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Petriccione M.,Italian Agricultural Research Council | Papa S.,Biological and Pharmaceutical Science and Technology | Ciniglia C.,Biological and Pharmaceutical Science and Technology
Environmental Science and Pollution Research | Year: 2014

Walnut husk washing waters (WHWW), a by-product of walnut production, are indiscriminately used for irrigation without preliminary risk assessment. Basing on previous in vitro results on the toxicity of this by-product, we have followed the morphophysiological development of Zea mays, Lactuca sativa cv. Gentilina and L. sativa cv. Canasta under diluted and undiluted WHWW irrigation. Significant development alterations have been observed in root and shoot elongations for all crops as well as in total biomass and chlorophyll content. The genotoxic potential of WHWW has been concurrently verified; acridine orange/ethidium bromide staining evidenced chromatin modifications and DNA degradation and also was confirmed by DNA laddering. The DNA instability was also assessed through RAPD, thus suggesting the danger of the by-product of walnut processing and focusing the attention on the necessity of an efficient treatment of WHWWs. The findings obtained by PCA of agronomic and physiological traits suggested that establishing guidelines for the administration of WHWW for irrigation is of great importance, and it is necessary to supervise their use in agricultural soils. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Palmieri M.,Biological and Pharmaceutical Science and Technology | Russo L.,Biological and Pharmaceutical Science and Technology | Malgieri G.,Biological and Pharmaceutical Science and Technology | Esposito S.,Biological and Pharmaceutical Science and Technology | And 12 more authors.
Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry | Year: 2014

The zinc coordination sphere in prokaryotic zinc finger domain is extremely versatile and influences the stability and the folding property of the domain. Of a particular interest is the fourth zinc coordinating position, which is frequently occupied by two successive histidines, both able to coordinate the metal ion. To clarify their structural and functional role we report the NMR solution structure and the dynamics behavior of Ros87 H42A, which is a functional mutant of Ros87, the DNA binding domain of the Ros protein containing a prokaryotic Cys2His2 zinc finger domain. The structural analysis indicates that reducing the spacer among the two coordinating histidines from 4 (among His37 and His42) amino acids to 3 (among His37 and His41) increases the helicity of the first α-helix. At the same time, the second helix appears more mobile in the μs-ms timescale and the hydrophobic core is reduced. These data explain the high frequency of three-residue His spacers in the eukaryotic zinc finger domain and their absence in the prokaryotic counterpart. Furthermore, the structural comparison shows that the second coordination position is more sensitive to H42A mutation with respect to the first and the third position, providing the rationale of the high variability of the second and the fourth zinc coordinating position in Ros homologs, which adopt different metal coordination but preserve similar tertiary structures and DNA binding activities. Finally, H/D exchange measurements and NMR thermal unfolding analysis indicate that this mutant likely unfolds via a different mechanism with respect to the wild-type. © 2013 Published by Elsevier Inc. Source

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