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.

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Influence of temperature on selected life-history traits of black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) reared on two common urban organic waste streams in Kenya
Shumo, Marwa ; Khamis, Fathiya M. ; Tanga, Chrysantus M. ; Fiaboe, Komi K.M. ; Subramanian, Sevgan ; Ekesi, Sunday ; Huis, Arnold Van ; Borgemeister, Christian - \ 2019
Animals 9 (2019)3. - ISSN 2076-2615
Black soldier fly (BSF) - Development - Fecundity - Growth - Longevity - Organic waste bioconversion - Rearing temperature

In sub-Saharan Africa, urban populations are projected to increase by 115% in the coming 15 years. In addition, economic growth and dietary shifts towards animal source foods have put high pressure and demand on agricultural production. The high ecological footprint of meat and dairy production, as well as high feed costs, prevent the livestock sector from meeting the increasing demand in a sustainable manner. Insects such as the black soldier fly (BSF) have been identified as potential alternatives to the conventionally used protein sources in livestock feed due to their rich nutrient content and the fact that they can be reared on organic side streams. Substrates derived from organic byproducts are suitable for industrial large-scale production of insect meal. Although efficient in waste management and in feed production, BSF larvae are very sensitive to the external environment such as temperature and rearing medium. Therefore, we studied the effect of temperature and substrate type, i.e., brewers’ spent grain (SG) and cow dung (CD), on the development and survival of BSF larvae. Both organic substrates were readily available in Nairobi, Kenya, the location of the experiments. In our experiment, 100 3–5-day-old BSF larvae were placed into containers that contained either SG or CD and further treated at temperatures of 15 °C, 20 °C, 25 °C, 30 °C, and 35 °C. The duration of larval development was recorded, and the prepupae were removed, weighed, and placed individually in separate, labeled, 35-mL plastic cups filled with moist sawdust. After emergence, 10 2-day-old adults (5 males and 5 females) from every replica per substrate were transferred into a cage (40 × 40 × 40 cm) and allowed to mate for 24 h at their respective temperatures. The laid egg batches were collected and counted, and the adult flies’ longevity was recorded. The data were subjected to a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) using the general linear model procedure. BSF larvae reared on SG developed faster than those reared on CD; the former also favored higher temperatures for their larval development and emergence into adults. The optimum range was 25–30 °C. With increasing temperatures, the longevity of adult BSF decreased, while the fecundity of females increased. Thus, it is possible to take advantage of the readily available SG waste streams in the urban environments of Kenya to produce BSF larvae-derived livestock feed within a short duration of time and at relatively high temperatures.

Effect of overwintering on survival and vector competence of the West Nile virus vector Culex pipiens
Koenraadt, Constantianus J.M. ; Möhlmann, Tim W.R. ; Verhulst, Niels O. ; Spitzen, Jeroen ; Vogels, Chantal B.F. - \ 2019
Parasites & Vectors 12 (2019)1. - ISSN 1756-3305
Diapause - Longevity - Mosquito - Overwintering - Survival - Vector competence - West Nile virus

Background: West Nile virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne virus that is mainly transmitted among birds by Culex pipiens mosquitoes. The species Cx. pipiens consists of two biotypes named pipiens and molestus, which together can form hybrids. One of the major distinctions between the biotypes is their overwintering behaviour. Adults of biotype pipiens diapause during winter, whereas biotype molestus remains actively blood-feeding. Diapausing may affect survival and vector competence of biotype pipiens. The aims of this study were therefore to identify the biotype composition of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes, to quantify survival throughout the autumn and winter months, and to determine effects of overwintering on vector competence of emerging Cx. pipiens mosquitoes for WNV. Methods: Diapausing mosquitoes were collected at two typical overwintering locations in the Netherlands. A selection of Cx. pipiens mosquitoes was identified to biotype using real-time PCR. Survival of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes during autumn and winter was monitored by placing cages with either field-collected or laboratory-reared females in houses and sheds. Vector competence of field-collected (diapausing) and laboratory-reared (non-diapausing) Cx. pipiens mosquitoes was determined to gain insight in the effect of overwintering on WNV transmission. Results: The majority (92%) of diapausing Cx. pipiens females were identified as biotype pipiens. More than 70% of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes was able to survive for more than four months in sheds, whereas diapausing in houses resulted in 100% mortality in that same period. In contrast, non-diapausing Cx. pipiens biotype pipiens mosquitoes reared in the laboratory died within a week in both houses and sheds. Vector competence of Cx. pipiens mosquitoes that had diapaused during the autumn and winter months was comparable to non-diapausing laboratory-reared mosquitoes. Conclusions: This study confirms that the majority of Cx. pipiens mosquitoes in their typical overwintering site belongs to the pipiens biotype. It shows that more than two-third of diapausing Cx. pipiens mosquitoes is able to survive winter under sheltered winter conditions. Finally, vector competence for WNV of mosquitoes that emerge from overwintering sites is not affected by their relatively old age.

Relating past and present diet to phenotypic and transcriptomic variation in the fruit fly
May, Christina M. ; Zwaan, Bas J. - \ 2017
BMC Genomics 18 (2017)1. - ISSN 1471-2164
Longevity - Phenotypic plasticity - Predictive adaptive response - Ribosome - Silver spoon hypothesis - Transcription
Background: Sub-optimal developmental diets often have adverse effects on long-term fitness and health. One hypothesis is that such effects are caused by mismatches between the developmental and adult environment, and may be mediated by persistent changes in gene expression. However, there are few experimental tests of this hypothesis. Here we address this using the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster. We vary diet during development and adulthood in a fully factorial design and assess the consequences for both adult life history traits and gene expression at middle and old age. Results: We find no evidence that mismatches between developmental and adult diet are detrimental to either lifespan or fecundity. Rather, developmental and adult diet exert largely independent effects on both lifespan and gene expression, with adult diet having considerably more influence on both traits. Furthermore, we find effects of developmental diet on the transcriptome that persist into middle and old-age. Most of the genes affected show no correlation with the observed phenotypic effects of larval diet on lifespan. However, in each sex we identify a cluster of ribosome, transcription, and translation-related genes whose expression is altered across the lifespan and negatively correlated with lifespan. Conclusions: As several recent studies have linked decreased expression of ribosomal and transcription related proteins to increased lifespan, these provide promising candidates for mediating the effects of larval diet on lifespan. We place our findings in the context of theories linking developmental conditions to late-life phenotypes and discuss the likelihood that gene expression differences caused by developmental exposure causally relate to adult ageing phenotypes.
Comparative life history traits of indigenous Italian parasitoids of Drosophila suzukii and their effectiveness at different temperatures
Rossi Stacconi, Marco Valerio ; Panel, Aurore ; Baser, Nuray ; Ioriatti, Claudio ; Pantezzi, Tommaso ; Anfora, Gianfranco - \ 2017
Biological Control 112 (2017). - ISSN 1049-9644 - p. 20 - 27.
Leptopilina heterotoma - Longevity - Pachycrepoideus vindemiae - Spotted wing drosophila - Temperature - Trichopria drosophilae

Drosophila suzukii, or spotted wing drosophila (SWD), is a highly polyphagous invasive pest which has recently invaded Europe and the Americas. Its huge economic impact is due in part to the lack of specialised natural enemies suppressing population outbreaks in newly invaded areas. By establishing new associations, endemic parasitoid species native to the invaded areas can play an important role in controlling the pest. This study aims to provide a range of baseline information on the developmental parameters and parasitisation efficacy of three Italian populations of D. suzukii parasitoids at different temperatures. The species tested were a larval parasitoid, Leptopilina heterotoma (Thomson), and two pupal parasitoids, Pachycrepoideus vindemiae (Rondani) and Trichopria drosophilae (Perkins). Two comparative experiments were set up: the first assessing longevity and the lifetime fecundity of each species at 23 °C, and the second investigating the effect of temperature on parasitisation efficacy, developmental time and sex-ratio. The results revealed different fecundity patterns for the three parasitoids, probably due to a different level of synovigeny. For T. drosophilae and P. vindemiae, the lifetime sex ratio was biased towards an increasing number of males, whereas L. heterotoma showed the opposite trend. Moreover, temperature markedly affected host-parasitoid interaction and was positively correlated with the parasitoid's developmental time, whereas the sex-ratio was not significantly influenced. On the basis of these experiments, T. drosophilae appears to be the best candidate for developing a biological control strategy.

Optimal nutrition and the ever-changing dietary landscape : a conference report
Shao, A. ; Drewnowski, A. ; Willcox, D.C. ; Krämer, L. ; Lausted, C. ; Eggersdorfer, M. ; Mathers, J. ; Bell, J.D. ; Randolph, R.K. ; Witkamp, R. ; Griffiths, J.C. - \ 2017
European Journal of Nutrition 56 (2017)suppl.1. - ISSN 1436-6207 - 21 p.
Aging - Big data - Bioactives - Biomarkers - Dietary patterns - Dietary supplements - Longevity - Micronutrients - Obesity - Overfed - Phytonutrients - Sarcopenic obesity - Systems approaches - Undernourished - Wellness

The field of nutrition has evolved rapidly over the past century. Nutrition scientists and policy makers in the developed world have shifted the focus of their efforts from dealing with diseases of overt nutrient deficiency to a new paradigm aimed at coping with conditions of excess—calories, sedentary lifestyles and stress. Advances in nutrition science, technology and manufacturing have largely eradicated nutrient deficiency diseases, while simultaneously facing the growing challenges of obesity, non-communicable diseases and aging. Nutrition research has gone through a necessary evolution, starting with a reductionist approach, driven by an ambition to understand the mechanisms responsible for the effects of individual nutrients at the cellular and molecular levels. This approach has appropriately expanded in recent years to become more holistic with the aim of understanding the role of nutrition in the broader context of dietary patterns. Ultimately, this approach will culminate in a full understanding of the dietary landscape—a web of interactions between nutritional, dietary, social, behavioral and environmental factors—and how it impacts health maintenance and promotion.

Fish oil supplements, longevity and aging
Magalhães, João Pedro de; Müller, Michael ; Rainger, G.E. ; Steegenga, Wilma - \ 2016
Aging-US 8 (2016)8. - ISSN 1945-4589 - p. 1578 - 1582.
Fish oil - Health - Longevity - Mice - Omega-3 fatty acids

Fish oil supplementation is of great medical and public interest with epidemiological evidence of health benefits in humans, in particular by conferring protection against heart diseases. Its anti-inflammatory properties have also been reported. Initial results from short-lived mouse strains showed that fish oil can increase lifespan, affecting pathways like inflammation and oxidation thought to be involved in the regulation of aging. Could fish oil and its omega-3 fatty acids act as geroprotectors? Probably not. A new study by Strong et al. challenges the role for fish oil supplementation in aging. Using a large cohort of genetically heterogeneous mice in three sites, part of the Interventions Testing Program of the NIA, Strong et al. show that fish oil supplementation at either low or high dosages has no effect on the lifespan of male or female mice. Although it is still possible that fish oil supplementation has health benefits for specific age-related diseases, it does not appear to slow aging or have longevity benefits.

Genome-wide association study for longevity with whole-genome sequencing in 3 cattle breeds
Zhang, Qianqian ; Guldbrandtsen, Bernt ; Thomasen, Jørn Rind ; Lund, Mogens Sandø ; Sahana, Goutam - \ 2016
Journal of Dairy Science 99 (2016)9. - ISSN 0022-0302 - p. 7289 - 7298.
Cattle - Genome-wide association study - Longevity - Whole-genome sequencing

Longevity is an important economic trait in dairy production. Improvements in longevity could increase the average number of lactations per cow, thereby affecting the profitability of the dairy cattle industry. Improved longevity for cows reduces the replacement cost of stock and enables animals to achieve the highest production period. Moreover, longevity is an indirect indicator of animal welfare. Using whole-genome sequencing variants in 3 dairy cattle breeds, we carried out an association study and identified 7 genomic regions in Holstein and 5 regions in Red Dairy Cattle that were associated with longevity. Meta-analyses of 3 breeds revealed 2 significant genomic regions, located on chromosomes 6 (META-CHR6-88MB) and 18 (META-CHR18-58MB). META-CHR6-88MB overlaps with 2 known genes: neuropeptide G-protein coupled receptor (NPFFR2; 89,052,210-89,059,348 bp) and vitamin D-binding protein precursor (GC; 88,695,940-88,739,180 bp). The NPFFR2 gene was previously identified as a candidate gene for mastitis resistance. META-CHR18-58MB overlaps with zinc finger protein 717 (ZNF717; 58,130,465-58,141,877 bp) and zinc finger protein 613 (ZNF613; 58,115,782-58,117,110 bp), which have been associated with calving difficulties. Information on longevity-associated genomic regions could be used to find causal genes/variants influencing longevity and exploited to improve the reliability of genomic prediction.

Interval from last insemination to culling : I: The genetic background in crossbred sows
Grevenhof, E.M. van; Knol, E.F. ; Heuven, H.C.M. - \ 2015
Livestock Science 181 (2015). - ISSN 1871-1413 - p. 103 - 107.
Crossbred - Culling reason - Heritability - Interval last insemination to culling - Longevity - Sows

Improving longevity of sows is hampered by the lack of accurate and early recording of factors that contribute to reduced longevity. Besides, phenotypic data of parity number at culling or culling reason are potentially collected in purebred individuals, while these animals are not able to show full potential of their longevity due to EBVs, which makes the culling to take place earlier. In contrast to crossbred animals, of which usually very little information is collected, as phenotypes are expensive and difficult to obtain. Longevity is influenced by several culling reasons of which fertility and leg weakness are known to be the most important, although culling reason is unknown or unreliably recorded in crossbreds. To distinguish different reasons for (in)voluntary culling, interval from last insemination to culling (IL2C) might be able to function as an indicator, which could potentially enable us to breed for sow able to fulfil a complete production cycle. The aim is to quantify and understand the mechanism of parity number at culling by analysing the IL2C, in relation to parity number at culling. The results show that IL2C is a heritable trait that can be used in selection, in addition to parity number at culling. Parity number at culling and IL2C are not significantly correlated, which shows the potential to take both traits into account in breeding. By combining improvement of IL2C with improved longevity, economics and welfare of crossbred sows will even further be increased.

Genetic analysis of longevity in Dutch dairy cattle using random regression
Pelt, M.L. van; Meuwissen, T.H.E. ; Jong, G. de; Veerkamp, R.F. - \ 2015
Journal of Dairy Science 98 (2015)6. - ISSN 0022-0302 - p. 4117 - 4130.
Dairy cattle - Longevity - Random regression - Survival

Longevity, productive life, or lifespan of dairy cattle is an important trait for dairy farmers, and it is defined as the time from first calving to the last test date for milk production. Methods for genetic evaluations need to account for censored data; that is, records from cows that are still alive. The aim of this study was to investigate whether these methods also need to take account of survival being genetically a different trait across the entire lifespan of a cow. The data set comprised 112,000 cows with a total of 3,964,449 observations for survival per month from first calving until 72. mo in productive life. A random regression model with second-order Legendre polynomials was fitted for the additive genetic effect. Alternative parameterizations were (1) different trait definitions for the length of time interval for survival after first calving (1, 3, 6, and 12. mo); (2) linear or threshold model; and (3) differing the order of the Legendre polynomial. The partial derivatives of a profit function were used to transform variance components on the survival scale to those for lifespan. Survival rates were higher in early life than later in life (99 vs. 95%). When survival was defined over 12-mo intervals survival curves were smooth compared with curves when 1-, 3-, or 6-mo intervals were used. Heritabilities in each interval were very low and ranged from 0.002 to 0.031, but the heritability for lifespan over the entire period of 72. mo after first calving ranged from 0.115 to 0.149. Genetic correlations between time intervals ranged from 0.25 to 1.00. Genetic parameters and breeding values for the genetic effect were more sensitive to the trait definition than to whether a linear or threshold model was used or to the order of Legendre polynomial used. Cumulative survival up to the first 6. mo predicted lifespan with an accuracy of only 0.79 to 0.85; that is, reliability of breeding value with many daughters in the first 6. mo can be, at most, 0.62 to 0.72, and changes of breeding values are still expected when daughters are getting older. Therefore, an improved model for genetic evaluation should treat survival as different traits during the lifespan by splitting lifespan in time intervals of 6. mo or less to avoid overestimated reliabilities and changes in breeding values when daughters are getting older.

Antioxidants of edible mushrooms
Kozarski, Maja ; Klaus, Anita ; Jakovljevic, Dragica ; Todorovic, Nina ; Vunduk, Jovana ; Petrović, Predrag ; Niksic, Miomir ; Vrvic, Miroslav M. ; Griensven, Leo Van - \ 2015
Molecules 20 (2015)10. - ISSN 1420-3049 - p. 19489 - 19525.
Antioxidants - Edible mushrooms - Health - Life quality - Longevity - Oxidative stress - Reactive oxygen species

Oxidative stress caused by an imbalanced metabolism and an excess of reactive oxygen species (ROS) lead to a range of health disorders in humans. Our endogenous antioxidant defense mechanisms and our dietary intake of antioxidants potentially regulate our oxidative homeostasis. Numerous synthetic antioxidants can effectively improve defense mechanisms, but because of their adverse toxic effects under certain conditions, preference is given to natural compounds. Consequently, the requirements for natural, alternative sources of antioxidant foods identified in edible mushrooms, as well as the mechanistic action involved in their antioxidant properties, have increased rapidly. Chemical composition and antioxidant potential of mushrooms have been intensively studied. Edible mushrooms might be used directly in enhancement of antioxidant defenses through dietary supplementation to reduce the level of oxidative stress. Wild or cultivated, they have been related to significant antioxidant properties due to their bioactive compounds, such as polyphenols, polysaccharides, vitamins, carotenoids and minerals. Antioxidant and health benefits, observed in edible mushrooms, seem an additional reason for their traditional use as a popular delicacy food. This review discusses the consumption of edible mushrooms as a powerful instrument in maintaining health, longevity and life quality.

Interval from last insemination to culling : II: Culling reasons from practise and the correlation with longevity
Hollander, C.A. de; Knol, E.F. ; Heuven, H.C.M. ; Grevenhof, E.M. van - \ 2015
Livestock Science 181 (2015). - ISSN 1871-1413 - p. 25 - 30.
Culling reason - Genetic parameters - Interval from last insemination to culling - Longevity - Sow

This study studied the relation between longevity, the interval from last insemination to culling in days (IL2C) with 7 different cull classes; 1. Reproduction cull class, 2. Production cull class, 3. Locomotion cull class, 4. Accident cull class, 5. General disorder cull class, 6. Peri-partum cull class and 7. Unknown cull class. Overall, the most important cull classes were reproduction (19%) and production (50%). The IL2C for production (146.3±1.2) and reproduction (87.4±1.9) were significantly different from each other but also from locomotion (127.0±3.6), accident (120.1±7.3), general disorder (105.4±5.5), peri-partum (109.6±5.7) cull classes. Sows that were culled for production reasons had significantly the highest average parity number at culling (4.6±0.2) compared to all other culling reasons such as reproduction (3.1±0.2), locomotion (2.3±0.3), accident (2.9±0.5), general disorder (3.3±0.4) and peri-partum (3.3±0.4) cull classes. Furthermore, it was found that age in days, parity number at culling and IL2C showed to be heritable traits (0.13±0.05, 0.16±0.05 and 0.10±0.04 respectively). The genetic correlation between parity number at culling and IL2C was not significantly different from 0 (-0.04±0.28). Because IL2C is a heritable trait and sows that are culled within the production cull class obtain on average a higher parity and show the longest IL2C, this study showed the potential to select on longer IL2C and thereby select against sows to be culled within the reproduction, locomotion, accident, general disorder and peri-partum cull class and to be culled at the end of a parity.

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