Ecto-Mycorrhizal Fungi: A Stronger Role In Pathogen Defense than In Nutrient Uptake — Journal of Ecology blog

In this new video, Felipe Albornoz presents the findings of his recent study, accepted for publication in Journal of Ecology, and titled ‘Native soilborne pathogens equalize differences in competitive ability between plants of contrasting nutrient-acquisition strategies‘. This study was part of Felipe’s PhD project on the role of mycorrhizal fungi on plant-plant interactions and in maintaining plant diversity, that he […]

via Ecto-Mycorrhizal Fungi: A Stronger Role In Pathogen Defense than In Nutrient Uptake — Journal of Ecology blog

Bacterial isolates from seagrass samples: a new approach — The Seagrass Microbiome Project

So for the last couple of years I’ve supervised a series of undergraduates who have spent some time isolating bacteria from seagrass samples… sometimes from the plants themselves and sometimes from associated sediment. We usually used non-specific aerobic media such as Marine Broth and Seawater Nutrient Agar. The result has been a series of the […]

via Bacterial isolates from seagrass samples: a new approach — The Seagrass Microbiome Project

Ecological intensification of agriculture: ideas that begin to take root — The Applied Ecologist’s blog

In this post Nahuel Policelli discusses a recent paper by Timothy M. Bowles and colleagues ‘Ecological intensification and arbuscular mycorrhizas: a meta-analysis of tillage and cover crop effects‘ In a context of increasing global food demands, ecological intensification of agriculture emerges as an ideal approach for land management. It combines the benefits of intensive and […]

via Ecological intensification of agriculture: ideas that begin to take root — The Applied Ecologist’s blog

Past climate changes facilitated homoploid speciation in three mountain spiny fescues

How much do we actually know about the impact of climate changes as a driven factor of speciation? Here is a example of how it help in the establishment of a new homoploid hybrid species: http://rdcu.be/msmM

To investigate this question, we selected an hypothetical natural fescue hybrid between two diploid species that occurs in two different mountain ranges (Cantabrian Mountains and Pyrenees) separated by more than 400 km. To unravel the outcomes of this mode of speciation and the impact of climate during speciation we used a multidisciplinary approach combining genome size and chromosome counts, data from an extensive nuclear genotypic analysis, plastid sequences and ecological niche models (ENM). Our results show that the same homoploid hybrid was originated independently in the two mountain ranges, being currently isolated from both parents and producing viable seeds. Parental species had the opportunity to contact as early as 21000 years ago although niche divergence occurs nowadays as result of a climate-driven shift. A high degree of niche divergence was observed between the hybrid and its parents and no recent introgression or backcrossed hybrids were detected, supporting the current presence of reproductive isolation barriers between these species.

It is nice to see it finally published through our Marie Skłodowska-Curie IOF project ORIGIN 🙂

Genetic diversity in the model species Brachypodium stacei

brachypodiumOur article of Brachypodium stacei has finally been published today! This is the first article of our PhD student Valeria Shiposha where she has studied population structure and genetic variation among 181 individuals from 19 populations of B. stacei occurring in its predominant range, the western Mediterranean area: mainland Iberian Peninsula, continental Balearic Islands and oceanic Canary Islands. She has found a predominant selfing system with extremely high levels of homozygosity across the analyzed populations. The article is fully available on the open access Journal PeerJ: https://peerj.com/articles/2407/

Congratulations to all co-authors and especially to Valeria Shiposha for the publication of her first article!! Yeah!!

 

Companion: a new tool to generate and visualize annotation of parasite genomes

What happens if a lot of parasite genomes are generated to fight disease and generate vaccines and drugs, but no one can compare those genomes? Sascha Steinbiss & Thomas Otto answer this question in this blog, originally posted on the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute website.

Source: Companion: a new tool to generate and visualize annotation of parasite genomes

Peer review – do we need gradual improvements or a revolution?

How editors conduct peer review, how this process is evolving and whether we can trust the new players entering the field, the responsibilities of reviewers and how to recognize and reward all the effort put in to peer review. These were only some of the topics discussed by the panel and the audience of the “Peer review – the nuts and bolts” session at the EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF) in Manchester, UK on Sunday 24 July.

Source: Peer review – do we need gradual improvements or a revolution?