Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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3D printing of foods with added functionality – Examples of cheese-like products and probiotic cookies
Zhang, Lu - \ 2018
Extrusion-based 3D printing offers more flexibility in achieving food structures with controlled composition, geometric complexity and added functionality compared to conventional manufacturing methods. Research in our laboratory of Food Process Engineering aims at generation of knowledge required to stimulate the development of this technology and explores 3D-food printed concepts with added functionality.
In a first project we investigated 3D printing of sodium caseinate dispersions, exhibiting reversible gelation behaviour 1. These formulations can be considered as a model system for cheese products. Gelation and dispensing behaviour of sodium caseinate formulations were investigated by rheological analysis. Subsequently, 3D printing of sodium caseinate dispersions was evaluated by printing products with multiple layers at varying protein concentrations. An enzymatic cross-linking procedure was established to enable printing of caseinate dispersions at lower protein content.
In a second project we investigated printing of cookies with probiotic bacteria and assessed their survival during baking as influenced by the geometric design of the structure and the baking conditions. Firstly, a cookie dough formulation was developed to allow printing of more detailed cookie designs. Secondly, designs were printed to make highly-porous and filled baked food structures. Results showed that survival of probiotics in a ‘honeycomb’ structure was 1-log higher than that in a ‘concentric’ structure, when a similar degree of starch gelatinization was reached. This result is consistent with our hypothesis that bacteria survive better in a structure with higher surface/volume ratio, because the time needed for the baking of such a porous structure can be shortened.
Other research on 3D food printing that will be briefly discussed is development of printed fruit juice products by addition of polysaccharides and development of printed pea cookies from dry-enriched pea ingredients.
3D printing of food structures containing probiotics
Zhang, Lu - \ 2018
3D printing of food structures containing Lactobacillus plantarum WCFS1
Zhang, Lu - \ 2018
Genetic analysis of Chinese cabbage reveals correlation between rosette leaf and leafy head variation
Sun, Xiao Xue ; Luo, Shuangxia ; Luo, Lei ; Wang, Xing ; Chen, Xueping ; Lu, Yin ; Shen, Shuxing ; Zhao, Jianjun ; Bonnema, Guusje - \ 2018
Frontiers in Plant Science 9 (2018). - ISSN 1664-462X
Chinese cabbage - Co-location of QTLs - Correlation - Heading degree - Leafy head - Rosette leaf

To understand the genetic regulation of the domestication trait leafy-head formation of Chinese cabbages, we exploit the diversity within Brassica rapa. To improve our understanding of the relationship between variation in rosette-leaves and leafy heads, we phenotyped a diversity set of 152 Chinese cabbages. This showed correlation between rosette-leaf traits and both head traits and heading capacity. Interestingly, the leaf number of the mature head is not correlated to heading degree nor head shape. We then chose a non-heading pak choi genotype to cross to a Chinese cabbage to generate populations segregating for the leafy head traits. Both a large F2 (485 plants) and a smaller Doubled Haploid (88 lines) mapping population were generated. A high density DH-88 genetic map using the Brassica SNP array and an F2 map with a subset of these SNPs and InDel markers was used for quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis. Thirty-one quantitative trait loci (QTLs) were identified for phenotypes of rosette-leaves in time and both heading degree and several heading traits. On chromosome A06 in both DH-88 and F2-485 QTLs for rosette leaf length and petiole length at different developmental days and an F2 QTL for head height co-located. Variation in head height, width and weight all correlate with variation in heading degree with co-locating QTLs, respectively, on chromosome A03, A05, and A08 in F2-485. The correlation between rosette-leaf and heading traits provides not only insight in the leaf requirements to form a head, but also can be used for selection by Chinese cabbage breeders.

Kinetic study of the thermal inactivation of Lactobacillus plantarum during bread baking
Zhang, Lu ; Schutyser, Maarten A.I. ; Boom, Remko M. ; Chen, Xiao Dong - \ 2018
Drying Technology (2018). - ISSN 0737-3937 - 14 p.
bread baking - functional ingredient - inactivation kinetic - Lactobacillus plantarum - Predictive microbiology

Live probiotics can be supplemented to bread as functional ingredients. The viability of probiotics in bread needs to be sufficient to exert a beneficial effect on human health. To maximize the viability, a kinetic study on the inactivation of probiotics during baking was carried out. The thermal inactivation of Lactobacillus plantarum P8 during bread baking was evaluated with rate-dependent kinetic models. The influences of temperature, moisture content, drying rate, and temperature variation rate on the inactivation kinetics were studied explicitly. A kinetic model (Formula presented.), which included temperature (T), moisture content (X), and temperature variation rate (dT/dt) as variables, was found to best describe the concave and sigmoidal survival curves of probiotics in bread crust and in crumb during baking, respectively. The drying rate (dX/dt) was of little influence on the kinetics. The application of the proposed model is limited to baking processes, but could be used to maximize the survival of probiotics in bread products.

Bioactive ingredients during mini-bread baking
Zhang, Lu - \ 2018
University. Promotor(en): Remko Boom, co-promotor(en): Maarten Schutyser. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463433099 - 182
Effect of fermentation on content, molecule weight distribution and viscosity of β-glucans in oat sourdough
Lu, Jun ; Shan, Lingke ; Xie, Yiting ; Min, Fangfang ; Gao, Jinyan ; Guo, Laichun ; Ren, Changzhong ; Yuan, Juanli ; Gilissen, Luud ; Chen, Hongbing - \ 2018
International Journal of Food Science and Technology (2018). - ISSN 0950-5423
Fermentation - Lactobacillus plantarum - Oat β-glucan - Sourdough - Viscosity

This study investigated the effect of fermentation on the physicochemical properties of β-glucans in oat sourdough. Sourdoughs were produced from oat using homo-fermentative lactic acid bacteria, Lactobacillus plantarum 22134. The contents of total β-glucan and soluble β-glucan, the molecular weight (MW) of β-glucan and the viscosity of the extracted β-glucans were determined at 0, 4, 8, 10 and 12 h of fermentation. The total β-glucan content decreased from 4.89% to 4.23% after 12 h of fermentation. The soluble β-glucan concentration increased from 1.89% to 2.18% and then decreased to 1.97% after 8 h of fermentation. The content of β-glucans with MW > 105 decreased from 0 to 4 h of fermentation, followed by an increase and then a decrease after 8 h. The oat sourdough fermented for 8 h had high viscosity, which could be more beneficial for health and bread texture quality, especially for gluten-free breads. International Journal of Food Science and Technology

Multidecadal, county-level analysis of the effects of land use, Bt cotton, and weather on cotton pests in China
Zhang, Wei ; Lu, Yanhui ; Werf, Wopke van der; Huang, Jikun ; Wu, Feng ; Zhou, Ke ; Deng, Xiangzheng ; Jiang, Yuying ; Wu, Kongming ; Rosegrant, Mark W. - \ 2018
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 115 (2018)33. - ISSN 0027-8424 - p. E7700 - E7709.
Bt-cotton - Climate change - Insecticide use - Integrated pest management - Land use diversity

Long-term changes in land use, climate, and agricultural technologies may affect pest severity and management. The influences of these major drivers can only be identified by analyzing long-term data. This study examines panel data on land use, adoption of genetically modified Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) insect-resistant cotton, weather, pest severity, and insecticide use on three major cotton pests for 51 counties in China during 1991–2015. Bt cotton had pervasive effects on the whole pest complex in cotton and its management. Adoption resulted in major reductions in insecticide use for bollworm control. The resulting restoration of aphid biological control decreased aphid severity. However, mirid bugs, which have few effective natural enemies in cotton, increased in severity with warming May and reduced insecticide spraying against bollworm. The effects of landscape on pest severity were pest specific. The severity of cotton aphid and mirid bugs decreased with higher land use diversity, but the severity of highly polyphagous cotton bollworm was unrelated to land use diversity. Shares of forest, water body, and unused land area were negatively associated with the severity of mirid bugs, whereas cotton bollworm responded positively to the shares of water body and unused land area. Farmers sprayed insecticides at mild infestation levels and responded aggressively to severe bollworm outbreaks. Findings support the usefulness of Bt-based plant resistance as a component of integrated pest management (IPM) but highlight the potential for unexpected outcomes resulting from agro-ecosystem feedback loops as well as the importance of climate.

Designing Vulnerable Zones of Nitrogen and Phosphorus Transfers to Control Water Pollution in China
Bai, Zhaohai ; Lu, Jie ; Zhao, Hao ; Velthof, Gerard L. ; Oenema, Oene ; Chadwick, Dave ; Williams, John R. ; Jin, Shuqin ; Liu, Hongbin ; Wang, Mengru ; Strokal, Maryna ; Kroeze, Carolien ; Hu, Chunsheng ; Ma, Lin - \ 2018
Environmental Science and Technology 52 (2018)16. - ISSN 0013-936X - p. 8987 - 8988.
Crop pests and predators exhibit inconsistent responses to surrounding landscape composition
Karp, Daniel S. ; Chaplin-Kramer, Rebecca ; Meehan, Timothy D. ; Martin, Emily A. ; Declerck, Fabrice ; Grab, Heather ; Gratton, Claudio ; Hunt, Lauren ; Larsen, Ashley E. ; Martínez-Salinas, Alejandra ; O’Rourke, Megan E. ; Rusch, Adrien ; Poveda, Katja ; Jonsson, Mattias ; Rosenheim, Jay A. ; Schellhorn, Nancy A. ; Tscharntke, Teja ; Wratten, Stephen D. ; Zhang, Wei ; Iverson, Aaron L. ; Adler, Lynn S. ; Albrecht, Matthias ; Alignier, Audrey ; Angelella, Gina M. ; Zubair Anjum, Muhammad ; Avelino, Jacques ; Batáry, Péter ; Baveco, Johannes M. ; Bianchi, Felix J.J.A. ; Birkhofer, Klaus ; Bohnenblust, Eric W. ; Bommarco, Riccardo ; Brewer, Michael J. ; Caballero-López, Berta ; Carrière, Yves ; Carvalheiro, Luísa G. ; Cayuela, Luis ; Centrella, Mary ; Ćetković, Aleksandar ; Henri, Dominic Charles ; Chabert, Ariane ; Costamagna, Alejandro C. ; La Mora, Aldo De; Kraker, Joop De; Desneux, Nicolas ; Diehl, Eva ; Diekötter, Tim ; Dormann, Carsten F. ; Eckberg, James O. ; Entling, Martin H. ; Fiedler, Daniela ; Franck, Pierre ; Veen, F.J.F. van; Frank, Thomas ; Gagic, Vesna ; Garratt, Michael P.D. ; Getachew, Awraris ; Gonthier, David J. ; Goodell, Peter B. ; Graziosi, Ignazio ; Groves, Russell L. ; Gurr, Geoff M. ; Hajian-Forooshani, Zachary ; Heimpel, George E. ; Herrmann, John D. ; Huseth, Anders S. ; Inclán, Diego J. ; Ingrao, Adam J. ; Iv, Phirun ; Jacot, Katja ; Johnson, Gregg A. ; Jones, Laura ; Kaiser, Marina ; Kaser, Joe M. ; Keasar, Tamar ; Kim, Tania N. ; Kishinevsky, Miriam ; Landis, Douglas A. ; Lavandero, Blas ; Lavigne, Claire ; Ralec, Anne Le; Lemessa, Debissa ; Letourneau, Deborah K. ; Liere, Heidi ; Lu, Yanhui ; Lubin, Yael ; Luttermoser, Tim ; Maas, Bea ; Mace, Kevi ; Madeira, Filipe ; Mader, Viktoria ; Cortesero, Anne Marie ; Marini, Lorenzo ; Martinez, Eliana ; Martinson, Holly M. ; Menozzi, Philippe ; Mitchell, Matthew G.E. ; Miyashita, Tadashi ; Molina, Gonzalo A.R. ; Molina-Montenegro, Marco A. ; O’Neal, Matthew E. ; Opatovsky, Itai ; Ortiz-Martinez, Sebaastian ; Nash, Michael ; Östman, Örjan ; Ouin, Annie ; Pak, Damie ; Paredes, Daniel ; Parsa, Soroush ; Parry, Hazel ; Perez-Alvarez, Ricardo ; Perović, David J. ; Peterson, Julie A. ; Petit, Sandrine ; Philpott, Stacy M. ; Plantegenest, Manuel ; Plećaš, Milan ; Pluess, Therese ; Pons, Xavier ; Potts, Simon G. ; Pywell, Richard F. ; Ragsdale, David W. ; Rand, Tatyana A. ; Raymond, Lucie ; Ricci, Benoît ; Sargent, Chris ; Sarthou, Jean-Pierre ; Saulais, Julia ; Schäckermann, Jessica ; Schmidt, Nick P. ; Schneider, Gudrun ; Schüepp, Christof ; Sivakoff, Frances S. ; Smith, Henrik G. ; Stack Whitney, Kaitlin ; Stutz, Sonja ; Szendrei, Zsofia ; Takada, Mayura B. ; Taki, Hisatomo ; Tamburini, Giovanni ; Thomson, Linda J. ; Tricault, Yann ; Tsafack, Noelline ; Tschumi, Matthias ; Valantin-Morison, Muriel ; Trinh, Mai Van; Werf, Wopke Van Der; Vierling, Kerri T. ; Werling, Ben P. ; Wickens, Jennifer B. ; Wickens, Victoria J. ; Woodcock, Ben A. ; Wyckhuys, Kris ; Xiao, Haijun ; Yasuda, Mika ; Yoshioka, Akira - \ 2018
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 115 (2018)33. - ISSN 0027-8424 - p. E7863 - E7870.
IPM
The idea that noncrop habitat enhances pest control and represents a win–win opportunity to conserve biodiversity and bolster yields has emerged as an agroecological paradigm. However, while noncrop habitat in landscapes surrounding farms sometimes benefits pest predators, natural enemy responses remain heterogeneous across studies and effects on pests are inconclusive. The observed heterogeneity in species responses to noncrop habitat may be biological in origin or could result from variation in how habitat and biocontrol are measured. Here, we use a pest-control database encompassing 132 studies and 6,759 sites worldwide to model natural enemy and pest abundances, predation rates, and crop damage as a function of landscape composition. Our results showed that although landscape composition explained significant variation within studies, pest and enemy abundances, predation rates, crop damage, and yields each exhibited different responses across studies, sometimes increasing and sometimes decreasing in landscapes with more noncrop habitat but overall showing no consistent trend. Thus, models that used landscape-composition variables to predict pest-control dynamics demonstrated little potential to explain variation across studies, though prediction did improve when comparing studies with similar crop and landscape features. Overall, our work shows that surrounding noncrop habitat does not consistently improve pest management, meaning habitat conservation may bolster production in some systems and depress yields in others. Future efforts to develop tools that inform farmers when habitat conservation truly represents a win–win would benefit from increased understanding of how landscape effects are modulated by local farm management and the biology of pests and their enemies.
Uncovering the economic value of natural enemies and true costs of chemical insecticides to cotton farmers in China
Huang, Jikun ; Zhou, Ke ; Zhang, Wei ; Deng, Xiangzheng ; Der Werf, Wopke van; Lu, Yanhui ; Wu, Kongming ; Rosegrant, Mark W. - \ 2018
Environmental Research Letters 13 (2018)6. - ISSN 1748-9318
biological control - economic value - insecticides - natural enemies - smallholder farming

Little empirical evidence on the economic value of biological control of pests at farm level is available to improve economic decision-making by farmers and policy makers. Using insect sampling and household survey in an integrated bio-economic analysis framework, this paper studies farmers' crop management practices in cotton in the North China Plain, and estimates the marginal value of natural enemies and costs of chemical insecticides to farmers. Ladybeetles (mainly Harmonia axyridis, Propylea japonica, and Coccinella septempunctata), the dominant natural enemy group that controls the primary pest (aphid) in cotton in our study area, provide a significant economic benefit that is unknown to the farmers. Even at the current high levels of insecticide use, an additional ladybeetle provides an economic benefit of 0.05 CNY (almost USD 0.01) to farmers. The use of broad-spectrum insecticides by farmers is alarmingly excessive, not only undermining farmers' cotton profitability but also inducing social costs as well as disruption of the natural pest suppression system. Doubling current ladybeetle density in cotton field could gain an estimated USD 300 million for cotton farmers in China, providing a strong economic case for policies to move the pest control system towards a more ecologically-based regime, with positive consequences for farm income and environmental health. With rising use of biological control service provided by natural enemies such as ladybeetles in cotton fields, significant falls in farmers' insecticide use would be expected, which could raise the value of ladybeetles and other natural enemies even further. The results indicate that there is an urgent need to rationalize inputs and move forward to improved agro-ecosystem management in smallholder farming system. Raising knowledge and awareness on the costs and value of biological pest control versus insecticides among farmers and policy makers and having effective extension service, are priorities towards achieving a more ecologically-based approach to crop protection on smallholder farms.

Effects of ecological and anthropogenic factors on waterbird abundance at a Ramsar Site in the Yangtze River Floodplain
Zhang, Yong ; Fox, Anthony D. ; Cao, Lei ; Jia, Qiang ; Lu, Changhu ; Prins, Herbert H.T. ; Boer, Willem F. de - \ 2018
Ambio (2018). - ISSN 0044-7447 - 11 p.
Conservation - Feeding guilds - Waterbirds - Wetland management - Yangtze Wetlands

Continuing declines in abundance of many waterbird species on wetland ecosystems require explanations to support effective management interventions. We used 6 year survey data from Shengjin Lake National Nature Reserve in the Yangtze River Floodplain, China, to study the effects of ecological and anthropogenic variables as determinants of waterbird species abundance. Our results showed that effects were guild-dependent, although distance to nearest human settlements had the largest adverse effects on bird abundance across all guilds. These results suggested that although the abundance of waterbird species could be affected by habitat conditions and buffalo grazing activities, Yangtze River Wetlands would most likely benefit most from reduced pressure from the proximity to the surrounding human population. We suggest that screening and/or restricting public access at some key sites may be the most cost-efficient way to restrict or reduce human activity in these wetlands, to improve the conservation status and wintering conditions for these waterbirds.

What drives public acceptance of chemical industrial park policy and project in China?
He, Guizhen ; Boas, Ingrid J.C. ; Mol, Arthur P.J. ; Lu, Yonglong - \ 2018
Resources, Conservation and Recycling 138 (2018). - ISSN 0921-3449 - p. 1 - 12.
Chemical industrial park - China - Industrial policy - Public acceptance

Chemical industrial park (CIP) policy is becoming a vital national strategy of circular economy in China and a means to enhance energy and resource efficiency, environmental performance, and economic competitiveness. It also aims to avoid environmental risks of the decentralized chemical plants that have been a subject of public protests as local citizens’ fear for chemical pollution and human's health. Public acceptance is therefore a major factor determining the success of CIP policy and project. This paper aims to investigate what drives public acceptance and rejection of chemical industrial park policies and projects in China. Our focus is on citizens in three coastal cities located in high environmental and risk sensitive areas: Dalian at Liaoning Province, Maoming at Guangdong Province, and Xiamen at Fujian Province. This is where several chemical industrial parks are (proposed) located. Based on surveys in these three representative cities, we have examined the nature and level of public acceptance towards chemical industrial park policies and projects. Results show that respondents were more positive towards the national policy, but more negative of CIP policy at the city and project level. Public acceptance of CIP policy and project was significantly influenced by factors including income, environmental value, perceived risks, procedural justice, distributive justice, benefits of CIP, and the residential distance to a CIP project. The identified factors provide a basis for anticipating and understanding likely public acceptance and should be considered in decision-making of CIP policy and project.

Inter-laboratory study for the certification of trace elements in seawater certified reference materials NASS-7 and CASS-6
Yang, Lu ; Nadeau, Kenny ; Meija, Juris ; Grinberg, Patricia ; Pagliano, Enea ; Ardini, Francisco ; Grotti, Marco ; Schlosser, Christian ; Streu, Peter ; Achterberg, Eric P. ; Sohrin, Yoshiki ; Minami, Tomoharu ; Zheng, Linjie ; Wu, Jingfeng ; Chen, Gedun ; Ellwood, Michael J. ; Turetta, Clara ; Aguilar-Islas, Ana ; Rember, Robert ; Sarthou, Géraldine ; Tonnard, Manon ; Planquette, Hélène ; Matoušek, Tomáš ; Crum, Steven ; Mester, Zoltán - \ 2018
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 410 (2018)18. - ISSN 1618-2642 - p. 4469 - 4479.
Certification of trace metals in seawater certified reference materials (CRMs) NASS-7 and CASS-6 is described. At the National Research Council Canada (NRC), column separation was performed to remove the seawater matrix prior to the determination of Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Pb, Mn, Mo, Ni, U, V, and Zn, whereas As was directly measured in 10-fold diluted seawater samples, and B was directly measured in 200-fold diluted seawater samples. High-resolution inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (HRICPMS) was used for elemental analyses, with double isotope dilution for the accurate determination of B, Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Pb, Mo, Ni, U, and Zn in seawater NASS-7 and CASS-6, and standard addition calibration for As, Co, Mn, and V. In addition, all analytes were measured using standard addition calibration with triple quadrupole (QQQ)-ICPMS to provide a second set of data at NRC. Expert laboratories worldwide were invited to contribute data to the certification of trace metals inNASS-7 and CASS-6.
Various analytical methods were employed by participants including column separation, co-precipitation, and simple dilution coupled to ICPMS detection or flow injection analysis coupled to chemiluminescence detection, with use of double isotope dilution calibration, matrix matching external calibration, and standard addition calibration. Results presented in this study show that majority of laboratories have demonstrated their measurement capabilities for the accurate determination of trace metals in seawater. As a result of this comparison, certified/reference values and associated uncertainties were assigned for 14 elements in seawater CRMs NASS-7 and CASS-6, suitable for the validation of methods used for seawater analysis.
Increasing Methane Emissions From Natural Land Ecosystems due to Sea-Level Rise
Lu, Xiaoliang ; Zhou, Yuyu ; Zhuang, Qianlai ; Prigent, Catherine ; Liu, Yaling ; Teuling, Adriaan - \ 2018
Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences 123 (2018)5. - ISSN 2169-8953 - p. 1756 - 1768.
Methane emission - Modeling - Sea-level rise

Atmospheric methane (CH4) is one of the most important greenhouse gases. However, there is still a large uncertainty in simulating CH4 emissions from terrestrial ecosystems. Different from modeling studies focusing on response of CH4 emissions to various environmental changes in land ecosystems, this study analyzed the response of CH4 emissions to sea-level rise (SLR). To do so, a large-scale surface water routing module was incorporated into an existing CH4 model. This allowed the model to simulate the effect of SLR on river flows and inland water levels. This study focused on these freshwater systems and did not address saltwater intrusion or coastal wetland impacts. Both the annual maximum inundation extent and CH4 emissions at the global level showed a steadily growing trend, with an increase of 1.21 × 105 km2 in extent and an increase of 3.13 Tg CH4/year in CH4 emissions, in a 22-year SLR experiment from 1993 to 2014. Most of new inundation and methane source areas were located near rivers' deltas and along downstream reaches of rivers. The increase in the inundation extent is primarily influenced by precipitation, channel geomorphic characteristics, and topography of riverside area. The increase of CH4 emissions due to the SLR is largely determined by the inundation extent, but other factors such as air temperature and carbon storage also play roles. Although the current SLR-induced increases in the inundation extent and CH4 emissions only accounted for 1.0% and 1.3% of their global totals, these increases contributed 7.0% and 17.3% of the mean annual variability in both, respectively, during the study period. Considering that SLR has a long-term increasing trend, future SLR under a changing climate could play a more important role in global CH4 emissions.

Using a social learning configuration to increase Vietnamese smallholder farmers’ adaptive capacity to respond to climate change
Phuong, Le Thi Hong ; Wals, Arjen ; Sen, Le Thi Hoa ; Hoa, Nguyen Quoc ; Lu, Phan Van; Biesbroek, Robbert - \ 2018
Local Environment 23 (2018)8. - ISSN 1354-9839 - p. 879 - 897.
adaptive capacity - Social learning - social learning configuration - Vietnamese smallholder farmers

Social learning is crucial for local smallholder farmers in developing countries to improve their adaptive capacity and to adapt to the current and projected impacts of climate change. While it is widely acknowledged that social learning is a necessary condition for adaptation, few studies have systematically investigated under which conditions particular forms of social learning are most successful in improving adaptive capacity of the most vulnerable groups. This study aims to design, implement and evaluate a social learning configuration in a coastal community in Vietnam. We make use of various methods during four workshop-based interventions with local smallholder farmers: interviews with key farmers and commune leaders, farmer-to-farmer learning, participatory observations and focus group discussions. The methods for evaluation of social learning configuration include in-depth interviews, focus group discussions and structured survey interviews. Our findings show that the social learning configuration used in this study leads to an increased problem ownership, an enhanced knowledge-base with regard to climate change impacts and production adaptation options, improved ability to see connections and interdependencies and finally, strengthened relationships and social cohesion. The results suggest that increased social learning in the community leads to increase in adaptive capacity of smallholder farmers and improves both their economic and environmental sustainability. We discuss the key lessons for designing learning configurations that can successfully enhance adaptive capacity and smallholder farmers’ agency and responsiveness to the challenges posed by climate change impacts.

Peeking at a plant through the holes in the wall - exploring the roles of plasmodesmata
Lu, Kuan Ju ; Danila, Florence R. ; Cho, Yueh ; Faulkner, Christine - \ 2018
New Phytologist 218 (2018)4. - ISSN 0028-646X - p. 1310 - 1314.
Calcium wave - Circadian clock - Genome transfer - Intercellular communication - Pathogen and symbiotic interaction - Plasmodesmata
Plasmodesmata (PD) are membrane-line pores that connect neighbouring plant cells and allow molecular exchange via the symplast. Past studies have revealed the basic structure of PD, some of the transport mechanisms for molecules through PD, and a variety of physiological processes in which they function. Recently, with the help of newly developed technologies, several exciting new features of PD have been revealed. New PD structures were observed during early formation of PD and between phloem sieve elements and phloem pole pericycle cells in roots. Both observations challenge our current understanding of PD structure and function. Research into novel physiological responses, which are regulated by PD, indicates that we have not yet fully explored the potential contribution of PD to overall plant function. In this Viewpoint article, we summarize some of the recent advances in understanding the structure and function of PD and propose the challenges ahead for the community.
Major threats of pollution and climate change to global coastal ecosystems and enhanced management for sustainability
Lu, Y. ; Yuan, J. ; Lu, X. ; Su, Chao ; Zhang, Y. ; Wang, C. ; Cao, X. ; Li, Q. ; Su, Jilan ; Ittekkot, Venugopalan ; Garbutt, Richard Angus ; Bush, S.R. ; Fletcher, Stephen ; Wagey, Tonny ; Kachur, Anatolii ; Sweijd, Neville - \ 2018
Environmental Pollution 239 (2018). - ISSN 0269-7491 - p. 670 - 680.
coastal ecosystem - marine pollution - climate change - ecological impacts - coastal sustainability
Coastal zone is of great importance in the provision of various valuable ecosystem services. However, it is also sensitive and vulnerable to environmental changes due to high human populations and interactions between the land and ocean. Major threats of pollution from over enrichment of nutrients, increasing metals and persistent organic pollutants (POPs), and climate change have led to severe ecological degradation in the coastal zone, while few studies have focused on the combined impacts of pollution and climate change on the coastal ecosystems at the global level. A global overview of nutrients, metals, POPs, and major environmental changes due to climate change and their impacts on coastal ecosystems was carried out in this study. Coasts of the Eastern Atlantic and Western Pacific were hotspots of concentrations of several pollutants, and mostly affected by warming climate. These hotspots shared the same features of large populations, heavy industry and (semi-) closed sea. Estimation of coastal ocean capital, integrated management of land-ocean interaction in the coastal zone, enhancement of integrated global observation system, and coastal ecosystem-based management can play effective roles in promoting sustainable management of coastal marine ecosystems. Enhanced management from the perspective of mitigating pollution and climate change was proposed.
Use of physiologically based kinetic modelling-facilitated reverse dosimetry to convert in vitro cytotoxicity data to predicted in vivo liver toxicity of lasiocarpine and riddelliine in rat
Chen, Lu ; Ning, Jia ; Louisse, Jochem ; Wesseling, Sebas ; Rietjens, Ivonne M.C.M. - \ 2018
Food and Chemical Toxicology 116 (2018). - ISSN 0278-6915 - p. 216 - 226.
In vitro-in vivo extrapolation - Lasiocarpine - Liver toxicity - Physiologically based kinetic (PBK) model - Reverse dosimetry - Riddelliine
Lasiocarpine and riddelliine are pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) present in food and able to cause liver toxicity. The aim of this study was to investigate whether physiologically based kinetic (PBK) modelling-facilitated reverse dosimetry can adequately translate in vitro concentration-response curves for toxicity of lasiocarpine and riddelliine to in vivo liver toxicity data for the rat. To this purpose, PBK models were developed for lasiocarpine and riddelliine, and predicted blood concentrations were compared to available literature data to evaluate the models. Concentration-response curves obtained from in vitro cytotoxicity assays in primary rat hepatocytes were converted to in vivo dose-response curves from which points of departure (PODs) were derived and that were compared to available literature data on in vivo liver toxicity. The results showed that the predicted PODs fall well within the range of PODs derived from available in vivo toxicity data. To conclude, this study shows the proof-of-principle for a method to predict in vivo liver toxicity for PAs by an alternative testing strategy integrating in vitro cytotoxicity assays with in silico PBK modelling-facilitated reverse dosimetry. The approach may facilitate prediction of acute liver toxicity for the large number of PAs for which in vivo toxicity data are lacking.
Income Groups, Social Capital, and Collective Action on Small-Scale Irrigation Facilities : A Multigroup Analysis Based on a Structural Equation Model
Miao, Shanshan ; Heijman, Wim ; Zhu, Xueqin ; Qiao, Dan ; Lu, Qian - \ 2018
Rural Sociology (2018). - ISSN 0036-0112
This article examines whether relationships between social capital characteristics and the willingness of farmers to cooperate in collective action is moderated by the farmers' income level. We employed a structural equation model to analyze the influence of social capital components (social networks, interpersonal trust, social reciprocity, and social participation) on the willingness of farmers to cooperate in collective small-scale irrigation in Guangling County, Shanxi Province of China. This analysis was complemented by a multigroup analysis to measure the potential variance effects across income groups. Our results show that low- and middle-income farmers give more importance to the aspects of social networks, social reciprocity, and social participation, while high-income farmers place emphasis on interpersonal trust and social participation. Accordingly, the willingness of farmers to cooperate for the different income groups was influenced in different ways in relation to the various social capital components. Therefore, social capital and income differences have complex effects on the willingness of farmers to cooperate. In this regard, our research provides an alternative way to understand the complex process involved in the formation of collective action under the presence of increasing economic heterogeneity in local communities.
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