Agricultural Research | Date: 2015-10-13
A vessel having an opening for receiving the product and walls surrounding the vessel at all sides except the opening. The interior of the vessel is filled with a fluid having a specific gravity lower than a specific gravity of a medium surrounding the walls outside the vessel. While the vessel is oriented with the opening facing downwards, the vessel and/or product is/are conveyed to ensure that the product enters the interior through the opening.
Agricultural Research | Date: 2016-11-17
The present invention concerns a food supplement comprising Salvia sclarea seeds, or flour, oil or pulp or extracts obtained from the seeds as well as finished food products comprising the food supplement. The present invention further concerns a nutraceutical or cosmetic preparation comprising as an active ingredient Salvia sclarea seeds, or flour, oil or pulp or extracts obtained from the seeds.
News Article | March 2, 2017
The Ecological Society of America (ESA) will present the 2017 awards recognizing outstanding contributions to ecology in new discoveries, teaching, sustainability, diversity, and lifelong commitment to the profession during the Society's Annual Meeting in Portland, Ore. The awards ceremony will take place during the Scientific Plenary on Monday, August 7, at 8 AM in the Oregon Ballroom, Oregon Convention Center. Learn more about ESA awards on our home website. The Eminent Ecologist Award honors a senior ecologist for an outstanding body of ecological work or sustained ecological contributions of extraordinary merit. Soil ecologist Diana Wall, the founding director of the Colorado State University's School of Global Environmental Sustainability, is world-renowned for uncovering the importance of below-ground processes. Best known for her outstanding quarter century of research in the McMurdo Dry Valleys in Antarctica, one of the more challenging environments of the planet. Her research has revealed fundamental soil processes from deserts and forests to grasslands and agricultural ecosystems to New York City's Central Park. Dr. Wall's extensive collaborative work seeks to understand how the living component of soil contributes to ecosystem processes and human wellbeing--and to in turn uncover how humans impact soils, from local to global scales. In landmark studies, she revealed the key role of nematodes and other tiny animals as drivers of decomposition rates and carbon cycling. The biodiversity in soils, she found, influences ecosystem functioning and resilience to human disturbance, including climate change. She demonstrated that the biodiversity belowground can at times be decoupled from biodiversity aboveground. Her focus on nematodes in soils in very harsh environments, from the cold, dry Antarctic to hot, dry deserts, opened up a perspective on how life copes with extreme environments. She has a laudable record of publishing excellent papers in top-ranked scientific journals. Dr. Wall has played a vital role as an ecological leader, chairing numerous national and international committees and working groups and serving as president of the Ecological Society of America in 1999. She is a Fellow of ESA, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Society of Nematologists. In 2013, she received the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement for her outspoken efforts as an ambassador for the environmental and economic importance of soils and ecology. Currently, she is scientific chair of the Global Soil Biodiversity Initiative, which works to advance soil biodiversity for use in policy and management of terrestrial ecosystems. Dr. Wall is well-respected in her role as mentor of young scientists, over several generations, and as a communicator of science outside the usual academic arenas. Odum Award recipients demonstrate their ability to relate basic ecological principles to human affairs through teaching, outreach, and mentoring activities.? Kathleen Weathers is a senior scientist and the G.Evelyn Hutchinson chair of ecology at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, where she focuses on freshwater ecosystems. For more than a decade, she has been dedicated to advancing bottom-up network science, creating training opportunities for graduate students and tools for citizen science engagement. Her efforts strive to equip the next generation of ecologists and managers with the skills needed to protect freshwater resources. Dr Weathers played a guiding role in the formation of the Global Lake Ecological Observatory Network (GLEON), and currently acts as co-chair. A part of this international grassroots collaboration she helped develop Lake Observer, a crowd-sourcing App that streamlines the way that researchers and citizen scientists record water quality observations in lakes, rivers, and streams. Dr. Weathers has made it a priority to mentor students and early-career scientists participating in GLEON, with an eye toward diversity, inclusion, and instruction. She helped empower GLEON's student association, which contributes meaningfully to governance and training within the broader network. She also spearheaded the development of the GLEON Fellows Program, a two-year graduate immersion in data analysis, international collaboration, effective communication, and team science. The GLEON Fellows Program has emerged as a model for training initiatives in macrosystem ecology, and will affect the ecological community positively for decades to come, as participants carry their training forward to other institutions and endeavors. The Distinguished Service Citation recognizes long and distinguished volunteer service to ESA, the scientific community, and the larger purpose of ecology in the public welfare. Debra Peters is the founding editor-in-chief of ESA's newest journal, Ecosphere, created in 2010 to offer a rapid path to publication for research reports from across the spectrum of ecological science, including interdisciplinary studies that may have had difficulty finding a home within the scope of the existing ESA family of journals. In her hands the online-only, open-access journal has claimed a successful niche in the ecological publications landscape, expanding to publish over 400 manuscripts in 2016. Dr. Peters, an ecologist for the United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research service's (USDA-ARS) Jornada Experimental Range and lead principal investigator for the Jornada Basin Long Term Ecological Research program in Las Cruces, New Mexico, has served on the editorial boards of ESA's journals Ecological Applications, Ecology and Ecological Monographs. She chaired the society's Rangeland Section, was a founding member and chair of the Southwest Chapter, and has served as member-at-large on the Governing Board. As program chair for the 98th Annual Meeting of the society, she inaugurated the wildly popular Ignite talks, which give speakers the opportunity to present conceptual talks that do not fit into the standard research presentation format. Dr. Peters has greatly contributed to the broader research enterprise as senior advisor to the chief scientist at the USDA, and as a member of the National Ecological Observatory Network's (NEON) Board of Directors. She has provided this quite amazing array of services in support of the society and her profession while maintaining an outstanding level of research productivity and scientific leadership in landscape-level, cross-scale ecosystem ecology. Many of her more than 100 research publication have been cited more than 100 times. Her fine record of research led to her election as a Fellow of ESA and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In all respects, Debra Peters exemplifies distinguished service to the ESA, and to science. ESA's Commitment to Human Diversity in Ecology award recognizes long-standing contributions of an individual towards increasing the diversity of future ecologists through mentoring, teaching, or outreach. Gillian Bowser, research scientist in Colorado State University's Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory, is honored for her joyful and successful recruitment and retention of under-represented students to the study of ecology, to public service in support of the natural world, and to empowerment of women and minorities worldwide. The Cooper Award honors the authors of an outstanding publication in the field of geobotany, physiographic ecology, plant succession or the distribution of plants along environmental gradients. William S. Cooper was a pioneer of physiographic ecology and geobotany, with a particular interest in the influence of historical factors, such as glaciations and climate history, on the pattern of contemporary plant communities across landforms. University of Waterloo, Ontario professor Andrew Trant and colleagues at the University of Victoria and the Hakai Institute in British Columbia revealed a previously unappreciated historical influence on forest productivity: long-term residence of First Nations people. Counter to a more familiar story of damage to ecosystems inflicted by people and their intensive use of resources, the activities of native people on the Central Coast of British Columbia enhanced the fertility of the soil around habitation sites, leading to greater productivity of the dominant tree species, the economically and culturally valuable western redcedar (Thuja plicata Donn ex D. Don). Through a combination of airborne remote sensing and on-the-ground field work, the authors showed that forest height, width, canopy cover, and greenness increased on and near shell middens. They presented the first documentation of influence on forest productivity by the daily life activities of traditional human communities. The Mercer Award recognizes an outstanding and recently-published ecological research paper by young scientists. Biological invasions, and migrations of native species in response to climate change, are pressing areas of interest in this time of global change. Fragmentation of the landscape by natural and human-made barriers slows the velocity of spread, but it is not known how patchy habitat quality might influence the potential for evolution to accelerate invasions. Jennifer Williams, an assistant professor at the University of British Columbia, and colleagues implemented a creative experimental design using the model plant species Arabidopsis thaliana that allowed them to disentangle ecological and evolutionary dynamics during population expansion. Some plant populations were allowed to evolve, while others were continually reset to their original genetic composition. The authors convincingly demonstrate that rapid evolution can influence the speed at which populations spread, especially in fragmented landscapes. The Sustainability Science Award recognizes the authors of the scholarly work that makes the greatest contribution to the emerging science of ecosystem and regional sustainability through the integration of ecological and social sciences. Sustainability challenges like air pollution, biodiversity loss, climate change, energy and food security, disease spread, species invasion, and water shortages and pollution are often studied, and managed, separately, although they the problems they present are interconnected. Jianguo Liu and colleagues provide a framework for addressing global sustainability challenges from a coupled human and natural systems approach that incorporates both socioeconomic and environmental factors. They review several recent papers that have quantified at times conflicting efforts to provide ecosystem services, when these efforts are examined in a global perspective. The authors argue for the need to quantify spillover systems and feedbacks and to integrate analyses over multiple spatial and temporal scales. This will likely require the development of new analytical frameworks both to understand the social ecological mechanisms involved and to inform management and policy decisions for global sustainability. The Innovation in Sustainability Science Award recognizes the authors of a peer-reviewed paper published in the past five years exemplifying leading-edge work on solution pathways to sustainability challenges. One of the biggest challenges facing development of effective policy to address sustainability issues is that the concepts and vocabulary used by scientists to define and promote sustainability rarely translate into effective policy, because they do not include measures of success. This challenge is particularly apparent in the concept of stability and resilience, terms which are frequently used in policy statements and have long been the subject of empirical and theoretical research in ecology, but for which there are no easily defined and quantified metrics. Ian Donohue and colleagues argue that much of the fault for this disconnect lies with the academic community. They summarize and analyze a number of examples to support their claim that ecologists have taken a one-dimensional approach to quantifying stability and disturbance when these are actually multi-dimensional processes. They argue that this has led to confused communication of the nature of stability, which contributes to the lack of adoption of clear policies. They propose three areas where future research is needed and make clear recommendations for better integrating the multidimensional nature of stability into research, policy and actions that should become a priority for all involved in sustainability science. The Whittaker Award recognizes an ecologist with an earned doctorate and an outstanding record of contributions in ecology who is not a U.S. citizen and who resides outside the United States. Petr Pyšek, the chair of the Department of Invasion Ecology at the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, is honored for his pioneering and insightful work in invasion ecology. Dr. Pyšek is editor-in-chief of Preslia (Journal of the Czech Botanical Society) and serves on the editorial boards of Biological Invasions, Diversity and Distributions, Folia Geobotanica, and Perspectives on Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics. The Shreve award supplies $1,000-2,000 to support ecological research by graduate or undergraduate student members of ESA in the hot deserts of North America (Sonora, Mohave, Chihuahua, and Vizcaino). Daniel Winkler, a PhD student with Travis Huxman at University of California Irvine, studies the invasion of Sahara mustard (Brassica tournefortii) in the Mojave, Sonoran, and Chihuahuan deserts. His dissertation focuses on determining the source populations of Sahara mustard and whether plasticity in functional traits is allowing the species to spread. Funds from the Forrest Shreve Student Research Fund will be used to process samples for leaf stable isotopes and elemental stoichiometry, allowing for a comparison of functional traits indicative of local adaptation and the species' plasticity. Daniel was a National Park Service Young Leaders in Climate Change Fellow and a NSF EAPSI Research Fellow. Learn more about the August 7-12, 2017 ESA Annual Meeting on the meeting website: http://esa. ESA welcomes attendance from members of the press and waives registration fees for reporters and public information officers. To apply, please contact ESA Communications Officer Liza Lester directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Ecological Society of America (ESA), founded in 1915, is the world's largest community of professional ecologists and a trusted source of ecological knowledge, committed to advancing the understanding of life on Earth. The 10,000 member Society publishes five journals and a membership bulletin and broadly shares ecological information through policy, media outreach, and education initiatives. The Society's Annual Meeting attracts 4,000 attendees and features the most recent advances in ecological science. Visit the ESA website at http://www. .
News Article | February 15, 2017
It may not be the most romantic way to spend Valentine’s Day, but Dr. Georges Benjamin had been looking forward to a trip to Atlanta. On Feb. 14, he said, he was scheduled to speak along with former Vice President Al Gore at the opening session of a conference hosted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The topic: the health effects of climate change. But in the weeks after Donald Trump won the presidential election, Benjamin received word that the conference would not be happening as scheduled. “It is very unusual,” said Benjamin, the executive director of the American Public Health Assn. However, considering Trump’s skepticism toward the idea that industrial activity is warming the planet — a position held by 97% of climate scientists — it wasn’t entirely surprising, he said. “I’m sure that was on their minds,” Benjamin said. “I know that was on their minds.” The conference hasn’t been officially canceled. The CDC is “exploring options to reschedule the meeting while considering budget priorities for fiscal year 2017,” according to a statement from the agency. Some would-be attendees said they aren’t holding their breath. In their view, it’s just one in a series of unsettling actions that have come to light in the first days of the Trump administration. Just hours after the inauguration, the official White House website was scrubbed of any mention of climate change. Following that, scientists and other employees at several federal agencies were told not to speak directly to the public about their work. “I fear we’re going to see a war on scientists inside the government,” Norman Ornstein, a government scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, said Thursday in a meeting sponsored by the American Assn. for the Advancement of Science. Among other things, Ornstein cited efforts to block the publication of research findings until they’ve been vetted by political appointees as “a troubling sign of where we might be headed.” The communication restrictions extended to social media, including messages sent via Twitter, Trump’s preferred mode of communication. “It looks like we are going on hiatus,” announced a tweet sent Wednesday from the account of the United States Arctic Research Commission. “To keep up on arctic science, sign up for the Arctic Daily Update at arctic.gov.” At the U.S. Department of Agriculture, employees in the Agricultural Research Service were asked to keep their lips sealed. “Starting immediately and until further notice, ARS will not release any public-facing documents,” Sharon Drumm, the chief of staff, wrote in an email. “This includes, but is not limited to, news releases, photos, fact sheets, news feeds and social media content.” The message did not go over well. A second email, this time from ARS Administrator Chavonda Jacobs-Young, was sent Tuesday to clarify matters. “The departmental guidance does not, and was never intended, to cover all public-facing documents,” she wrote. “For example, scientific publications released through peer reviewed professional journals are not covered.” Employees at the Environmental Protection Agency received a similar admonition against communicating directly with the public. In addition, transition team spokesman Doug Ericksen told NPR that scientists will need to have their work vetted before they can share it. Officials emphasized that this was standard procedure after a change in power. “The EPA fully intends to continue to provide information to the public,” the agency said in a statement. “A fresh look at public affairs and communications processes is common practice for any new administration, and a short pause in activities allows for this assessment.” Routine or not, the moves are making some scientists uncomfortable. Rush Holt, a physicist and former congressman who now leads the American Assn. for the Advancement of Science, issued a statement expressing concern that these moves “may silence the voices” of scientists who work in the federal government. He noted that “many federal agencies have existing scientific integrity policies that prohibit political interference in the public dissemination of scientific findings.” The CDC’s decision not to proceed as scheduled with its February conference on climate change and health was “motivated by political concerns,” said Dr. Howard Frumkin, a professor of environmental and occupational health sciences at the University of Washington. Frumkin said he was told this by “reliable sources within the CDC,” where he previously worked as a special assistant to the director for climate change and health.
News Article | February 18, 2017
Over many thousands of years, farmers have bred maize varieties so the crops are optimally adapted to local environments. A new study, published Feb. 6 in Nature Genetics, analyzed close to 4,500 maize varieties - called landraces - bred and grown by farmers from 35 countries in the Americas to identify more than 1,000 genes driving large-scale adaptation to the environment. "The study provided a powerful catalog of the genes necessary for corn to adapt to different latitudes and elevations across the world," said senior author Edward Buckler, a research geneticist at the USDA-Agricultural Research Service and adjunct professor of plant breeding and genetics at the Institute for Genomic Diversity at Cornell. "It takes a thousand genes to attune a plant for a particular latitude and the elevation where it is grown. That's what we are mapping here," Buckler said. The researchers also identified genes associated with flowering time - the period between planting and the emergence of flowers, which is a measure of the rate of development. Flowering time is a basic mechanism through which plants integrate environmental information to balance when to make seeds instead of more leaves. "Flowering time is the trait that is most correlated with every other trait," Buckler said. The study found that more than half of single nucleotide polymorphisms (the most basic form of genetic variation) associated with altitude were also associated with flowering time, revealing these traits are highly linked. Current technology, including a new rapid experimental design called F-One Association Mapping (FOAM), allowed the researchers to use the collection of diverse maize varieties to figure out which genes were important for adaptation. "With global climate change over the next century, we can directly use this information to figure out what genes are important" to greatly speed up breeding efforts of maize, Buckler said. "We're tapping the wisdom of farmers over the last 10,000 years to make the next century's corn." Sarah Hearne, a molecular geneticist at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and a maize research lead scientist with Seeds of Discovery, is also a senior author of the paper. J. Alberto Romero Navarro, a doctoral student in plant breeding and genetics, is the paper's first author. Hearne and colleagues at CIMMYT envisioned the project, led the logistical efforts and conducted field trials, while Romero, Buckler and Cornell colleagues led the genomic analysis of the data. The study was supported by Mexico's Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food through the Sustainable Modernization of Traditional Agriculture initiative. Additional support from the USDA-Agricultural Research Service, Cornell University and the National Science Foundation facilitated the completion of the data analysis.
News Article | February 15, 2017
A new study, published Feb. 6 in Nature Genetics, analyzed close to 4,500 maize varieties – called landraces – bred and grown by farmers from 35 countries in the Americas to identify more than 1,000 genes driving large-scale adaptation to the environment. "The study provided a powerful catalog of the genes necessary for corn to adapt to different latitudes and elevations across the world," said senior author Edward Buckler, a research geneticist at the USDA-Agricultural Research Service and adjunct professor of plant breeding and genetics at the Institute for Genomic Diversity at Cornell. "It takes a thousand genes to attune a plant for a particular latitude and the elevation where it is grown. That's what we are mapping here," Buckler said. The researchers also identified genes associated with flowering time – the period between planting and the emergence of flowers, which is a measure of the rate of development. Flowering time is a basic mechanism through which plants integrate environmental information to balance when to make seeds instead of more leaves. "Flowering time is the trait that is most correlated with every other trait," Buckler said. The study found that more than half of single nucleotide polymorphisms (the most basic form of genetic variation) associated with altitude were also associated with flowering time, revealing these traits are highly linked. Current technology, including a new rapid experimental design called F-One Association Mapping (FOAM), allowed the researchers to use the collection of diverse maize varieties to figure out which genes were important for adaptation. "With global climate change over the next century, we can directly use this information to figure out what genes are important" to greatly speed up breeding efforts of maize, Buckler said. "We're tapping the wisdom of farmers over the last 10,000 years to make the next century's corn." Sarah Hearne, a molecular geneticist at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) and a maize research lead scientist with Seeds of Discovery, is also a senior author of the paper. J. Alberto Romero Navarro, a doctoral student in plant breeding and genetics, is the paper's first author. Hearne and colleagues at CIMMYT envisioned the project, led the logistical efforts and conducted field trials,while Romero, Buckler and Cornell colleagues led the genomic analysis of the data. Explore further: Genomic tools can help researchers develop crops quickly
News Article | February 20, 2017
Annapolis, MD; Feb. 13, 2017 -- Pest ants like the red imported fire ant could be controlled more effectively with insecticide baits that can withstand moisture, say researchers with the United States Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS). A comparison study soon to be published in Journal of Economic Entomology shows a water-resistant ant bait offers a significant advantage over currently available baits, which break down when wet. The red imported fire ant and the little fire ant are just two species of invasive ants that have thrived since their introduction to the U.S. The former has spread through much of the southeastern United States, while the latter has become widespread on the Big Island of Hawaii. In both locales, moisture in the environment means existing baits have limitations. However, a new ant bait formulation that is water-resistant offers promise. A team led by Robert K. Vander Meer, Ph.D., at the USDA-ARS Center for Medical, Agricultural, and Veterinary Entomology in the Imported Fire Ant and Household Insects Research Unit, conducted an experiment that deployed existing ant baits and water-resistant baits in closely matched wet conditions. Both baits carry an active ingredient that inhibits the ability of an ant colony's queen to produce eggs. At the end of the 13-week test period, half of the red imported fire ant colonies exposed to standard bait were no longer producing worker ants, while none of the colonies exposed to the water-resistant bait were producing workers. Vander Meer says the experiment was designed carefully to ensure that similar-sized ant colonies were compared and that they were exposed to baits under the same moisture and temperature conditions. "If you're comparing two formulations of the same insecticide, at the same rates, then you have to control variables as much as you can, or else you're not going to be able to show significant differences between the two," he says. "We were very happily surprised." The water-resistant, or hydrophobic, ant bait, Erasant, is produced in Taiwan, by Chung Hsi Chemical Plant Ltd. The company has a U.S. patent, but the bait is not currently available in the United States. "Our objective is to ultimately provide better control tools to the public for the control of pest ants and, in particular, the fire ant. Ideally, we would like to see this appear as a product at some time in the future here in the U.S., because I think it could be very useful in terms of providing a very good control method that is not affected by the heavy moisture that we deal with in the southeast," says Vander Meer. USDA-ARS is conducting further testing of the water-resistant ant bait, in irrigated plant environments in California and Florida as well as tropical areas such as Hawaii. "Enhanced Pest Ant Control With Hydrophobic Bait," by Robert K. Vander Meer and David E, Milne, will be published in the Journal of Economic Entomology on February 20, 2017. Journalists may request advance copies via the contact below. ABOUT: ESA is the largest organization in the world serving the professional and scientific needs of entomologists and people in related disciplines. Founded in 1889, ESA today has over 6,000 members affiliated with educational institutions, health agencies, private industry, and government. The Society stands ready as a scientific and educational resource for all insect-related topics. For more information, visit http://www. . Journal of Economic Entomology publishes research on the economic significance of insects and is the highest-cited journal in entomology. It includes sections on apiculture and social insects, insecticides, biological control, household and structural insects, crop protection, forest entomology, and more. For more information, visit https:/ , or visit https:/ to view the full portfolio of ESA journals and publications.
Agricultural Research, Yeda Research, Development Co. and Tel Aviv University | Date: 2013-12-26
Lactic acid cell cultures for processing lignocellulose are disclosed. The bacterial culture may comprise a biomass composition and a population of lactic acid bacteria which comprises: (i) a first population of lactic acid bacteria which has been genetically modified to express a secreted cellulase; and (ii) a second population of lactic acid bacteria which has been genetically modified to express a secreted xylanase, wherein the ratio of the first population: second population is selected such that the specific activity of cellulase:xylanase in the culture is greater than 4:1 or less than 1:4.
Agricultural Research | Date: 2014-11-12
A method for breeding tomato plants that produce tomatoes with reduced fruit water content including the steps of crossing at least one Lycopersicon esculentum plant with a Lycopersicon spp. to produce hybrid seed, collecting the first generation of hybrid seeds, growing plants from the first generation of hybrid seeds, pollinating the plants of the most recent hybrid generation, collecting the seeds produced by the most recent hybrid generation, growing plants from the seeds of the most recent hybrid generation, allowing plants to remain on the vine past the point of normal ripening, and screening for reduced fruit water content as indicated by extended preservation of the ripe fruit and wrinkling of the fruit skin.
Agricultural Research | Date: 2013-05-07
An induction charging nozzle assembly includes two branches of one or two electrodes, a nozzle and a power supply. The nozzle is positioned to spray an atomized spray of a liquid between parallel portions of the electrode branches. The power supply applies an electrical potential to the electrode(s) relative to the (grounded) liquid so that the liquid acquires an electrical charge when sprayed from the nozzle. Preferably, the nozzle is a hydraulic flat fan nozzle. The atomized spray preferably has a volume mean diameter between 80 microns and 140 microns and a charge-to-mass ratio of at least 0.8 mC/kg.