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Abstract  

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Abstract  

A new approach for the study of ion transport by an in situ radiotracer method is presented. The method is based upon the measurement of the intensity and energy spectrum change of -radiation during the penetration of labeled species. The applicability of the radiotracer technique is detailed through the measurement of the transport of labeled chloride ions into a PERMAPLEX-A20 anion exchanger membrane. The proposed method is applicable to in situ monitoring of the motion of ions in the membrane (or adsorbent).

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Abstract  

Coals mined in some regions of the Transdanubian Middle Mountains in Hungary have elevated concentrations of natural radionuclides as238U,226Ra, etc. Therefore, coal slags and ashes used for insulation of the school buildings may lead to high dose contributions on the students. In the city of Tatabánya one school was found where the external dose rates in the classrooms were of 500–900 nGy/h. In spite of the high external dose rates, the radon concentrations measured were small usually less than 100 Bq/m3.

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Abstract  

A significant dose contribution on the population could be derived from coal slags used as isolation material. Extremely high natural activities are measured in the coal slag, derived from the region of the settlement Ajka, Hungary. In some buildings monitored, the elevated -doses were nearly 5–10 times higher than the world average ones. The annual average indoor radon concentrations from the slag exceeded 400 Bq/m3 and in some cases up to 1200 Bq/m3. Due to the elevated exposure and the radon concentrations in the dwellings the annual dose was estimated to 8–24 mSv/y more than 5–10 times of the world average one.

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Summary  

During the period of 1993-2001 chemical decontaminations of 24 SGs in the units 1-3 of the Paks NPP were carried out by a non-regenerative version of AP-CITROX technology, even in two or three consecutive cycles. A comprehensive investigation of the above decontamination method have revealed that the fundamental issues of analytical chemistry and corrosion science were not taken into consideration during the elaboration of AP-CITROX procedure. Therefore, the non-regenerative version of the technology utilized at Paks NPP can be considered to be not an adequate method for the chemical decontamination of any reactor equipments having large steel surfaces (e.g., SGs). As a consequence of the lack of the appropriate decontamination method, initiation of a R&D project focused on the elaboration of the required technology should not be postponed. In this paper, we present a brief overview on the fundamental issues of the technology development. Selected findings obtained in our laboratory on the field of the improvement of the AP-CITROX technology are also reviewed in order to demonstrate the crucial role of some selection criteria.

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Agricultural goods obtained and produced in Hungary have played an important role in the markets of Western Europe. By utilizing the ecological potentials of the Carpathian Basin, local inhabitants are in the position to produce considerable food surpluses in addition to meeting their own demands. With agricultural production becoming more and more intensive in Hungary, the application of mineral fertilizers also started to increase slowly from the 1960’s. From the mid-1970’s a uniform sampling, soil testing and fertilization extension system was created together with its own institutional and laboratory testing network. The intensive use of mineral fertilizers in Hungary lasted from the mid-1970’s to the last quarter of the 1980’s, during which an average amount of 230 kg·ha -1 NPK fertilizer was applied. In this period the so-called “build-up” fertilization was applied in conformity with the improvement of all other elements involved in the production technology, which was also clearly expressed in the agro-political objectives of those days aiming to obtain higher yields. At that time the nutrient supply and nutrient base of soils in Hungary increased clearly, so the production technology could no longer limit higher yields. In 1990 agriculture changed fundamentally and radically in Hungary, and the same was valid for nutrient supplies as well. At the beginning of the 1990’s there was a sudden decrease in the level of mineral fertilizer application (to below 40 kg NPK active ingredients·ha -1 ), followed by a slow increase, which has reached the level of almost 70 kg·ha -1 by today. In the meantime the animal stock in Hungary has decreased and consequently the amount of manure has also fallen. All in all, the nutrient balance of Hungarian soils has always been negative since 1989. Due to the changes in its structure and ownership over the past twenty years or so, it has become very difficult to obtain reliable information about Hungarian agriculture. The Soil Resources Management General Partnership (in Hungarian: Talajerőgazdálkodás Kkt.) conducts extension work based on soil sampling and has a continuous flow of data on over thirty thousand hectares, beginning at the end of the 1970’s. Based on the analyses of these data it can be stated that the extra amount of nutrients over balance, applied during the period of replenishment (until the change in regimes) has been „removed” from the soil over the past fifteen years, consequently the Hungarian nutrient balance has become negative again. This kind of fertilization practice cannot be sustained in Hungary, as the maintenance of the production potential of Hungarian soils is far from being resolved at the moment; it poses risks to and questions sustainability, as well as it may cause a very serious competitive disadvantage to the country.

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Whole cereal flours (buckwheat, barley, and oat) and wheat bran were used to substitute 20% of white bakery wheat flour to prepare round rolls. Round roll quality was evaluated by determining total phenolic and total flavonoid contents, antioxidative capacity, the content of lipid hydroperoxides (primary oxidation products), and sensory profiling. Moreover, the stability of the phenolic compounds and antioxidant behaviour throughout processing was studied. Technological processing does not cause any significant loss of phenolics (less than 5%). A significant increase in antioxidants and phenolics of the flour mixtures and final products were observed compared to those of white wheat round rolls (as control). Buckwheat and barley round roll crumbs contained the highest total phenolic and total flavonoid contents, and were the most effective in enhancing antioxidant activity, which increased 15-fold and 8-fold, respectively, when compared to the control roll. The tested cereals effectively retarded formation of lipid hydroperoxides (from over 50% to control), which are undesirable from both a nutrition and storage/shelf life perspective. The results of sensory analyses showed that such bakery products are accepted by consumers with the exception of the product made with oat flour, where a reduction in the oat content would be preferable.

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In December 2012 then in the following winter season, the occurrence of whitish mycelial coat was observed on the collar of 3- to 6-m high Bucida buceras trees grown in hydrocultures to decorate a spacious indoor community space in Vienna. (This plant [shown in Fig. 1] belongs to Combretaceae, Myrtales and commonly named black olive tree, bullet tree, gregorywood and oxhorn bucida.) The mycelium-infested area of the bark appeared to be water-soaked. Near the surface of the potting mix (earth ball embedded in clay pebbles), the roots were also covered with whitish mycelia (Fig. 2). Over the winter season when the indoor temperature increased from 20 °C to 25 °C, these symptoms were unnoticeable. Regardless of the season, the rhizosphere contained numbers of sclerotia, dark-grey, globose and 8–12 mm in diameter that occasionally developed rhizomorph-like mycelial cords.

Direct plating of mycelium fragments from the bark and sclerotia from the rhizosphere onto potato dextrose agar amended with ampicillin (500 mg/l) eventually yielded pure fungal cultures of similar characteristics. Cultures routinely incubated in the dark developed white and submerged colonies with sparse aerial mycelia. The fungus grew well between 10 °C and 25 °C, and failed to grow at either 5 °C or 32 °C. The optimal growth was measured at 20 °C with an average radial growth rate of 11 mm per day. After 10 to 12 days, a ring of sclerotia begun to develop near the edge of the colonies; they turned dark grey and sized 3–8 mm. Rather misleadingly, neither conidia, nor sexual spores were observed in these cultures. However, when the fungus was cultured in natural light under laboratory conditions at 25 °C, a completely different colony pattern was observed; it was cottony, greyish then dark grey, and produced abundant hyaline conidia borne on grey, branching tree-like conidiophores. Conidia were one-celled and egg-shaped, and their dimensions fell in the range of 9.89–14.63 (11.48±0.31) µm×7.05–10.05 (8.31±0.20) µm. These features concurred with those characterising the polyphagous grey mould fungus Botryotinia fuckeliana (anamorph: Botrytis cinerea) (Elad et al., 2007). The ITS1/ITS2 including the 5.8S subunit of rDNA of one of the isolates were amplified with primers ITS1-F/ITS4, then the PCR products were sequenced. The ITS sequence determined in this way was identical to known sequences of B. fuckeliana strains, e.g. that of CBS 131.28 (GenBank accession number: KF859918), the type material of Botrytis cinerea f. lini, DAOM 231372 (GenBank accession number: KF859924) and so on.

Pathogenicity tests resulted in rapidly (within 2 weeks) developing disease symptoms around the site of wound inoculation with a 5-mm-diametre mycelial agar plug: fruit rot on apple and lemon in the laboratory, and sunken lesions on stems of hydrocultured ornamental plants such as the herbaceous Monstera deliciosa and the woody Dracena marginata. To fulfill Koch’s postulates, the fungus was re-isolated from symptomatic apple fruit, and was found to exhibit the afore-mentioned morpho-physiological characteristics.

Inoculation test on Bucida was not performed because of the costly risk i.e., the sale price of the trees is € 3 to 10 thousand. Consequently, the actual sensitivity of Bucida to grey mould remains uncertain, so much the more because this plant species has not been recorded as a host of the pathogen or other important parasitic fungi in natural (subtropical) environment (e.g. Whelburg et al., 1975). To our knowledge, this report is the first description of Botryotinia fuckeliana on Bucida buceras. In addition to the fact that periodic emergence of fungal mycelia on the trunk impairs the tree’s aesthetic appearance, the sclerotia resting in the potting mix may cause more serious problems in the long term. However, it cannot be precluded that the elevated indoor temperature reduces disease progression and thus the economic importance of the pathogen on this plant.

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Acta Alimentaria
Authors: E. Kovács, P. Merész, Z. Kristóf, and E. Németh-Szerdahelyi

Colour, texture, pectin autolysis, membrane permeability and microstructure (SEM, TEM), β-galactosidase and polygalacturonase were studied in apricots (cv. Magyar kajszi) harvested in mature green, straw yellow, bright orange and deep orange stages. The L* increased from mature green to straw yellow then decreased from straw yellow to deep orange state. The a* values increased with ripening. The bright and deep orange apricots were significantly softer than the mature green and straw yellow ones and the membrane permeability increased with ripening. The presence of β-galactosidase enzyme was proved by immunoblotting analysis using monoclonal anti-β-galactosidase clone GAL-13 (Sigma) in all ripening stages. The enzyme activity was very low in mature green stage and increased significantly (P>95%) with increasing ripeness and during storage. The PG activity was very low in the mature green apricot. A significant (P>95%) increase was observed in the straw yellow apricot and in the riper fruits. The mature green apricot showed a regular, the straw yellow and bright orange samples showed a moderately regular tissue structure, while the tissue of the deep orange apricot collapsed (SEM). The cell wall and the middle lamella of the green apricot (TEM) were intact. Generally, there were intact cytoplasm membranes with some damaged parts. In the straw yellow apricot, the cell wall started to loosen, the middle lamella lost pectic polysaccharides. The structure of the cytoplasm was not recognisable, the tonoplast and the cytoplasm membrane were injured. The cell wall of the bright orange apricot was similar to that of the straw yellow ones. The middle lamella dissolved and hairy, fibrillar structure of cell wall was found in the deep orange samples.

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