Abstract in English:Spatial and temporal variability of soil water extraction from the root zone affect soil water balance determination. The number of sensors installed in the root zone in studies addressing water balance is still set arbitrarily. This study provided an investigation of the water extraction process by banana (Musa spp.) roots by (i) determining the variability of water extraction from the banana tree root zone, (ii) detecting differences in the estimation of evapotranspiration (ET) by the soil water balance method when the number of soil profiles monitored in the roots zone varies, (iii) and; determining the minimum number of Time Domain Reflectometry (TDR) probes needed to obtain ET precision and accuracy similar to that determined by a drainage lysimeter. The field experiment was conducted in Cruz das Almas, in the state of Bahia, Brazil, where a drainage lysimeter was installed on a banana plantation. The water extraction in the banana root zone was quantified by the water content variations monitored in 72 points by TDRs, with measurements at 15-min intervals. The variability of water extraction in the banana root zone was medium to high. The range of variability affects the reliability of the crop evapotranspiration calculation by the soil water balance method. To prevent an overestimation of banana evapotranspiration, the water extraction in the soil profile must be monitored with at least 16 TDR probes installed at a minimum distance of 0.9 m and a minimum depth of 0.7 m.
Abstract in English:In recent decades supplementation of animal feeds with exogenous fibrolytic enzymes has substantially improved digestibility and animal performance. However, information related to associated methane production is limited and inconsistent. This study evaluated the effect of cellulase and xylanase enzymes on in vitro methane production of Eragrostis curvula hay, maize (Zea mays) stover and a total mixed ration (TMR) at seven levels of the two enzymes. Feed samples were incubated for 2, 12, 24 and 48 h in an in vitro batch culture with buffer and rumen fluid, and fibrolytic enzymes. Gas production was measured using a pressure transducer connected to a data tracker, while methane gas was analysed using a gas chromatograph which was calibrated with standard CH4 and CO2. Increases in the level of enzyme application resulted in increases in gas volume, total volatile fatty acid (VFA) production, dry matter (DM) disappearance and associated increases in methane production. The linear increase in percentage and volume of methane production in tandem with increases in level of enzyme application might be due to increased fermentation, and organic matter degradability that resulted in a shift in VFA production towards acetate. Considering the efficiency of DM and neutral detergent fiber degradation and production of associated VFA with levels of enzymes, the use of 1 mg g−1 DM of enzyme can be a good option for the feeds tested. However, they cannot decrease methane production. It will be very important to consider other hydrogen sinks that can capture directly extra H+ produced by the addition of enzyme so that their supplementation could be very efficient and environmentally sound.
Abstract in English:In recent years, there has been an increase in interest in super high-density (SHD) olive (Olea europaea L.) groves because they offer early entry into production, increased productivity and the possibility of using modified mechanical vine harvesters. This study was carried out in a young SHD olive grove to examine vegetative, histo-anatomical and productive characteristics and oil quality of the Spanish Arbequina and Italian Maurino and Leccino cultivars, characterized by low, low-to-medium and high vigor, respectively. Arbequina had low vigor and limited development in height and width, as well as a high leaf/wood ratio. Maurino had a canopy volume similar to that of Arbequina and, despite a great tendency to grow in height, had low vigor, a rather compact vegetative habitus, but good lighting in the canopy and high production efficiency. In Maurino, a greater palisade parenchyma height and a larger exposed lateral surface area of the palisade parenchyma cells were observed. In the fourth year after planting, fruit production of Arbequina was about 30 % less than Leccino and Maurino. The oil content on a dry weight basis was slightly higher in Arbequina and Maurino than in Leccino. Oil quality was good for all cultivars.
Abstract in English:Apples (Malus domestica, Borkh.) which are not stored at low temperature or in a properly controlled atmosphere (CA) may have a high metabolic rate during the postharvest stage resulting in losses in quality. The aim of this study was to evaluate the quality of ‘Royal Gala’ apple fruit stored in accordance with a new method of dynamic controlled atmosphere (DCA).The respiratory quotient (RQ) was monitored at two temperatures which were then compared using a commercially available technology based on chlorophyll fluorescence DCA (DCA-CF) and static CA. Ethylene production and respiration rates were lower in apples stored in DCA than in CA, as a result of lower 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate oxidase activity, especially in apples stored in DCA-RQ2. Flesh firmness of apples stored in DCA did not differ from those stored in CA. Apples stored at 1 °C had less flesh breakdown occurrence and a high percentage of healthy fruit. ‘Royal Gala’ stored at DCA-RQ2 had less flesh breakdown than apples stored in CA; however, the apples stored in DCA-CF did not differ from those stored in DCA-RQ2 and CA. Apples stored at the highest RQ value (6 and 4), especially at 0.5 °C, had low O2 injury occurrence after storage. However the increase in temperature to 1.0 °C, reduced the occurrence of this disorder. Therefore, storage in DCA-RQ2 at 1 °C or DCA-CF at 0.5 °C are the recommendations of preference for ensuring maintenance of quality in ‘Royal Gala’ apples after eight months of storage.
Abstract in English:Value for Cultivation and Use (VCU) trials are undertaken when evaluating improved common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) lines, and knowledge of agronomic and market-related traits and disease reaction is instrumental in making cultivar recommendations. This study evaluates the yield, cooking time, grain color and reaction to anthracnose (Colletotrichum lindemuthianum), Fusarium wilt (Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. phaseoli) and Curtobacterium wilt (Curtobacterium flaccumfaciens pv. flaccumfaciens) of 25 common bean genotypes derived from the main common bean breeding programs in Brazil. Seventeen VCU trials were carried out in the rainy season, dry season and winter season from 2009 to 2011 in the state of São Paulo. Analyses of grain color and cooking time were initiated 60 days after harvest, and disease reaction analyses were performed in the laboratory under controlled conditions. In terms of yield, no genotype superior to the controls was observed for any of the seasons under consideration. Grains from the dry season exhibited better color, while the rainy season led to the shortest cooking times. The following genotypes BRS Esteio, BRS Esplendor and IAC Imperador were resistant to anthracnose, Fusarium wilt and Curtobacterium wilt and, in general, genotypes with lighter-colored grains were more susceptible to anthracnose and Fusarium wilt.
Abstract in English:Only a limited number of simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers is available for the genome of garlic (Allium sativum L.) despite the fact that SSR markers have become one of the most preferred DNA marker systems. To develop new SSR markers for the garlic genome, garlic expressed sequence tags (ESTs) at the publicly available GarlicEST database were screened for SSR motifs and a total of 132 SSR motifs were identified. Primer pairs were designed for 50 SSR motifs and 24 of these primer pairs were selected as SSR markers based on their consistent amplification patterns and polymorphisms. In addition, two SSR markers were developed from the sequences of garlic cDNA-AFLP fragments. The use of 26 EST-SSR markers for the assessment of genetic relationship was tested using 31 garlic genotypes. Twenty six EST-SSR markers amplified 130 polymorphic DNA fragments and the number of polymorphic alleles per SSR marker ranged from 2 to 13 with an average of 5 alleles. Observed heterozygosity and polymorphism information content (PIC) of the SSR markers were between 0.23 and 0.88, and 0.20 and 0.87, respectively. Twenty one out of the 31 garlic genotypes were analyzed in a previous study using AFLP markers and the garlic genotypes clustered together with AFLP markers were also grouped together with EST-SSR markers demonstrating high concordance between AFLP and EST-SSR marker systems and possible immediate application of EST-SSR markers for fingerprinting of garlic clones. EST-SSR markers could be used in genetic studies such as genetic mapping, association mapping, genetic diversity and comparison of the genomes of Allium species.
Abstract in English:Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) has global economic and environmental importance, but has often not been considered in soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merrill] breeding programs. Knowing the genetic diversity and structure of a population within a germoplasm represent a key step for breeding programs. This study aimed at determining the structure of the population and diversity of soybean with regard to BNF and protein content in grain. In total, 191 accessions were evaluated, including 171 commercial soybean cultivars, developed and released by public institutions and private companies in Brazil, and 20 ancestral lines. The genotypes were chosen to represent four genetic groups: 128 Brazilian public genotypes, 20 exotic, and 43 genotypes from private companies. Soybeans were genotyped with 22 SSR markers, previously described as associated with BNF and protein content. Genetic diversity was evaluated using the DARwin 5.0 software. Population structure was inferred by principal component analysis and by the STRUCTURE software. The accessions were distributed in two groups: one clustering approximately 50 % of the accessions, from Brazilian public and private companies; the other one clustering 45 % of the accessions, including Brazilian, exotic and private germoplasms. Some accessions (5 %) were not grouped in any cluster. Principal component analysis explained 29 % of the total variance and there was a tendency to cluster the accessions into two groups. Similar results were obtained with the STRUCTURE, clearly showing two subpopulations. There is variability for BNF and protein content amongst both modern germoplasms cultivated in Brazil and ancestral lines. This variability could be better explored in soybean breeding programs to improve these traits.
Abstract in English:The conservation, sustainable evaluation and use of cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) genetic resources are essential to the development of new commercial varieties. This study aimed to evaluate the quality of cassava roots and to estimate genetic variation and clustering in cassava germplasm using the Affinity Propagation algorithm (AP), which is based on the concept of "message passing" between data points. AP finds "exemplars" of each group and members of the input set representative of clusters. The genotypic data of 474 cassava accessions were evaluated over a period of two years for starch yield (StYi), root dry matter (DMC), amylose content (AML), and the level of cyanogenic compounds (CyC). The AP algorithm enabled the formation of nine diversity groups, whose number reflects the high genetic diversity of this germplasm. A high homogeneity of genetic distances was observed within all the groups, except for two groups in which there was a partial overlap caused mainly by a high variation of the CyC trait. In addition, no relationship between the genetic structure and CyC (sweet and bitter cassava) was observed. Analysis of variance of the nine clusters confirmed the presence of differences between the groups. Thus, the results of this study can be used in future breeding programs (hybridization or selection) to introduce new genetic variability into commercial cultivars to avoid problems related to low genetic variation and to improve the quality of cassava roots.
Abstract in English:Woolly apple aphid (WAA; Eriosoma lanigerum Hausm.) is a major insect pest that has significant economic impact on apple growers worldwide. Modern breeding technologies rely on several molecular tools to help breeders select genetic determinants for traits of interest. Consequently, there is a need for specific markers linked to the genes of interest. Apple scions and rootstocks have an additional barrier to the introduction of pest resistance genes due to the presence of self-incompatibility S-RNase alleles. The genetic characterization and early identification of these alleles can amplify the contribution of a breeding program to the selection of resistant genitors that are as compatible as possible. In this study, we identified the Er1 gene involved in the resistance to WAA in Malus prunifolia var. ringo, also known as ‘Maruba Kaido’ rootstock, and we analyzed the inheritance pattern of the WAA resistance Er1 gene in a segregant population derived from Malus pumila ‘M.9’ and ‘Maruba Kaido’ rootstocks. The self-incompatibility of S-RNase alleles S6S26 of ‘Maruba Kaido’ were also identified along with their inheritance pattern. We also confirmed the identification of the S1S3 alleles in the ‘M.9’ rootstock. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to characterize WAA resistance and RNase S-alleles in ‘Maruba Kaido’. Furthermore, we discuss the potential use of the genetic markers for these genes and their potential impact on apple breeding programs.
Abstract in English:Caused by Sclerotinia sclerotiorum, white mold is an important seed-transmitted disease of soybean (Glycine max). Incubation-based methods available for the detection and quantification of seed-borne inoculum such as the blotter test, paper roll and Neon-S assay are time-consuming, laborious, and not always sensitive. In this study, we developed and evaluated a molecular assay for the detection of S. sclerotiorum in soybean seeds using a species-specific PCR (polymerase chain reaction) primer set and seed soaking (without DNA extraction) for up to 72 h. The PCR products were amplified in all the samples infected with the pathogen, but not in the other samples of plant material or the other seed-borne fungi DNA. The minimum amount of DNA detected was 10 pg, or one artificially infested seed in a 400-seed sample (0.25 % fungal incidence) and one naturally infected seed in a 300-seed sample (0.33 % incidence). The PCR-based assay was rapid (< 9 h), did not require DNA extraction and was very sensitive.
Abstract in English:The flat pampas in the state of Santa Fe in Argentina have soils with high silt content, variable carbon content, and diverse degrees of structural degradation. Aggregate stability has been used as an indicator of the structural condition of the soil. This study aimed to quantify the effect of the addition of crop residues and root activity on the agents of aggregation and mechanisms of aggregate breakdown in soils with different carbon contents and textures cultivated under no-till. An experimental trial was conducted on a loamy soil (Typic Hapludoll, Santa Isabel series) and a silty soil (Typic Argiudoll, Esperanza series) under controlled conditions for 112 days with the following treatments: (i) with and without wheat plant growth and (ii) with and without addition of wheat residues. Soil structural stability by a method allowing for differentiation of aggregate breakdown by slaking, mechanical effect and microcracking, total organic carbon content, particulate organic carbon, glomalin and carbohydrate fractions was assessed. In general, the addition of residues and the presence of plant with active roots increased the presence of all aggregation agents and decreased aggregate breakdown processes in both soils. Soluble carbohydrates and proteins related to glomalin were the most important aggregating agents and their function was to reduce the magnitude of breakdown mechanisms, slaking and microcracking, evidencing a greater impact on the silty soil.
Abstract in English:Sweet cherry trees (Prunus avium L.) are susceptible to a range of diseases, but there have been no studies to date about the viral infection of sweet cherry trees in Spain. To determine the phytosanitary status of Spanish sweet cherry plantations, the incidence and leaf symptoms induced by Prune dwarf (PDV), Prunus necrotic ringspot (PNRSV) and Apple chlorotic leaf spot (ACLSV) viruses were investigated during 2009. Young leaf samples were taken from 350 sweet cherry trees, corresponding to 17 cultivars, and were analysed by double antibody sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (DAS-ELISA). To associate the leaf symptoms with the virus, 50 mature leaves from each infected tree were visually inspected during the summer. The ELISA results revealed that 72 % of sweet cherry trees were infected by at least one of the viruses. PDV occurred in all sampled cultivars and presented the highest infection rate, followed by ACLSV and PNRSV. A high number of trees showed asymptomatic, in both single and mixed infections. The leaf symptoms associated with the viruses involved generalized chlorosis around the midvein (PDV), chlorotic and dark brown necrotic ringspots on both secondary veins and intervein regions (PNRSV), chlorotic and reddish necrotic ringspots (ACLSV) and generalized interveinal chlorosis (PDV-PNRSV).
Abstract in English:The sombric horizon is a diagnostic subsurface horizon defined in the soil classification system of the United States (Soil Taxonomy) and FAO (WRB), used to classify the soil at different categorical levels. The sombric horizon has a soil color darker than the overlying surface(s) horizon(s), and must show illuvial humus accumulation features, though they are not associated with aluminum (Al), as in the spodic horizon, nor associated with sodium (Na), as in the natric horizon. There are also criteria to distinguish it from buried A horizons. However, since the first references and proposed concept of the sombric horizon in African soils made by Sys and co-workers in the 1960s, and adopted by the Soil Taxonomy edition of 1975, few modifications have been made to its definition. Moreover, the pedogenic process involved in illuvial humus accumulation in these horizons remains inadequately clarified, making the distinction between the sombric and spodic or buried A horizon difficult and unclear. This review reports the historical evolution of the sombric horizon concept, its definition and inconsistencies under different soil classification systems, and the current hypothesis, together with its fragilities, proposed to explain the soil illuvial humus accumulation. Although it is recognized that further research is necessary, alternative criteria are proposed for the definition of the sombric horizon in the Brazilian System of Soil Classification.