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A Field Guide to the Orchids of Great Britain and Ireland
An Ethnobotanical Guide to Hawaiian Sugarcane Cultivars
The Enduring Relationship between Plant and Pollinator
An Identification Guide

Abstract

Papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) is a common malignancy worldwide. LncRNA LINC00704 (mitotically associated long non-coding RNA) was reported as a crucial regulator in PTC. However, the biological mechanism of LINC00704 action remains unclear in PTC. The mRNA levels of LINC00704, miR-204-5p, and high-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) were measured by quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) assay. HMGB1, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), and cyclin D1 protein levels were detected using the Western blot assay. The binding relationship between miR-204-5p and LINC00704 or HMGB1 was predicted by LncBase Predicted v.2 or TargetScan, respectively, and then validated by dual luciferase reporter assay. Cell viability, cell cycle, cell migration and invasion, and migration ratio were assessed by MTT, flow cytometry, transwell cell migration and invasion, and wound-healing assays, respectively. Results suggested that LINC00704 and HMGB1 were elevated and miR-204-5p decreased in PTC tissues and cells. Furthermore, rescue experiments demonstrated that the miR-204-5p inhibitor alleviated the inhibitory effects of LINC00704 knockdown on cell proliferation, cell cycle, migration, and invasion. Meanwhile, miR-204-5p overexpression repressed proliferation, migration, and invasion by targeting HMGB1. Mechanical analysis discovered that LINC00704 could act as an miR-204-5p sponge to modulate HMGB1 expression. In conclusion, LINC00704 promoted PTC cell proliferation, cell cycle, migration, and invasion by the miR-204-5p/HMGB1 axis, providing a novel therapeutic target for PTC patients.

Abstract

A survey of driftwood and mangrove wood in South Australia revealed a high diversity of marine fungi. Across eight sites there were 43 species of marine fungi, of which 42 are new records for South Australia, 11 new records for Australia and 12 taxa currently of uncertain status likely to be new species. Sites had distinctive species compositions with the largest difference attributable to substrate type (beach driftwood vs. mangrove wood). However, even between mangrove sites, species assemblages were distinctly different with only the more common species occurring at all mangrove sites. More intensive surveys across a broader range of habitats and geographic locations should reveal significantly more species.

Abstract

The Sierra Leonean government has implemented the improved rice varieties directed at enhancing more rice production to reduce food insecurity. This paper evaluates the food security effect of improved rice variety adoption using cross-sectional data collected in 2017 from a randomly selected sample of 624 rice farmers in Sierra Leone. The analysis uses the endogenous switching regression and propensity score matching (PSM) approach. The results revealed that the adoption of improved rice varieties has a significant positive effect on food security. That confirms the crucial role of improved rice variety adoption in increasing food production and food security. Therefore, the study recommended the intensification of policies that promote improved rice variety adoption, if more food production and food security are to be realized. Further, the government should continue the lead in rice variety promotion and dissemination and in enhancing an enabling environment for the effective adoption of farmers. Given the preponderant evidence of the different factors of food security, appropriate policies that seek to promote formal education, more income generation for farmers, and easy and credible access to farmland for landless farmers would enhance food security.

Abstract

In the confectionery market, jelly gums are one of the most relevant sectors, being frequently consumed by many people, from children to adults. The present work intended to evaluate the textural properties in newly developed jelly gums made with berry fruits and herbs, given the critical role of texture in products with a gel-like structure. Four types of gums were developed (Strawberry & Anise, Strawberry & Mint, Raspberry & Mint, Blueberry & Mint) and their texture was evaluated through two types of tests (compression with a 75 mm probe and puncture with a 2 mm probe) allowing to calculate several textural properties. The results showed some differences between the two faces of the jelly gums analysed, i.e. on the top and on the bottom. As for the compression test, the Strawberry & Anise gums were among the softer (25.6 N) and with lower resilience (36.3%) and chewiness (16.9 N), despite being more adhesive (−0.5 N s). As for the puncture test, the sample Strawberry & Mint had the highest adhesiveness (−2.0 N s) but the lowest stickiness (−0.38 N). Additionally, very strong correlations were encountered between some of the properties studied (r = 0.861 or r = 0.822), and the factor analysis allowed defining three factors, the first clearly associated with the puncture properties while the other two were related to the compression properties. This work allowed concluding that the jelly gums presented different textural properties, particularly when assessed through different types of measurements. Hence, the use of different types of tests for texture analysis is recommended, since the results are complementary. This is relevant when developing food products intended for industrial production and commercialization.

Abstract

The article presents a method of obtaining films based on carboxymethyl polysaccharide derivatives cross-linked with citric acid and reinforced with cellulose fibers (CFs). The addition of CFs to a film improves the mechanical properties of the composite. With the increase of filler content, the water solubility drops from 64 to 61%, respectively, for a system without a filler and that containing 7 wt% CFs, whereas Young’s modulus increases from 4.8 to 24.8 MPa for a film containing 5 wt% filler.

Abstract

The fruits of myrtle at different stages of development, namely green (G), colour break (C) and mature (M), were used to investigate the changes of fruit quality and anthocyanin composition during its development. Five anthocyanin components, such as delphinidin (Dp), cyanidin (Cy), pelargonidin (Pg), peonidin (Pn) and malvidin (Mv), were detected. Among them, the content of Dp glucoside was the highest (2.12 μg · g−1) and the content of Pn glucoside was the lowest (0.17 μg · g−1) at the green stage. The content of Cy glucoside was the highest (120.94 and 1,200.03 μg · g−1), and the content of Mv glucoside was the lowest (19.50 and 62.72 μg · g−1) at the colour break and mature stages. The single fruit weight, vertical diameter and transverse diameter at the mature stage were significantly higher than those at the colour break and the green stages by 0.87 g, 1.27 mm, 1.53 mm and 1.54 g, 3.4 mm, 3.55 mm, respectively. Fruit quality, the contents of soluble sugar and carotenoids, gradually increased with the development of fruit; and the contents were the highest at the mature stage (17.68% and 16.90 μg · L−1). The contents of titratable acidity, total phenol, flavonoids, chlorophyll a and total chlorophyll gradually decreased with the development of fruit, the content was the lowest at the mature stage (2.71 mmol · 100 g−1, 9.29 μg · g−1, 0.1%, 0.37 μg · L−1, 0.9 μg · L−1) and the content was the highest at the green stage (5.25 mmol · 100 g−1, 21.07 μg · g−1, 0.17%, 8.86 μg · L−1, 15.47 μg · L−1). The difference between the green period and the colour break period was significant.