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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Gestegen eiwitniveau in rantsoen is risicovol
Hilhorst, G.J. - \ 2019

kennisdeeldag van Vruchtbare Kringloop Noord-Nederland in het Friese Kollumerzwaag

Government and civil society organizations: Close but comfortable? Lessons from creating the Dutch ‘Strategic Partnerships for Lobby and Advocacy’
Wessel, M.G.J. van; Hilhorst, Dorothea ; Schulpen, Lau ; Biekart, Kees - \ 2019
Development Policy Review (2019). - ISSN 0950-6764 - p. 1 - 26.

Governments commonly support the advocacy role of civil society organizations (CSOs) in development, but studies argue that close linkages between government and CSOs are problematic. The Netherlands’ policy programme ‘Dialogue and Dissent’ brings together the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs (NMFA) and 25 (alliances of) CSOs as advocacy partners. The programme is set up from an awareness of the challenging nature of such collaboration.
We contribute to understanding the ways in which issues with donor–CSO collaboration can be engaged in donor policies.
This paper addresses two questions: To what extent and how does this programme confront and overcome the challenges of close collaboration between government and CSOs? What practical lessons can be learnt?


For this paper, we conducted 33 (group)interviews with CSOs and policy officers involved with the Dialogue and Dissent programme, exploring their understandings, expectations and strategies as partners in the programme. We also analysed CSO programmes, policy documents and publicly available information.


In Dialogue and Dissent, space for dissent, flexibility and relative equality between government and CSOs positively address mutuality and institutional pressures. Challenges remain as estimated strategic significance, diverging capacities and risks to autonomy work against mutuality. Certain challenges are engaged with, but we identified no strategies countering pressures that stem from managerialism within the NMFA, external political pressures and conflicting government objectives. While the programme counters tendencies towards institutionalization of CSOs as insiders, some important challenges to public engagement identified in the literature remain under‐addressed.


Conditions built into policy can address challenges identified in the literature. However, challenges remain that are rooted in wider organizational and political realities. Lessons for practice are: (1) the advocacy role of CSOs can be advanced by building in certain formal conditions and advancing these informally; (2) Flexibility allows for collaboration to develop as government and CSOs negotiate their roles, cognizant of pressures that get in the way; (3) challenges rooted beyond the support policy and government agency involved in the collaboration will constrict the power of policy design; (4) public engagement as a foundation for CSOs’ advocacy roles deserves much more attention.
Viability of recalcitrant Araucaria angustifolia seeds in storage and in a soil seed bank
Gasparin, Ezequiel ; Faria, José M.R. ; José, Anderson C. ; Tonetti, Olivia A.O. ; Melo, Rodrigo A. de; Hilhorst, Henk W.M. - \ 2019
Journal of Forestry Research (2019). - ISSN 1007-662X
Brazilian pine - Desiccation sensitivity - Forest cover - Soil seed bank - Storability

Araucaria angustifolia (Bertol.) Kuntze is a representative species of the Mixed Ombrophilous Forest in the Atlantic Forest Biome of Brazil. The development of a germplasm conservation protocol for long-term seed bank storage is compromised for this species, as it is sensitive to desiccation. Furthermore, in situ establishment of a soil seed bank in its natural habitat may be limited. This study evaluates the storability of two provenances of A. angustifolia seeds and their behavior in an artificial soil seed bank in two forest environments (understory and edge). Results show that both seed provenances may be stored at 5 °C for approximately 12 months, retaining high viability. The subsequent decrease in germination was associated with a reduction and an increase in seed water content, as well as with increased electrical conductivity. In the understory environment, seed viability was above 85% for the first 60 days, and at the end of the experiment (270 days), seedlings emerged. However, at the forest edge, there was a total loss of seed viability after 120 days associated with a reduction in water content and high predation. It is concluded, therefore, that short-term storage of A. angustifolia seeds is possible in a cold room, which is fundamental to supply seed demand outside the production period. Forest cover conservation is important for regeneration and conservation of the species.

Root architecture system of oilseed species from the Jatropha genus during seed development and germination
Brito, Cristiane D. de; Loureiro, Marta B. ; Ribeiro, Paulo R. ; Vasconcelos, Paulo Carvalho T. ; Moreno, Maria Lúcia V. ; Fernandez, Luzimar G. ; Hilhorst, Henk W.M. ; Lammeren, Andre van; Ligterink, Wilco ; Castro, Renato D. de - \ 2019
Industrial Crops and Products 139 (2019). - ISSN 0926-6690
Germination - Guard cells - Root development - Seed embryo

The life cycle of a seed plant involves subsequent stages of development including germination and seedling establishment. Morphological structures have a fundamental role in these phases, since they are strongly related to physiological adaptations to survival in a range of environments. The present study describes an important morphophysiological and anatomical pattern in embryos of Jatropha genus, involving adaptations for germination and seedling growth. Seed embryos of Jatropha curcas, J. gossypiifolia, J. podagrica and J. multifida were examined using different physiological and microscopic assays. Jatropha species present a multimeristematic embryo composed of one main apical primary meristem plus four radial primary meristems. Seed germination is completed by simultaneous protrusion of five functional roots and seedlings are able to survive even with only one of them. The hypocotyl-radicle transition zone exhibiting different stomata sizes, ontogenic phases and short lifespan limited to the germination. Stomata fractures at mid-region due to the fact that guard cells were not lengthen as neighboring epidermal cells, forming a large cavity in the epidermal tissue during seedling growth. The results showed an unusual and complex root structure for the Jatropha genus. The presence of stomata operating strictly during seed germination could be associated to intense energetic metabolism demanded for the simultaneous growth of the five roots originated from the multimeristematic radicle. This study provides important insights into the understanding of seed germination of Jatropha species in response to stress environmental conditions.

Nieuwsbrief koeien & kansen no. 50
Vries, C. de; Simons, L. ; Top, M. van den; Koning, Lisanne ; Sebek, L.B. ; Evers, A.G. ; Hilhorst, G.J. ; Haan, Michel de; Oenema, J. ; Hooijboer, A. ; Nieuwenhuis, Monique - \ 2019
Wageningen : Wageningen Livestock Research
Genetic analysis of the influence of the maternal environment on tomato seed and seedling performance
Geshnizjani, Nafiseh - \ 2019
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): H.W.M. Hilhorst, co-promotor(en): J.W. Ligterink. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463439824 - 163
Genome-level responses to the environment : plant desiccation tolerance
Silva Artur, M.A. ; Dias Costa, M.C. ; Farrant, Jill M. ; Hilhorst, H.W.M. - \ 2019
Emerging Topics in Life Sciences 3 (2019)2. - ISSN 2397-8554 - p. 153 - 163.
Plants being sessile organisms are well equipped genomically to respond to environmental
stressors peculiar to their habitat. Evolution of plants onto land was enabled by the ability to
tolerate extreme water loss (desiccation), a feature that has been retained within genomes
but not universally expressed in most land plants today. In the majority of higher plants,
desiccation tolerance (DT) is expressed only in reproductive tissues (seeds and pollen), but
some 135 angiosperms display vegetative DT. Here, we review genome-level responses
associated with DT, pointing out common and yet sometimes discrepant features, the latter
relating to evolutionary adaptations to particular niches. Understanding DT can lead to the
ultimate production of crops with greater tolerance of drought than is currently realize
The interaction between genotype and maternal nutritional environments affects tomato seed and seedling quality
Geshnizjani, Nafiseh ; Sarikhani Khorami, Saadat ; Willems, Leo A.J. ; Snoek, Basten L. ; Hilhorst, Henk W.M. ; Ligterink, Wilco - \ 2019
Journal of Experimental Botany 70 (2019)10. - ISSN 0022-0957 - p. 2905 - 2918.
Solanum lycopersicum - Solanum pimpinellifolium - Genotype by environment interaction (G×E) - maternal environment - metabolites - seed quality - seedling quality

Seed and seedling traits are affected by the conditions of the maternal environment, such as light, temperature, and nutrient availability. In this study, we have investigated whether different maternally applied nitrate and phosphate concentrations affect the seed and seedling performance of two closely related tomato species: Solanum lycopersicum cv. Money maker and Solanum pimpinellifolium accession CGN14498. We observed large differences for seed and seedling traits between the two species. Additionally, we have shown that for nitrate most of the seed and seedling traits were significantly affected by genotype-environment interactions (G×E). The effect of the maternal environment was clearly visible in the primary metabolites of the dry seeds. For example, we could show that the amount of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in Money maker seeds was affected by the differences in the maternal environments and was positively correlated with seed germination under high temperature. Overall, compared with phosphate, nitrate had a larger effect on seed and seedling performance in tomato. In general, the different responses to the maternal environments of the two tomato species showed a major role for G×E in shaping seed and seedling traits.

Induction of desiccation tolerance in desiccation sensitive Citrus limon seeds
Marques, Alexandre ; Nijveen, Harm ; Somi, Charles ; Ligterink, Wilco ; Hilhorst, Henk - \ 2019
Journal of Integrative Plant Biology 61 (2019)5. - ISSN 1672-9072 - p. 624 - 638.

Many economically important perennial species bear recalcitrant seeds, including tea, coffee, cocoa, mango, citrus, rubber, oil palm and coconut. Orthodox seeds can be dried almost completely without losing viability, but so-called recalcitrant seeds have a very limited storage life and die upon drying below a higher critical moisture content than orthodox seeds. As a result, the development of long-term storage methods for recalcitrant seeds is compromised. Lowering this critical moisture content would be very valuable since dry seed storage is the safest, most convenient and cheapest method for conserving plant genetic resources. Therefore, we have attempted to induce desiccation tolerance (DT) in the desiccation sensitive seeds of Citrus limon. We show that DT can be induced by paclobutrazol (an inhibitor of gibberellin biosynthesis) and we studied its associated transcriptome to delineate the molecular mechanisms underlying this induction of DT. Paclobutrazol not only interfered with gibberellin related gene expression but also caused extensive changes in expression of genes involved in the biosynthesis and signaling of other hormones. Paclobutrazol induced a transcriptomic switch encompassing suppression of biotic- and induction of abiotic responses. We hypothesize that this is the main driver of the induction of DT by paclobutrazol in C. limon seeds.

Dissecting the genomic diversification of Late Embryogenesis Abundant (LEA) protein gene families in plants
Silva Artur, M.A. ; Zhao, T. ; Ligterink, W. ; Schranz, Eric ; Hilhorst, H.W.M. - \ 2019
Genome Biology 11 (2019)2. - ISSN 1474-7596 - p. 459 - 471.
Late Embryogenesis Abundant (LEA) proteins include eight multi-gene families that are expressed in response to water loss during seed maturation and in vegetative tissues of desiccation tolerant species. To elucidate LEA proteins evolution and diversification, we performed a comprehensive synteny and phylogenetic analyses of the eight gene families across 60 complete plant genomes. Our integrated comparative genomic approach revealed that synteny conservation and diversification contributed to LEA family expansion and functional diversification in plants. We provide examples that: 1) the genomic diversification of the Dehydrin family contributed to differential evolution of amino acid sequences, protein biochemical properties, and gene expression patterns, and led to the appearance of a novel functional motif in angiosperms; 2) ancient genomic diversification contributed to the evolution of distinct intrinsically disordered regions of LEA_1 proteins; 3) recurrent tandem-duplications contributed to the large expansion of LEA_2; and, 4) dynamic synteny diversification played a role on the evolution of LEA_4 and its function on plant desiccation tolerance. Taken together, these results show that multiple evolutionary mechanisms have not only led to genomic diversification, but also to structural and functional plasticity among LEA proteins which have jointly contributed to the adaptation of plants to water-limiting environments.
Droogte op Koeien & Kansen-bedrijven in 2018 : Praktijkervaringen
Haan, Michel de; Verloop, Koos ; Hilhorst, Gerjan - \ 2019
Wageningen : Wageningen Livestock Research (Koeien & Kansen rapport nr. 84) - 46
NADP-MALIC ENZYME 1 Affects Germination after Seed Storage in Arabidopsis thaliana
Yazdanpanah, F. ; Maurino, Veronica ; Buijs, G. ; Karimi Jashni, M. ; Willems, L.A.J. ; Sergeeva, L. ; Rajjou, Loïc ; Hilhorst, H.W.M. ; Bentsink, L. - \ 2019
Plant and Cell Physiology 60 (2019)2. - ISSN 0032-0781 - p. 318 - 328.
Aging decreases the quality of seeds and results in agricultural
and economic losses. The damage that occurs at the
biochemical level can alter the seed physiological status.
Although loss of viability has been investigated frequently,
little information exists on the molecular and biochemical
factors involved in seed deterioration and loss of viability.
Oxidative stress has been implicated as a major contributor
to seed deterioration, and several pathways are involved in
protection against this. In this study, we show that seeds of
Arabidopsis thaliana lacking a functional NADP-MALIC
ENZYME 1 (NADP-ME1) have reduced seed viability relative
to the wild type. Seeds of the NADP-ME1 loss-of-function
mutant display higher levels of protein carbonylation than
those of the wild type. NADP-ME1 catalyzes the oxidative
decarboxylation of malate to pyruvate with the simultaneous
production of CO2 and NADPH. Upon seed imbibition,
malate and amino acids accumulate in embryos of aged
seeds of the NADP-ME1 loss-of-function mutant compared
with those of the wild type. NADP-ME1 expression is
increased in imbibed aged as compared with non-aged
seeds. NADP-ME1 activity at testa rupture promotes
normal germination of aged seeds. In seedlings of aged
seeds, NADP-ME1 is specifically active in the root meristematic
zone. We propose that NADP-ME1 activity is required
for protecting seeds against oxidation during seed dry
Keywords: Ageing Arabidopsis thaliana Enzyme activity
Gene expression Meristematic zone Metabolite
profiling Oxidative stress Seed longevity.
Conflict, disaster and changing gender roles in Nepal: women’s everyday experiences
Luna, K.C. - \ 2019
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): D.J.M. Hilhorst, co-promotor(en): G. van der Haar; L. Campbell. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463433891 - 183
Unfolding plant desiccation tolerance : evolution, structure, and function of LEA proteins
Silva Artur, Mariana Aline - \ 2019
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): H.W.M. Hilhorst, co-promotor(en): J.W. Ligterink. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463433860 - 174
Lager bodemoverschot door hogere benutting : resultaten KringloopWijzers 2013 t/m 2016 : resultaten stikstofmetingen 2014 t/m 2016
Hilhorst, Gerjan ; Plomp, Marleen - \ 2018
Netherlands : Vruchtbare Kringloop Achterhoek en Liemers - 60
Omweiden - opdrachten
Stienezen, M.W.J. ; Hilhorst, G.J. - \ 2018
Wageningen : Wageningen Livestock Research
Hattum, T. van; Sass-Klaassen, U.G.W. ; Meijl, J.C.M. van; Marcelis, L.F.M. ; Hilhorst, H.W.M. ; Klein Lankhorst, R.M. - \ 2018
2018 : Wageningen University and Research
Uitspoeling risico van maïsstro : resultaten experiment De Marke
Hilhorst, Gerjan ; Verloop, Koos - \ 2018
Wageningen : Wageningen Livestock Research (Koeien & Kansen rapport nr. 83) - 15
Looking beyond conflict: the long-term impact of suffering war crimes on recovery in post-conflict northern Uganda
Atim, Teddy - \ 2018
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): D.J.M. Hilhorst, co-promotor(en): M.G.J. van Wessel; D. Mazurana. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463435369 - 231
Transcriptome profiling of Ricinus communis L. provides new insights underlying the mechanisms towards thermotolerance during seed imbibition and germination
Ribeiro, Paulo R. ; Willems, Leo A.J. ; Silva, Anderson T. ; Fernandez, Luzimar G. ; Castro, Renato D. de; Bucher, Johan ; Snoek, Basten L. ; Hilhorst, Henk W.M. ; Ligterink, Wilco - \ 2018
Industrial Crops and Products 126 (2018). - ISSN 0926-6690 - p. 380 - 393.
Cytochrome P450s - Heat shock proteins - Heat stress - Microarray analysis - Transcriptional regulation

Ricinus communis seeds germinate to a high percentage and faster at 35 °C than at lower temperatures, but with compromised seedling establishment and survival. However, seedlings are able to cope with high temperatures at later stages of seedling establishment if germination occurred at lower temperatures. The identification of this thermo-sensitive window during seed germination suggests that temperature disturb crucial mechanisms that support seedling establishment. We studied the molecular mechanisms that could explain this thermo-sensitive window with a genomics approach using microarray analysis to determine transcriptome changes during seed germination at 20, 25 and 35 °C. Although temperature had a strong effect on the R. communis transcriptome, most of these differences occurred between 6 h of imbibition and the commencement of germination, i.e. radicle protrusion, which coincided with the identified thermo-sensitive window. We identified several responsive genes that might be involved in the thermotolerance of R. communis. Temperature had a major effect on genes involved in energy generating pathways, such as the Calvin-Benson-Bassham cycle, gluconeogenesis, and starch- and triacylglycerol degradation. Transcripts of ATP binding proteins, DNA binding proteins, RNA binding proteins, DNA-directed RNA polymerases, heat shock factor proteins, multiprotein-bridging factor proteins, and zinc finger proteins were also affected by temperature suggesting that transcriptional reprogramming mechanisms were disturbed. Among the downregulated transcripts, three were shared by all three stages: one oxidation-related zinc finger 2, one F-box and wd40 domain protein, and one DNA binding protein/ MYB-like transcription factor. Among the upregulated transcripts, nine were shared by all three stages: one BET1P/SFT1P-like protein 14BB, one low-molecular-weight cysteine-rich protein LCR78, one WD-repeat protein, one GAST1 protein, one adenylate kinase 1/P-loop containing nucleoside triphosphate hydrolases superfamily protein, and four conserved hypothetical proteins. These genes constitute good candidate genes for further characterization of temperature-responsive molecular mechanisms in R. communis, which in turn will provide necessary tools for the exploitation of R. communis by small family farmers under the typical harsh conditions of semiarid regions worldwide.

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