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Crop Production

J M M Adams, A L Winters, E M Hodgson, J A Gallagher
Background: Energy crops including Miscanthus provide a storable, portable energy source which can be used to complement a wide range of products and energy generation systems. Miscanthus is predominantly used in Europe as a combustion material for electricity generation but also has the potential for biochemical conversion due to its high yield and low-nutrient requirements. The ratio of holocellulose (hemicellulose and cellulose combined) to acid detergent lignin (H:L) within the senesced material has previously been shown to indicate the relative suitability of Miscanthus accessions for thermochemical conversion...
2018: Biotechnology for Biofuels
Xingang Zhou, Fengzhi Wu
Soil microorganisms are key drivers of plant productivity in terrestrial ecosystems, yet controls on their diversities and abundances are not fully elucidated. Phenolic acids, released through plant root exudation and residues decomposition, are usually referred as autotoxins of several crops, including cucumber. In this study, effects of vanillic acid (VA) on cucumber rhizosphere microbial communities were investigated by treating cucumber seedlings with VA every two days for five times. Amplicon sequencing, PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and quantitative PCR were used to analyzed the 16S rRNA genes of total bacterial, Pseudomonas and Bacillus spp...
March 21, 2018: Scientific Reports
Megan Huang, Christopher Sudfeld, Abbas Ismail, Said Vuai, Julius Ntwenya, Mary Mwanyika-Sando, Wafaie Fawzi
OBJECTIVE: To identify predictors of maternal dietary diversity in rural Dodoma, Tanzania and assess its association with child growth outcomes. METHODS: A cross-sectional survey of 361 mothers with children under 24 months of age was conducted in 5 villages in rural Dodoma, Tanzania. Maternal diets were assessed using food frequency questionnaires, and dietary diversity was categorized using Minimum Dietary Diversity for Women (MDD-W) guidelines. Child anthropometric measures were taken to calculate height-for-age z-score (HAZ), weight-for-height z-score (WHZ), and weight-for-age z-score (WAZ)...
January 1, 2018: Food and Nutrition Bulletin
Nanthana Chaiwong, Chanakan Prom-U-Thai, Nadia Bouain, Benoit Lacombe, Hatem Rouached
Mineral nutrient homeostasis is essential for plant growth and development. Recent research has demonstrated that the occurrence of interactions among the mechanisms regulating the homeostasis of different nutrients in plants is a general rule rather than an exception. Therefore, it is important to understand how plants regulate the homeostasis of these elements and how multiple mineral nutrient signals are wired to influence plant growth. Silicon (Si) is not directly involved in plant metabolism but it is an essential element for a high and sustainable production of crops, especially rice, because of its high content in the total shoot dry weight...
March 18, 2018: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
A J Christensen, Venkatraman Srinivasan, John C Hart, Amy Marshall-Colon
Sustainable crop production is a contributing factor to current and future food security. Innovative technologies are needed to design strategies that will achieve higher crop yields on less land and with fewer resources. Computational modeling coupled with advanced scientific visualization enables researchers to explore and interact with complex agriculture, nutrition, and climate data to predict how crops will respond to untested environments. These virtual observations and predictions can direct the development of crop ideotypes designed to meet future yield and nutritional demands...
March 17, 2018: Nutrition Reviews
Ulrike Bechtold, John N Ferguson, Philip M Mullineaux
The emergence of Arabidopsis as a model species and the availability of genetic and genomic resources have resulted in the identification and detailed characterisation of abiotic stress signalling pathways. However, this has led only to limited success in engineering abiotic stress tolerance in crops. This is because there needs to be a deeper understanding in how to combine resistances to a range of stresses with growth and productivity. The natural variation and genomic resources of Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) is a great asset to understand the mechanisms of multiple stress tolerances...
March 17, 2018: Journal of Experimental Botany
Panteleimon D Mavroudis, Helen E Hermes, Donato Teutonico, Thomas G Preuss, Sebastian Schneckener
The environmental fates of pharmaceuticals and the effects of crop protection products on non-target species are subjects that are undergoing intense review. Since measuring the concentrations and effects of xenobiotics on all affected species under all conceivable scenarios is not feasible, standard laboratory animals such as rabbits are tested, and the observed adverse effects are translated to focal species for environmental risk assessments. In that respect, mathematical modelling is becoming increasingly important for evaluating the consequences of pesticides in untested scenarios...
2018: PloS One
Aurélie Bechoff, Keith Ian Tomlins, Ugo Chijioke, Paul Ilona, Andrew Westby, Erick Boy
Gari, a fermented and dried semolina made from cassava, is one of the most common foods in West Africa. Recently introduced biofortified yellow cassava containing provitamin A carotenoids could help tackle vitamin A deficiency prevalent in those areas. However there are concerns because of the low retention of carotenoids during gari processing compared to other processes (e.g. boiling). The aim of the study was to assess the levels of true retention in trans-β-carotene during gari processing and investigate the causes of low retention...
2018: PloS One
Vallence Nsabiyera, Harbans S Bariana, Naeela Qureshi, Debbie Wong, Matthew J Hayden, Urmil K Bansal
A new adult plant stripe rust resistance gene, Yr80, was identified in a common wheat landrace Aus27284. Linked markers were developed and validated for their utility in marker-assisted selection. Stripe rust, caused by Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst), is among the most important constraints to global wheat production. The identification and characterisation of new sources of host plant resistance enrich the gene pool and underpin deployment of resistance gene pyramids in new cultivars. Aus27284 exhibited resistance at the adult plant stage against predominant Pst pathotypes and was crossed with a susceptible genotype Avocet S...
March 20, 2018: TAG. Theoretical and Applied Genetics. Theoretische und Angewandte Genetik
Pratishtha Gupta, Rupa Rani, Avantika Chandra, Vipin Kumar
Contamination of agricultural soil with heavy metals has become a serious concern worldwide. In the present study, Cr6+ resistant plant growth promoting Pseudomonas sp. (strain CPSB21) was isolated from the tannery effluent contaminated agricultural soils and evaluated for the plant growth promoting activities, oxidative stress tolerance, and Cr6+ bioremediation. Assessment of different plant growth promotion traits, such as phosphate solubilization, indole-3-acetic acid production, siderophores, ammonia and hydrogen cyanide production, revealed that the strain CPSB21 served as an efficient plant growth promoter under laboratory conditions...
March 20, 2018: Scientific Reports
Gary D Crouse, David A Demeter, Geno Samaritoni, Casandra L McLeod, Thomas C Sparks
New insect pest control agents are needed to meet the demands to feed an expanding global population, to address the desire for more environmentally-friendly insecticide tools, and to fill the loss of control options in some crop-pest complexes due to development of insecticide resistance. The spinosyns are a highly effective class of naturally occurring, fermentation derived insecticides, possessing a very favorable environmental profile. Chemically, the spinosyns are composed of a large complex macrolide tetracycle coupled to two sugars...
March 20, 2018: Scientific Reports
Charles M Denby, Rachel A Li, Van T Vu, Zak Costello, Weiyin Lin, Leanne Jade G Chan, Joseph Williams, Bryan Donaldson, Charles W Bamforth, Christopher J Petzold, Henrik V Scheller, Hector Garcia Martin, Jay D Keasling
Flowers of the hop plant provide both bitterness and "hoppy" flavor to beer. Hops are, however, both a water and energy intensive crop and vary considerably in essential oil content, making it challenging to achieve a consistent hoppy taste in beer. Here, we report that brewer's yeast can be engineered to biosynthesize aromatic monoterpene molecules that impart hoppy flavor to beer by incorporating recombinant DNA derived from yeast, mint, and basil. Whereas metabolic engineering of biosynthetic pathways is commonly enlisted to maximize product titers, tuning expression of pathway enzymes to affect target production levels of multiple commercially important metabolites without major collateral metabolic changes represents a unique challenge...
March 20, 2018: Nature Communications
Mark A Adams, Nina Buchmann, Janet Sprent, Thomas N Buckley, Tarryn L Turnbull
Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) by crop legumes reduces demand for industrial nitrogen fixation (INF). Nonetheless, rates of BNF in agriculture remain low, with strong negative feedback to BNF from reactive soil nitrogen (N) and drought. We show that breeding for yield has resulted in strong relationships between photosynthesis and leaf N in non-leguminous crops, whereas grain legumes show strong relations between leaf N and water use efficiency (WUE). We contrast these understandings with other studies that draw attention to the water costs of grain legume crops, and their potential for polluting the biosphere with N...
March 17, 2018: Trends in Plant Science
Alfonso Méndez-Bravo, Elvis Marian Cortazar-Murillo, Edgar Guevara-Avendaño, Oscar Ceballos-Luna, Benjamín Rodríguez-Haas, Ana L Kiel-Martínez, Orlando Hernández-Cristóbal, José A Guerrero-Analco, Frédérique Reverchon
Rhizobacteria associated with crops constitute an important source of potentially beneficial microorganisms with plant growth promoting activity or antagonistic effects against phytopathogens. In this study, we evaluated the plant growth promoting activity of 11 bacterial isolates that were obtained from the rhizosphere of healthy avocado trees and from that of avocado trees having survived root rot infestations. Seven bacterial isolates, belonging to the genera Bacillus, Pseudomonas and Arthrobacter, promoted in vitro growth of Arabidopsis thaliana...
2018: PloS One
Zewdu Hora, Solomon Zewdu Altaye, Abebe Jenberie Wubie, Jianke Li
The honeybee is one of the most valuable insect pollinators, which plays a key role in pollinating wild vegetation and agricultural crops, with significant contribution to world food production. Although honeybees have long been studied as model for social evolution, the molecular level of honeybee biology remained poorly understood until the year 2006. With the available honeybee genome sequence, technological advancements in protein separation, mass spectrometry, and bioinformatics, wide ranges of honeybee biology such as developmental biology, physiology, behavior, neurobiology, and immunology are explored to a new depth at molecular and biochemical levels...
March 20, 2018: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
C Kaewpila, K Sommart, M Mitsumori
The mitigation of enteric methane emission in beef cattle production is important for reducing feed energy loss and increasing environmental sustainability. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of different oilseeds included in fermented total mixed rations (whole soyabean seed (SBS, control), whole kapok seed (KPS) and cracked oil palm fruit (OPF)) on feed intake, digestibility, rumen microbial populations, energy partition and methane emissions in different cattle genotypes (Charolais crossbred v...
March 20, 2018: Animal: An International Journal of Animal Bioscience
Debasish Deb, Ankita Shrestha, Indu B Maiti, Nrisingha Dey
Development of disease-resistant plant varieties achieved by engineering anti-microbial transgenes under the control of strong promoters can suffice the inhibition of pathogen growth and simultaneously ensure enhanced crop production. For evaluating the prospect of such strong promoters, we comprehensively characterized the full-length transcript promoter of Cassava Vein Mosaic Virus (CsVMV; -565 to +166) and identified CsVMV8 (-215 to +166) as the highest expressing fragment in both transient and transgenic assays...
2018: Frontiers in Plant Science
Mayank Kaashyap, Rebecca Ford, Himabindu Kudapa, Mukesh Jain, Dave Edwards, Rajeev Varshney, Nitin Mantri
Salinity is a major constraint for intrinsically salt sensitive grain legume chickpea. Chickpea exhibits large genetic variation amongst cultivars, which show better yields in saline conditions but still need to be improved further for sustainable crop production. Based on previous multi-location physiological screening, JG 11 (salt tolerant) and ICCV 2 (salt sensitive) were subjected to salt stress to evaluate their physiological and transcriptional responses. A total of ~480 million RNA-Seq reads were sequenced from root tissues which resulted in identification of 3,053 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in response to salt stress...
March 19, 2018: Scientific Reports
Amjad M Husaini, Kyoko Morimoto, Balakumaran Chandrasekar, Steven Kelly, Farnusch Kaschani, Daniel Palmero, Jianbing Jiang, Markus Kaiser, Oussama Ahrazem, Hermen S Overkleeft, Renier A L van der Hoorn
With nearly 140 α-glycosidases in 14 different families, plants are well equipped with enzymes that can break the α-glucosidic bonds in a large diversity of molecules. Here, we introduce activity-based protein profiling (ABPP) of α-glycosidases in plants using α-configured cyclophellitol aziridine probes carrying various fluorophores or biotin. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), these probes label members of the GH31 family of Glycosyl Hydrolases, including ER-resident α-glucosidase-II RSW3/PSL5 (Radial Swelling-3/Priority for Sweet Life-5) and Golgi-resident α-mannosidase-II HGL1, both of which trim N-glycans on glycoproteins...
March 19, 2018: Plant Physiology
Carlos Daniel Crocco, Gabriel Gomez-Ocampo, Anita Mantese, Edmundo L Ploschuk, Javier Francisco Botto
B-box (BBX) proteins are zinc-finger transcription factors containing one or two B-box motifs. BBX proteins act as key factors in the networks regulating growth and development. The relevance of BBX21 to light and abscisic acid signaling in seedling development is well stablished, however its importance in adult plant development and agronomic species is poorly understood. Therefore, we studied the effect of heterologous expression of Arabidopsis thaliana BBX21 in potato (Solanum tuberosum) var. Spunta. Three independent AtBBX21-expressing lines and the wild-type control were cultivated under sunlight and at controlled temperatures in a greenhouse...
March 19, 2018: Plant Physiology
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