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Plants, Volume 9, Issue 11 (November 2020) – 222 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Flower dimorphism is known in many angiosperms. Differences between male and female flowers can appear due to ab initio different flower ground plans in the two flower types or because of different patterns of late development. We studied flower development in three species of Eriocaulon (Eriocaulaceae, Poales) to understand whether organ number and arrangement are stable in E. redactum, a species with corolla reportedly missing in female flowers. Early flower development is similar in all three species. Male and female flowers are indistinguishable in the early stages. Despite earlier reports, both floral types uniformly possess three congenitally united sepals and three petals in E. redactum. Scanning electron microscopy should be used in taxonomic accounts of Eriocaulon to assess organ number and arrangement. View this paper
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Article
Effects of Different Processing Treatments on Almond (Prunus dulcis) Bioactive Compounds, Antioxidant Activities, Fatty Acids, and Sensorial Characteristics
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1627; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111627 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1077
Abstract
Almond is one of the most commonly consumed nuts worldwide, with health benefits associated with availability of bioactive compounds and fatty acids. Almond is often eaten raw or after some processing steps. However, the latter can positively or negatively influence chemical and sensorial [...] Read more.
Almond is one of the most commonly consumed nuts worldwide, with health benefits associated with availability of bioactive compounds and fatty acids. Almond is often eaten raw or after some processing steps. However, the latter can positively or negatively influence chemical and sensorial attributes of almonds. This work was carried out to assess the effects of two processing treatments, namely; roasting and blanching on (i) contents of bioactive compounds, (ii) contents of fatty acids (3) antioxidant activities (4), sensorial characteristics of four neglected Portuguese almond cultivars (Casanova, Molar, Pegarinhos and Refêgo) and two foreign cultivars (Ferragnès and Glorieta). Results showed that in general, levels of bioactive compounds and antioxidant activities increased with roasting and decreased with blanching. Fatty acid profiles of raw kernels of all cultivars were generally identical although Refêgo exhibited a high content of α-linolenic acid. Following roasting and blanching, content of polyunsaturated fatty acids increased while saturated fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids and several health lipid indices decreased. Roasting positively affected perception of skin color and sweetness of Ferragnès and Glorieta as well as skin roughness of Molar and Pegarinhos. Blanching on the other hand led to positive changes in textural properties of Refêgo and Pegarinhos. This study reveals the nutritive benefits of consuming neglected almond cultivars in Portugal, and the novel data reported here could be of interest to growers, processing companies and consumers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quality Evaluation of Plant-Derived Foods)
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Article
Effect of Salinity Stress on Growth and Metabolomic Profiling of Cucumis sativus and Solanum lycopersicum
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1626; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111626 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1283
Abstract
Seeds germination and seedlings growth of Cucumis sativus and Solanum lycopersicum were monitored in in vitro and in vivo experiments after application of different concentrations of NaCl (25, 50, 100 and 200 mM). Photosynthetic pigments content and the biochemical responses of C. sativus [...] Read more.
Seeds germination and seedlings growth of Cucumis sativus and Solanum lycopersicum were monitored in in vitro and in vivo experiments after application of different concentrations of NaCl (25, 50, 100 and 200 mM). Photosynthetic pigments content and the biochemical responses of C. sativus and S. lycopersicum were assessed. Salinity stress slightly delayed the seeds germination rate and significantly reduced the percentage of germination as well as shoot length under the highest salt concentration (200 mM) in cucumber. Furthermore, root length was decreased significantly in all treatments. Whereas, in tomato, a prominent delay in seeds germination rate, the germination percentage and seedlings growth (shoot and root lengths) were significantly influenced under all concentrations of NaCl. Fresh and dry weights were reduced prominently in tomato compared to cucumber. Photosynthetic pigments content was reduced but with pronounced decreasing in tomato compared to cucumber. Secondary metabolites profiling in both plants under stress was varied from tomato to cucumber. The content of saponins, proline and total antioxidant capacity was reduced more prominently in tomato as compared to cucumber. On the other hand, the content of phenolics and flavonoids was increased in both plants with pronounced increase in tomato particularly under the highest level of salinity stress. The metabolomic profiling in stressful plants was significantly influenced by salinity stress and some bioactive secondary metabolites was enhanced in both cucumber and tomato plants. The enhancement of secondary metabolites under salinity stress may explain the tolerance and sensitivity of cucumber and tomato under salinity stress. The metabolomic evaluation combined with multivariate data analysis revealed a similar mechanism of action of plants to mediate stress, with variant level of this response in both plant species. Based on these results, the effect of salinity stress on seeds germination, seedlings growth and metabolomic content of plants was discussed in terms of tolerance and sensitivity of plants to salinity stress. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Abiotic Stress on Plants 2020–2021)
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Article
Epipactis tremolsii Seed Diversity in Two Close but Extremely Different Populations: Just a Case of Intraspecific Variability?
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1625; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111625 - 23 Nov 2020
Viewed by 560
Abstract
Analysis of the seed morphology is a widely used approach in ecological and taxonomic studies. In this context, intraspecific variability with respect to seed morphology (size, weight, and density) was assessed in two close Epipactis tremolsii Pau. populations sharing the same ecological conditions, [...] Read more.
Analysis of the seed morphology is a widely used approach in ecological and taxonomic studies. In this context, intraspecific variability with respect to seed morphology (size, weight, and density) was assessed in two close Epipactis tremolsii Pau. populations sharing the same ecological conditions, except for the soil pollution distinguishing one of them. Larger and heavier seeds were found in plants growing on the heavy metal polluted site, while no differences in seed density were detected between seeds produced by plants growing on the contaminated and the control site. Moreover, seed coats and embryos varying together in their dimensions were described in the control population, while coats varying in their size independently from embryos were described in plants growing on the polluted site. Seeds from the two studied populations significantly differed in several parameters suggesting that intraspecific seed variability occurred in the case study. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Functional Traits from an Intraspecific Variability Perspective)
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Article
Advancements in Low-Chill Blueberry Vaccinium corymbosum L. Tissue Culture Practices
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1624; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111624 - 23 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1408
Abstract
The demand for blueberry Vaccinium corymbosum L. (and hybrids) plants has significantly increased in the last 30 years due to its market expansion. In vitro propagation of sterile plants are required for commercial purposes but also for research applications such as plant transformation. [...] Read more.
The demand for blueberry Vaccinium corymbosum L. (and hybrids) plants has significantly increased in the last 30 years due to its market expansion. In vitro propagation of sterile plants are required for commercial purposes but also for research applications such as plant transformation. Thus far, tissue culture characteristics of the tropical-adapted blueberry have been scarcely studied. In this study we present the following findings: (i) zeatin, a hormone used to promote plant growth, should be used in the 1–2 mg/L range to promote plant architecture optimal for transformation experiments; (ii) red-blue LED lights induce more production of meristems and biomass than white LED or fluorescent lights; (iii) levels as high as 1000 mg/L of decontamination agents (the antibiotics timentin and cefotaxime) can be used to eliminate Agrobacterium overgrowth without inhibiting plant growth during plant transformation experiments; (iv) kanamycin, paromomycin, and geneticin, which are widely used antibiotics to select transgene-carrying transformants, cannot be efficiently used in this system; (v) glufosinate, a widely used herbicide, shows potential to be used as an effective selectable marker for transformed plants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Tissue Culture)
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Article
Functional Attributes and Anticancer Potentialities of Chico (Pachycereus Weberi) and Jiotilla (Escontria Chiotilla) Fruits Extract
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1623; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111623 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1044
Abstract
Mexico has a great diversity of cacti, however, many of their fruits have not been studied in greater depth. Several bioactive compounds available in cacti juices extract have demonstrated nutraceutical properties. Two cactus species are interesting for their biologically active pigments, which are [...] Read more.
Mexico has a great diversity of cacti, however, many of their fruits have not been studied in greater depth. Several bioactive compounds available in cacti juices extract have demonstrated nutraceutical properties. Two cactus species are interesting for their biologically active pigments, which are chico (Pachycereus weberi (J. M. Coult.) Backeb)) and jiotilla (Escontria chiotilla (Weber) Rose)). Hence, the goal of this work was to evaluate the bioactive compounds, i.e., betalains, total phenolic, vitamin C, antioxidant, and mineral content in the extract of the above-mentioned P. weberi and E. chiotilla. Then, clarified extracts were evaluated for their antioxidant activity and cytotoxicity (cancer cell lines) potentialities. Based on the obtained results, Chico fruit extract was found to be a good source of vitamin C (27.19 ± 1.95 mg L-Ascorbic acid/100 g fresh sample). Moreover, chico extract resulted in a high concentration of micronutrients, i.e., potassium (517.75 ± 16.78 mg/100 g) and zinc (2.46 ± 0.65 mg/100 g). On the other hand, Jiotilla has a high content of biologically active pigment, i.e., betaxanthins (4.17 ± 0.35 mg/g dry sample). The antioxidant activities of clarified extracts of chico and jiotilla were 80.01 ± 5.10 and 280.88 ± 7.62 mg/100 g fresh sample (DPPH method), respectively. From the cytotoxicity perspective against cancer cell lines, i.e., CaCo-2, MCF-7, HepG2, and PC-3, the clarified extracts of chico showed cytotoxicity (%cell viability) in CaCo-2 (49.7 ± 0.01%) and MCF-7 (45.56 ± 0.05%). A normal fibroblast cell line (NIH/3T3) was used, as a control, for comparison purposes. While jiotilla extract had cytotoxicity against HepG2 (47.31 ± 0.03%) and PC-3 (53.65 ± 0.04%). These results demonstrated that Chico and jiotilla are excellent resources of biologically active constituents with nutraceuticals potentialities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structural and Functional Analysis of Extracts in Plants)
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Review
Opportunities and Challenges in Studies of Host-Pathogen Interactions and Management of Verticillium dahliae in Tomatoes
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1622; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111622 - 22 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1090
Abstract
Tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum L.) are a valuable horticultural crop that are grown and consumed worldwide. Optimal production is hindered by several factors, among which Verticillium dahliae, the cause of Verticillium wilt, is considered a major biological constraint in temperate production regions. [...] Read more.
Tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum L.) are a valuable horticultural crop that are grown and consumed worldwide. Optimal production is hindered by several factors, among which Verticillium dahliae, the cause of Verticillium wilt, is considered a major biological constraint in temperate production regions. V. dahliae is difficult to mitigate because it is a vascular pathogen, has a broad host range and worldwide distribution, and can persist in soil for years. Understanding pathogen virulence and genetic diversity, host resistance, and plant-pathogen interactions could ultimately inform the development of integrated strategies to manage the disease. In recent years, considerable research has focused on providing new insights into these processes, as well as the development and integration of environment-friendly management approaches. Here, we discuss the current knowledge on the race and population structure of V. dahliae, including pathogenicity factors, host genes, proteins, enzymes involved in defense, and the emergent management strategies and future research directions for managing Verticillium wilt in tomatoes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Verticillium Wilt Disease)
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Article
Effect of Adjuvants on Herbicidal Activity and Selectivity of Three Phytotoxins Produced by the Fungus, Stagonospora cirsii
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1621; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111621 - 21 Nov 2020
Viewed by 872
Abstract
The use of many fungal phytotoxins as natural herbicides is still limited because they cannot penetrate leaf cuticle without injury and a little is known on their selectivity. In order to assess the herbicidal potential of phytotoxic 10-membered lactones (stagonolide A, stagonolide K, [...] Read more.
The use of many fungal phytotoxins as natural herbicides is still limited because they cannot penetrate leaf cuticle without injury and a little is known on their selectivity. In order to assess the herbicidal potential of phytotoxic 10-membered lactones (stagonolide A, stagonolide K, and herbarumin I), the selection of adjuvants, the evaluation of selectivity of the toxins and the efficacy of their formulations were performed. Among four adjuvants tested, Hasten™ (0.1%, v/v) increased phytotoxic activity of all the toxins assayed on non-punctured leaf discs of Sonchus arvensis. When assayed on intact leaf fragments of 18 plants species, 10 species were low to moderately sensitive to stagonolide A, while just five and three species were sensitive to stagonolide K and herbarumin I, respectively. Both leaf damage or addition of Hasten™ (0.1%) to the formulations of the compounds considerably increased or altered the sensitivity of plants to the toxins. Stagonolide A was shown to be non-selective phytotoxin. The selectivity profile of stagonolide K and herbarumin I depended on the leaf wounding or the adjuvant addition. Stagonolide A and herbarumin I formulated in 0.5% Hasten™ showed considerable herbicidal effect on S. arvensis aerial shoots. This study supported the potential of the oil-based adjuvant Hasten™ to increase the herbicidal efficacy of natural phytotoxins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioactive Components in Plant Pathogens)
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Article
Euphorbia cuneata Represses LPS-Induced Acute Lung Injury in Mice via Its Antioxidative and Anti-Inflammatory Activities
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1620; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111620 - 21 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 868
Abstract
Euphorbia cuneata (EC; Euphorbiaceae), which widely grows in Saudi Arabia and Yemen, is used traditionally to treat pain and inflammation. This study aimed to evaluate the protective anti-inflammatory effect of a standardized extract of EC against lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced acute lung injury (ALI) in [...] Read more.
Euphorbia cuneata (EC; Euphorbiaceae), which widely grows in Saudi Arabia and Yemen, is used traditionally to treat pain and inflammation. This study aimed to evaluate the protective anti-inflammatory effect of a standardized extract of EC against lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced acute lung injury (ALI) in mice and the possible underlying mechanism(s) of this pharmacologic activity. ALI was induced in male Balb/c mice using intraperitoneal injection of LPS. A standardized total methanol extract of EC or dexamethasone was administered 5 days prior to LPS challenge. Bronchoalveolar fluid (BALF) and lung samples were collected for analysis. The results demonstrated the protective anti-inflammatory effect of EC against LPS-induced ALI in mice. Standardized EC contained 2R-naringenin-7-O-β-glucoside (1), kaempferol-7-O-β-glucoside (2), cuneatannin (3), quercetin (4), and 2R-naringenin (5) in concentrations of 6.16, 4.80, 51.05, 13.20, and 50.00 mg/g of extract, respectively. EC showed a protective effect against LPS-induced pulmonary damage. EC reduced lung wet/dry weight (W/D) ratio and total protein content in BALF, indicating attenuation of the pulmonary edema. Total and differential cell counts were decreased in EC-treated animals. Histopathological examination confirmed the protective effect of EC, as indicated by an amelioration of LPS-induced lesions in lung tissue. EC also showed a potent anti-oxidative property as it decreased lipid peroxidation and increased the antioxidants in lung tissue. Finally, the anti-inflammatory activity of EC was obvious through its ability to suppress the activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB), and hence its reduction of the levels of downstream inflammatory mediators. In conclusion, these results demonstrate the protective effects of EC against LPS-induced lung injury in mice, which may be due to its antioxidative and anti-inflammatory activities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structural and Functional Analysis of Extracts in Plants)
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Review
Baccharis dracunculifolia and Dalbergia ecastophyllum, Main Plant Sources for Bioactive Properties in Green and Red Brazilian Propolis
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1619; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111619 - 21 Nov 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 992
Abstract
Nowadays, propolis is used as a highly valuable product in alternative medicine for improving health or treating a large spectrum of pathologies, an ingredient in pharmaceutical products, and also as a food additive. Different vegetal materials are collected by honeybees and mixed with [...] Read more.
Nowadays, propolis is used as a highly valuable product in alternative medicine for improving health or treating a large spectrum of pathologies, an ingredient in pharmaceutical products, and also as a food additive. Different vegetal materials are collected by honeybees and mixed with wax and other own substances in order to obtain the final product, called propolis. It is known as the bee product with the widest chemical composition due to the raw material collected by the bees. Different types are known worldwide: green Brazilian propolis (having Baccharis dracunculifolia as the major plant source), red Brazilian propolis (from Dalbergia ecastophyllum), European propolis (Populus nigra L.), Russian propolis (Betula verrucosa Ehrh), Cuban and Venezuelan red propolis (Clusia spp.), etc. An impressive number of scientific papers already demonstrate the pharmacological potential of different types of propolis, the most important activities being the antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antitumor, immunomodulatory, and antioxidant activities. However, the bioactive compounds responsible for each activity have not been fully elucidated. This review aims to collect important data about the chemical composition and bioactive properties of the vegetal sources and to compare with the chemical composition of respective propolis types, in order to determine the connection between the floral source and the propolis properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plants: Sources of Diversity in Propolis Properties)
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Article
Effects of Irrigation with Different Sources of Water on Growth, Yield and Essential Oil Compounds in Oregano
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1618; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111618 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 664
Abstract
Aromatic plants can benefit from the use of treated wastewater to satisfy their water requirements, but the effects on the essential oil yield and quality need an assessment. The aims of this study were to assess the effects of freshwater and treated wastewater [...] Read more.
Aromatic plants can benefit from the use of treated wastewater to satisfy their water requirements, but the effects on the essential oil yield and quality need an assessment. The aims of this study were to assess the effects of freshwater and treated wastewater obtained from a Sicilian (Italy) pilot-scale horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland system on plant growth and yield, essential oil yield and composition of oregano (Origanum vulgare ssp. hirtum (Link) Ietswaart) and soil characteristics. The system had a total surface area of 100 m2 and was planted with giant reed and umbrella sedge. An experimental open field of oregano was set up close to the system. Two years and two different sources of irrigation water were tested in a split-plot design for a two-factor experiment. Treated wastewater was characterized by higher values of mineral and organic constituents than freshwater. The results highlight that short-term irrigation with freshwater and treated wastewater, in both years, led to increased plant growth, dry weight and essential oil yield of oregano plants. However, it did not significantly affect the essential oil content and composition in comparison with the control. Furthermore, the year and source of irrigation water did not significantly vary the chemical composition of the soil. Our results suggest that treated wastewater can be considered an alternative to freshwater for the cultivation of oregano due to the fact that it does not greatly influence the yield quality and quantity of this species in the short-term. Full article
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Article
Characterization and Stress Response of the JmjC Domain-Containing Histone Demethylase Gene Family in the Allotetraploid Cotton Species Gossypium hirsutum
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1617; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111617 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 921
Abstract
Histone modification is an important epigenetic modification that controls gene transcriptional regulation in eukaryotes. Histone methylation is accomplished by histone methyltransferase and can occur on two amino acid residues, arginine and lysine. JumonjiC (JmjC) domain-containing histone demethylase regulates gene transcription and chromatin structure [...] Read more.
Histone modification is an important epigenetic modification that controls gene transcriptional regulation in eukaryotes. Histone methylation is accomplished by histone methyltransferase and can occur on two amino acid residues, arginine and lysine. JumonjiC (JmjC) domain-containing histone demethylase regulates gene transcription and chromatin structure by changing the methylation state of the lysine residue site and plays an important role in plant growth and development. In this study, we carried out genome-wide identification and comprehensive analysis of JmjC genes in the allotetraploid cotton species Gossypium hirsutum. In total, 50 JmjC genes were identified and in G. hirsutum, and 25 JmjC genes were identified in its two diploid progenitors, G. arboreum and G. raimondii, respectively. Phylogenetic analysis divided these JmjC genes into five subfamilies. A collinearity analysis of the two subgenomes of G. hirsutum and the genomes of G. arboreum and G. raimondii uncovered a one-to-one relationship between homologous genes of the JmjC gene family. Most homologs in the JmjC gene family between A and D subgenomes of G. hirsutum have similar exon-intron structures, which indicated that JmjC family genes were conserved after the polyploidization. All G. hirsutumJmjC genes were found to have a typical JmjC domain, and some genes also possess other special domains important for their function. Analysis of promoter regions revealed that cis-acting elements, such as those related to hormone and abiotic stress response, were enriched in G. hirsutum JmjC genes. According to a reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) analysis, most G. hirsutumJmjC genes had high abundance expression at developmental stages of fibers, suggesting that they might participate in cotton fiber development. In addition, some G. hirsutumJmjC genes were found to have different degrees of response to cold or osmotic stress, thus indicating their potential role in these types of abiotic stress response. Our results provide useful information for understanding the evolutionary history and biological function of JmjC genes in cotton. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polyploidy and Evolution in Plants)
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Article
Metabolic Profiling of Primary Metabolites and Galantamine Biosynthesis in Wounded Lycoris radiata Callus
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1616; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111616 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 883
Abstract
Plants are continuously exposed to abiotic and biotic factors that lead to wounding stress. Different plants exhibit diverse defense mechanisms through which various important metabolites are synthesized. Humans can exploit these mechanisms to improve the efficacy of existing drugs and to develop new [...] Read more.
Plants are continuously exposed to abiotic and biotic factors that lead to wounding stress. Different plants exhibit diverse defense mechanisms through which various important metabolites are synthesized. Humans can exploit these mechanisms to improve the efficacy of existing drugs and to develop new ones. Most previous studies have focused on the effects of wounding stress on the different plant parts, such as leaves, stems, and roots. To date, however, no study has investigated the accumulation of primary and galantamine content following the exposure of a callus to wounding stress. Therefore, in the present study, we exposed Lycoris radiata calli to wounding stress and assessed the expression levels of several genes involved in metabolic pathways at various time points (0, 3, 6, 12, 24, 48, 72, and 96 h of exposure). Furthermore, we quantify the primary and galantamine content using gas chromatography–time-of-flight mass spectrometry and the high-performance liquid chromatography qRT-PCR analysis of eight galantamine pathway genes (LrPAL-2, LrPAL-3, LrC4H-2, LrC3H, LrTYDC2, LrN4OMT, LrNNR, and LrCYP96T) revealed that seven genes, except LrN4OMT, were significantly expressed following exposure to wounding stress. Galantamine contents of calli after 3, 6, 12, 24, 48, 72, and 96 h of exposure were respectively 2.5, 2.5, 3.5, 3.5, 5.0, 5.0, and 8.5 times higher than that after 0 h of exposure. Furthermore, a total of 48 hydrophilic metabolites were detected in the 0 h exposed callus and 96 h exposed callus using GC-TOFMS. In particular, a strong positive correlation between galantamine and initial precursors, such as phenylalanine and tyrosine, was observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Tissue Culture)
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Article
Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus: Seed Transmission Rate and Efficacy of Different Seed Disinfection Treatments
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1615; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111615 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2376
Abstract
Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (ToBRFV) is a highly infectious virus, that is becoming a threat to tomato production worldwide. In this work we evaluated the localization of ToBRFV particles in tomato seeds, its seed transmission rate and efficacy of disinfection, and the [...] Read more.
Tomato brown rugose fruit virus (ToBRFV) is a highly infectious virus, that is becoming a threat to tomato production worldwide. In this work we evaluated the localization of ToBRFV particles in tomato seeds, its seed transmission rate and efficacy of disinfection, and the effects of different thermal- and chemical-based treatments on ToBRFV-infected seeds’ germination. Analyses demonstrated that ToBRFV was located in the seed coat, sometime in the endosperm, but never in the embryo; its transmission from infected seeds to plantlets occurs by micro-lesions during the germination. The ToBRFV seed transmission rate was 2.8% in cotyledons and 1.8% in the third true leaf. Regarding the different disinfection treatments, they returned 100% of germination at 14 days post-treatment (dpt), except for the treatment with 2% hydrochloric acid +1.5% sodium hypochlorite for 24 h, for which no seed germinated after 14 dpt. All treatments have the ability to inactivate ToBRFV, but in six out of seven treatments ToBRFV was still detectable by RT-qPCR. These results raise many questions about the correct way to carry out diagnosis at customs. To our knowledge, this is the first study on the effective localization of ToBRFV particles in seeds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Seed Borne Plant Viruses: A Threat for the Global Exchanges)
Communication
Halophila Balfourii Solereder (Hydrocharitaceae)—An Overlooked Seagrass Species
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1614; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111614 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 570
Abstract
Halophila balfourii Solereder has long been treated as a synonym of Halophila stipulacea (Forrsk.) Asch., although it was named more than a century ago. Microscopic (optical microscope and scanning electron microscope) studies on all available herbarium materials of these two species have reconfirmed [...] Read more.
Halophila balfourii Solereder has long been treated as a synonym of Halophila stipulacea (Forrsk.) Asch., although it was named more than a century ago. Microscopic (optical microscope and scanning electron microscope) studies on all available herbarium materials of these two species have reconfirmed that the unique papillose leaf epidermis is only presented in H. balfourii but not in H. stipulacea. The pattern of seed testa reticulate is significantly different between these two species. Furthermore, H. balfourii is predominately restricted to the Rodriguez and Mauritius Islands while membranous leafed H. stipulacea is widely distributed in the Red Sea, the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea as well as East Africa coasts. Based on distinctive characteristics of the leaf and seed coat, and its geographic distribution, it is recommended to reinstate H. balfourii as an independent species and not as a synonym of H. stipulacea. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Systematics and Ecology of Algae and Marine Plants)
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Article
Automatic Stomatal Segmentation Based on Delaunay-Rayleigh Frequency Distance
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1613; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111613 - 20 Nov 2020
Viewed by 765
Abstract
The CO2 and water vapor exchange between leaf and atmosphere are relevant for plant physiology. This process is done through the stomata. These structures are fundamental in the study of plants since their properties are linked to the evolutionary process of the [...] Read more.
The CO2 and water vapor exchange between leaf and atmosphere are relevant for plant physiology. This process is done through the stomata. These structures are fundamental in the study of plants since their properties are linked to the evolutionary process of the plant, as well as its environmental and phytohormonal conditions. Stomatal detection is a complex task due to the noise and morphology of the microscopic images. Although in recent years segmentation algorithms have been developed that automate this process, they all use techniques that explore chromatic characteristics. This research explores a unique feature in plants, which corresponds to the stomatal spatial distribution within the leaf structure. Unlike segmentation techniques based on deep learning tools, we emphasize the search for an optimal threshold level, so that a high percentage of stomata can be detected, independent of the size and shape of the stomata. This last feature has not been reported in the literature, except for those results of geometric structure formation in the salt formation and other biological formations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Plant Development and Morphogenesis)
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Article
In-silico Exploration of Channel Type and Efflux Silicon Transporters and Silicification Proteins in 80 Sequenced Viridiplantae Genomes
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1612; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111612 - 20 Nov 2020
Viewed by 808
Abstract
Silicon (Si) accumulation protects plants from biotic and abiotic stresses. It is transported and distributed within the plant body through a cooperative system of channel type (e.g., OsLsi1) and efflux (Lsi2s e.g., OsLsi2) Si transporters (SITs) that belong to Noduline-26 like [...] Read more.
Silicon (Si) accumulation protects plants from biotic and abiotic stresses. It is transported and distributed within the plant body through a cooperative system of channel type (e.g., OsLsi1) and efflux (Lsi2s e.g., OsLsi2) Si transporters (SITs) that belong to Noduline-26 like intrinsic protein family of aquaporins and an uncharacterized anion transporter family, respectively. Si is deposited in plant tissues as phytoliths and the process is known as biosilicification but the knowledge about the proteins involved in this process is limited. In the present study, we explored channel type SITs and Lsi2s, and siliplant1 protein (Slp1) in 80 green plant species. We found 80 channel type SITs and 133 Lsi2s. The channel type SITs characterized by the presence of two NPA motifs, GSGR or STAR selectivity filter, and 108 amino acids between two NPA motifs were absent from Chlorophytes, while Streptophytes evolved two different types of channel type SITs with different selectivity filters. Both channel type SITs and Lsi2s evolved two types of gene structures each, however, Lsi2s are ancient and were also found in Chlorophyta. Homologs of Slp1 (225) were present in almost all Streptophytes regardless of their Si accumulation capacity. In Si accumulator plant species, the Slp1s were characterized by the presence of H, D-rich domain, P, K, E-rich domain, and P, T, Y-rich domain, while moderate Si accumulators lacked H, D-rich domain and P, T, Y-rich domains. The digital expression analysis and coexpression networks highlighted the role of channel type and Lsi2s, and how Slp1 homologs were ameliorating plants’ ability to withstand different stresses by co-expressing with genes related to structural integrity and signaling. Together, the in-silico exploration made in this study increases our knowledge of the process of biosilicification in plants. Full article
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Article
Variability in the Content of Phenolic Compounds in Plum Fruit
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1611; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111611 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 721
Abstract
The aim of this study was to determine the composition and content of phenolic compounds in extracts of plum fruit. Fruit of 17 plum cultivars were analyzed. Fruit samples were collected in 2019 from fruit trees with “Myrobalan” (P. cerasifera Ehrh.) and [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to determine the composition and content of phenolic compounds in extracts of plum fruit. Fruit of 17 plum cultivars were analyzed. Fruit samples were collected in 2019 from fruit trees with “Myrobalan” (P. cerasifera Ehrh.) and “Wangenheim Prune” (P. domestica L.) rootstocks. The following glycosides of the flavonol group were identified: avicularin, isorhamnetin-3-O-rutinoside, isoquercitrin, hyperoside, rutin, and an aglycone quercetin. Compounds of the flavan-3-ol group were identified, such as (+)-catechin, procyanidin C1, and procyanidin A2, along with chlorogenic acid attributed to phenolic acids and a non-phenolic cyclitol–quinic acid. Of all the analytes identified in plum fruit samples, quinic acid predominated, while chlorogenic acid predominated among all the identified phenolic compounds, and rutin predominated in the flavonol group. Hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) and principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that fruit samples of “Kubanskaya Kometa”, “Zarechnaya Raniaya”, “Duke of Edinburgh”, “Jubileum”, and “Favorita del Sultano” cultivars had different quantitative content of phenolic compounds from that observed in other samples. The highest total amount of phenolic compounds was found in the European plum samples of the “Zarechnaya Rannyaya” cultivar, while the amount of quinic acid was the highest in plum fruit samples of the “Jubileum” cultivar. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Resources of Berry and Medicinal Plants)
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Article
Biomolecule from Trigonella stellata from Saudi Flora to Suppress Osteoporosis via Osteostromal Regulations
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1610; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111610 - 20 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 972
Abstract
Trigonella stellata has used in folk medicine as palatable and nutraceutical herb. It also regulates hypocholesterolemia, hypoglycemia, and has showed anti-inflammatory activities as well as antioxidants efficacy. Osteoporosis is a one of bone metabolic disorders and is continuously increasing worldwide. In the present [...] Read more.
Trigonella stellata has used in folk medicine as palatable and nutraceutical herb. It also regulates hypocholesterolemia, hypoglycemia, and has showed anti-inflammatory activities as well as antioxidants efficacy. Osteoporosis is a one of bone metabolic disorders and is continuously increasing worldwide. In the present study, caffeic acid was isolated from Trigonella stellata and identified using 1 D- and 2 D-NMR spectroscopic data. Caffeic acid was investigated on osteoblast and osteoclast in vitro using mice bone marrow-derived mesenchymal cells. Caffeic acid played reciprocal proliferation between osteoblast and osteoclast cells and accelerated the bone mineralization. It was confirmed by cytotoxicity, alkaline phosphatase (ALP), alizarin red S (ARS), and Tartrate resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP) assay. Caffeic acid regulated the osteogenic marker and upregulated the osteopontin, osteocalcin, and bone morphogenic proteins (BMP). Quantitative real time PCR and Western blot were used to quantify the mRNA and protein markers. It also regulated the matrix metalloprotease-2 (MMP-2) and cathepsin-K proteolytic markers in osteoclast cells. In addition, caffeic acid inhibited bone resorption in osteoclast cells. On the other hand, it upregulate osteoblast differentiation through stimulation of extracellular calcium concentrations osteoblast differentiation, respectively. The results also were confirmed through in silico docking of caffeic acid against cathepsin-B and cathepsin-K markers. These findings revealed that caffeic acid has a potential role in bone-metabolic disorder through its multifaceted effects on osteoblast and osteoclast regulations and controls osteoporosis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structural and Functional Analysis of Extracts in Plants)
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Article
Mechanisms of Antidiabetic Activity of Methanolic Extract of Punica granatum Leaves in Nicotinamide/Streptozotocin-Induced Type 2 Diabetes in Rats
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1609; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111609 - 19 Nov 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 835
Abstract
The current study aimed to establish the mechanisms of antidiabetic activity of methanolic extract of Punica granatum leaves (MEPGL) in nicotinamide/streptozotocin-induced type 2 diabetes in rats. Phytochemical screening, HPLC analysis, and acute toxicity study of MEPGL were carried out. Various concentrations of MEPGL [...] Read more.
The current study aimed to establish the mechanisms of antidiabetic activity of methanolic extract of Punica granatum leaves (MEPGL) in nicotinamide/streptozotocin-induced type 2 diabetes in rats. Phytochemical screening, HPLC analysis, and acute toxicity study of MEPGL were carried out. Various concentrations of MEPGL (100, 200, 400, and 600 mg/kg) were administered orally to diabetic rats for 45 days on a daily basis. The antidiabetic effect of MEPGL was examined by measuring blood glucose, plasma insulin, and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) levels, as well as with an oral glucose tolerance test. The antioxidant effect of MEPGL was determined by analyzing hepatic and renal antioxidant markers, namely superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), reduced glutathione (GSH), and lipid peroxidation. The other biochemical markers alanine transaminase (ALT), aspartate transaminase (AST), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), urea, and creatinine, as well as total cholesterol, triglycerides, and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) were also studied. Type 2 diabetes significantly altered these parameters, while oral administration of the MEPGL significantly ameliorated them. Moreover, the pancreatic histopathological changes were attenuated with MEPGL treatment. In a nutshell, oral MEPGL administration in diabetic rats showed antidiabetic activity due to its antioxidant activity, most probably due to the gallic acid, ellagic acid, and apigenin found in MEPGL. Full article
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Article
Physiological Integration Increases Sexual Reproductive Performance of the Rhizomatous Grass Hierochloe glabra
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1608; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111608 - 19 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 493
Abstract
Clonal plants usually reproduce asexually through vegetative propagation and sexually by producing seeds. Physiological integration, the translocation of essential resources between ramets, usually improves vegetative reproduction. However, how physiological integration affects sexual reproduction has been less studied in clonal grasses. Here, we chose [...] Read more.
Clonal plants usually reproduce asexually through vegetative propagation and sexually by producing seeds. Physiological integration, the translocation of essential resources between ramets, usually improves vegetative reproduction. However, how physiological integration affects sexual reproduction has been less studied in clonal grasses. Here, we chose Hierochloe glabra, a major early spring forage of the eastern Eurasian steppe, and conducted a series of field experiments, including sampling reproductive ramets connected by tillering nodes to different numbers of vegetative ramets and 15N leaf labeling of ramet pairs at the seed-filling stage. In the natural populations of H. glabra, vegetative ramets were taller, had more and larger leaves, and greater biomass than reproductive ramets. Except for reproductive ramet biomass, sexual reproductive characteristics significantly increased with an increase in the number and biomass of vegetative ramets connected to tillering nodes. 15N labeling showed that vegetative ramets supplied nutrients to reproductive ramets through tillering nodes. Overall, our results indicate that significant differences in morphological characteristics and biomass allocation underlie resources translocation from vegetative ramets towards reproductive ramets. Physiological integration between different functional ramets can increase sexual reproductive performance, which will be beneficial to population persistence in H. glabra. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Ecology)
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Article
Gene Mapping, Genome-Wide Transcriptome Analysis, and WGCNA Reveals the Molecular Mechanism for Triggering Programmed Cell Death in Rice Mutant pir1
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1607; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111607 - 19 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1051
Abstract
Programmed cell death (PCD) is involved in plant growth and development and in resistance to biotic and abiotic stress. To understand the molecular mechanism that triggers PCD, phenotypic and physiological analysis was conducted using the first three leaves of mutant rice PCD-induced-resistance 1( [...] Read more.
Programmed cell death (PCD) is involved in plant growth and development and in resistance to biotic and abiotic stress. To understand the molecular mechanism that triggers PCD, phenotypic and physiological analysis was conducted using the first three leaves of mutant rice PCD-induced-resistance 1(pir1) and its wild-type ZJ22. The 2nd and 3rd leaves of pir1 had a lesion mimic phenotype, which was shown to be an expression of PCD induced by H2O2-accumulation. The PIR1 gene was mapped in a 498 kb-interval between the molecular markers RM3321 and RM3616 on chromosome 5, and further analysis suggested that the PCD phenotype of pir1 is controlled by a novel gene for rice PCD. By comparing the mutant with wild type rice, 1679, 6019, and 4500 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified in the three leaf positions, respectively. KEGG analysis revealed that DEGs were most highly enriched in phenylpropanoid biosynthesis, alpha-linolenic acid metabolism, and brassinosteroid biosynthesis. In addition, conjoint analysis of transcriptome data by weighted gene co-expression network analysis (WGCNA) showed that the turquoise module of the 18 identified modules may be related to PCD. There are close interactions or indirect cross-regulations between the differential genes that are significantly enriched in the phenylpropanoid biosynthesis pathway and the hormone biosynthesis pathway in this module, which indicates that these genes may respond to and trigger PCD. Full article
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Communication
The Discovery of the Rare Chara baueri (Charales, Charophyceae) in Serbia
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1606; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111606 - 19 Nov 2020
Viewed by 810
Abstract
Chara baueri is one of the rarest charophytes worldwide. It had been considered extinct in Europe for more than a century, from the 1870s to 2006, when it was rediscovered in Germany. The current distribution of this species is limited to a few [...] Read more.
Chara baueri is one of the rarest charophytes worldwide. It had been considered extinct in Europe for more than a century, from the 1870s to 2006, when it was rediscovered in Germany. The current distribution of this species is limited to a few localities in Europe (Germany, Poland and Russia), and one locality in Asia (Kazakhstan). We present a new finding of Chara baueri, to be a significant contribution to the species ecology and biogeography, and helping to review and update the current scarce knowledge. Chara baueri was discovered in Serbia and monitored for two vegetative seasons in 2018 and 2019, along with the associated macrophyte vegetation and water quality parameters. The morphology and ecology data of the species are presented comparatively with the literature data and the biogeography is critically reviewed. The population in Serbia is the first verified record of Chara baueri in southern Europe. Considering the recent findings and the knowledge accumulated in these records, Chara baueri was very possibly never extinct at all, but overlooked in Europe for the entire 20th century. We suggest that waterfowl migrating from the northern parts of Europe should be considered as the important spreading agent of Chara baueri in southern regions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Macrophytes in Inland Waters: From Knowledge to Management)
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Article
Insights into Comparative Genomics, Codon Usage Bias, and Phylogenetic Relationship of Species from Biebersteiniaceae and Nitrariaceae Based on Complete Chloroplast Genomes
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1605; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111605 - 18 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 949
Abstract
Biebersteiniaceae and Nitrariaceae, two small families, were classified in Sapindales recently. Taxonomic and phylogenetic relationships within Sapindales are still poorly resolved and controversial. In current study, we compared the chloroplast genomes of five species (Biebersteinia heterostemon, Peganum harmala, Nitraria roborowskii, Nitraria sibirica, [...] Read more.
Biebersteiniaceae and Nitrariaceae, two small families, were classified in Sapindales recently. Taxonomic and phylogenetic relationships within Sapindales are still poorly resolved and controversial. In current study, we compared the chloroplast genomes of five species (Biebersteinia heterostemon, Peganum harmala, Nitraria roborowskii, Nitraria sibirica, and Nitraria tangutorum) from Biebersteiniaceae and Nitrariaceae. High similarity was detected in the gene order, content and orientation of the five chloroplast genomes; 13 highly variable regions were identified among the five species. An accelerated substitution rate was found in the protein-coding genes, especially clpP. The effective number of codons (ENC), parity rule 2 (PR2), and neutrality plots together revealed that the codon usage bias is affected by mutation and selection. The phylogenetic analysis strongly supported (Nitrariaceae (Biebersteiniaceae + The Rest)) relationships in Sapindales. Our findings can provide useful information for analyzing phylogeny and molecular evolution within Biebersteiniaceae and Nitrariaceae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Evolution, Systematics, and Chloroplast Genome)
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Article
LHCSR3-Type NPQ Prevents Photoinhibition and Slowed Growth under Fluctuating Light in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1604; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111604 - 18 Nov 2020
Viewed by 600
Abstract
Natural light intensities can rise several orders of magnitude over subsecond time spans, posing a major challenge for photosynthesis. Fluctuating light tolerance in the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii requires alternative electron pathways, but the role of nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) is not known. Here, [...] Read more.
Natural light intensities can rise several orders of magnitude over subsecond time spans, posing a major challenge for photosynthesis. Fluctuating light tolerance in the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii requires alternative electron pathways, but the role of nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) is not known. Here, fluctuating light (10 min actinic light followed by 10 min darkness) led to significant increase in NPQ/qE-related proteins, LHCSR1 and LHCSR3, relative to constant light of the same subsaturating or saturating intensity. Elevated levels of LHCSR1/3 increased the ability of cells to safely dissipate excess light energy to heat (i.e., qE-type NPQ) during dark to light transition, as measured with chlorophyll fluorescence. The low qE phenotype of the npq4 mutant, which is unable to produce LHCSR3, was abolished under fluctuating light, showing that LHCSR1 alone enables very high levels of qE. Photosystem (PS) levels were also affected by light treatments; constant light led to lower PsbA levels and Fv/Fm values, while fluctuating light led to lower PsaA and maximum P700+ levels, indicating that constant and fluctuating light induced PSII and PSI photoinhibition, respectively. Under fluctuating light, npq4 suffered more PSI photoinhibition and significantly slower growth rates than parental wild type, whereas npq1 and npq2 mutants affected in xanthophyll carotenoid compositions had identical growth under fluctuating and constant light. Overall, LHCSR3 rather than total qE capacity or zeaxanthin is shown to be important in C. reinhardtii in tolerating fluctuating light, potentially via preventing PSI photoinhibition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue High Light Stresses in Photosynthetic Organisms)
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Article
Ontogeny and Anatomy of the Dimorphic Pitchers of Nepenthes rafflesiana Jack
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1603; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111603 - 18 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1437
Abstract
An enigmatic feature of tropical pitcher plants belonging to the genus Nepenthes is their dimorphic prey-capturing pitfall traps. In many species, the conspicuously shaped upper and lower pitchers grow from a swollen leaf tendril tip until finally opening as insect-alluring devices. Few have [...] Read more.
An enigmatic feature of tropical pitcher plants belonging to the genus Nepenthes is their dimorphic prey-capturing pitfall traps. In many species, the conspicuously shaped upper and lower pitchers grow from a swollen leaf tendril tip until finally opening as insect-alluring devices. Few have studied the ontogeny of these traps from an anatomical and quantitative morphological perspective. We investigated whether the anatomy and development of lower and upper type pitchers of N. rafflesiana differ or overlap in terms of 3D geometric morphology and microstructure progression and presence. We hypothesized that there is an overlap in the initial, but not all, developmental stages of the two pitcher types and that one pitcher type is suspended in development. We identified four important morphological changes of pitcher ontogeny and defined these as curvation, elongation, inflation and maturation phases. Pitcher length indicated progress through developmental phases, and we propose to use it as a tool for indication of developmental stage. Microstructure development coincided with the developmental phases defined. Additionally, we discovered a new anatomical feature of extrafloral nectariferous peristomal glands between the inner peristome ridges of upper and lower pitchers being hollow and analyze the chemistry of the sugars on the outside of these glands. Ontogenetic shape analysis indicated that upper and lower pitcher types develop with similar phase progression but have no directly overlapping morphology. This means that upper pitchers are not a derived state from lower pitchers. Independent developmental programs evolved to produce distinctly shaped upper and lower pitchers in Nepenthes, likely to exploit different food sources. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Plant Anatomy and Biochemistry)
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Review
Verticillium Wilt of Mint in the United States of America
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1602; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111602 - 18 Nov 2020
Viewed by 807
Abstract
Verticillium wilt, caused by the fungus Verticillium dahliae, is the most important and destructive disease of mint (Mentha spp.) in the United States (U.S.). The disease was first observed in commercial mint fields in the Midwestern U.S. in the 1920s and, by [...] Read more.
Verticillium wilt, caused by the fungus Verticillium dahliae, is the most important and destructive disease of mint (Mentha spp.) in the United States (U.S.). The disease was first observed in commercial mint fields in the Midwestern U.S. in the 1920s and, by the 1950s, was present in mint producing regions of the U.S. Pacific Northwest. Verticillium wilt continues to be a major limiting factor in commercial peppermint (Mentha x piperita) and Scotch spearmint (Mentha x gracilis) production, two of the most important sources of mint oil in the U.S. The perennial aspect of U.S. mint production, coupled with the soilborne, polyetic nature of V. dahliae, makes controlling Verticillium wilt in mint a challenge. Studies investigating the biology and genetics of the fungus, the molecular mechanisms of virulence and resistance, and the role of soil microbiota in modulating host-pathogen interactions are needed to improve our understanding of Verticillium wilt epidemiology and inform novel disease management strategies. This review will discuss the history and importance of Verticillium wilt in commercial U.S. mint production, as well as provide a format to highlight past and recent research advances in an effort to better understand and manage the disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Management of Verticillium Wilt Disease)
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Article
DNA-Based Authentication and Metabolomics Analysis of Medicinal Plants Samples by DNA Barcoding and Ultra-High-Performance Liquid Chromatography/Triple Quadrupole Mass Spectrometry (UHPLC-MS)
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1601; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111601 - 18 Nov 2020
Viewed by 733
Abstract
There is growing interest for medicinal plants in the world drug market. Particularly, Matricaria recutita L., Valeriana officinalis L., Tilia spp., and Camellia sinensis (L.) Kuntze are some of the most consumed medicinal plants for treatment of minor health problems. Medicinal plants are [...] Read more.
There is growing interest for medicinal plants in the world drug market. Particularly, Matricaria recutita L., Valeriana officinalis L., Tilia spp., and Camellia sinensis (L.) Kuntze are some of the most consumed medicinal plants for treatment of minor health problems. Medicinal plants are seen as natural and safe; however, they can cause interactions and produce adverse reactions. Moreover, there is lack of consensus in medicinal plants regulation worldwide. DNA barcoding and UHPLC-MS technique are increasingly used to correctly identify medicinal plants and guarantee their quality and therapeutic safety. We analyzed 33 samples of valerian, linden, tea, and chamomile acquired in pharmacies, supermarkets, and herbal shops by DNA barcoding and UHPLC-MS. DNA barcoding, using matk as a barcode marker, revealed that CH1 sold as Camellia sinensis was Blepharocalyx tweediei, and sample TS2 sold as linden belong to Malvales. On the other hand, UHPLC-MS analysis revealed the presence of bioactive compounds (apigenin-7-glucoside, acetoxy valerenic acid, valerenic acid, epigallocatechin, and tiliroside). However, none of samples met minimum content of these active principles (except for valerenic acid in VF3) according to the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and Real Spanish Pharmacopeia. In conclusion, this study revealed the need to incorporate DNA barcoding and HPLC-MS techniques in quality controls of medicinal plants. Full article
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Article
Floristic Changes in the Understory Vegetation of Mixed Temperate New England Freshwater Island Forests over a Period of 33 Years
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1600; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111600 - 18 Nov 2020
Viewed by 638
Abstract
During a 33-year sampling period, we observed species richness and calculated species evenness and Shannon Diversity for understory woody seedlings and herbaceous species on three small islands in Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire, and noted consistency of dominant plant species over time. Seedlings and [...] Read more.
During a 33-year sampling period, we observed species richness and calculated species evenness and Shannon Diversity for understory woody seedlings and herbaceous species on three small islands in Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire, and noted consistency of dominant plant species over time. Seedlings and herbaceous species were recorded and measured in 25 permanent plots that were created on the three islands in 1978. The understory species data were compiled by frequency and dominance of woody seedlings and herbaceous species. Data from 250 individual quadrats show that species richness more than doubled from 41 in 1978 to 83 species on all three islands in 2011. Species evenness on all the islands remained relatively constant in each of the four samplings. The combined Shannon’s Diversity for the three islands rose from 2.76 in 1978 to 3.37 in 2011. Dominant species in the study were Aralia nudicaulis, Gaultheria procumbens, Gaylussacia baccata, Maianthemum canadense, and Tsuga canadensis seedlings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Plant Ecology)
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Article
Disruption of Very-Long-Chain-Fatty Acid Synthesis Has an Impact on the Dynamics of Cellulose Synthase in Arabidopsis thaliana
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1599; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111599 - 18 Nov 2020
Viewed by 766
Abstract
In higher plants, cellulose is synthesized by membrane-spanning large protein complexes named cellulose synthase complexes (CSCs). In this study, the Arabidopsis PASTICCINO2 (PAS2) was identified as an interacting partner of cellulose synthases. PAS2 was previously characterized as the plant 3-hydroxy-acyl-CoA dehydratase, an ER [...] Read more.
In higher plants, cellulose is synthesized by membrane-spanning large protein complexes named cellulose synthase complexes (CSCs). In this study, the Arabidopsis PASTICCINO2 (PAS2) was identified as an interacting partner of cellulose synthases. PAS2 was previously characterized as the plant 3-hydroxy-acyl-CoA dehydratase, an ER membrane-localized dehydratase that is essential for very-long-chain-fatty acid (VLCFA) elongation. The pas2-1 mutants show defective cell elongation and reduction in cellulose content in both etiolated hypocotyls and light-grown roots. Although disruption of VLCFA synthesis by a genetic alteration had a reduction in VLCFA in both etiolated hypocotyls and light-grown roots, it had a differential effect on cellulose content in the two systems, suggesting the threshold level of VLCFA for efficient cellulose synthesis may be different in the two biological systems. pas2-1 had a reduction in both CSC delivery rate and CSC velocity at the PM in etiolated hypocotyls. Interestingly, Golgi but not post-Golgi endomembrane structures exhibited a severe defect in motility. Experiments using pharmacological perturbation of VLCFA content in etiolated hypocotyls strongly indicate a novel function of PAS2 in the regulation of CSC and Golgi motility. Through a combination of genetic, biochemical and cell biology studies, our study demonstrated that PAS2 as a multifunction protein has an important role in the regulation of cellulose biosynthesis in Arabidopsis hypocotyl. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structure and Function of Plant Cell Wall)
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Article
Responses of Upland Cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) Lines to Irrigated and Rainfed Conditions of Texas High Plains
Plants 2020, 9(11), 1598; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants9111598 - 18 Nov 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 591
Abstract
Understanding drought stress responses and the identification of phenotypic traits associated with drought are key factors in breeding for sustainable cotton production in limited irrigation water of semi-arid environments. The objective of this study was to evaluate the responses of upland cotton lines [...] Read more.
Understanding drought stress responses and the identification of phenotypic traits associated with drought are key factors in breeding for sustainable cotton production in limited irrigation water of semi-arid environments. The objective of this study was to evaluate the responses of upland cotton lines to rainfed and irrigated conditions. We compared selected agronomic traits over time, final yield and fiber quality of cotton lines grown in irrigated and rainfed trials. Under rainfed conditions, the average number of squares per plant sharply declined during weeks 10 to 14 while the average number of bolls per plant significantly reduced during weeks 13 to 15 after planting. Therefore, weeks 10 to 14 and weeks 13 to 15 are critical plant growth stages to differentiate among upland cotton lines for square and boll set, respectively, under drought stress. Variation in square and boll set during this stage may translate into variable lint percent, lint yield and fiber properties under water-limited conditions. Lint yield and fiber quality were markedly affected under rainfed conditions in all cotton lines tested. Despite significantly reduced lint yield in rainfed trials, some cotton lines including 11-21-703S, 06-46-153P, CS 50, L23, FM 989 and DP 491 performed relatively well under stress compared to other cotton lines. The results also reveal that cotton lines show variable responses for fiber properties under irrigated and rainfed trials. Breeding line 12-8-103S produced long, uniform and strong fibers under both irrigated and rainfed conditions. The significant variation observed among cotton genotypes for agronomic characteristics, yield and fiber quality under rainfed conditions indicate potential to breed cotton for improved drought tolerance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Responses of Plants to Environmental Stresses)
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