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Gharsallah, C.; Fakhfakh, H.; Grubb, D.; Gorsane, F. Effect of salt stress on ion concentration, proline content, antioxidant enzyme activities and gene expression in tomato cultivars AoB PLANTS 8, plw055, (2016) DOI: 10.1093/aobpla/plw055

Salinity is a constraint limiting plant growth and productivity of crops throughout the world. Understanding the mechanism underlying plant response to salinity provides new insights into the improvement of salt tolerance-crops of importance. In the present study, we report on the responses of twenty cultivars of tomato. We have clustered genotypes into scale classes according to their response to increased NaCl levels. Three local tomato genotypes, representative of different saline scale classes, were selected for further investigation. During early (0 h, 6 h and 12 h) and later (7 days) stages of the response to salt treatment, ion concentrations (Na + , K +  and Ca 2+ ), proline content, enzyme activities (catalase, ascorbate peroxidase and guiacol peroxidase) were recorded. qPCR analysis of candidate genes WRKY (8, 31and 39), ERF (9, 16 and 80), LeNHX (1, 3 and 4) and HKT (class I) were performed. A high K + , Ca 2 + and proline accumulation as well as a decrease of Na +  concentration-mediated salt tolerance. Concomitant with a pattern of high-antioxidant enzyme activities, tolerant genotypes also displayed differential patterns of gene expression during the response to salt stress.

Zayneb, C.; Lamia, K.; Olfa, E.; Naïma, J.; Grubb, C. D.; Bassem, K.; Hafedh, M.; Amine, E. Morphological, Physiological and Biochemical Impact of Ink Industry Effluent on Germination of Maize (Zea mays), Barley (Hordeum vulgare) and Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) Bull Environ Contam Toxicol 95, 687-693, (2015) DOI: 10.1007/s00128-015-1600-y

The present study focuses on effects of untreated and treated ink industry wastewater on germination of maize, barley and sorghum. Wastewater had a high chemical oxygen demand (COD) and metal content compared to treated effluent. Germination decreased with increasing COD concentration. Speed of germination also followed the same trend, except for maize seeds exposed to untreated effluent (E), which germinated slightly faster than controls. These alterations of seedling development were mirrored by changes in soluble protein content. E exerted a positive effect on soluble protein content and maximum levels occurred after 10 days with treated effluent using coagulation/flocculation (TEc/f) process and treated effluent using combined process (coagulation/flocculation/biosorption) (TEc/f/b). Likewise, activity of α-amylase was influenced by effluent composition. Its expression depended on the species, exposure time and applied treatment. Nevertheless, current results indicated TEc/f/b had no observable toxic effects on germination and could be a beneficial alternative resource to irrigation water.

Flores, R.; Gago-Zachert, S.; Serra, P.; Sanjuán, R.; Elena, S. F. Viroids: Survivors from the RNA World? Annual Rev Microbiol 68, 395 - 414, (2014) DOI: 10.1146/annurev-micro-091313-103416

Because RNA can be a carrier of genetic information and a biocatalyst, there is a consensus that it emerged before DNA and proteins, which eventually assumed these roles and relegated RNA to intermediate functions. If such a scenario—the so-called RNA world—existed, we might hope to find its relics in our present world. The properties of viroids that make them candidates for being survivors of the RNA world include those expected for primitive RNA replicons: (a) small size imposed by error-prone replication, (b) high G+ C content to increase replication fidelity, (c) circular structure for assuring complete replication without genomic tags, (d) structural periodicity for modular assembly into enlarged genomes, (e) lack of protein-coding ability consistent with a ribosome-free habitat, and (f) replication mediated in some by ribozymes, the fingerprint of the RNA world. With the advent of DNA and proteins, those protoviroids lost some abilities and became the plant parasites we now know.

Schilling, S.; Stenzel, I.; von Bohlen, A.; Wermann, M.; Schulz, K.; Demuth, H.-U.; Wasternack, C. Isolation and characterization of the glutaminyl cyclases from <i>Solanum tuberosum</i> and <i>Arabidopsis thaliana</i>: implications for physiological functions Biol. Chem 388, 145-153, (2007)

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