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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    Quantitative comparison between the rhizosphere effect of Arabidopsis thaliana and co-occurring plant species with a longer life history
    Schneijderberg, Martinus ; Cheng, Xu ; Franken, Carolien ; Hollander, Mattias de; Velzen, Robin van; Schmitz, Lucas ; Heinen, Robin ; Geurts, Rene ; Putten, Wim H. van der; Bezemer, Martijn T. ; Bisseling, Ton - \ 2020
    ISME Journal (2020). - ISSN 1751-7362

    As a model for genetic studies, Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) offers great potential to unravel plant genome-related mechanisms that shape the root microbiome. However, the fugitive life history of this species might have evolved at the expense of investing in capacity to steer an extensive rhizosphere effect. To determine whether the rhizosphere effect of Arabidopsis is different from other plant species that have a less fugitive life history, we compared the root microbiome of Arabidopsis to eight other, later succession plant species from the same habitat. The study included molecular analysis of soil, rhizosphere, and endorhizosphere microbiome both from the field and from a laboratory experiment. Molecular analysis revealed that the rhizosphere effect (as quantified by the number of enriched and depleted bacterial taxa) was ~35% lower than the average of the other eight species. Nevertheless, there are numerous microbial taxa differentially abundant between soil and rhizosphere, and they represent for a large part the rhizosphere effects of the other plants. In the case of fungal taxa, the number of differentially abundant taxa in the Arabidopsis rhizosphere is 10% of the other species’ average. In the plant endorhizosphere, which is generally more selective, the rhizosphere effect of Arabidopsis is comparable to other species, both for bacterial and fungal taxa. Taken together, our data imply that the rhizosphere effect of the Arabidopsis is smaller in the rhizosphere, but equal in the endorhizosphere when compared to plant species with a less fugitive life history.

    Bladderworts, the smallest known suction feeders, generate inertia-dominated flows to capture prey
    Müller, Ulrike K. ; Berg, Otto ; Schwaner, Janneke M. ; Brown, Matthew D. ; Li, Gen ; Voesenek, Cees J. ; Leeuwen, Johan L. van - \ 2020
    New Phytologist (2020). - ISSN 0028-646X
    carnivorous plants - functional morphology - plant biomechanics - suction feeding - Utricularia australis - Utricularia gibba

    Aquatic bladderworts (Utricularia gibba and U. australis) capture zooplankton in mechanically triggered underwater traps. With characteristic dimensions less than 1 mm, the trapping structures are among the smallest known to capture prey by suction, a mechanism that is not effective in the creeping-flow regime where viscous forces prevent the generation of fast and energy-efficient suction flows. To understand what makes suction feeding possible on the small scale of bladderwort traps, we characterised their suction flows experimentally (using particle image velocimetry) and mathematically (using computational fluid dynamics and analytical mathematical models). We show that bladderwort traps avoid the adverse effects of creeping flow by generating strong, fast-onset suction pressures. Our findings suggest that traps use three morphological adaptations: the trap walls' fast release of elastic energy ensures strong and constant suction pressure; the trap door's fast opening ensures effectively instantaneous onset of suction; the short channel leading into the trap ensures undeveloped flow, which maintains a wide effective channel diameter. Bladderwort traps generate much stronger suction flows than larval fish with similar gape sizes because of the traps' considerably stronger suction pressures. However, bladderworts' ability to generate strong suction flows comes at considerable energetic expense.

    The case for improving crop carbon sink strength or plasticity for a CO2-rich future
    Dingkuhn, Michael ; Luquet, Delphine ; Fabre, Denis ; Muller, Bertrand ; Yin, Xinyou ; Paul, Matthew J. - \ 2020
    Current Opinion in Plant Biology (2020). - ISSN 1369-5266

    Atmospheric CO2 concentration [CO2] has increased from 260 to 280 μmol mol−1 (level during crop domestication up to the industrial revolution) to currently 400 and will reach 550 μmol mol−1 by 2050. C3 crops are expected to benefit from elevated [CO2] (e-CO2) thanks to photosynthesis responsiveness to [CO2] but this may require greater sink capacity. We review recent literature on crop e-CO2 responses, related source-sink interactions, how abiotic stresses potentially interact, and prospects to improve e-CO2 response via breeding or genetic engineering. Several lines of evidence suggest that e-CO2 responsiveness is related either to sink intrinsic capacity or adaptive plasticity, for example, involving enhanced branching. Wild relatives and old cultivars mostly showed lower photosynthetic rates, less downward acclimation of photosynthesis to e-CO2 and responded strongly to e-CO2 due to greater phenotypic plasticity. While reverting to such archaic traits would be an inappropriate strategy for breeding, we argue that substantial enhancement of vegetative sink vigor, inflorescence size and/or number and root sinks will be necessary to fully benefit from e-CO2. Potential ideotype features based on enhanced sinks are discussed. The generic ‘feast-famine’ sugar signaling pathway may be suited to engineer sink strength tissue-specifically and stage-specifically and help validate ideotype concepts. Finally, we argue that models better accounting for acclimation to e-CO2 are needed to predict which trait combinations should be targeted by breeders for a CO2-rich world.

    New insights on the estimation of the anaerobic biodegradability of plant material : Identifying valuable plants for sustainable energy production
    Pabón-Pereira, Claudia P. ; Hamelers, H.V.M. ; Matilla, Irene ; Lier, Jules B. van - \ 2020
    Processes 8 (2020)7. - ISSN 2227-9717
    Anaerobic digestion - Biodegradability - Fiber degradation - Lignocellulosics

    Based on fifteen European plant species, a statistical model for the estimation of the anaerobic biodegradability of plant material was developed. We show that this new approach represents an accurate and cost-eective method to identify valuable energy plants for sustainable energy production. In particular, anaerobic biodegradability (Bo) of lignocellulosic material was empirically found to be related to the amount of cellulose plus lignin, as analytically assessed by the van Soest method, i.e., the acid detergent fiber (ADF) value. Apart from being theoretically meaningful, the ADF-based empirical model requires the least eort compared to the other four proposed conceptual models proposed, as individual fractions of cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin do not need to be assessed, which also enhances the predictive accuracy of the model's estimation. The model's results showed great predictability power, allowing us to identify interesting crops for sustainable crop rotations. Finally, the model was used to predict Bo of 114 European plant samples that had been previously characterized by means of the van Soest method.

    Uncovering dryland woody dynamics using optical, microwave, and field data-prolonged above-average rainfall paradoxically contributes to woody plant die-off in the Western Sahel
    Bernardino, Paulo N. ; Brandt, Martin ; Keersmaecker, Wanda De; Horion, Stéphanie ; Fensholt, Rasmus ; Storms, Ilié ; Wigneron, Jean Pierre ; Verbesselt, Jan ; Somers, Ben - \ 2020
    Remote Sensing 12 (2020)14. - ISSN 2072-4292
    Drought - Drylands - NDVI - Passive microwave - Time series - Vegetation optical depth - Woody vegetation dynamics

    Dryland ecosystems are frequently struck by droughts. Yet, woody vegetation is often able to recover from mortality events once precipitation returns to pre-drought conditions. Climate change, however, may impact woody vegetation resilience due to more extreme and frequent droughts. Thus, better understanding how woody vegetation responds to drought events is essential. We used a phenology-based remote sensing approach coupled with field data to estimate the severity and recovery rates of a large scale die-off event that occurred in 2014-2015 in Senegal. Novel low (L-band) and high-frequency (Ku-band) passive microwave vegetation optical depth (VOD), and optical MODIS data, were used to estimate woody vegetation dynamics. The relative importance of soil, human-pressure, and before-drought vegetation dynamics influencing the woody vegetation response to the drought were assessed. The die-off in 2014-2015 represented the highest dry season VOD drop for the studied period (1989-2017), even though the 2014 drought was not as severe as the droughts in the 1980s and 1990s. The spatially explicit Die-off Severity Index derived in this study, at 500 m resolution, highlights woody plants mortality in the study area. Soil physical characteristics highly affected die-off severity and post-disturbance recovery, but pre-drought biomass accumulation (i.e., in areas that benefited from above-normal rainfall conditions before the 2014 drought) was the most important variable in explaining die-off severity. This study provides new evidence supporting a better understanding of the "greening Sahel", suggesting that a sudden increase in woody vegetation biomass does not necessarily imply a stable ecosystem recovery from the droughts in the 1980s. Instead, prolonged above-normal rainfall conditions prior to a drought may result in the accumulation of woody biomass, creating the basis for potentially large-scale woody vegetation die-off events due to even moderate dry spells.

    Effects of heathland management on seedling recruitment of common juniper (Juniperus communis)
    Frenne, Pieter De; Gruwez, Robert ; Hommel, Patrick W.F.M. ; Schrijver, An De; Huiskes, Rik P.J. ; Waal, Rein W. de; Vangansbeke, Pieter ; Verheyen, Kris - \ 2020
    Plant Ecology and Evolution 153 (2020)2. - ISSN 2032-3913 - p. 188 - 198.
    Germination - Heathland - Juniperus communis - Liming - Rotavation - Seedling survival - Sod cutting

    Background and aims – Common juniper (Juniperus communis L.) is one of the most widespread woody species on the planet. Over recent decades, however, common juniper populations are decreasing in size and number in different regions. Lack of recruitment, caused by extremely low seed viability and the absence of suitable microsites for recruitment, is the key reason for this decline. For successful germination, the seeds need gaps in the existing vegetation and a soil with a relatively high base saturation. The aim of this study was therefore to assess how management actions such as sod cutting, rotavation and liming (alone or in various combinations) influence soil characteristics, seed germination and seedling survival of common juniper. Methods – We installed a sowing experiment across 104 1-m2 plots in four different sites in Belgium and the Netherlands using treatments with different combinations of fencing, sod cutting, rotavation, litter addition and liming. We determined how these treatments affected soil characteristics and how they influenced seed germination and seedling survival. Key results and conclusions – Across the whole experiment, germination rates of juniper seeds were very low (almost always < 1%). Our results confirm that bare ground promotes the germination of juniper seeds. Secondly, higher silt and lutum (clay) proportions in the soil and higher soil organic matter content seemed to have a positive impact on recruitment, possibly due to drought reduction. Management actions that negatively affect those soil characteristics, such as deep sod cutting, should thus be avoided in heathlands on sandy soils. Our results reveal a complex relationship between seedling recruitment success, soil conditions and management of common juniper populations. Overall, combinations of fencing, (superficial) sod cutting and liming or rotavation were most successful.

    Back to the Roots: Revisiting the Use of the Fiber-Rich Cichorium intybusL. Taproots
    Puhlmann, Marie Luise ; Vos, Willem M. de - \ 2020
    Advances in Nutrition 11 (2020)4. - ISSN 2161-8313 - p. 878 - 889.
    chicory roots - dietary fiber - human nutrition - inulin - traditional medicine

    Fibers are increasingly recognized as an indispensable part of our diet and vital for maintaining health. Notably, complex mixtures of fibers have been found to improve metabolic health. Following an analysis of the fiber content of plant-based products, we found the taproot of the chicory plant (Cichorium intybusL.) to be 1 of the vegetables with the highest fiber content, comprising nearly 90% of its dry weight. Chicory roots consist of a mixture of inulin, pectin, and (hemi-)cellulose and also contain complex phytochemicals, such as sesquiterpene lactones that have been characterized in detail. Nowaday, chicory roots are mainly applied as a source for the extraction of inulin, which is used as prebiotic fiber and food ingredient. Chicory roots, however, have long been consumed as a vegetable by humans. The whole root has been used for thousands of years for nutritional, medicinal, and other purposes, and it is still used in traditional dishes in various parts of the world. Here, we summarize the composition of chicory roots to explain their historic success in the human diet. We revisit the intake of chicory roots by humans and describe the different types of use along with their various methods of preparation. Hereby, we focus on the whole root in its complex, natural form, as well as in relation to its constituents, and discuss aspects regarding legal regulation and the safety of chicory root extracts for human consumption. Finally, we provide an overview of the current and future applications of chicory roots and their contribution to a fiber-rich diet.

    Increasing the proportion of plant-based foods available to shift social consumption norms and food choice among non-vegetarians
    Raghoebar, Sanne ; Kleef, Ellen Van; Vet, Emely De - \ 2020
    Sustainability 12 (2020)13. - ISSN 2071-1050
    Animal source foods - Availability - Food choice - Food environments - Plant-based foods - Salience - Social norms

    Increasing the relative availability of plant-based (versus animal source) foods seems promising in shifting consumption, but it remains unknown how and under what circumstances this happens. We performed two availability manipulations including different foods. The impact on food choice, social norm perceptions about what others do (descriptive) or approve of (injunctive), and salience was assessed. Non-vegetarian participants were visually (Study 1, n = 184) or physically (Study 2, n = 276) exposed to (a) four plant-based and two animal source foods or (b) vice versa. Participants chose one food item, either hypothetically (Study 1) or actually (Study 2), and reported the perceived social norms and salience of plant-based and animal source foods. The results showed no direct effects on food choice, injunctive norms, or salience. An increased proportion of plant-based (versus animal source) foods was interpreted in Study 1 as plant-based foods being less often chosen by others, whereas in Study 2, these foods were interpreted as being more often chosen (marginally significant), while animal source foods were interpreted as being less often chosen. The results suggest that a higher availability of plant-based foods influences descriptive norms, but future research should examine aspects potentially contributing to the contradictory normative interpretations (e.g., norm salience).

    Suspensor-derived somatic embryogenesis in Arabidopsis
    Radoeva, Tatyana ; Albrecht, Catherine ; Piepers, Marcel ; Vries, Sacco de; Weijers, Dolf - \ 2020
    Development 147 (2020)13. - ISSN 0950-1991
    Arabidopsis - Plant embryogenesis - Reprogramming - Suspensor - Totipotency

    In many flowering plants, asymmetric division of the zygote generates apical and basal cells with different fates. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the apical cell generates the embryo while the basal cell divides anticlinally, leading to a suspensor of six to nine cells that remain extra-embryonic and eventually senesce. In some genetic backgrounds, or upon ablation of the embryo, suspensor cells can undergo periclinal cell divisions and eventually form a second twin embryo. Likewise, embryogenesis can be induced from somatic cells by various genes, but the relationship with suspensor-derived embryos is unclear. Here, we addressed the nature of the suspensor to embryo fate transformation and its genetic triggers. We expressed most known embryogenesis-inducing genes specifically in suspensor cells. We next analyzed morphology and fate-marker expression in embryos in which suspensor division was activated by different triggers to address the developmental paths towards reprogramming. Our results show that reprogramming of Arabidopsis suspensor cells towards embryonic identity is a specific cellular response that is triggered by defined regulators, follows a conserved developmental trajectory and shares similarity to the process of somatic embryogenesis from post-embryonic tissues.

    Opportunities for seaweed biorefinery
    Lange, Lene ; Grandorf Bak, Urd ; Cole Brandstrup Hansen, Steffen ; Gregersen, Olavur ; Harmsen, Paulien ; Nordberg Karlsson, Eva ; Meyer, Anne ; Mikkelsen, Maria D. ; Broek, Ben van den; Óli Hreggviðsson, Guðmundur - \ 2020
    In: Sustainable Seaweed Technologies / Dolores Torres, M., Kraan, S., Dominguez, H., Elsevier (Advances in Green Chemistry ) - ISBN 9780128179437 - p. 3 - 31.
    This introductory chapter provides an overview of seaweed biorefinery opportunities, providing basis for multiple value chains, contributing to nutrition and health of a growing global population, to local job generation and development, to ecosystem services, and not the least to climate change mitigation and adaptation. A unique and rich diversity of the seaweed components provides the basis for the broad spectrum of value-chains described here. Red, brown, and green seaweeds are phylogenetically very different and this is reflected in their differences in growth, structure, and biochemical composition. Stable supply and high quality of feedstock are essential for unlocking the value-adding potential of seaweeds. A special focus of the chapter is to provide an overview of the range of different methods of seaweed production (through cultivation or from natural growth, collected or cut at the shore). Furthermore, the results of dedicated efforts to develop new deep-sea cultivation technologies of brown seaweed are highlighted. The chapter has a dual message with regard to seaweed processing: the need to develop more environmentally benign biological processing (to replace chemical processing); the advantage (regarding resource efficiency) and opportunities (social and economic) of designing seaweed biorefineries according to the cascading principle. Making optimized use of all valuable components of seaweed biomass, cascading from high-value products, such as skin care, health-promoting food and feed supplements and functional food ingredients; to lower-value products, such as plant stimulants, soil improvers, and bioenergy. Lastly, this introductory chapter provides global perspectives for future development of sustainable seaweed utilization, contributing to the UN-SDGs, providing livelihood and health for more.
    Irrigation management of European greenhouse vegetable crops
    Incrocci, Luca ; Thompson, Rodney B. ; Fernandez-Fernandez, María Dolores ; Pascale, Stefania De; Pardossi, Alberto ; Stanghellini, Cecilia ; Rouphael, Youssef ; Gallardo, Marisa - \ 2020
    Agricultural Water Management 242 (2020). - ISSN 0378-3774
    Bio-stimulants - Crop evapotranspiration - Grafting - Irrigation scheduling - Mulching - Soil sensors - Soilless - Water use efficiency

    In Europe, most greenhouse vegetable crops are grown in soil. Where soilless systems are used, apart from in The Netherlands, Belgium and France, they are mostly free-draining systems, in which nutrient solutions are not recirculated. Both soil-grown and free-draining soilless systems commonly have large nitrate (NO3) leaching loss. Irrigation is a major contributing factor to NO3 leaching loss. Irrigation management of greenhouse vegetable crops needs to be improved to reduce the appreciable N loss to subterranean water and surface water bodies. This article reviews the state-of-the-art, of methods and tools that are available, or are being developed, to optimise irrigation management of both soil- and soilless-grown vegetable crops in greenhouses. Adaptions for greenhouse conditions and cropping cycles of the FAO56 approach to calculate crop water requirements are reviewed. Attention is paid to (i) the developments and suitability of various adaptations of the Penman–Monteith FAO56 equation and simpler equations to calculate reference crop evapotranspiration (ETO), and (ii) equations to calculate crop coefficient (Kc) values under greenhouse conditions, in which cropping cycles may differ appreciably from those of outdoor crops. The various classes of soil/substrate moisture sensors that have been used in greenhouse crops are reviewed, regarding their general suitability and practical use. Their use in both soil and substrate is considered, as are the effects of salinity and the use of some sensors to measure the salinity of the growing media. The use of various plant sensors with vegetable crops under greenhouse conditions is reviewed. The results of a survey that assessed, for greenhouse vegetable crops in Europe, the use of different (a) types of irrigation systems, and (b) irrigation management methods, for both soil and soilless production are presented. Following the revision of this information, recommendations are made regarding the scientific and practical value of the available tools and technologies to aid growers to optimise irrigation management of vegetable crops grown in greenhouses.

    Het importeren van bijenkoninginnen
    Cornelissen, A.C.M. ; Eupen, Julia van; Graham, Heather - \ 2020
    Wageningen : Wageningen University & Research - 1 p.
    Om de introductie van aangifteplichtige bijenziekten te voorkomen, zijn er wetten opgesteld om de import van honingbijen te reguleren. In deze poster wordt uitgelegd welke regels er gelden voor het importeren van bijenkoninginnen en welke rol het nationaal referentie laboratorium bijenziekten (NRL) hierin heeft
    Evolution of nin and NIN-like genes in relation to nodule symbiosis
    Liu, Jieyu ; Bisseling, Ton - \ 2020
    Genes 11 (2020)7. - ISSN 2073-4425 - p. 1 - 15.
    Actinorhizal-like plants - Evolution - Legume - NIN (NODULE INCEPTION) - NLP (NIN-like Proteins) - Root nodule symbiosis

    Legumes and actinorhizal plants are capable of forming root nodules symbiosis with rhizobia and Frankia bacteria. All these nodulating species belong to the nitrogen fixation clade. Most likely, nodulation evolved once in the last common ancestor of this clade. NIN (NODULE INCEPTION) is a transcription factor that is essential for nodulation in all studied species. Therefore, it seems probable that it was recruited at the start when nodulation evolved. NIN is the founding member of the NIN-like protein (NLP) family. It arose by duplication, and this occurred before nodulation evolved. Therefore, several plant species outside the nitrogen fixation clade have NLP(s), which is orthologous to NIN. In this review, we discuss how NIN has diverged from the ancestral NLP, what minimal changes would have been essential for it to become a key transcription controlling nodulation, and which adaptations might have evolved later.

    Live Imaging of embryogenic structures in Brassica napus microspore embryo cultures highlights the developmental plasticity of induced totipotent cells
    Corral-Martínez, Patricia ; Siemons, Charlotte ; Horstman, Anneke ; Angenent, Gerco C. ; Ruijter, Norbert de; Boutilier, Kim - \ 2020
    Plant Reproduction (2020). - ISSN 2194-7953
    Brassica napus - LEAFY COTYLEDON1 - Microspore embryogenesis - Suspensor - Time-lapse imaging - Totipotency

    Key message: In vitro embryo development is highly plastic; embryo cell fate can be re-established in tissue culture through 17 different pathways. Abstract: In most angiosperms, embryo development from the single-celled zygote follows a defined pattern of cell divisions in which apical (embryo proper) and basal (root and suspensor) cell fates are established within the first cell divisions. By contrast, embryos that are induced in vitro in the absence of fertilization show a less regular initial cell division pattern yet develop into histodifferentiated embryos that can be converted into seedlings. We used the Brassica napus microspore embryogenesis system, in which the male gametophyte is reprogrammed in vitro to form haploid embryos, to identify the developmental fates of the different types of embryogenic structures found in culture. Using time-lapse imaging of LEAFY COTYLEDON1-expressing cells, we show that embryogenic cell clusters with very different morphologies are able to form haploid embryos. The timing of surrounding pollen wall (exine) rupture is a major determinant of cell fate in these clusters, with early exine rupture leading to the formation of suspensor-bearing embryos and late rupture to suspensorless embryos. In addition, we show that embryogenic callus, which develops into suspensor-bearing embryos, initially expresses transcripts associated with both basal- and apical-embryo cell fates, suggesting that these two cell fates are fixed later in development. This study reveals the inherent plasticity of in vitro embryo development and identifies new pathways by which embryo cell fate can be established.

    Tomato.
    Heuvelink, E. ; Okello, R.C.O. ; Peet, M. ; Giovannoni, J.J. ; Dorais, M. - \ 2020
    In: The physiology of vegetable crops / Wien, H.C., Stutzel, H., CABI - ISBN 9781786393777 - p. 138 - 178.
    This chapter focuses on the history and botany, global industry, model plant species, genetics, plant breeding, biotechonology, plant development, vegetative growth, reproductive growth, fruit growth, fruit quality components, and environmental and cultural factors affecting growth and productivity of tomato.
    MYB5-like and bHLH influence flavonoid composition in pomegranate
    Arlotta, Carmen ; Puglia, Giuseppe D. ; Genovese, Claudia ; Toscano, Valeria ; Karlova, R.B. ; Beekwilder, M.J. ; Vos, C.H. de; Raccuia, Salvatore A. - \ 2020
    Plant Science 298 (2020). - ISSN 0168-9452
    The fruit of the pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) is an important nutraceutical food rich in polyphenolic compounds, including hydrolysable tannins, anthocyanins and flavonols. Their composition varies according to cultivar, tissue and fruit development stage and is probably regulated by a combination of MYB and bHLH type
    transcription factors (TFs). In this study, metabolomics analysis during fruit developmental stages in the main pomegranate cultivars, Wonderful and Valenciana with contrasting colour of their ripe fruits, showed that flavonols were mostly present in flowers while catechins were highest in unripe fruits and anthocyanins in late fruit
    maturation stages. A novel MYB TF, PgMYB5-like, was identified, which differs from previously isolated pomegranate TFs by unique C-terminal protein motifs and lack of the amino-acid residues conserved among anthocyanins promoting MYBs. In both pomegranate cultivars the expression of PgMYB5-like was high at flowering stage, while it decreased during fruit ripening. A previously identified bHLH-type TF, PgbHLH, also showed high transcript levels at flowering stage in both cultivars, while it showed a decrease in expression during fruit ripening in cv. Valenciana, but not in cv. Wonderful. Functional analysis of both TFs was performed by agroinfiltration into Nicotiana benthamiana leaves. Plants infiltrated with the PgMYB5-like+PgbHLH combined construct showed a specific and significant accumulation of intermediates of the flavonoid pathway, especially dihydroflavonols, while anthocyanins were not produced. Thus, we propose a role for PgMYB5-like and PgbHLH in the first steps of flavonoid production in flowers and in unripe fruits. The expression patterns of these two TFs may be key in determining the differential flavonoid composition in both flowers and fruits of the pomegranate varieties Wonderful and Valenciana.
    Detection of Ralstonia pseudosolanacearum in drain water based on concentration, enrichment and the use of a duplex TaqMan PCR test
    Sedighian, Nasim ; Mendes, O. ; Poleij, L.M. ; Bonants, P.J.M. ; Wolf, J.M. van der - \ 2020
    EPPO Bulletin (2020). - ISSN 0250-8052
    The Ralstonia solanacearum species complex (RSSC) can cause bacterial wilt in a wide variety of plant species, including a number of ornamental glasshouse crops. Recently in Europe, ornamental rose plants for the production of cut flowers and propagation materials have been strongly affected by Ralstonia pseudosolanacearum , phylotype I, biovar 3. To test for the presence of the pathogen in the glasshouse, sampling of water from a drainage gutter or well may be an efficient strategy since it is known that RSSC can be released from infected root systems in the water. A protocol was developed to detect low densities of R. pseudosolanacearum in drain water collected from rose growers. Drain water was filtered through a bacterial filter, the filtrate was collected and target bacteria enriched for 48 h in Semi‐selective Medium South Africa (SMSA) broth supplemented with sterilized tomato plant extracts. DNA extracted from the enrichment broth was analysed using a TaqMan test in a duplex format, based on specific egl sequences of RSSC and the use of an extraction and amplification control. The optimized protocol had a detection level of ≤1–10 colony forming units of R. pseudosolanacearum in drain water.
    The Disruptive 4IR in the Life Sciences: Metabolomics
    Tugizimana, Fidele ; Engel, Jasper ; Salek, Reza ; Dubery, Ian ; Piater, Lizelle ; Burgess, Karl - \ 2020
    In: Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering Springer (Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering ) - p. 227 - 256.
    Artificial intelligence (AI) - Big data - Cloud computing - Cloud metabolomics - Fourth industrial revolution—4IR - Machine learning - Metabolomics

    A new era of systems biology is disruptively emerging, holistically describing biochemical events at both organismal and cellular level. In this new era, emerging ‘-omics’ technologies have brought about a paradigm shift in biological sciences and research. Metabolomics, the youngest of the omics trilogy and defined as the qualitative and quantitative investigation of the entire metabolome of a biological system, has positioned itself as an indispensable methodology to investigate global biochemistry phenomena at a cellular level. Metabolomics is a multidisciplinary research field, involving a convergence of biology, chemistry, chemometrics, statistics and computer science. Metabolomics accordingly can provide unprecedented in-depth explanations and insights of the mechanisms responsible for various physiological conditions, given the innovative developments in analytical technologies (integrating artificial intelligence and machine learning), advancement in chemometric and statistical methods (big data analytics and management), and the integration of orthogonal biological approaches. Thus, the objective of this Chapter is to provide an overview of 4IR in life sciences, illustratively pointing to some aspects in the metabolomics field. The latter, in its ontology, applies different 4IR technologies including big data analytics, machine learning, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence, amongst others. The momentum and maturation of metabolomics is undeniably evident, positively disruptive, and the field has visibly revolutionised the life sciences. The application of metabolomics spans a wide spectrum of the afore-said sciences, including biomedical technology, natural products, and plant biochemistry and—biotechnology research to name a few.

    Mimicry of emergent traits amplifies coastal restoration success
    Temmink, Ralph J.M. ; Christianen, Marjolijn J.A. ; Fivash, Gregory S. ; Angelini, Christine ; Boström, Christoffer ; Didderen, Karin ; Engel, Sabine M. ; Esteban, Nicole ; Gaeckle, Jeffrey L. ; Gagnon, Karine ; Govers, Laura L. ; Infantes, Eduardo ; Katwijk, Marieke M. van; Kipson, Silvija ; Lamers, Leon P.M. ; Lengkeek, Wouter ; Silliman, Brian R. ; Tussenbroek, Brigitta I. van; Unsworth, Richard K.F. ; Yaakub, Siti Maryam ; Bouma, Tjeerd J. ; Heide, Tjisse van der - \ 2020
    Nature Communications 11 (2020)1. - ISSN 2041-1723

    Restoration is becoming a vital tool to counteract coastal ecosystem degradation. Modifying transplant designs of habitat-forming organisms from dispersed to clumped can amplify coastal restoration yields as it generates self-facilitation from emergent traits, i.e. traits not expressed by individuals or small clones, but that emerge in clumped individuals or large clones. Here, we advance restoration science by mimicking key emergent traits that locally suppress physical stress using biodegradable establishment structures. Experiments across (sub)tropical and temperate seagrass and salt marsh systems demonstrate greatly enhanced yields when individuals are transplanted within structures mimicking emergent traits that suppress waves or sediment mobility. Specifically, belowground mimics of dense root mats most facilitate seagrasses via sediment stabilization, while mimics of aboveground plant structures most facilitate marsh grasses by reducing stem movement. Mimicking key emergent traits may allow upscaling of restoration in many ecosystems that depend on self-facilitation for persistence, by constraining biological material requirements and implementation costs.

    Analysis of a monitoring system for bacterial wilt management by seed potato cooperatives in Ethiopia: Challenges and future directions
    Tafesse, Shiferaw ; Lie, Rico ; Mierlo, Barbara van; Struik, Paul C. ; Lemaga, Berga ; Leeuwis, Cees - \ 2020
    Sustainability 12 (2020)9. - ISSN 2071-1050
    Bacterial wilt - Collective action - Disease management - Monitoring system - Seed cooperatives

    Collective action is required to deal with various complex agricultural problems such as invasive weeds and plant diseases that pose a collective risk to farmers. Monitoring systems could help to stimulate collective action and avoid free-riding. The paper develops a novel framework consisting of essential elements of a monitoring system for managing a complex disease like bacterial wilt in potato crops. The framework is used to explore how seed potato cooperatives in Ethiopia operationalised the essential elements of a monitoring system and identifies which challenges remain to be overcome. Data were collected through in-depth interviews, reflective workshops, participant observation, and document analysis. We found that the cooperatives had organised a self-monitoring system to monitor disease occurrence and the disease management practices of their members. Monitoring committees were in charge of the data collection and enforcement of sanctions on farmers who did not adhere to the cooperatives- bylaws. The main challenges included the dependency on visual observation, which does not disclose latent infections, limited financial incentives for the monitoring committee members, lack of trust, weak peer monitoring, and the social and ecological interdependency between producers of ware and seed potatoes. Suggestions are provided to strengthen the monitoring systems of farmers- seed potato cooperatives in Ethiopia. In addition, we discuss the broader value of our novel framework for describing and analysing monitoring systems for future research and intervention.

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