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Plants, Volume 10, Issue 8 (August 2021) – 266 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Microbial biostimulants are receiving increased attention for their potential application in sustainable agriculture, as a powerful tool to ensure crop yield and nutritional values, as well as in adverse environmental conditions. Plant growth promoting microorganisms (PGPMs) can be used alone, in consortium, or in combination with organic matrices such as plant biostimulants. Several studies demonstrated that PGPMs not only positively affect plant growth by modulating physiological parameters, such as hormone level, cell oxidative status, water and nutrient use efficiency, but they can also play a pivotal role as a biological tool to improve fruit quality and limit soil degradation. Here, all these aspects are discussed, along with the importance of implementing the list of beneficial microorganisms to make them available for farmers. View this paper.
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20 pages, 4328 KiB  
Article
Molecular Characterization, Expression Analysis of Carotenoid, Xanthophyll, Apocarotenoid Pathway Genes, and Carotenoid and Xanthophyll Accumulation in Chelidonium majus L.
by Ramaraj Sathasivam, Hyeon Ji Yeo, Chang Ha Park, Minsol Choi, Haejin Kwon, Ji Eun Sim, Sang Un Park and Jae Kwang Kim
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1753; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081753 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2822
Abstract
Chelidonium majus L. is a perennial herbaceous plant that has various medicinal properties. However, the genomic information about its carotenoid biosynthesis pathway (CBP), xanthophyll biosynthesis pathway (XBP), and apocarotenoid biosynthesis pathway (ABP) genes were limited. Thus, the CBP, XBP, and ABP genes of [...] Read more.
Chelidonium majus L. is a perennial herbaceous plant that has various medicinal properties. However, the genomic information about its carotenoid biosynthesis pathway (CBP), xanthophyll biosynthesis pathway (XBP), and apocarotenoid biosynthesis pathway (ABP) genes were limited. Thus, the CBP, XBP, and ABP genes of C. majus were identified and analyzed. Among the 15 carotenoid pathway genes identified, 11 full and 4 partial open reading frames were determined. Phylogenetic analysis of these gene sequences showed higher similarity with higher plants. Through 3D structural analysis and multiple alignments, several distinct conserved motifs were identified, including dinucleotide binding motif, carotene binding motif, and aspartate or glutamate residues. Quantitative RT-PCR showed that CBP, XBP, and ABP genes were expressed in a tissue-specific manner; the highest expression levels were achieved in flowers, followed by those in leaves, roots, and stems. The HPLC analysis of the different organs showed the presence of eight different carotenoids. The highest total carotenoid content was found in leaves, followed by that in flowers, stems, and roots. This study provides information on the molecular mechanisms involved in CBP, XBP, and ABP genes, which might help optimize the carotenoid production in C. majus. The results could also be a basis of further studies on the molecular genetics and functional analysis of CBP, XBP, and ABP genes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Secondary Metabolism in Plants and Plant Cells)
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20 pages, 4969 KiB  
Article
Light Spectral Composition Influences Structural and Eco-Physiological Traits of Solanum lycopersicum L. cv. ‘Microtom’ in Response to High-LET Ionizing Radiation
by Ermenegilda Vitale, Luca Vitale, Giulia Costanzo, Violeta Velikova, Tsonko Tsonev, Palma Simoniello, Veronica De Micco and Carmen Arena
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1752; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081752 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2887
Abstract
This study evaluated if specific light quality (LQ) regimes (white fluorescent, FL; full-spectrum, FS; red-blue, RB) during plant growth modified morphological and photosynthetic traits of Solanum lycopersicum L. ‘Microtom’ plants irradiated at the dry seed stage with 25 Gy 48Ca ions (IR). [...] Read more.
This study evaluated if specific light quality (LQ) regimes (white fluorescent, FL; full-spectrum, FS; red-blue, RB) during plant growth modified morphological and photosynthetic traits of Solanum lycopersicum L. ‘Microtom’ plants irradiated at the dry seed stage with 25 Gy 48Ca ions (IR). The irradiation reduced plant size while it increased leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and relative water content (RWC) compared to the control. FS and RB light regimes determined a decrease of plant height and a rise of RWC compared to FL plants. The irradiation under FS and RB regimes favoured the development of dwarf plants and improved the leaf water status. Under the FL regime, irradiated plants showed reduced photosynthesis and stomatal conductance. The opposite behavior was observed in RB irradiated plants in which gas exchanges were significantly stimulated. RB regime enhanced Rubisco expression in irradiated plants also inducing anatomical and functional adjustments (i.e., increase of leaf thickness and incidence of intercellular spaces). Finally, 48Ca ions did not prevent fruit ripening and the achievement of the ‘seed-to seed’ cycle, irrespective of the LQ regime. Overall, the present study evidenced that RB light regime was the most effective in optimising growth and photosynthetic efficiency of ‘Microtom’ irradiated plants. These outcomes may help to develop proper cultivation protocols for the growth of dwarf tomato in Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems (CELSS). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Abiotic Stress on Plants 2020–2021)
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14 pages, 6597 KiB  
Article
Metabolite Profiling of Dioscorea (Yam) Leaves to Identify Bioactive Compounds Reveals Their Potential as Renewable Resources
by Min-Ji Kim, Su-Young Son, Su-Gyeong Jeon, Jeong-Gu Kim and Choong-Hwan Lee
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1751; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081751 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2896
Abstract
Yams (Dioscorea spp.) are cultivated and consumed as edible tubers, while their leaves are discarded as waste or burned with negative environmental impact. Herein, the metabolites of two yam species (Danma, DAN; Dunggeunma, DUN), harvested in June, July, and August, were profiled [...] Read more.
Yams (Dioscorea spp.) are cultivated and consumed as edible tubers, while their leaves are discarded as waste or burned with negative environmental impact. Herein, the metabolites of two yam species (Danma, DAN; Dunggeunma, DUN), harvested in June, July, and August, were profiled using GC-TOF-MS and UHPLC-LTQ-Orbitrap-MS/MS and the antioxidant activity of the extracts was evaluated to stimulate the utilization of yam leaves as a by-product. We observed that the relative levels of amino acids, organic acids, sugars, and saponins decreased linearly with prolonged harvest time, while fatty acid, phenanthrene, and flavonoid levels gradually increased. Furthermore, the leaf extracts obtained in August exhibited the highest antioxidant activity. To determine the antioxidant-contributing metabolites, OPLS-DA was performed for the leaf metabolites of DAN and DUN leaves harvested in August. Hydroxytyrosol-glucoside, apigenin-rhamnoside, and rutin were more abundant in DUN, while luteolin, phenanthrene derivatives, epicatechin, and kaempferide were relatively higher in DAN and their respective metabolites were positively correlated with the antioxidant activity. Moreover, secondary metabolites were more abundant in the leaves than in the roots, and consequently, the antioxidant activity of the former was also higher. Overall, the potential value of yam leaves as a renewable source of bioactive compounds is proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends in Plants Phytochemistry and Bioactivity Analysis)
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21 pages, 2937 KiB  
Article
Physiological Responses of Young Pea and Barley Seedlings to Plasma-Activated Water
by Dominik Kostoláni, Gervais B. Ndiffo Yemeli, Renáta Švubová, Stanislav Kyzek and Zdenko Machala
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1750; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081750 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 3400
Abstract
This study demonstrates the indirect effects of non-thermal ambient air plasmas (NTP) on seed germination and plant growth. It investigates the effect of plasma-activated water (PAW) on 3-day-old seedlings of two important farm plants—barley and pea. Applying different types of PAW on pea [...] Read more.
This study demonstrates the indirect effects of non-thermal ambient air plasmas (NTP) on seed germination and plant growth. It investigates the effect of plasma-activated water (PAW) on 3-day-old seedlings of two important farm plants—barley and pea. Applying different types of PAW on pea seedlings exhibited stimulation of amylase activity and had no inhibition of seed germination, total protein concentration or protease activity. Moreover, PAW caused no or only moderate oxidative stress that was in most cases effectively alleviated by antioxidant enzymes and proved by in situ visualization of H2O2 and ˙O2. In pea seedlings, we observed a faster turn-over from anaerobic to aerobic metabolism proved by inhibition of alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) activity. Additionally, reactive oxygen/nitrogen species contained in PAW did not affect the DNA integrity. On the other hand, the high level of DNA damage in barley together with the reduced root and shoot length and amylase activity was attributed to the oxidative stress caused by PAW, which was exhibited by the enhanced activity of guaiacol peroxidase or ADH. Our results show the glow discharge PAW at 1 min activation time as the most promising for pea. However, determining the beneficial type of PAW for barley requires further investigation. Full article
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20 pages, 5374 KiB  
Article
Estimating the Effects of a Hurricane on Carbon Storage in Mangrove Wetlands in Southwest Florida
by Lauren N. Griffiths and William J. Mitsch
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1749; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081749 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2712
Abstract
Tropical and subtropical mangrove swamps, under normal conditions, can sequester large amounts of carbon in their soils but as coastal wetlands, they are prone to hurricane disturbances. This study adds to the understanding of carbon storage capabilities of mangrove wetlands and explores how [...] Read more.
Tropical and subtropical mangrove swamps, under normal conditions, can sequester large amounts of carbon in their soils but as coastal wetlands, they are prone to hurricane disturbances. This study adds to the understanding of carbon storage capabilities of mangrove wetlands and explores how these capacities might change within the scope of a changing storm climate. In September 2017, Naples Bay, FL, USA (28°5′ N, 81°47′ W) encountered a direct hit from hurricane Irma, a Saffir–Simpson category 3 storm. By comparing carbon storage, forest community structure, and aboveground productivity collected in 2013 and in 2019, we estimated the effects of hurricane Irma on mangrove functions. Aboveground biomass increased during the study period at a rate of approximately 0.72 kg m−2 yr−1, significantly less than the average found in undisturbed mangrove forests. Soil carbon storage decreased at all study sites. On average, 2.7 kg-C m−2 was lost in the top 20 cm between sample collections. Carbon loss in belowground pools could point to a feedback of mangrove swamps on climate change as they lose their ability to store carbon and increase net atmospheric carbon. Nevertheless, mangrove swamps remain resilient to tropical storms in the long term and can recover their carbon storage capacity in the years following a storm. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wetland Ecology: Plant Adaptations to Changing Wetland Environments)
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19 pages, 12629 KiB  
Article
The Role of Flavonoids in Invasion Strategy of Solidago canadensis L.
by Artur Likhanov, Marian Oliinyk, Nataliia Pashkevych, Andrii Churilov and Mykola Kozyr
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1748; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081748 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 3904
Abstract
This study provides data on the problem of potential complexation of phenolic compounds synthesized by the plants Solidago canadensis L. and Solidago gigantea Ait. with ammonium forms of nitrogen, partly immobilized in the soil. A comparative analysis of secondary metabolites of the studied [...] Read more.
This study provides data on the problem of potential complexation of phenolic compounds synthesized by the plants Solidago canadensis L. and Solidago gigantea Ait. with ammonium forms of nitrogen, partly immobilized in the soil. A comparative analysis of secondary metabolites of the studied plants was performed by HPLC. The leaves of invasively active Solidago canadensis contain nine times more rutin than the plants of Solidago gigantea. Adding to the leaf extracts (v/v1/20) aqueous ammonia solution to pH 8.0 on the chromatograms decreases the intensity or completely causes peaks of flavonoids to disappear; instead, there are peaks of new polar substances (tR 1.5 and 2.0 min). The selective effect of the phenol-ammonium complex on various plant species was revealed. At a concentration of 20 μg/mL, these substances stimulated the formation of lateral roots in soybean seedlings and chrysanthemum cuttings. The suppression of root growth in radish seedlings occurred at a concentration of flavonoids in the extract of 25 μg/mL. In addition, a positive chemotaxis of the Pseudomonas putida (PGPR) was detected in the nitrogen-containing complex based on rutin (5 μg/mL). The identified feature allows PGPR colonization of the root system of Solidago canadensis with corresponding changes in the structure of the microbial community. The ability of the obtained nitrogen-containing polar complexes to regulate the growth processes of plants at extremely low concentration points to promising research in this direction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection The Use and Management of Invasive Plants)
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16 pages, 1725 KiB  
Article
Basic β-1,3-Glucanase from Drosera binata Exhibits Antifungal Potential in Transgenic Tobacco Plants
by Miroslav Rajninec, Monika Fratrikova, Eva Boszoradova, Martin Jopcik, Miroslav Bauer and Jana Libantova
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1747; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081747 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2774
Abstract
The basic β-1,3-glucanase of the carnivorous plant Drosera binata was tested as a purified protein, as well as under the control of a double CaMV35S promoter in transgenic tobacco for its capability to inhibit the growth of Trichoderma viride, Rhizoctonia solani, [...] Read more.
The basic β-1,3-glucanase of the carnivorous plant Drosera binata was tested as a purified protein, as well as under the control of a double CaMV35S promoter in transgenic tobacco for its capability to inhibit the growth of Trichoderma viride, Rhizoctonia solani, Alternaria solani, and Fusarium poae in an in-vitro assay. The purified protein inhibited tested phytopathogens but not the saprophytic fungus T. viride. Out of the analysed transgenic plants, lines 13, 16, 19, and 22 exhibited high DbGluc1 transcript abundance normalised to the actin transcript. Because of DbGluc1 transgene expression, lines 13 and 16 showed a 1.7-fold increase and lines 19 and 22 showed more than a 2-fold increase in total β-1,3-glucanase activity compared to the non-transgenic control. In accordance with the purified β-1,3-glucanase in-vitro antifungal assay, crude protein extracts of lines 19 and 22 significantly inhibited the growth of phytopathogens (14–34%). Further analyses revealed that the complementary action of transgenic β-1,3-glucanase and 20% higher activity of endogenous chitinase(s) in these lines were crucial for maximising the antifungal efficiency of crude protein extracts. Full article
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13 pages, 969 KiB  
Article
Dual-Purpose of the Winged Bean (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus (L.) DC.), the Neglected Tropical Legume, Based on Pod and Tuber Yields
by Sasiprapa Sriwichai, Tidarat Monkham, Jirawat Sanitchon, Sanun Jogloy and Sompong Chankaew
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1746; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081746 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 7552
Abstract
Winged beans (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus (L.) DC.) are grown as a vegetable legume crop in Thailand. All parts of the plant, including pods, seeds, leaves, flowers, and tubers are edible and are rich in protein and nutrients. Although the major consumption of winged [...] Read more.
Winged beans (Psophocarpus tetragonolobus (L.) DC.) are grown as a vegetable legume crop in Thailand. All parts of the plant, including pods, seeds, leaves, flowers, and tubers are edible and are rich in protein and nutrients. Although the major consumption of winged bean is based on pod and tuber yields, only the people of Myanmar and Indonesia utilize winged bean tubers as food materials. The usefulness of the winged bean as an alternative crop for staple food and feed can shed some light on the impact of winged bean. Therefore, the evaluation of the dual purpose of the winged bean based on pod tuber yields is the objective of this study. In this study, ten-winged bean accessions—six accessions obtained from introduced sources and four accessions obtained from local Thai varieties—were laid out in randomized complete block design (RCBD) with three replications at the Agronomy Field Crop Station, Faculty of Agriculture, Khon Kaen University, Khon Kaen, Thailand from September 2019 to April 2020 and from October 2020 to April 2021. Data, including total pod weight, number of pods, pod length, 10-pod weight, and tuber weight were recorded, and the proximate nutrient and mineral contents in the tubers were also determined. The results revealed that the principal effects of year (Y) and genotype (G) were significant for total pod weight and the number of pods. Moreover, the Y × G interactions were principal effects upon the total pod weights and tuber weights. The results indicated that superior genotype and appropriate environmental conditions are key elements in successful winged bean production for both pod and tuber yields. The winged bean accessions W099 and W018 were consistent in both experimental years for pod and tuber yields at 23.6 and 18.36 T/ha and 15.20 and 15.5 T/ha, respectively. Each accession also proved high in tuber protein content at 20.92% and 21.04%, respectively, as well as significant in fiber, energy, and minerals. The results suggest that the winged bean accessions W099 and W018 can be used for dual-purpose winged bean production in Thailand. Full article
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16 pages, 1016 KiB  
Article
Influence of Hydrocarbon-Oxidizing Bacteria on the Growth, Biochemical Characteristics, and Hormonal Status of Barley Plants and the Content of Petroleum Hydrocarbons in the Soil
by Elena Kuzina, Gulnaz Rafikova, Lidiya Vysotskaya, Tatyana Arkhipova, Margarita Bakaeva, Dar’ya Chetverikova, Guzel Kudoyarova, Tatyana Korshunova and Sergey Chetverikov
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1745; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081745 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2532
Abstract
Much attention is paid to the relationship between bacteria and plants in the process of the bioremediation of oil-contaminated soils, but the effect of petroleum degrading bacteria that synthesize phytohormones on the content and distribution of these compounds in plants is poorly studied. [...] Read more.
Much attention is paid to the relationship between bacteria and plants in the process of the bioremediation of oil-contaminated soils, but the effect of petroleum degrading bacteria that synthesize phytohormones on the content and distribution of these compounds in plants is poorly studied. The goal of the present field experiment was to study the effects of hydrocarbon-oxidizing bacteria that produce auxins on the growth, biochemical characteristics, and hormonal status of barley plants in the presence of oil, as well as assessing the effect of bacteria and plants separately and in association with the content of oil hydrocarbons in the soil. The treatment of plants with strains of Enterobacter sp. UOM 3 and Pseudomonas hunanensis IB C7 led to an increase in the length and mass of roots and shoots and the leaf surface index, and an improvement in some parameters of the elements of the crop structure, which were suppressed by the pollutant. The most noticeable effect of bacteria on the plant hormonal system was a decrease in the accumulation of abscisic acid. The data obtained indicate that the introduction of microorganisms weakened the negative effects on plants under abiotic stress caused by the presence of oil. Plant-bacteria associations were more effective in reducing the content of hydrocarbons in the soil and increasing its microbiological activity than when either organism was used individually. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Phytoremediation: New Approaches and Perspectives)
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32 pages, 6017 KiB  
Article
Arabidopsis thaliana Response to Extracellular DNA: Self Versus Nonself Exposure
by Maria Luisa Chiusano, Guido Incerti, Chiara Colantuono, Pasquale Termolino, Emanuela Palomba, Francesco Monticolo, Giovanna Benvenuto, Alessandro Foscari, Alfonso Esposito, Lucia Marti, Giulia de Lorenzo, Isaac Vega-Muñoz, Martin Heil, Fabrizio Carteni, Giuliano Bonanomi and Stefano Mazzoleni
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1744; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081744 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 29 | Viewed by 6101
Abstract
The inhibitory effect of extracellular DNA (exDNA) on the growth of conspecific individuals was demonstrated in different kingdoms. In plants, the inhibition has been observed on root growth and seed germination, demonstrating its role in plant–soil negative feedback. Several hypotheses have been proposed [...] Read more.
The inhibitory effect of extracellular DNA (exDNA) on the growth of conspecific individuals was demonstrated in different kingdoms. In plants, the inhibition has been observed on root growth and seed germination, demonstrating its role in plant–soil negative feedback. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the early response to exDNA and the inhibitory effect of conspecific exDNA. We here contribute with a whole-plant transcriptome profiling in the model species Arabidopsis thaliana exposed to extracellular self- (conspecific) and nonself- (heterologous) DNA. The results highlight that cells distinguish self- from nonself-DNA. Moreover, confocal microscopy analyses reveal that nonself-DNA enters root tissues and cells, while self-DNA remains outside. Specifically, exposure to self-DNA limits cell permeability, affecting chloroplast functioning and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, eventually causing cell cycle arrest, consistently with macroscopic observations of root apex necrosis, increased root hair density and leaf chlorosis. In contrast, nonself-DNA enters the cells triggering the activation of a hypersensitive response and evolving into systemic acquired resistance. Complex and different cascades of events emerge from exposure to extracellular self- or nonself-DNA and are discussed in the context of Damage- and Pathogen-Associated Molecular Patterns (DAMP and PAMP, respectively) responses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 10th Anniversary of Plants—Recent Advances and Perspectives)
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17 pages, 4963 KiB  
Article
P2K1 Receptor, Heterotrimeric Gα Protein and CNGC2/4 Are Involved in Extracellular ATP-Promoted Ion Influx in the Pollen of Arabidopsis thaliana
by Yansheng Wu, Hongmin Yin, Xinyue Liu, Jiawei Xu, Baozhi Qin, Kaili Feng, Erfang Kang and Zhonglin Shang
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1743; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081743 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2501
Abstract
As an apoplastic signal, extracellular ATP (eATP) is involved in plant growth and development. eATP promotes tobacco pollen germination (PG) and pollen tube growth (PTG) by stimulating Ca2+ or K+ absorption. Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying eATP-stimulated ion uptake and their role [...] Read more.
As an apoplastic signal, extracellular ATP (eATP) is involved in plant growth and development. eATP promotes tobacco pollen germination (PG) and pollen tube growth (PTG) by stimulating Ca2+ or K+ absorption. Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying eATP-stimulated ion uptake and their role in PG and PTG are still unclear. Here, ATP addition was found to modulate PG and PTG in 34 plant species and showed a promoting effect in most of these species. Furthermore, by using Arabidopsis thaliana as a model, the role of several signaling components involved in eATP-promoted ion (Ca2+, K+) uptake, PG, and PTG were investigated. ATP stimulated while apyrase inhibited PG and PTG. Patch-clamping results showed that ATP promoted K+ and Ca2+ influx into pollen protoplasts. In loss-of-function mutants of P2K1 (dorn1-1 and dorn1-3), heterotrimeric G protein α subunit (gpa1-1, gpa1-2), or cyclic nucleotide gated ion channel (cngc2, cngc4), eATP-stimulated PG, PTG, and ion influx were all impaired. Our results suggest that these signaling components may be involved in eATP-promoted PG and PTG by regulating Ca2+ or K+ influx in Arabidopsis pollen grains. Full article
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13 pages, 2040 KiB  
Article
Pre- and/or Postharvest Silicon Application Prolongs the Vase Life and Enhances the Quality of Cut Peony (Paeonia lactiflora Pall.) Flowers
by Jinnan Song, Yali Li, Jiangtao Hu, Jaehyeok Lee and Byoung Ryong Jeong
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1742; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081742 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3663
Abstract
Peony is an important ornamental plant and has become increasingly popular for cut flower cultivation. However, a short vase life and frequent poor vase quality severely restrict its market value. The study described herein was conducted to investigate the effects of silicon application [...] Read more.
Peony is an important ornamental plant and has become increasingly popular for cut flower cultivation. However, a short vase life and frequent poor vase quality severely restrict its market value. The study described herein was conducted to investigate the effects of silicon application on the vase life and quality of two cut peony (Paeonia lactiflora Pall.) cultivars, ‘Taebaek’ and ‘Euiseong’. For pre- and/or postharvest silicon application, four experimental groups based on treatments were designed. With silicon treatment, the relevant growth attributes, including the shoot and leaf lengths, stem and bud diameters as well as the leaf width were all remarkably increased. In the postharvest storage, the addition of silicon to the holding solution in the vase was able to significantly extend vase life, delay fresh weight decrease, and improve vase quality, as characterized by the antioxidant enzyme activities and mechanical stem strength. Taken together, silicon application, regardless of the approach, was able to effectively prolong the vase life and enhance the quality of cut peony flowers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Silicon Effects on Stress in Plants)
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13 pages, 1592 KiB  
Article
Influence of the Nitrate-N to Ammonium-N Ratio on Relative Growth Rate and Crude Protein Content in the Duckweeds Lemna minor and Wolffiella hyalina
by Finn Petersen, Johannes Demann, Dina Restemeyer, Andreas Ulbrich, Hans-Werner Olfs, Heiner Westendarp and Klaus-Jürgen Appenroth
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1741; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081741 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4659
Abstract
In order to produce protein-rich duckweed for human and animal consumption, a stable cultivation process, including an optimal nutrient supply for each species, must be implemented. Modified nutrient media, based on the N-medium for duckweed cultivation, were tested on the relative growth rate [...] Read more.
In order to produce protein-rich duckweed for human and animal consumption, a stable cultivation process, including an optimal nutrient supply for each species, must be implemented. Modified nutrient media, based on the N-medium for duckweed cultivation, were tested on the relative growth rate (RGR) and crude protein content (CPC) of Lemna minor and Wolffiella hyalina, as well as the decrease of nitrate-N and ammonium-N in the media. Five different nitrate-N to ammonium-N molar ratios were diluted to 10% and 50% of the original N-medium concentration. The media mainly consisted of agricultural fertilizers. A ratio of 75% nitrate-N and 25% ammonium-N, with a dilution of 50%, yielded the best results for both species. Based on the dry weight (DW), L. minor achieved a RGR of 0.23 ± 0.009 d−1 and a CPC of 37.8 ± 0.42%, while W. hyalina’s maximum RGR was 0.22 ± 0.017 d−1, with a CPC of 43.9 ± 0.34%. The relative protein yield per week and m2 was highest at this ratio and dilution, as well as the ammonium-N decrease in the corresponding medium. These results could be implemented in duckweed research and applications if a high protein content or protein yield is the aim. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Duckweed: Research Meets Applications)
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21 pages, 5934 KiB  
Article
Induction of Conjugation and Zygospore Cell Wall Characteristics in the Alpine Spirogyra mirabilis (Zygnematophyceae, Charophyta): Advantage under Climate Change Scenarios?
by Charlotte Permann, Klaus Herburger, Martin Felhofer, Notburga Gierlinger, Louise A. Lewis and Andreas Holzinger
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1740; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081740 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 4820
Abstract
Extreme environments, such as alpine habitats at high elevation, are increasingly exposed to man-made climate change. Zygnematophyceae thriving in these regions possess a special means of sexual reproduction, termed conjugation, leading to the formation of resistant zygospores. A field sample of Spirogyra with [...] Read more.
Extreme environments, such as alpine habitats at high elevation, are increasingly exposed to man-made climate change. Zygnematophyceae thriving in these regions possess a special means of sexual reproduction, termed conjugation, leading to the formation of resistant zygospores. A field sample of Spirogyra with numerous conjugating stages was isolated and characterized by molecular phylogeny. We successfully induced sexual reproduction under laboratory conditions by a transfer to artificial pond water and increasing the light intensity to 184 µmol photons m−2 s−1. This, however was only possible in early spring, suggesting that the isolated cultures had an internal rhythm. The reproductive morphology was characterized by light- and transmission electron microscopy, and the latter allowed the detection of distinctly oriented microfibrils in the exo- and endospore, and an electron-dense mesospore. Glycan microarray profiling showed that Spirogyra cell walls are rich in major pectic and hemicellulosic polysaccharides, and immuno-fluorescence allowed the detection of arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs) and xyloglucan in the zygospore cell walls. Confocal RAMAN spectroscopy detected complex aromatic compounds, similar in their spectral signature to that of Lycopodium spores. These data support the idea that sexual reproduction in Zygnematophyceae, the sister lineage to land plants, might have played an important role in the process of terrestrialization. Full article
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16 pages, 2112 KiB  
Article
Context-Dependent Effects of Trichoderma Seed Inoculation on Anthracnose Disease and Seed Yield of Bean (Phaseolus vulgaris): Ambient Conditions Override Cultivar-Specific Differences
by Karina Gutiérrez-Moreno, Michelina Ruocco, Maurilia Maria Monti, Octavio Martínez de la Vega and Martin Heil
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1739; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081739 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2581
Abstract
Root colonizing Trichoderma fungi can stimulate plant immunity, but net effects are strain × cultivar-specific and changing ambient conditions further contribute to variable outcomes. Here, we used four Trichoderma spp. to inoculate seeds of four common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) cultivars and [...] Read more.
Root colonizing Trichoderma fungi can stimulate plant immunity, but net effects are strain × cultivar-specific and changing ambient conditions further contribute to variable outcomes. Here, we used four Trichoderma spp. to inoculate seeds of four common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris) cultivars and explored in three different experimental setups the effects on fungal anthracnose after leaf inoculation with Colletotrichum lindemuthianum. Plants growing in pots with field soil under greenhouse conditions exhibited the highest and those in the open field the lowest overall levels of disease. Among 48 Trichoderma strain × bean cultivar × setup combinations, Trichoderma-inoculation enhanced disease in six and decreased disease in ten cases, but with the exception of T. asperellum B6-inoculated Negro San Luis beans, the strain × cultivar-specific effects on anthracnose severity differed among the setups, and anthracnose severity did not predict seed yield in the open field. In the case of Flor de Mayo beans, Trichoderma even reduced yield in anthracnose-free field plots, although this effect was counterbalanced in anthracnose-infected plots. We consider our work as a case study that calls for stronger emphasis on field experiments in the early phases of screenings of Trichoderma inoculants as plant biostimulants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant-Microbe Interactions)
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17 pages, 3327 KiB  
Review
A Review and Evaluation of the Data Supporting Internal Use of Helichrysum italicum
by Katja Kramberger, Saša Kenig, Zala Jenko Pražnikar, Nina Kočevar Glavač and Darja Barlič-Maganja
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1738; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081738 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 4884
Abstract
Helichrysum italicum is a Mediterranean plant with various pharmacological activities. Despite extensive reports on the bioactivity of the plant, its clinically studied applications have not yet been reviewed. The aim of our study was to gather information on the internal use of H. [...] Read more.
Helichrysum italicum is a Mediterranean plant with various pharmacological activities. Despite extensive reports on the bioactivity of the plant, its clinically studied applications have not yet been reviewed. The aim of our study was to gather information on the internal use of H. italicum and its bioactive constituents to determine its efficacy and safety for human use. We reviewed research articles that have not been previously presented in this context and analyzed relevant clinical studies with H. italicum. Cochranelibrary.com revealed six eligible clinical trials with H. italicum that examined indications for pain management, cough, and mental exhaustion. Although the efficacy of H. italicum has been demonstrated both in in vitro tests and in humans, it is difficult to attribute results from clinical trials to H. italicum alone, as it has usually not been tested as the sole component. On the other hand, clinical trials provide positive information on the safety profile since no adverse effects have been reported. We conclude that H. italicum is safe to use internally, while new clinical studies with H. italicum as a single component are needed to prove its efficacy. Based on the recent trend in H. italicum research, further studies are to be expected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mediterranean Plants)
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14 pages, 2007 KiB  
Article
Study on the Regulatory Effects of GA3 on Soybean Internode Elongation
by Fuxin Shan, Rui Zhang, Jin Zhang, Chang Wang, Xiaochen Lyu, Tianyu Xin, Chao Yan, Shoukun Dong, Chunmei Ma and Zhenping Gong
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1737; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081737 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2979
Abstract
Excessive plant height is an important factor that can lead to lodging, which is closely related to soybean yield. Gibberellins are widely used as plant growth regulators in agricultural production. Gibberellic acid (GA3), one of the most effective active gibberellins, has [...] Read more.
Excessive plant height is an important factor that can lead to lodging, which is closely related to soybean yield. Gibberellins are widely used as plant growth regulators in agricultural production. Gibberellic acid (GA3), one of the most effective active gibberellins, has been used to regulate plant height and increase yields. The mechanism through which GA3 regulates internode elongation has been extensively investigated. In 2019 and 2020, we applied GA3 to the stems, leaves, and roots of two soybean cultivars, Heinong 48 (a high-stalk cultivar) and Henong 60 (a dwarf cultivar), and GA3 was also applied to plants whose apical meristem was removed or to girded plants to compare the internode length and stem GA3 content of soybean plants under different treatments. These results suggested that the application of GA3 to the stems, leaves, and roots of soybean increased the internode length and GA3 content in the stems. Application of GA3 decreased the proportion of the pith in the soybean stems and primary xylem while increasing the proportion of secondary xylem. The apical meristem is an important site of GA3 synthesis in soybean stems and is involved in the regulation of stem elongation. GA3 was shown to be transported acropetally through the xylem and laterally between the xylem and phloem in soybean stems. We conclude that the GA3 level in stems is an important factor affecting internode elongation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Development and Morphogenesis)
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9 pages, 19788 KiB  
Brief Report
Antcins from Antrodia cinnamomea and Antrodia salmonea Inhibit Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2) in Epithelial Cells: Can Be Potential Candidates for the Development of SARS-CoV-2 Prophylactic Agents
by K. J. Senthil Kumar, M. Gokila Vani, Han-Wen Hsieh, Chin-Chung Lin and Sheng-Yang Wang
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1736; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081736 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 5261
Abstract
Antcins are newly identified steroid-like compounds from Taiwan’s endemic medicinal mushrooms Antrodia cinnamomea and Antrodia salmonea. Scientific studies of the past two decades confirmed that antcins have various pharmacological activities, including potent anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus [...] Read more.
Antcins are newly identified steroid-like compounds from Taiwan’s endemic medicinal mushrooms Antrodia cinnamomea and Antrodia salmonea. Scientific studies of the past two decades confirmed that antcins have various pharmacological activities, including potent anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) caused the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and is characterized as a significant threat to global public health. It was recently identified that SARS-CoV-2 required angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), a receptor which supports host cell entry and disease onset. Here, we report a novel function of antcins, in which antcins exhibit inhibitory effects on ACE2. Compared to the untreated control group, treatment with various antcins (antcin-A, antcin-B, antcin-C, antcin-H, antcin-I, and antcin-M) significantly inhibited ACE2 activity in cultured human epithelial cells. Indeed, among the investigated antcins, antcin-A, antcin-B, antcin-C, and antcin-I showed a pronounceable inhibition against ACE2. These findings suggest that antcins could be novel anti-ACE2 agents to prevent SARS-CoV-2 host cell entry and the following disease onset. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Phytochemistry)
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16 pages, 33604 KiB  
Article
Genetic Diversity of Wheat Stripe Rust Fungus Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici in Yunnan, China
by Md. Ashraful Alam, Haoxing Li, Akbar Hossain and Mingju Li
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1735; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081735 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3218
Abstract
The stripe rust of wheat is one of the devastating diseases in China, which is caused by fungus Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst). The Yunnan Province of China is located in the south-western part, and holds distinctive geographical and climate [...] Read more.
The stripe rust of wheat is one of the devastating diseases in China, which is caused by fungus Puccinia striiformis f. sp. tritici (Pst). The Yunnan Province of China is located in the south-western part, and holds distinctive geographical and climate features, while wheat growth and epidemics of stripe rust fungus are fully dissimilar to the major wheat-growing regions of China. It is important to discover its origin and migration to control the disease. In this study, 352 isolates were sampled from 11 spots of the Yunnan Province during the wheat growing season from 2004 to 2015 and analyzed with SNPs markers of housekeeping genes. Results revealed that 220 haplotypes were inferred from the concatenating sequences; among them, 5 haplotypes (viz., ‘H86′, ‘H18′, ‘H8′, ‘H15′ and ‘H23′) comprised over 24.5% of the population. The haplotype diversity, nucleotide diversity, mutation rate and recombination events were 0.992, 6.04 × 10−3, 4.46 × 10−3 and 18.0 respectively, which revealed the genetic diversity of Pst populations among all locations. Four grouping methods, such as UPGMA-tree, PCA, PLS-DA and STRUCTURE, were employed for the categorization of the Pst populations conferring to their races and topographical localities. All methods were found significant and mostly had co-linear relations with each other. The analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) conferred total variation was 9.09%, and 86.20% of variation was within the populations. The current study also exposed a comparatively high genetic multiplicity within the population, while low genetic inconsistency among the populations. Furthermore, the molecular records on the gene pole (Nm = 18.45) established that the migration of the stripe rust pathogen occurred among all locations in Yunnan province. The ancestral haplotype was detected in Yuxi. Based on the trajectories of upper airflow and genetic diversity of Pst populations in different locations, it is suggested that the locations Dehong, Dali, Lincang and Baoshan are probably a major source of Pst in Yunnan. Full article
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13 pages, 1521 KiB  
Article
The Effectiveness of Digestate Use for Fertilization in an Agricultural Cropping System
by Modupe Olufemi Doyeni, Urte Stulpinaite, Ausra Baksinskaite, Skaidre Suproniene and Vita Tilvikiene
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1734; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081734 - 22 Aug 2021
Cited by 38 | Viewed by 4119
Abstract
The need to find and maximize the use of alternative sources of nutrients for plants and soil environment have been on the forefront of research in sustainable agriculture. These alternatives have to be affordable, accessible, reproduceable, and efficient to compete with established inorganic [...] Read more.
The need to find and maximize the use of alternative sources of nutrients for plants and soil environment have been on the forefront of research in sustainable agriculture. These alternatives have to be affordable, accessible, reproduceable, and efficient to compete with established inorganic fertilizers while at the same time reduce any potential negative impacts on the environment. We aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of digestate fertilization in an agricultural system over a period of three years. The digestate utilized in the study consisted of animal waste-based digestates, namely pig manure digestate, chicken manure digestate, and cow manure digestate, and were compared with synthetic nitrogen fertilizer. Every year, the digestate and the synthetic nitrogen fertilizer were split applied at the rate of 90 and 80 kg N ha−1. The soil chemical composition after three years of fertilization showed a slight decrease, significantly different nitrogen and carbon changes while phosphorus and potassium were significantly higher in the digestate treatments. The third year of digestate application showed higher grain yield than previous years and the yield from the digestate treatments were significantly different from the synthetic nitrogen fertilizer. The nitrogen use efficiency for the three years was in the range of 20–25 percent in the digestate treatments, with a strong correlation between the nitrogen use efficiency and the grain yield. There were varied results in the grain quality and straw quality in the digestate and synthetic nitrogen fertilizer with no clear trend observed. Our results showed a relatively high potential of animal waste digestates over the short to mid-term use with a positive result obtained in comparison to synthetic nitrogen fertilizer under favorable climatic conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from Conference of CYSENI 2021)
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15 pages, 4599 KiB  
Article
Heat-Stress Responses Differ among Species from Different ‘Bangia’ Clades of Bangiales (Rhodophyta)
by Ho Viet Khoa, Puja Kumari, Hiroko Uchida, Akio Murakami, Satoshi Shimada and Koji Mikami
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1733; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081733 - 22 Aug 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2285
Abstract
The red alga ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1, a ‘Bangia’ 2 clade member, responds to heat stress via accelerated asexual reproduction and acquires thermotolerance based on heat-stress memory. However, whether these strategies are specific to ‘Bangia’ 2, especially ‘ [...] Read more.
The red alga ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1, a ‘Bangia’ 2 clade member, responds to heat stress via accelerated asexual reproduction and acquires thermotolerance based on heat-stress memory. However, whether these strategies are specific to ‘Bangia’ 2, especially ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1, or whether they are employed by all ‘Bangia’ species is currently unknown. Here, we examined the heat-stress responses of ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS2, a newly identified ‘Bangia’ clade 3 member, and Bangia atropurpurea. Intrinsic thermotolerance differed among species: Whereas ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1 survived at 30 °C for 7 days, ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS2 and B. atropurpurea did not, with B. atropurpurea showing the highest heat sensitivity. Under sublethal heat stress, the release of asexual spores was highly repressed in ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS2 and completely repressed in B. atropurpurea, whereas it was enhanced in ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1. ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS2 failed to acquire heat-stress tolerance under sublethal heat-stress conditions, whereas the acquisition of heat tolerance by priming with sublethal high temperatures was observed in both B. atropurpurea and ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1. Finally, unlike ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS1, neither ‘Bangia’ sp. ESS2 nor B. atropurpurea acquired heat-stress memory. These findings provide insights into the diverse heat-stress response strategies among species from different clades of ‘Bangia’. Full article
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14 pages, 1232 KiB  
Review
Auxin and Cytokinin Interplay during Leaf Morphogenesis and Phyllotaxy
by Sajid Hussain, Satyabrata Nanda, Junhua Zhang, Muhammad Ishaq Asif Rehmani, Muhammad Suleman, Gaojie Li and Hongwei Hou
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1732; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081732 - 21 Aug 2021
Cited by 23 | Viewed by 7267
Abstract
Auxins (IAA) and cytokinins (CKs) are the most influential phytohormones, having multifaceted roles in plants. They are key regulators of plant growth and developmental processes. Additionally, their interplay exerts tight control on plant development and differentiation. Although several reviews have been published detailing [...] Read more.
Auxins (IAA) and cytokinins (CKs) are the most influential phytohormones, having multifaceted roles in plants. They are key regulators of plant growth and developmental processes. Additionally, their interplay exerts tight control on plant development and differentiation. Although several reviews have been published detailing the auxin-cytokinin interplay in controlling root growth and differentiation, their roles in the shoot, particularly in leaf morphogenesis are largely unexplored. Recent reports have provided new insights on the roles of these two hormones and their interplay on leaf growth and development. In this review, we focus on the effect of auxins, CKs, and their interactions in regulating leaf morphogenesis. Additionally, the regulatory effects of the auxins and CKs interplay on the phyllotaxy of plants are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Auxin Research Ⅱ)
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15 pages, 3780 KiB  
Article
Effect of Cryopreservation on Proteins from the Ubiquitous Marine Dinoflagellate Breviolum sp. (Family Symbiodiniaceae)
by Hsing-Hui Li, Jia-Lin Lu, Hui-Esther Lo, Sujune Tsai and Chiahsin Lin
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1731; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081731 - 21 Aug 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2183
Abstract
Coral reefs around the world are exposed to thermal stress from climate change, disrupting the delicate symbiosis between the coral host and its symbionts. Cryopreservation is an indispensable tool for the preservation of species, as well as the establishment of a gene bank. [...] Read more.
Coral reefs around the world are exposed to thermal stress from climate change, disrupting the delicate symbiosis between the coral host and its symbionts. Cryopreservation is an indispensable tool for the preservation of species, as well as the establishment of a gene bank. However, the development of cryopreservation techniques for application to symbiotic algae is limited, in addition to the scarceness of related studies on the molecular level impacts post-thawing. Hence, it is essential to set up a suitable freezing protocol for coral symbionts, as well as to analyze its cryo-injury at the molecular level. The objective of this study was to develop a suitable protocol for the coral symbiont Breviolum subjected to two-step freezing. The thawed Breviolum were then cultured for 3, 7, 14, and 28 days before they were analyzed by Western blot for protein expression, light-harvesting protein (LHP), and red fluorescent protein (RFP) and tested by adenosine triphosphate bioassay for cell viability. The results showed the highest cell viability for thawed Breviolum that was treated with 2 M propylene glycol (PG) and 2 M methanol (MeOH) and equilibrated with both cryoprotectants for 30 min and 20 min. Both treatment groups demonstrated a significant increase in cell population after 28 days of culture post-thawing, especially for the MeOH treatment group, whose growth rate was twice of the PG treatment group. Regarding protein expression, the total amounts of each type of protein were significantly affected by cryopreservation. After 28 days of culture, the protein expression for the MeOH treatment group showed no significant difference to that of the control group, whereas the protein expression for the PG treatment group showed a significant difference. Breviolum that were frozen with MeOH recovered faster upon thawing than those frozen with PG. LHP was positively and RFP was negatively correlated with Symbiodiniaceae viability and so could serve as health-informing biomarkers. This work represents the first time to document it in Symbiodiniaceae, and this study established a suitable protocol for the cryopreservation of Breviolum and further refined the current understanding of the impact of low temperature on its protein expression. By gaining further understanding of the use of cryopreservation as a way to conserve Symbiodiniaceae, we hope to make an effort in the remediation and conservation of the coral reef ecosystem and provide additional methods to rescue coral reefs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Cryopreservation)
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13 pages, 1418 KiB  
Review
Green Synthesized Metal Oxide Nanoparticles Mediate Growth Regulation and Physiology of Crop Plants under Drought Stress
by Nadiyah M. Alabdallah, Md. Mahadi Hasan, Inès Hammami, Azzah Ibrahim Alghamdi, Dikhnah Alshehri and Hanan Ali Alatawi
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1730; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081730 - 21 Aug 2021
Cited by 52 | Viewed by 6273
Abstract
Metal oxide nanoparticles (MONPs) are regarded as critical tools for overcoming ongoing and prospective crop productivity challenges. MONPs with distinct physiochemical characteristics boost crop production and resistance to abiotic stresses such as drought. They have recently been used to improve plant growth, physiology, [...] Read more.
Metal oxide nanoparticles (MONPs) are regarded as critical tools for overcoming ongoing and prospective crop productivity challenges. MONPs with distinct physiochemical characteristics boost crop production and resistance to abiotic stresses such as drought. They have recently been used to improve plant growth, physiology, and yield of a variety of crops grown in drought-stressed settings. Additionally, they mitigate drought-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) through the aggregation of osmolytes, which results in enhanced osmotic adaptation and crop water balance. These roles of MONPs are based on their physicochemical and biological features, foliar application method, and the applied MONPs concentrations. In this review, we focused on three important metal oxide nanoparticles that are widely used in agriculture: titanium dioxide (TiO2), zinc oxide (ZnO), and iron oxide (Fe3O4). The impacts of various MONPs forms, features, and dosages on plant growth and development under drought stress are summarized and discussed. Overall, this review will contribute to our present understanding of MONPs’ effects on plants in alleviating drought stress in crop plants. Full article
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14 pages, 4165 KiB  
Article
Micrografting Provides Evidence for Systemic Regulation of Sulfur Metabolism between Shoot and Root
by Ilaria Forieri, Rasha Aref, Markus Wirtz and Rüdiger Hell
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1729; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081729 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2121
Abstract
The uptake of sulfate by roots and its reductive assimilation mainly in the leaves are not only essential for plant growth and development but also for defense responses against biotic and abiotic stresses. The latter functions result in stimulus-induced fluctuations of sulfur demand [...] Read more.
The uptake of sulfate by roots and its reductive assimilation mainly in the leaves are not only essential for plant growth and development but also for defense responses against biotic and abiotic stresses. The latter functions result in stimulus-induced fluctuations of sulfur demand at the cellular level. However, the maintenance and acclimation of sulfur homeostasis at local and systemic levels is not fully understood. Previous research mostly focused on signaling in response to external sulfate supply to roots. Here we apply micrografting of Arabidopsis wildtype knock-down sir1-1 mutant plants that suffer from an internally lowered reductive sulfur assimilation and a concomitant slow growth phenotype. Homografts of wildtype and sir1-1 confirm the hallmarks of non-grafted sir1-1 mutants, displaying substantial induction of sulfate transporter genes in roots and sulfate accumulation in shoots. Heterografts of wildtype scions and sir1-1 rootstocks and vice versa, respectively, demonstrate a dominant role of the shoot over the root with respect to sulfur-related gene expression, sulfate accumulation and organic sulfur metabolites, including the regulatory compound O-acetylserine. The results provide evidence for demand-driven control of the shoot over the sulfate uptake system of roots under sulfur-sufficient conditions, allowing sulfur uptake and transport to the shoot for dynamic responses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Sulfur Network)
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13 pages, 2695 KiB  
Article
Response of Two Different Wheat Varieties to Glow and Afterglow Oxygen Plasma
by Pia Starič, Silva Grobelnik Mlakar and Ita Junkar
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1728; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081728 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2124
Abstract
Cold plasma technology has received significant attention in agriculture due to its effect on the seeds and plants of important cultivars, such as wheat. Due to climate change, wherein increasing temperatures and droughts are frequent, it is important to consider novel approaches to [...] Read more.
Cold plasma technology has received significant attention in agriculture due to its effect on the seeds and plants of important cultivars, such as wheat. Due to climate change, wherein increasing temperatures and droughts are frequent, it is important to consider novel approaches to agricultural production. As increased dormancy levels in wheat are correlated with high temperatures and drought, improving the germination and root growth of wheat seeds could offer new possibilities for seed sowing. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of direct (glow) and indirect (afterglow) radio-frequency (RF) oxygen plasma treatments on the germination of two winter wheat varieties: Apache and Bezostaya 1. The influence of plasma treatment on seed surface morphology was studied using scanning electron microscopy, and it was observed that direct plasma treatment resulted in a high etching and nanostructuring of the seed surface. The effect of plasma treatment on germination was evaluated by measuring the germination rate, counting the number of roots and the length of the root system, and the fresh weight of seedlings. The results of this study indicate that the response of seeds to direct and indirect plasma treatment may be variety-dependent, as differences between the two wheat varieties were observed. Full article
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28 pages, 2912 KiB  
Article
Association Mapping of Physiological and Morphological Traits Related to Crop Development under Contrasting Nitrogen Inputs in a Diverse Set of Potato Cultivars
by Cesar A. Ospina Nieto, Edith T. Lammerts van Bueren, Sjefke Allefs, Peter G. Vos, Gerard van der Linden, Chris A. Maliepaard and Paul C. Struik
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1727; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081727 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2214
Abstract
Ample nitrogen (N) is required for potato production, but its use efficiency is low. N supply strongly interacts with maturity type of the cultivar grown. We assessed whether variation among 189 cultivars grown with 75 or 185 kg available N/ha in 2 years [...] Read more.
Ample nitrogen (N) is required for potato production, but its use efficiency is low. N supply strongly interacts with maturity type of the cultivar grown. We assessed whether variation among 189 cultivars grown with 75 or 185 kg available N/ha in 2 years would allow detecting quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for relevant traits. Using phenotypic data, we estimated various traits and carried out a genome-wide association study (GWAS) with kinship correction. Twenty-four traits and 10,747 markers based on single-nucleotide polymorphisms from a 20K Infinium array for 169 cultivars were combined in the analysis. N level affected most traits and their interrelations and influenced the detection of marker–trait associations; some were N-dependent, others were detected at both N levels. Ninety percent of the latter accumulated on a hotspot on Chromosome 5. Chromosomes 2 and 4 also contained regions with multiple associations. After correcting for maturity, the number of QTLs detected was much lower, especially of those common to both N levels; however, interestingly, the region on Chromosome 2 accumulated several QTLs. There is scope for marker-assisted selection for maturity, with the main purpose of improving characteristics within a narrow range of maturity types, in order to break the strong links between maturity type and traits like N use efficiency. Full article
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12 pages, 1964 KiB  
Article
Metabolomics by UHPLC-Q-TOF Reveals Host Tree-Dependent Phytochemical Variation in Viscum album L.
by Tim Jäger, Carla Holandino, Michelle Nonato de Oliveira Melo, Evelyn Maribel Condori Peñaloza, Adriana Passos Oliveira, Rafael Garrett, Gaétan Glauser, Mirio Grazi, Hartmut Ramm, Konrad Urech and Stephan Baumgartner
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1726; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081726 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2527
Abstract
Viscum album L., commonly known as European mistletoe, is a hemi-parasitic plant of the Santalaceae family. The in vitro and in vivo effects of V. album differ, according to its host tree. However, little is known about the host-dependent phytochemical diversity in V. [...] Read more.
Viscum album L., commonly known as European mistletoe, is a hemi-parasitic plant of the Santalaceae family. The in vitro and in vivo effects of V. album differ, according to its host tree. However, little is known about the host-dependent phytochemical diversity in V. album. In this study, the metabolic profiles of V. album ssp. album from Malus domestica Bork., Quercus robur L., and Ulmus carpinifolia Gled were compared. Leaves, stems, and berries were collected in Switzerland, by the same procedure, in September 2016 and 2017. The methanolic extracts were analyzed by ultra-performance liquid chromatography, coupled to electrospray quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry in positive ionization mode. The data were submitted to partial-least square discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) and the results showed that the V. album ssp. album samples were clustered into three groups, according to the three distinct host trees. Seven compounds, with high VIP scores (variable importance in projection), were responsible for this differentiation. The following four compounds were detected in both the harvest years: arginine, pipecolic acid or lysine, dimethoxycoumarin, and sinapyl alcohol, suggesting their use as host specific V. album biomarkers. The present work highlights the importance of standardized harvest and analytical procedures for the reproducibility of the chemical results of herbal materials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Phytochemistry)
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17 pages, 2232 KiB  
Article
In Vitro Evaluation of the Inhibitory Activity of Different Selenium Chemical Forms on the Growth of a Fusarium proliferatum Strain Isolated from Rice Seedlings
by Elisabetta Troni, Giovanni Beccari, Roberto D’Amato, Francesco Tini, David Baldo, Maria Teresa Senatore, Gian Maria Beone, Maria Chiara Fontanella, Antonio Prodi, Daniela Businelli and Lorenzo Covarelli
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1725; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081725 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2375
Abstract
In this study, the in vitro effects of different Se concentrations (5, 10, 15, 20, and 100 mg kg−1) from different Se forms (sodium selenite, sodium selenate, selenomethionine, and selenocystine) on the development of a Fusarium proliferatum strain isolated from rice [...] Read more.
In this study, the in vitro effects of different Se concentrations (5, 10, 15, 20, and 100 mg kg−1) from different Se forms (sodium selenite, sodium selenate, selenomethionine, and selenocystine) on the development of a Fusarium proliferatum strain isolated from rice were investigated. A concentration-dependent effect was detected. Se reduced fungal growth starting from 10 mg kg−1 and increasing the concentration (15, 20, and 100 mg kg−1) enhanced the inhibitory effect. Se bioactivity was also chemical form dependent. Selenocystine was found to be the most effective at the lowest concentration (5 mg kg−1). Complete growth inhibition was observed at 20 mg kg−1 of Se from selenite, selenomethionine, and selenocystine. Se speciation analysis revealed that fungus was able to change the Se speciation when the lowest Se concentration was applied. Scanning Electron Microscopy showed an alteration of the fungal morphology induced by Se. Considering that the inorganic forms have a higher solubility in water and are cheaper than organic forms, 20 mg kg−1 of Se from selenite can be suggested as the best combination suitable to inhibit F. proliferatum strain. The addition of low concentrations of Se from selenite to conventional fungicides may be a promising alternative approach for the control of Fusarium species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Alternative Measures in Plant Protection)
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17 pages, 1605 KiB  
Article
Biophenolic Profile Modulations in Olive Tissues as Affected by Manganese Nutrition
by Nikolina Vidović, Igor Pasković, Igor Lukić, Paula Žurga, Valerija Majetić Germek, Kristina Grozić, Marin Cukrov, Šime Marcelić, Dean Ban, Nassima Talhaoui, Igor Palčić, Vedran Rubinić and Smiljana Goreta Ban
Plants 2021, 10(8), 1724; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants10081724 - 20 Aug 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2565
Abstract
Manganese (Mn) is an essential element that intervenes in several plant metabolic processes. The olive tree, and its fruits and leaves, are known as a source of nutraceuticals since they are rich in biophenols. However, there is still a serious lack of data [...] Read more.
Manganese (Mn) is an essential element that intervenes in several plant metabolic processes. The olive tree, and its fruits and leaves, are known as a source of nutraceuticals since they are rich in biophenols. However, there is still a serious lack of data about biophenolic distribution in olive stems and roots under Mn fertilisation. In this context, our study aimed to examine the effects of Mn fertilisation on the biophenolic profile in the leaves, stems, and roots of the ‘Istarska bjelica’ olive cultivar. The experiment was set up in a greenhouse, during a period of five months, as a random block design consisting of three treatments with varying Mn concentrations in full-strength Hoagland’s nutrient solution (0.2 µM Mn, 12 µM Mn, and 24 µM Mn). The obtained results indicate that the amount of Mn in the examined olive plant tissues was significantly higher under 12 µM Mn and 24 µM Mn treatments compared to that of the 0.2 µM Mn treatment. While the concentration of biophenols varied in roots depending on the compound in question, a strong positive impact of the increased Mn concentration in nutrient solution (12 µM Mn and 24 µM Mn) on the concentrations of the main biophenolic compounds was observed in stems. The concentration of oleuropein in leaves almost doubled at 24 µM Mn, with the highest Mn concentration, as compared to the 0.2 µM Mn treatment. The obtained results led to the conclusion that the supply of Mn could enhance the concentration of some biologically active compounds in olives grown hydroponically, implying a critical need for further investigation of Mn fertilisation practices in the conventional olive farming system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Polyphenols - from Plants to Human Health Volume II)
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