ResearchPad - legumes https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Development of plasma and whole blood taurine reference ranges and identification of dietary features associated with taurine deficiency and dilated cardiomyopathy in golden retrievers: A prospective, observational study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14758 A surge in Food and Drug Administration (FDA) consumer complaints identified concerns that legume-rich, grain-free diets were associated with nutritionally-mediated dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Golden retrievers represent the most reported breed affected by this condition and previous studies documented the disease is responsive to dietary change and taurine supplementation. Although dietary findings across cases are compelling, prospective studies with control groups are lacking. The role of diet in developing taurine deficiency and echocardiographic changes consistent with DCM in healthy dogs is unknown.ObjectivesWe hypothesized that golden retrievers eating non-traditional diets are at a higher risk of having taurine deficiency and nutritionally-mediated DCM compared with those eating traditional commercial diets. We aimed to compare taurine concentrations and echocardiographic indices of systolic function between golden retrievers in each diet group and elucidate associations between diet and these variables. Additionally, we aimed to generate breed-specific reference intervals for whole blood and plasma taurine concentrations.Animals86 golden retrievers.MethodsGolden retrievers eating traditional or non-traditional diets were evaluated and diet history, taurine concentrations and echocardiographic data were collected. Dietary features, taurine concentrations and echocardiographic findings were compared between diet groups. Relative risks were calculated for the likelihood of echocardiographic abnormalities and taurine deficiency in each diet group. Breed-specific reference intervals were constructed for taurine concentrations in dogs from the traditional diet group.ResultsGolden retrievers eating non-traditional diets had significantly lower taurine concentrations and more frequent systolic dysfunction. Breed specific reference intervals are higher than previously reported across breeds.ConclusionsNon-traditional diets, which were typically grain-free and contained legumes in this study, were significantly associated with and have increased relative risk for the identification of taurine deficiency and echocardiographic abnormalities consistent with nutritionally-mediated DCM. These findings were identifiable in the absence of clinical signs and support the findings of multiple previous studies and the ongoing FDA investigation. ]]> <![CDATA[Optimizing planting geometry for barley-Egyptian clover intercropping system in semi-arid sub-tropical climate]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14568 Intercropping legumes with cereals has been a common cropping system in short-season rainfed environments due to its increased productivity and sustainability. Intercropping barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) with Egyptian clover (Trifolium alexandrinum L.) could increase the grain yield of barley and improve resource use efficiency of the intercropping system. However, non-optimum planting geometry has been a hurdle in the adaptation of barley-based cropping systems. This study was aimed at optimizing the planting geometry, and assess the productivity and profitability of barley-Egyptian clover intercropping system. Ten different planting geometries, differing in number of rows of barley, width and number of irrigation furrows and planting method were tested. Intercropping barley with Egyptian clover improved 56–68% grain yield of barley compared with mono-cropped barley. Barley remained dominant crop in terms of aggressiveness, relative crowding coefficient and competitive ratio. The amount of water used was linearly increased with increasing size of barley strip from 3 to 8 rows. The highest water use efficiency (4.83 kg/cf3) was recorded for 8-row barley strip system with 120 cm irrigation furrows compared to rest of the planting geometries. In conclusion, 8-rows of barley planted on beds with Egyptian clover in 120 cm irrigation furrows had the highest net income and cost benefit ratio. Therefore, it is recommended that this planting geometry can be used for better economic returns of barley-Egyptian clover intercropping system. However, barley strips with >8 rows were not included in this study, which is limitation of the current study. Therefore, future studies with >8 barley rows in strip should be conducted to infer the economic feasibility and profitability of wider barley strips.

]]>
<![CDATA[Impacts of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi on nutrient uptake, N2 fixation, N transfer, and growth in a wheat/faba bean intercropping system]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c900d39d5eed0c48407e3a9

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) can play a key role in natural and agricultural ecosystems affecting plant nutrition, soil biological activity and modifying the availability of nutrients by plants. This research aimed at expanding the knowledge of the role played by AMF in the uptake of macro- and micronutrients and N transfer (using a 15N stem-labelling method) in a faba bean/wheat intercropping system. It also investigates the role of AMF in biological N fixation (using the natural isotopic abundance method) in faba bean grown in pure stand and in mixture. Finally, it examines the role of AMF in driving competition and facilitation between faba bean and wheat. Durum wheat and faba bean were grown in pots (five pots per treatment) as sole crops or in mixture in the presence or absence of AMF. Root colonisation by AMF was greater in faba bean than in wheat and increased when species were mixed compared to pure stand (particularly for faba bean). Mycorrhizal symbiosis positively influenced root biomass, specific root length, and root density and increased the uptake of P, Fe, and Zn in wheat (both in pure stand and in mixture) but not in faba bean. Furthermore, AMF symbiosis increased the percentage of N derived from the atmosphere in the total N biomass of faba bean grown in mixture (+20%) but not in pure stand. Nitrogen transfer from faba bean to wheat was low (2.5–3.0 mg pot-1); inoculation with AMF increased N transfer by 20%. Overall, in terms of above- and belowground growth and uptake of nutrients, mycorrhization favoured the stronger competitor in the mixture (wheat) without negatively affecting the companion species (faba bean). Results of this study confirm the role of AMF in driving biological interactions among neighbouring plants.

]]>
<![CDATA[It’s a trap: Optimizing detection of rare small mammals]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c8823a9d5eed0c484638d89

Improving detection probabilities for rare species is critical when assessing presence or habitat associations. Our goal was to create a new small mammal trapping protocol that improved detection of rare species, such as the olive-backed pocket mouse (Perognathus fasciatus). We used three trap and bait types and trapped an area 4.4 times larger than the standard grid. We also assessed the effect of captures of non-target species on detection probability of pocket mice. Regardless of species, trap success was higher for Havaharts. We found that bait and trap type selection varied significantly by species, with pocket mice showing strongest selection for Havahart traps baited with bird seed. Increasing grid size, while maintaining a similar trapping effort, resulted in higher detection probability, although our analyses showed that effective grids can be about three-quarters of the size we use to achieve similar results. We were also able to demonstrate that by deploying a combination of different traps and baits it is possible to overcome the potential effect of non-target species (e.g., deer mice, Peromyscus maniculatus) on the detection probability of pocket mice. Our results show that simple changes to standard small-mammal trapping methods can dramatically increase the detectability of rare and elusive small mammals. Increasing detection probability of rare components of a community can improve the results and understanding of future studies.

]]>
<![CDATA[Biological soil crusts inhibit seed germination in a temperate pine barren ecosystem]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c76fe25d5eed0c484e5b5ce

Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are known to affect plants’ germination and seedling establishment in arid ecosystems, but their ecological role in more mesic climates is not so well-known. We tested the effects of moss-crusted versus uncrusted soils on seed germination dynamics in a temperate pine barren ecosystem. We conducted a 35-day laboratory assay of seed germination on moss-crusted soils versus uncrusted soils from the Albany (NY) Pine Bush Preserve. We compared total seed germination and the number of days to 50% of total germination of two herbaceous perennial forb species in each soil type. Three and five times more seeds germinated on uncrusted soil than on crusted soil for bush clover (Lespedeza capitata) and wild lupine (Lupinus perennis), respectively. Seeds of both species also germinated approximately 10 days earlier on uncrusted soil than on crusted soil. This study, and others in similar habitats, show that BSCs in mesic climates can influence germination and other early life-history stages of plants. We hope that further study of the interactions between BSCs and vascular plants in mesic climates will contribute to our understanding of the ecology of BSCs outside the arid and semiarid climates where they are more extensively studied.

]]>
<![CDATA[Averting wheat blast by implementing a ‘wheat holiday’: In search of alternative crops in West Bengal, India]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c76fe4ad5eed0c484e5b82c

The emergence of wheat-blast in Bangladesh in the 2015–16 wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) crop threatens the food security of South Asia. A potential spread of the disease from Bangladesh to India could have devastating impacts on India’s overall food security as wheat is its second most important staple food crop. West Bengal state in eastern India shares a 2,217 km-long border with Bangladesh and has a similar agro-ecology, enhancing the prospects of the disease entering India via West Bengal. The present study explores the possibility of a ‘wheat holiday’ policy in the nine border districts of West Bengal. Under the policy, farmers in these districts would stop wheat cultivation for at least two years. The present scoping study assesses the potential economic feasibility of alternative crops to wheat. Of the ten crops considered, maize, gram (chickpea), urad (black gram), rapeseed and mustard, and potatoes are found to be potentially feasible alternative crops. Any crop substitution would need support to ease the transition including addressing the challenges related to the management of alternative crops, ensuring adequate crop combinations and value chain development. Still, as wheat is a major staple, there is some urgency to support further research on disease epidemiology and forecasting, as well as the development and dissemination of blast-resistant wheat varieties across South Asia.

]]>
<![CDATA[Introgression of peanut smut resistance from landraces to elite peanut cultivars (Arachis hypogaea L.)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c67306ad5eed0c484f37ac6

Smut disease caused by the fungal pathogen Thecaphora frezii Carranza & Lindquist is threatening the peanut production in Argentina. Fungicides commonly used in the peanut crop have shown little or no effect controlling the disease, making it a priority to obtain peanut varieties resistant to smut. In this study, recombinant inbred lines (RILs) were developed from three crosses between three susceptible peanut elite cultivars (Arachis hypogaea L. subsp. hypogaea) and two resistant landraces (Arachis hypogaea L. subsp. fastigiata Waldron). Parents and RILs were evaluated under high inoculum pressure (12000 teliospores g-1 of soil) over three years. Disease resistance parameters showed a broad range of variation with incidence mean values ranging from 1.0 to 35.0% and disease severity index ranging from 0.01 to 0.30. Average heritability (h2) estimates of 0.61 to 0.73 indicated that resistance in the RILs was heritable, with several lines (4 to 7 from each cross) showing a high degree of resistance and stability over three years. Evidence of genetic transfer between genetically distinguishable germplasm (introgression in a broad sense) was further supported by simple-sequence repeats (SSRs) and Insertion/Deletion (InDel) marker genotyping. This is the first report of smut genetic resistance identified in peanut landraces and its introgression into elite peanut cultivars.

]]>
<![CDATA[An invasive legume increases perennial grass biomass: An indirect pathway for plant community change]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c57e68ed5eed0c484ef3703

The presence of native grasses in communities can suppress native forbs through competition and indirectly benefit these forbs by suppressing the invasion of highly competitive exotic species. We conducted a greenhouse experiment to examine the potential of direct and indirect interactions to influence the aboveground biomass of four native forb species in the presence of the native perennial grass Schizachyrium scoparium and exotic invasive Lespedeza cuneata. We examined patterns of growth for the invasive legume, the perennial grass, and four native species in four scenarios: 1) native species grown with the grass, 2) native species grown with the legume, 3) native species grown with both the grass and legume together, and 4) native species grown alone. Schizachyrium scoparium significantly decreased biomass of all forb species (p<0.05). In contrast, L. cuneata alone only significantly affected biomass of Asclepias tuberosa; L. cuneata increased the biomass of A. tuberosa only when the grass was present. When S. scoparium and L. cuneata were grown together, L. cuneata had significantly lower biomass (p = 0.007) and S. scoparium had significantly greater biomass (p = 0.002) than when each grew alone. These reciprocal effects suggest a potential pathway by which L. cuneata could alter forb diversity in grassland communities In this scenario, L. cuneata facilitates grass growth and competition with other natives. Our results emphasize the importance of monitoring interactions between exotic invasive plant species and dominant native species in grassland communities to understand pathways of plant community change.

]]>
<![CDATA[Evolution of SSR diversity from wild types to U.S. advanced cultivars in the Andean and Mesoamerican domestications of common bean (Phaseolus vulgaris)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c5ca2f4d5eed0c48441ee62

Progress in common bean breeding requires the exploitation of genetic variation among market classes, races and gene pools. The present study was conducted to determine the amount of genetic variation and the degree of relatedness among 192 selected common bean advanced cultivars using 58 simple-sequence-repeat markers (SSR) evenly distributed along the 11 linkage groups of the Phaseolus reference map. All the lines belonged to commercial seed type classes that are widely grown in the USA and include both dry bean and snap beans for the fresh and processing markets. Through population structure, principal components analyses, cluster analysis, and discriminant analysis of principal components (DAPC), Andean and Mesoamerican genotypes as well as most American commercial type classes could be distinguished. The genetic relationship among the commercial cultivars revealed by the SSR markers was generally in agreement with known pedigree data. The Mesoamerican cultivars were separated into three major groups—black, small white, and navy accessions clustered together in a distinct group, while great northern and pinto clustered in another group, showing mixed origin. The Andean cultivars were distributed in two different groups. The kidney market classes formed a single group, while the green bean accessions were distributed between the Andean and Mesoamerican groups, showing inter-gene pool genetic admixture. For a subset of 24 SSR markers, we compared and contrasted the genetic diversity of the commercial cultivars with those of wild and domesticated landrace accessions of common bean. An overall reduction in genetic diversity was observed in both gene pools, Andean and Mesoamerican, from wild to landraces to advanced cultivars. The limited diversity in the commercial cultivars suggests that an important goal of bean breeding programs should be to broaden the cultivated gene pool, particularly the genetic diversity of specific commercial classes, using the genetic variability present in common bean landraces.

]]>
<![CDATA[Limited effects of the maternal rearing environment on the behaviour and fitness of an insect herbivore and its natural enemy]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c424399d5eed0c4845e0779

The maternal rearing environment can affect offspring fitness or phenotype indirectly via ‘maternal effects’ and can also influence a mother’s behaviour and fecundity directly. However, it remains uncertain how the effects of the maternal rearing environment cascade through multiple trophic levels, such as in plant-insect herbivore-natural enemy interactions. Pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum) show differential fitness on host legume species, while generalist aphid parasitoids can show variable fitness on different host aphid species, suggesting that maternal effects could operate in a plant-aphid-parasitoid system. We tested whether the maternal rearing environment affected the behaviour and fitness of aphids by rearing aphids on two plant hosts that were either the same as or different from those experienced by the mothers. A similar approach was used to test the behaviour and fitness of parasitoid wasps in response to maternal rearing environment. Here, the host environment was manipulated at the plant or plant and aphid trophic levels for parasitoid wasps. We also quantified the quality of host plants for aphids and host aphids for parasitoid wasps. In choice tests, aphids and parasitoid wasps had no preference for the plant nor plant and aphid host environment on which they were reared. Aphid offspring experienced 50.8% higher intrinsic rates of population growth, 43.4% heavier offspring and lived 14.9% longer when feeding on bean plants compared to aphids feeding on pea plants, with little effect of the maternal rearing environment. Plant tissue nitrogen concentration varied by 21.3% in response to aphid mothers’ rearing environment, and these differences correlated with offspring fitness. Maternal effects in parasitoid wasps were only observed when both the plant and aphid host environment was changed: wasp offspring were heaviest by 10.9–73.5% when both they and their mothers developed in bean-reared pea aphids. Also, parasitoid wasp fecundity was highest by 38.4% when offspring were oviposited in the maternal rearing environment. These findings indicate that maternal effects have a relatively small contribution towards the outcome of plant-aphid-parasitoid interactions.

]]>
<![CDATA[Characterization and performance of castor bean lineages and parents at the UFRB germplasm bank]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3d0120d5eed0c48403885a

The objective of this work was to characterize 203 lineages and five parents of Ricinus communis L. from the germplasm bank at the Federal University of Recôncavo da Bahia (UFRB), which was established by the Genetic Improvement and Biotechnology Program (NBIO) at the Center for Agrarian, Environmental and Biological Sciences. The study used 35 morpho-agronomic descriptors, proposed by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply, and 12 quantitative descriptors suggested by NBIO. The experiment was conducted in a randomized block design, composed of four blocks, in the experimental field at UFRB in 2014. The frequency and entropy level of the qualitative descriptors were estimated with the Renyi procedure, and an analysis of variance was used for the quantitative descriptors. The analyses were made with the statistical program R. Of the qualitative morpho-agronomic descriptors evaluated, 22.86% had a high level of entropy (above 1.0), and all 12 quantitative descriptors showed significant differences. This indicates genetic variability in the germplasm bank and a satisfactory performance for most of the descriptors evaluated, as well as the possibility of direct and indirect use of the lineages and parents in genetic improvement programs of the species.

]]>
<![CDATA[Correlations between growth and wool quality traits of genetically divergent Australian lambs in response to canola or flaxseed oil supplementation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c37b7c4d5eed0c484490c47

The correlations between growth and wool traits in response to canola and flaxseed oil supplementation were evaluated in Australian prime lambs. Sixty dual-purpose prime lambs including purebred Merino and crossbred lambs were allocated to one of five treatments of lucerne hay basal diet supplemented with isocaloric and isonitrogenous wheat-based pellets. Treatments were: no oil inclusion (Control); 2.5% canola oil; 5% canola oil; 2.5% flaxseed oil and 5% flaxseed oil, with lamb groups balanced by breed and gender. Each lamb was daily supplemented with 1kg of pellets and had free access to lucerne hay and water throughout the 7-week feeding trial, after a 3-week adaptation. Individual animal basal and supplementary pellet feed intakes were recorded daily, while body conformation traits, body condition scores and liveweights were measured on days 0, 21, 35 and 49. The lambs were dye-banded on the mid-side and shorn before commencing the feeding trial and mid-side wool samples were collected from the same dye-banded area of each lamb at the end of the experiment. Correlations between wool quality traits and lamb performance were non-significant (P>0.05). Oil supplementation had no detrimental effect on lamb growth and wool quality traits (P > 0.05). Gender significantly affected wither height gain and fibre diameter. There were significant interactions between oil supplementation and lamb breed on chest girth. The correlations between clean fleece yield (CFY) and other wool quality traits were moderate ranging from 0.29 to 0.55. Moderate to high correlations between fibre diameter (FD) and other wool quality traits were detected (0.46–0.99) with the strongest relationship between FD and wool spinning fineness (SF). The relationship between CFY and wool comfort factor (CF) were positive, while negative relationships between CFY and the others were observed. A combination of 5% oil supplementation and genetics is an effective and strategic management tool for enhancing feed efficiency and growth performance without negative effects on wool quality in dual-purpose lamb production. This is a good outcome for dual-purpose sheep farmers. It essentially means the absorbed nutrients in supplemented lambs yielded good growth performance without any detrimental impact on wool quality; a win-win case of nutrient partitioning into the synthesis of muscle and wool without compromising either traits.

]]>
<![CDATA[Application of mechanical cardiopulmonary resuscitation devices and their value in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest: A retrospective analysis of the German Resuscitation Registry]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3667c7d5eed0c4841a63fd

Background

Cardiac arrest is an event with a limited prognosis which has not substantially changed since the first description of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in 1960. A promising new treatment approach may be mechanical CPR devices (mechanical CPR).

Methods

In a retrospective analysis of the German Resuscitation Registry between 2007–2014, we examined the outcome after using mechanical CPR on return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) in adults with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). We compared mechanical CPR to manual CPR. According to preclinical risk factors, we calculated the predicted ROSC-after-cardiac-arrest (RACA) score for each group and compared it to the rate of ROSC observed. Using multivariate analysis, we adjusted the influence of the devices’ application on ROSC for epidemiological factors and therapeutic measures.

Results

We included 19,609 patients in the study. ROSC was achieved in 51.5% of the mechanical CPR group (95%-CI 48.2–54.8%, ROSC expected 42.5%) and in 41.2% in the manual CPR group (95%-CI 40.4–41.9%, ROSC expected 39.2%). After multivariate adjustment, mechanical CPR was found to be an independent predictor of ROSC (OR 1.77; 95%-CI 1.48–2.12). Duration of CPR is a key determinant for achieving ROSC.

Conclusions

Mechanical CPR was associated with an increased rate of ROSC and when adjusted for risk factors appeared advantageous over manual CPR. Mechanical CPR devices may increase survival and should be considered in particular circumstances according to a physicians’ decision, especially during prolonged resuscitation.

]]>
<![CDATA[Defining ICR-Mo, an intrinsic colistin resistance determinant from Moraxella osloensis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b04368b463d7e0f0e6b97a4

Polymyxin is the last line of defense against severe infections caused by carbapenem-resistant gram-negative pathogens. The emergence of transferable MCR-1/2 polymyxin resistance greatly challenges the renewed interest in colistin (polymyxin E) for clinical treatments. Recent studies have suggested that Moraxella species are a putative reservoir for MCR-1/2 genetic determinants. Here, we report the functional definition of ICR-Mo from M. osloensis, a chromosomally encoded determinant of colistin resistance, in close relation to current MCR-1/2 family. ICR-Mo transmembrane protein was prepared and purified to homogeneity. Taken along with an in vitro enzymatic detection, MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry of bacterial lipid A pools determined that the ICR-Mo enzyme might exploit a possible “ping-pong” mechanism to accept the phosphoethanolamine (PEA) moiety from its donor phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) and then transfer it to the 1(or 4’)-phosphate position of lipid A via an ICR-Mo-bound PEA adduct. Structural decoration of LPS-lipid A by ICR-Mo renders the recipient strain of E. coli resistant to polymyxin. Domain swapping assays indicate that the two domains of ICR-Mo cannot be functionally-exchanged with its counterparts in MCR-1/2 and EptA, validating its phylogenetic position in a distinct set of MCR-like genes. Structure-guided functional mapping of ICR-Mo reveals a PE lipid substrate recognizing cavity having a role in enzymatic catalysis and the resultant conference of antibiotic resistance. Expression of icr-Mo in E. coli significantly prevents the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) induced by colistin. Taken together, our results define a member of a group of intrinsic colistin resistance genes phylogenetically close to the MCR-1/2 family, highlighting the evolution of transferable colistin resistance.

]]>
<![CDATA[Seasonality affects dietary diversity of school-age children in northern Ghana]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5aafbfd1463d7e7cbd91358b

Background and objectives

Dietary diversity score (DDS) is relatively easy to measure and is shown to be a very useful indicator of the probability of adequate micronutrient intake. Dietary diversity, however, is usually assessed during a single period and little is known about the effect of seasonality on it. This study investigates whether dietary diversity is influenced by seasonality.

Methods

Two cross-sectional surveys were conducted in two different seasons—dry season (October 2010) and rainy season (May 2011) among the same school-age children (SAC) in two rural schools in northern Ghana. The study population consisted of 228 school-age children. A qualitative 24-hour dietary recall was conducted in both seasons. Based on 13 food groups, a score of 1 was given if a child consumed a food item belonging to a particular food group, else 0. Individual scores were aggregated into DDS for each child. Differences in mean DDS between seasons were compared using linear mixed model analysis.

Results

The dietary pattern of the SAC was commonly plant foods with poor consumption of animal source foods. The mean DDS was significantly higher (P < 0.001) in the rainy season (6.95 ± 0.55) compared to the dry season (6.44 ± 0.55) after adjusting for potential confounders such as age, sex, occupation (household head and mother) and education of household head. The difference in mean DDS between dry and rainy seasons was mainly due to the difference in the consumption of Vitamin A-rich fruits and vegetables between the seasons. While vitamin A-rich fruits (64.0% vs. 0.9%; P < 0.0001) and vitamin A rich dark green leafy vegetables (52.6% vs. 23.3%, P < .0001) were consumed more during the rainy season than the dry season, more children consumed vitamin A-rich deep yellow, orange and red vegetables during the dry season than during the rainy season (73.7% vs. 36.4%, P <0.001).

Conclusion

Seasonality has an effect on DDS and may affect the quality of dietary intake of SAC; in such a context, it would be useful to measure DDS in different seasons. Since DDS is a proxy indicator of micronutrient intake, the difference in DDS may reflect in seasonal differences in dietary adequacy and further studies are needed to establish this.

]]>
<![CDATA[Agreements between Industry and Academia on Publication Rights: A Retrospective Study of Protocols and Publications of Randomized Clinical Trials]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9ecab0ee8fa60b6cf64

Background

Little is known about publication agreements between industry and academic investigators in trial protocols and the consistency of these agreements with corresponding statements in publications. We aimed to investigate (i) the existence and types of publication agreements in trial protocols, (ii) the completeness and consistency of the reporting of these agreements in subsequent publications, and (iii) the frequency of co-authorship by industry employees.

Methods and Findings

We used a retrospective cohort of randomized clinical trials (RCTs) based on archived protocols approved by six research ethics committees between 13 January 2000 and 25 November 2003. Only RCTs with industry involvement were eligible. We investigated the documentation of publication agreements in RCT protocols and statements in corresponding journal publications. Of 647 eligible RCT protocols, 456 (70.5%) mentioned an agreement regarding publication of results. Of these 456, 393 (86.2%) documented an industry partner’s right to disapprove or at least review proposed manuscripts; 39 (8.6%) agreements were without constraints of publication. The remaining 24 (5.3%) protocols referred to separate agreement documents not accessible to us. Of those 432 protocols with an accessible publication agreement, 268 (62.0%) trials were published. Most agreements documented in the protocol were not reported in the subsequent publication (197/268 [73.5%]). Of 71 agreements reported in publications, 52 (73.2%) were concordant with those documented in the protocol. In 14 of 37 (37.8%) publications in which statements suggested unrestricted publication rights, at least one co-author was an industry employee. In 25 protocol-publication pairs, author statements in publications suggested no constraints, but 18 corresponding protocols documented restricting agreements.

Conclusions

Publication agreements constraining academic authors’ independence are common. Journal articles seldom report on publication agreements, and, if they do, statements can be discrepant with the trial protocol.

]]>
<![CDATA[Characterization of salA, syrF, and syrG Genes and Attendant Regulatory Networks Involved in Plant Pathogenesis by Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae B728a]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da49ab0ee8fa60b8c76d

Pseudomonas syringae pv. syringae B728a, causal agent of brown spot on bean, is an economically important plant pathogen that utilizes extracellular signaling to initiate a lifestyle change from an epiphyte to a pathogen. LuxR regulatory proteins play an important role in the transcriptional regulation of a variety of biological processes involving two-component signaling, quorum sensing, and secondary metabolism. Analysis of the B728a genome identified 24 LuxR-like proteins, three of which are encoded by salA, syrF, and syrG located adjacent to the syringomycin gene cluster. The LuxR-like proteins encoded by these three genes exhibit a domain architecture that places them in a subfamily of LuxR-like proteins associated with regulation of secondary metabolism in B728a. Deletion mutants of salA, syrF, and syrG failed to produce syringomycin and displayed reduction of virulence on bean. The transcriptional start sites of salA, syrG, and syrF were located 63, 235, and 498 bp upstream of the start codons, respectively, using primer extension analysis. The predicted -10/-35 promoter regions of syrF and syrG were confirmed using site-directed mutagenesis and GFP reporters that showed conserved promoter sequences around the -35 promoter region. Overexpression analysis and GFP reporters identified SyrG as an upstream transcriptional activator of syrF, where both SyrG and SyrF activate promoters of syringomycin biosynthesis genes. This study shows that syrG and syrF encode important transcriptional regulators of syringomycin biosynthesis genes.

]]>
<![CDATA[Perivascular radiofrequency renal denervation lowers blood pressure and ameliorates cardiorenal fibrosis in spontaneously hypertensive rats]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db59ab0ee8fa60bdf159

Background

Catheter-based renal denervation (RDN) is a promising approach to treat hypertension, but innervation patterns limit the response to endovascular RDN and the post-procedural renal artery narrowing or stenosis questions the endovascular ablation strategy. This study was performed to investigate the anti-hypertensive and target organ protective effects of perivascular RDN in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR).

Methods

SHR and normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats were divided into sham group (n = 10), radiofrequency ablation group (n = 20) in which rats received bilateral perivascular ablation with radiofrequency energy (2 watts), and chemical (10% phenol in 95% ethanol) ablation group (n = 12). The tail-cuff blood pressure was measured before the ablation and on day 14 and day 28 after the procedure. The plasma levels of creatinine, urea nitrogen, and catecholamines, urinary excretion of electrolytes and protein, and myocardial and glomerular fibrosis were analyzed and compared among the groups on day 28 after the procedure.

Results

We identified that 2-watt is the optimal radiofrequency power for perivascular RDN in rats. Perivascular radiofrequency and chemical ablation achieved roughly comparable blood pressure reduction in SHR but not in WKY on day 14 and day 28 following the procedure. Radiofrequency-mediated ablation substantially destroyed the renal nerves surrounding the renal arteries of both SHR and WKY without damaging the renal arteries and diminished the expression of tyrosine hydroxylase, the enzyme marker for postganglionic sympathetic nerves. Additionally, perivascular radiofrequency ablation also decreased the plasma catecholamines of SHR. Interestingly, both radiofrequency and chemical ablation decreased the myocardial and glomerular fibrosis of SHR, while neither increased the plasma creatinine and blood urea nitrogen nor affected the urinary excretion of electrolytes and protein when compared to sham group.

Conclusions

Radiofrequency-mediated perivascular RDN may become a feasible procedure against hypertension, and provide similar anti-hypertensive and target organ protective effects as does the chemical ablation.

]]>
<![CDATA[Molecular Phylogeny of Gueldenstaedtia and Tibetia (Fabaceae) and Their Biogeographic Differentiation within Eastern Asia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da99ab0ee8fa60ba3164

Tibetia and Gueldenstaedtia are two morphologically similar and small genera in Fabaceae, with distributions largely corresponding to the Sino-Himalayan and Sino-Japanese subkingdoms in eastern Asia, respectively. These two genera have confusing relationships based on morphology; therefore, we aimed to provide a clear understanding of their phylogenetic and biogeographic evolution within eastern Asia. In our investigations we included 88 samples representing five Gueldenstaedtia species, five Tibetia species, and outgroup species were sequenced using five markers (nuclear: ITS; chloroplast: matK, trnL-F, psbA-trnH and rbcL). Our phylogenetic results support (1) the monophyly of Tibetia and of Gueldenstaedtia, respectively; and (2) that Tibetia and Gueldenstaedtia are sister genera. Additionally, our data identified that Tibetia species had much higher sequence variation than Gueldenstaedtia species. Our results suggest that the two genera were separated from each other about 17.23 million years ago, which is congruent with the Himalayan orogeny and the uplift of the Tibetan Plateau in the mid Miocene. The divergence of Tibetia and Gueldenstaedtia is strongly supported by the separation of the Sino-Himalayan and Sino-Japanese region within eastern Asia. In addition, the habitat heterogeneity may accelerate the molecular divergence of Tibetia in the Sino-Himalayan region.

]]>
<![CDATA[A moderate diet restriction during pregnancy alters the levels of endocannabinoids and endocannabinoid-related lipids in the hypothalamus, hippocampus and olfactory bulb of rat offspring in a sex-specific manner]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db53ab0ee8fa60bdc9ba

Undernutrition during pregnancy has been associated to increased vulnerability to develop metabolic and behavior alterations later in life. The endocannabinoid system might play an important role in these processes. Therefore, we investigated the effects of a moderate maternal calorie-restricted diet on the levels of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoyl glycerol (2-AG), arachidonic acid (AA) and the N-acylethanolamines (NAEs) anandamide (AEA), oleoylethanolamide (OEA) and palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) in the brain of newborn rat offspring. We focused on brain structures involved in metabolism, feeding behavior, as well as emotional and cognitive responses. Female Wistar rats were assigned during the entire pregnancy to either control diet (C) or restriction diet (R), consisting of a 20% calorie-restricted diet. Weight gain and caloric intake of rat dams were monitored and birth outcomes were assessed. 2-AG, AA and NAE levels were measured in hypothalamus, hippocampus and olfactory bulb of the offspring. R dams displayed lower gain weight from the middle pregnancy and consumed less calories during the entire pregnancy. Offspring from R dams were underweight at birth, but litter size was unaffected. In hypothalamus, R male offspring displayed decreased levels of AA and OEA, with no change in the levels of the endocannabinoids 2-AG and AEA. R female exhibited decreased 2-AG and PEA levels. The opposite was found in the hippocampus, where R male displayed increased 2-AG and AA levels, and R female exhibited elevated levels of AEA, AA and PEA. In the olfactory bulb, only R female presented decreased levels of AEA, AA and PEA. Therefore, a moderate diet restriction during the entire pregnancy alters differentially the endocannabinoids and/or endocannabinoid-related lipids in hypothalamus and hippocampus of the underweight offspring, similarly in both sexes, whereas sex-specific alterations occur in the olfactory bulb. Consequently, endocannabinoid and endocannabinoid-related lipid signaling alterations might be involved in the long-term and sexual dimorphism effects commonly observed after undernutrition and low birth weight.

]]>