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    Crop Genetics · Breeding · Germplasm Resources
    Comparative genetic mapping revealed powdery mildew resistance gene MlWE4 derived from wild emmer is located in same genomic region of Pm36 and Ml3D232 on chromosome 5BL
    ZHANG Dong, OUYANG Shu-hong, WANG Li-li, CUI Yu, WU Qiu-hong, LIANG Yong, WANG Zhen-zhong, XIE Jing-zhong, ZHANG De-yun, WANG Yong, CHEN Yong-xing, LIU Zhi-yong
    2015, 14(4): 603-609.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60774-7
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Powdery mildew, caused by Blumeria graminis f. sp. tritici, is one of the most devastating wheat diseases. Wild emmer wheat (Triticum turgidum ssp. dicoccoides) is a promising source of disease resistance for wheat. A powdery mildew resistance gene conferring resistance to B. graminis f. sp. tritici isolate E09, originating from wild emmer wheat, has been transferred into the hexaploid wheat line WE4 through crossing and backcrossing. Genetic analyses indicated that the powdery mildew resistance was controlled by a single dominant gene, temporarily designated MlWE4. By mean of comparative genomics and bulked segregant analysis, a genetic linkage map of MlWE4 was constructed, and MlWE4 was mapped on the distal region of chromosome arm 5BL. Comparative genetic linkage maps showed that genes MlWE4, Pm36 and Ml3D232 were co-segregated with markers XBD37670 and XBD37680, indicating they are likely the same gene or alleles in the same locus. The co-segregated markers provide a starting point for chromosome landing and map-based cloning of MlWE4, Pm36 and Ml3D232.
    Comparative transcriptome profiling of two maize near-isogenic lines differing in the allelic state for bacterial brown spot disease resistance
    WU Xiao-jun, Xu Li, ZHAO Pan-feng, LI Na, WU Lei, HE Yan, WANG Shou-cai
    2015, 14(4): 610-621.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60873-X
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The bacterial brown spot disease (BBS), caused primarily by Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae van Hall (Pss), reduces plant vigor, yield and quality in maize. To reveal the nature of the defense mechanisms and identify genes involved in the effective host resistance, the dynamic changes of defense transcriptome triggered by the infection of Pss were investigated and compared between two maize near-isogenic lines (NILs). We found that Pss infection resulted in a sophisticated transcriptional reprogramming of several biological processes and the resistant NIL employed much faster defense responses than the susceptible NIL. Numerous genes encoding essential components of plant basal resistance would be able to be activated in the susceptible NIL, such as PEN1, PEN2, PEN3, and EDR1, however, in a basic manner, such resistance might not be sufficient for suppressing Pss pathogenesis. In addition, the expressions of a large number of PTI-, ETI-, PR-, and WRKY-related genes were pronouncedly activated in the resistant NIL, suggesting that maize employ a multitude of defense pathways to defend Pss infection. Six R-gene homologs were identified to have significantly higher expression levels in the resistant NIL at early time point, indicating that a robust surveillance system (gene-to-gene model) might operate in maize during Pss attacks, and these homolog genes are likely to be potential candidate resistance genes involved in BBS disease resistance. Furthermore, a holistic group of novel pathogen-responsive genes were defined, providing the repertoire of candidate genes for further functional characterization and identification of their regulation patterns during pathogen infection.
    Analysis of the independent- and interactive-photo-thermal effects on soybean flowering
    WU Ting-ting, LI Jin-yu, WU Cun-xiang, SUN Shi, MAO Ting-ting, JIANG Bing-jun, HOU Wen-sheng, HAN Tian-fu
    2015, 14(4): 622-632.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60856-X
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Soybean (Glycine max (L.) Merr.) is a typical short-day and warm season plant, and the interval between emergence and flowering has long been known to be regulated by environmental factors, primarily photoperiod and temperature. While the effects of photoperiod and temperature on soybean flowering have been extensively studied, a dissection of the component photo-thermal effects has not been documented for Chinese germplasm. Our objective of the current study was to evaluate the independent- and interactive-photo-thermal responses of 71 cultivars from 6 ecotypes spanning the soybean production regions in China. These cultivars were subjected in pot experiments to different temperature regimes by planting in spring (low temperature (LT)) and summer (high temperature (HT)), and integrating with short day (SD, 12 h), natural day (ND, variable day-length), and long day (LD, 16 h) treatments over two years. The duration of the vegetative phase from emergence to first bloom (R1) was recorded, and the photo-thermal response was calculated. The outcome of this characterization led to the following conclusions: (1) There were significant differences in photo-thermal response among the different ecotypes. High-latitude ecotypes were less sensitive to the independent- and interactive-photo-thermal effects than low-latitude ecotypes; and (2) there was an interaction between photoperiod and temperature, with the effect of photoperiod on thermal sensitivity being greater under the LD than the SD condition, and with the effect of temperature on photoperiodic sensitivity being greater under the LT than the HT condition. The strengths and limitations of this study are discussed in terms of implications for current knowledge and future research directions. The study provides better understanding of photo-thermal effects on flowering in soybean genotypes from different ecotypes throughout China and of the implications for their adaptation more broadly.
    Molecular diversity and genetic structure of 380 sweetpotato accessions as revealed by SSR markers
    YANG Xin-sun, SU Wen-jin, WANG Lian-jun, LEI Jian, CHAI Sha-sha, LIU Qing-chang
    2015, 14(4): 633-641.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60794-2
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Sweetpotato, Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam., is an important food crop widely cultivated in the world. Evaluation of genetic relationships among diverse cultivars and landraces is necessary for efficient exploitation of genetic diversity in the existing germplasm resources. In the present study, a collection of 380 sweetpotato accessions assembled from different agro-climatic zones of China and other countries were genotyped using 30 SSR primer pairs. Model-based structure analysis separated the germplasm into three populations, P1, P2 and P3, containing 228, 133 and 19 accessions, respectively, which was consistent with the results of phylogenic and principal component analysis (PCA). Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) revealed significant genetic differentiation among inferred populations, accounting for 16.47% of the total molecular variance, however, the differences between the regions were not significant, the total variation were due to the differences between the genotypes within the population. Pairwise fixation index (FST) suggested that populations P1 and P3 had the highest differentiation, while populations P1 and P2 had the lowest differentiation. The diversity among populations was wide, which confirmed the genetic distinction of populations. Through comparing model-based structure and domestication-based classification, it was found that the accessions of population P1 mainly belonged to modern cultivars, and the accessions of populations P2 and P3 basically corresponded to landraces, by which we suggest that modern cultivars maybe had experienced a two-step domestication history. Our results illustrated clear genetic relationships among 380 sweetpotato accessions, exhibiting the potential of accelerating the process of future sweetpotato breeding program by molecular marker based parental selection.
    Effect of high temperature on the expressions of genes encoding starch synthesis enzymes in developing rice endosperms
    CAO Zhen-zhen, PAN Gang, WANG Fu-biao, WEI Ke-su, LI Zhao-wei, SHI Chun-hai, GENG Wei, CHENG Fang-min
    2015, 14(4): 642-659.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60782-6
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    High temperature is the major environmental factor affecting grain starch properties of cooking rice cultivars. In this study, two non-waxy indica rice genotypes, cv. 9311 and its mutant with extremely high amylose phenotype (9311eha) were used to study the differential expressions of genes in starch synthesis and their responses to high temperature (HT). Significant increase in apparent amylose content and hot-water-soluble starch content in mutant 9311eha were genetically caused by a substitution from AGTTATA to AGGTATA at the leader intron 5´ splice site in Wx gene. This mutation resulted in different mRNA transcript levels, mRNA splicing efficiencies and protein levels of Wx between the two rice genotypes, which also lead to the genotype-dependent alteration in the temporal pattern of Wx transcription and granule-bound starch synthase (GBSS) activity in response to HT. However, changes in the activities of other starch synthesizing enzymes and their expressions of distinct isoform genes were not significant with the Wx gene mutation, thus only minor difference in the particle size of starch granule, chain-length distribution and gelatinization enthalpy were found between the two genotypes. The temporal- specific expression of multiple isoform genes responsive to different temperature regiments indicated that the reduction of GBSS transcript expression under HT was generally accompanied by the decreased expressions of SSSIIa, SSSIIIa and SBEIIb. Consequently, high temperature-ripened grains in 9311eha showed high proportion of intermediate and long B chains and somewhat lower level of short A chain compared to the wildtype. The temperature-dependent alteration of amylose content was not only attributed to the reduced expression of GBSS, but also associated with the complimentary effect of SSSIIa and SBEIIb.
    SPEIPM-based research on drought impact on maize yield in North China Plain
    MING Bo, GUO Yin-qiao, TAO Hong-bin, LIU Guang-zhou, LI Shao-kun, WANG Pu
    2015, 14(4): 660-669.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60778-4
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The calculation method of potential evapotranspiration (PET) was improved by adopting a more reliable PET estimate based on the Penman-Monteith equation into the standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI) in this study (SPEIPM). This improvement increased the applicability of SPEI in North China Plain (NCP). The historic meteorological data during 1962–2011 were used to calculate SPEIPM. The detrended yields of maize from Hebei, Henan, Shandong, Beijing, and Tianjin provinces/cities of NCP were obtained by linear sliding average method. Then regression analysis was made to study the relationships between detrended yields and SPEI values. Different time scales were applied, and thus SPEIPM was mentioned as SPEIPMk-j (k=time scale, 1, 2, 3, 4,…, 24 mon; j=month, 1, 2, 3,..., 12), among which SPEIPM3-8 reflected the water condition from June to August, a period of heavy precipitation and vigorous growth of maize in NCP. SPEIPM3-8 was highly correlated with detrended yield in this region, which can effectively evaluate the effect of drought on maize yield. Additionally, this relationship becomes more significant in recent 20 yr. The regression model based on the SPEI series explained 64.8% of the variability of the annual detrended yield in Beijing, 45.2% in Henan, 58.6% in Shandong, and 54.6% in Hebei. Moreover, when SPEIPM3-8 is in the range of –0.6 to 1.1, –0.9 to 0.8 and –0.8 to 2.3, the detrended yield increases in Shandong, Henan and Beijing. The yield increasing range was during normal water condition in Shandong and Henan, where precipitation was abundant. It indicated that the field management matched well with local water condition and thus allowed stable and high yield. Maize yield increase in these two provinces in the future can be realized by further improving water use efficiency and enhancing the stress resistance as well as yield stability. In Hebei and Beijing, the precipitation is less and thus the normal water condition cannot meet the high yield target. Increasing of water input and improving water use efficiency are both strategies for future yield increase. As global climate change became stronger and yield demands increased, the relationship between drought and maize yield became much closer in NCP too. The research of drought monitoring method and strategies for yield increase should be enhanced in the future, so as to provide strong supports for food security and agricultural sustainable development in China. Received 12
    Nutrient deficiency limits population development, yield formation, and nutrient uptake of direct sown winter oilseed rape
    WANG Yin, LIU Tao, LI Xiao-kun, REN Tao, CONG Ri-huan, LU Jian-wei
    2015, 14(4): 670-680.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60798-X
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Direct-sowing establishment method has great significance in improving winter oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) production and guaranteeing edible oil security in China. However, nutrient responses on direct sown winter oilseed rape (DOR) performance and population development dynamic are still not well understood. Therefore, five on-farm experiments were conducted in the reaches of the Yangtze River (RYR) to determine the effects of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) deficiencies on population density, dry matter production, nutrient uptake, seed yield, and yield components of DOR plants. Four fertilization treatments included the balanced NPK application treatment (NPK, 180 kg N, 39.3 kg P, 100 kg K, and 1.8 kg borax ha–1) and three nutrient deficiency treatments based on the NPK treatment, i.e., –N, –P, and –K. The results indicated that DOR population density declined gradually throughout the growing season, especially at over-wintering and pod-development stages. Nutrient deficiency decreased nutrient concentration in DOR plants, limited dry matter production and nutrient uptake, and thereby exacerbated density reduction during plants growth. The poor individual growth and reduced population density together decreased seed yield in the nutrient deficiency treatment. Averaged across all the experiments, seed yield reduced 61% by N deficiency, 38.3% by P deficiency, and 14.4% by K deficiency. The negative effects of nutrient deficiency on DOR performances followed the order of –N>–P>–K, and the effects were various among different nutrient deficiencies. Although N deficiency improved DOR emergence, but it seriously limited dry matter production and nutrient uptake, which in turn led to substantial plants death and therefore resulted in a very low harvested density. The P deficiency significantly reduced initial density, limited plants growth, and exacerbated density reduction. The K deficiency mainly decreased individual growth and yield, but did not affect density dynamic. Our results highlighted the importance of balanced NPK application in DOR production, suggesting that management strategy of these nutrients should be comprehensively considered with an aim to build an appropriate population structure with balanced plant density and individual growth.
    Crop Genetics · Breeding · Germplasm Resources
    Effects of progressive drought on photosynthesis and partitioning of absorbed light in apple trees
    MA Ping, BAI Tuan-hui and MA Feng-wang
    2015, 14(4): 681-690.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60871-6
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    To understand how drought stress affects CO2 assimilation and energy partitioning in apple (Malus domestica Borkh.), we investigated photosynthesis and photo-protective mechanisms when irrigation was withheld from potted Fuji trees. As the drought progressing, soil relative water content (SRWC) decreased from 87 to 24% in 15 d; this combined the decreasing in leaf relative water content (LRWC), net photosynthesis rate (Pn) and stomatal conductance (Gs). However, the concentrations of chlorophylls (Chl) remained unchanged while Pn values were declining. Photochemistry reactions were slightly down-regulated only under severe drought. Rubisco activity was significantly decreased as drought conditions became more severe. The actual efficiency of photosystem II (ΦPSII) was diminished as drought became more intense. Consequently, xanthophyll-regulated dissipation of thermal energy was greatly enhanced. Simultaneously, the ratio of ΦPSII to the quantum yield of carbon metabolism, which is measured under non-photorespiratory conditions, increased in parallel with drought severity. Our results indicate that, under progressive drought stress, the reduction in photosynthesis in apple leaves can be attributed primarily to stomatal limitations and the inhibited capacity for CO2 fixation. Xanthophyll cycle-dependent thermal dissipation and the Mehler reaction are the most important pathways for dispersing excess energy from apple leaves during periods of drought stress.
    Plant Protection
    Inhibitory effect of chitosan on growth of the fungal phytopathogen, Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, and sclerotinia rot of carrot
    WANG Qing, ZUO Jin-hua, WANG Qian, NA Yang, GAO Li-pu
    2015, 14(4): 691-697.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60800-5
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The antifungal activity of chitosan on a common fungal phytopathogen, Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, and the control effect on sclerotinia rot of carrot were investigated. Mycelial growth and fungal biomass were strongly inhibited by chitosan. Using propidium iodide stain combined with fluorescent microscopy, the plasma membrane of chitosan-treated S. sclerotiorum mycelia was observed to be markedly damaged. Concomitantly, protein leakage and lipid peroxidation was also found to be significantly higher in chitosan-treated mycelia compared to the control. Chitosan provided an effective control of sclerotinia rot of carrot, with induction of activity of defense-related enzymes including polyphenoloxidase and peroxidase. These data suggest that the effects of chitosan on sclerotinia rot of carrot may be associated with the direct damage to the plasma membrane and lipid peroxidation of S. sclerotiorum, and the elicitation of defense response in carrot.
    Cloning and RNA interference analysis of the salivary protein C002 gene in Schizaphis graminum
    ZHANG Yong, FAN Jia, SUN Jing-rui, CHEN Ju-lian
    2015, 14(4): 698-705.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60822-4
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The full-length cDNA of functionally-unknown salivary protein C002 in Schizaphis graminum was cloned using rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) and designated as SgC002 (GenBank accession no. KC977563). It is 767 bp long and encodes a protein of 190 amino acid residues with a predicted mass of 21.5 kDa and a predicted cleavage site of N-terminal signal peptide between the 24th and the 25th residues. SgC002 is specifically expressed in salivary gland with the highest level at the 2nd instar. Introducing SgC002-specific 476-siRNA, but not 546-siRNA to aphids through artificial diet significantly suppressed SgC002 expression. Silencing SgC002 gene led to lethality of the aphid on wheat plants, but not on pure artificial diet. Our study demonstrated that artificial diet-mediated RNAi can be a useful tool for research on the roles of genes in aphid salivary gland, and also provided new insights into the characteristics of C002 in wheat aphids.
    Spectral sensitivity of the compound eyes of Anomala corpulenta motschulsky (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea)
    Jiang Yue-li, Guo Yu-yuan, Wu Yu-qing, Li Tong, Duan Yun, Miao Jin, Gong Zhong-jun, Huang Zhi-juan
    2015, 14(4): 706-713.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60863-7
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The scarab beetle, Anomala corpulenta Motschulsky (Coleoptera: Scarabaeoidea), is a widespread and destructive pest in China. Vision is one of the most important means of acquiring information about the external environment. In order to contribute to the understanding of the perception of visual stimuli in this species, the light sensitivity and spectral responses of the scarab beetle, A. corpulenta, were measured by using an electroretinogram (ERG) technique. In total, 14 monochromatic light intensities, between 340 and 605 nm, were applied to the compound eyes of A. corpulenta under varying levels of adaptation to dark and light conditions. The results showed that all light stimuli induced an ERG response, with varied amplitudes. The spectral sensitivity curve of dark-adapted eyes showed one major peak (~400 nm; near-ultraviolet), a secondary peak (from 498 to 562 nm; yellow-green) and the third peakat 460 nm. By contrast, in light-adapted eyes, only a near-UV peak was observed. From these results, we conclude that the compound eye of A. corpulenta is likely to have at least three spectral types of photoreceptor. Significance of differences were also recorded in the responses of male and female compound eyes, as well as diurnally and nocturnally. The amplitude of ERG in response to white-light stimuli varied with the light intensity: The stronger the luminance, the higher the ERG value. This suggests that the compound eye of A. corpulenta adapts quickly to changing light conditions, enabling A. corpulenta to maintain nocturnal activities.
    Use of chlorophyll fluorescence and P700 absorbance to rapidly detect glyphosate resistance in goosegrass (Eleusine indica)
    ZHANG Tai-jie, FENG Li, TIAN Xing-shan, YANG Cai-hong, GAO Jia-dong
    2015, 14(4): 714-723.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60869-8
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The rapid detection of glyphosate resistance in goosegrass (Eleusine indica) will enhance our ability to respond to new resistant populations of this major weed. Chlorophyll fluorescence (Fluo) and P700 (reaction center chlorophyll of photosystem I) absorbance were analyzed in one biotype of goosegrass that is resistant to glyphosate and in another that remains sensitive to the herbicide. Both biotypes were treated with a foliar spray of glyphosate. Differences in photosystem II maximum quantum yield (Fv/Fm), effective photochemical quantum yield (Y(II)), and non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) between the biotypes increased over time. Values for Fv/Fm and Y(II) differed between the two biotypes 24 h after treatment (HAT). Differentiated activities and energy dissipation processes of photosystem II (PSII) and energy dissipation processes of photosystem I (PSI) were manifested in the two biotypes 24 HAT with 20 mmol L–1 glyphosate. Differentiated energy dissipation processes of PSI were still apparent 24 HAT with 200 mmol L–1 glyphosate. These results indicate that the Fluo parameters related to PSII activity and energy dissipation and the P700 parameters related to energy dissipation are suitable indicators that enable rapid detection of glyphosate resistance in goosegrass.
    A new pathotype characterization of Daxing and Huangyuan populations of cereal cyst nematode (Heterodera avenae) in China
    CUI Jiang-kuan, HUANG Wen-kun, PENG Huan, LIU Shi-ming, WANG Gao-feng, KONG Lin-an, PENG De-liang
    2015, 14(4): 724-731.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60982-5
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The cereal cyst nematode (CCN, Heteroder aavenae) causes serious yield loss on cereal crops, especially wheat, worldwide. Daxing population in Beijing City and Huangyuan population in Qinghai Province, China, are two CCN populations. In this study, the CCN pathotypes of Daxing and Huangyuan populations were characterized by tests on 23 standard “International Test Assortment” with the local species Wenmai 19 as the susceptible control. Tested materials were grouped by three nematode populations’ virulence on resistant genes (Rha1, Rha2, Rha3, Cre1) and nonresistant genes, varieties and lines. Both Daxing and Huangyuan populations were avirulent to Ortolan (Ha1). Barley cvs. Ortolan, Siri, Morocco, Bajo Aragon 1-1, and Martin 403-2 were all resistant to both populations. Cultivars Herta, Harlan 43 and wheat Iskamish-K-2-light were all susceptible to Huangyuan population, all of them, however, were resistant to Daxing population. The other five oats were all resistant to the two tested CCN populations. Except Iskamisch K-2-light, all the other wheat cultivars (Capa, Loros×Koga, AUS 10894, and Psathias) were susceptible to Daxing population. Because the pathotypes of the two tested CCN populations in Beijing and Qinghai were not identical to any of the 13 pathotypes previously characterized by the test assortment, we classified Daxing and Huangyuan populations as the new pathotypes, named Ha91.
    Animal Science · Veterinary Science
    Characterization of dual enzyme resulted from bicistronic expression of two β-glucanases in porcine cells
    ZHANG Xian-wei, LI Zi-cong, MENG Fan-ming, WANG De-hua, LIU De-wu, HE Xiao-yan, SUN Yue, BAI Yin-shan, WU Zhen-fang
    2015, 14(4): 732-740.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60788-7
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Many animal feed grains contain high β-glucan in the cell wall. Pigs do not secret β-glucanase to degrade the β-glucan in their feed. The indigestible β-glucan not only blocks the release of nutrients from the grain cell wall, but also increases the digesta viscosity in the gastrointestinal tract of pigs. Therefore, dietary β-glucan significantly inhibits nutrient digestion and absorption in pigs. Transgenic expression of β-glucanase in the digestive tract of pigs may offer a solution to solve this problem. In the current study, four arti?cial codon-optimized β-glucanases genes was prepared and expressed in porcine cells. Only pBgA and pEgx showed high activity in transfected pig kidney cells. To improve the pH range and pH stability of β-glucanase, the two β-glucanases, pBgA and pEgx, were co-expressed in pig kidney cells and salivary gland cells by Linker A3 or 2A peptide. The resulting dual enzymes of pBgA3pEg and pBg2ApEg showed significantly enlarged pH range and significantly increased pH stability, as compared to parental enzymes. These results provide useful data for future study on increasing the feed digestibility of pigs by transgenic expression of β-glucanase in their salivary glands.
    Novel SNP of EPAS1 gene associated with higher hemoglobin concentration revealed the hypoxia adaptation of yak (Bos grunniens)
    WU Xiao-yun, DING Xue-zhi, CHU Min, GUO Xian, BAO Peng-jia, LIANG Chun-nian, YAN Ping
    2015, 14(4): 741-748.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60854-6
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Endothelial PAS domain protein 1 gene (EPAS1) is a key transcription factor that activates the expression of oxygen-regulated genes. In this study, in order to better understand the effects of EPAS1 gene on hematologic parameters in yak, we firstly quantified the tissue expression patterns for EPAS1 mRNA of yak, identified polymorphism in this gene and evaluated its association with hematologic parameters. Expression of EPAS1 mRNA was detected in all eight tissues (heart, liver, lung, spleen, pancreas, kidney, muscles and ovary). The expressions of EPAS1 in lung and pancreas were extremely higher than other tissues examined. Three novel single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) (g.83052 C>T, g.83065 G>A and g.83067 C>A) within the EPAS1 were identified and genotyped in Pali (PL), Gannan (GN) and Tianzhu White (TZW) yak breeds. Significant higher frequencies of the AA and GA genotypes and A allele of the g.83065 G>A were observed in the PL and GN breeds than that in the TZW breed (P<0.01). Association analysis of the PL breed indicated that the g.83065 G>A polymorphism was significantly associated with hemoglobin (HGB) concentration in yaks (P<0.05). Individuals with genotype AA had significantly higher HGB concentration (P<0.05) than those with genotype GA and GG. All these results will help our further understanding of biological functional of yak EPAS1 gene in responding to hypoxia and also indicate EPAS1 might contribute to the hypoxia adaptation of the yak.
    Effects of dietary yeast β-glucan on nutrient digestibility and serum profiles in pre-ruminant Holstein calves
    MA Tao, TU Yan, ZHANG Nai-feng, GUO Jiang-peng, DENG Kai-dong, ZHOU Yi, YUN Qiang, DIAO Qi-yu
    2015, 14(4): 749-757.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60843-1
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    This study aimed to investigate the effects of dietary supplementation of yeast β-glucan on the nutrient digestibility and serum profiles in pre-ruminant Holstein calves. Forty-two neonatal Holstein calves ((39.6±4.2) kg) were randomly allotted to six groups, and each was offered one of the following diets: a basal diet (control) or the basal diet supplemented with 25, 50, 75, 100 or 200 mg of yeast β-glucan kg–1 feed (dry matter basis). The basal diet consisted of a milk replacer and a starter feed. The trial lasted for 56 d. Two digestibility trials were conducted from d 14 to 20 and from d 42 to 48. Blood samples were collected on d 0, 14, 28 and 42 for serum profile analyses. On d 56, three calves from each group were slaughtered, and intestinal samples were collected to assess the villous height, crypt depth and mucosal thickness. Although feed intake was not affected by dietary treatment (P>0.05), the average daily gain (ADG) and gain-to-feed ratios were higher (P<0.05) for the calves fed 75 mg of yeast β-glucan kg–1 feed than those in the other groups. The supplementation of yeast β-glucan at 75 mg kg–1 feed increased the apparent digestibility of dry matter (DM), crude protein (CP), ether extract (EE), and phosphorus (P) (P<0.05) and the ratio of intestinal villous height to crypt depth (V/C) (P<0.05) when compared with the control group. No effects of yeast β-glucan on the serum concentrations of total protein (TP), albumin (ALB), serum urea nitrogen (SUN) and glucose (GLU) were observed (P>0.05). Compared with the control group, supplementation of yeast β-glucan decreased (P<0.05) the serum concentrations of triglycerides (TG) and total cholesterol (TC). The serum concentration of immunoglobulin G (IgG) and immunoglobulin M (IgM) increased quadratically (P<0.05), whereas the serum concentration of immunoglobulin A (IgA) was unaffected by dietary treatments (P>0.05). The supplementation of yeast β-glucan stimulated the enzymatic activity of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) (P<0.05) compared with the control group. The lysozyme (LYZ) concentration increased quadratically (P<0.05) with increasing yeast β-glucan levels. The results suggested that dietary supplementation of yeast β-glucan at 75 mg kg–1 feed improved nutrient digestibility, enhanced immunity by increasing the immunoglobulin concentration and stimulating ALP, and exerted no adverse effects on metabolism in pre-ruminant calves.
    Influence of gallic acid on porcine neutrophils phosphodiesterase 4, IL-6, TNF-α and rat arthritis model
    JIANG Dai-xun, ZHANG Mei-hua, ZHANG Qian, CHEN Yi-shan, MA Wen-jing, WU Wei-peng, MU Xiang
    2015, 14(4): 758-764.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60824-8
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Our previous studies showed that the anti-inflammatory effects of Paeonia lactiflora roots extract may be mediated, at least in part, through its gallic acid content, and this effect may be regulated in part by an inhibition on cAMP-phosphodiesterase (PDE). To explore the anti-inflammatory effect and mechanism, the influence of gallic acid on neutrophils PDE4 activity and expression, TNF-α and IL-6 content and rat arthritis model were further studied. PDE4 activity and gene express were calculated respectively by substrate cAMP change examined with HPLC and real-time RT-PCR. The concentration of IL-6 and TNF-α in supernatant were assayed by ELISA method. Model of rat arthritis was caused by complete Freund’s adjuvant. Results showed that gallic acid had a dose-dependent restraint on PDE4 activity of neutrophils in vitro, promoted significantly PDE4A expression (P<0.01), and had no influence on the expressions of PDE4B and 4D. However, PDE4C expression was not detected. Gallic acid could promote IL-6 release (P<0.05), and inhibit TNF-α release of neutrophils (P<0.05). The experiment in vivo showed that gallic acid had obvious restraint on local inflammation of animal model (P<0.05). Therefore, the anti-inflammatory effect of gallic acid may be mediated in part through an inhibition on PDE4 activity and further an increase of IL-6 and a decrease of TNF-α of neutrophils, and this effect seemed to have no relationship with PDE4 expression.
    Soil & Fertilization﹒Irrigation﹒Plant Nutrition﹒ Agro-Ecology & Environment
    Soil profile characteristics of high-productivity alluvial cambisols in the North China Plain
    LIU Hai-tao, LI Bao-guo, REN Tu-sheng
    2015, 14(4): 765-773.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60789-9
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    The North China Plain (NCP) is one of major breadbaskets in China. Crop growth and grain yield differ significantly with spatial variations of soil properties. This study aims to identify the key soil properties in relation to the grain yield for the winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)-maize (Zea mays L.) cropping system in a high-productivity farmland of the NCP. The field trials were conducted in three fields with different grain yield levels in Tai’an City, Shandong Province, China, during the 2009–2012 period. Consistent field management strategies were applied in the three fields. Fifty-one physical and chemical indicators of the soil profile as related to grain yield were evaluated. An approximate maximum of 17.8% annual average grain yield difference was observed in the fields during the period of 2009–2012. The soil indicators were classified into three clusters with specific functions using cluster analysis, and three key indicators were extracted from each cluster to characterize the different soil properties of three fields. The first cluster represented soil water retention capacity, and the key indicator was available soil water (ASW), which ranged from 153 to 187 mm in the 1.2 m profile and was correlated positively with grain yield. The second cluster represented soil water conductivity, as measured by saturated hydraulic conductivity (Ks). The higher yield field had a greater capacity to retain topsoil water for its lower Ks (1.9 cm d–1) in the 30–70 cm soil layer as compared to the lower yield field. The third cluster represented nutrient storage and supply, as indicated by the ratio of nutrient content to silt+clay content of the top soil layer. The ratio of soil organic matter (OM), total nitrogen (TN), available P, exchangeable K+ to silt+clay content in the 0–20 cm soil layer were 19.0 g kg–1, 1.6 g kg–1, 94.7 mg kg–1, 174.3 mg kg–1 in the higher yield field, respectively, and correlated positively with the grain yield. By characterizing the differences in soil properties among fields with different yield levels, this study offers the scientific basis for increasing grain yield potential by improving the soil conditions in the NCP.
    Aggregate stability and associated C and N in a silty loam soil as affected by organic material inputs
    LONG Pan, SUI Peng, GAO Wang-sheng, WANG Bin-bin, HUANG Jian-xiong, YAN Peng, ZOU Juan-xiu, YAN Ling-ling, CHEN Yuan-quan
    2015, 14(4): 774-787.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60796-6
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    To make recycling utilization of organic materials produced in various agricultural systems, five kinds of organic materials were applied in a field test, including crop straw (CS), biogas residue (BR), mushroom residue (MR), wine residue (WR), pig manure (PM), with a mineral fertilizer (CF) and a no-fertilizer (CK) treatment as a control. Our objectives were: i) to quantify the effects of organic materials on soil C and N accumulation; ii) to evaluate the effects of organic materials on soil aggregate stability, along with the total organic carbon (TOC), and N in different aggregate fractions; and iii) to assess the relationships among the organic material components, soil C and N, and C, N in aggregate fractions. The trial was conducted in Wuqiao County, Hebei Province, China. The organic materials were incorporated at an equal rate of C, and combined with a mineral fertilizer in amounts of 150 kg N ha-1, 26 kg P ha-1 and 124 kg K ha-1 respectively during each crop season of a wheat-maize rotation system. The inputted C quantity of each organic material treatment was equivalent to the total amount of C contained in the crop straw harvested in CS treatement in the previous season. TOC, N, water-stable aggregates, and aggregate-associated TOC and N were investigated. The results showed that organic material incorporation increased soil aggregation and stabilization. On average, the soil macroaggregate proportion increased by 14%, the microaggregate proportion increased by 3%, and mean-weight diameter (MWD) increased by 20%. TOC content followed the order of PM>WR>MR>BR>CS>CK>CF; N content followed the order WR>PM>MR>BR>CS>CF>CK. No significant correlation was found between TOC, N, and the quality of organic material. Soil silt and clay particles contained the largest part of TOC, whereas the small macroaggregate fraction was the most sensitive to organic materials. Our results indicate that PM and WR exerted better effects on soil C and N accumulation, followed by MR and BR, suggesting that organic materials from ex situ farmland could promote soil quality more as compared to straw returned in situ.
    Interactions of water and nitrogen addition on soil microbial community composition and functional diversity depending on the inter-annual precipitation in a Chinese steppe
    SUN Liang-jie, QI Yu-chun, DONG Yun-she, HE Ya-ting, PENG Qin, LIU Xin-chao, JIA Jun-qiang, GUO Shu-fang, CAO Cong-cong
    2015, 14(4): 788-799.  DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(14)60773-5
    Abstract ( )   PDF in ScienceDirect  
    Water and nitrogen are primary limiting factors in semiarid grassland ecosystems. Our knowledge is still poor regarding the interactive effects of water and N addition on soil microbial communities, although this information is crucial to reveal the mechanisms of the terrestrial ecosystem response to global changes. We addressed this problem by conducting a field experiment with a 15% surplus of the average rainfall under three levels of N addition (50, 100, and 200 kg N ha–1 yr–1) in two consecutive years in Inner Mongolia, China. Microbial community composition and functional diversity were analyzed based on phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA) and BIOLOG techniques, respectively. The results showed that water addition did not affect the soil microbial community composition, but much more yearly precipitation generally decreased the PLFA concentration, which implied a fast response of soil microbes to changes of water condition. Soil fungi was depressed only by N addition at the high level (200 kg N ha–1 yr–1) and without hydrologic leaching, while Gram-negative bacteria was suppressed probably by plant competition at high level N addition but with hydrologic leaching. The study found unilateral positive/negative interactions between water and N addition in affecting soil microbial community, however, climate condition (precipitation) could be a significant factor in disturbing the interactions. This study highlighted that: (1) The sustained effect of pulsed water addition was minimal on the soil microbial community composition but significant on the microbial community functional diversity and (2) the complex interaction between water and N addition on soil microbial community related to the inter-annual variation of the climate and plant response.