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  • Author or Editor: Q.B. Liu x
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Abstract  

A fully automated adiabatic calorimeter controlled on line by a computer used for heat capacity measurements in the temperature range from 80 to 400 K was constructed. The hardware of the calorimetric system consisted of a Data Acquisition/Switch Unit, 34970A Agilent, a 7 1/2 Digit Nano Volt /Micro Ohm Meter, 34420A Agilent, and a P4 computer. The software was developed according to modern controlling theory. The adiabatic calorimeter consisted mainly of a sample cell equipped with a miniature platinum resistance thermometer and an electric heater, two (inner and outer) adiabatic shields, two sets of six junction differential thermocouple piles and a high vacuum can. A Lake Shore 340 Temperature Controller and the two sets of differential thermocouples were used to control the adiabatic conditions between the cell and its surroundings. The reliability of the calorimeter was verified by measuring the heat capacities of synthetic sapphire (α-Al2O3), Standard Reference Material 720. The deviation of the data obtained by this calorimeter from those published by NIST was within ±0.1% in the temperature range from 80 to 400 K.

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In this study, the cDNA of homocysteine S-methyltransferase was isolated from Aegilops tauschii Coss., with the gene accordingly designated as AetHMT1. Similar to other methyltransferases, AetHMT1 contains a GGCCR consensus sequence for a possible zinc-binding motif near the C-terminal and a conserved cysteine residue upstream of the zinc-binding motif. Analysis of AetHMT1 uncovered no obvious chloroplast or mitochondrial targeting sequences. We functionally expressed AetHMT1 in Escherichia coli and confirmed its biological activity, as evidenced by a positive HMT enzyme activity of 164.516 ± 17.378 nmol min−1 mg−1 protein when catalyzing the transformation of L-homocysteine. Compared with the bacterium containing the empty vector, E. coli harboring the recombinant AetHMT1 plasmid showed much higher tolerance to selenate and selenite. AetHMT1 transcript amounts in different organs were increased by Na2SeO4 treatment, with roots accumulating higher amounts than stems, old leaves and new leaves. We have therefore successfully isolated HMT1 from Ae. tauschii and characterized the biochemical and physiological functions of the corresponding protein.

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Abstract

With the enhancement of people’s awareness of drinking health, the health factors in Wuliangye-flavour liquor is worth our attention. Bacterial communities in 4 layers of Zaopei from the same fermentation pit and amino acids as major health factors in 4 liquors directly related Zaopeis were investigated by Illumina MiSeq sequencing and liquid chromatography mass spectrometry, respectively. Results indicated that 18 amino acids were detected and 8 dominant bacteria (genus level) were observed. Meanwhile, total amino acids, 11 amino acids (Glu, Asp, Val, etc), bacterial diversity, and the percentages of Lactobacillus and Pseudomonas increased with the increase of Zaopei’s depth; 5 amino acids (Pro, Ser, Phe, etc) and the percentages of Pediococcus and Bacteroides first increased and then decreased with the increase of Zaopei’s depth. Moreover, 11 amino acids were significantly (P < 0.01) and strongly (|ρ| > 0.8) positively correlated with Lactobacillus and Pseudomonas numbers.

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Saccharomyces cerevisiae MERIT.ferm was used as mono- and mixed-cultures with Williopsis saturnus var. mrakii NCYC500 in mango wine fermentation. A ratio of 1:1000 (Saccharomyces:Williopsis) was chosen for mixed-culture fermentation to enable longer persistence of the latter. The monoculture of S. cerevisiae and mixed-culture was able to ferment to dryness with 7.0% and 7.7% ethanol, respectively. The monoculture of W. mrakii produced 1.45% ethanol. The mango wines fermented by S. cerevisiae alone and the mixed-culture were more yeasty and winey, which reflected their higher amounts of fusel alcohols, ethyl esters and medium-chain fatty acids. The mango wine fermented by W. mrakii alone was much less alcoholic, but fruitier, sweeter, which corresponded to its higher levels of acetate esters.

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Abstract  

The enthalpies of solution in water of RE(His)(NO3)3 H2O (RE=La—Nd, Sm—Lu, Y) were measured calorimetrically at 298.15 K, and the standard enthalpies of formation of RE(His)aq 3+ (RE=La—Nd, Sm—Lu, Y) were calculated. The plot of the enthalpies of solution vs. the atomic numbers of the elements in the lanthanide series exhibits the tetrad effect.

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To evaluate the quality of Fructus Arctii, an accurate and reliable method of high-performance liquid chromatography/diode array detection—electrospray ionization—mass spectrometry (HPLC/DAD—ESI—MS) was developed. Nine compounds, including chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, trans-p-hydroxycinnamic acid, arctiin, arctignan A, ethyl caffeate, matairesinol, arctigenin, and lappaol B, were determined simultaneously in 19 batches of Fructus Arctii samples collected from different localities. Nineteen common peaks were identified or tentatively assigned by comparing their mass spectrometric data with reference compounds, self-established compound library, and published literatures. Also, the 19 common peaks were selected as characteristic peaks to assess the similarity of chromatographic fingerprinting of these samples. Moreover, hierarchical clustering analysis (HCA) and principal components analysis (PCA) were successfully applied to demonstrate the variability of samples. The results indicated the content of nine compounds that varied greatly among the samples, and 19 samples collected from different localities could be discriminated. Furthermore, chlorogenic acid, arctiin, and arctigenin were found to be chemical markers for evaluating the quality of Fructus Arctii.

Open access

Red coleoptile is an easily observed agronomic trait of wheat and has been extensively studied. However, the molecular mechanism of this trait has not yet been revealed. In this study, the MYB gene TaMYB-D1 was isolated from the wheat cultivar ‘Gy115’, which possesses red coleoptiles. This gene resided at the short arm of the homoelogous group 7 chromosomes. TaMYB-D1 was the only gene expressed in the coleoptiles of ‘Gy115’ and was not expressed in ‘Opata’ and ‘CS’, which have uncoloured coleoptiles. Phylogenetic analysis placed TaMYB-D1 very close to ZmC1 and other MYB proteins regulating anthocyanin biosynthesis. The encoded protein of TaMYB-D1 had an integrated DNA binding domain of 102 amino acids and a transcription domain with 42 amino acids, similar to the structure of ZmC1. Transient expression analysis in onion epidermal cells showed that TaMYB-D1 was located at the plant nucleus, which suggested its role as a transcription factor. The expression of TaMYB-D1 was accompanied with the expression of TaDFR and anthocyanin biosynthesis in the development of the coleoptile of ‘Gy115’. Transient expression analysis showed that only TaMYB-D1 induced a few ‘Opata’ coleoptile cells to synthesize anthocyanin in light, and the gene also induced a colour change to red in many cells with the help of ZmR. All of these results suggested TaMYB-D1 as the candidate gene for the red coleoptile trait of ‘Gy115’.

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The aphid Sitobion avenae F. is one of the most harmful pests of wheat growth in the world. A primary field screening test was carried out to evaluate the S. avenae resistance of 527 wheat landraces from Shaanxi. The results indicated that 25 accessions (4.74%) were resistant to S. avenae in the three consecutive seasons, of which accession S849 was highly resistant, and seven accessions were moderately resistant. The majority of S. avenae resistant accessions come from Qinling Mountains. Then, the genetic variability of a set of 33 accessions (25 S. avenae resistant and 8 S. avenae susceptible) originating from Qinling Mountains have been assessed by 20 morphological traits and 99 simple sequence repeat markers (SSRs). Morphological traits and SSRs displayed a high level of genetic diversity within 33 accessions. The clustering of the accessions based on morphological traits and SSR markers showed significant discrepancy according to the geographical distribution, resistance to S. avenae and species of accessions. The highly and moderately resistant landrace accessions were collected from the middle and the east part of Qinling Mountains with similar morphology characters, for example slender leaves with wax, lower leaf area, and high ear density. These S. avenae resistant landraces can be used in wheat aphid resistance breeding as valuable resources.

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Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional disorder, affecting over 30% of the world’s human population. The primary method used to alleviate this problem is nutrient biofortification of crops so as to improve the iron content and its availability in food sources. The over-expression of ferritin is an effective method to increase iron concentration in transgenic crops. For the research reported herein, sickle alfalfa (Medicago falcata L.) ferritin was transformed into wheat driven by the seed-storage protein glutelin GluB-1 gene promoter. The integration of ferritin into the wheat was assessed by PCR, RT-PCR and Western blotting. The concentration of certain minerals in the transgenic wheat grain was determined by inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectrometry, the results showed that grain Fe and Zn concentration of transgenic wheat increased by 73% and 44% compared to nontransformed wheat, respectively. However, grain Cu and Cd concentration of transgenic wheat grain decreased significantly in comparison with non-transformed wheat. The results suggest that the over-expression of sickle alfalfa ferritin, controlled by the seed-storage protein glutelin GluB-1 gene promoter, increases the grain Fe and Zn concentration, but also affects the homeostasis of other minerals in transgenic wheat grain.

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Abstract  

The molar heat capacity, C p,m, of a complex of holmium chloride coordinated with L-aspartic acid, Ho(Asp)Cl2·6H2O, was measured from 80 to 397 K with an automated adiabatic calorimeter. The thermodynamic functions H T-H 298.15 and S T-S 298.15 were derived from 80 to 395 K with temperature interval of 5 K. The thermal stability of the complex was investigated by differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) and thermogravimetric (TG) technique, and the mechanism of thermal decomposing of the complex was determined based on the structure and the thermal analysis experiment.

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