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Nishiyama, T.; Sakayama, H.; de Vries, J.; Buschmann, H.; Saint-Marcoux, D.; Ullrich, K. K.; Haas, F. B.; Vanderstraeten, L.; Becker, D.; Lang, D.; Vosolsobě, S.; Rombauts, S.; Wilhelmsson, P. K. I.; Janitza, P.; Kern, R.; Heyl, A.; Rümpler, F; Calderón Villalobos, L. I. A.; Clay, J. M.; Skokan, R.; Toyoda, A.; Suzuki, Y.; Kagoshima, H.; Schijlen, E.; Tajeshwar, N.; Catarino, B.; Hetherington, A. J.; Saltykova, A.; Bonnot, C.; Breuninger, H.; Symeonidi, A.; Radhakrishnan, G. V.; Van Nieuwerburgh, F.; Deforce, D.; Chang, C.; Karol, K. G.; Hedrich, R.; Ulvskov, P.; Glöckner, G.; Delwiche, C. F.; Petrášek, J.; Van de Peer, Y.; Friml, J.; Beilby, M.; Dolan, L.; Kohara, Y.; Sugano, S.; Fujiyama, A.; Delaux, P.-M.; Quint, M.; Theißen, G.; Hagemann, M.; Harholt, J.; Dunand, C.; Zachgo, S.; Langdale, J.; Maumus, F.; Van Der Straeten, D.; Gould, S. B.; Rensing, S. A. The Chara Genome: Secondary Complexity and Implications for Plant Terrestrialization Cell 174, 448-464.e24, (2018) DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2018.06.033

Land plants evolved from charophytic algae, among which Charophyceae possess the most complex body plans. We present the genome of Chara braunii; comparison of the genome to those of land plants identified evolutionary novelties for plant terrestrialization and land plant heritage genes. C. braunii employs unique xylan synthases for cell wall biosynthesis, a phragmoplast (cell separation) mechanism similar to that of land plants, and many phytohormones. C. braunii plastids are controlled via land-plant-like retrograde signaling, and transcriptional regulation is more elaborate than in other algae. The morphological complexity of this organism may result from expanded gene families, with three cases of particular note: genes effecting tolerance to reactive oxygen species (ROS), LysM receptor-like kinases, and transcription factors (TFs). Transcriptomic analysis of sexual reproductive structures reveals intricate control by TFs, activity of the ROS gene network, and the ancestral use of plant-like storage and stress protection proteins in the zygote.

Kowalski, A. M.; Gooding, M.; Ferrante, A.; Slafer, G. A.; Orford, S.; Gasperini, D.; Griffiths, S. Agronomic assessment of the wheat semi-dwarfing gene Rht8 in contrasting nitrogen treatments and water regimes Field Crop Res 191, 150-160, (2016) DOI: 10.1016/j.fcr.2016.02.026

Reduced height 8 (Rht8) is the main alternative to the GA-insensitive Rht alleles in hot and dry environments where it reduces plant height without yield penalty. The potential of Rht8 in northern-European wheat breeding remains unclear, since the close linkage with the photoperiod-insensitive allele Ppd-D1a is unfavourable in the relatively cool summers. In the present study, two near-isogenic lines (NILs) contrasting for the Rht8/tall allele from Mara in a UK-adapted and photoperiod-sensitive wheat variety were evaluated in trials with varying nitrogen fertiliser (N) treatments and water regimes across sites in the UK and Spain.The Rht8 introgression was associated with a robust height reduction of 11% regardless of N treatment and water regime and the Rht8 NIL was more resistant to root-lodging at agronomically-relevant N levels than the tall NIL. In the UK with reduced solar radiation over the growing season than the site in Spain, the Rht8 NIL showed a 10% yield penalty at standard agronomic N levels due to concomitant reduction in grain number and spike number whereas grain weight and harvest index were not significantly different to the tall NIL. The yield penalty associated with the Rht8 introgression was overcome at low N and in irrigated conditions in the UK, and in the high-temperature site in Spain. Decreased spike length and constant spikelet number in the Rht8 NIL resulted in spike compaction of 15%, independent of N and water regime. The genetic interval of Rht8 overlaps with the compactum gene on 2DS, raising the possibility of the same causative gene. Further genetic dissection of these loci is required.Abbreviations    ANOVA, analysis of variance; Y, yield; HI, harvest index; GN, grain number (m−2); SS, spikelet number (spike−1); SN, spike number (m−2); HD, heading date; AN, anthesis; 12L, length of the second internode from the top; 13L, length of the third internode from the top; PAR, photosynthetically active radiation; R: FR, red: far-red light reflectance ratio; RCBD, randomised complete block design

Feussner, I.; Fritz, I.G.; Hause, B.; Ullrich, W.R.; Wasternack, C. Induction of a new lipoxygenase form in cucumber leaves by salicylic acid or 2,6-dichloroisonicotinic acid Bot. Acta 110, 101-108, (1997) DOI: 10.1111/j.1438-8677.1997.tb00616.x

Changes in lipoxygenase (LOX) protein pattern and/or activity were investigated in relation to acquired resistance of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) leaves against two powdery mildews, Sphaerotheca fuliginea (Schlecht) Salmon and Erysiphe cichoracearum DC et Merat. Acquired resistance was established by spraying leaves with salicylic acid (SA) or 2,6-dichloroisonicotinic acid (INA) and estimated in whole plants by infested leaf area compared to control plants. SA was more effective than INA. According to Western blots, untreated cucumber leaves contained a 97 kDa LOX form, which remained unchanged for up to 48 h after pathogen inoculation. Upon treatment with SA alone for 24 h or with INA plus pathogen, an additional 95 kDa LOX form appeared which had an isoelectric point in the alkaline range. For the induction of this form, a threshold concentration of 1 mM SA was required, higher SA concentrations did not change LOX-95 expression which remained similar between 24 h and 96 h but further increased upon mildew inoculation. Phloem exudates contained only the LOX-97 form, in intercellular washing fluid no LOX was detected. dichloroisonicotinic localization revealed LOX protein in the cytosol of the mesophyll cells without differences between the forms.
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