1,281 research outputs found

    The relationship between chlorophyllous spores and mycorrhizal associations in ferns: evidence from an evolutionary approach

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    Premise: Approximately 14% of all fern species have physiologically active chlorophyllous spores that are much more short-lived than the more common and dormant achlorophyllous spores. Most chlorophyllous-spored species (70%) are epiphytes and account for almost 37% of all epiphytic ferns. Chlorophyllous-spored ferns are also overrepresented among fern species in habitats with waterlogged soils, of which nearly 60% have chlorophyllous spores. Ferns in these disparate habitat types also have a low incidence of mycorrhizal associations. We therefore hypothesized that autotrophic chlorophyllous spores represent an adaptation of ferns to habitats with scarce mycorrhizal associations. Methods: We evaluated the coevolution of chlorophyllous spores and mycorrhizal associations in ferns and their relation to habitat type using phylogenetic comparative methods. Results: Although we did not find support for the coevolution of spore type and mycorrhizal associations, we did find that chlorophyllous spores and the absence of mycorrhizal associations have coevolved with epiphytic and waterlogged habitats. Transition rates to epiphytic and waterlogged habitats were significantly higher in species with chlorophyllous spores compared to achlorophyllous lineages. Conclusions: Spore type and mycorrhizal associations appear to play important roles in the radiation of ferns into different habitat types. Future work should focus on clarifying the functional significance of these associations. Keywords: arbuscular mycorrhizae; chlorophyllous spores; correlated evolution; dark septate endophytes; epiphytes; grammitid; green spores; pteridophyte

    Cellular Growth in Aerial Roots Differs From That in Typical Substrate Roots

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    Background and Aims: In the roots of most vascular plants, the growth zone is small, the meristem and the elongation zone are sharply separated, and only meristematic cells divide. This statement is based almost entirely on studies with soil-rooted plants. Whether aerial roots of structurally dependent (=epiphytic/hemiepiphytic) species differ is virtually unexplored. Methods: Growth of aerial roots in 20 structurally dependent plant species from eight families was studied ex situ. In 12 species, we studied the anatomical structure and distribution of cortex cell lengths and rhizoderm in the growth zone. Key Results: All the studied aerial roots had an open apical meristem, and mitoses were not restricted to the meristem. In contrast to belowground roots, relative growth rate did not strongly increase upon transition to the elongation zone, while elongating growth was often prolonged. Still, the relative growth rate was lower than in belowground roots in soil, and in different species, it did not change considerably compared to each other. Conclusions: A distinct elongation zone with rapid cell growth was missing in the studied aerial roots. Rather, there was a growth zone in which division, growth, and differentiation co-occurred. We observed a generally low relative growth rate in aerial roots and a surprisingly similar initial growth pattern in spite of the diversity in taxonomy and ecology, which resembled initial cellular growth in leaves, stems, and fleshy dicotyledonous fruit.This work was supported by the Federal budget of Russian Federation, Grant to support for the creation and development of a World-Class Scientific Center Agrotechnologies for the Future, Project No. 075-15-2022-322 date 22.04.2022 and accordance with Institutional Research Project No. 122042700002-6 at the Unique Scientific Installation Fund Greenhouse. Also, the work was supported by MSU Contract #121032500089-1. In this work we used a microscope purchased under the program of modernization of scientific equipment of St. Petersburg State University No. 1.40.541.2017

    Visualization of myocardial infarction and subsequent coronary reperfusion with MRI using a dog model

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    Twelve anesthetized mongrel dogs underwent left thoracotomy with placement of a removable ligature around the left circumflex coronary artery. Following a 3 to 6 hour delay, ECG-gated spin-echo MRI was performed. The ligature was then removed reperfusing the heart, and after a 10-15 min period, MRI repeated. Finally, post-sacrifice images were obtained, and the hearts chemically stained for infarct evaluation. The MR images were subjectively and quantitatively evaluated for visibility of the endocardial border and of the injured myocardium, and for changes after reperfusion. The injured tissue was variably visible in vivo, the major limitation a result of motion blurring and artifact. The abnormal tissue was easily visible on MRI in 11 animals, and not clearly visible in one. The endocardial border was easily seen in 10 animals. The variation of calculated relaxation times was high for both normal and ischemic/infarcted myocardium in the beating hearts (normal: T1 = 566 +/- 288, T2 = 38 +/- 6; injured myocardium: T1 = 637 +/- 250, T2 = 41 +/- 12) in contrast, relatively stationary skeletal muscle measured in the same images had narrower ranges (T1 = 532 +/- 199, T2 = 28 +/- 2). Changes with reperfusion were seen, but not reliably. The infarcted or ischemic zones were easily visible on post-sacrifice images in all animals imaged. Post-sacrifice relaxation times were T1 = 564 +/- 69 msec, T2 = 39 +/- 3 msec for normal heart muscle, and 725 +/- 114, T2 = 47 +/- 5 for ischemic/infarcted tissue. We conclude that acute myocardial infarction can usually be detected by MRI, given a prior knowledge of its location. However, the technique is at present likely to be of only limited value clinically in the prospective diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction, though this may improve as technology advances. Finally, signal changes following reperfusion may be visible in some cases, but not reliably so.Peer Reviewedhttp://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/26951/1/0000517.pd

    Varespladib and cardiovascular events in patients with an acute coronary syndrome: the VISTA-16 randomized clinical trial

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    IMPORTANCE: Secretory phospholipase A2(sPLA2) generates bioactive phospholipid products implicated in atherosclerosis. The sPLA2inhibitor varespladib has favorable effects on lipid and inflammatory markers; however, its effect on cardiovascular outcomes is unknown. OBJECTIVE: To determine the effects of sPLA2inhibition with varespladib on cardiovascular outcomes. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: A double-blind, randomized, multicenter trial at 362 academic and community hospitals in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, India, and North America of 5145 patients randomized within 96 hours of presentation of an acute coronary syndrome (ACS) to either varespladib (n = 2572) or placebo (n = 2573) with enrollment between June 1, 2010, and March 7, 2012 (study termination on March 9, 2012). INTERVENTIONS: Participants were randomized to receive varespladib (500 mg) or placebo daily for 16 weeks, in addition to atorvastatin and other established therapies. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: The primary efficacy measurewas a composite of cardiovascular mortality, nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI), nonfatal stroke, or unstable angina with evidence of ischemia requiring hospitalization at 16 weeks. Six-month survival status was also evaluated. RESULTS: At a prespecified interim analysis, including 212 primary end point events, the independent data and safety monitoring board recommended termination of the trial for futility and possible harm. The primary end point occurred in 136 patients (6.1%) treated with varespladib compared with 109 patients (5.1%) treated with placebo (hazard ratio [HR], 1.25; 95%CI, 0.97-1.61; log-rank P = .08). Varespladib was associated with a greater risk of MI (78 [3.4%] vs 47 [2.2%]; HR, 1.66; 95%CI, 1.16-2.39; log-rank P = .005). The composite secondary end point of cardiovascular mortality, MI, and stroke was observed in 107 patients (4.6%) in the varespladib group and 79 patients (3.8%) in the placebo group (HR, 1.36; 95% CI, 1.02-1.82; P = .04). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: In patients with recent ACS, varespladib did not reduce the risk of recurrent cardiovascular events and significantly increased the risk of MI. The sPLA2inhibition with varespladib may be harmful and is not a useful strategy to reduce adverse cardiovascular outcomes after ACS. TRIAL REGISTRATION: clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT01130246. Copyright 2014 American Medical Association. All rights reserved

    TRY plant trait database - enhanced coverage and open access

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    Plant traits-the morphological, anatomical, physiological, biochemical and phenological characteristics of plants-determine how plants respond to environmental factors, affect other trophic levels, and influence ecosystem properties and their benefits and detriments to people. Plant trait data thus represent the basis for a vast area of research spanning from evolutionary biology, community and functional ecology, to biodiversity conservation, ecosystem and landscape management, restoration, biogeography and earth system modelling. Since its foundation in 2007, the TRY database of plant traits has grown continuously. It now provides unprecedented data coverage under an open access data policy and is the main plant trait database used by the research community worldwide. Increasingly, the TRY database also supports new frontiers of trait-based plant research, including the identification of data gaps and the subsequent mobilization or measurement of new data. To support this development, in this article we evaluate the extent of the trait data compiled in TRY and analyse emerging patterns of data coverage and representativeness. Best species coverage is achieved for categorical traits-almost complete coverage for 'plant growth form'. However, most traits relevant for ecology and vegetation modelling are characterized by continuous intraspecific variation and trait-environmental relationships. These traits have to be measured on individual plants in their respective environment. Despite unprecedented data coverage, we observe a humbling lack of completeness and representativeness of these continuous traits in many aspects. We, therefore, conclude that reducing data gaps and biases in the TRY database remains a key challenge and requires a coordinated approach to data mobilization and trait measurements. This can only be achieved in collaboration with other initiatives

    Seasonal differences in leaf-level physiology give lianas a competitive advantage over trees in a tropical seasonal forest

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    Lianas are an important component of most tropical forests, where they vary in abundance from high in seasonal forests to low in aseasonal forests. We tested the hypothesis that the physiological ability of lianas to fix carbon (and thus grow) during seasonal drought may confer a distinct advantage in seasonal tropical forests, which may explain pan-tropical liana distributions. We compared a range of leaf-level physiological attributes of 18 co-occurring liana and 16 tree species during the wet and dry seasons in a tropical seasonal forest in Xishuangbanna, China. We found that, during the wet season, lianas had significantly higher CO2 assimilation per unit mass (Amass), nitrogen concentration (Nmass), and δ13C values, and lower leaf mass per unit area (LMA) than trees, indicating that lianas have higher assimilation rates per unit leaf mass and higher integrated water-use efficiency (WUE), but lower leaf structural investments. Seasonal variation in CO2 assimilation per unit area (Aarea), phosphorus concentration per unit mass (Pmass), and photosynthetic N-use efficiency (PNUE), however, was significantly lower in lianas than in trees. For instance, mean tree Aarea decreased by 30.1% from wet to dry season, compared with only 12.8% for lianas. In contrast, from the wet to dry season mean liana δ13C increased four times more than tree δ13C, with no reduction in PNUE, whereas trees had a significant reduction in PNUE. Lianas had higher Amass than trees throughout the year, regardless of season. Collectively, our findings indicate that lianas fix more carbon and use water and nitrogen more efficiently than trees, particularly during seasonal drought, which may confer a competitive advantage to lianas during the dry season, and thus may explain their high relative abundance in seasonal tropical forests