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  • Author or Editor: Z. L. Li x
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Uniformity in the height of main stem and tillers is a key factor affecting ideal plant type, a key component in super high-yielding rice breeding. An understanding of the genetic basis of the panicle layer uniformity may thus contribute to breeding varieties with good plant type and high yield. In the present study, a doubled haploid (DH) population, derived from a cross between indica rice variety Zhai-Ye-Qing 8 (ZYQ8) and japonica rice variety Jing-Xi 17 (JX17) was used to analyze quantitative trait loci (QTL) for panicle layer uniformity related traits. Six, four and three QTL were detected for the highest panicle height (HPH), lowest panicle height (LPH) and panicle layer dis-uniformity (PLD), respectively. qHPH-1-1 and qPLD-1 were located at the same interval on chromosome 1. The JX17 allele(s) of these QTL increased HPH and PLD by 2.57 and 1.26 cm, respectively. Similarly, qPLD-7 and qHPH-7 were located at the same interval on chromosome 7, where the ZYQ8 allele(s) increased HPH and PLD by 3.74 and 1.96 cm, respectively. These four QTL were unfavourable for panicle layer uniformity improvement because a decrease of the PLD was accompanied by decrease of the plant height. qPLD-6 and qLPH-6-1 were located at the same interval on chromosome 6, however here the JX17 allele(s) increased LPH, but decreased PLD, suggesting that this QTL was favourable for improvement of panicle layer uniformity. The markers identified in this study are potential for marker assisted breeding for the improvement of the panicle layer uniformity and ideal plant type.

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The objective of this work was to research the antibacterial effects of orange pigment, which was separated from Monascus pigments, against Staphylococcus aureus. The increase of the diameter of inhibition zone treated with orange pigment indicated that orange pigment had remarkable antibacterial activities against S. aureus. Orange pigment (10 mg ml−1) had a strong destructive effect on the membrane and structure of S. aureus by the analysis of scanning electron microscopy as well as transmission electron microscopy. Sodium dodecyl sulphate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) further demonstrated that the cell membrane was seriously damaged by orange pigment, which resulted in the leakage of protein from S. aureus cells. A significant decrease in the synthesis of DNA was also seen in S. aureus cells exposed to 10 mg ml−1 orange pigment. All in all, orange pigment showed excellent antibacterial effects against S. aureus.

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Rice sheath blight, caused by Rhizoctonia solani, is the most serious disease in the southern rice producing regions of China. The use of resistant varieties is the most economic strategy to control the disease. In this paper, a seedling inoculation method was used to evaluate rice germplasm resources for resistance to sheath blight. A total of 363 rice varieties were evaluated with a set of R. solani isolates. The results indicated that the rice varieties generally lacked resistance to R. solani, and no highly resistant/immune (HR) variety was found. However, two varieties displayed clear resistance (R) and 37 showed moderate resistance (MR) to the fungus. Overall, hybrid rice varieties have better resistance than conventional rice varieties, and among hybrid rice varieties, those with the II-32A sterile line genetic background were the most resistant. The results also indicated significant interactions between rice varieties and pathogen isolates, suggesting that an understanding of local R. solani populations is needed when recommending varieties to local growers.

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The catalytic and accelerating effects of three coal-burning additives (CBA) on the burning of graphite were studied with the help of thermogravimetric (TG) analysis. The kinetic study on the catalytic oxidation of the graphite doped with CBA was carried out and the results were presented. The results show that the CBA can change the carbon oxidation/combustion course by catalytic action and change the activation energy, thus improving the combustion efficiency.

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The effects of cisplatin and its trans isomer transplatin on the thermal denaturation of G-actin were studied with a Micro DSC-III differential scanning calorimeter. The denaturation enthalpy of G-actin was found to be 12 J g–1, and the denaturation temperature was 328 K. The thermal denaturation curve showed that increasing cisplatin concentration decreased the enthalpy change. However, after the ratio of cisplatin to G-actin attained 8:1 (mol:mol), the denaturation enthalpy no longer decreased. Transplatin decreased the enthalpy change more rapidly. In contrast with cisplatin, the denaturation peak at 328 K disappeared, and a strong exothermic peak appeared at 341 K when the ratio of transplatin to G-actin was 8:1 (mol:mol). The enthalpy change was 75 J g–1, which is far in excess of the range of weak interactions. This strong exothermic phenomenon probably reflects the agglutination of protein. The effects of cisplatin and transplatin on the number of the free thiol groups of G-actin are discussed.

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The thermal decomposition of strontium acetate hemihydrate has been studied by TG-DTA/DSC and TG coupled with Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) under non-isothermal conditions in nitrogen gas from ambient temperature to 600°C. The TG-DTA/DSC experiments indicate the decomposition goes mainly through two steps: the dehydration and the subsequent decomposition of anhydrous strontium acetate into strontium carbonate. TG-FTIR analysis of the evolved products from the non-oxidative thermal degradation indicates mainly the release of water, acetone and carbon dioxide. The model-free isoconversional methods are employed to calculate the E a of both steps at different conversion α from 0.1 to 0.9 with increment of 0.05. The relative constant apparent E a values during dehydration (0.5<α<0.9) of strontium acetate hemihydrate and decomposition of anhydrous strontium acetate (0.5<α<0.9) suggest that the simplex reactions involved in the corresponding thermal events. The most probable kinetic models during dehydration and decomposition have been estimated by means of the master plots method.

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The heat capacities of trans-(R)-3-(2,2-dichloroethenyl)-2,2-dimethylcyclopropanecarboxylic acid in the temperature range from 78 to 389 K were measured with a precise automatic adiabatic calorimeter. The sample was prepared with the purity of 0.9874 mole fraction. A solid-liquid fusion phase transition was observed in the experimental temperature range. The melting point, T m, enthalpy and entropy of fusion, Δfus H m, Δfus S m, were determined to be 344.75±0.02 K, 13.75±0.07 kJ mol−1, 39.88±0.21 J K−1 mol−1, respectively. The thermodynamic functions of the sample, H (T)-H (298.15), S (T)-S (298.15) and G (T)-G (298.15), were reported with a temperature interval of 5 K. The thermal decomposition of the sample was studied by TG analysis, the thermal decomposition starts at ca. 421 K and terminates at ca. 535 K, the maximum decomposition rate was obtained at 525 K. The order of reaction, pre-exponential factor and activation energy, are n=0.14, A=1.15·108 min−1, E=66.27 kJ mol−1, respectively.

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Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) has been widely used in many countries for thousands of years and played an indispensable role in the prevention and treatment of diseases, especially the complicated and chronic ones. However, the application of TCM in diseases is still not fully recognized by people around the world, the main reason is that Chinese herb is a very complex mixture containing hundreds of different components. Thus, it is essential to make quality control and evaluation of TCM. A new quality evaluation method, quantitative analysis of multi-components by single marker (QAMS), was developed to the quality control of alkaloids in TCM, a case study on Radix aconiti lateralis, named Fuzi in Chinese. Six alkaloids, including aconitine, hypaconitine, mesaconitine, benzoylaconine, benzoylmesaconine, and benzoylhypaconine, were selected as main components to evaluate the quality of Radix aconiti lateralis. The feasibility and accuracy of QAMS were checked by the external standard method, and various high-performance liquid chromatographic instruments and chromatographic conditions were investigated to verify its applicability. Using aconitine as the internal reference substance and the content of aconitine was calculated according to relative correction factors by high-performance liquid chromatography. The present results showed that there was no significant difference observed between the QAMS method and the external standard method with the relative average deviations less than 3.0%, and QAMS is an effective way to control the quality of herbal medicines and seems to be a convenient and accurate approach to analyze multi-composition when reference substances are unavailable.

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The crystal C81H78N12O6Cd3 was synthesized and its structure was determined by single crystal X-ray diffraction method. The complex crystallizes in the monoclinic system space group P21/n with cell parameters, a=15.959(4) , b=26.222(3) , c=25.907(6) , β=101.60(2). The non-isothermal kinetics of the crystal was studied by use of non-isothermal TG and DTG curves. The kinetic parameters were analyzed by means of integral and differential methods, and mechanism functions of the thermal decomposition reaction for its second step were proposed. The kinetic equation of thermal decomposition is expressed as: dα/dt=Aexp(-E/RT)1.5(1-α)4/3[1/(1-α)1/3-1]−1. The average values of E(kJ mol−1) and lnA/s−1 are 339.25, 43.95, respectively.

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The molar heat capacities C p,m of 2,2-dimethyl-1,3-propanediol were measured in the temperature range from 78 to 410 K by means of a small sample automated adiabatic calorimeter. A solid-solid and a solid-liquid phase transitions were found at T-314.304 and 402.402 K, respectively, from the experimental C p-T curve. The molar enthalpies and entropies of these transitions were determined to be 14.78 kJ mol−1, 47.01 J K−1 mol for the solid-solid transition and 7.518 kJ mol−1, 18.68 J K−1 mol−1 for the solid-liquid transition, respectively. The dependence of heat capacity on the temperature was fitted to the following polynomial equations with least square method. In the temperature range of 80 to 310 K, C p,m/(J K−1 mol−1)=117.72+58.8022x+3.0964x 2+6.87363x 3−13.922x 4+9.8889x 5+16.195x 6; x=[(T/K)−195]/115. In the temperature range of 325 to 395 K, C p,m/(J K−1 mol−1)=290.74+22.767x−0.6247x 2−0.8716x 3−4.0159x 4−0.2878x 5+1.7244x 6; x=[(T/K)−360]/35. The thermodynamic functions H TH 298.15 and S TS 298.15, were derived from the heat capacity data in the temperature range of 80 to 410 K with an interval of 5 K. The thermostability of the compound was further tested by DSC and TG measurements. The results were in agreement with those obtained by adiabatic calorimetry.

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