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Biology, Volume 13, Issue 6 (June 2024) – 86 articles

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15 pages, 2419 KiB  
Article
The Influence of Environmental Factors on Site Selection Augment Breeding Success in Honey Bees: An Insight of Honey Bee Genetic Resource Conservation
by Peter Njukang Akongte, Bo-Sun Park, Minwoong Son, Chang-hoon Lee, Daegeun Oh, Yong-Soo Choi and Dongwon Kim
Biology 2024, 13(6), 444; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060444 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Abstract
Honey bee reproductive behavior involves a complicated mating system that embodies a number of factors, including environmental and human-induced factors. Controlled breeding in isolated mating stations is a prerequisite to maintain the genetic resources of honey bees through natural mating. The concept of [...] Read more.
Honey bee reproductive behavior involves a complicated mating system that embodies a number of factors, including environmental and human-induced factors. Controlled breeding in isolated mating stations is a prerequisite to maintain the genetic resources of honey bees through natural mating. The concept of controlled mating is a challenge in most beekeeping operations due to its low mating success rate. Therefore, a detailed investigation into the suitability of isolated mating stations is of interest. Thus, we bred two subspecies of honey bees (Apis cerana koreana and Apis mellifera L.) in isolated mating stations (island) from 2021 to 2023 and in an open breeding station in 2023. Our results demonstrate that the highest percentage of the mating success rate in isolated mating stations was recorded in the Wido Island, which had the highest percentage of bare land, coniferous forests, deciduous forests, fields, and mixed forests. The mating success rate was higher in the summer and spring for A. cerana and A. mellifera, respectively. The mating success rate was higher in open mating compared to controlled mating (Island) and did not vary between pure-breeding and cross-breeding lines. Our findings suggested that mating stations with mixed forest and fields are potential sites for the successful breeding of honey bees. Full article
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18 pages, 4144 KiB  
Article
Auditory Sensory Gating: Effects of Noise
by Fan-Yin Cheng, Julia Campbell and Chang Liu
Biology 2024, 13(6), 443; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060443 (registering DOI) - 18 Jun 2024
Abstract
Cortical auditory evoked potentials (CAEPs) indicate that noise degrades auditory neural encoding, causing decreased peak amplitude and increased peak latency. Different types of noise affect CAEP responses, with greater informational masking causing additional degradation. In noisy conditions, attention can improve target signals’ neural [...] Read more.
Cortical auditory evoked potentials (CAEPs) indicate that noise degrades auditory neural encoding, causing decreased peak amplitude and increased peak latency. Different types of noise affect CAEP responses, with greater informational masking causing additional degradation. In noisy conditions, attention can improve target signals’ neural encoding, reflected by an increased CAEP amplitude, which may be facilitated through various inhibitory mechanisms at both pre-attentive and attentive levels. While previous research has mainly focused on inhibition effects during attentive auditory processing in noise, the impact of noise on the neural response during the pre-attentive phase remains unclear. Therefore, this preliminary study aimed to assess the auditory gating response, reflective of the sensory inhibitory stage, to repeated vowel pairs presented in background noise. CAEPs were recorded via high-density EEG in fifteen normal-hearing adults in quiet and noise conditions with low and high informational masking. The difference between the average CAEP peak amplitude evoked by each vowel in the pair was compared across conditions. Scalp maps were generated to observe general cortical inhibitory networks in each condition. Significant gating occurred in quiet, while noise conditions resulted in a significantly decreased gating response. The gating function was significantly degraded in noise with less informational masking content, coinciding with a reduced activation of inhibitory gating networks. These findings illustrate the adverse effect of noise on pre-attentive inhibition related to speech perception. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neural Correlates of Perception in Noise in the Auditory System)
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16 pages, 971 KiB  
Review
The Molecular Mechanism of Cold-Stress Tolerance: Cold Responsive Genes and Their Mechanisms in Rice (Oryza sativa L.)
by Nida Shahzad, Hafiz Ghulam Nabi, Lei Qiao and Wenqiang Li
Biology 2024, 13(6), 442; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060442 - 17 Jun 2024
Abstract
Rice (Oryza sativa L.) production is highly susceptible to temperature fluctuations, which can significantly reduce plant growth and development at different developmental stages, resulting in a dramatic loss of grain yield. Over the past century, substantial efforts have been undertaken to investigate [...] Read more.
Rice (Oryza sativa L.) production is highly susceptible to temperature fluctuations, which can significantly reduce plant growth and development at different developmental stages, resulting in a dramatic loss of grain yield. Over the past century, substantial efforts have been undertaken to investigate the physiological, biochemical, and molecular mechanisms of cold stress tolerance in rice. This review aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the recent developments and trends in this field. We summarized the previous advancements and methodologies used for identifying cold-responsive genes and the molecular mechanisms of cold tolerance in rice. Integration of new technologies has significantly improved studies in this era, facilitating the identification of essential genes, QTLs, and molecular modules in rice. These findings have accelerated the molecular breeding of cold-resistant rice varieties. In addition, functional genomics, including the investigation of natural variations in alleles and artificially developed mutants, is emerging as an exciting new approach to investigating cold tolerance. Looking ahead, it is imperative for scientists to evaluate the collective impacts of these novel genes to develop rice cultivars resilient to global climate change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Mechanisms of Plant Stress Adaptation)
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15 pages, 3011 KiB  
Article
Promising New Methods Based on the SOD Enzyme and SAUR36 Gene to Screen for Canola Materials with Heavy Metal Resistance
by Yue Dai, Hao Chen, Yufang Li, Rongkui Hui and Zhenqian Zhang
Biology 2024, 13(6), 441; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060441 - 17 Jun 2024
Abstract
Canola is the largest self-produced vegetable oil source in China, although excessive levels of cadmium, lead, and arsenic seriously affect its yield. Therefore, developing methods to identify canola materials with good heavy metal tolerance is a hot topic for canola breeding. In this [...] Read more.
Canola is the largest self-produced vegetable oil source in China, although excessive levels of cadmium, lead, and arsenic seriously affect its yield. Therefore, developing methods to identify canola materials with good heavy metal tolerance is a hot topic for canola breeding. In this study, canola near-isogenic lines with different oil contents (F338 (40.62%) and F335 (46.68%) as the control) and heavy metal tolerances were used as raw materials. In an experiment with 100 times the safe standard values, the superoxide dismutase (SOD) and peroxidase (POD) activities of F335 were 32.02 mmol/mg and 71.84 mmol/mg, while the activities of F338 were 24.85 mmol/mg and 63.86 mmol/mg, exhibiting significant differences. The DEGs and DAPs in the MAPK signaling pathway of the plant hormone signal transduction pathway and other related pathways were analyzed and verified using RT-qPCR. SAUR36 and SAUR32 were identified as the key differential genes. The expression of the SAUR36 gene in canola materials planted in the experimental field was significantly higher than in the control, and FY958 exhibited the largest difference (27.82 times). In this study, SOD and SAUR36 were found to be closely related to heavy metal stress tolerance. Therefore, they may be used to screen for new canola materials with good heavy metal stress tolerance for canola breeding. Full article
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5 pages, 195 KiB  
Editorial
Conservation and Evolution of Wildlife in the Context of Climate Change and Human Population Growth
by Wenbo Liao and Lingsen Cao
Biology 2024, 13(6), 440; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060440 - 17 Jun 2024
Viewed by 152
Abstract
Global climate change results in variations in morphological traits, resource competition, species diversity, physiological activity, genetic diversity, habitat use, distributional range, and conservation status in organisms [...] Full article
17 pages, 798 KiB  
Article
Genetic Polymorphisms in Exon 5 and Intron 5 and 7 of AIRE Are Associated with Rheumatoid Arthritis Risk in a Hungarian Population
by Bálint Bérczi, Nóra Nusser, Iván Péter, Balázs Németh, Ágota Kulisch, Zsuzsanna Kiss and Zoltán Gyöngyi
Biology 2024, 13(6), 439; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060439 - 15 Jun 2024
Viewed by 184
Abstract
Background: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is chronically persistent synovitis and systemic inflammation. Although multiple contributors are detected, only one is pivotal in the neonatal period: the negative selection of autoimmune naïve T-cells by the autoimmune regulator (AIRE) transcriptional factor. Methods: Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in [...] Read more.
Background: Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is chronically persistent synovitis and systemic inflammation. Although multiple contributors are detected, only one is pivotal in the neonatal period: the negative selection of autoimmune naïve T-cells by the autoimmune regulator (AIRE) transcriptional factor. Methods: Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the DNA-binding site of AIRE may determine its function and expression. We intended to analyse site-specific allelic polymorphisms in two exon (rs878081 and rs1055311) and three intron (rs1003853, rs2075876, and rs1003854) loci with an RA risk. Our analytical case-control study analysed 270 RA patients and 322 control subjects in five different genetic models using quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) with TaqMan® assays. Results: Statistically significant differences were found between the odds of allelic polymorphisms in the loci of rs878081, rs1003854, and rs1003853 among the controls and RA patients, and the disease activity seemed to be significantly associated with the genotypic subgroups of rs878081 and rs1055311. Our in silico analysis supported this, suggesting that allele-specific alterations in the binding affinity of transcriptional factor families might determine RA activity. Conclusion: Our findings highlight the involvement of neonatal self-tolerance in RA pathogenesis, providing novel insights into disease development and paving the way for an analysis of further site-specific genetic polymorphisms in AIRE to expand the intervention time for RA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Genetics and Pathways Underlying Chronic and Age-Related Disease)
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17 pages, 3495 KiB  
Article
The Extraction Using Deep Eutectic Solvents and Evaluation of Tea Saponin
by Jianjun Guo, Nanshan Zhao, Yaxin Zhao, Hao Jin, Guozhi Sun, Jing Yu, Haihua Zhang, Jianzhong Shao, Meilan Yu, Dongfeng Yang and Zongsuo Liang
Biology 2024, 13(6), 438; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060438 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 252
Abstract
Tea saponins have high surface-active and biological activities and are widely used in chemicals, food, pharmaceuticals, and pesticides. Tea saponins are usually extracted using ethanol or water, but both methods have their disadvantages, including a negative impact on the environment, high energy consumption, [...] Read more.
Tea saponins have high surface-active and biological activities and are widely used in chemicals, food, pharmaceuticals, and pesticides. Tea saponins are usually extracted using ethanol or water, but both methods have their disadvantages, including a negative impact on the environment, high energy consumption, and low purity. In this study, we explored an effective process for extracting tea saponins from tea meal using deep eutectic solvents combined with ultrasonic extraction and enzymatic techniques. The experimental results showed that a high extraction efficiency of 20.93 ± 0.48% could be achieved in 20 min using an ultrasonic power of 40% and a binary DES consisting of betaine and ethylene glycol (with a molar ratio of 1:3) at a material–liquid ratio of 1:35 and that the purity of the tea saponins after purification by a large-pore adsorption resin reached 95.94%, which was higher than that of commercially available standard tea saponin samples. In addition, the extracted tea saponins were evaluated for their antioxidant and bacteriostatic activities using chemical and biological methods; the results showed that the tea saponins extracted using these methods possessed antioxidant properties and displayed significant antibacterial activity. Therefore, the present study developed a method for using deep eutectic solvents as an environmentally friendly technological solution for obtaining high-purity tea saponins from tea meal oil. This is expected to replace the current organic solvent and water extraction process and has great potential for industrial development and a number of possible applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Science)
16 pages, 8292 KiB  
Article
The Response of Soil Respiration to Temperature and Humidity in the Thermokarst Depression Zone of the Headwater Wetlands of Qinghai Lake
by Yahui Mao, Kelong Chen, Wei Ji and Yanli Yang
Biology 2024, 13(6), 437; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060437 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 265
Abstract
As the climate warms, the thickening of the active layer of permafrost has led to permafrost melting and surface collapse, forming thermokarst landforms. These changes significantly impact regional vegetation, soil physicochemical properties, and hydrological processes, thereby exacerbating regional carbon cycling. This study analyzed [...] Read more.
As the climate warms, the thickening of the active layer of permafrost has led to permafrost melting and surface collapse, forming thermokarst landforms. These changes significantly impact regional vegetation, soil physicochemical properties, and hydrological processes, thereby exacerbating regional carbon cycling. This study analyzed the relationship between soil respiration rate (Rs), soil temperature (T), and volumetric water content (VWC) in the thermokarst depression zone of the headwater wetlands of Qinghai Lake, revealing their influence on these soil parameters. Results showed a significant positive correlation between soil temperature and Rs (p < 0.001), and a significant negative correlation between VWC and Rs (p < 0.001). The inhibitory effect of VWC on Rs in the thermokarst depression zone was stronger than under natural conditions (p < 0.05). Single-factor models indicated that the temperature-driven model had higher explanatory power for Rs variation in both the thermokarst depression zone (R2 = 0.509) and under natural conditions (R2 = 0.414), while the humidity-driven model had lower explanatory power. Dual-factor models further improved explanatory power, slightly more so in the thermokarst depression zone. This indicates that temperature and humidity jointly drive Rs. Additionally, during the daytime, temperature had a more significant impact on Rs under natural conditions, while increased VWC inhibited Rs. At night, the positive correlation between Rs and temperature in the thermokarst depression zone increased significantly. The temperature sensitivity (Q10) values of Rs were 3.32 and 1.80 for the thermokarst depression zone and natural conditions, respectively, indicating higher sensitivity to temperature changes at night in the thermokarst depression zone. This study highlights the complexity of soil respiration responses to temperature and humidity in the thermokarst depression zone of Qinghai Lake’s headwater wetlands, contributing to understanding carbon cycling in wetland ecosystems and predicting wetland carbon emissions under climate change. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Ecology)
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14 pages, 7753 KiB  
Article
Assessing Reptile Conservation Status under Global Climate Change
by Qian Li, Weijie Shao, Ying Jiang, Chengzhi Yan and Wenbo Liao
Biology 2024, 13(6), 436; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060436 - 13 Jun 2024
Viewed by 263
Abstract
Global climate change drives variations in species distribution patterns and affects biodiversity, potentially increasing the risk of species extinction. Investigating the potential distribution range of species under future global climate change is crucial for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem management. In this study, we [...] Read more.
Global climate change drives variations in species distribution patterns and affects biodiversity, potentially increasing the risk of species extinction. Investigating the potential distribution range of species under future global climate change is crucial for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem management. In this study, we collected distributional data for 5282 reptile species to assess their conservation status based on distributional ranges using species distribution models. Our predictions indicate that the potential distribution ranges for over half of these species are projected to decrease under different scenarios. Under future scenarios with relatively low carbon emissions, the increase in the number of threatened reptiles is significantly lower, highlighting the importance of human efforts. Surprisingly, we identified some endangered species that are projected to expand their distribution ranges, underscoring the potential positive effects of climate change on some special species. Our findings emphasize the increased extinction risk faced by reptile species due to climate change and highlight the urgent need to mitigate the effects of habitat degradation and human activities on their potential distribution in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Ecology)
16 pages, 828 KiB  
Article
Geographical–Historical Analysis of the Herbarium Specimens Representing the Economically Important Family Amaranthaceae (Chenopodiaceae-Amaranthaceae Clade) Collected in 1821–2022 and Preserved in the Herbarium of the Jagiellonian University in Krakow
by Agata Stadnicka-Futoma and Marcin Nobis
Biology 2024, 13(6), 435; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060435 - 13 Jun 2024
Viewed by 245
Abstract
Herbaria constitute a form of documentation, store and secure comparative material, as well as constitute an extra original gene bank. They are an invaluable database among others for the biological, ethnobotanical and agricultural sciences. The digitization of herbarium collections significantly facilitates access to [...] Read more.
Herbaria constitute a form of documentation, store and secure comparative material, as well as constitute an extra original gene bank. They are an invaluable database among others for the biological, ethnobotanical and agricultural sciences. The digitization of herbarium collections significantly facilitates access to archival materials; however, searching them is still time-consuming. Therefore, our work aims to analyze the herbarium collection of 8801 sheets for specimens representing the economically important family Amaranthaceae (Chenopodiaceae-Amaranthaceae clade) deposited the oldest herbarium in Poland, the herbarium of the Jagiellonian University (KRA). These specimens have been collected from almost all the continents in dozens of countries for over 200 years. The analyses conducted, including the taxonomic coverage, geographical characteristics and origin, temporal coverage and utility importance of representative species, present the discussed resources in a more accessible way and may become a more attractive form for scientists potentially interested in more advanced research work. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Science)
19 pages, 1420 KiB  
Review
Mechanobiology of Adipocytes
by Sean P. Blade, Dylan J. Falkowski, Sarah N. Bachand, Steven J. Pagano and LiKang Chin
Biology 2024, 13(6), 434; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060434 - 13 Jun 2024
Viewed by 378
Abstract
The growing obesity epidemic necessitates increased research on adipocyte and adipose tissue function and disease mechanisms that progress obesity. Historically, adipocytes were viewed simply as storage for excess energy. However, recent studies have demonstrated that adipocytes play a critical role in whole-body homeostasis, [...] Read more.
The growing obesity epidemic necessitates increased research on adipocyte and adipose tissue function and disease mechanisms that progress obesity. Historically, adipocytes were viewed simply as storage for excess energy. However, recent studies have demonstrated that adipocytes play a critical role in whole-body homeostasis, are involved in cell communication, experience forces in vivo, and respond to mechanical stimuli. Changes to the adipocyte mechanical microenvironment can affect function and, in some cases, contribute to disease. The aim of this review is to summarize the current literature on the mechanobiology of adipocytes. We reviewed over 100 papers on how mechanical stress is sensed by the adipocyte, the effects on cell behavior, and the use of cell culture scaffolds, particularly those with tunable stiffness, to study adipocyte behavior, adipose cell and tissue mechanical properties, and computational models. From our review, we conclude that adipocytes are responsive to mechanical stimuli, cell function and adipogenesis can be dictated by the mechanical environment, the measurement of mechanical properties is highly dependent on testing methods, and current modeling practices use many different approaches to recapitulate the complex behavior of adipocytes and adipose tissue. This review is intended to aid future studies by summarizing the current literature on adipocyte mechanobiology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biophysics)
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19 pages, 6327 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Distribution Characteristics of Jellyfish and Environmental Factors in the Seawater Intake Area of the Haiyang Nuclear Power Plant in China
by Yunpeng Song, Tiantian Wang, Minsi Xiong, Shenglong Yang, Heng Zhang, Jie Ying, Yongchuang Shi, Guoqing Zhao, Xiumei Zhang, Xiaodan Liu, Cankun Lin, Zuli Wu and Yumei Wu
Biology 2024, 13(6), 433; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060433 - 12 Jun 2024
Viewed by 386
Abstract
In recent years, there have been frequent jellyfish outbreaks in Chinese coastal waters, significantly impacting the structure, functionality, safety, and economy of nuclear power plant cooling water intake and nearby ecosystems. Therefore, this study focuses on jellyfish outbreaks in Chinese coastal waters, particularly [...] Read more.
In recent years, there have been frequent jellyfish outbreaks in Chinese coastal waters, significantly impacting the structure, functionality, safety, and economy of nuclear power plant cooling water intake and nearby ecosystems. Therefore, this study focuses on jellyfish outbreaks in Chinese coastal waters, particularly near the Shandong Peninsula. By analyzing jellyfish abundance data, a Generalized Additive Model integrating environmental factors reveals that temperature and salinity greatly influence jellyfish density. The results show variations in jellyfish density among years, with higher densities in coastal areas. The model explains 42.2% of the variance, highlighting the positive correlation between temperature (20–26 °C) and jellyfish density, as well as the impact of salinity (27.5–29‰). Additionally, ocean currents play a significant role in nearshore jellyfish aggregation, with a correlation between ocean currents and site coordinates. This study aims to investigate the relationship between jellyfish blooms and environmental factors. The results obtained from the study provide data support for the prevention and control of blockages in nuclear power plant cooling systems, and provide a data basis for the implementation of monitoring measures in nuclear power plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Marine Biology)
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12 pages, 2128 KiB  
Article
Using a Combination of Novel Research Tools to Understand Social Interaction in the Drosophila melanogaster Model for Fragile X Syndrome
by Maja Stojkovic, Milan Petrovic, Maria Capovilla, Sara Milojevic, Vedrana Makevic, Dejan B. Budimirovic, Louise Corscadden, Shuhan He and Dragana Protic
Biology 2024, 13(6), 432; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060432 - 12 Jun 2024
Viewed by 341
Abstract
Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common monogenic cause of inherited intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder, is caused by a full mutation (>200 CGG repeats) in the Fragile X Messenger Ribonucleoprotein 1 (FMR1) gene. Individuals with FXS experience various challenges [...] Read more.
Fragile X syndrome (FXS), the most common monogenic cause of inherited intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder, is caused by a full mutation (>200 CGG repeats) in the Fragile X Messenger Ribonucleoprotein 1 (FMR1) gene. Individuals with FXS experience various challenges related to social interaction (SI). Animal models, such as the Drosophila melanogaster model for FXS where the only ortholog of human FMR1 (dFMR1) is mutated, have played a crucial role in the understanding of FXS. The aim of this study was to investigate SI in the dFMR1B55 mutants (the groups of flies of both sexes simultaneously) using the novel Drosophila Shallow Chamber and a Python data processing pipeline based on social network analysis (SNA). In comparison with wild-type flies (w1118), SNA analysis in dFMR1B55 mutants revealed hypoactivity, fewer connections in their networks, longer interaction duration, a lower ability to transmit information efficiently, fewer alternative pathways for information transmission, a higher variability in the number of interactions they achieved, and flies tended to stay near the boundaries of the testing chamber. These observed alterations indicate the presence of characteristic strain-dependent social networks in dFMR1B55 flies, commonly referred to as the group phenotype. Finally, combining novel research tools is a valuable method for SI research in fruit flies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue From Basics to Applications of Gene Regulatory Networks)
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22 pages, 2192 KiB  
Review
Double-Edged Sword: Exploring the Mitochondria–Complement Bidirectional Connection in Cellular Response and Disease
by Jingfei (Carly) Lin, Sinwoo (Wendy) Hwang, Honglin Luo and Yasir Mohamud
Biology 2024, 13(6), 431; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060431 - 11 Jun 2024
Viewed by 422
Abstract
Mitochondria serve an ultimate purpose that seeks to balance the life and death of cells, a role that extends well beyond the tissue and organ systems to impact not only normal physiology but also the pathogenesis of diverse diseases. Theorized to have originated [...] Read more.
Mitochondria serve an ultimate purpose that seeks to balance the life and death of cells, a role that extends well beyond the tissue and organ systems to impact not only normal physiology but also the pathogenesis of diverse diseases. Theorized to have originated from ancient proto-bacteria, mitochondria share similarities with bacterial cells, including their own circular DNA, double-membrane structures, and fission dynamics. It is no surprise, then, that mitochondria interact with a bacterium-targeting immune pathway known as a complement system. The complement system is an ancient and sophisticated arm of the immune response that serves as the body’s first line of defense against microbial invaders. It operates through a complex cascade of protein activations, rapidly identifying and neutralizing pathogens, and even aiding in the clearance of damaged cells and immune complexes. This dynamic system, intertwining innate and adaptive immunity, holds secrets to understanding numerous diseases. In this review, we explore the bidirectional interplay between mitochondrial dysfunction and the complement system through the release of mitochondrial damage-associated molecular patterns. Additionally, we explore several mitochondria- and complement-related diseases and the potential for new therapeutic strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mitochondria: The Diseases' Cause and Cure)
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15 pages, 4187 KiB  
Article
Genetic Analysis and Fine Mapping of QTL for the Erect Leaf in Mutant mths29 Induced through Fast Neutron in Wheat
by Zhixin Yang, Jiayu Gu, Minghui Zhao, Xiaofeng Fan, Huijun Guo, Yongdun Xie, Jinfeng Zhang, Hongchun Xiong, Linshu Zhao, Shirong Zhao, Yuping Ding, Fuquan Kong, Li Sui, Le Xu and Luxiang Liu
Biology 2024, 13(6), 430; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060430 - 11 Jun 2024
Viewed by 291
Abstract
The erect leaf plays a crucial role in determining plant architecture, with its growth and development regulated by genetic factors. However, there has been a lack of comprehensive studies on the regulatory mechanisms governing wheat lamina joint development, thus failing to meet current [...] Read more.
The erect leaf plays a crucial role in determining plant architecture, with its growth and development regulated by genetic factors. However, there has been a lack of comprehensive studies on the regulatory mechanisms governing wheat lamina joint development, thus failing to meet current breeding demands. In this study, a wheat erect leaf mutant, mths29, induced via fast neutron mutagenesis, was utilized for QTL fine mapping and investigation of lamina joint development. Genetic analysis of segregating populations derived from mths29 and Jimai22 revealed that the erect leaf trait was controlled by a dominant single gene. Using BSR sequencing and map-based cloning techniques, the QTL responsible for the erect leaf trait was mapped to a 1.03 Mb physical region on chromosome 5A. Transcriptome analysis highlighted differential expression of genes associated with cell division and proliferation, as well as several crucial transcription factors and kinases implicated in lamina joint development, particularly in the boundary cells of the preligule zone in mths29. These findings establish a solid foundation for understanding lamina joint development and hold promise for potential improvements in wheat plant architecture. Full article
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10 pages, 3003 KiB  
Article
Integrin β3 Reprogramming Stemness in HER2-Positive Breast Cancer Cell Lines
by Asiye Busra Boz Er
Biology 2024, 13(6), 429; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060429 - 11 Jun 2024
Viewed by 355
Abstract
HER2-positive breast cancer, characterised by overexpressed HER2 levels, is associated with aggressive tumour behaviour and poor prognosis. Trastuzumab is a standard treatment; however, approximately 50% of patients develop resistance within one year. This study investigates the role of ITGβ3 in promoting stemness and [...] Read more.
HER2-positive breast cancer, characterised by overexpressed HER2 levels, is associated with aggressive tumour behaviour and poor prognosis. Trastuzumab is a standard treatment; however, approximately 50% of patients develop resistance within one year. This study investigates the role of ITGβ3 in promoting stemness and resistance in HER2-positive breast cancer cell lines (HCC1599 and SKBR3). The findings demonstrate that chronic exposure to trastuzumab upregulates stem cell markers (SOX2, OCT4, KLF4, NANOG, SALL4, ALDH, BMI1, Nestin, Musashi 1, TIM3, CXCR4). Given the documented role of RGD-binding integrins in drug resistance and stemness, we specifically investigated their impact on resistant cells. Overexpression of ITGβ3 enhances the expression of these stem cell markers, while silencing ITGβ3 reduces their expression, suggesting a major role for ITGβ3 in maintaining stemness and resistance. Further analysis reveals that ITGβ3 activates the Notch signalling pathway, known for regulating stem cell maintenance. The combination of trastuzumab and cilengitide, an integrin inhibitor, significantly decreases the expression of stem cell markers in resistant cells, indicating a potential therapeutic strategy to overcome resistance. These results identify the importance of ITGβ3 in mediating stemness and trastuzumab resistance through Notch signalling in HER2-positive breast cancer, offering new approaches for enhancing treatment efficacy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cancer Stem Cells Biology)
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13 pages, 1235 KiB  
Article
Effect of Metaldehyde on Survival, Enzyme Activities, and Histopathology of the Apple Snail Pomacea canaliculata (Lamarck 1822)
by Jimin Liu, Xuan Chen, Jiaen Zhang, Fucheng Yao, Zhaoji Shi, Yingtong Chen, Qi Chen and Zhong Qin
Biology 2024, 13(6), 428; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060428 - 11 Jun 2024
Viewed by 250
Abstract
Pomacea canaliculata, as an invasive exotic species in Asia, can adversely affect crop yields, eco-environment, and human health. Application of molluscicides containing metaldehyde is one effective method for controlling P. canaliculata. In order to investigate the effects of metaldehyde on adult snails, [...] Read more.
Pomacea canaliculata, as an invasive exotic species in Asia, can adversely affect crop yields, eco-environment, and human health. Application of molluscicides containing metaldehyde is one effective method for controlling P. canaliculata. In order to investigate the effects of metaldehyde on adult snails, we conducted acute toxicological experiments to investigate the changes in enzyme activities and histopathology after 24 h and 48 h of metaldehyde action. The results showed that the median lethal concentrations (LC) of metaldehyde on P. canaliculata were 3.792, 2.195, 1.833, and 1.706 mg/L at exposure times of 24, 48, 72, and 96 h, respectively. Treatment and time significantly affected acetylcholinesterase (AChE), glutathione S-transferase (GST), and total antioxidant capacity (TAC) activity, with sex significantly affecting AChE, GST, and TAC activity and time significantly affecting carboxylesterase (CarE). In addition, the interaction of treatment and time significantly affected the activity of GST, CarE and TAC. In addition, histopathological changes occurred in the digestive glands, gills and gastropods of apple snail exposed to metaldehyde. Histological examination of the digestive glands included atrophy of the digestive cells, widening of the hemolymph gap, and an increase in basophils. In treated snails, the hemolymph gap in the gills was widely dilated, the columnar cells were disorganized or even necrotic, and the columnar muscle cells in the ventral foot were loosely arranged and the muscle fibers reduced. The findings of this study can provide some references for controlling the toxicity mechanism of invasive species. Full article
17 pages, 4202 KiB  
Article
A Traditional Chinese Medicine, Zhenqi Granule, Potentially Alleviates Dextran Sulfate Sodium-Induced Mouse Colitis Symptoms
by Xiuxiu Qiu, Wentao Luo, Haotian Li, Tingting Li, Yaxue Huang, Qi Huang and Rui Zhou
Biology 2024, 13(6), 427; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060427 - 10 Jun 2024
Viewed by 302
Abstract
Ulcerative colitis (UC) is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes chronic inflammation in the large intestine. The etiology of UC is complex and incompletely understood, with potential contributing factors including genetic susceptibility, environmental influences, immune dysregulation, and gut barrier dysfunction. Despite available therapeutic [...] Read more.
Ulcerative colitis (UC) is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes chronic inflammation in the large intestine. The etiology of UC is complex and incompletely understood, with potential contributing factors including genetic susceptibility, environmental influences, immune dysregulation, and gut barrier dysfunction. Despite available therapeutic drugs, the suboptimal cure rate for UC emphasizes the necessity of developing novel therapeutics. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has attracted great interest in the treatment of such chronic inflammatory diseases due to its advantages, such as multi-targets and low side effects. In this study, a mouse model of Dextran Sulfate Sodium (DSS)-induced acute colitis was established and the efficacy of Zhenqi Granule, a TCM preparation composed of the extractives from Astragali Radix and Fructus Ligustri Lucidi, was evaluated. The results showed that treatment with Zhenqi Granule prior to or post-DSS induction could alleviate the symptoms of colitis, including weight loss, diarrhea, hematochezia, colon length shortening, and pathological damage of colon tissues of the DSS-treated mice. Further, network pharmacology analysis showed that there were 98 common targets between the active components of Zhenqi Granule and the targets of UC, and the common targets were involved in the regulation of inflammatory signaling pathways. Our results showed that Zhenqi Granule had preventive and therapeutic effects on acute colitis in mice, and the mechanism may be that the active components of Zhenqi Granule participated in the regulation of inflammatory response. This study provided data reference for further exploring the mechanism of Zhenqi Granule and also provided potential treatment strategies for UC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medical Biology)
17 pages, 1182 KiB  
Article
Neuroprotective Effect of Marrubium vulgare Extract in Scopolamine-Induced Cognitive Impairment in Rats: Behavioral and Biochemical Approaches
by Maria Lazarova, Miroslava Stefanova, Petko Denev, Teodora Taseva, Valya Vassileva and Krasimira Tasheva
Biology 2024, 13(6), 426; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060426 - 9 Jun 2024
Viewed by 444
Abstract
The potential of Marrubium vulgare to alleviate scopolamine (Sco)-induced deficits in spatial working memory has drawn considerable scientific interest. This effect is partly attributed to its potent antioxidant and acetylcholinesterase inhibitory (AChEI) activities. This study examined the effects of M. vulgare extract, standardized [...] Read more.
The potential of Marrubium vulgare to alleviate scopolamine (Sco)-induced deficits in spatial working memory has drawn considerable scientific interest. This effect is partly attributed to its potent antioxidant and acetylcholinesterase inhibitory (AChEI) activities. This study examined the effects of M. vulgare extract, standardized to marrubiin content, on recognition memory in healthy and Sco-treated rats. Male Wistar rats (200–250 g) were divided into four groups. The extract was orally administered for 21 days and Sco (2 mg/kg) was intraperitoneally injected for 11 consecutive days. Memory performance was assessed using the novel object recognition test. Levels of acetylcholine (ACh), noradrenaline (NA), serotonin (Sero), and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and the phosphorylation of cAMP response element-binding protein (p-CREB) were evaluated in the cortex and hippocampus via ELISA. BDNF and CREB expression levels were assessed using RT-PCR. The results showed that M. vulgare significantly alleviated Sco-induced memory impairment, preserved cholinergic function in the hippocampus, increased NA levels in the brain, and restored pCREB expression in the cortex following Sco-induced reduction. In healthy rats, the extract upregulated BDNF, pCREB, and Bcl2 expression. Our findings indicate that the neuroprotective effects of M. vulgare may be linked to the modulation of cholinergic function, regulation of NA neurotransmission, and influence on key memory-related molecules. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Models of Neurodegenerative Diseases)
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14 pages, 3969 KiB  
Review
C. elegans Germline as Three Distinct Tumor Models
by Mariah Jones, Mina Norman, Alex Minh Tiet, Jiwoo Lee and Myon Hee Lee
Biology 2024, 13(6), 425; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060425 - 8 Jun 2024
Viewed by 443
Abstract
Tumor cells display abnormal growth and division, avoiding the natural process of cell death. These cells can be benign (non-cancerous growth) or malignant (cancerous growth). Over the past few decades, numerous in vitro or in vivo tumor models have been employed to understand [...] Read more.
Tumor cells display abnormal growth and division, avoiding the natural process of cell death. These cells can be benign (non-cancerous growth) or malignant (cancerous growth). Over the past few decades, numerous in vitro or in vivo tumor models have been employed to understand the molecular mechanisms associated with tumorigenesis in diverse regards. However, our comprehension of how non-tumor cells transform into tumor cells at molecular and cellular levels remains incomplete. The nematode C. elegans has emerged as an excellent model organism for exploring various phenomena, including tumorigenesis. Although C. elegans does not naturally develop cancer, it serves as a valuable platform for identifying oncogenes and the underlying mechanisms within a live organism. In this review, we describe three distinct germline tumor models in C. elegans, highlighting their associated mechanisms and related regulators: (1) ectopic proliferation due to aberrant activation of GLP-1/Notch signaling, (2) meiotic entry failure resulting from the loss of GLD-1/STAR RNA-binding protein, (3) spermatogenic dedifferentiation caused by the loss of PUF-8/PUF RNA-binding protein. Each model requires the mutations of specific genes (glp-1, gld-1, and puf-8) and operates through distinct molecular mechanisms. Despite these differences in the origins of tumorigenesis, the internal regulatory networks within each tumor model display shared features. Given the conservation of many of the regulators implicated in C. elegans tumorigenesis, it is proposed that these unique models hold significant potential for enhancing our comprehension of the broader control mechanisms governing tumorigenesis. Full article
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22 pages, 1314 KiB  
Review
The Landscape of Pediatric High-Grade Gliomas: The Virtues and Pitfalls of Pre-Clinical Models
by Liam M. Furst, Enola M. Roussel, Ryan F. Leung, Ankita M. George, Sarah A. Best, James R. Whittle, Ron Firestein, Maree C. Faux and David D. Eisenstat
Biology 2024, 13(6), 424; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060424 - 7 Jun 2024
Viewed by 339
Abstract
Pediatric high-grade gliomas (pHGG) are malignant and usually fatal central nervous system (CNS) WHO Grade 4 tumors. The majority of pHGG consist of diffuse midline gliomas (DMG), H3.3 or H3.1 K27 altered, or diffuse hemispheric gliomas (DHG) (H3.3 G34-mutant). Due to diffuse tumor [...] Read more.
Pediatric high-grade gliomas (pHGG) are malignant and usually fatal central nervous system (CNS) WHO Grade 4 tumors. The majority of pHGG consist of diffuse midline gliomas (DMG), H3.3 or H3.1 K27 altered, or diffuse hemispheric gliomas (DHG) (H3.3 G34-mutant). Due to diffuse tumor infiltration of eloquent brain areas, especially for DMG, surgery has often been limited and chemotherapy has not been effective, leaving fractionated radiation to the involved field as the current standard of care. pHGG has only been classified as molecularly distinct from adult HGG since 2012 through Next-Generation sequencing approaches, which have shown pHGG to be epigenetically regulated and specific tumor sub-types to be representative of dysregulated differentiating cells. To translate discovery research into novel therapies, improved pre-clinical models that more adequately represent the tumor biology of pHGG are required. This review will summarize the molecular characteristics of different pHGG sub-types, with a specific focus on histone K27M mutations and the dysregulated gene expression profiles arising from these mutations. Current and emerging pre-clinical models for pHGG will be discussed, including commonly used patient-derived cell lines and in vivo modeling techniques, encompassing patient-derived xenograft murine models and genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs). Lastly, emerging techniques to model CNS tumors within a human brain environment using brain organoids through co-culture will be explored. As models that more reliably represent pHGG continue to be developed, targetable biological and genetic vulnerabilities in the disease will be more rapidly identified, leading to better treatments and improved clinical outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology of Brain Tumors: State of the Art and Future Directions)
12 pages, 3653 KiB  
Article
Self-Incompatibility in Devil’s Potato (Echites umbellatus Jacq., Apocynaceae) May Explain Why Few Flowers Set Fruit
by Suzanne Koptur, Andrea Salas Primoli, Imeña Valdes and Maha Nusrat
Biology 2024, 13(6), 423; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060423 - 7 Jun 2024
Viewed by 372
Abstract
Pollinators are needed for the reproduction of Echites umbellatus, and only sphingid moths have mouthparts long enough to reach the nectar at the bottom of the species’ long, twisted floral tube. Though plants produce many flowers over a period of several months, [...] Read more.
Pollinators are needed for the reproduction of Echites umbellatus, and only sphingid moths have mouthparts long enough to reach the nectar at the bottom of the species’ long, twisted floral tube. Though plants produce many flowers over a period of several months, one observes very few fruits in nature. We asked: (1) Are plants self-compatible, or do they need pollen from another individual to set fruit and seed? (2) Are cross-pollinations between unrelated individuals more successful than crosses with relatives? (3) How does the relatedness of pollen and ovule parent plants affect fruit set, seed number, and seed quality? We investigated the breeding system of E. umbellatus by collecting fruits from seven sites, growing plants and performing hand pollinations over a period of several years, collecting and measuring fruits and counting seeds. Echites umbellatus is self-incompatible, though some individuals produce fruit by self-pollination. Cross-pollinations between unrelated individuals set the most fruit (59%), and those that were self-pollinated set the least (9%). Fruit set from cross-pollinations between related individuals was intermediate (32%). Although the number of seeds per fruit did not differ significantly among pollination treatments, fruits from self-pollinations had substantially fewer viable seeds than outcrossed fruits, with fruits from sibling crosses being intermediate. There were higher levels of self-compatibility in the fragment populations compared with plants from intact habitats. Self-incompatibility may explain why fruit set is low in this plant species; future investigation into the breakdown of self-incompatibility in smaller populations is warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Ecology)
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15 pages, 3076 KiB  
Article
Preliminary Study of Scent Rolling in Captive Wolves (Canis lupus L. 1758) in Response to Olfactory Enrichment
by Nikolina Boić, Nikica Jukić, Alma Mikuška, Dora Bjedov, Mislav Kovačić, Tatjana Šalika-Todorović and Mirta Sudarić Bogojević
Biology 2024, 13(6), 422; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060422 - 6 Jun 2024
Viewed by 427
Abstract
Scent rolling, a behaviour observed in various large carnivores like wolves, entails the animal lowering its chin and neck towards a scent, followed by rubbing the head, neck, shoulders, and back into it. This behaviour is prevalent among wolves exposed to diverse scents, [...] Read more.
Scent rolling, a behaviour observed in various large carnivores like wolves, entails the animal lowering its chin and neck towards a scent, followed by rubbing the head, neck, shoulders, and back into it. This behaviour is prevalent among wolves exposed to diverse scents, though its exact purpose remains uncertain. In this study, captive wolves at Osijek Zoo responded differently to odours during olfactory enrichment sessions. In the initial year of this study, the highest level of interest, evidenced by both the frequency of responses and scent-rolling behaviour, was noted when the wolves encountered odours such as curry and rosemary, along with deer/mouflon and rat faeces. While certain odours, such as llama faeces and deer/mouflon faeces, garnered longer durations of interest in the second year of study, others, like guinea pig faeces and oregano, elicited shorter responses. Female wolves demonstrated a higher level of engagement with scents compared with males, particularly through scent rolling behaviour, which was exclusively observed in females during the second year of this study. Interestingly, certain odours did not trigger scent rolling, suggesting selective preferences. On the other hand, sheep’s wool induced the longest duration of scent rolling, and a lack of significant differences in behaviour was observed between morning and afternoon sessions. Despite the existence of multiple hypotheses put forward to explain the causation of scent rolling in wolves, it seems to be elicited by unfamiliar odours. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology, Ecology, Management and Conservation of Canidae)
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22 pages, 2617 KiB  
Review
Molecular Basis of Plant–Pathogen Interactions in the Agricultural Context
by Usman Ijaz, Chenchen Zhao, Sergey Shabala and Meixue Zhou
Biology 2024, 13(6), 421; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060421 - 6 Jun 2024
Viewed by 477
Abstract
Biotic stressors pose significant threats to crop yield, jeopardizing food security and resulting in losses of over USD 220 billion per year by the agriculture industry. Plants activate innate defense mechanisms upon pathogen perception and invasion. The plant immune response comprises numerous concerted [...] Read more.
Biotic stressors pose significant threats to crop yield, jeopardizing food security and resulting in losses of over USD 220 billion per year by the agriculture industry. Plants activate innate defense mechanisms upon pathogen perception and invasion. The plant immune response comprises numerous concerted steps, including the recognition of invading pathogens, signal transduction, and activation of defensive pathways. However, pathogens have evolved various structures to evade plant immunity. Given these facts, genetic improvements to plants are required for sustainable disease management to ensure global food security. Advanced genetic technologies have offered new opportunities to revolutionize and boost plant disease resistance against devastating pathogens. Furthermore, targeting susceptibility (S) genes, such as OsERF922 and BnWRKY70, through CRISPR methodologies offers novel avenues for disrupting the molecular compatibility of pathogens and for introducing durable resistance against them in plants. Here, we provide a critical overview of advances in understanding disease resistance mechanisms. The review also critically examines management strategies under challenging environmental conditions and R-gene-based plant genome-engineering systems intending to enhance plant responses against emerging pathogens. This work underscores the transformative potential of modern genetic engineering practices in revolutionizing plant health and crop disease management while emphasizing the importance of responsible application to ensure sustainable and resilient agricultural systems. Full article
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11 pages, 423 KiB  
Review
Breaking Barriers: Unveiling Sex-Related Differences in Cerebrospinal Fluid Analysis—A Narrative Review
by Raffaella Candeloro, Caterina Ferri, Tiziana Bellini, Maura Pugliatti and Massimiliano Castellazzi
Biology 2024, 13(6), 420; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060420 - 5 Jun 2024
Viewed by 479
Abstract
(1) Background: The recent emphasis on sexual and gender diversity’s impact on human health underscores the need for tailored diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in neurology. The aim of this article is to conduct a narrative review of the available scientific literature on sex [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The recent emphasis on sexual and gender diversity’s impact on human health underscores the need for tailored diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in neurology. The aim of this article is to conduct a narrative review of the available scientific literature on sex differences in cerebrospinal fluid analysis. (2) Methods: The literature search encompassed PubMed databases, focusing on cerebrospinal fluid analysis and sex differences, considering parameters like cerebrospinal fluid protein content, cell count, albumin quotient (QAlb) and intrathecal IgG synthesis. (3) Results: Nine articles from the past two decades were identified, revealing limited research in this area. Males consistently exhibited higher cerebrospinal fluid protein content and albumin quotient values across various pathologies and age groups. Consequently, males more frequently manifested blood–cerebrospinal fluid barrier dysfunction than females. No significant sex differences were observed in cerebrospinal fluid leukocyte count or intrathecal IgG synthesis. (4) Conclusions: This review highlights the dearth of research on sex differences in cerebrospinal fluid analysis, despite consistent findings of higher protein content and albumin quotient values in males. Revisiting current diagnostic thresholds based on sex is crucial for accurate prognosis and personalised treatment strategies in neurological disorders. Moving towards sex-specific approaches in clinical practice is imperative for advancing personalised medicine. Full article
16 pages, 1780 KiB  
Review
A Review on Indigenous Goats of East Africa: A Case for Conservation and Management
by Nelly Kichamu, Putri Kusuma Astuti, George Wanjala, Péter Strausz, Zoltán Bagi and Szilvia Kusza
Biology 2024, 13(6), 419; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060419 - 5 Jun 2024
Viewed by 417
Abstract
Indigenous goats are important in the livelihoods of rural households in East African countries. This is due to their ability to produce and reproduce in different environments and climatic conditions. Even though these indigenous goats are important, there is little available information on [...] Read more.
Indigenous goats are important in the livelihoods of rural households in East African countries. This is due to their ability to produce and reproduce in different environments and climatic conditions. Even though these indigenous goats are important, there is little available information on the genetic characterization of these breeds in Africa and at the international level. This paper reviews the status of indigenous goats, highlighting their production systems, phenotypic and genetic characteristics, and genetic diversity, and proposes potential ways for sustainable improvement and conservation in East African countries. Most households use traditional production systems with various uncharacterized goat breeds and ecotypes, which are hence named after the tribe or locality in which they are found. Most of these goats are classified as small East African breeds, with significant variability in morphological features. Some of the challenges to goat production in this region are indiscriminate crossbreeding, lack of pedigree records, parasites and disease incidences, low-quality pastures, and low levels of management. There is a need for a collaborative approach amongst the actors in goat breeding value chains as well as integrating modern genomic tools into breeding programs to enhance selection. This will ensure the resilience and sustainability of these unique indigenous goat populations in East Africa Full article
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11 pages, 4677 KiB  
Article
Radiation Effects of Normal B-Lymphoblastoid Cells after Exposing Them to Low-Dose-Rate Irradiation from Tritium β-rays
by Bing Deng, Yi Quan, Zhilin Chen and Heyi Wang
Biology 2024, 13(6), 418; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060418 - 5 Jun 2024
Viewed by 289
Abstract
The effects of tritium at low doses and low dose rates have received increasing attention due to recent developments in fusion energy and the associated risks of tritium releases into the environment. Mitochondria have been identified as a potential candidate for studying the [...] Read more.
The effects of tritium at low doses and low dose rates have received increasing attention due to recent developments in fusion energy and the associated risks of tritium releases into the environment. Mitochondria have been identified as a potential candidate for studying the effects of low-dose/low-dose-rate radiation, with extensive experimental results obtained using X-ray irradiation. In this study, irradiation experiments were conducted on normal B-lymphoblastoid cells using HTO at varying doses. When compared to X-ray irradiation, no significant differences in cell viability induced by different doses were observed. However, the results of ATP levels showed a significant difference between the irradiated sample at a dose of 500 mGy by tritium beta-rays and the sham-irradiated sample, while the levels obtained with X-ray irradiation were almost identical to the sham-irradiated sample. In contrast, ATP levels for both tritium beta-rays and X-rays at a dose of 1.0 Gy showed minimal differences compared to the sham-irradiated sample. Furthermore, distinct effects at 500 mGy were also confirmed in both ROS levels and apoptosis results obtained through tritium beta-ray irradiation. This suggests that mitochondria might be a potential sensitive target for investigating the effects of tritium beta-ray irradiation. Full article
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12 pages, 2037 KiB  
Article
Silk Gland Factor 1 Plays a Pivotal Role in Larval Settlement of the Fouling Mussel Mytilopsis sallei
by Jian He, Zhixuan Wang, Zhiwen Wu, Liying Chen and Jianfang Huang
Biology 2024, 13(6), 417; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060417 - 5 Jun 2024
Viewed by 293
Abstract
Most fouling organisms have planktonic larval and benthic adult stages. Larval settlement, the planktonic–benthic transition, is the critical point when biofouling begins. However, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of larval settlement is limited. In our previous studies, we identified that the AMP-activated [...] Read more.
Most fouling organisms have planktonic larval and benthic adult stages. Larval settlement, the planktonic–benthic transition, is the critical point when biofouling begins. However, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of larval settlement is limited. In our previous studies, we identified that the AMP-activated protein kinase-silk gland factor 1 (AMPK-SGF1) pathway was involved in triggering the larval settlement in the fouling mussel M. sallei. In this study, to further confirm the pivotal role of SGF1, multiple targeted binding compounds of SGF1 were obtained using high-throughput virtual screening. It was found that the targeted binding compounds, such as NAD+ and atorvastatin, could significantly induce and inhibit the larval settlement, respectively. Furthermore, the qRT-PCR showed that the expression of the foot proteins’ genes was significantly increased after the exposure to 10 μM NAD+, while the gene expression was significantly suppressed after the exposure to 10 μM atorvastatin. Additionally, the production of the byssus threads of the adults was significantly increased after the exposure to 10–20 μM of NAD+, while the production of the byssus threads was significantly decreased after the exposure to 10–50 μM of atorvastatin. This work will deepen our understanding of SGF1 in triggering the larval settlement in mussels and will provide insights into the potential targets for developing novel antifouling agents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry and Molecular Biology)
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28 pages, 7415 KiB  
Article
Predictors of Speech-in-Noise Understanding in a Population of Occupationally Noise-Exposed Individuals
by Guillaume Andéol, Nihaad Paraouty, Fabrice Giraudet, Nicolas Wallaert, Vincent Isnard, Annie Moulin and Clara Suied
Biology 2024, 13(6), 416; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060416 - 5 Jun 2024
Viewed by 264
Abstract
Understanding speech in noise is particularly difficult for individuals occupationally exposed to noise due to a mix of noise-induced auditory lesions and the energetic masking of speech signals. For years, the monitoring of conventional audiometric thresholds has been the usual method to check [...] Read more.
Understanding speech in noise is particularly difficult for individuals occupationally exposed to noise due to a mix of noise-induced auditory lesions and the energetic masking of speech signals. For years, the monitoring of conventional audiometric thresholds has been the usual method to check and preserve auditory function. Recently, suprathreshold deficits, notably, difficulties in understanding speech in noise, has pointed out the need for new monitoring tools. The present study aims to identify the most important variables that predict speech in noise understanding in order to suggest a new method of hearing status monitoring. Physiological (distortion products of otoacoustic emissions, electrocochleography) and behavioral (amplitude and frequency modulation detection thresholds, conventional and extended high-frequency audiometric thresholds) variables were collected in a population of individuals presenting a relatively homogeneous occupational noise exposure. Those variables were used as predictors in a statistical model (random forest) to predict the scores of three different speech-in-noise tests and a self-report of speech-in-noise ability. The extended high-frequency threshold appears to be the best predictor and therefore an interesting candidate for a new way of monitoring noise-exposed professionals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neural Correlates of Perception in Noise in the Auditory System)
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19 pages, 3453 KiB  
Article
CopG1, a Novel Transcriptional Regulator Affecting Symbiosis in Bradyrhizobium sp. SUTN9-2
by Praneet Wangthaisong, Pongdet Piromyou, Pongpan Songwattana, Tarnee Phimphong, Apisit Songsaeng, Natcha Pruksametanan, Pakpoom Boonchuen, Jenjira Wongdee, Kamonluck Teamtaisong, Nantakorn Boonkerd, Shusei Sato, Panlada Tittabutr and Neung Teaumroong
Biology 2024, 13(6), 415; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology13060415 - 5 Jun 2024
Viewed by 500
Abstract
The symbiotic interaction between leguminous and Bradyrhizobium sp. SUTN9-2 mainly relies on the nodulation process through Nod factors (NFs), while the type IV secretion system (T4SS) acts as an alternative pathway in this symbiosis. Two copies of T4SS (T4SS1 and T4SS2 [...] Read more.
The symbiotic interaction between leguminous and Bradyrhizobium sp. SUTN9-2 mainly relies on the nodulation process through Nod factors (NFs), while the type IV secretion system (T4SS) acts as an alternative pathway in this symbiosis. Two copies of T4SS (T4SS1 and T4SS2) are located on the chromosome of SUTN9-2. ΔT4SS1 reduces both nodule number and nitrogenase activity in all SUTN9-2 nodulating legumes. The functions of three selected genes (copG1, traG1, and virD21) within the region of T4SS1 were examined. We generated deleted mutants and tested them in Vigna radiata cv. SUT4. ΔtraG1 and ΔvirD21 exhibited lower invasion efficiency at the early stages of root infection but could be recently restored. In contrast, ΔcopG1 completely hindered nodule organogenesis and nitrogenase activity in all tested legumes. ΔcopG1 showed low expression of the nodulation gene and ttsI but exhibited high expression levels of the T4SS genes, traG1 and trbE1. The secreted proteins from ΔT4SS1 were down-regulated compared to the wild-type. Although ΔcopG1 secreted several proteins after flavonoid induction, T3SS (nopP and nopX) and the C4-dicarboxylate transporter (dct) were not detected. These results confirm the crucial role of the copG1 gene as a novel key regulator in the symbiotic relationship between SUTN9-2 and legumes. Full article
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