Academic – A Wind Tunnel for Odor Mediated Insect Behavioural Assays
Geir Kjølberg Knudsen, Marco Tasin, Anders Aak, ...
Olfaction is the most important sensory mechanism by which many insects interact with their environment and a wind tunnel is an excellent tool to study insect chemical ecology. Insects can locate point sources in a three-dimensional environment through the sensory interaction and sophisticated behavior. The quantification of this behavior is a key element in the development of new tools for pest control and decision support. A wind tunnel with a suitable flight section with laminar air flow, visual cues for in-flight feedback and a variety of options for the application of odors can be used to measure complex behaviour which subsequently may allow the identification of attractive or repellent odors, insect flight characteristics, visual-odor interactions and interactions between attractants and odors lingering as background odors in the environment. A wind tunnel holds the advantage of studying the odor mediated behavioural repertoire of an insect in a laboratory setting. Behavioural measures in a controlled setting provide the link between the insect physiology and field application. A wind tunnel must be a flexible tool and should easily support the changes to setup and hardware to fit different research questions. The major disadvantage to the wind tunnel setup described here, is the clean odor background which necessitates special attention when developing a synthetic volatile blend for field application.
No abstract has been registered
Academic – Abscisic acid regulates anthocyanin biosynthesis and gene expression associated with cell wall modification in ripening bilberry (vaccinium myrtillus l.) fruits
Katja Hannele Karppinen, Pinja Tegelberg, Hely Häggman, ...
Ripening of non-climacteric bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) fruit is characterized by a high accumulation of health-beneficial anthocyanins. Plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA) and sucrose have been shown to be among the central signaling molecules coordinating non-climacteric fruit ripening and anthocyanin accumulation in some fruits such as strawberry. Our earlier studies have demonstrated an elevation in endogenous ABA level in bilberry fruit at the onset of ripening indicating a role for ABA in the regulation of bilberry fruit ripening. In the present study, we show that the treatment of unripe green bilberry fruits with exogenous ABA significantly promotes anthocyanin biosynthesis and accumulation both in fruits attached and detached to the plant. In addition, ABA biosynthesis inhibitor, fluridone, delayed anthocyanin accumulation in bilberries. Exogenous ABA also induced the expression of several genes involved in cell wall modification in ripening bilberry fruits. Furthermore, silencing of VmNCED1, the key gene in ABA biosynthesis, was accompanied by the down-regulation in the expression of key anthocyanin biosynthetic genes. In contrast, the treatment of unripe green bilberry fruits with exogenous sucrose or glucose did not lead to an enhancement in the anthocyanin accumulation neither in fruits attached to plant nor in post-harvest fruits. Moreover, sugars failed to induce the expression of genes associated in anthocyanin biosynthesis or ABA biosynthesis while could elevate expression of some genes associated with cell wall modification in post-harvest bilberry fruits. Our results demonstrate that ABA plays a major role in the regulation of ripening-related processes such as anthocyanin biosynthesis and cell wall modification in bilberry fruit, whereas sugars seem to have minor regulatory roles in the processes. The results indicate that the regulation of bilberry fruit ripening differs from strawberry that is currently considered as a model of nonclimacteric fruit ripening. In this study, we also identified transcription factors, which expression was enhanced by ABA, as potential regulators of ABA-mediated bilberry fruit ripening processes.
Academic – Accelerated increase in plant species richness on mountain summits is linked to warming
Manuel J. Steinbauer, John-Arvid Grytnes, Gerald Jurasinski, ...
Globally accelerating trends in societal development and human environmental impacts since the mid-twentieth century1–7 are known as the Great Acceleration and have been discussed as a key indicator of the onset of the Anthropocene epoch6 . While reports on ecological responses (for example, changes in species range or local extinctions) to the Great Acceleration are multiplying8,9 , it is unknown whether such biotic responses are undergoing a similar acceleration over time. This knowledge gap stems from the limited availability of time series data on biodiversity changes across large temporal and geographical extents. Here we use a dataset of repeated plant surveys from 302 mountain summits across Europe, spanning 145 years of observation, to assess the temporal trajectory of mountain biodiversity changes as a globally coherent imprint of the Anthropocene. We find a continent-wide acceleration in the rate of increase in plant species richness, with five times as much species enrichment between 2007 and 2016 as fifty years ago, between 1957 and 1966. This acceleration is strikingly synchronized with accelerated global warming and is not linked to alternative global change drivers. The accelerating increases in species richness on mountain summits across this broad spatial extent demonstrate that acceleration in climate-induced biotic change is occurring even in remote places on Earth, with potentially far-ranging consequences not only for biodiversity, but also for ecosystem functioning and services.
Lecture – Acculturation in Food Choices among U.S. Immigrants
Kyrre Rickertsen, Diansheng Dong, Geir Wæhler Gustavsen, ...
No abstract has been registered
Academic – Acetylation of Pinus radiata delays hydrolytic depolymerisation by the brown-rot fungus Rhondonia placenta
Harold Greeley Beck, Olav Aaseth Hegnar, Carl Gunnar Fossdal, ...
Acetylation of wood can provide protection against wood deteriorating fungi, but the exact degradation me- chanism remains unclear. The aim of this study was to determine the eﬀect of acetylation of Pinus radiata wood (weight percent gain 13, 17 and 21%) on the expression of genes involved in decay by brown-rot fungus Rhodonia placenta. Gene expression analysis using qRT-PCR captured incipient to advanced decay stages. As expected the initiation of decay was delayed as a result the degree of acetylation. However, once decay was established, the rate of degradation in acetylated samples was similar to that of unmodi ﬁed wood. This suggests a delay in decay rather than an absolute protection threshold at higher acetylation levels. In accordance with previous studies, the oxidative system of R. placenta was more active in wood with higher degrees of acetylation and expression of cellulose active enzymes was delayed for acetylated samples compared to untreated samples. The reason for the delay in the latter might be because of the slower diﬀusion rate in acetylated wood or that partially acetylated cellobiose may be less eﬀective in triggering production of sacchariﬁcation enzymes. Enzymes involved in hemicellulose and pectin degradation have previously not been focused on in studies of degradation of acetylated wood. Surprisingly, CE16 carbohydrate esterase, assumed to be involved in deace- tylation of carbohydrates, was expressed signiﬁcantly more in untreated samples compared to highly acetylated samples. We hypothesise that this enzyme might be regulated through a negative feedback system, where acetic acid supresses the expression. The up-regulation of two expansin genes in acetylated samples suggests that their function, to loosen the cell wall, is needed more in acetylated wood due the physical bulking of the cell wall. In this study, we demonstrate that acetylation aﬀects the expression of speciﬁc target genes not previously re- ported, resulting in delayed initiation of decay. Thus, targeting these degradation mechanisms can contribute to improving wood protection systems.
Lecture – Active wildlife adventures – guidelines in a changing world
Hallvard Jensen, Paul Eric Aspholm, Bjørn Frantzen, ...
No abstract has been registered
Academic – Adaptability of hull-less barley varieties to different cropping systems and climatic conditions
Ievina Sturite, Arta Kronberga, Vija Strazdina, ...
Multilocation testing remains the main tool for understanding varietal responses to the environment. Here, Latvian and Norwegian hull-less and hulled barley varieties were tested in field experiments in Latvia and Norway in order to assess the varieties adaptability across environments (sites). Two Latvian (cv Irbe and cv Kornelija) and one Norwegian hull-less barley variety (cv Pihl) were tested along with one Latvian (cv Rubiola) and one Norwegian hulled barley variety (cv Tyra) under conventional and organic management systems. The grain yield, together with physical and chemical grain parameters were compared, and variety yield and protein stability detemined. Overall, grain yield of hull-less barley varieties was significantly lower than for hulled barley varieties regardless of climatic conditions and management system. However, in the organic farming systems this difference between barley types was less pronounced. The hull-less barley varieties cv Pihl and cv Irbe, along with both hulled varieties, had good yield stability across environments and were well adapted to both cropping systems. Hull-less barley varieties tended to contain more protein and β -glucans than hulled barley varieties. Despite being bred for local conditions in Norway and Latvia, our study shows that all the varieties used may be successfully transferred across countries.
Report – Adapting Innovation in Grassland Management - Book of abstracts - 20th meeting of the FAO-CIHEAM Mountain Pasture Network 9th – 12th September 2018 in Ballstad, Lofoten, Norway
Vibeke Lind, Grete H. M. Jørgensen, Ellen Pongo, ...
Academic – Adaptive biodiversity management of semi-natural hay meadows: The case of West-Norway
Sølvi Wehn, Rob J.F. Burton, Mark Riley, ...
Worldwide semi-natural habitats of high biological value are in decline. Consequently, numerous AgriEnvironment Schemes (AESs) intended to halt biodiversity loss within these habitats have been implemented. One approach has been the application of “adaptive management”, where scientific knowledge is applied alongside the traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) of stakeholders in order to establish an integrated approach that is adjusted as outcomes are assessed. In this paper we examine the effectiveness of the adaptive management approach of Norway’s Action Plan for Hay Meadows (APHM). Twenty-nine hay meadows from fourteen farms in the county of Møre og Romsdal were ecologically surveyed over a 2 year period. Interviews were also conducted with owners and land managers to explore TEK and management issues. The interdisciplinary study found that the disembedding of hay meadow management from its initial commercial purpose (in particular the loss of much of the livestock from the region) has contributed to a significant loss of TEK – which is now largely limited to knowledge of how the fields were managed recently. While, the APHM is limiting biodiversity decline by promoting traditional practices there were indications that the standardisation of management actions might negatively affect species composition in the long term. More critically, continued farm abandonment within the region means that without alternatives to management by farmers many of these meadows are likely to disappear in the next couple of decades. We conclude that adaptive management provides an effective short-term means of preserving hay meadows, but long term conservation will require a means of addressing the continued decline of local farming communities.