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Plants, Volume 12, Issue 4 (February-2 2023) – 285 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Although boron (B) requirement for plant growth was demonstrated a century ago, the mechanisms explaining its biological function still need to be further explored. Cell wall stability through borate crosslinking of apiosyl residues of rhamnogalacturonan II (RGII) is demonstrated. However, the plethora of symptoms associated with B deficiency in plants together with the defects observed in animal development when B is absent point to a B function beyond the cell wall. The discovery of glycoproteins and glycolipids as putative B-ligands, as well as other molecules such as ribonucleotides and inositides, open new scenarios in which B would not only act by stabilizing the wall structure but also by keeping the function and dynamics of cell membranes and cell signaling during development.  View this paper
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Article
Comparison of Soil Bacterial Communities under Canopies of Pinus tabulaeformis and Populus euramericana in a Reclaimed Waste Dump
Plants 2023, 12(4), 974; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040974 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 639
Abstract
To compare the effects of different remediation tree species on soil bacterial communities and provide a theoretical basis for the selection of ecosystem function promotion strategies after vegetation restoration, the characteristic changes in soil bacterial communities after Pinus tabulaeformis and Populus euramericana reclamation [...] Read more.
To compare the effects of different remediation tree species on soil bacterial communities and provide a theoretical basis for the selection of ecosystem function promotion strategies after vegetation restoration, the characteristic changes in soil bacterial communities after Pinus tabulaeformis and Populus euramericana reclamation were explored using high-throughput sequencing and molecular ecological network methods. The results showed that: (1) With the increase in reclamation years, the reclaimed soil properties were close to the control group, and the soil properties of Pinus tabulaeformis were closer to the control group than those of P. euramericana. (2) The dominant bacteria under the canopies of P. tabulaeformis and P. euramericana was the same. Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, Acidobacteria, Chloroflexi, Gemmatimonadetes, Planctomycetes, Bacteroidetes, and Cyanobacteria were the dominant bacteria in the restored soil, accounting for more than 95% of the total abundance. The average values of the Shannon diversity index, Simpson diversity index, Chao 1 richness estimator, and abundance-based coverage estimator of the bacterial community in the P. euramericana reclaimed soil were higher than those in the P. tabulaeformis reclaimed soil. The influence of reclamation years on the bacterial community of samples is greater than that of species types. (3) The results of ecological network construction showed that the total number of nodes, total number of connections, and average connectivity of the soil bacterial network under P. euramericana reclamation were greater than those under P. tabulaeformis reclamation. The bacterial molecular ecological network under P. euramericana was more abundant. (4) Among the dominant bacteria, the relative abundance of Actinobacteria was negatively correlated with soil pH, soil total nitrogen content, and the activities of urease, invertase, and alkaline phosphatase, while the relative abundance of Proteobacteria and Bacteroidetes was positively correlated with these environmental factors. The relationship between the soil bacterial community of P. tabulaeformis and P. euramericana and the environmental factors is not completely the same, and even the interaction between some environmental factors and bacteria is opposite. Full article
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Article
Disentangling Relationships among the Alpine Species of Luzula Sect. Luzula (Juncaceae) in the Eastern Alps
Plants 2023, 12(4), 973; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040973 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 402
Abstract
Polyploidisation, agmatoploidy and symploidy have driven the diversification of Luzula sect. Luzula. Several morphologically very similar species with different karyotypes have evolved, but their evolutionary origins and relationships are unknown. In this study, we used a combination of relative genome size and [...] Read more.
Polyploidisation, agmatoploidy and symploidy have driven the diversification of Luzula sect. Luzula. Several morphologically very similar species with different karyotypes have evolved, but their evolutionary origins and relationships are unknown. In this study, we used a combination of relative genome size and karyotype estimations as well amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) fingerprinting to investigate the relationships among predominately (sub)alpine Luzula alpina, L. exspectata, L multiflora and L. sudetica in the Eastern Alps, including also some samples of L. campestris and L. taurica as outgroup. Our study revealed common co-occurrence of two or three different ploidies (di-, tetra- and hexaploids) at the same localities, and thus also common co-occurrence of different species, of which L. sudetica was morphologically, ecologically and genetically most divergent. Whereas agmatoploid L. exspectata likely originated only once from the Balkan L. taurica, and hexaploid L. multiflora once from tetraploid L. multiflora, the AFLP data suggest multiple origins of tetraploid L. multiflora, from which partly agmatoploid individuals of L. alpina likely originated recurrently by partial fragmentation of the chromosomes. In contrast to common recurrent formation of polyploids in flowering plants, populations of agmatoploids resulting by fission of complete chromosome sets appear to have single origins, whereas partial agmatoploids are formed recurrently. Whether this is a general pattern in Luzula sect. Luzula, and whether segregation of ecological niches supports the frequent co-occurrence of closely related cytotypes in mixed populations, remains the subject of ongoing research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Systematics, Evolution and Biogeography of Mountain Plants)
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Article
Comparison of the Allelopathic Potential of Non-Native and Native Species of Mediterranean Ecosystems
Plants 2023, 12(4), 972; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040972 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 334
Abstract
Allelopathy is a frequent interaction between species in Mediterranean ecosystems and it is also one of the proposed strategies to explain the colonisation of invasive species. To confirm the importance of allelopathic potential as a mechanism of invasion of non-native species in Mediterranean [...] Read more.
Allelopathy is a frequent interaction between species in Mediterranean ecosystems and it is also one of the proposed strategies to explain the colonisation of invasive species. To confirm the importance of allelopathic potential as a mechanism of invasion of non-native species in Mediterranean ecosystems, it would be advisable to compare the allelopathic effects of non-native plants with native plants on the same target species and thus avoid overestimating the role of phytotoxicity in the invasion process. The main objective of this work was to compare the allelopathic activity of native species typical of Mediterranean ecosystems, classified as allelopathic, with the allelopathic activity of non-native species that may have an invasive character in these ecosystems. To this end, we selected three native species (Cistus ladanifer, Pistacia lentiscus, and Pistacia terebithus) and three non-native species (Acacia dealbata, Acer negundo, and Salix babylonica), and we analysed their effect on the species Lactuca sativa and the native species Lavandula stoechas and Echium plantagineum. The tests on L. sativa showed that all species have allelopathic activity. The tests on L. stoechas and E. plantagineum revealed that P. terebinthus exerted the greatest effect, being the only species that maintained an inhibitory effect at extract concentrations of 50% and 25% in all the analysed parameters, except in germination and cotyledon emergence for E. plantagineum. There were no significant differences in the effect on germination between non-native and native species, although significant differences were found in the effect on root size in the three analysed concentrations, with the native species producing greater inhibition. In conclusion, these species exert a negative effect on the selected native target species, but the negative effect of the native species is greater than that of the non-native species. These results indicate that it is important to compare the allelopathic effects of invasive and native species to correctly estimate the phytotoxic effect of invasive species on their invasiveness Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Ecology)
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Brief Report
First Report of Colletotrichum fructicola Causing Fruit Rot and Leaf-Tip Dieback on Pineapple in Northern Thailand
Plants 2023, 12(4), 971; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040971 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 513
Abstract
Pineapple is one of the most economically important fruits in tropical countries, particularly in Thailand. Canned pineapple is currently Thailand’s main exported commodity to many countries, including the United States, Russia, Germany, Poland, and Japan. Fungal diseases are considered a permanent threat to [...] Read more.
Pineapple is one of the most economically important fruits in tropical countries, particularly in Thailand. Canned pineapple is currently Thailand’s main exported commodity to many countries, including the United States, Russia, Germany, Poland, and Japan. Fungal diseases are considered a permanent threat to fruits in the pre- and post-harvest stages, leading to considerable economic losses. Fungal disease is one of the primary causes of massive yield losses in pineapples around the world. Colletotrichum species are the most common fungal pathogens affecting different tropical fruits. Although there are many reports regarding Colletotrichum species associated with pineapple, they do not have molecular data to confirm species identification. However, the occurrence of Colletotrichum species on pineapple has not been reported in Thailand so far. In this study, we isolated and identified Colletotrichum fructicola on pineapple in northern Thailand and have proven its pathogenicity to the host. This is the first report of the occurrence of Colletotrichum in pineapple, based on morpho-molecular approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Research of Plant Fungal Disease)
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Article
Natural Melanogenesis Inhibitor, Antioxidant, and Collagen Biosynthesis Stimulator of Phytochemicals in Rice Bran and Husk Extracts from Purple Glutinous Rice (Oryza sativa L. cv. Pieisu 1 CMU) for Cosmetic Application
Plants 2023, 12(4), 970; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040970 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 526
Abstract
Oryza sativa L. cv. Pieisu 1 CMU (PES1CMU) has a high anthocyanin content in the colored bran and high phenolic content in the husk. Biologically active compounds in plants are available as dietary supplements and cosmetics. To expand the utilization of natural resources, [...] Read more.
Oryza sativa L. cv. Pieisu 1 CMU (PES1CMU) has a high anthocyanin content in the colored bran and high phenolic content in the husk. Biologically active compounds in plants are available as dietary supplements and cosmetics. To expand the utilization of natural resources, PES1CMU will be a natural remedy for skin hyperpigmentation and aging. Cell-free tyrosinase inhibition and scavenging assays were used to screen all extracts, including PES1CMU-rice bran oil (RBO), PES1CMU-defatted rice bran (DFRB), and PES1CMU-husk (H). PES1CMU extracts were first examined in IBMX-stimulated B16 cells and H2O2-induced fibroblasts. The results exhibited that PES1CMU-DFRB was the most effective inhibitor of mushroom tyrosinase, intracellular melanin production (fold change of 1.11 ± 0.01), and tyrosinase activity (fold change of 1.22 ± 0.10) in IBMX-stimulated B16 cells. Particularly, PES1CMU-DFRB showed a comparable whitening effect to the standard arbutin with no significant difference (p > 0.05). Moreover, PES1CMU-DFRB and PES1CMU-H demonstrated strong scavenging activities. After accelerated cell aging caused by H2O2 exposure in fibroblasts, the levels of malondialdehyde production in all PES1CMU-treated fibroblasts were comparable with those of standard l-ascorbic acid (p > 0.05). Besides, PES1CMU-DFRB and PES1CMU-H treatment significantly inhibited collagen degradation against MMP-2 compared to l-ascorbic acid-treated cells (p > 0.05). PES1CMU rice-processing wastes (DFRB and H) could become potential natural sources for dermatocosmetic constituents in skin anti-aging and whitening products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Resources of Medicinal and Cosmetic Plants Volume II)
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Article
Changes in Plant and Grain Quality of Winter Oat (Avena sativa L.) Varieties in Response to Silicon and Sulphur Foliar Fertilisation under Abiotic Stress Conditions
Plants 2023, 12(4), 969; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040969 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 498
Abstract
In order to investigate the abiotic stress (drought) tolerance of oat (Avena sativa L.) with silicon and sulphur foliar fertilisation treatments, and monitor the effect of the treatments on the physiology, production, stress tolerance, plant, and grain quality of winter oat varieties, [...] Read more.
In order to investigate the abiotic stress (drought) tolerance of oat (Avena sativa L.) with silicon and sulphur foliar fertilisation treatments, and monitor the effect of the treatments on the physiology, production, stress tolerance, plant, and grain quality of winter oat varieties, a field experiment was conducted in the growing season of 2020–2021. As a continuation of our article, published in another Special Issue of Plants, in this publication we evaluate the effect of silicon and sulphur treatments on the quality of winter oats. The whole grain sulphur content was significantly different between varieties. The foliar fertiliser treatments caused greater differences in both the carbon and nitrogen, and sulphur contents in the green plant samples, compared to the differences measured in the grain. Foliar treatments had a significant effect on the sulphur content of both plant samples and grains. Significant differences in the Al, Ba, Ca, Cu, Fe, K, Mn, Mo, Na, Ni, P, Pb, Sr, and Zn contents of oat grains were measured, both between treatments and between varieties. Winter oat varieties did not respond equally to the foliar fertiliser treatments in terms of either macronutrient or micronutrient content. When P, K, Ca, Mg, and S were summarised, the highest values were in the control plots. Significant differences in protein content were identified between winter oat varieties in response to the treatments, but the varieties did not respond in the same way to different foliar fertiliser treatments. Based on our results, we recommend the use of foliar fertilisation in oats in drought-prone areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Oat Resistance Breeding)
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Article
Coconut Callus Initiation for Cell Suspension Culture
Plants 2023, 12(4), 968; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040968 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 515
Abstract
The development of a cell suspension culture system for the scaling up of coconut embryogenic callus (EC) production would drastically improve efforts to achieve the large-scale production of high-quality clonal plantlets. To date, the hard nature of coconut EC appeared to be the [...] Read more.
The development of a cell suspension culture system for the scaling up of coconut embryogenic callus (EC) production would drastically improve efforts to achieve the large-scale production of high-quality clonal plantlets. To date, the hard nature of coconut EC appeared to be the main constraint for developing cell suspension cultures. Hence, this study attempted to acquire friable EC through the following approaches: The manipulation of (1) medium type and subculture frequency, (2) a reduced 2,4-dichlorophenoxy acetic acid concentration during subculture, (3) the nitrate level and the ammonium-to-nitrate ratio, and the addition of amino acid mixture, (4) the addition of L-proline, and (5) the reduction of medium nutrients. Unfortunately, none of these culture conditions produced friable coconut EC. Even though friable EC was not achieved via these approaches, some of the conditions were found to influence the formation of compact EC, therefore these results are important for further studies focused on somatic embryogenesis in coconut and other species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances and Applications in Plant Tissue Culture)
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Article
Classification of Vascular Plants in Vietnam According to Modern Classification Systems
Plants 2023, 12(4), 967; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040967 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 420
Abstract
Vietnam is extremely rich in biodiversity, with a remarkable range of habitats and more than 13,500 species of vascular plants recorded for the flora of Vietnam. This number represents about 3 to 5% of the world’s diversity of vascular plants. Over the past [...] Read more.
Vietnam is extremely rich in biodiversity, with a remarkable range of habitats and more than 13,500 species of vascular plants recorded for the flora of Vietnam. This number represents about 3 to 5% of the world’s diversity of vascular plants. Over the past 30 years, there were two important documents on the vascular plants of Vietnam published, An Illustrated Flora of Vietnam (IFV) and Checklist of Plant Species of Vietnam (CPSV). During the past half century, the advent of molecular phylogenetics has witnessed dramatic changes in the classifications of vascular plants, and some modern classification systems of vascular plants have been established, e.g., PPG I, GPG, and APG. However, the vascular plants of Vietnam have not yet been classified according to these modern classification systems. In this paper, we present the history of the classification of vascular plants in Vietnam, compare the circumscription of all families of vascular plants occurring within Vietnam in IFV, CPSV, and the modern classification systems when applicable, and summarize familial assignments of all controversial genera in the different classifications. Furthermore, we also arrange the 37 families of lycophytes and ferns occurring within Vietnam according to the latest classification system (PPG I) and the 8 families of gymnosperms according to the latest Christenhusz’s system (GPG). The 246 families of angiosperms are arranged according to the fourth edition of the latest Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (APG IV). These results are the foundation stones and would be helpful for future research on the flora of Vietnam and the arrangement of plant collections in Vietnamese herbaria based on the updated classifications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mapping Asia Plants)
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Article
Soil Fungistasis against Fusarium Graminearum under Different tillage Systems
Plants 2023, 12(4), 966; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040966 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 347
Abstract
The establishment of the harmful pathogen Fusarium graminearum in different agroecosystems may strongly depend on the ability of the soils to suppress its development and survival. This study aimed to evaluate the influence of different soil tillage systems (i.e., conventional tillage, reduced tillage [...] Read more.
The establishment of the harmful pathogen Fusarium graminearum in different agroecosystems may strongly depend on the ability of the soils to suppress its development and survival. This study aimed to evaluate the influence of different soil tillage systems (i.e., conventional tillage, reduced tillage and no-tillage) on soil fungistasis against F. graminearum. Soil samples were collected three times during the plant growing season in 2016 and 2017 from a long-term, 20-year soil tillage experiment. The F. graminearum in the soil samples was quantified by real-time qPCR. The soil fungistasis was evaluated by the reduction in the radial growth of F. graminearum in an in vitro assay. The antagonistic activity of the soil bacteria was tested using the dual culture method. The F. graminearum DNA contents in the soils were negatively correlated with soil fungistasis (r = –0.649 *). F. graminearum growth on the unfumigated soil was reduced by 70–87% compared to the chloroform fumigated soil. After the plant vegetation renewal, the soil fungistasis intensity was higher in the conventionally tilled fields than in the no-tillage. However, no significant differences were obtained among the tillage treatments at the mid-plant growth stage and after harvesting. 23 out of 104 bacteria isolated from the soil had a moderate effect, and only 1 had a strong inhibitory effect on the growth of F. graminearum. This bacterium was assigned 100% similarity to the Bacillus amyloliquefaciens Hy7 strain (gene bank no: JN382250) according to the sequence of the 16S ribosome subunit coding gene. The results of our study suggest that the presence of F. graminearum in soil is suppressed by soil fungistasis; however, the role of tillage is influenced by other factors, such as soil biological activity, type and quantity of plant residues and environmental conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Plant Protection)
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Article
Classifying Circumnutation in Pea Plants via Supervised Machine Learning
Plants 2023, 12(4), 965; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040965 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 548
Abstract
Climbing plants require an external support to grow vertically and enhance light acquisition. Climbers that find a suitable support demonstrate greater performance and fitness than those that remain prostrate. Support search is characterized by oscillatory movements (i.e., circumnutation), in which plants rotate around [...] Read more.
Climbing plants require an external support to grow vertically and enhance light acquisition. Climbers that find a suitable support demonstrate greater performance and fitness than those that remain prostrate. Support search is characterized by oscillatory movements (i.e., circumnutation), in which plants rotate around a central axis during their growth. Numerous studies have elucidated the mechanistic details of circumnutation, but how this phenomenon is controlled during support searching remains unclear. To fill this gap, here we tested whether simulation-based machine learning methods can capture differences in movement patterns nested in actual kinematical data. We compared machine learning classifiers with the aim of generating models that learn to discriminate between circumnutation patterns related to the presence/absence of a support in the environment. Results indicate that there is a difference in the pattern of circumnutation, depending on the presence of a support, that can be learned and classified rather accurately. We also identify distinctive kinematic features at the level of the junction underneath the tendrils that seems to be a superior indicator for discerning the presence/absence of the support by the plant. Overall, machine learning approaches appear to be powerful tools for understanding the movement of plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Signaling, Behavior and Communication)
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Article
Effects of the Ratio of Substituting Mineral Fertilizers with Manure Nitrogen on Soil Properties and Vegetable Yields in China: A Meta-Analysis
Plants 2023, 12(4), 964; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040964 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 382
Abstract
Substituting mineral fertilizers (MFs) with manure nitrogen (N) can not only reduce environmental pollution, but also improve soil quality. However, the effects of various manure N substitution ratios (SRs, the ratio of manure N over total N applied) on soil properties and vegetable [...] Read more.
Substituting mineral fertilizers (MFs) with manure nitrogen (N) can not only reduce environmental pollution, but also improve soil quality. However, the effects of various manure N substitution ratios (SRs, the ratio of manure N over total N applied) on soil properties and vegetable yields in China are poorly studied. Here, through a meta-analysis of 667 observations, we assessed the effects of three manure N SRs (low (SR ≤ 35%), medium (35% < SR ≤ 70%), and high (SR > 70%)) on vegetable yields and soil properties (soil organic carbon, SOC; soil total nitrogen, STN; microbial biomass carbon (C) and nitrogen (N), MBC/N; and available phosphorus and potassium, (AP/AK)) in the 0–20 cm soil under different climatic conditions, initial soil properties, and management practices. The results show that the SOC and STN contents increased by 28.5% and 21.9%, respectively, under the medium SRs compared to the MF, which were the highest among the three SRs. Both soil MBC and MBN increased with the increase in the SRs, and the increased ratios in the high SRs reached 203.4% and 119.3%, respectively. In addition, the AP also increased with the increase in the SR, but the AK was not significantly changed with the low and medium SRs compared with the MF. Overall, the medium SR produced the highest vegetable yield among the three SRs with an increase of 18.6%. Additionally, a random forest analysis indicated that the N application rate, planting years, and mean annual precipitation were the most important factors influencing vegetable yield. In conclusion, the SR of 35–70% is more conducive to increasing soil nutrient contents significantly and improves vegetable yields in Chinese vegetable fields. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water and Nitrogen Management in Soil-Crop System)
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Article
Antimalarial and Cytotoxic Activity of Native Plants Used in Cabo Verde Traditional Medicine
Plants 2023, 12(4), 963; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040963 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 509
Abstract
Medicinal plants have historically been a source of drugs in multiple applications, including the treatment of malaria infections. The Cabo Verde archipelago harbors a rich diversity of native plants, most of which are used for medicinal purposes. The present study investigated the in [...] Read more.
Medicinal plants have historically been a source of drugs in multiple applications, including the treatment of malaria infections. The Cabo Verde archipelago harbors a rich diversity of native plants, most of which are used for medicinal purposes. The present study investigated the in vitro antiplasmodial activities of four native plants from Cabo Verde (i.e., Artemisia gorgonum, Lavandula rotundifolia, Sideroxylon marginatum, and Tamarix senegalensis). Traditional preparations of these medicinal plants, namely aqueous extracts (infusions) and ethanolic extracts, were tested against both chloroquine-sensitive (3D7) and chloroquine-resistant (Dd2) Plasmodium falciparum strains using the SYBR Green detection method. The in vitro cytotoxicity was evaluated in Caco-2 and PLP2 cells using a sulforhodamine B colorimetric assay. An ethanolic extract of A. gorgonum and infusions of T. senegalensis exhibited high antiplasmodial activities (EC50 < 5 μg/mL) without cytotoxicity (GI50 > 400 μg/mL). Extracts of L. rotundifolia and S. marginatum exhibited moderate activities, with EC50 values ranging from 10–30 μg/mL. The A. gorgonum ethanolic extract showed activity toward early ring stages, and parasites treated with the T. senegalensis infusions progressed to the early trophozoite stage, although did not develop further to the late trophozoite or schizont stages. Antimalarial activities and the lack of cytotoxicity of the extracts are reported in the present study and support previous claims by traditional practitioners for the use of these plants against malaria while suggesting their ethnopharmacological usefulness as future antimalarials. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Medicinal Plants and Their Marker Compounds)
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Article
The Hybridization Barrier between Herbaceous Medicago sativa and Woody M. arborea Is Weakened by Reproductive Abnormalities in M. sativa Seed Parents
Plants 2023, 12(4), 962; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040962 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 276
Abstract
Historically, crosses between Medicago sativa (alfalfa) and M. arborea with alfalfa as the seed parent failed, as did crosses using M. arborea as the seed parent. Thus, a reproductive barrier kept the two species isolated until early in this century. The breakthrough came [...] Read more.
Historically, crosses between Medicago sativa (alfalfa) and M. arborea with alfalfa as the seed parent failed, as did crosses using M. arborea as the seed parent. Thus, a reproductive barrier kept the two species isolated until early in this century. The breakthrough came when alfalfa seed parents were identified in Wisconsin USA and Queensland AU that produced partial hybrids (hereafter hybrids). The hybrids were obtained by making large numbers of crosses on selected alfalfa parents. This was the first level of weakening the crossing barrier as reported in Plants in 2013. Further weakening of the barrier is reported herein whereby more hybrids were obtained with fewer crosses. This was accomplished by pedigree selection for new alfalfa seed parents and by using a product of the first hybrids called Alborea. New alfalfa seed parents were crossed with M. arborea, and Alborea parents were backcrossed to M. arborea. Hybrid plants were produced with fewer crosses in both cases. These hybrids, like the first hybrids, have mostly alfalfa traits but also have traits from M. arborea. It was theorized early on that the alfalfa component could be explained by 2n eggs in the alfalfa parents that were fertilized by normal n gametes from M. arborea. Evidence that the Wisconsin alfalfa and Alborea seed parents did in fact produce 2n eggs was reported in Plants in 2022. Moreover, they produced 2n eggs at approximately the same frequency that they produced hybrids. As reported herein, Alborea parents produced the highest frequency of hybrids and thus had the weakest barrier. Importantly, they also have the highest frequency of 2n eggs. It was determined that alfalfa and Alborea parents that produce 2n eggs and hybrids, also produce 2n pollen. In effect, an experiment was undertaken in reverse showing that 2n pollen could be used to screen for plants that produce hybrids. In the thousands of crosses made over the years, fertilization of normal n eggs in alfalfa parents always failed. Normal meiosis appears to be the main barrier to producing interspecific hybrids in our case. Fertilization of abnormal 2n eggs ensures sufficient alfalfa genetic material to continue embryogenesis. Evidently, the meiotic abnormality of 2n eggs is the major factor that weakens the crossing barrier. Full article
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Article
Ionomic Parameters of Populations of Common Juniper (Juniperus communis L.) Depending on the Habitat Type
Plants 2023, 12(4), 961; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040961 - 20 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 394
Abstract
For the study of the ionomic parameters of Juniperus communis needles, fourteen sites covering most of the territory of Lithuania and belonging to distinct habitats (coastal brown dunes covered with natural Scots pine forests (G), Juniperus communis scrubs (F), transition mires and quaking [...] Read more.
For the study of the ionomic parameters of Juniperus communis needles, fourteen sites covering most of the territory of Lithuania and belonging to distinct habitats (coastal brown dunes covered with natural Scots pine forests (G), Juniperus communis scrubs (F), transition mires and quaking bogs (D), subcontinental moss Scots pine forests (G), and xero-thermophile fringes) were selected. Concentrations of macro-, micro-, and non-essential elements were analyzed in current-year needles, sampled in September. According to the concentrations of elements in J. communis needles, the differences between the most contrasting populations were as follows: up to 2-fold for Mg, N, K, Ca, and Zn; 2- to 7-fold for P, Na, Fe, Cu, Al, Cr, Ni, and Pb; and 26- to 31-fold for Mn and Cd. The concentrations of Cd, Cr, and Ni in needles of J. communis did not reach levels harmful for conifers. When compared to all other habitats (B, F, G, and E), the populations from transition mires and quaking bogs (D) had significantly lower concentrations of main nutritional elements N (12176 µg/g d. m.), P (1054 µg/g d. m.), and K (2916 µg/g d. m.). In Juniperus communis scrubs (F), a habitat protected by EUNIS, the concentration of K in the needles was highest, while Zn and Cu concentrations were the lowest. Principal component (PC) analyses using concentrations of 15 elements as variables for the discrimination of populations or habitats allowed authors to distinguish F and B habitats from the E habitat (PC1) and F and D habitats from the G habitat (PC2). Discriminating between populations, the most important variables were concentrations of P, N, Mg, Ca, Cu, and K. Discriminating between habitats, the important variables were concentrations of N and P. Full article
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Article
GC-MS Analysis of Bioactive Compounds Extracted from Plant Rhazya stricta Using Various Solvents
Plants 2023, 12(4), 960; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040960 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 600
Abstract
Worldwide, human beings have traditionally employed many folkloric herbal resources as complementary and alternative remedies, and these remedies have played a pivotal role in modern medicines for many decades, as scientists have used them to develop drugs. We studied the effects of employing [...] Read more.
Worldwide, human beings have traditionally employed many folkloric herbal resources as complementary and alternative remedies, and these remedies have played a pivotal role in modern medicines for many decades, as scientists have used them to develop drugs. We studied the effects of employing solvents with varying polarity on the yields of phytochemical components extracted from the plant Rhazya stricta. We used chloroform–methanol (1:1), methanol, ethanol, diethyl ether, and ethyl acetate as extraction solvents. The results showed that the efficiencies of the solvents at extracting phytochemical compounds were in this order: chloroform–methanol < ethanol < methanol < diethyl ether < ethyl acetate extract. The chloroform–methanol extract produced the highest concentration of phenolic and flavonoid contents among the five solvents tested (13.3 mg GAE/g DM and 5.43 CE/g DM). The yields of the extracted phytochemical compounds ranged from 47.55 to 6.05%. The results revealed that the properties of the extraction solvents considerably impacted the extraction yield and the phytochemical components of the R. stricta extract. Furthermore, compared with the other solvents, the chloroform–methanol extraction led to the highest yield (47.55%) and to more phytochemical substances being extracted. The aim of this study is to investigate the phytochemical compounds extracted from R. stricta with different solvents that have different polarities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Therapeutics 2.0)
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Article
Suppression of Seedling Survival and Recruitment of the Invasive Tree Prosopis juliflora in Saudi Arabia through Its Own Leaf Litter: Greenhouse and Field Assessments
Plants 2023, 12(4), 959; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040959 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 327
Abstract
Many studies have focused on how leaf litter depth affects seed germination and seedling growth because the seedling stage is the most vulnerable portion of a plant’s life cycle. Invasive plants with the most severe ecological consequences are those that modify ecosystems, and [...] Read more.
Many studies have focused on how leaf litter depth affects seed germination and seedling growth because the seedling stage is the most vulnerable portion of a plant’s life cycle. Invasive plants with the most severe ecological consequences are those that modify ecosystems, and this can occur through the formation of thick litter layers which can suppress the emergence, survival, and recruitment of native plant seedlings; in addition, in some cases, these litter layers can suppress invasive plant seedling recruitment. Prosopis juliflora is a thorny shrub that is native to arid and semi-arid portions of North America, parts of South America, and the Caribbean. It has invaded millions of hectares around the world, including Saudi Arabia. The objective of this study is to evaluate whether P. juliflora leaf litter reduces the recruitment of its own seedlings under greenhouse and field conditions in Saudi Arabia. In both the greenhouse and the field, the number of days to first emergence increased and germination percentage decreased with increasing litter depth. With the 1, 2, and 4 cm litter depth treatments, the number of viable seeds generally decreased, with no emergence, germination, or viable seeds detected for the 8 cm litter depth treatment. Results of this study reveal that increasing the depth of P. juliflora leaf litter suppresses the survival and recruitment of its own seedlings. Future search should assess the actual mechanisms through which P. juliflora seeds are suppressed, the role of allelopathic compounds in this process, and whether viable seeds are dormant and will persist in the soil seed bank. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Invasion Ecology)
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Article
Trichoderma asperellum L. Coupled the Effects of Biochar to Enhance the Growth and Physiology of Contrasting Maize Cultivars under Copper and Nickel Stresses
Plants 2023, 12(4), 958; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040958 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 414
Abstract
Crop cultivation in heavy metal (HM)-polluted soils is a routine practice in developing countries that causes multiple human health consequences. Hence, two independent studies have been performed to investigate the efficiency of rice husk biochar (BC) and three fungal species, Trichoderma harzianum (F1), [...] Read more.
Crop cultivation in heavy metal (HM)-polluted soils is a routine practice in developing countries that causes multiple human health consequences. Hence, two independent studies have been performed to investigate the efficiency of rice husk biochar (BC) and three fungal species, Trichoderma harzianum (F1), Trichoderma asperellum (F2) and Trichoderma viride (F3), to improve the growth and physiology of Zea mays L. plants grown on soil contaminated with Cu and Ni. Initially, a biosorption trial was conducted to test the HM removal efficiency of species F1, F2 and F3. Among them, F2 sp. showed the maximum Cu and Ni removal efficiency. Then, a pot study was conducted with two cultivars (spring corn and footer corn) having eleven treatments with three replicates. The results demonstrated a significant genotypic variation among both cultivars under applied HM stress. The maximum decreases in leaf Chl a. (53%), Chl b. (84%) and protein (63%) were reported in footer corn with applied Cu stress. The combined application of biochar and F2 increased leaf CAT (96%) in spring corn relative to Cu stress. Altogether, it was found that BC + F2 treatment showed the maximum efficiency in combatting Cu and Ni stress in spring corn. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant-Microbes Interactions in the Context of Abiotic Stress)
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Article
Application of Grafting Method in Resistance Identification of Sweet Potato Virus Disease and Resistance Evaluation of Elite Sweet Potato [Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam] Varieties
Plants 2023, 12(4), 957; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040957 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 471
Abstract
Sweet potato virus disease (SPVD) is one of the main virus diseases in sweet potato [Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam] that seriously affects the yield of sweet potato. Therefore, the establishment of a simple, rapid and effective method to detect SPVD is of [...] Read more.
Sweet potato virus disease (SPVD) is one of the main virus diseases in sweet potato [Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam] that seriously affects the yield of sweet potato. Therefore, the establishment of a simple, rapid and effective method to detect SPVD is of great significance for the early warning and prevention of this disease. In this study, the experiment was carried out in two years to compare the grafting method and side grafting method for three sweet potato varieties, and the optimal grafting method was selected. After grafting with seedlings infected with SPVD, the symptomatic diagnosis and serological detection were performed in 86 host varieties, and the differences in SPVD resistance were determined by fluorescence quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR) and nitrocellulose membrane enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (NCM-ELISA). The results showed that the survival rate of grafting by insertion method was significantly higher than that by side grafting method, and the disease resistance of different varieties to sweet potato virus disease was tested. The detection method established in this study can provide theoretical basis for identification and screening of resistant sweet potato varieties. Full article
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Article
Identification and Characterization of Fusarium Species Causing Watermelon Fruit Rot in Northern Thailand
Plants 2023, 12(4), 956; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040956 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 458
Abstract
Fruit rot caused by phytopathogenic fungi is one of the major diseases affecting watermelons (Citrullus lanatus) around the world, which can result in unmarketable fruits and significant economic losses. Fruit rot was observed on watermelons throughout the postharvest storage periods in [...] Read more.
Fruit rot caused by phytopathogenic fungi is one of the major diseases affecting watermelons (Citrullus lanatus) around the world, which can result in unmarketable fruits and significant economic losses. Fruit rot was observed on watermelons throughout the postharvest storage periods in Phayao Province, northern Thailand in 2022. For the present study, a total of ten fungal isolates were isolated from the rot lesions of watermelons. All obtained fungal isolates were then characterized in terms of their pathogenicity. The results indicated that only four fungal isolates caused rot disease with similar symptoms during the postharvest storage period. Based on their morphological characteristics, these four fungal isolates were identified as belonging to the genus Fusarium. Using multi-gene phylogenetic analyses with a combination of the translation elongation factor 1-alpha (tef-1), calmodulin (cam), and RNA polymerase second largest subunit (rpb2) genes, the fungal isolates were subsequently identified as Fusarium compactum and F. paranaense. Taken together, the results of this study indicate that F. compactum and F. paranaense cause fruit rot disease in watermelons. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to report F. compactum and F. paranaense as novel pathogens of watermelon fruit rot both in Thailand and elsewhere in the world. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fungus and Plant Interactions)
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Article
The High-Elevation Peatlands of the Northern Andes, Colombia
Plants 2023, 12(4), 955; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040955 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 423
Abstract
Andean peatlands are important carbon reservoirs for countries in the northern Andes and have a unique diversity. Peatland plant diversity is generally related to hydrology and water chemistry, and the response of the vegetation in tropical high-elevation peatlands to changes in elevation, climate, [...] Read more.
Andean peatlands are important carbon reservoirs for countries in the northern Andes and have a unique diversity. Peatland plant diversity is generally related to hydrology and water chemistry, and the response of the vegetation in tropical high-elevation peatlands to changes in elevation, climate, and disturbance is poorly understood. Here, we address the questions of what the main vegetation types of peat-forming vegetation in the northern Andes are, and how the different vegetation types are related to water chemistry and pH. We measured plant diversity in 121 peatlands. We identified a total of 264 species, including 124 bryophytes and 140 vascular plants. We differentiated five main vegetation types: cushion plants, Sphagnum, true mosses, sedges, and grasses. Cushion-dominated peatlands are restricted to elevations above 4000 m. Variation in peatland vegetation is mostly driven be elevation and water chemistry. Encroachment of sedges and Sphagnum sancto-josephense in disturbed sites was associated with a reduction in soil carbon. We conclude that peatland variation is driven first by elevation and climate followed by water chemistry and human disturbances. Sites with higher human disturbances had lower carbon content. Peat-forming vegetation in the northern Andes was unique to each site bringing challenges on how to better conserve them and the ecosystem services they offer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Plant Ecology)
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Review
Contribution of Biofertilizers to Pulse Crops: From Single-Strain Inoculants to New Technologies Based on Microbiomes Strategies
Plants 2023, 12(4), 954; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040954 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 678
Abstract
Pulses provide distinct health benefits due to their low fat content and high protein and fiber contents. Their grain production reaches approximately 93,210 × 103 tons per year. Pulses benefit from the symbiosis with atmospheric N2-fixing bacteria, which increases productivity [...] Read more.
Pulses provide distinct health benefits due to their low fat content and high protein and fiber contents. Their grain production reaches approximately 93,210 × 103 tons per year. Pulses benefit from the symbiosis with atmospheric N2-fixing bacteria, which increases productivity and reduces the need for N fertilizers, thus contributing to mitigation of environmental impact mitigation. Additionally, the root region harbors a rich microbial community with multiple traits related to plant growth promotion, such as nutrient increase and tolerance enhancement to abiotic or biotic stresses. We reviewed the eight most common pulses accounting for almost 90% of world production: common beans, chickpeas, peas, cowpeas, mung beans, lentils, broad beans, and pigeon peas. We focused on updated information considering both single-rhizobial inoculation and co-inoculation with plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria. We found approximately 80 microbial taxa with PGPR traits, mainly Bacillus sp., B. subtilis, Pseudomonas sp., P. fluorescens, and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, and that contributed to improve plant growth and yield under different conditions. In addition, new data on root, nodule, rhizosphere, and seed microbiomes point to strategies that can be used to design new generations of biofertilizers, highlighting the importance of microorganisms for productive pulse systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Interactions between Plants and Soil Microorganisms)
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Article
Influence of Drought and Heat Stress on Mineral Content, Antioxidant Activity and Bioactive Compound Accumulation in Four African Amaranthus Species
Plants 2023, 12(4), 953; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040953 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 451
Abstract
Drought and heat stress is known to influence the accumulation of mineral content, antioxidant activity, phenolics, flavonoids and other bioactive compounds in many tolerant leafy vegetables. Amaranthus plants can tolerate adverse weather conditions, especially drought and heat. Therefore, evaluating the influence of drought [...] Read more.
Drought and heat stress is known to influence the accumulation of mineral content, antioxidant activity, phenolics, flavonoids and other bioactive compounds in many tolerant leafy vegetables. Amaranthus plants can tolerate adverse weather conditions, especially drought and heat. Therefore, evaluating the influence of drought and heat stress on commercially and medically important crop species like Amaranthus is important to grow the crop for optimal nutritional and medicinal properties. This study investigated the influence of drought and heat stress and a combination of both on the accumulation of phenolic and flavonoid compounds and the antioxidant capacity of African Amaranthus caudatus, A. hypochondriacus, A. cruentus and A. spinosus. Phenolic and flavonoid compounds were extracted with methanol and aqueous solvents and were quantified using liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). Caffeic acid was the main phenolic compound identified in aqueous extracts of A. caudatus and A. hypochondriacus. Rutin was the most abundant flavonoid compound in all the Amaranthus species tested, with the highest concentration found in A. caudatus. The results suggest a strong positive, but species and compound-specific effect of drought and heat stress on bioactive compounds accumulation. We concluded that heat stress at 40 °C under well-watered conditions and combined drought and heat stress (at 30 °C and 35 °C) appeared to induce the accumulation of caffeic acid and rutin. Hence, cultivation of these species in semi-arid and arid areas is feasible. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Ecophysiological Adaptation to Environmental Stress)
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Article
Insights into the Bioinformatics and Transcriptional Analysis of the Elongator Complexes (ELPs) Gene Family of Wheat: TaELPs Contribute to Wheat Abiotic Stress Tolerance and Leaf Senescence
Plants 2023, 12(4), 952; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040952 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 485
Abstract
Elongator complexes (ELPs) are the protein complexes that promote transcription through histone acetylation in eukaryotic cells and interact with elongating RNA polymerase II (RNAPII). ELPs’ role in plant growth and development, signal transduction, and response to biotic and abiotic stresses [...] Read more.
Elongator complexes (ELPs) are the protein complexes that promote transcription through histone acetylation in eukaryotic cells and interact with elongating RNA polymerase II (RNAPII). ELPs’ role in plant growth and development, signal transduction, and response to biotic and abiotic stresses have been confirmed in model plants. However, the functions of the wheat ELP genes are not well documented. The present study identified 18 members of the ELPs from the wheat genome with a homology search. Further, bioinformatics and transcription patterns in response to different stress conditions were analyzed to dissect their potential regulatory mechanisms in wheat. Gene duplication analysis showed that 18 pairs of ELP paralogous genes were derived from segmental duplication, which was divided into six clades by protein phylogenetic and cluster analysis. The orthologous analysis of wheat TaELP genes showed that TaELP genes may have evolved from orthologous genes of other plant species or closely related plants. Moreover, a variety of cis-acting regulatory elements (CAREs) related to growth and development, hormone response, and biotic and abiotic stresses were identified in the TaELPs’ promoter regions. The qRT-PCR analysis showed that the transcription of TaELPs was induced under hormone, salt, and drought stress and during leaf senescence. The TaELP2 gene was silenced with BSMV-VIGS, and TaELP2 was preliminarily verified to be involved in the regulation of wheat leaf senescence. Overall, TaELP genes might be regulated by hormone signaling pathways and response to abiotic stress and leaf senescence, which could be investigated further as potential candidate genes for wheat abiotic stress tolerance and yield improvement. Full article
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Article
Effects of Geographical and Climatic Factors on the Intrinsic Water Use Efficiency of Tropical Plants: Evidence from Leaf 13C
Plants 2023, 12(4), 951; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040951 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 425
Abstract
Understanding the water use efficiency (WUE) and adaptation strategies of plants in high-temperature and rainy areas is essential under global climate change. The leaf carbon content (LCC) and intrinsic WUE of 424 plant samples (from 312 plant species) on Hainan Island were measured [...] Read more.
Understanding the water use efficiency (WUE) and adaptation strategies of plants in high-temperature and rainy areas is essential under global climate change. The leaf carbon content (LCC) and intrinsic WUE of 424 plant samples (from 312 plant species) on Hainan Island were measured to examine their relationship with geographical and climatic factors in herbs, trees, vines and ferns. The LCC ranged from 306.30 to 559.20 mg g−1, with an average of 418.85 mg g−1, and decreased with increasing mean annual temperature (MAT). The range of intrinsic WUE was 8.61 to 123.39 μmol mol−1 with an average value of 60.66 μmol mol−1. The intrinsic WUE decreased with increasing altitude and relative humidity (RH) and wind speed (WS), but increased with increasing latitude, MAT and rainy season temperature (RST), indicating that geographical and climatic factors affect the intrinsic WUE. Stepwise regression suggested that in tropical regions with high temperature and humidity, the change in plant intrinsic WUE was mainly driven by WS. In addition, the main factors affecting the intrinsic WUE of different plant functional types of plants are unique, implying that plants of different plant functional types have distinctive adaptive strategies to environmental change. The present study may provide an insight in water management in tropical rainforest. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water and Nitrogen Management in Soil-Crop System)
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Article
Population Growth of Fall Armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda Fed on Cereal and Pulse Host Plants Cultivated in Yunnan Province, China
Plants 2023, 12(4), 950; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040950 - 20 Feb 2023
Viewed by 524
Abstract
The fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda is a major agricultural pest in China, and has migrated from its continuous breeding area to other parts of China. In our study, the biological behaviors of S. frugiperda fed on maize, wheat, barley, faba beans, and soya [...] Read more.
The fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda is a major agricultural pest in China, and has migrated from its continuous breeding area to other parts of China. In our study, the biological behaviors of S. frugiperda fed on maize, wheat, barley, faba beans, and soya beans were evaluated in a growth chamber. Results indicated that maize-fed S. frugiperda larvae performed well, as evidenced by shorter larva-adult periods, adult pre-oviposition period (APOP), total pre-oviposition period (TPOP), and generation time (T), and a higher survival rate, intrinsic (r) and finite (λ) rate of increase, and net reproductive rate (Ro), However, S. frugiperda larvae performed weakly when fed barley and faba bean plants, as indicated by lower survival rates, r, and λ, and longer pre-adult period, TPOP, and T. A heavier pupal weight of both sexes was recorded on faba beans (0.202 g) and a lighter weight on barley (0.169 g). Fecundity was higher when fed faba beans and maize, and lower when fed wheat and barley. Thus, maize was the most optimal and barley was the least optimal host plant, followed by faba beans, for S. frugiperda larvae growth and development. This study enhances our knowledge of S. frugiperda in these host plants and can help in the design of management approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wheat–Pest Interaction: From Biology to Integrated Management)
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Article
Seasonal and Geographic Variation in Alkaloid Content of Kratom (Mitragyna speciosa (Korth.) Havil.) from Thailand
Plants 2023, 12(4), 949; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040949 - 19 Feb 2023
Viewed by 810
Abstract
The objective of this study was to obtain data on the distribution of alkaloids in kratom plants grown in Thailand. Two collections were performed, covering the southern, central, and northern regions of Thailand and different seasons. The contents of alkaloids, including mitragynine (MG), [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to obtain data on the distribution of alkaloids in kratom plants grown in Thailand. Two collections were performed, covering the southern, central, and northern regions of Thailand and different seasons. The contents of alkaloids, including mitragynine (MG), paynantheine (PAY), and speciogynine (SG), were determined using the validated HPLC method. The 134 samples in the first collection were collected from Nam Phu subdistrict, Ban Na San, Surat Thani, Thailand, during June and October 2019 and January 2020. The maximum mitragynine content was 4.94% w/w in June (late summer), and the minimum content was 0.74% w/w in October (rainy season). To expand the study area after kratom decriminalization, 611 samples were collected in June–August 2021, October–December 2021, and January–April 2022. The accumulation of MG ranged from 0.35 to 3.46% w/w, 0.31 to 2.54% w/w, and 0.48 to 2.81% w/w, respectively. The meteorological data supported the climate’s effect on alkaloid production. Soil analysis revealed the importance of Ca and Mg in promoting alkaloid production. Geographical locations played a role in the variation of MG in kratom leaves, but did not affect the color of leaf veins. In conclusion, the present study suggested that the alkaloid content in kratom diverges based on seasonal and geographical origin. Full article
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Article
Comparison of Proanthocyanidin Content in Rabbiteye Blueberry (Vaccinium virgatum Aiton) Leaves and the Promotion of Apoptosis against HL-60 Promyelocytic Leukemia Cells Using ‘Kunisato 35 Gou’ Leaf Extract
Plants 2023, 12(4), 948; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040948 - 19 Feb 2023
Viewed by 584
Abstract
Polyphenol-rich rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium virgatum Aiton) leaves have attracted attention as a food material. In this study, we compared the total polyphenols, total proanthocyanidin content, and antioxidant activity of the leaves of 18 blueberry varieties and investigated the seasonal variation in polyphenols. [...] Read more.
Polyphenol-rich rabbiteye blueberry (Vaccinium virgatum Aiton) leaves have attracted attention as a food material. In this study, we compared the total polyphenols, total proanthocyanidin content, and antioxidant activity of the leaves of 18 blueberry varieties and investigated the seasonal variation in polyphenols. We also evaluated the anti-cancer cell proliferation properties of the rabbiteye blueberry leaf specific cultivar ‘Kunisato 35 Gou’. Rabbiteye blueberry leaves had significantly higher total polyphenol and total proanthocyanidin values than northern highbush blueberry and southern highbush blueberry leaves. The antioxidant activity of blueberry leaves was highly positively correlated with both the total polyphenol and total proanthocyanidin content. Variations were observed in the total polyphenol and total proanthocyanidin content of rabbiteye blueberry leaves harvested at different points in the growing season; leaves collected in fall to winter contained more epicatechin in addition to proanthocyanidins. In the evaluation of anti-cancer cell proliferation properties against HL-60 promyelocytic leukemia cells, the September-harvested extracts of rabbiteye blueberry ‘Kunisato 35 Gou’ showed strong properties, and the use of an FITC Annexin V apoptosis detection kit with propidium iodide confirmed that this HL-60 cell death occurred via apoptosis. Limiting the harvest time would make rabbiteye blueberry leaves a more functional food ingredient. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactivity of Fruits Extracts)
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Article
Phenotypic and Genotypic Characterization of Newly Isolated Xanthomonas euvesicatoria-Specific Bacteriophages and Evaluation of Their Biocontrol Potential
Plants 2023, 12(4), 947; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040947 - 19 Feb 2023
Viewed by 473
Abstract
Bacteriophages have greatly engaged the attention of scientists worldwide due to the continuously increasing resistance of phytopathogenic bacteria to commercially used chemical pesticides. However, the knowledge regarding phages is still very insufficient and must be continuously expanded. This paper presents the results of [...] Read more.
Bacteriophages have greatly engaged the attention of scientists worldwide due to the continuously increasing resistance of phytopathogenic bacteria to commercially used chemical pesticides. However, the knowledge regarding phages is still very insufficient and must be continuously expanded. This paper presents the results of the isolation, characterization, and evaluation of the potential of 11 phage isolates as natural predators of a severe phytopathogenic bacterium—Xanthomonas euvesicatoria. Phages were isolated from the rhizosphere of tomato plants with symptoms of bacterial spot. The plaque morphology of all isolates was determined on a X. euvesicatoria lawn via a plaque assay. Three of the isolates were attributed to the family Myoviridae based on TEM micrographs. All phages showed good long-term viability when stored at 4 °C and −20 °C. Three of the phage isolates possessed high stability at very low pH values. Fifty-five-day persistence in a soil sample without the presence of the specific host and a lack of lytic activity on beneficial rhizosphere bacteria were found for the phage isolate BsXeu269p/3. The complete genome of the same isolate was sequenced and analyzed, and, for the first time in this paper, we report a circular representation of a linear but circularly permuted phage genome among known X. euvesicatoria phage genomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Protection and Biotic Interactions)
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Article
Hydrogen Gas Improves the Postharvest Quality of Lanzhou Lily (Lilium davidii var. unicolor) Bulbs
Plants 2023, 12(4), 946; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040946 - 19 Feb 2023
Viewed by 544
Abstract
Hydrogen gas (H2) is an important molecular messenger in animal and plant cells and is involved in various aspects of plant processes, including root organogenesis induction, stress tolerance and postharvest senescence. This study investigated the effect of H2 fumigation on [...] Read more.
Hydrogen gas (H2) is an important molecular messenger in animal and plant cells and is involved in various aspects of plant processes, including root organogenesis induction, stress tolerance and postharvest senescence. This study investigated the effect of H2 fumigation on the quality of Lanzhou lily scales. The results indicated the H2 remarkably declined the color variation and browning degree in Lanzhou lily scales by suppressing the activity of phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL), peroxidase (POD) and polyphenol oxidase (PPO). Moreover, H2 significantly alleviated the degradation of soluble proteins and soluble sugars in Lanzhou lily scales during postharvest storage, mitigating the decline in nutritional quality. This alleviating effect of H2 might be achieved by increasing the endogenous H2 concentration. Collectively, our data provide new insights into the postharvest quality reduction of Lanzhou lily scales mitigated by H2 fumigation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Postharvest Physiology of Fruit and Vegetables-the Second Edition)
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Article
Leaf Nutrient Status of Commercially Grown Strawberries in Latvia, 2014–2022: A Possible Yield-Limiting Factor
Plants 2023, 12(4), 945; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12040945 - 19 Feb 2023
Viewed by 415
Abstract
The present study was carried out to evaluate the leaf nutrient status of commercially grown strawberries in Latvia during 2014–2022. The results of N, P, K, Ca, Mg, S, Fe, Mn, Zn, Cu, Mo and B in 200 strawberry leaf samples from different [...] Read more.
The present study was carried out to evaluate the leaf nutrient status of commercially grown strawberries in Latvia during 2014–2022. The results of N, P, K, Ca, Mg, S, Fe, Mn, Zn, Cu, Mo and B in 200 strawberry leaf samples from different strawberry-producing farms were analysed over three periods: 2014–2016, 2017–2019, and 2020–2022. According to leaf analyses, plant fertilization was only partly well managed by the growers. During the research period, strawberries in Latvia were generally sufficiently supplied with N, P, K, Mg, Fe, Mn, Mo, and B, while the level of Ca, S, Zn, and Cu was considered low. The deficiency of these nutrients was characteristic for more than 50% of the samples. Since Ca, S, Zn, and Cu are essential for berry formation and quality and contribute to stress resistance; their deficiency could be one of the limiting factors for strawberry yield. The significant positive correlations found between nutrients, including deficient ones, confirmed their close relationship in the uptake process and the importance of sufficient supply. The results clearly indicated that fertilization could currently be an issue that limits the strawberry harvest in Latvia, and adequate provisions of Ca, S, Zn, and B should be the main focus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Nutrition Volume II)
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