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Department of Information Engineering (DII)
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Department of Life and Environmental Sciences - DiSVA
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    ABSTRACT: Knowledge of the role of Neotropical montane landscapes in shaping genetic connectivity and local adaptation is essential for understanding the evolutionary processes that have shaped the extraordinary species diversity in these regions. In the present study, we examined the landscape genetics, estimated genetic diversity, and explored genetic relationships with morphological variability and reproductive strategies in seven natural populations of Cattleya liliputana (Orchidaceae). Nuclear microsatellite markers were used for genetic analyses. Spatial Bayesian clustering and population-based analyses revealed significant genetic structuring and high genetic diversity (He = 0.733 ± 0.03). Strong differentiation was found between populations over short spatial scales (FST = 0.138, p < 0.001), reflecting the landscape discontinuity and isolation. Monmonier´s maximum difference algorithm, Bayesian analysis on STRUCTURE and principal component analysis identified one major genetic discontinuity between populations. Divergent genetic groups showed phenotypic divergence in flower traits and reproductive strategies. Increased sexual reproductive effort was associated with rock outcrop type and may be a response to adverse conditions for growth and vegetative reproduction. Here we discuss the effect of restricted gene flow, local adaptation and phenotypic plasticity as drivers of population differentiation in Neotropical montane rock outcrops.
    PLoS ONE 03/2015; 10(3):e0120645. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0120645
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    ABSTRACT: In the present study, we have evaluated the in vitro antibacterial activity of essential oils from Origanum vulgare, Thymus vulgaris, Lavandula angustifolia, Mentha piperita, and Melaleuca alternifolia against 32 erythromycin-resistant [MIC ≥1 µg/mL; inducible, constitutive, and efflux-mediated resistance phenotype; erm(TR), erm(B), and mef(A) genes] and cell-invasive Group A streptococci (GAS) isolated from children with pharyngotonsillitis in Italy. Over the past decades erythromycin resistance in GAS has emerged in several countries; strains combining erythromycin resistance and cell invasiveness may escape β-lactams because of intracellular location and macrolides because of resistance, resulting in difficulty of eradication and recurrent pharyngitis. Thyme and origanum essential oils demonstrated the highest antimicrobial activity with MICs ranging from 256 to 512 µg/mL. The phenolic monoterpene carvacrol [2-Methyl-5-(1-methylethyl) phenol] is a major component of the essential oils of Origanum and Thymus plants. MICs of carvacrol ranged from 64 to 256 µg/mL. In the live/dead assay several dead cells were detected as early as 1 h after incubation with carvacrol at the MIC. In single-step resistance selection studies no resistant mutants were obtained. A synergistic action of carvacrol and erythromycin was detected by the checkerboard assay and calculation of the FIC Index. A 2- to 2048-fold reduction of the erythromycin MIC was documented in checkerboard assays. Synergy (FIC Index ≤0.5) was found in 21/32 strains and was highly significant (p
    Frontiers in Microbiology 03/2015; 6:165. DOI:10.3389/fmicb.2015.00165
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    ABSTRACT: Cycas multipinnata C.J. Chen & S.Y. Yang is a cycad endemic to the Red River drainage region that occurs under evergreen forest on steep limestone slopes in Southwest China and northern Vietnam. It is listed as endangered due to habitat loss and over-collecting for the ornamental plant trade, and only several populations remain. In this study, we assess the genetic variation, population structure, and phylogeography of C. multipinnata populations to help develop strategies for the conservation of the species. 60 individuals from six populations were used for chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) sequencing and 100 individuals from five populations were genotyped using 17 nuclear microsatellites. High genetic differentiation among populations was detected, suggesting that pollen or seed dispersal was restricted within populations. Two main genetic clusters were observed in both the cpDNA and microsatellite loci, corresponding to Yunnan China and northern Vietnam. These clusters indicated low levels of gene flow between the regions since their divergence in the late Pleistocene, which was inferred from both Bayesian and coalescent analysis. In addition, the result of a Bayesian skyline plot based on cpDNA portrayed a long history of constant population size followed by a decline in the last 50,000 years of C. multipinnata that was perhaps affected by the Quaternary glaciations, a finding that was also supported by the Garza-Williamson index calculated from the microsatellite data. The genetic consequences produced by climatic oscillations and anthropogenic disturbances are considered key pressures on C. multipinnata. To establish a conservation management plan, each population of C. multipinnata should be recognized as a Management Unit (MU). In situ and ex situ actions, such as controlling overexploitation and creating a germplasm bank with high genetic diversity, should be urgently implemented to preserve this species.
    PLoS ONE 02/2015; 10(2):e0117719. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0117719


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    p.zza Roma, 22, 60121, Ancona, Italy
  • Head of Institution
    Sauro Longhi
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Top publications last week by downloads

Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the UK 06/2015; DOI:10.1017/S0025315415000235
Nutrition, metabolism, and cardiovascular diseases: NMCD 05/2008; 19(1):39-44. DOI:10.1016/j.numecd.2008.02.004

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