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Plants, Volume 12, Issue 2 (January-2 2023) – 196 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Interspecific hybrids used to control pathogens are often sterile and require vegetative propagation. Micropropagation provides large numbers of pathogen-free plants to growers year-round. Genotypic variation in rooting Prunus tissue culture was observed in studies focusing on media formulations and plant growth regulator (PGRs) ratios. Micropropagated shoots are often rooted ex vitro during greenhouse acclimatization in an effort to economize, but plant loss can be significant. Here, the effect of nutrient formulations and IBA application techniques on in vitro rooting of eight Prunus genotypes important to breeding was studied to maximize in vitro rooting and its relation to survival and size during ex vitro acclimatization. Maximized plant size with least labor cost was discussed. View this paper
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15 pages, 1141 KiB  
Article
Subterranean Clover and Sulla as Valuable and Complementary Sources of Bioactive Compounds for Rainfed Mediterranean Farming Systems
by Maria Giovanna Molinu, Leonardo Sulas, Giuseppe Campesi, Giovanni Antonio Re, Federico Sanna and Giovanna Piluzza
Plants 2023, 12(2), 417; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020417 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1828
Abstract
Mediterranean pasture and forage legumes are important components of sustainable production systems. Subterranean clover and sulla represent key species having proven high agronomic value and traits for production and multiple services. Our research investigated the potential of the abovementioned species as a source [...] Read more.
Mediterranean pasture and forage legumes are important components of sustainable production systems. Subterranean clover and sulla represent key species having proven high agronomic value and traits for production and multiple services. Our research investigated the potential of the abovementioned species as a source of phenolic compounds and antioxidants for contributing to support their full exploitation in the fodder, animal welfare, and nutraceutical sectors. Antioxidant capacity, as well as the content of total phenolic compounds and individual phenolic compounds, was determined in subterranean clover and sulla shoots at the vegetative, flower bud, flowering, and seed ripening phenological stages. The antioxidant capacity and the phenolic content were affected significantly by harvest time. In subterranean clover, 10 individual phenolic compounds were detected, and isoflavones were the most abundant (3.19–18.27 mg·g−1 DM). Eleven phenolic compounds were identified in sulla shoots, and chlorogenic acid (0.76–3.43 mg·g−1 DM) and diosmin (3.64–4.94 mg·g−1 DM) were the most represented compounds at the vegetative and flower bud stage. On the basis of our findings, a complementary utilization of both legume species is suggested; this might ensure the exploitation of all phenolic compounds in view of the potential benefits for animal production and health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection New Trends in Plant Science in Italy)
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18 pages, 3862 KiB  
Article
A New Species from the Canary Islands Increases the Diversity of the Red Algal Genus Pterocladiella in the Northeastern Atlantic
by Nereida M. Rancel-Rodríguez, Julio Afonso-Carrillo, Ana Tronholm and Marta Sansón
Plants 2023, 12(2), 416; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020416 - 16 Jan 2023
Viewed by 2393
Abstract
Environmental and human factors are inducing a drastic decline in many marine algae in regions with a high floristic richness as in the Canary Islands. Simultaneously, undescribed algal species continue to be discovered, suggesting a probable loss in diversity, before being properly identified [...] Read more.
Environmental and human factors are inducing a drastic decline in many marine algae in regions with a high floristic richness as in the Canary Islands. Simultaneously, undescribed algal species continue to be discovered, suggesting a probable loss in diversity, before being properly identified and catalogued. Turf-forming Gelidiales occur in marine littoral communities from tropical to warm temperate regions and are challenging to identify correctly because of their small size and simple morphology. In the present study, we combined morphological and molecular phylogenetics methods to study a turf-forming species of the genus Pterocladiella from the Canary Islands (NE Atlantic). Both cox1 and rbcL gene analyses revealed a novel species described here, Pterocladiella canariensis sp. nov. The new species has no single unique morphological feature, but it is different by a distinctive combination of attributes, namely, minute size less than 18 mm in height, ribbon-like erect axes, small polygonal cortical cells, cystocarp circular in outline with placental tissue attached to the floor, spermatangial sori with sterile margins with spermatangia simultaneously formed on both sides of the blade, and tetrasporangia arranged in V-shaped rows. Phylogenies inferred from cox1 and concatenated genes (cox1 + rbcL) suggest a link to only two Pterocladiella species endemic to South Africa and Madagascar; nevertheless, the rbcL gene establishes P. canariensis as the earliest divergent lineage of the genus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetic Diversity and Taxonomy of Algae)
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12 pages, 1789 KiB  
Article
LC-MS Analysis and Antifungal Activity of Turnera subulata Sm.
by Jacqueline Cosmo Andrade-Pinheiro, Celestina Elba Sobral de Souza, Daiany Alves Ribeiro, Andressa de Alencar Silva, Viviane Bezerra da Silva, Antonia Thassya Lucas dos Santos, Victor Juno Alencar Fonseca, Delmacia Gonçalves de Macêdo, Rafael Pereira da Cruz, José Weverton Almeida-Bezerra, Antonio Júdson Targino Machado, Thiago Sampaio de Freitas, Edy Sousa de Brito, Paulo Riceli Vasconcelos Ribeiro, José Galberto Martins da Costa, Henrique Douglas Melo Coutinho, Grażyna Kowalska, Rafał Rowiński, Radosław Kowalski and Maria Flaviana Bezerra Morais-Braga
Plants 2023, 12(2), 415; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020415 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2349
Abstract
Fungi of the Candida genus are responsible for invasive candidiasis, which affects people all over the world and has high mortality rates. This is due to their virulence factors, which give them great resistance and pathogenicity. In addition, the emergence of multidrug-resistant strains [...] Read more.
Fungi of the Candida genus are responsible for invasive candidiasis, which affects people all over the world and has high mortality rates. This is due to their virulence factors, which give them great resistance and pathogenicity. In addition, the emergence of multidrug-resistant strains makes it difficult to treat these infections. In this way, natural products have emerged as an alternative to standard drugs, where plants known for their medicinal properties such as Turnera subulata become attractive to research. The present work aimed to analyze the ethanol extract of Turnera subulata leaves against standard strains of Candida albicans, Candida krusei and Candida tropicalis using broth microdilution techniques. The identification of the compounds in T. subulata leaves by LC-MS revealed the presence of a wide variety of substances such as carboxylic acids and terpenes, with flavonoids and fatty acids being more evident. The antifungal assays showed that the extract was not able to inhibit the growth of the tested strains at concentrations with a clinical relevance. However, at higher concentrations, it was able to inhibit the fungal dimorphism of C. albicans and C. tropicalis. It is possible that the T. subulata extract has potential as an inhibitor of fungal virulence factors without affecting the cell viability. Further research should be carried out in order to assess its inhibitory potential for other fungal virulence factors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research of Bioactive Substances in Plant Extracts II)
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16 pages, 2741 KiB  
Article
Ecological Stoichiometric Characteristics in Organs of Ammopiptanthus mongolicus in Different Habitats
by Xue Dong, Jinbo Zhang, Zhiming Xin, Yaru Huang, Chunxia Han, Yonghua Li and Qi Lu
Plants 2023, 12(2), 414; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020414 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1510
Abstract
The essence of plant ecological stoichiometry is to study the relationships between species and their environment, including nutrient absorption, utilization and cycling processes as well as the nutrient limitation of plants. Plants can regulate nutrient elements and adapt to environmental changes. To understand [...] Read more.
The essence of plant ecological stoichiometry is to study the relationships between species and their environment, including nutrient absorption, utilization and cycling processes as well as the nutrient limitation of plants. Plants can regulate nutrient elements and adapt to environmental changes. To understand the adaptation mechanism, it is important to take plants as a whole and quantify the correlation between the chemometrics of different organs. Ammopiptanthus mongolicus is within the second-class group of rare–endangered plants in China and is the only evergreen broad-leaved shrub in desert areas. We analyzed the ecological stoichiometric characteristics of leaves, stems, roots, flowers and seeds of A. mongolicus in five habitats, namely fixed sandy land, semi-fixed sandy land, stony–sandy land, alluvial gravel slope and saline–alkali land. We found that (1) the nutrient contents of N, P and K were in the order of seed > flower > leaf > root > stem. The enrichment of the N, P and K in the reproductive organs promoted the transition from vegetative growth to reproductive growth. Additionally, (2) the contents of C, N, P and K and their stoichiometric ratios in different organs varied among different habitat types. The storage capacity of C, N and P was higher in sandy soil (fixed and semi-fixed sandy land), whereas the content of K was higher in gravelly soil (stony–sandy land and alluvial gravel slope), and the C:N, C:P and N:P were significantly higher in gravelly soil than those in sandy soil. A. mongolicus had higher nutrient use efficiency in stony–sandy land and alluvial gravel slope. Furthermore, (3) the C:N and N:P ratios in each organ were relatively stable among different habitats, whereas the K:P ratio varied greatly. The N:P ratios of leaves were all greater than 16 in different habitats, indicating that the growth was mainly limited by P. Moreover, (4) except for the P element, the content of each element and its stoichiometric ratio were affected by the interaction between organs and habitat. Habitat had a greater impact on C content, whereas organs had a greater influence on N, P and K content and C:N, C:P, C:K and N:P. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sand Vegetation and Restoration)
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18 pages, 1566 KiB  
Review
New Paradigms in Brassinosteroids, Strigolactones, Sphingolipids, and Nitric Oxide Interaction in the Control of Lateral and Adventitious Root Formation
by Maria Maddalena Altamura, Diego Piacentini, Federica Della Rovere, Laura Fattorini, Giuseppina Falasca and Camilla Betti
Plants 2023, 12(2), 413; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020413 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2731
Abstract
The root system is formed by the primary root (PR), which forms lateral roots (LRs) and, in some cases, adventitious roots (ARs), which in turn may produce their own LRs. The formation of ARs is also essential for vegetative propagation in planta and [...] Read more.
The root system is formed by the primary root (PR), which forms lateral roots (LRs) and, in some cases, adventitious roots (ARs), which in turn may produce their own LRs. The formation of ARs is also essential for vegetative propagation in planta and in vitro and for breeding programs. Root formation and branching is coordinated by a complex developmental network, which maximizes the plant’s ability to cope with abiotic stress. Rooting is also a response caused in a cutting by wounding and disconnection from the donor plant. Brassinosteroids (BRs) are steroid molecules perceived at the cell surface. They act as plant-growth-regulators (PGRs) and modulate plant development to provide stress tolerance. BRs and auxins control the formation of LRs and ARs. The auxin/BR interaction involves other PGRs and compounds, such as nitric oxide (NO), strigolactones (SLs), and sphingolipids (SPLs). The roles of these interactions in root formation and plasticity are still to be discovered. SLs are carotenoid derived PGRs. SLs enhance/reduce LR/AR formation depending on species and culture conditions. These PGRs possibly crosstalk with BRs. SPLs form domains with sterols within cellular membranes. Both SLs and SPLs participate in plant development and stress responses. SPLs are determinant for auxin cell-trafficking, which is essential for the formation of LRs/ARs in planta and in in vitro systems. Although little is known about the transport, trafficking, and signaling of SPLs, they seem to interact with BRs and SLs in regulating root-system growth. Here, we review the literature on BRs as modulators of LR and AR formation, as well as their crosstalk with SLs and SPLs through NO signaling. Knowledge on the control of rooting by these non-classical PGRs can help in improving crop productivity and enhancing AR-response from cuttings. Full article
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19 pages, 2148 KiB  
Article
Phenotypic and Genotypic Diversity of Roots Response to Salt in Durum Wheat Seedlings
by Ieva Urbanavičiūtė, Luca Bonfiglioli and Mario A. Pagnotta
Plants 2023, 12(2), 412; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020412 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2043
Abstract
Soil salinity is a serious threat to food production now and in the near future. In this study, the root system of six durum wheat genotypes, including one highly salt-tolerant (J. Khetifa) used as a check genotype, was evaluated, by a high-throughput phenotyping [...] Read more.
Soil salinity is a serious threat to food production now and in the near future. In this study, the root system of six durum wheat genotypes, including one highly salt-tolerant (J. Khetifa) used as a check genotype, was evaluated, by a high-throughput phenotyping system, under control and salt conditions at the seedling stage. Genotyping was performed using 11 SSR markers closely linked with genome regions associated with root traits. Based on phenotypic cluster analysis, genotypes were grouped differently under control and salt conditions. Under control conditions, genotypes were clustered mainly due to a root angle, while under salt stress, genotypes were grouped according to their capacity to maintain higher roots length, volume, and surface area, as J. Khetifa, Sebatel, and Azeghar. SSR analysis identified a total of 42 alleles, with an average of about three alleles per marker. Moreover, quite a high number of Private alleles in total, 18 were obtained. The UPGMA phenogram of the Nei (1972) genetic distance clusters for 11 SSR markers and all phenotypic data under control conditions discriminate genotypes almost into the same groups. The study revealed as the combination of high-throughput systems for phenotyping with SSR markers for genotyping it’s a useful tool to provide important data for the selection of suitable parental lines for salt-tolerance breeding. Nevertheless, the narrow root angle, which is an important trait in drought tolerance, is not a good indicator of salt tolerance. Instated for salt tolerance is more important the amount of roots. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Responses of Wheat to Abiotic Stress)
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23 pages, 1918 KiB  
Review
Coordinating Diverse Functions of miRNA and lncRNA in Fleshy Fruit
by Reqing He, Yajun Tang and Dong Wang
Plants 2023, 12(2), 411; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020411 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2248
Abstract
Non-coding RNAs play vital roles in the diverse biological processes of plants, and they are becoming key topics in horticulture research. In particular, miRNAs and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are receiving increased attention in fruit crops. Recent studies in horticulture research provide both [...] Read more.
Non-coding RNAs play vital roles in the diverse biological processes of plants, and they are becoming key topics in horticulture research. In particular, miRNAs and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are receiving increased attention in fruit crops. Recent studies in horticulture research provide both genetic and molecular evidence that miRNAs and lncRNAs regulate biological function and stress responses during fruit development. Here, we summarize multiple regulatory modules of miRNAs and lncRNAs and their biological roles in fruit sets and stress responses, which would guide the development of molecular breeding techniques on horticultural crops. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Function of Non-coding RNA in Plants)
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15 pages, 2131 KiB  
Article
Novel Weighting Method for Evaluating Forest Soil Fertility Index: A Structural Equation Model
by Wenfei Zhao, Xiaoyu Cao, Jiping Li, Zhengchang Xie, Yaping Sun and Yuanying Peng
Plants 2023, 12(2), 410; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020410 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2434
Abstract
Understanding nutrient quantity and quality in forest soils is important for sustainable management of forest resources and maintaining forest ecosystem services. In this study, six soil nutrient indicators, including soil organic matter (SOM), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), available nitrogen (AN), available [...] Read more.
Understanding nutrient quantity and quality in forest soils is important for sustainable management of forest resources and maintaining forest ecosystem services. In this study, six soil nutrient indicators, including soil organic matter (SOM), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), available nitrogen (AN), available phosphorus (AP), and available potassium (AK) were measured in five different aged stands of Chinese fir forests in subtropical China. A structural equation model (SEM) was developed based on these soil nutrients indicators in order to better evaluate the soil fertility index (SFI) in these studied forests. The results show that soil nutrient contents changed with the soil depth in different age groups. The SOM decreased in a specific order: over mature > mature > near mature > middle > young stands. The TN content of the soil gradually decreased with increased soil depth throughout all age groups. The SEM indicated that the TN had the highest weight of 0.4154, while the TP had the lowest weight at 0.1991 for estimating the SFI. The weights of other indicators (AN, SOM, AP, and AK) ranged 0.2138–0.3855 in our study. The established SEM satisfied the fitness reference values and was able to accurately describe the forest soil nutrient status through the SFI. The overall SFI values were significantly higher in over mature stands than in young-aged stands and in topsoil than in deeper soil in all examined forests. Soil TN, AP, and AK were the most important nutrient indicators to the evaluation of the SFI in the study sites. The results confirmed that the SEM was suitable to estimate the weights of the SFI and better describe the soil nutrient status in forests. Our research provides an innovative approach to assess a soil nutrient status and soil fertility and provides a scientific basis for accurate implementation of soil nutrient assessment in forest ecosystems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrient Cycle and Hydrological Process of Plant Ecosystems)
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15 pages, 2868 KiB  
Article
Auxin Transporter OsPIN1b, a Novel Regulator of Leaf Inclination in Rice (Oryza sativa L.)
by Yanjun Zhang, Shaqila Han, Yuqing Lin, Jiyue Qiao, Naren Han, Yanyan Li, Yaning Feng, Dongming Li and Yanhua Qi
Plants 2023, 12(2), 409; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020409 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1837
Abstract
Leaf inclination is one of the most important components of the ideal architecture, which effects yield gain. Leaf inclination was shown that is mainly regulated by brassinosteroid (BR) and auxin signaling. Here, we reveal a novel regulator of leaf inclination, auxin transporter OsPIN1b. [...] Read more.
Leaf inclination is one of the most important components of the ideal architecture, which effects yield gain. Leaf inclination was shown that is mainly regulated by brassinosteroid (BR) and auxin signaling. Here, we reveal a novel regulator of leaf inclination, auxin transporter OsPIN1b. Two CRISPR-Cas9 homozygous mutants, ospin1b-1 and ospin1b-2, with smaller leaf inclination compared to the wild-type, Nipponbare (WT/NIP), while overexpression lines, OE-OsPIN1b-1 and OE-OsPIN1b-2 have opposite phenotype. Further cell biological observation showed that in the adaxial region, OE-OsPIN1b-1 has significant bulge compared to WT/NIP and ospin1b-1, indicating that the increase in the adaxial cell division results in the enlarging of the leaf inclination in OE-OsPIN1b-1. The OsPIN1b was localized on the plasma membrane, and the free IAA contents in the lamina joint of ospin1b mutants were significantly increased while they were decreased in OE-OsPIN1b lines, suggesting that OsPIN1b might action an auxin transporter such as AtPIN1 to alter IAA content and leaf inclination. Furthermore, the OsPIN1b expression was induced by exogenous epibrassinolide (24-eBL) and IAA, and ospin1b mutants are insensitive to BR or IAA treatment, indicating that the effecting leaf inclination is regulated by OsPIN1b. This study contributes a new gene resource for molecular design breeding of rice architecture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Role of Auxin in Plant Growth and Development)
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12 pages, 461 KiB  
Review
Omics Approaches in Uncovering Molecular Evolution and Physiology of Botanical Carnivory
by Anis Baharin, Tiew-Yik Ting and Hoe-Han Goh
Plants 2023, 12(2), 408; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020408 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2348
Abstract
Systems biology has been increasingly applied with multiple omics for a holistic comprehension of complex biological systems beyond the reductionist approach that focuses on individual molecules. Different high-throughput omics approaches, including genomics, transcriptomics, metagenomics, proteomics, and metabolomics have been implemented to study the [...] Read more.
Systems biology has been increasingly applied with multiple omics for a holistic comprehension of complex biological systems beyond the reductionist approach that focuses on individual molecules. Different high-throughput omics approaches, including genomics, transcriptomics, metagenomics, proteomics, and metabolomics have been implemented to study the molecular mechanisms of botanical carnivory. This covers almost all orders of carnivorous plants, namely Caryophyllales, Ericales, Lamiales, and Oxalidales, except Poales. Studies using single-omics or integrated multi-omics elucidate the compositional changes in nucleic acids, proteins, and metabolites. The omics studies on carnivorous plants have led to insights into the carnivory origin and evolution, such as prey capture and digestion as well as the physiological adaptations of trap organ formation. Our understandings of botanical carnivory are further enhanced by the discoveries of digestive enzymes and transporter proteins that aid in efficient nutrient sequestration alongside dynamic molecular responses to prey. Metagenomics studies revealed the mutualistic relationships between microbes and carnivorous plants. Lastly, in silico analysis accelerated the functional characterization of new molecules from carnivorous plants. These studies have provided invaluable molecular data for systems understanding of carnivorous plants. More studies are needed to cover the diverse species with convergent evolution of botanical carnivory. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Carnivorous and Parasitic Plants)
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14 pages, 915 KiB  
Article
Molecular Markers for Detecting Inflorescence Size of Brassica oleracea L. Crops and B. oleracea Complex Species (n = 9) Useful for Breeding of Broccoli (B. oleracea var. italica) and Cauliflower (B. oleracea var. botrytis)
by Simone Treccarichi, Hajer Ben Ammar, Marwen Amari, Riccardo Cali, Alessandro Tribulato and Ferdinando Branca
Plants 2023, 12(2), 407; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020407 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2394
Abstract
The gene flow from Brassica oleracea L. wild relatives to B. oleracea vegetable crops have occurred and continue to occur ordinarily in several Mediterranean countries, such as Sicily, representing an important hot spot of diversity for some of them, such as broccoli, cauliflower [...] Read more.
The gene flow from Brassica oleracea L. wild relatives to B. oleracea vegetable crops have occurred and continue to occur ordinarily in several Mediterranean countries, such as Sicily, representing an important hot spot of diversity for some of them, such as broccoli, cauliflower and kale. For detecting and for exploiting the forgotten alleles lost during the domestication processes of the B. oleracea crops, attention has been pointed to the individuation of specific markers for individuating genotypes characterized by hypertrophic inflorescence traits by the marker assisted selection (MAS) during the first plant growing phases after the crosses between broccoli (B. oleracea var. italica)/cauliflower (B. oleracea var. botrytis) with B. oleracea wild relatives (n = 9), reducing the cultivation and evaluation costs. The desired traits often found in several B. oleracea wild relatives are mainly addressed to improve the plant resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses and to increase the organoleptic, nutritive and nutraceutical traits of the products. One of the targeted traits for broccoli and cauliflower breeding is represented by the inflorescences size as is documented by the domestication processes of these two crops. Based on the previous results achieved, the numerical matrix, obtained utilizing five simple sequence repeats (SSRs), was analyzed to assess the relationship among the main inflorescence characteristics and the allelic variation of the SSRs loci analyzed (BoABI1, BoAP1, BoPLD1, BoTHL1 and PBCGSSRBo39), both for the Brassica oleracea and B. oleracea wild relatives (n = 9) accessions set. The main inflorescence morphometric characteristics, such as weight, height, diameter, shape, inflorescence curvature angle and its stem diameter, were registered before the flower anthesis. We analyzed the correlations among the allelic variation of the SSRs primers utilized and the inflorescence morphometric characteristics to individuate genomic regions stimulating the hypertrophy of the reproductive organ. The relationships found explain the diversity among B. oleracea crops and the B. oleracea complex species (n = 9) for the inflorescence size and structure. The individuated markers allow important time reduction during the breeding programs after crossing wild species for transferring useful biotic and abiotic resistances and organoleptic and nutraceutical traits to the B. oleracea crops by MAS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Plant Breeding, Genetics and Genomics)
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17 pages, 3060 KiB  
Article
Application of Phytosociological Information in the Evaluation of the Management of Protected Areas
by Jaime F. Pereña-Ortiz, Ángel Enrique Salvo-Tierra and Daniel Sánchez-Mata
Plants 2023, 12(2), 406; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020406 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1878
Abstract
The classification system of plant communities using phytosociological methods can be applied to their conservation in protected areas, as well as in establishing adequate protections and granting legal status to such areas. A new integrative index is developed to classify plant communities for [...] Read more.
The classification system of plant communities using phytosociological methods can be applied to their conservation in protected areas, as well as in establishing adequate protections and granting legal status to such areas. A new integrative index is developed to classify plant communities for the evaluation of the conservation status of protected areas, obtained from the product of three statistical indices of diversity: Syntaxonomic Distinctness, Rarefaction and Areas Prioritisation, which has been named DRA (acronym of the three indices used). The DRA is used to assess whether the status granted to Protected Areas matches the values provided by the plant communities within them and which were the basis for the identification and description of the Habitats of Community Interest (Habitats Directive—92/43/CEE). The proposed method was applied to the network of protected natural areas on the Andalusian coast, including 14 areas with different protection status, where, once the plant communities they contain were identified, the DRA index was applied to each of them and compared with the Legal Protection Index, i.e., the current protection regime; it becomes clear, objectively, that not all the statuses assigned, whether the IUCN criteria or those of the Andalusian government, correspond to the real levels of protection they should have on the basis of their plant communities. Full article
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17 pages, 2640 KiB  
Article
Nanopriming of Barley Seeds—A Shotgun Approach to Improve Germination under Salt Stress Conditions by Regulating of Reactive Oxygen Species
by Danuta Cembrowska-Lech and Kinga Rybak
Plants 2023, 12(2), 405; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020405 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1924
Abstract
Abiotic stresses are the most important environmental factors affecting seed germination, and negatively affect crop production worldwide. Water availability is essential for proper seed imbibition and germination. The mechanism by which seeds can germinate in areas with high soil salinity is, however, still [...] Read more.
Abiotic stresses are the most important environmental factors affecting seed germination, and negatively affect crop production worldwide. Water availability is essential for proper seed imbibition and germination. The mechanism by which seeds can germinate in areas with high soil salinity is, however, still unclear. The present study aims to investigate the protective roles of AgNPs in alleviating stress symptoms caused by salinity exposure in barley seeds. For this purpose, different treatment combinations of seed priming with PVP-AgNPs in salinity stress conditions were used. Salt stress (150 and 200 mM) was found to reduce seed germination by 100% when compared to the control. Under NaCl concentrations, seed priming with PVP-AgNPs (40 mg L−1) only for 2 h, reduced salinity effects. Salinity resulted in increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation compared to the control. However, increased antioxidants in the NPs treatments, such as SOD, CAT, GR, GPX (expression at both genes, such as HvSOD, HvCAT, HvGR or HvGPX, and protein levels) and glutathione content, scavenged these ROS. Considering all of the parameters under study, priming alleviated salt stress. To summarize, seed priming with AgNPs has the potential to alleviate salinity stress via reduced ROS generation and activation of the antioxidant enzymatic system during germination. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Use of Nanomaterials in Agriculture 2.0)
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18 pages, 2718 KiB  
Article
Croatian Native Grapevine Varieties’ VOCs Responses upon Plasmopara viticola Inoculation
by Petra Štambuk, Iva Šikuten, Darko Preiner, Edi Maletić, Jasminka Karoglan Kontić and Ivana Tomaz
Plants 2023, 12(2), 404; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020404 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1436
Abstract
The Plasmopara viticola pathogen causes one of the most severe grapevine diseases, namely downy mildew. The response to P. viticola involves both visible symptoms and intricate metabolomic alterations, particularly in relation to volatile organic compounds, and depends on the degree of resistance of [...] Read more.
The Plasmopara viticola pathogen causes one of the most severe grapevine diseases, namely downy mildew. The response to P. viticola involves both visible symptoms and intricate metabolomic alterations, particularly in relation to volatile organic compounds, and depends on the degree of resistance of a particular variety. There are numerous native grapevine varieties in Croatia, and they vary in susceptibility to this oomycete. As previously reported, in vitro leaf disc bioassay and polyphenolic compound analysis are complementary methods that can be used to separate native varieties into various resistance classes. This research used the Solid Phase Microextraction-Arrow Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry method to identify the early alterations in the VOCs in the leaves after P. viticola inoculation. Based on the absolute peak area of sesquiterpenes, some discrepancies between the sampling terms were noticed. The presence of certain chemical compounds such as humulene, ylangene, and α-farnesene helped distinguish the non-inoculated and inoculated samples. Although specific VOC responses to P. viticola infection of native varieties from various resistance classes could not be identified, the response of less susceptible native varieties and resistant controls was associated with an increase in the absolute peak area of several compounds, including geranylacetone, ß-ocimene, and (E)-2-hexen-1-ol. Full article
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28 pages, 7900 KiB  
Article
Isolation and Characterization of SPOTTED LEAF42 Encoding a Porphobilinogen Deaminase in Rice
by Lin Liu, Yunpeng Wang, Yunlu Tian, Shuang Song, Zewan Wu, Xin Ding, Hai Zheng, Yunshuai Huang, Shijia Liu, Xiaoou Dong, Jianmin Wan and Linglong Liu
Plants 2023, 12(2), 403; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020403 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1719
Abstract
The formation and development of chloroplasts play a vital role in the breeding of high-yield rice (Oryza sativa L.). Porphobilinogen deaminases (PBGDs) act in the early stage of chlorophyll and heme biosynthesis. However, the role of PBGDs in chloroplast development and chlorophyll [...] Read more.
The formation and development of chloroplasts play a vital role in the breeding of high-yield rice (Oryza sativa L.). Porphobilinogen deaminases (PBGDs) act in the early stage of chlorophyll and heme biosynthesis. However, the role of PBGDs in chloroplast development and chlorophyll production remains elusive in rice. Here, we identified the spotted leaf 42 (spl42) mutant, which exhibited a reddish-brown spotted leaf phenotype. The mutant showed a significantly lower chlorophyll content, abnormal thylakoid morphology, and elevated activities of reactive oxygen species (ROS)-scavenging enzymes. Consistently, multiple genes related to chloroplast development and chlorophyll biosynthesis were significantly down-regulated, whereas many genes involved in leaf senescence, ROS production, and defense responses were upregulated in the spl42 mutant. Map-based cloning revealed that SPL42 encodes a PBGD. A C-to-T base substitution occurred in spl42, resulting in an amino acid change and significantly reduced PBGD enzyme activity. SPL42 targets to the chloroplast and interacts with the multiple organelle RNA editing factors (MORFs) OsMORF8-1 and OsMORF8-2 to affect RNA editing. The identification and characterization of spl42 helps in elucidating the molecular mechanisms associated with chlorophyll synthesis and RNA editing in rice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Breeding and Germplasm Improvement of Rice)
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9 pages, 2234 KiB  
Article
Non-Volatile Terpenoids and Lipophilic Flavonoids from Achillea erba-rotta Subsp. moschata (Wulfen) I. Richardson
by Stefano Salamone, Nicola Aiello, Pietro Fusani, Antonella Rosa, Mariella Nieddu, Giovanni Appendino and Federica Pollastro
Plants 2023, 12(2), 402; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020402 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1515
Abstract
Musk yarrow (Achillea erba-rotta subsp. moschata (Wulfen) I. Richardson) is endemic to the Central Alps, and is used to flavour alcoholic beverages. Despite its popularity as aromatizing agent and its alleged beneficial effects on digestion, the phytochemical profile of the plant is [...] Read more.
Musk yarrow (Achillea erba-rotta subsp. moschata (Wulfen) I. Richardson) is endemic to the Central Alps, and is used to flavour alcoholic beverages. Despite its popularity as aromatizing agent and its alleged beneficial effects on digestion, the phytochemical profile of the plant is still largely unknown and undiscovered. As a consequence, its authentication in aromatized products is impossible beyond sensory analysis allowing forgery. To address these issues, we phytochemically characterized a sample of musk yarrow from the Italian Eastern Alps, identifying, in addition to widespread phytochemicals (taraxasterol, apigenin), the guaianolides 3, 8, 9; the seco-caryophyllane 6; and the polymethoxylated lipophilic flavonoids 1, 4, and 5. The flavonoid xanthomicrol 1, a major constituent of the plant, was cytotoxic to HeLa cells, but only modestly affected primary 3T3 fibroblasts. On account of their stability, detectability by UV absorption, and concentration, the oxygenated flavonoids qualify as markers to validate the supply chain of the plant growers to consumers. Full article
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19 pages, 2473 KiB  
Article
Protein Changes in Shade and Sun Haberlea rhodopensis Leaves during Dehydration at Optimal and Low Temperatures
by Gergana Mihailova, Ádám Solti, Éva Sárvári, Éva Hunyadi-Gulyás and Katya Georgieva
Plants 2023, 12(2), 401; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020401 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2069
Abstract
Haberlea rhodopensis is a unique resurrection plant of high phenotypic plasticity, colonizing both shady habitats and sun-exposed rock clefts. H. rhodopensis also survives freezing winter temperatures in temperate climates. Although survival in conditions of desiccation and survival in conditions of frost share high [...] Read more.
Haberlea rhodopensis is a unique resurrection plant of high phenotypic plasticity, colonizing both shady habitats and sun-exposed rock clefts. H. rhodopensis also survives freezing winter temperatures in temperate climates. Although survival in conditions of desiccation and survival in conditions of frost share high morphological and physiological similarities, proteomic changes lying behind these mechanisms are hardly studied. Thus, we aimed to reveal ecotype-level and temperature-dependent variations in the protective mechanisms by applying both targeted and untargeted proteomic approaches. Drought-induced desiccation enhanced superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity, but FeSOD and Cu/ZnSOD-III were significantly better triggered in sun plants. Desiccation resulted in the accumulation of enzymes involved in carbohydrate/phenylpropanoid metabolism (enolase, triosephosphate isomerase, UDP-D-apiose/UDP-D-xylose synthase 2, 81E8-like cytochrome P450 monooxygenase) and protective proteins such as vicinal oxygen chelate metalloenzyme superfamily and early light-induced proteins, dehydrins, and small heat shock proteins, the latter two typically being found in the latest phases of dehydration and being more pronounced in sun plants. Although low temperature and drought stress-induced desiccation trigger similar responses, the natural variation of these responses in shade and sun plants calls for attention to the pre-conditioning/priming effects that have high importance both in the desiccation responses and successful stress recovery. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Insights into Plant Resistance to Stress)
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27 pages, 948 KiB  
Review
Plant Beneficial Bacteria and Their Potential Applications in Vertical Farming Systems
by Peerapol Chiaranunt and James F. White
Plants 2023, 12(2), 400; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020400 - 15 Jan 2023
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 11434
Abstract
In this literature review, we discuss the various functions of beneficial plant bacteria in improving plant nutrition, the defense against biotic and abiotic stress, and hormonal regulation. We also review the recent research on rhizophagy, a nutrient scavenging mechanism in which bacteria enter [...] Read more.
In this literature review, we discuss the various functions of beneficial plant bacteria in improving plant nutrition, the defense against biotic and abiotic stress, and hormonal regulation. We also review the recent research on rhizophagy, a nutrient scavenging mechanism in which bacteria enter and exit root cells on a cyclical basis. These concepts are covered in the contexts of soil agriculture and controlled environment agriculture, and they are also used in vertical farming systems. Vertical farming—its advantages and disadvantages over soil agriculture, and the various climatic factors in controlled environment agriculture—is also discussed in relation to plant–bacterial relationships. The different factors under grower control, such as choice of substrate, oxygenation rates, temperature, light, and CO2 supplementation, may influence plant–bacterial interactions in unintended ways. Understanding the specific effects of these environmental factors may inform the best cultural practices and further elucidate the mechanisms by which beneficial bacteria promote plant growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Genetics, Genomics and Biotechnology)
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18 pages, 4544 KiB  
Article
Systematics and Phylogenetic Placement of Panicum L. Species within the Melinidinae Based on Morphological, Anatomical, and Molecular Data (Poaceae, Panicoideae, Paniceae)
by Carolina Delfini, Diego L. Salariato, Sandra S. Aliscioni and Fernando O. Zuloaga
Plants 2023, 12(2), 399; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020399 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1990
Abstract
Generic boundaries of the African species Panicum deustum Thunb., Panicum trichocladum Hack. ex K. Schum., and Panicum vollesenii Renvoize are analyzed and compared with related genera of the tribe Paniceae and the subtribe Melinidinae. Based on morphological (vegetative and reproductive characters including habit, [...] Read more.
Generic boundaries of the African species Panicum deustum Thunb., Panicum trichocladum Hack. ex K. Schum., and Panicum vollesenii Renvoize are analyzed and compared with related genera of the tribe Paniceae and the subtribe Melinidinae. Based on morphological (vegetative and reproductive characters including habit, ligules, inflorescence, spikelets, and ornamentation of the upper anthecium), anatomical (transverse section of leaves), and molecular data (three chloroplast markers), a new genus is proposed for P. deustum, while P. trichocladum and P. vollesenii are transferred to the genus Megathyrsus (Pilg.) B.K. Simon & S.W.L. Jacobs. The phylogenetic position of both taxa within the Melinidinae and their morphological affinities with other genera of the subtribe are also discussed. Additional studies on the Melinidinae will clarify the systematic position of the genera that are still in a doubtful position within the subtribe, such as Eriochloa and Urochloa. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Plant Systematics and Taxonomy)
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14 pages, 2761 KiB  
Article
Genome-Wide Analysis of Lipoxygenase (LOX) Genes in Angiosperms
by Paula Oliveira Camargo, Natália Fermino Calzado, Ilara Gabriela Frasson Budzinski and Douglas Silva Domingues
Plants 2023, 12(2), 398; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020398 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2005
Abstract
Lipoxygenases (LOXs) are enzymes that catalyze the addition of an oxygen molecule to unsaturated fatty acids, thus forming hydroperoxides. In plants, these enzymes are encoded by a multigene family found in several organs with varying activity patterns, by which they are classified as [...] Read more.
Lipoxygenases (LOXs) are enzymes that catalyze the addition of an oxygen molecule to unsaturated fatty acids, thus forming hydroperoxides. In plants, these enzymes are encoded by a multigene family found in several organs with varying activity patterns, by which they are classified as LOX9 or LOX13. They are involved in several physiological functions, such as growth, fruit development, and plant defense. Despite several studies on genes of the LOX family in plants, most studies are restricted to a single species or a few closely related species. This study aimed to analyze the diversity, evolution, and expression of LOX genes in angiosperm species. We identified 247 LOX genes among 23 species of angiosperms and basal plants. Phylogenetic analyses identified clades supporting LOX13 and two main clades for LOX9: LOX9_A and LOX9_B. Eudicot species such as Tarenaya hassleriana, Capsella rubella, and Arabidopsis thaliana did not present LOX9_B genes; however, LOX9_B was present in all monocots used in this study. We identified that there were potential new subcellular localization patterns and conserved residues of oxidation for LOX9 and LOX13 yet unexplored. In summary, our study provides a basis for the further functional and evolutionary study of lipoxygenases in angiosperms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolutionary Genomics III)
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15 pages, 1075 KiB  
Article
Durum Wheat Bread with a Potentially High Health Value through the Addition of Durum Wheat Thin Bran or Barley Flour
by Donatella Bianca Maria Ficco, Michele Canale, Virgilio Giannone, Maria Concetta Strano, Maria Allegra, Silvia Zingale and Alfio Spina
Plants 2023, 12(2), 397; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020397 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1799
Abstract
The enrichment of semolina bread with prebiotic ingredients such as β-glucans may exert health-promoting effects. This work presents the results of a general recipe development aimed at improving the nutritional value of bakery products. In this study, increasing amounts (0%, 2%, 5%, 7%, [...] Read more.
The enrichment of semolina bread with prebiotic ingredients such as β-glucans may exert health-promoting effects. This work presents the results of a general recipe development aimed at improving the nutritional value of bakery products. In this study, increasing amounts (0%, 2%, 5%, 7%, and 10%) of thin bran or barley flour were added into re-milled durum wheat semolina to prepare breads. The technological quality of doughs and breads was investigated. In general, the Farinograph water absorption of flour and dough stability increased with increasing inclusion levels of barley flour or thin bran (up to 73.23% and 18.75 min, respectively), contrarily to the increase of dough development time only in barley inclusion (4.55 min). At the same time, the softening index decreased for almost all of these, except for 2% of thin bran or barley flour inclusion. At Mixograph, mixing time increased (up to 5.13 min) whilst the peak height decreased. The specific volume and hardness of loaf differently decreased for almost all thesis (ranges 12.6–24.0% and 39.4–45.5%, respectively). The other quality parameters remained unchanged compared with semolina bread. After baking, β-glucan levels increased differently at all the inclusion levels (2.35-fold, on average). The breadcrumb color was deep brown, while the crust became lighter in color. The breads contain β-glucans even at low percentages of barley/bran inclusions while maintaining their technological performance. In conclusion, the results show an interesting potential of barley flour or thin bran as ingredients in breadmaking to increase the β-glucans daily intake, but further investigations are needed to achieve improved quality features. Full article
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23 pages, 4049 KiB  
Article
Valorization of Bioactive Compounds from By-Products of Matricaria recutita White Ray Florets
by Ilva Nakurte, Marta Berga, Laura Pastare, Liene Kienkas, Maris Senkovs, Martins Boroduskis and Anna Ramata-Stunda
Plants 2023, 12(2), 396; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020396 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1879
Abstract
In this research, we have reported the valorization possibilities of Matricaria recutita white ray florets using supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) with CO2. Experiments were conducted at temperatures of 35–55 °C and separation pressures of 5–9 MPa to evaluate their impact on [...] Read more.
In this research, we have reported the valorization possibilities of Matricaria recutita white ray florets using supercritical fluid extraction (SFE) with CO2. Experiments were conducted at temperatures of 35–55 °C and separation pressures of 5–9 MPa to evaluate their impact on the chemical composition and biological activity of the extracts. The total obtained extraction yields varied from 9.76 to 18.21 g 100 g−1 DW input. The greatest extraction yield obtained was at 9 MPa separation pressure and 55 °C in the separation tank. In all obtained extracts, the contents of total phenols, flavonoids, tannins, and sugars were determined. The influence of the supercritical CO2 extraction conditions on the extract antioxidant capacity was evaluated using the quenching activity of 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH). The chemical composition of the extracts was identified using both gas and liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry methods, whereas analyses of major and minor elements as well as heavy metals by microwave plasma atomic emission spectrometer were provided. Moreover, extracts were compared with respect to their antimicrobial activity, as well as the cytotoxicity and phototoxicity of the extracts. The results revealed a considerable diversity in the phytochemical classes among all extracts investigated in the present study and showed that the Matricaria recutita white ray floret by-product possesses cytotoxic and proliferation-reducing activity in immortalized cell lines, as well as antimicrobial activity. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first paper presenting such comprehensive data on the chemical profile, antioxidant properties, and biological properties of SFE derived from Matricaria recutita white ray florets. For the first time, these effects have been studied in processing by-products, and the results generated in this study provide valuable preconditions for further studies in specific test systems to fully elucidate the mechanisms of action and potential applications, such as potential use in cosmetic formulations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Uses & Efficient Valorisation of Plant Biomass in Biorefinery Context)
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21 pages, 6320 KiB  
Article
Developmental Programmed Cell Death Involved in Ontogenesis of Dictamnus dasycarpus Capitate Glandular Hairs
by Yafu Zhou, Gen Li, Guijun Han, Lulu Xun, Shaoli Mao, Luyao Yang and Yanwen Wang
Plants 2023, 12(2), 395; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020395 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1576
Abstract
Plant glandular trichomes have received much attention due to their commercial and biological value. Recent studies have focused on the development of various glands in plants, suggesting that programmed cell death (PCD) may play an important role during the development of plant secretory [...] Read more.
Plant glandular trichomes have received much attention due to their commercial and biological value. Recent studies have focused on the development of various glands in plants, suggesting that programmed cell death (PCD) may play an important role during the development of plant secretory structures. However, the development processes and cytological characteristics in different types of plant secretory structures differed significantly. This study aims to provide new data on the developmental PCD of the capitate glandular hairs in Dictamnus dasycarpus. Light, scanning, immunofluorescence labeling, and transmission electron microscopy were used to determine the different developmental processes of the capitate glandular hairs from a cytological perspective. Morphologically, the capitate glandular hair originates from one initial epidermal cell and differentiates into a multicellular trichome characterized by two basal cells, two lines of stalk cells, and a multicellular head. It is also histochemically detected by essential oils. TUNEL-positive reactions identified nuclei with diffused fluorescence or an irregular figure by DAPI, and Evans blue staining showed that the head and stalk cells lost their viability. Ultrastructural evidence revealed the developmental process by two possible modes of PCD. Non-autolytic PCD was characterized by buckling cell walls and degenerated nuclei, mitochondria, plastids, multivesicular body (MVB), and end-expanded endoplasmic reticulum in the condensed cytoplasm, which were mainly observed in the head cells. The MVB was detected in the degraded vacuole, a degraded nucleus with condensed chromatin and diffused membrane, and eventual loss of the vacuole membrane integrity exhibited typical evidence of vacuole-mediated autolytic PCD in the stalk cells. Furthermore, protoplasm degeneration coupled with dark oil droplets and numerous micro-dark osmiophilic substances was observed during late stages. The secretion mode of essential oils is also described in this paper. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Morphology and Phylogenetic Evolution)
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10 pages, 2336 KiB  
Article
Inheritance of Fruit Red-Flesh Patterns in Peach
by Nathalia Zaracho, Gemma Reig, Naveen Kalluri, Pere Arús and Iban Eduardo
Plants 2023, 12(2), 394; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020394 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2788
Abstract
Fruit color is an important trait in peach from the point of view of consumer preference, nutritional content, and diversification of fruit typologies. Several genes and phenotypes have been described for peach flesh and skin color, and although peach color knowledge has increased [...] Read more.
Fruit color is an important trait in peach from the point of view of consumer preference, nutritional content, and diversification of fruit typologies. Several genes and phenotypes have been described for peach flesh and skin color, and although peach color knowledge has increased in the last few years, some fruit color patterns observed in peach breeding programs have not been carefully described. In this work, we first describe some peach mesocarp color patterns that have not yet been described in a collection of commercial peach cultivars, and we also study the genetic inheritance of the red dots present in the flesh (RDF) and red color around the stone (CAS) in several intra- and interspecific segregating populations for both traits. For RDF, we identified a QTL at the beginning of G5 in two intraspecific populations, and for CAS we identified a major QTL in G4 in both an intraspecific and an interspecific population between almond and peach. Finally, we discuss the interaction between these QTLs and some other genes previously identified in peach, such as dominant blood flesh (DBF), color around the stone (Cs), subacid (D) and the maturity date (MD), and the implications for peach breeding. The results obtained here will help peach germplasm curators and breeders to better characterize their plant materials and to develop an integrated system of molecular markers to select these traits. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fruit Quality and Ripening in Prunus)
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16 pages, 2800 KiB  
Article
In Vitro α-Amylase and α-Glucosidase Inhibitory Activity of Green Seaweed Halimeda tuna Extract from the Coast of Lhok Bubon, Aceh
by Mohamad Gazali, Odi Jolanda, Amir Husni, Nurjanah, Fadzilah Adibah Abd Majid, Zuriat and Rina Syafitri
Plants 2023, 12(2), 393; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020393 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2822
Abstract
Seaweed belongs to marine biota and contains nutrients and secondary metabolites beneficial for health. This study aimed to determine the antidiabetic activity of extracts and fractions of green seaweed Halimeda tuna. The H. tuna sample was extracted with the maceration method using [...] Read more.
Seaweed belongs to marine biota and contains nutrients and secondary metabolites beneficial for health. This study aimed to determine the antidiabetic activity of extracts and fractions of green seaweed Halimeda tuna. The H. tuna sample was extracted with the maceration method using methanol and then partitioned using ethyl acetate and water to obtain ethyl acetate and water fractions. The methanol extract, ethyl acetate fraction, and water fraction of H. tuna were tested for their inhibitory activity against α-amilase and α-glucosidase. The methanol extract and the fractions with the highest inhibitory activity were phytochemically tested and analyzed using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The results showed that the ethyl acetate fraction (IC50 = 0.88 ± 0.20 mg/mL) inhibited α-amylase relatively similar to acarbose (IC50 = 0.76 ± 0.04 mg/mL). The methanol extract (IC50 = 0.05 ± 0.01 mg/mL) and the ethyl acetate fraction (IC50 = 0.01 ± 0.00 mg/mL) demonstrated stronger inhibitory activity against α-glucosidase than acarbose (IC50 = 0.27 ± 0.13 mg/mL). Phytochemical testing showed that the methanol extract and the ethyl acetate fraction contained secondary metabolites: alkaloids, flavonoids, steroids, and phenol hydroquinone. The compounds in methanol extract predicted to have inhibitory activity against α-amylase and α-glucosidase were Docosanol, Neophytadiene, Stigmasta-7,22-dien-3-ol,acetate,(3.beta.,5.alpha.,22E), Octadecanoic acid,2-oxo-,methyl ester, and phytol, while those in the ethyl acetate fraction were n-Nonadecane, Phytol, Butyl ester, 14-.Beta.-H-pregna, Octadecenoic acid, and Oleic acid. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Biological Activity of Plant Extracts)
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13 pages, 1218 KiB  
Article
Soybean Seed Sugars: A Role in the Mechanism of Resistance to Charcoal Rot and Potential Use as Biomarkers in Selection
by Nacer Bellaloui, Alemu Mengistu, James R. Smith, Hamed K. Abbas, Cesare Accinelli and W. Thomas Shier
Plants 2023, 12(2), 392; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020392 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1690
Abstract
Charcoal rot, caused by Macrophomina phaseolina, is a major soybean disease resulting in significant yield loss and poor seed quality. Currently, no resistant soybean cultivar is available in the market and resistance mechanisms to charcoal rot are unknown, although the disease is [...] Read more.
Charcoal rot, caused by Macrophomina phaseolina, is a major soybean disease resulting in significant yield loss and poor seed quality. Currently, no resistant soybean cultivar is available in the market and resistance mechanisms to charcoal rot are unknown, although the disease is believed to infect plants from infected soil through the roots by unknown toxin-mediated mechanisms. The objective of this research was to investigate the association between seed sugars (sucrose, raffinose, stachyose, glucose, and fructose) and their role as biomarkers in the soybean defense mechanism in the moderately resistant (MR) and susceptible (S) genotypes to charcoal rot. Seven MR and six S genotypes were grown under irrigated (IR) and non-irrigated (NIR) conditions. A two-year field experiment was conducted in 2012 and 2013 at Jackson, TN, USA. The main findings in this research were that MR genotypes generally had the ability to maintain higher seed levels of sucrose, glucose, and fructose than did S genotypes. Conversely, susceptible genotypes showed a higher level of stachyose and lower levels of sucrose, glucose, and fructose. This was observed in 6 out of 7 MR genotypes and in 4 out of 6 S genotypes in 2012; and in 5 out of 7 MR genotypes and in 5 out of 6 S genotypes in 2013. The response of S genotypes with higher levels of stachyose and lower sucrose, glucose, and fructose, compared with those of MR genotypes, may indicate the possible role of these sugars in a defense mechanism against charcoal rot. It also indicates that nutrient pathways in MR genotypes allowed for a higher influx of nutritious sugars (sucrose, glucose, and fructose) than did S genotypes, suggesting these sugars as potential biomarkers for selecting MR soybean plants after harvest. This research provides new knowledge on seed sugars and helps in understanding the impact of charcoal rot on seed sugars in moderately resistant and susceptible genotypes. Full article
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14 pages, 1379 KiB  
Article
Spore-Trapping Device: An Efficient Tool to Manage Fungal Diseases in Winter Wheat Crops
by Oksana Kremneva, Roman Danilov, Ksenia Gasiyan and Artem Ponomarev
Plants 2023, 12(2), 391; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020391 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1744
Abstract
Leaf airborne diseases cause major shortfalls in agricultural crops. The introduction of technical means can significantly improve early-warning systems for plant diseases as well as provide timely and accurate forecasts. In this paper, we aim to evaluate the possibilities of detecting a phytopathogenic [...] Read more.
Leaf airborne diseases cause major shortfalls in agricultural crops. The introduction of technical means can significantly improve early-warning systems for plant diseases as well as provide timely and accurate forecasts. In this paper, we aim to evaluate the possibilities of detecting a phytopathogenic infection using a spore-catching device developed at the Federal Research Center of Biological Plant Protection (FRCBPP) on winter wheat varieties of different levels of susceptibility to major economically important leaf diseases, taking into account climatic conditions. The device captures spores in the surface layer of air among crop plants. We conducted research in the experimental fields of FRCBPP in 2019–2021. The objects of the study were four cultivars of winter wheat. They were selected according to the degree of resistance to various leaf diseases. We studied the progress of wheat diseases according to generally accepted international scales the onset of the first manifestations to their maximum development. We studied the aerogenic infection in wheat crops using the FRCBPP developed portable device for determining the infestation of plants. Sampling was carried out in the same period as the visual assessment. The samples were taken in the crops of each variety at five points. The sampling time was one minute. As a result of research on experimental crops of four varieties of winter wheat, we observed the development of such diseases as powdery mildew (Erysiphe graminis), yellow spot (Pyrenophora tritici-repentis), septoria leaf spot (Septoria tritici), yellow (Puccinia striiformis) and brown rust (Puccinia triticina). In a laboratory study of samples under a light microscope, all of the listed pathogens were found except for septoria leaf spot. Two-way analysis of variance confirmed the statistically significant separate and cumulative influence of the cultivar and year factor on winter wheat diseases. A generalized correlation analysis for three growing seasons (2019–2021) showed that an average statistically significant correlation coefficient (0.5–0.6) remains for the total groups for powdery mildew, yellow and brown rust. This indicator for the causative agent of yellow spot was equal to 0.4 with a high level of statistical significance. Thus, we conclude that by using a spore-catching device, it is possible to identify spores of economically significant pathogens in winter wheat crops and predict the further development of pathogens, taking into account the cultivar and annual climate factors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovative Technologies & Approaches in Agro-Ecosystems)
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18 pages, 1559 KiB  
Article
Chemophenetic Approach to Selected Senecioneae Species, Combining Morphometric and UHPLC-HRMS Analyses
by Yulian Voynikov, Vessela Balabanova, Reneta Gevrenova and Dimitrina Zheleva-Dimitrova
Plants 2023, 12(2), 390; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020390 - 14 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1123
Abstract
Herein, a chemophenetic significance, based on the phenolic metabolite profiling of three Senecio (S. hercynicus, S. ovatus, and S. rupestris) and two Jacobaea species (J. pancicii and J. maritima), coupled to morphometric data, is presented. A set of [...] Read more.
Herein, a chemophenetic significance, based on the phenolic metabolite profiling of three Senecio (S. hercynicus, S. ovatus, and S. rupestris) and two Jacobaea species (J. pancicii and J. maritima), coupled to morphometric data, is presented. A set of twelve morphometric characters were recorded from each plant species and used as predictor variables in a linear discriminant analysis (LDA) model. From a total 75 observations (15 from each of the five species), the model correctly assumed their species’ membership, except for 2 observations. Among the studied species, S. hercynicus and S. ovatus presented the greatest morphological similarity. A phytochemical profiling of phenolic specialized metabolites by UHPLC-Orbitrap-MS revealed 46 hydroxybenzoic, hydroxycinnamic, and acylquinic acids and their derivatives, 1 coumarin and 21 flavonoids. Hierarchical and PCA clustering applied to the phytochemical data corroborated the similarity of S. hercynicus and S. ovatus, observed in the morphometric analysis. This study contributes to the phylogenetic relationships between the tribe Senecioneae taxa and highlights the chemophenetic similarity/dissimilarity of the studied species belonging to Senecio and Jacobaea genera. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Spectra Analysis and Plants Research 2.0)
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15 pages, 2865 KiB  
Article
Small Heat Shock Protein (sHSP) Gene Family from Sweet Pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) Fruits: Involvement in Ripening and Modulation by Nitric Oxide (NO)
by Salvador González-Gordo, José M. Palma and Francisco J. Corpas
Plants 2023, 12(2), 389; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020389 - 13 Jan 2023
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2459
Abstract
Small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) are usually upregulated in plants under diverse environmental stresses. These proteins have been suggested to function as molecular chaperones to safeguard other proteins from stress-induced damage. The ripening of pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) fruit involves important phenotypic, [...] Read more.
Small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) are usually upregulated in plants under diverse environmental stresses. These proteins have been suggested to function as molecular chaperones to safeguard other proteins from stress-induced damage. The ripening of pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) fruit involves important phenotypic, physiological, and biochemical changes, which have associated endogenous physiological nitro-oxidative stress, but they can also be significantly affected by environmental conditions, such as temperature. Based on the available pepper genome, a total of 41 sHSP genes were identified in this work, and their distributions in the 12 pepper chromosomes were determined. Among these genes, only 19 sHSP genes were found in the transcriptome (RNA-Seq) of sweet pepper fruits reported previously. This study aims to analyze how these 19 sHSP genes present in the transcriptome of sweet pepper fruits are modulated during ripening and after treatment of fruits with nitric oxide (NO) gas. The time-course expression analysis of these genes during fruit ripening showed that 6 genes were upregulated; another 7 genes were downregulated, whereas 6 genes were not significantly affected. Furthermore, NO treatment triggered the upregulation of 7 sHSP genes and the downregulation of 3 sHSP genes, whereas 9 genes were unchanged. These data indicate the diversification of sHSP genes in pepper plants and, considering that sHSPs are important in stress tolerance, the observed changes in sHSP expression support that pepper fruit ripening has an associated process of physiological nitro-oxidative stress, such as it was previously proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trends and Prospects of Genetic and Molecular Research in Plant)
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23 pages, 18025 KiB  
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Characterization of Some Cichorium Taxa Grown under Mediterranean Climate Using Morphological Traits and Molecular Markers
by Ahmed M. El-Taher, Hala A. Elzilal, Hany S. Abd El-Raouf, Emad Mady, Khalid S. Alshallash, Rasha M. Alnefaie, Ehab M. B. Mahdy, Osama G. Ragab, Elhassan A. Emam, Ibrahim A. Alaraidh, Timothy O. Randhir and Mohamed F. M. Ibrahim
Plants 2023, 12(2), 388; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12020388 - 13 Jan 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2087
Abstract
The verification of taxonomic identities is of the highest significance in the field of biological study and categorization. Morpho-molecular characterization can clarify uncertainties in distinguishing between taxonomic groups. In this study, we characterized five local taxa of the genus Cichorium using morphological and [...] Read more.
The verification of taxonomic identities is of the highest significance in the field of biological study and categorization. Morpho-molecular characterization can clarify uncertainties in distinguishing between taxonomic groups. In this study, we characterized five local taxa of the genus Cichorium using morphological and molecular markers for taxonomic authentication and probably future genetic improvement. The five Cichorium taxa grown under the Mediterranean climate using morphological traits and molecular markers showed variations. The examined taxa showed a widespread range of variations in leaf characteristics, i.e., shape, type, texture, margin, and apex and cypsela characteristics i.e., shape, color, and surface pattern. The phylogenetic tree categorized the Cichorium intybus var. intybus and C. intybus var. foliosum in a single group, whereas C. endivia var. endivia was grouped separately. However, C. endivia var. crispum and C. endivia subsp. pumilum were classified as a cluster. The recorded variance between classes using the molecular markers SCoT, ISSR, and RAPD was documented at 34.43%, 36.62%, and 40.34%, respectively. Authentication using molecular tools proved the usefulness of a dichotomous indented key, as revealed by morphological identification. The integrated methodology using morphological and molecular assessment could support improved verification and authentication of the various taxa of chicory. It seems likely that the Egyptian chicory belongs to C. endivia subsp. pumilum. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mediterranean Plants II)
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