications in chemical biology

    KAUST Repository

    Burrell, Thomas

    2017-03-01

    Background Chemical genetics provides a powerful alternative to conventional genetics for understanding gene function. However, its application to plants has been limited by the lack of a technology that allows detailed phenotyping of whole-seedling development in the context of a high-throughput chemical screen. We have therefore sought to develop an automated micro-phenotyping platform that would allow both root and shoot development to be monitored under conditions where the phenotypic effects of large numbers of small molecules can be assessed. Results The ‘Microphenotron’ platform uses 96-well microtitre plates to deliver chemical treatments to seedlings of Arabidopsis thaliana L. and is based around four components: (a) the ‘Phytostrip’, a novel seedling growth device that enables chemical treatments to be combined with the automated capture of images of developing roots and shoots; (b) an illuminated robotic platform that uses a commercially available robotic manipulator to capture images of developing shoots and roots; (c) software to control the sequence of robotic movements and integrate these with the image capture process; (d) purpose-made image analysis software for automated extraction of quantitative phenotypic data. Imaging of each plate (representing 80 separate assays) takes 4 min and can easily be performed daily for time-course studies. As currently configured, the Microphenotron has a capacity of 54 microtitre plates in a growth room footprint of 2.1 m2, giving a potential throughput of up to 4320 chemical treatments in a typical 10 days experiment. The Microphenotron has been validated by using it to screen a collection of 800 natural compounds for qualitative effects on root development and to perform a quantitative analysis of the effects of a range of concentrations of nitrate and ammonium on seedling development. Conclusions The Microphenotron is an automated screening platform that for the first time is able to combine large

  3. The Microphenotron: a robotic miniaturized plant phenotyping platform with diverse applications in chemical biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burrell, Thomas; Fozard, Susan; Holroyd, Geoff H; French, Andrew P; Pound, Michael P; Bigley, Christopher J; James Taylor, C; Forde, Brian G

    2017-01-01

    Chemical genetics provides a powerful alternative to conventional genetics for understanding gene function. However, its application to plants has been limited by the lack of a technology that allows detailed phenotyping of whole-seedling development in the context of a high-throughput chemical screen. We have therefore sought to develop an automated micro-phenotyping platform that would allow both root and shoot development to be monitored under conditions where the phenotypic effects of large numbers of small molecules can be assessed. The 'Microphenotron' platform uses 96-well microtitre plates to deliver chemical treatments to seedlings of Arabidopsis thaliana L. and is based around four components: (a) the 'Phytostrip', a novel seedling growth device that enables chemical treatments to be combined with the automated capture of images of developing roots and shoots; (b) an illuminated robotic platform that uses a commercially available robotic manipulator to capture images of developing shoots and roots; (c) software to control the sequence of robotic movements and integrate these with the image capture process; (d) purpose-made image analysis software for automated extraction of quantitative phenotypic data. Imaging of each plate (representing 80 separate assays) takes 4 min and can easily be performed daily for time-course studies. As currently configured, the Microphenotron has a capacity of 54 microtitre plates in a growth room footprint of 2.1 m(2), giving a potential throughput of up to 4320 chemical treatments in a typical 10 days experiment. The Microphenotron has been validated by using it to screen a collection of 800 natural compounds for qualitative effects on root development and to perform a quantitative analysis of the effects of a range of concentrations of nitrate and ammonium on seedling development. The Microphenotron is an automated screening platform that for the first time is able to combine large numbers of individual chemical

  4. EPlantLIBRA: A composition and biological activity database for bioactive compounds in plant food supplements

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Plumb, J.; Lyons, J.; Nørby, Karin Kristiane

    2015-01-01

    The newly developed ePlantLIBRA database is a comprehensive and searchable database, with up-to-date coherent and validated scientific information on plant food supplement (PFS) bioactive compounds, with putative health benefits as well as adverse effects, and contaminants and residues. It is the......The newly developed ePlantLIBRA database is a comprehensive and searchable database, with up-to-date coherent and validated scientific information on plant food supplement (PFS) bioactive compounds, with putative health benefits as well as adverse effects, and contaminants and residues...

  5. The gravitational plant physiology facility-Description of equipment developed for biological research in spacelab

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heathcote, D. G.; Chapman, D. K.; Brown, A. H.; Lewis, R. F.

    1994-01-01

    In January 1992, the NASA Suttle mission STS 42 carried a facility designed to perform experiments on plant gravi- and photo-tropic responses. This equipment, the Gravitational Plant Physiology Facility (GPPF) was made up of a number of interconnected units mounted within a Spacelab double rack. The details of these units and the plant growth containers designed for use in GPPF are described. The equipment functioned well during the mission and returned a substantial body of time-lapse video data on plant responses to tropistic stimuli under conditions of orbital microgravity. GPPF is maintained by NASA Ames Research Center, and is flight qualifiable for future spacelab missions.

  6. Soil and plant factors driving the community of soil-borne microorganisms across chronosequences of secondary succession of chalk grasslands with a neutral pH.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuramae, Eiko; Gamper, Hannes; van Veen, Johannes; Kowalchuk, George

    2011-08-01

    Although soil pH has been shown to be an important factor driving microbial communities, relatively little is known about the other potentially important factors that shape soil-borne microbial community structure. This study examined plant and microbial communities across a series of neutral pH fields (pH=7.0-7.5) representing a chronosequence of secondary succession after former arable fields were taken out of production. These fields ranged from 17 to >66 years since the time of abandonment, and an adjacent arable field was included as a reference. Hierarchical clustering analysis, nonmetric multidimensional scaling and analysis of similarity of 52 different plant species showed that the plant community composition was significantly different in the different chronosequences, and that plant species richness and diversity increased with time since abandonment. The microbial community structure, as analyzed by phylogenetic microarrays (PhyloChips), was significantly different in arable field and the early succession stage, but no distinct microbial communities were observed for the intermediate and the late succession stages. The most determinant factors in shaping the soil-borne microbial communities were phosphorous and NH(4)(+). Plant community composition and diversity did not have a significant effect on the belowground microbial community structure or diversity. © 2011 Federation of European Microbiological Societies. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Biochemical Status of Stock Plants and Their Annual Sprouts as a Crucial Key for Successful Adventitious Root Formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregor OSTERC

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Leafy cuttings of Prunus subhirtella Miq. ‘Autumnalis’ were harvested from mature, semi-mature and juvenile stock plants at four dates during the vegetative period 2011 (on 16th of May, on 30th of May, on 20th of June and on 11th of July and their auxin levels (IAA, IAA-Asp and sugar content (glucose, sucrose, sorbitol were quantified. The IAA and IAA-Asp contents in cutting bases increased over the vegetative period, whereby aspartate values were higher than IAA values. The IAA-Asp values ranged from 6.3 µg g-1 to 22.7 µg g-1 FW and reached two great peaks on 30th of May and on 11th of July. The IAA values ranged from 0.29 µg g-1 to 4.51 µg g-1 FW, reaching a small fall on 20th of June. Significantly higher levels of IAA and IAA-Asp were measured at the base of mature cuttings compared to cuttings of semi-mature and juvenile origin, when the cuttings were harvested on 30th of May and on 11th of July. On the other hand, mature leafy cuttings accumulated significantly less fructose and glucose in their root emergence zone (16.3 g kg-1 DW, 45.2 g kg-1 DW compared to semi-mature cuttings (26.4 g kg-1 DW, 62.5 g kg-1 DW and juvenile cuttings (27.3 g kg-1 DW, 73.9 g kg-1 DW. All measured rooting parameters (rooting success, number of main roots and root length were significantly improved when cuttings of a more juvenile origin (semi-mature and juvenile were used.

  8. Survey results of corroding problems at biological treatment plants, Stage II Protection of concrete - State of the Art

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Edwards, Ylva (CBI, Boraas (Sweden)); Henriksson, Gunilla (SP, Boraas (Sweden))

    2011-07-01

    A pilot study on the degradation and corrosion of concrete in biological treatment plants was conducted in 2009/2010 in a Waste Refinery Project WR-27 'Survey results of corroding problems at biological treatment plants'. The results showed that the concrete does not have sufficient resistance in the current aggressive plant environment. Furthermore, it is stated that some form of surface protection system is needed to ensure the good performance of concrete constructions, and that the system must withstand the aggressive environment and the traffic that occurs on site. Consequently, a new study was proposed in order to develop specifications for surface protection of concrete in aggressive food waste environments. Results from that study are presented in this report. The report includes various types of waterproofing/protection coating for concrete in biological treatment plants. A number of proposals from the industry are presented in the light of results from project WR-27, i.e., the materials must, among other things, withstand the aggressive leachate from waste food at temperatures up to 70 deg C, and some degree of wear. Some systems are compared in terms of technical material properties as reported by the manufacturer. It turns out that different testing methods were used, and the test results are thus generally not directly comparable. A proposal for a test program has been developed, focusing on chemical resistance and wear resistance. A test solution corresponding to leachate is specified. Laboratory tests for verification of the proposed methodology and future requirements are proposed, as well as test sites and follow-up in the field

  9. Stable heterologous expression of biologically active terpenoids in green plant cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Binti Khairul Ikram, Nur Kusaira; Zhan, Xin; Pan, Xiwu

    2015-01-01

    for industrial production for many of these compounds. However, because these chemicals are often found in low abundance in the native plant, or are produced in plants which are difficult to cultivate, there is great interest in engineering increased production or expression of the biosynthetic pathways...

  10. Biological screening of some Turkish medicinal plant extracts for antimicrobial and toxicity activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turker, A U; Usta, C

    2008-01-20

    Screening of antibacterial activity and toxicity of 22 aqueous plant extracts from 17 Turkish plants was conducted. Antibacterial activity was performed with six bacteria including Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Streptococcus pyogenes, Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis. Extracts of Tussilago farfara leaves, Helichyrsum plicatum flowers, Solanum dulcamara aerial parts and Urtica dioica leaves gave the best inhibitory activity against S. pyogenes, S. aureus and S. epidermidis. Of the 22 plant extracts, 20 extracts displayed toxicity (LC50 was radish seed bioassay, two different determinations (root length and seed germination) were performed with a comparison between two concentrations (50,000 mg L(-1) and 10,000 mg L(-1)). At low concentration (10,000 mg L(-1)), S. dulcamara aerial parts and Primula vulgaris leaf extracts were observed to inhibit the root length more than the other plant extracts. Also, the most inhibitive plant extract for seed germination was obtained with S. dulcamara aerial parts.

  11. Reclamation after oil and gas development does not speed up succession or plant community recovery in big sagebrush ecosystems in Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rottler, Caitlin M.; Burke, Ingrid C.; Palmquist, Kyle A.; Bradford, John B.; Lauenroth, William K.

    2017-01-01

    Article for intended outlet: Restoration Ecology. Abstract: Reclamation is an application of treatment(s) following a disturbance to promote succession and accelerate the return of target conditions. Previous studies have framed reclamation in the context of succession by studying its effectiveness in re-establishing late-successional plant communities. Re-establishment of these plant communities is especially important and potentially challenging in regions such as drylands and shrub steppe ecosystems where succession proceeds slowly. Dryland shrub steppe ecosystems are frequently associated with areas rich in fossil-fuel energy sources, and as such the need for effective reclamation after disturbance from fossil-fuel-related energy development is great. Past research in this field has focused primarily on coal mines; few researchers have studied reclamation after oil and gas development. To address this research gap and to better understand the effect of reclamation on rates of succession in dryland shrub steppe ecosystems, we sampled oil and gas wellpads and adjacent undisturbed big sagebrush plant communities in Wyoming, USA and quantified the extent of recovery for major functional groups on reclaimed and unreclaimed (recovered via natural succession) wellpads relative to the undisturbed plant community. Reclamation increased the rate of recovery for all forb and grass species as a group and for perennial grasses, but did not affect other functional groups. Rather, analyses comparing recovery to environmental variables and time since wellpad abandonment showed that recovery of other groups were affected primarily by soil texture and time since wellpad abandonment. This is consistent with studies in other ecosystems where reclamation has been implemented, suggesting that reclamation may not help re-establish late-successional plant communities more quickly than they would re-establish naturally.

  12. TRICHODERMA VIRIDE PERS. – EXPERIMENTAL MODEL FOR BIOLOGICAL AND BIOTECHNOLOGICAL INVESTIGATIONS OF MYCROMYCETA WITH IMPORTANCE IN OBTAINING PLANT PROTECTION BIOPRODUCTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    SESAN TATIANA EUGENIA

    2010-12-01

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