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Zhang X.,University of Georgia | Zhang X.,China Agri cultural University | Douglas R.N.,Cornell University | Strable J.,Cornell University | And 6 more authors.
Plant Physiology | Year: 2012

The maize (Zea mays) gene RAGGED SEEDLING2-R (RGD2-R) encodes an ARGONAUTE7-like protein required for the biogenesis of trans-acting small interfering RNA, which regulates the accumulation of AUXIN RESPONSE FACTOR3A transcripts in shoots. Although dorsiventral polarity is established in the narrow and cylindrical leaves of rgd2-R mutant plants, swapping of adaxial/abaxial epidermal identity occurs and suggests a model wherein RGD2 is required to coordinate dorsiventral and mediolateral patterning in maize leaves. Laser microdissection-microarray analyses of the rgd2-R mutant shoot apical meristem identified a novel gene, PUNCTATE VASCULAR EXPRESSION1 (PVE1), that is down-regulated in rgd2-R mutant apices. Transcripts of PVE1 provide an early molecular marker for vascular morphogenesis. Reverse genetic analyses suggest that PVE1 functions during vascular development and in mediolateral and dorsiventral patterning of maize leaves. Molecular genetic analyses of PVE1 and of rgd2-R;pve1-M2 double mutants suggest a model wherein PVE1 functions downstream of RGD2 in a pathway that intersects and interacts with the trans-acting small interfering RNA pathway. © 2012 American Society of Plant Biologists. All Rights Reserved. Source

Van-Diep L.,China Agri cultural University | Zheng X-.W.,China Agri cultural University | Zheng X-.W.,Wageningen University | Ma K.,China Agri cultural University | And 4 more authors.
Journal of the Institute of Brewing | Year: 2011

Fe n liquor is typical of Chinese light-flavour liquor (alcoholic spirit), which is fermented from sorghum with Fen -Daqu powder. Fe n -Daqu is a saccharifying agent and fermentation starter in this fermentation process and in Fe n traditional vinegar. To investigate the changes of biochemical components in Fen -Daqu during the incubation, samples at seven incubation stages were analyzed by 1H nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrome-try and principal component analysis (PCA). This revealed clear separation of the samples obtained from different incubation stages in the principal component plots by combining PC1 and PC2, which cumulatively accounted for 93.27% of the variance. The major compounds that contributed to discrimination were acetate/alanine, arginine, ascorbate, betaine, choline, ethanol, fructose, galactose, glucose, glucitol, glycerate, lactate, maltose, mannitol, phenylalanine, proline, propylene glycol, threonine and tryptophan. These compounds were regarded as the representative metabolites or biomarkers characteristic for each incubation stage and were related with microbiological changes of importance for quality control in Fe n-Daqu production. © 2011 The Institute of Brewing & Distilling. Source

Zheng X.-W.,Wageningen University | Zheng X.-W.,China Agri cultural University | Tabrizi M.R.,China Agri cultural University | Robert Nout M.J.,Wageningen University | Han B.-Z.,China Agri cultural University
Journal of the Institute of Brewing | Year: 2011

Chinese liquor is one of the world's oldest distilled alcoholic beverages, and it is typically obtained with the use of Daqu fer- mentation starters. Daqu is a saccharifying and fermenting agent, having a significant impact on the flavour of the product. Daqu can be categorized according to maximum incubation temperatures (high, medium and low) and flavour (sauce, strong, light and miscellaneous). Most Daqu are prepared by solid-state fermentation from wheat, barley and/or peas with ingredient formulation, grinding and mixing, shaping, incubation and matu- ration. Although there is a wealth of artisanal experience in the production of a range of different types of Daqu, the scientific knowledge base-including the microbiota, their enzymes and their metabolic activities-needs further development. Daqu as a specific alcoholic starter is compared with other Asian amy- lolytic fermentation starters in terms of microbial diversity and function. Filamentous fungi (Rhizopus, Rhizomucor, Aspergillus and other genera), yeasts (Saccharomyces, Candida, Hansenula and other genera) and bacteria (acetic acid bacteria, lactic acid bacteria and Bacillus spp.), are considered to be the functional microbiota, responsible for the formation of a range of lytic enzymes, formation of substrates for alcoholic fermentation and formation of flavour compounds. However, the knowledge about the microbiota composition and their function is still fragmen- tary information, so further research is required to establish the functionality and growth kinetics of the microbiota in diverse types of Daqu. © 2011 The Institute of Brewing & Distilling. Source

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