You know that paper entitled Biodiversity redistribution under climate change: Impacts on ecosystems and human well-being, that we included in Brainfood a couple of weeks back?. The money quote was: “The indirect effects of climate change on food webs are
The ecology of forest soils is an important field of research due to the role of forests as carbon sinks. Consequently, a significant amount of information has been accumulated concerning their ecology, especially for temperate and boreal forests. Although most studies have focused on fungi, forest soil bacteria also play important roles in this environment. In forest soils, bacteria inhabit multiple habitats with specific properties, including bulk soil, rhizosphere, litter, and deadwood habitats, where their communities are shaped by nutrient availability and biotic interactions. Bacteria contribute to a range of essential soil processes involved in the cycling of carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus. They take part in the decomposition of dead plant biomass and are highly important for the decomposition of dead fungal mycelia. In rhizospheres of forest trees, bacteria interact with plant roots and mycorrhizal fungi as commensalists or mycorrhiza helpers. Bacteria also mediate multiple critical steps in the nitrogen cycle, including N fixation. Bacterial communities in forest soils respond to the effects of global change, such as climate warming, increased levels of carbon dioxide, or anthropogenic nitrogen deposition. This response, however, often reflects the specificities of each studied forest ecosystem, and it is still impossible to fully incorporate bacteria into predictive models. The understanding of bacterial ecology in forest soils has advanced dramatically in recent years, but it is still incomplete. The exact extent of the contribution of bacteria to forest ecosystem processes will be recognized only in the future, when the activities of all soil community members are studied simultaneously.
The day after the Global Tree Assessment is published by BGCI, which revealed there are about 60,000 tree species in the world, is also a good time to link again to the wonderful European Atlas of Forest Tree Species. Now
I’m not saying it’s the most important thing about it, but that oil pipeline that is planned for Minnesota will go straight through lakes which are sacred to the local Native American peoples, and which generate about 50% of the
If running the genebank at the John Innes Institute in the UK is too tame for you, why not check out the job at WorldVeg: WorldVeg is seeking a highly motivated and experienced Genebank Manager to manage the conservation of
Do you hold an animal germplasm (biological samples of reproductive material such as semen, embryos, etc.) or genomic collection (DNA, blood, tissue, etc.)? Then you probably want to take part in the Global Genetic Collection Survey for Animal Genetic Resources.
A whole bunch of interesting reports for your delectation today. From our friends Ola Westengen1, Teshome Hunduma and Kristine Skarbø at NORAGRIC comes “From Genebanks to Farmers. A study of approaches to introduce genebank material to farmers’ seed systems.” This
Near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS), a non-destructive and rapid analytical method, was used to examine the possibility of replacing a method for the large-scale screening of tomato seed viability. A total of 368 tomato seed samples were used for development and validation of an NIRS calibration model. The accelerating aging method (98 ± 2% R.H., 40 °C) was employed for preparation of a calibration set (n = 268) and a validation set (n = 100) with wider seed viability. Among the tomato NIRS calibration models tested, the modified partial least square (MPLS) regression produced the best equation model. Specifically, this model produced a higher RSQ (0.9446) and lower SEC (6.5012) during calibration and a higher 1-VR (0.9194) and lower SECV (7.8264) upon cross-validation compared to the other regression methods (PLS, PCR) tested in this study. Additionally, the SD/SECV was 3.53, which was greater than the criterion point of 3. External validation of this NIRS equation revealed a significant correlation between reference values and NIRS-estimated values based on the coefficient of determination (R2), the standard error of prediction (SEP (C)), and the ratio of performance to deviation (RPD = SD/SEP (C)), which were 0.94, 6.57, and 3.96, respectively. The external validation demonstrated that this model had predictive accuracy in tomato, indicating that it has the potential to replace the germination test.
No sooner did I blog about a paper which mapped diversity in a crop in Mexico across time, that I came across one mapping diversity in another crop in Turkey.1 The authors — a truly international bunch from the Bahri
Is it going to be forever difficult for small farmers to enter the market? SEEDcontrol is a project born from the partnership between formicablu, an Italian science communication agency, and Oxpeckers, a South African Center for Investigative Environmental Journalism. Specifically, the project has been designed by Elisabetta Tola and Fiona Macleod.
Fungi are a diverse eukaryotic group of degraders, pathogens, and symbionts, with many lineages known only from DNA sequences in soil, sediments, air, and water. We provide rough phylogenetic placement and principal niche analysis for >40 previously unrecognized fungal groups at the order and class level from global soil samples based on combined 18S (nSSU) and 28S (nLSU) rRNA gene sequences. Especially, Rozellomycota (Cryptomycota), Zygomycota s.lat, Ascomycota, and Basidiomycota are rich in novel fungal lineages, most of which exhibit distinct preferences for climate and soil pH.
This study uncovers the great phylogenetic richness of previously unrecognized order- to phylum-level fungal lineages. Most of these rare groups are distributed in different ecosystems of the world but exhibit distinct ecological preferences for climate or soil pH. Across the fungal kingdom, tropical and non-tropical habitats are equally likely to harbor novel groups. We advocate that a combination of traditional and high-throughput sequencing methods enable efficient recovery and phylogenetic placement of such unknown taxonomic groups.
Although discussions about the aims and methods of conservation probably date back as far as conservation itself, the ‘new conservation’ debate as such was sparked by Kareiva and Marvier’s 2012 article entitled What is conservation science? Two prominent positions have
Thanks to a Facebook post, I’ve just come across the “mapoteca digital” of CONABIO, the Comisión Nacional para el Conocimiento y Uso de la Biodiversidad of Mexico.1 It has point maps of the distribution of both wild and cultivated beans
Great to see the launch of Kew’s Plants of the World Online portal. In 2015, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew launched its first Science Strategy establishing its vision to document and understand global plant and fungal diversity and their uses,
Readers with a long memory will remember the Global Crop Loss Survey, which we blogged about here back in November. Just to remind everyone else: Over a period of three months (November 2016 – January 2017), 1142 responses from 216
Background. In February 2016, a new fungal disease was spotted in wheat fields across eight districts in Bangladesh. The epidemic spread to an estimated 15,000 hectares, about 16 % of the cultivated wheat area in Bangladesh, with yield losses reaching up to 100 %. Within weeks of the onset of the epidemic, we performed transcriptome sequencing of symptomatic leaf samples collected directly from Bangladeshi fields.
Results. Reinoculation of seedlings with strains isolated from infected wheat grains showed wheat blast symptoms on leaves of wheat but not rice. Our phylogenomic and population genomic analyses revealed that the wheat blast outbreak in Bangladesh was most likely caused by a wheat-infecting South American lineage of the blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae.
Conclusion. Our findings suggest that genomic surveillance can be rapidly applied to monitor plant disease outbreaks and provide valuable information regarding the identity and origin of the infectious agent.
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