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Caivano A.,Laboratory of Preclinical and Translational Research | la Rocca F.,Laboratory of Preclinical and Translational Research | Simeon V.,Laboratory of Preclinical and Translational Research | Girasole M.,CNR Institute of Structure of Matter | And 9 more authors.
Cellular Oncology | Year: 2016

Purpose: The use of extracellular vesicles (EVs) from body fluids as “liquid biopsies” is emerging as a promising approach for the diagnosis, prognosis and therapeutic monitoring of cancer patients. MicroRNA-155 (miR155), a non-coding transcript of the B-cell integration cluster (BIC) gene, has been reported to play a critical role in the pathogenesis of several types of hematologic malignancies (HMs) in which high miR155 levels have been found. At yet, however, the EV miR155 level and its putative clinical relevance in sera of HM patients have not been reported. Methods: EVs from sera of representative patients with eight different HMs and healthy subjects (controls) were isolated using differential centrifugation. The identity and quality of the EVs were verified by atomic force and transmission electron microscopy. The EV miR155 levels were measured by quantitative RT-PCR. The sensitivity, specificity and area under the curve (AUC) of differences in EV miR155 levels were determined using ROC curve analyses. Results: We found that the EV miR155 levels were significantly higher in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia (WM) cases compared to controls. Conversely, we found that the EV miR155 levels were significantly lower in myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and multiple myeloma (MM) cases. No differences were found in follicular lymphoma (FL), diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) or Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (HL) cases compared to controls. EV miR155 ROC curve analyses revealed significantly different patterns in CLL and AML cases compared to controls, and in AML cases compared to MDS cases (p = 0.004, p = 0.01 and p = 0.04, respectively). In addition, we found that high EV miR155 levels correlated with high white blood cell counts in AML patients. Conclusion: Our data indicate that EV miR155 may serve as an attractive new, non-invasive diagnostic biomarker in human hematologic malignancies. © 2016 International Society for Cellular Oncology


Daane K.M.,University of California at Berkeley | Wang X.-G.,University of California at Berkeley | Biondi A.,University of California at Berkeley | Biondi A.,University of Catania | And 16 more authors.
Journal of Pest Science | Year: 2016

The invasive spotted wing drosophila, Drosophila suzukii Matsumura (Dipt.: Drosophilidae), a native of East Asia, has widely established in North America and Europe, where it is a serious pest of small and stone fruit crops. The lack of effective indigenous parasitoids of D. suzukii in the recently colonized regions prompted the first foreign exploration for co-evolved parasitoids in South Korea during 2013 and 2014. We collected the larval parasitoids Asobara japonica Belokobylskij, A. leveri (Nixon) and A.brevicauda Guerrieri & van Achterberg (Hym.: Braconidae), Ganaspisbrasiliensis (Ihering), Leptopilina japonica japonica Novković & Kimura and L. j. formosana Novković & Kimura (Hym.: Figitidae); and the pupal parasitoids Pachycrepoideus vindemiae (Rondani) (Hym.: Pteromalidae) and Trichopria drosophilae Perkins (Hym.: Diapriidae). From UC Berkeley quarantine records, percentage parasitism ranged from 0 to 17.1 % and varied by geography, season, and collection methods. Asobara japonica was the most common parasitoid species. Higher numbers of parasitoids were reared from field-picked fruit as opposed to traps baited with uninfested fruit. Quarantine bioassays confirmed that A. japonica, G. brasiliensis, L. j. japonica, P. vindemiae, and T. drosophilae developed from D. suzukii. Female individuals of the endoparasitoid, A. japonica, were larger when reared on the larger D. suzukii larvae compared with those reared on the smaller larvae of D. melanogaster Meigen. Larger parasitoid size was associated with longer developmental time. Several of the South Korean parasitoid species have the potential for use in classical biological control and may contribute to the suppression of D. suzukii in the newly invaded regions. © 2016 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg


Pepori A.L.,Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection | Kolarik M.,Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic | Kolarik M.,Charles University | Bettini P.P.,University of Florence | And 2 more authors.
Fungal Biology | Year: 2015

Species of the genus Geosmithia are associated with insect species, mainly bark beetles. On Ulmus spp., the same beetles are also vectors of Ophiostoma ulmi s.l., the agent of Dutch elm disease (DED), a worldwide elm disease. Aim of this paper is to characterise Geosmithia species associated with elms and/or elm beetles in Europe. Seventy-two strains representative of all morphological taxonomic units were used to build a phylogenetic tree based on ITS, β-tubulin and elongation factor 1-α gene regions. On the basis of molecular and morpho-physiological traits, seven taxonomic entities were identified. In addition to the species previously known our results assigned strains previously identified as Geosmithia pallida to two separate taxa: Geosmithia sp. 2 and Geosmithia sp. 5. Two new species, Geosmithia omnicola and Geosmithia ulmacea, are described. Two strains were assigned to the partially described species Geosmithia sp. 20. Geosmithia species living on Ulmus do not discriminate between elm species, but between different environments. The association between Ulmus and Geosmithia is common, stable, and seems to be related to specific vectors. The relationship between Geosmithia and Ophiostoma would deserve further investigation, as these fungi share the same vectors and habitat for a significant part of their life cycles. © 2015 The British Mycological Society.


Rouphael Y.,University of Naples Federico II | de Micco V.,University of Naples Federico II | Arena C.,University of Naples Federico II | Arena C.,Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Applied Phycology | Year: 2016

The presence of NaCl in soil or water is one of the most critical environmental stresses limiting crop productivity worldwide. Seaweed extract (SWE) represents an important category of plant biostimulants able to improve crop tolerance to abiotic stresses, such as salinity. The current research aimed at elucidating the physiological and anatomical effects as well as the changes in mineral composition of greenhouse zucchini squash (Cucurbita pepo L.) treated with Ecklonia maxima SWE. Plants were sprayed every 2 weeks with a solution containing 3 mL L−1 of SWE. Zucchini squash plants were supplied with four nutrient solutions: 1 (non-salt control), 20, 40, or 60 mM NaCl. Increased salinity in the nutrient solution triggered a decrease in marketable yield, shoot biomass, Soil Plant Analysis Development (SPAD) index, net CO2 assimilation rate (ACO2), transpiration rate (E), and leaf macronutrient concentration (P, K, Ca, and Mg), whereas it augmented Na and Cl concentrations in leaf tissue without altering PSII photochemistry. Anatomical changes in leaves, including an increase in lamina, palisade, spongy parenchyma thickness, and intercellular spaces, were recorded under saline conditions. Foliar application of SWE increased yield and shoot biomass by 12.0 and 17.4 %, respectively, as well as fruit dry matter and total soluble solid contents in comparison to untreated plants. This was associated with an improvement in ACO2 (+14 %), chlorophyll content (+8 %), and nutritional status (high K and low Na accumulation) in SWE-treated plants. The size of stomata was influenced by foliar application of SWE, since the smallest cell guard length and width were recorded in the leaves of SWE-treated plants. Finally, the phenolic compounds in both palisade and spongy parenchyma were higher in untreated than in SWE-treated plants. © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht


PubMed | University of Tuscia, University of Florence, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic and Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Fungal biology | Year: 2015

Species of the genus Geosmithia are associated with insect species, mainly bark beetles. On Ulmus spp., the same beetles are also vectors of Ophiostoma ulmi s.l., the agent of Dutch elm disease (DED), a worldwide elm disease. Aim of this paper is to characterise Geosmithia species associated with elms and/or elm beetles in Europe. Seventy-two strains representative of all morphological taxonomic units were used to build a phylogenetic tree based on ITS, -tubulin and elongation factor 1- gene regions. On the basis of molecular and morpho-physiological traits, seven taxonomic entities were identified. In addition to the species previously known our results assigned strains previously identified as Geosmithia pallida to two separate taxa: Geosmithia sp. 2 and Geosmithia sp. 5. Two new species, Geosmithia omnicola and Geosmithia ulmacea, are described. Two strains were assigned to the partially described species Geosmithia sp. 20. Geosmithia species living on Ulmus do not discriminate between elm species, but between different environments. The association between Ulmus and Geosmithia is common, stable, and seems to be related to specific vectors. The relationship between Geosmithia and Ophiostoma would deserve further investigation, as these fungi share the same vectors and habitat for a significant part of their life cycles.


PubMed | National Research Council Italy, il and Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection
Type: | Journal: Frontiers in microbiology | Year: 2016

The fungi Aspergillus niger and A. welwitschiae are morphologically indistinguishable species used for industrial fermentation and for food and beverage production. The fungi also occur widely on food crops. Concerns about their safety have arisen with the discovery that some isolates of both species produce fumonisin (FB) and ochratoxin A (OTA) mycotoxins. Here, we examined FB and OTA production as well as the presence of genes responsible for synthesis of the mycotoxins in a collection of 92 A. niger/A. welwitschiae isolates from multiple crop and geographic origins. The results indicate that (i) isolates of both species differed in ability to produce the mycotoxins; (ii) FB-nonproducing isolates of A. niger had an intact fumonisin biosynthetic gene (fum) cluster; (iii) FB-nonproducing isolates of A. welwitschiae exhibited multiple patterns of fum gene deletion; and (iv) OTA-nonproducing isolates of both species lacked the ochratoxin A biosynthetic gene (ota) cluster. Analysis of genome sequence data revealed a single pattern of ota gene deletion in the two species. Phylogenetic analysis suggest that the simplest explanation for this is that ota cluster deletion occurred in a common ancestor of A. niger and A. welwitschiae, and subsequently both the intact and deleted cluster were retained as alternate alleles during divergence of the ancestor into descendent species. Finally, comparison of results from this and previous studies indicate that a majority of A. niger isolates and a minority of A. welwitschiae isolates can produce FBs, whereas, a minority of isolates of both species produce OTA. The comparison also suggested that the relative abundance of each species and frequency of FB/OTA-producing isolates can vary with crop and/or geographic origin.


Susca A.,National Research Council Italy | Proctor R.H.,U.S. Department of Agriculture | Morelli M.,Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection | Haidukowski M.,National Research Council Italy | And 3 more authors.
Frontiers in Microbiology | Year: 2016

The fungi Aspergillus niger and A. welwitschiae are morphologically indistinguishable species used for industrial fermentation and for food and beverage production. The fungi also occur widely on food crops. Concerns about their safety have arisen with the discovery that some isolates of both species produce fumonisin (FB) and ochratoxin A (OTA) mycotoxins. Here, we examined FB and OTA production as well as the presence of genes responsible for synthesis of the mycotoxins in a collection of 92 A. niger/A. welwitschiae isolates from multiple crop and geographic origins. The results indicate that (i) isolates of both species differed in ability to produce the mycotoxins; (ii) FB-nonproducing isolates of A. niger had an intact fumonisin biosynthetic gene (fum) cluster; (iii) FB-nonproducing isolates of A. welwitschiae exhibited multiple patterns of fum gene deletion; and (iv) OTA-nonproducing isolates of both species lacked the ochratoxin A biosynthetic gene (ota) cluster. Analysis of genome sequence data revealed a single pattern of ota gene deletion in the two species. Phylogenetic analysis suggest that the simplest explanation for this is that ota cluster deletion occurred in a common ancestor of A. niger and A. welwitschiae, and subsequently both the intact and deleted cluster were retained as alternate alleles during divergence of the ancestor into descendent species. Finally, comparison of results from this and previous studies indicate that a majority of A. niger isolates and a minority of A. welwitschiae isolates can produce FBs, whereas, a minority of isolates of both species produce OTA. The comparison also suggested that the relative abundance of each species and frequency of FB/OTA-producing isolates can vary with crop and/or geographic origin. © 2016 Susca, Proctor, Morelli, Haidukowski, Gallo, Logrieco and Moretti.


Pirovano W.,BaseClear B.V. | Miozzi L.,Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection | Boetzer M.,BaseClear B.V. | Pantaleo V.,Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection
Frontiers in Microbiology | Year: 2014

Over the past years deep sequencing experiments have opened novel doors to reconstruct viral populations in a high-throughput and cost-effective manner. Currently a substantial number of studies have been performed which employ Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) techniques to either analyse known viruses by means of a referenceguided approach or to discover novel viruses using a de novo-based strategy. Taking advantage of the well-known Cymbidium ringspot virus we have carried out a comparison of different bioinformatics tools to reconstruct the viral genome based on 21-27 nt short (s)RNA sequencing with the aim to identify the most efficient pipeline. The same approach was applied to a population of plants constituting an ancient variety of Cicer arietinum with red seeds. Among the discovered viruses, we describe the presence of a Tobamovirus referring to the Tomato mottle mosaic virus (NC_022230), which was not yet observed on C. arietinum nor revealed in Europe and a viroid referring to Hop stunt viroid (NC_001351.1) never reported in chickpea. Notably, a reference sequence guided approach appeared the most efficient in such kind of investigation. Instead, the de novo assembly reached a nonappreciable coverage although the most prominent viral species could still be identified. Advantages and limitations of viral metagenomics analysis using sRNAs are discussed. © 2014 Pirovano, Boetzer, Miozzi and Pantaleo.

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