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Nambour, Australia

Ko L.,Maroochy Research Facility | Eccleston K.,Maroochy Research Facility | O'Hare T.,University of Queensland | Wong L.,University of Queensland | And 2 more authors.
Scientia Horticulturae

A comparative analysis of transgenic pineapple lines transformed with a polyphenol oxidase (PPO) gene (ppo) and the untransformed cultivar 'Smooth Cayenne' was made from plants grown in a series of field trials under cool subtropical conditions in southeast Queensland. In the four field trials where blackheart was recorded, all of the control lines expressed blackheart on each occasion and exhibited the greatest incidence (50%) and severity (34%) of symptoms. Irrespective of the gene transfer method or the gene construct used, 38% of the lines produced were regarded as blackheart resistant, having no blackheart symptoms in two or more trials. Five blackheart resistant transgenic lines consistently performed as well as or better than control plants in terms of fruit characteristics and quality. © 2013. Source

Ammonia volatilisation from manure materials within poultry sheds can adversely affect production, and also represents a loss of fertiliser value from the spent litter. This study sought to compare the ability of alum and bentonite to decrease volatilisation losses of ammonia from spent poultry litter. An in-vessel volatilisation trial with air flushing, ammonia collection, and ammonia analysis was conducted over 64 days to evaluate the mitigation potential of these two materials. Water-saturated spent litter was incubated at 25°C in untreated condition (control) or with three treatments: an industry-accepted rate of alum [4% Al2(SO4)3·18H2O by dry mass of litter dry mass; ALUM], air-dry bentonite (127% by dry mass; BENT), or water-saturated bentonite (once again at 127% by dry mass; SATBENT). A high proportion of the nitrogen contained in the untreated spent litter was volatilised (62%). Bentonite additions were superior to alum additions at retaining spent litter ammonia (nitrogen losses: 15%, SATBENT; 34%, BENT; 54%, ALUM). Where production considerations favour comparable high rates of bentonite addition (e.g. where the litter is to be re-formulated as a fertiliser), this clay has potential to decrease ammonia volatilisation either in-shed or in spent litter stockpiles or formulated products, without the associated detrimental effect of alum on phosphorus availability. © CSIRO 2013. Source

Tixier M.-S.,Montpellier SupAgro | Otto J.,DAFF | Kreiter S.,Montpellier SupAgro | Dos Santos V.,Montpellier SupAgro | Beard J.,University of Maryland University College
Experimental and Applied Acarology

Species of the family Phytoseiidae are known as predatory mites, some of them being used in crops to control mite pests, all around the world. Neoseiulus (=Cydnodromus) californicus is among the most commonly used Phytoseiidae species in biological control programs, especially in vineyards, orchards and vegetable fields. This species is distributed world-wide but has never been reported from Australia. On the other hand, specimens morphologically close to N. californicus have been assigned to a species called Neoseiulus wearnei, only reported from Australia. Investigations based on morphological and molecular comparisons were carried out to investigate whether these two taxa are conspecific. Morphological analyses showed no significant difference between specimens identified as N. wearnei and N. californicus. Similarly, genetic distances between these taxa were null, showing that all these specimens belong to the same species. Although it is not yet possible to conclude that all the specimens identified as N. wearnei are N. californicus, we can conclude that N. californicus is present in Australia. The information about the biology of N. californicus can thus now be applied to the Australian population of this species for biological control purposes. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. Source

Sallam N.,BSES Ltd | Braithwaite K.,BSES Ltd | Tree D.,DAFF
35th Annual Conference of the Australian Society of Sugar Cane Technologists 2013, ASSCT 2013

ON 4 JUNE 2012, Oriental rice thrips, Stenchaetothrips biformis (Bagnall), was detected damaging sugarcane seedlings on the BSES Experiment Station at Meringa, Mulgrave region, Queensland. It has since been detected on young cane plants on two other farms in the Mulgrave area. The pest was first suspected to be Oriental sugarcane thrips (Fulmekiola serrata (Kobus)), an exotic pest species. This triggered an Emergency Response course of action with the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Queensland (DAFF) being notified immediately and all cane movement out of Meringa station being halted. Specimens were sent to the Queensland Primary Industries Insect Collection (QDPC), and an accurate identification was made within 48 hours from initial detection. This resulted in the Emergency Response action being terminated as S. biformis is already established in Australia. DNA barcoding was conducted on specimens of S. biformis, as well as specimens of F. serrata that were sourced from colleagues in Reunion and South Africa for future reference. Reasons for what seems to be an expansion of the host range by S. biformis in Australia are unknown, but this incidence highlighted the industry's preparedness to deal with a sudden pest or disease incursion. It also provides the first record of S. biformis attacking sugarcane in Australia. The impact of S. biformis on sugarcane in Australia and its ultimate geographical distribution in canegrowing regions are yet to be determined. Source

Ikram E.H.,University of Queensland | Ikram E.H.,University Technology of MARA | Netzel M.E.,University of Queensland | Fanning K.,DAFF | Stanley R.,University of Tasmania
Acta Horticulturae

The phytochemical composition of the edible fruit and leaf parts of Australian papaya cultivars and the impact of maturity on these functional compounds was investigated. The pulp, peels and leaves of commercially grown Australian papaya cultivars (red and yellow) at 4 different stages of maturity (immature to fully ripened) were analysed for phytochemical content (carotenoids, ascorbic acid and polyphenols by HPLC) and antioxidant capacity (total phenolic content (TPC) and ORAC)). Carotenoid levels in the pulp ranged from 0.28-0.99 mg β-carotene, 0.18-0.42 mg β- cryptoxanthin and 0-1.06 mg lycopene 100 g-1 fresh weight (FW), respectively. Ascorbic acid (AA), TPC and ORAC were up to 61.2 mg 100 g-1 FW, 3.6 mg gallic acid equivalents 100 g-1 FW and 50.9 μM Trolox equivalents g-1 FW, respectively. Midmature and/or fully ripe fruits exhibited the highest ORAC activity as well as AA and carotenoid content. Overall, the highest antioxidant capacity was found in leaves (young and mature) followed by peels and pulp. Polyphenols such as quercetin, gallic acid, kaempherol, chlorogenic acid and coumarin compounds were identified in papaya leaves. These data will assist in assessing the nutritional value of Australian papaya cultivars as well as evaluating the potential benefit of papaya fruit and leaf consumption. Source

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