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Laura ARRU

Ricercatore Universitario
Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita sede ex-Agraria


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Pubblicazioni

2022 - Brassica and Sinapis Seeds in Medieval Archaeological Sites: An Example of Multiproxy Analysis for Their Identification and Ethnobotanical Interpretation [Articolo su rivista]
Bosi, Giovanna; De Felice, Simona; Wilkinson, Michael J.; Allainguillaume, Joël; Arru, Laura; Nascimbene, Juri; Buldrini, Fabrizio
abstract

The genus Brassica includes some of the most important vegetable and oil crops worldwide. Many Brassica seeds (which can show diagnostic characters useful for species identification) were recovered from two archaeological sites in northern Italy, dated from between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. We tested the combined use of archaeobotanical keys, ancient DNA barcoding, and references to ancient herbarium specimens to address the issue of diagnostic uncertainty. An unequivocal conventional diagnosis was possible for much of the material recovered, with the samples dominated by five Brassica species and Sinapis. The analysis using ancient DNA was restricted to the seeds with a Brassica-type structure and deployed a variant of multiplexed tandem PCR. The quality of diagnosis strongly depended on the molecular locus used. Nevertheless, many seeds were diagnosed down to species level, in concordance with their morphological identification, using one primer set from the core barcode site (matK). The number of specimens found in the Renaissance herbaria was not high; Brassica nigra, which is of great ethnobotanical importance, was the most common taxon. Thus, the combined use of independent means of species identification is particularly important when studying the early use of closely related crops, such as Brassicaceae.


2022 - Special Issue: "Cyanobacteria, Algae, and Plants; from Biology to Biotechnology" [Altro]
Forti, Luca; Arru, Laura; Bondi, Moreno
abstract

Photosynthetic organisms are milestones in the history of life: in fact, that they made it possible to shape Earth's atmosphere as we know it today and they are at the basis of almost all food chains, therefore, in a certain sense, of life on Earth. From a human point of view, plants have provided material to build shelter and procure medicine, food, and, of course, oxygen. Microalgae and cyanobacteria provide us almost half the oxygen we breathe and absorb a quarter of the CO­2 produced by fossil fuels, and cyanobacteria are responsible for first introducing oxygen into the Earth’s anoxygenic atmosphere more than three billion years ago. Algae have often been associated with plants and classified accordingly, as they share some peculiar traits, and blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, have been considered close to microalgae, since they derive energy from sunlight, like algae and plants through photosynthesis. However, even if they possess the same chlorophyll pigment and produce carbon dioxide, they do not have a nuclear membrane and, therefore, they are prokaryotes. Cyanobacteria, microalgae, and plants are beneficial and promising organisms for the sustainable production of food, feed, materials, chemicals, and fuels. To reach sustainability, considerable attention must be given to both strains and cultivars and available and new tools. From biology to biotechnology, research today should aim at eradicating hunger and illness in the world and at building a greener future. This Special Issue of Plants is focused on the most up-to-date research on these topics. In this Special Issue, we would like to present original research articles and reviews related but not limited to: - knowledge of and biotechnological applications for plant production, including specific aspects of sustainable agriculture and potential benefits to the environment and various other dimensions of human life - bio-sequestration of CO2 - remediation of polluted waters/soils - microalgal and cyanobacterial biomass and applications


2021 - A tuning point in plant acoustics investigation [Articolo su rivista]
Allievi, Sara; Arru, Laura; Forti, Luca
abstract

In a very recent book called Sensory Biology of Plants, published by renowned publisher Springer Nature, the authors stated that the scientific literature gathered so far regarding knowledge around the field of Plant Acoustics allows us to divert the focus from the question "whether plants perceive sound" toward the questions "how and why they are doing it" Some phenomena are well known: roots perceive the sound of flowing water and display a sound-mediated growth toward the water source, while the buzz pollination process allows plants to minimize the pollen lost and maximize which is collected by true pollinators. But plants are far more perceptive and responsive to their environment than we generally consider them to be, and they are communicating far more information than we realize if we only took all their signals (VOCs, sound, exudates, etc.) into a greater picture. Could Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) be involved in mediating more responses than we imagine? VOC synthesis and release is known to be elicited also by electrical signals caused by mechanical stimuli, touching and wounding being among these, serving as info-chemicals in the communication between plants ("eavesdropping"), and within the organs of the same plant, in order for it to get synchronized with its surroundings. This paper is an overview of the discoveries around plant perception with a focus on the link between mechanical stimuli, as sound vibrations are, and changes in plant physiology leading to VOC emission.


2021 - Biological effect of different spinach extracts in comparison with the individual components of the phytocomplex [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, L.; Mussi, F.; Forti, L.; Buschini, A.
abstract

The Mediterranean-style diet is rich in fruit and vegetables and has a great impact on the prevention of major chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular diseases and cancer. In this work we investigated the ability of spinach extracts obtained by different extraction methods and of the single main components of the phytocomplex, alone or mixed, to modulate proliferation, antioxidant defense, and genotoxicity of HT29 human colorectal cells. Spinach extracts show dose-dependent activity, increasing the level of intracellular endogenous reactive oxygen species (ROS) when tested at higher doses. In the presence of oxidative stress, the activity is related to the oxidizing agent involved (H2O2 or menadione) and by the extraction method. The single components of the phytocomplex, alone or mixed, do not alter the intracellular endogenous level of ROS but again, in the presence of an oxidative insult, the modulation of antioxidant defense depends on the oxidizing agent used. The application of the phytocomplex extracts seem to be more effective than the application of the single phytocomplex components.


2021 - Elicitation of phenylpropanoids in maqui (Aristotelia chilensis [Mol.] Stuntz) plants micropropagated in photomixotrophic temporary immersion bioreactors (TIBs) [Articolo su rivista]
Trentini, G. E.; Rojas, M.; Gajardo, D.; Alburquenque, D; Villagra, E; Gómez, A; Arru, L; Arencibia, A
abstract

A biotechnological system for the production of plants biomass and phenylpropanoids of maqui was developed in photomixotrophic TIBs. The in vitro maqui multiplication was evaluated using combinations of TDZ and BAP in TIBs 1L capacity. Treatment of MS basal supplemented with TDZ 1 mg/L shows the best results for the variables fresh weight and multiplication rate. Photomixotrophic conditions were standardized in media with 3%, 2%, 1%, 0% sucrose at a light intensity of 100 µM m−2 s−1. The treatments reduced in sucrose (1 and 2%) and air supplemented with 0.4 MPa CO2 do not differ significantly in biomass production (fresh weight per cluster of plants) compared to the control treatment with sucrose 3% and standard air. Treatment with ABA (1 m/l) induced the production and accumulation of phenylpropanoids metabolites in maqui cultures bioreactors. Phenylpropanoids in in vitro biomass of maqui and culture medium from TIBs were determined in parallel with control samples from wild plants and mature fruits. After the third day of analysis, not significant differences in polyphenols and anthocyanin contents were verified between the treatments of maqui in TIBs + ABA and controls. The non-significant differences in the contents of polyphenols and anthocyanin were maintained until the 15 days of analysis. The antioxidant capacity comparing samples of maqui in bioreactors and wild plants showed no significant differences by the ORAC test from day 5 to day 15 of the study. Results originate an optimized methodology that was scale to SETIS™ bioreactors of 5L capacity.


2021 - Le Creme delle Streghe [Monografia/Trattato scientifico]
Arru, L; Forti, L; Trentini, Ge
abstract

Il saggio (ri)scopre erbe e piante medicinali rintracciate nei manoscritti medievali come antichi rimedi tramandati per generazioni soprattutto dalle donne. Principali custodi di un incredibile patrimonio curativo, terapico e farmacologico, fondato su conoscenze naturali e senza basi scientifiche, furono avversate e perseguitate durante la famigerata "caccia alle streghe" proprio per questo. Il complesso lavoro di ricerca sui manoscritti ha permesso di scovare una quantità enorme di rimedi domestici, medici e veterinari di una modernità impressionante. Per esempio, si conoscevano già l'efficacia della bava di lumaca o delle lacrime di vite, un metodo per lo sbiancamento dei denti ed unguenti per le ustioni. Le ricette sono state tradotte, decifrate e studiate dagli autori, che rivedendo e modificando la composizione, gli ingredienti ed il procedimento botanico-farmaceutico, hanno dato nuova vita a rimedi naturali che conservano la forza di secoli di sapienza.


2021 - Microalgae potential in the capture of CO2 emission [Articolo su rivista]
Frongia, F.; Arru, L.; Cramarossa, M. R.; Forti, L.
abstract

In a perspective projected to reduce the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases, in which carbon dioxide is the master, the use of microalgae is an effective and decisive response. The review describes the bio circularity of the process of abatement of carbon dioxide through biofixation in algal biomass, highlighting the potential of its reuse in the production of high value-added products.


2021 - Potential of Citrullus colocynthis L. Schrad. Immature Seed Extracts as Food Preservative against a Fungal Mycotoxigenic Contaminant [Articolo su rivista]
Mussi, Francesca; Montalbano, Serena; Marzouk, Belsem; Arru, Laura; Refifa, Meher; Marzouk, Zohra; Kraiem, Jamil; Degola, Francesca; Buschini, Annamaria
abstract

'e world of plant extracts and natural compounds have long been regarded as a promise land for the individuation of healthyalternatives to chemical preservatives, against microbial contamination, in food and feed commodities. A plethora of aromatic andmedicinal plant species have been studied from decades to explore their antimicrobial and antioxidant properties, in order to bothvalidate their ethnobotanical use for healing microbial illnesses and assess their suitability as food preservation agents. In fact, afterterrestrialization and during the following evolutionary pathway, plants had to develop chemical compounds—constitutive and/or induced—for defence against specific pathogens, therefore becoming a potential source of new natural products usable withantimicrobial purposes. Aside from the most common contaminants that could occur in foodstuff, mycotoxigenic fungal speciesrepresent a big concern, mainly in cereals and derived products: aflatoxins in particular are the most dreaded among such toxicand cancerogenic secondary metabolites, and the control of the main producerAspergillus flavusis currently one of the mostpursued goals in the field of food safety. As aromatic and medicinal plants have a long history of use in the Mediterranean basin forboth food preservation and pest control in crops, the exploitation of native species for the control of mycotoxigenic phyto-pathogens is almost rationale. 'e present work provides novel insights into the possible use ofC. colocynthisseed organic extractsas antimycotoxigenic additives, demonstrating, for some of them, a feasible application as crop and food protectants with specificregard to aflatoxin contamination. Additionally, the evaluation of their cytotoxic potential and nitric oxide production on humancell lines has been reported for the first time


2021 - Special Issue: Natural Alternative Antimicrobial Compounds to Improve Food Safety and Quality [Altro]
Bondi, M; Arru, Laura; DE NIEDERHAUSERN, Simona; Andrea, Laukova; Chrissanthy, Papadopoulou
abstract

The recent changes in food production and processing practices, the ever-changing eating habits of consumers, and the globalization of the food market are important factors affecting the safety and quality of foods. According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it has recently been reported that "food-borne infections" cause about 76 million cases of illness, 325,000 hospitalizations, and as many as 5,000 deaths per year in the U.S. (likely underestimated). The presence of food-borne pathogens in raw materials has been widely documented. The risks associated with the consumption of minimally processed ready-to-eat (RTE) foods, lightly preserved products, and refrigerated or frozen products are related to the possible growth of these microorganisms during food storage at refrigeration temperatures. For example, the trend towards the consumption of RTE foods increased the incidence of diseases caused by psychrotrophic bacteria such as Listeria monocytogenes, an important pathogen that primarily affects immunocompromised individuals and pregnant women. Another related topic is microbial food spoilage. It is estimated that as much as 25% of all produced food is lost after harvest and a significant part is of poor quality due to microbial activity. The growth of spoilage microbiota in foods (i.e. Pseudomonas spp., Flavobacterium spp., Bacillus spp., coliforms, etc.) is generally not harmful; however, it has a negative impact on shelf-life, organoleptic characteristics, and overall quality of the finished products, thus affecting consumer choices and resulting in significant commercial losses. If bacterial growth could be delayed or inhibited, it would be possible to obtain a great advantage regards public health and food product shelf-life. For this purpose, chemical preservatives are still employed, but because there are many concerns about them, consumers seem to prefer the use of natural products and are looking for foods that appear "more green". The current trend in food processing is therefore focusing on natural antimicrobial compounds (from microorganisms, plants, etc.). Another possibility is related to the development of "active food packaging", meaning to incorporate compounds with antibacterial activity in PVOH-based coatings. This approach can be extended to directly include bacteriocin-producing bacteria endowed with probiotic activity and is therefore full of perspectives for future applications in the food and health industry. This Special Issue will address cutting-edge research and review articles related to recent developments on the application of alternative naturally produced antimicrobials throughout the whole chain of the food industry to improve the quality and safety of food. Potential topics include but are not limited to the following: Natural alternative preservatives/antimicrobials of plant origin e.g. Essential oils, plant derived compounds (polyphenols, tannins, flavonoids, thymol, carvacrol, phenolics, quinones, saponins, terpenoids etc), plant by-products (seeds, peels, kernels, pulps, etc) Natural preservatives/antimicrobials from algae, fungi and edible mushrooms Natural alternative preservatives/antimicrobials of animal origin e.g. lysozyme, lactoferrin, lactoperoxidase, casein, lipids, protamines, chitozan Natural alternative preservatives and antimicrobials from microorganisms, e.g. acidophilin, bacteriocins, lactocin, natamycin, nisins, reutirin, bacteriophages Active food packaging added with live probiotic bacteria endowed with antimicrobial effect, e.g. Enterococcus spp., Lactobacillus spp., Bifidobacterium spp., Bacillus spp., etc


2020 - Sound perception and its effects in plants and algae [Articolo su rivista]
Frongia, F.; Forti, L.; Arru, L.
abstract

Life evolved in an acoustic world. Sound is perceived in different ways by the species that inhabit the Planet. Among organisms, also some algal species seem to respond to sound stimuli with increased cell growth and productivity. The purpose of this Short Communication is to provide an overview of the current literature about various organisms and sound, with particular attention to algal organisms, which, when subjected to sound applications, can change their metabolism accordingly.


2020 - Therapeutical effects of healing gardens on children and adolescents with special educational needs [Altro]
Trentini, G. E.; Arru, L.; Artoni, V.
abstract


2019 - Apparato e metodo per depurare un prodotto gassoso derivante dalla gassificazione di biomassa, brevetto n. 102017000082284 [Brevetto]
Allesina, Giulio; Pedrazzi, Simone; ALTUNOZ HATIPOGLU, Meltem; Arru, Laura; Antonelli, Andrea; Montevecchi, Giuseppe; Masino, Francesca; Tartarini, Paolo
abstract

L’invenzione riguarda un apparato e un metodo per depurare, in particolare filtrare, un prodotto gassoso derivante dalla gassificazione di una biomassa, ad esempio una biomassa legnosa.


2019 - Effects of innovative biofertilizers on yield of processing tomato cultivated in organic cropping systems in northern Italy [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Ronga, D.; Caradonia, F.; Setti, L.; Hagassou, D.; Giaretta Azevedo, C. V.; Milc, J.; Pedrazzi, S.; Allesina, G.; Arru, L.; Francia, E.
abstract

Nowadays agriculture needs to increase crop sustainability and the organic cropping system has emerged as an interesting alternative approach with respect to the conventional one. On the other hand, the current unfavorable yield gap between organic and conventional systems reduces the organic system’s value. Processing tomato is a globally important horticultural crop and used as crop model. The objective of this study was to investigate different biofertilizers that could improve the yield and quality of processing tomato in organic cropping system. An experiment was conducted in Po Valley, northern Italy, during spring-summer 2017. The cultivar used was ‘Barone Rosso’ blocky fruit genotype, using 2.8 plants m-2, in randomized complete block design with seven biofertilizer treatments (pelleted digestate, granular biofertilizer, biochar, compost tea as foliar spray biostimulant, SiO2 as foliar spray biostimulant, compost tea + SiO2 as foliar spray biostimulant, zero biofertilizer as a control) and three replications. Agronomical and physiological parameters were recorded during the crop cycle. Results showed that tomato grown with biochar recorded the maximum commercial yield (136 t ha-1), followed by pelleted digestate (117 t ha-1) and compost tea + SiO2 as foliar spray biostimulant (113 t ha-1) while the minimum production (71 t ha-1) was recorded in untreated plots. On average, the results revealed that biochar, pelleted digestate and compost tea + SiO2 as foliar spray biostimulant, increased the vegetative vigor of plant (+10%), the number of flowers (+13%) and fruits (+41%), the average weight of fruits (+20%), the total biomass production (+48%), the harvest index (+15%) and the Brix t ha-1 (+49%), with respect to the control. Considering the overall performance, innovative biofertilizers could be promising to improve yield and quality of processing tomato cultivated in organic cropping systems, reducing the yield gap with conventional one.


2019 - Oxygen Availability during Growth Modulates the Phytochemical Profile and the Chemo-Protective Properties of Spinach Juice [Articolo su rivista]
Milano, Francesco; Mussi, F; Fornaciari, S; Altunoz, M; Forti, L; Arru, L; Buschini, A
abstract

Fruits and vegetables are a good source of potentially biologically active compounds. Their regular consumption in the human diet can help reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and cancer. Plants produce additional chemical substances when subject to abiotic stress or infected by microorganisms. The phytochemical profile of spinach leaves (Spinacia oleracea L.), which is a vegetable with widely recognized health-promoting activity, has been affected by applying root hypoxic and re-oxygenation stress during plant growth. Leaf juice at different sampling times has been subject to liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (LCMSn) analysis and tested on the human colorectal adenocarcinoma cell line HT29 by using the Comet assay. The cells were previously treated with H2O2 to simulate the presence of an oxidative stress (as in colon cancer condition) and the leaf juice application resulted in a significant antioxidant and protective in vitro effect. The duration of the hypoxic/re-oxygenation stress imposed on the plant reflects the antioxidant leaf juice content. After hypoxic stress (24 hours) and reoxygenation (2 hours), we show a decrease (50%) of the relative abundance of the principal identified antioxidant molecules but a higher antioxidant activity of the spinach juice on HT29 cells (20%). Data shows a complex relation between plant growing conditions and the modulation of secondary metabolites content in leaf juice that results in different chemo-protective activities in colon cancer cells.


2019 - Passive system for internal surface cleaning and homogenization in the air-lift vertical column photobioreactors [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Morselli, N.; Altunoz, M.; Puglia, M.; Arru, L.; Tartarini, P.
abstract

the mixing and surface cleaning performances of an air-water diffuser is tested in a 70 L air-lift bubble column photobioreactor in which single-celled Cyanobacteria Synechocystis sp. fed by sewage sludge waste is cultivated. Results have shown that a water velocity of 0.2 ms-1 in the non-aerated bottom part of the PBR and 0.06 ms-1 in the aerated zone are sufficient to prevent sludge deposition and biofouling on the surfaces. Moreover, water recirculation is observed to have an important role on the sludge mixing and algal homogenization of the photobioreactor. A computational model is then created and tuned using experimental data in order to predict the water and air velocity map in the whole domain.


2018 - Archaeobotany and ancient biomolecules from the Early and Middle Holocene wild cereals in central Sahara [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Rita; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Arru, Laura; di Lernia, Savino
abstract

An archaeobotanical and biomolecular research has been carried out on wild cereals found at Takarkori, a rockshelter located in the Tadrart Acacus massif (central Sahara, SW Libya), UNESCO area since 1985 (e.g., di Lernia and Zampetti 2008). The site has been excavated by the Italian-Libyan Archaeological Mission (Sapienza University of Rome) from 2003 to 2006. Chronology ranges from c. 10,200 to c. 4600 cal BP. Besides the archaeological evidence, the particular depositional setting reveals a remarkable state of preservation of the organic material (Biagetti and di Lernia 2013). In this context, dried macroremains of wild cereals have been investigated by the classical archaeobotanical approach complemented with ancient DNA (aDNA) analysis, in order to investigate the plant resources which were available for huntergatherer first and then pastoral groups who occupied the site. ... The analyses confirm that Early and Middle Holocene biomolecules of Saharan wild cereals have survived until today. The set of data obtained from this research allowed a better understanding of both the palaeo-environmental context, made by climate and human actions, and the past human behaviour in exploiting wild cereals. These wild cereals were adapted to the changing environments and their presence changed during the different cultural and environmental phases at Takarkori. The archaeobotanical study, including systematic analyses of the plant accumulations, distribution and contexts, allowed to observe the gathering and cultivation of wild cereals in central Sahara (Mercuri et al. 2018).


2018 - Panicum spikelets from the Early Holocene Takarkori rockshelter (SW Libya): Archaeo-molecular and -botanical investigations [Articolo su rivista]
Fornaciari, Rita; Fornaciari, Silvia; Francia, Enrico; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Arru, Laura
abstract

This paper deals with the extraction, amplification and sequencing of ancient DNA (aDNA) from spikelets of wild cereals dated at ca. 9000 cal yr BP, representing the most ancient plants with preserved genetic material from the Sahara desert. The sub-fossil records were collected from the archaeological excavation carried out at Takarkori, an archaeological site located in south-western Libya. Morphological and genetic analyses were made on 100 well preserved dried spikelets. Ten DNA extraction protocols were performed to evaluate nucleic acid recovery in terms of DNA yield, purity and amplification success of the chloroplast barcode region matK. The extraction protocol that returned the most suitable DNA to be amplified is the Kistler and Shapiro (2011: J Archaeol Sci 38: 3549-3554) modified protocol. In our study, the results from matK amplification suggested that four specimens are the most appropriate number of spikelets for these analyses. DNA was then used for PCR amplifications of four chloroplast barcode genes: rbcL, matK, trnH-psbA and trnL. A phylogenetic analysis shows the strict relation between the archaeological specimens and modern Panicoideae, supporting the morphological identification. The results indicate that spikelets have a close relation to Panicum laetum Kunth, a wild cereal still collected in tropical Africa.


2018 - The Role of Morphometry to Delineate Changes in the Spikelet Shape of Wild Cereals: The Case Study of Takarkori (Holocene, Central Sahara, SW Libya) [Capitolo/Saggio]
Fornaciari, Rita; Arru, Laura; Terenziani, Rita; Mercuri, Anna Maria
abstract

morphometrical study of hundreds of spikelets recovered from archaeological deposits of Takarkori (SW Libya) provides data on the presence and size variations of wild cereals gathered by hunter-gatherers in the central Sahara during the Early and Middle Holocene (c. 10,200–c. 4600 cal yr BP). Spikelets of Panicum laetum, Echinochloa colona and Sorghum bicolor subsp. verticilliflorum, found in 18 seed/fruit concentrations, are measured using image analysis techniques. These data demonstrate that the archaeobotanical specimens have a similar typology, maturity stage and are of a uniform size, suggesting that they were selected by the human groups living in the area. Indeed, the spikelets of two samples recovered from sediments excavated elsewhere on the site compared to those from the seed concentrations, show a smaller size and greater variation in maturation status. Results are compared to metrical data obtained from modern species.


2017 - ...dietro un filo d'erba... [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

La neurobiologia vegetale è la nuova e dibattuta disciplina scientifica che studia come le piante superiori siano capaci di ricevere segnali dall'ambiente circostante, rielaborare le informazioni ottenute e calcolare le soluzioni adatte alla loro sopravvivenza.


2017 - Combined Effects of LED Lights and chicken manure on Neochloris oleoabundans Growth [Articolo su rivista]
ALTUNOZ HATIPOGLU, Meltem; Pirrotta, Onofrio; Forti, Luca; Allesina, Giulio; Pedrazzi, Simone; Obali, Olcay; Tartarini, Paolo; Arru, Laura
abstract

In this study a photobioreactor prototype is presented for the culture growth of microalgae model organism Neochloris oleoabundans by using chicken manure waste as feedstock along with the optimum combination of led light wavelengths and light intensity. Particularly interesting results are observed on the strains fed by chicken manure medium under the proper combination of red and blue LED light illumination, the microalgal growth resulted comparable with the strains fed by the costly commercial microalgal growth medium (BG 11 medium). Cell concentration, optical density, growth rate, cell size, total lipid and photosynthetic pigment content have been monitored during a time-course experiment. The data suggest that there are difficulties due to white light diffusion into the dark chicken medium, which leads to a generally lower intensity scattered along all wavelengths; blue or combined red and blue lights resulted in a higher irradiation density, affecting microalgae cell growth.


2017 - Effects of Xylotrechus arvicola (Olivier, 1795) infestation on some parameters of grapevine production in Spain [Articolo su rivista]
Ocete, R.; Ocete, C. A.; Rubio-Casal, A. E.; López, M. A.; Soria, F. J.; Maistrello, L.; Arru, L.; Armendariz, I.
abstract

The wood borer Xylotrechus arvicola has recently become a pest of vineyards in most of the productive winegrowing areas of Spain. The activity of its larvae has important consequences on grapevine production. Different production parameters such as bunch length and weight, number of flowers, wood weight, leaf pigments and Baumé degree of the must were registered in Viura and Tempranillo varieties in La Rioja, separating X. arvicola affected and not affected branches on the individual plants. All the considered parameters were influenced by the wood borer activity, except the Baumé degree. Important differences detected in some of the parameters, indicate that Viura cultivar is more damaged than Tempranillo, despite the fact that the last one shows a higher attack by the borer in the field. Considering the increasing infestation by X. arvicola in Spanish grape production areas, our findings allowed to understand the borer action on the plants and indicated that Tempranillo has a higher tolerance to the attack of this borer, with possible consequences in orienting the choices of varieties for winemaking.


2017 - Fiumi in salute - Monitoraggio ambientale dei corsi d'acqua montanara [Altro]
Bonisoli, L; Arru, Laura
abstract

Il progetto "Fiumi in salute - monitoraggio ambientale nell'alto Appennino", finanziato dal Dipartimento delle Pari Opportunità della Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri nell'ambito del bando "In estate si imparano le STEM", presentato in collaborazione con l’Istituto Comprensivo M.E. Lepido di Reggio Emilia, Prot. n. 1043/A15c, 02/03/2017 , prevede un breve corso estivo di educazione ambientale per un gruppo di studenti di scuola media, focalizzato sull'ecologia dei fiumi dell'alto Appennino e sulle tecniche di monitoraggio della qualità dell'ambiente fluviale. Nell'ambito del corso è prevista un'uscita di due giorni a S.Maria del Taro (PR) dove gli studenti svolgeranno varie attività di campagna e laboratoriali, sotto la guida di esperti di discipline diverse. Le attività programmate abbracciano geologia, zoologia, ecologia e fisiologia vegetale, per fornire agli studenti una panoramica completa dell’ambiente nelle sue componenti biotiche e abiotiche. Inoltre sono previste sia attività di campagna che di stampo laboratoriale, per mostrare agli studenti che l'indagine scientifica può essere svolta in molti modi diversi. In questo contesto multidisciplinare si inseriscono le attività di laboratorio di fisiologia vegetale, necessarie per completare la panoramica di tecniche e ambiti dell'indagine scientifica.


2017 - Morphology and discrimination features of pollen from Italian olive cultivars (Olea europaea L.) [Articolo su rivista]
Messora, Rita; Florenzano, Assunta; Torri, Paola; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Muzzalupo, Innocenzo; Arru, Laura
abstract

Pollen morphology of 14 cultivars of Olea europaea subsp. europaea var. europaea was analysed in order to discriminate main pollen types. The cultivars were selected from the most spread and early flowering crops grown in Italy. Morphometric parameters were observed on acetolysed pollen by means of light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Polar axis (P), equatorial diameter (E), P/E ratio, maximum distance between colpi in mesocolpium, distance between the apices of two colpi, exine thickness, maximum length of lumina in mesocolpium and in apocolpium, and exine reticulum thickness in mesocolpium have been measured. According to P and E, the 14 olive cultivars of this study can be divided into the three groups of small (P: 21.75 µm, E: 22.55 µm; ‘Manna’ and ‘Tonda di Cagliari’), large (P: 25.1 µm, E: 26.1 µm; ‘Pescarese’ and ‘Rotondella di Sanza’) and medium size (P: 23.49 µm, E: 24.54 µm, ‘Carolea’, ‘Grossa di Cassano’, ‘Giarraffa’, ‘Nocellara messinese’, ‘Nocellara del Belice’, ‘Santagatese’, ‘Intosso’, ‘Maiatica di Ferrandina’, ‘Nostrale di Fiano Romano’, ‘Santa Caterina’). Maximum length of lumina and exine thickness are useful parameters for further distinction of olive pollen groups, since these parameters are able to provide a specific pollen profile for each cultivar.


2017 - PROVE DI ADATTAMENTO DELLA CANAPA (CANNABIS SATIVA L.) NELL'APPENNINO DELL’EMILIA CENTRALE [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Ronga, Domenico; Caradonia, Federica; Setti, Leonardo; Hagassou, Djangsou; Arru, Laura; Forti, Luca; Endrighi, Emiro; Bazzani, Grassi G.; Francia, Enrico
abstract

La canapa (Cannabis sativa L.) è una pianta utilizzata per molteplici usi. In Europa, tra il XVI e il XVII secolo, era una delle colture principali impiegate per la produzione di fibre tessili. Già a partire da fine ‘800 la mancata industrializzazione, il proibizionismo e la disponibilità di nuove fibre più competitive hanno portato al declino della canapicoltura. Negli ultimi anni però, caratteristiche positive quali il basso impatto ambientale, la capacità di ridurre il consumo dei suoli, le basse esigenze colturali, nonché il suo possibile uso in diversi settori (alimentare, erboristico, della bioedilizia, ecc.) hanno portato a riconsiderare la sua coltivazione. La canapa, infatti, è una coltura dinamica che si adatta a diverse condizioni agro-ambientali e che non ha grandi esigenze idriche, nutritive e fitosanitarie. Pertanto, potrebbe essere coltivata con buone rese anche in ambienti marginali come ad esempio quelli dell’Appennino emiliano. Lo scopo di questo studio è stato quello di valutare l’adattamento di diverse cultivar moderne di canapa in un’azienda sperimentale biologica, situata nell’Appennino dell’Emilia centrale, per la produzione di infiorescenze da destinare all’estrazione di oli essenziali. La prova è stata effettuata nel 2016 presso l’azienda dell’Istituto “Lazzaro Spallanzani”, Montombraro (Modena). Tre diverse cultivar, Uso 31, Futura 75 e Fedora 17, sono state seminate nella seconda decade di giugno secondo uno schema sperimentale a blocchi completamente randomizzati. Durante la prova non sono stati utilizzati fertilizzanti e prodotti fitosanitari ed è stata effettuata solo un’irrigazione di soccorso all’emergenza. Sono stati poi rilevati i seguenti parametri: emergenza piante, altezza della pianta, diametro colletto, biomassa aerea fresca (di infiorescenze, fusti e foglie), indice relativo al contenuto in clorofilla mediante SPAD-502. Dai rilievi effettuati è emerso che tutte e 3 le cultivar si sono adattate bene alle condizioni di coltivazione ma la cultivar Futura 75 è quella che si è adattata meglio all’ambiente di coltivazione ed ha mostrato una produzione di biomassa fresca di infiorescenze superiore alle altre 2 cultivar. Sono in corso prove di estrazione degli oli essenziali dai campioni di biomassa raccolti mediante distillatore. La possibilità di poter coltivare la canapa potrebbe da un lato migliorare il reddito dell’agricoltore e dall’altro avere effetti positivi sull’agro-ecosistema permettendo così il rilancio e la valorizzazione delle aree dell’Appennino emiliano.


2017 - Preliminary Analyses on an Algae-Based Water Scrubber for Syngas Cleaning [Articolo su rivista]
Allesina, G; Pedrazzi, S; Altunoz, M; Morselli, N; Puglia, M; Allegretti, F; Leonardi, C; Giorgini, L; Arru, L; Tartarini, P
abstract

Common issues of the gasification systems relate to filtering apparatus. Dry filtering processes are simple and reliable. However, the filtering material defines the maximum and minimum temperature at which the filter can operate properly. In addition, dry filtration is not effective on light tar compounds (i.e. benzene and toluene) or ammonia compounds. On the other hand, despite being very efficient, wet filters drop the gas temperature below the line of condensation of tar, ammonia and steam. The resulting condensate is normally disposed at a high cost on account of the high amount of hydrocarbons it contains. This work investigates the effects of a specific micro-algae growth on the waste-water from a syngas water scrubber. The results demonstrated the capability of the algal growth in the tar-contaminated water in which a certain amount of contaminants have been dissolved. Quantitative analyses of the compounds outlined the effect of algal growth on the reduction of several chemical species derived from the syngas filtration.


2017 - SUSTAINABILITY OF AGRICULTURAL ENVIRONMENT: CONTRIBUTIONS OF PLANT GENETICS AND PHYSIOLOGY [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Buti, Matteo; Leonarduzzi, Cristina; Ronga, Domenico; Milc, Justyna Anna; Beretta, Massimiliano; Malatrasi, M; Setti, Leonardo; Hagassou, Djangsou; Arru, Laura; Francia, Enrico
abstract

Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) is one of the most widely cultivated vegetable crops, and its production for both processing and fresh market is widespread in the Mediterranean area, especially in Italy. With 26,500 ha cultivated with processing tomato, Emilia-Romagna region is the Italian leader in production. Low temperature stress and blossom-end rot (BER) physiopathy are two of the major limiting factors for the local processing tomato production, while length of growth cycle strongly influences the fructification timeframe, an essential trait for transformation industry. Understanding the molecular basis of chilling tolerance, BER resistance and crop earliness would be crucial to identify the correlated molecular markers and to characterize their allelic variants: this would allow developing new processing tomato cultivars carrying these desirable traits. A thorough literature survey allowed us to identify candidate genes and QTLs linked to the three mentioned traits. The position of candidate genes was directly inferred from the annotated genome (version SL2.50), while QT loci were physically positioned using the sequences of associated flanking and peak markers. This allowed the detection of genomic regions putatively associated with the 3 selected traits, and SolCAP database was searched to identify a set of SNPs located within or nearby the genomic regions of interest. In total 1,564 and 312 SNPs putatively correlated to chilling and BER tolerance, respectively, while identification of SNPs linked to crop cycle length is still in progress. A processing tomato collection of 124 accessions (both lines and hybrids) with a wide phenotypic range for the three traits was assembled and grown in filed and in controlled conditions during 2017. Phenotyping and genotyping using SNPs putatively associated with the studied traits of these accessions are currently in progress, aiming at the identification of a set of locus specific SNPs (and respective allelic variants) that could be used for assisted selection in breeding programs. European ERDF fund supported this research as a part of Emilia Romagna regional project GENBACCA.


2017 - The representativeness of Olea pollen from olive groves and the Late Holocene landscape reconstruction in central Mediterranean [Articolo su rivista]
Fornaciari, R; Florenzano, A; Mercuri, Am; Rinaldi, R; Rattighieri, E; Messora, R; Arru, L
abstract

Modern pollen spectra are an invaluable reference tool for paleoenvironmental and cultural landscape reconstructions, but the importance of knowing the pollen rain released from orchards remains underexplored. In particular, the role of cultivated trees is in past and current agrarian landscapes has not been fully investigated. Here, we present a pollen analysis of 70 surface soil samples taken from 12 olive groves in Basilicata and Tuscany, two regions of Italy that exemplify this cultivation in the Mediterranean basin. This study was carried out to assess the representativeness of Olea pollen in modern cultivations. Although many variables can influence the amount of pollen observed in soils, it was clear that most of the pollen was deposited below the trees in the olive groves. A rapid decline in the olive pollen percentages (c. 85% on average) was found when comparing samples taken from IN vs. OUT of each grove. The mean percentages of Olea pollen obtained from the archaeological sites close to the studied orchards suggest that olive groves were established far from the Roman farmhouses of Tuscany. Further south, in the core of the Mediterranean basin, the cultivation of Olea trees was likely situated approximately 500–1000 m from the rural sites in Basilicata, and dated from the Hellenistic to the Medieval period.


2016 - Biotechnological Approaches to Produce Phenylpropanoids in Controlled Conditions [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Arencibia, Ad; Villagra, E; Hernández, N; Gómez, A; Arru, Laura
abstract

.Plants synthesize an array of natural products based on the phenylpropane skeleton which have multiple functions, highlighting their antioxidant properties adding values to the nutraceutical, pharmaceutical and cosmetology industries, between others. This paper take attention to four biotechnology advances towards make efficient the production of these secondary metabolites. I.- Design and development of efficient methodologies for plant cultures in Temporary Immersion Bioreactors (TIBs); II.- Management of the in vitro photosynthesis to reach photomixotrophic plant cultures; III.- Elicitation of the phenylpropanoids pathway during in vitro cultures; IV.- Polyploidy induction as a biotechnological tool for plant genetic improvement. The model species have been commercial genotypes of blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum), raspberries (Rubus idaeus) and maqui (Aristotelia chilensis) and, the phenylpropanoids metabolites have been determined indistinctively in biomass and culture medium from both in vitro and ex vitro plantlets. Perspectives in the industrialization of the phenylpropanoids production as a circular bioeconomic process are discussed


2016 - Inhibitory Activity of Leaves Extracts of Citrullus colocynthis Schrad. on HT29 Human Colon Cancer Cells [Articolo su rivista]
Marzouk, B; Mussi, F; Jamali, Ca; Galati, S; Bekkouche, K; Aouni, M; Arru, Laura; Marzouk, Z; Buschini, A.
abstract

Aims: Citrullus colocynthis is a plant endemic in Asia, Africa and in the Mediterranean basin. It is used in folk medicine against infections, inflammations and cardiovascular and immune-related diseases. There are further evidences of the use of Citrullus colocynthis Schrad in the treatment of cancer in traditional practices. The present study aimed to determine the potential antiproliferative effects of different Citrullus colocynthis leaf extracts on human cancer cells. Methodology: Antiproliferative and antioxidant effects on HT-29 human colon cancer cells were detected by MTS assay and a modified protocol of the alkaline Comet assay. In vitro antioxidant activities of different leaf extracts were evaluated through DPPH, β-carotene/linoleic acid and reducing power assays. Results: The leaf chloroform extract exhibited the higher cell growth inhibitory activity without induction of DNA damage; it showed to be able to significantly decrease DNA damage induced by H2O2 (100 M). This antioxidant activity seems to be comparable to that of vitamin C (1 mM). Ethyl acetate, acetone and methanol leaf extracts showed to be the most effective in reducing the stable free DPPH radical (IC50 =113 g/ml), in transforming the Fe3+ to Fe2+ (IC50 = 134 µg/ml) and in inducing linoleic acid oxidation with an inhibition of 31.9 %. Conclusion: Our results confirm the antiproliferative potential of Citrullus colocynthis Schrad. on human cancer cells.


2016 - MULTIDISCIPLINARY INVESTIGATION ON EARLY-MID HOLOCENE WILD CEREALS FOUND AT TAKARKORI (CENTRAL SAHARA) [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Rita; Arru, Laura; Mercuri, Anna Maria; di Lernia, S.
abstract

Plant macroremains from rock shelters of central Sahara give information about the environmental conditions during the Holocene, and the adaptive strategies of human groups living in the area. Takarkori was excavated by the Italian-Libyan Archaeological Mission in the Acacus and Messak (directed by S. di Lernia, Sapienza University of Rome) and its chronology ranges from ca. 10,200 to ca. 4,600 cal yr BP (Cremaschi et al. 2014).


2016 - Multidisciplinary analysis of Early – Mid Holocene wild cereal remains from central Sahara (SW Libya). [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Rita; Arru, Laura; Mercuri, Anna Maria; di Lernia, S.
abstract

.Pollen and plant macroremains from rock shelters of central Sahara give information about environmental conditions during the Holocene, and adaptive strategies of human groups living in the area. Wild cereals were long-time exploited and are prevalent among plants selected and transported to these sites. Spikelets and grains of Panicoideae are the most abundant plant remains found at Takarkori, a rock shelter in the Tadrart Acacus Mts. (SW Libya). They have been studied by means of morphological and molecular (ancient DNA) analyses. The excavation by the Italian-Libyan Archaeological Mission in the Acacus and Messak (Sapienza University of Rome and Libyan Department of Archaeology) exposed a surface of 140 m2. The deposit includes stone structures, fireplaces, plant accumulations and a burial area. The site (dated 10,200-4,600 cal yr BP) was occupied throughout Early and Middle Holocene, a pivotal period for human development as include the transition from hunter-gatherer subsistence to food production. Peculiarity of the sequences is the surprising preservation of organic matter. Systematic morphobiometrical analysis was carried out on 1,450 spikelets of Panicum, Echinochloa and Sorghum selected on the basis of their different cultural contexts. The records showed uniform size in each genus. aDNA was extracted testing different protocols and then was studied by the DNA barcoding technique using four chloroplast markers. Bioinformatic analysis of the results allowed to inspect the phylogenetic relationships between the archaeobotanical records and the modern species of African wild cereals.


2016 - Multidisciplinary analysis of wild cereals from the Holocene archaeological site of Takarkori (central Sahara) [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Rita; Arru, Laura; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Lernia, Savino di
abstract

Pollen and plant macroremains from central Sahara archaeological sites give information about the environmental conditions during the Holocene and the adaptive strategies of human groups living in the area . Wild cereals have been exploited for long time and are the prevalent taxa among those selected and transported to shelters and caves. The extraordinary state of preservation of the organic materials found at Takarkori allowed the morphological and molecular analyses of seeds/fruits belonging to the Poaceae family.


2016 - Preliminary Analysis on an Algae-Based Water Scrubber For Syngas [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Allesina, Giulio; Pedrazzi, Simone; ALTUNOZ HATIPOGLU, Meltem; Morselli, Nicolo'; Puglia, Marco; Allegretti, Francesco; Leonardi, Chiara; Giorgini, Loris; Arru, Laura; Tartarini, Paolo
abstract

In this study, two major advantages of microalga Neochloris oleoabundans have been taken into account: purification of the syngas contaminant water (SCW) and providing biomass yield from microalgae growth by using syngas contaminant together with BG11 microalgal growth medium [1] as a feedstock. 10 kW imbert type downdraft gasifier fueled with wood chips have been used to obtain syngas contaminant [2]. A certain amount of the wood-gas is derived after the biofiltering process and is sent to the Water Algae Photo-Bio-Scrubber System (WAPBS): a series of Drechsel bottles are filled with syngas cleansing water (SCW). Tar and particulate are trapped in the water inside the WAPBS, while part of the syngas contaminant is available for the micro algae to be converted into biomass. At the end of the process char and tar content of the syngas contaminant used by microalgae have been observed and microalgal growth of N. oleoabundans have been monitored during the process of WAPBS.


2016 - Preliminary analyses on an algae-based water scrubber for syngas cleaning [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Allesina, Giulio; Pedrazzi, Simone; ALTUNOZ HATIPOGLU, Meltem; Morselli, Nicolo'; Puglia, Marco; Leonardi, Chiara; Giorgini, L; Arru, Laura; Tartarini, Paolo
abstract

Aim of this work is to try to put together the two worlds of syngas filtering and syngas upgrading trough the use of a water-algae water photo-bio-scrubber. The system studied consists of a 10 kWel downdraft gasifier provided with a water scrubber where the syngas is bubbled in a solution of water, nutrients, algae and artificial light (. The heat provided by the syngas keeps the scrubber to the proper temperature where tars are condensed and algae can grow at proper rate. At the same time the CO2 content in the gas can be, in part, converted into biomass by the algae. From the scrubber it is disposed a multi-phase liquid composed of water, biomass, tars and char. The first analysis carried out in this work consisted in a two phases process of the gas. First, in the gasification system, part of the gas was derived into a simple water scrubber where all the flows where measured and the temperature was kept constant at 30 °C. Then the water obtained in such a way was used as basis for algae grown in lab conditions. Results shown the capability of such a system to be used in existing gasification facilities.


2016 - Seasonal monitoring of algal flora in Pamukkale travertines and thermal springs (Denizli-Turkey) [Articolo su rivista]
ALTUNOZ HATIPOGLU, Meltem; Obali, Olcay; Atici, Tahir; Arru, Laura
abstract

In this study, the distribution and seasonal variation of the algal flora and some environmental parameters in the travertines and thermal water springs in Pamukkale-Denizli have been investigated between September 2010 and August 2011. For this purpose, a number of stations have been designated in the travertines, water channels, pools and ponds, where the algae samples were collected for the four seasons. Some of the environmental parameters such as temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen and electrical conductivity were measured in the study area in each season. The collected algae samples were identified, and their cell concentrations were calculated. The obtained data set was statistically analyzed by a series of tests in Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software package. According to the Kruskal Wallis H test (p < 0.05, chi square > 5) there is a significant relationship between the water samples collected from each station and T, pH, DO. According to the Friedman test EC value has a significant relationship according to different seasons (p < 0.05). The highest EC value is observed in the spring, followed by summer, fall and winter, respectively. The relationship between the environmental parameters, species functional group, seasons and stations were observed by using Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) software package. Negative and positive correlation and also the affinity of the species according to the environmental parameters were observed. In this study 35 genera, 57 taxa belonging to Cyanophyta (26 genera, 46 taxa), Charophyta (6 genera, 8 taxa), Chlorophyta (2 genera, 2 taxa) and Dinophyta (1 genus, 1 taxon) have been identified. Oscillatoria limnetica and Cyanobacterium minervae were the most abundant species, followed by Chara.sp., Spirulina subsalsa, Chroococcua minutus, Anabaena sp., Schizothrix thermophila, Gloeocapsa sp. and Pseudanabaena papillaterminata.


2016 - Uses of a water-algae-photo-bio-scrubber for syngas upgrading and purification [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Allesina, Giulio; Pedrazzi, Simone; Arru, Laura; Altunöz Hatipoğlu, Meltem; Puglia, Marco; Tartarini, Paolo
abstract

Aim of this work is to try to put together the two worlds of syngas filtering and syngas upgrading trough the use of a water-algae water photo- bio-scrubber. The system studied consists of a 10 kWel downdraft gasifier provided with a water scrubber where the syngas is bubbled in a solution of water, nutrients, algae and artificial light (. The heat provided by the syngas keeps the scrubber to the proper temperature where tars are condensed and algae can grow at proper rate. At the same time the CO2 content in the gas can be, in part, converted into biomass by the algae. From the scrubber it is disposed a multi-phase liquid composed of water, biomass, tars and char. The first analysis carried out in this work consisted in a two phases process of the gas. First, in the gasification system, part of the gas was derived into a simple water scrubber where all the flows where measured and the temperature was kept constant at 30 °C. Then the water obtained in such a way was used as basis for algae grown in lab conditions. Results shown the capability of such a system to be used in existing gasification facilities.


2015 - Assessment of antioxidant and antiproliferative properties of spinach plants grown under low oxygen availability [Articolo su rivista]
Fornaciari, Silvia; Milano, F.; Mussi, Francesca; Pinto Sanchez, L.; Forti, Luca; Buschini, A.; Arru, Laura
abstract

Background In the human diet, consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables is important in maintaining a good health status and in preventing chronic diseases. It is known that plant derived food is a powerful source of chemopreventive molecules i.e. antioxidants, and spinach (Spinacia oleracea L., Chenopodiaceae) possesses a wide range of metabolites with such biological activity. Plant stress response could lead to the production of metabolites with high value for human health and this could be a tool to enhance the production of molecules with antioxidant activity in plants. Results Data reported in this paper confirm the antioxidant properties of spinach plants, and show a strong antiproliferative activity of leaf extract on HT-29 human cell line. Besides, the hypoxic stress seems to affect the pool of antioxidant molecules present in spinach leaves, as verified by means of HPLC-MS/MS analysis and the aluminium chloride and ABTS assays. Conclusion Our findings - represents a hint for an improvement in the biological and pharmacological properties of spinach plants, being the growth condition a strategy to modulate the spinach phytocomplex profile.


2015 - Integrated analyses of ancient wild cereals from Takarkori rock shelter (SW Libya). In: Florenzano A., Fornaciari R. (Eds.), Proceedings of the IWAA8. Supplemento Atti Società dei Naturalisti e Matematici di Modena 146 (2015), pp. 201-203. ISSN 0365 - 7027. [Altro]
Fornaciari, Rita; Arru, Laura; Jungcurt, Tanja; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Lernia, Savino di
abstract

Both pollen and macroremains recovered from archaeological sites point to a long-time exploitation of wild cereals in SW Libya. Spikelets, florets and grains of Panicoideae are the most abundant plant remains found in the archaeological site of Takarkori (Tadrart Acacus Mts.), and were analysed by means of morphological and molecular (ancient DNA) approaches. By means of DNA barcoding, we aimed to elucidate detailed taxonomic identification, phylogenetic relationships of grasses with modern species and interactions between human groups and changing environments during the Holocene.


2015 - MULTIDISCIPLINARY ANALYSIS OF THE PLANT RECORDS FROM THE HOLOCENE ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITE OF TAKARKORI (SOUTH-WESTERN LIBYA) [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Rita; Arru, Laura; Mercuri, Anna Maria
abstract

In central Saharan massifs stratigraphic sequences of great archaeological and biological relevance, which represent a precious archive for palaeoclimatic and palaeoenvironmental investigations, are well preserved. Takarkori (S-W Libya) is considered representative of the Saharan rock shelters, being one of the few sites preserving the transition from hunter-gatherer subsistence to food production [1]. The rock shelter was excavated by the Italian-Libyan Archaeological Mission in the Acacus and Messak (central Sahara), under the direction of S. di Lernia. It exposes a surface of ca. 140 m2 in extent and 1,6 m in depth. Chronology ranges from ca. 10,200 to ca. 4,600 cal yr BP [2]. Pollen analysis from the sediments of the archaeological site gives essential information about the environmental conditions during the Early and Middle Holocene and the adaptive strategies of human groups living in the area [1]. Pollen analysis shows a prevalent presence of Poaceae whose discrimination at species level is critical to understand the role of grasses collected for food, or fodder, by the dwellings of the area. Therefore, the pollen analyses were integrated with other archaeobotanical studies including plant macroremains and molecular analyses. Morphological and molecular analysis of Panicum and Sorghum spp. spikelets were carried out; they are witness of wild cereals living near the site. The domestication status and interactions with humans may be investigated, for example, through barcoding ancient DNA (aDNA) [3]. We developed an optimised method for DNA extraction from ancient dried spikelets, and ad hoc primer sets were designed. The core-barcode identified by the Consortium for the Barcoding of Life (CBOL) Plant Working group, consisting of portions of the plastid regions rbcL, matK, trnH-psbA and trnL [4] was used as reference. Bioinformatic analysis of the results is in progress and will allow a better taxonomic identification of these African wild cereals remains.


2015 - Olea europaea L., a comparison between pollen morphology and genetic data of Italian cultivars [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Messora, Rita; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Arru, Laura
abstract

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2015 - USO DI ESTRATTI ACQUOSI DI SPINACIO (SPINACEA OLERACEA) NEL FAVORIRE I PROCESSI FISIOLOGICI DI CICATRIZZAZIONE [Brevetto]
Arru, Laura; Buschini, Annamaria; Omini, Gabriele
abstract


2014 - A temporary immersion bioreactor method and relative product - WO 2014072962 A1 [Brevetto]
Domingo ARENCIBIA RODRIGUEZ, Ariel; Arru, Laura
abstract

The present invention is in general a temporary immersion bioreactor method (TIB) . More specifically, the present invention is a temporary immersion bioreactor method for a production of a natural phytocomplex. As it is known, a main objective of contemporary agricultural production is to increase crop yields while reducing costs. To obtain this objective, efforts are generally made to intervene on all abiotic and biotic environmental factors that might harm crops and reduce yields.


2014 - Conferenza: Le erbe delle streghe nella notte di San Giovanni [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Conferenza su invito presso i giardini dell'Orto Botanico di Modena, 21 giugno 2014, ore 21.00


2014 - Conferenza: Un giorno una pianta mi disse… [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Conferenza su invito in occasione della notte Europea dei Musei "Nessun Dorma" presso i giardini dell'Orto Botanico di Modena, 17 maggio 2014, ore 21.30


2014 - EMOSAN: ORGANIC FERTILIZER FROM BOVINE BLOOD [Altro]
Arru, Laura
abstract

l'idea è quella di sviluppare e commercializzare un fertilizzante biologico, ecosostenibile, proveniente dai sottoprodotti dell’industria della lavorazione della carne, in particolare da sangue bovino. Si rende necessario mettere a punto a livello industriale una tecnica nuova per la digestione enzimatica delle proteine del sangue che permetta di ottenere aminoacidi immediatamente utilizzabili dalle piante. Questo processo creerebbe così un circolo virtuoso che, partendo da un prodotto di scarto (il sangue), raccolto e processato, lo rende un fertilizzante azotato ricco in aminoacidi facilmente assimilabili e ideali per l’utilizzo anche in agricoltura biologica. Si renderà necessario effettuare tutte le opportune verifiche sia sulla pianta concimata in questo modo, mettendo i risultati a confronto con quelli ottenuti con i fertilizzanti attualmente in commercio, sia in termini di sicurezza dal punto di vista della salute umana ed ambientale.


2014 - New Insights into the Metabolic and Molecular Mechanism of Plant Response to Anaerobiosis [Capitolo/Saggio]
Arru, Laura; Fornaciari, Silvia; Mancuso, S.
abstract

Under anaerobic conditions, plants apply a wide spectrumof precise adaptive strategies responding to several critical challenges. The ability of efficiently sensing the oxygen presence demonstrates the existence of both direct and indirect ways of perception. The subsequent coordinate metabolic reassessment is currently under study. The complex molecular response implicates not only transcriptional and translational regulation of specific genes but also posttranscriptional and posttranslational regulatory mechanisms, each and all integrating the metabolic settings. Furthermore, the accumulation of typical metabolites during low oxygen stress condition is a key factor that suggests some critical topics in the regulation of metabolic pathways. Here, we summarize the main routes for adaptive behavior during oxygen depletion, from oxygen availability perception to recently discovered molecular mechanisms and metabolic adaptations.


2014 - New Insights on Plant Cell Elongation: A Role for Acetylcholine [Articolo su rivista]
Di Sansebastiano, Gp; Fornaciari, Silvia; Barozzi, F; Piro, G; Arru, Laura
abstract

We investigated the effect of auxin and acetylcholine on the expression of the tomato expansin gene LeEXPA2, a specific expansin gene expressed in elongating tomato hypocotyl segments. Since auxin interferes with clathrin-mediated endocytosis, in order to regulate cellular and developmental responses we produced protoplasts from tomato elongating hypocotyls and followed the endocytotic marker, FM4-64, internalization in response to treatments. Tomato protoplasts were observed during auxin and acetylcholine treatments after transient expression of chimerical markers of volume-control related compartments such as vacuoles. Here we describe the contribution of auxin and acetylcholine to LeEXPA2 expression regulation and we support the hypothesis that a possible subcellular target of acetylcholine signal is the vesicular transport, shedding some light on the characterization of this small molecule as local mediator in the plant physiological response.


2014 - Wild cereals from Holocene central Sahara archaeological sites: aDNA and archaeobotany from the Takarkori rockshelter [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Rita; Olmi, Linda; Arru, Laura; Mercuri, Anna Maria; Lernia, Savino di
abstract

Both pollen and macroremains recovered from archaeological sites point to a long-time exploitation of wild cereals and to the prevalence of these plants among those selected and transported to shelters and caves of central Sahara (southwestern Libya)(1). Spikelets, florets and grains of Panicoideae (Brachiaria, Cenchrus, Echinochloa, Panicum, Setaria, Urochloa, Sorghum) are the most abundant plant remains in these sites. The archaeological excavation of the Takarkori rockshelter by the Italian-Libyan Archaeological Mission in the Acacus and Messak (Central Sahara), Sapienza University of Rome (directed by S. di Lernia), exposed a surface of c. 120 m2 in extent. The 1.6 m thick deposit includes stone structures, fireplaces, plant accumulations, dung layers and a burial area. Layers were deposited during hunter-gatherer and later pastoralist occupational phases. Chronology ranged from c. 9000 to 4200 BP, and was based on stratigraphy, radiocarbon dates, and archaeological materials (2). Systematic morphological analysis was carried out on 200 spikelets/florets selected as representative of different chronological contexts. The records of Panicum, Echinochloa and Sorghum showed homogeneous typology and fairly uniform size in each genus. aDNA extraction confirming the morphological identifications of the three taxa was obtained by Olmi et al. (3). aDNA was successfully performed using several methods (4, 5) and then assayed using PCR with a primer set for the rbcL gene. New aDNA extraction was obtained from Panicum spikelets and the analysis of matK, trnH-psbA and trnL barcode regions may help to identify the records at species level.


2013 - Antioxidant and antiproliferative properties of extracts from spinach grown under low oxygen availability [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Silvia; Milano, F; Mussi, Francesca; Pinto Sanchez, L; Buschini, A; Arru, Laura
abstract

A fruit and vegetable rich diet plays a protective role on human health, reducing the risk of major chronic diseases including cancer. Cancer cells are known to have an unbalance in their redox state, with a higher amount of ROS, thus being more susceptible to any additional oxidative stress. We studied the possible antiproliferative and antioxidant activity of spinach leaf juice from plants subject to hypoxic stress on the HT29 human colorectal adenocarcinoma cell line. The antiproliferative activity was evaluated on a counting chamber of a hemocytometer in order to evaluate the number of cells in active proliferation. The Trypan blue exclusion method was used to determine cytotoxicity. The antioxidant activities were assessed through the alkaline version of the Comet assay, evaluating the DNA damage on 24 h pre-treated HT29 cells. We found that hypoxic spinach leaf extract have a significant antioxidant and protective effect on HT29 cell line when cells are treated with H2O2. The extract exhibits also an antiproliferative effect on the same cells, markedly enhanced when coming from 24 hours hypoxic spinach leaves.


2013 - Chemoprotective effect of spinach plant (Chenopodiaceae) extracts [Abstract in Rivista]
Milano, F; Fornaciari, Silvia; Arru, Laura; Buschini, A.
abstract

Spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.) possesses a variety of metabolites with biological functions, including antitumor and chemoprotective activity[1], but little is known about the modulation of this secondary metabolite induction by abiotic stress (i.e. hypoxia), and it’s correlation to human health. By means of HPLC-MS analysis, we demonstrated that 24 h low oxygen stress can modify the balance of the secondary metabolites presence in spinach. By Comet Assay and Luminescent Cell Viability Assay, we showed that different spinach aqueous extracts and fresh spinach juices have different antioxidant and antiproliferative activities on human colon adenocarcinoma HT-29 cell line, depending on the concentration of antioxidants in each extract. A relathionship among different concentrations of antioxidant molecules present in each extract and biological activities on cells was stated. When the antioxidant content increases over a defined threshold, the overall antioxidant activity is reduced or lost, probably due to a prooxidant activity of such molecules in the biological system[2]. In conclusion, spinach provides a valuable contribution to the field of chemoprevention and prevention of chronic degenerative diseases thanks to its antioxidant and antiproliferative properties.


2013 - Conferenza: Non ti scordar di me - Laura Arru parla dell'intelligenza delle piante [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Conferenza su invito presso il Museo MART di Rovereto, nell'ambito della settimana "A seminar la buona Pianta", promossa da Aboca, a cura di Massimo Mercati (dir. Aboca spa) e Giovanna Zucconi (giornalista). Molti sanno che le piante hanno svariate qualità terapeutiche, o che forniscono ossigeno all’aria che respiriamo, ma pochi, quando le vedono, ricordano che sono organismi viventi come noi. Le piante non sopravvivono semplicemente: sono dotate di sensi e di una capacità percettiva addirittura più sofisticata di quella degli animali, e rivelano un comportamento talmente bello e com- plesso che può solo essere definito 'intelligente'.


2013 - Conferenza: Oltre la Pianta [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Conferenza su invito presso il Gruppo Botanico Amici del Verde, Monza, 22 ottobre 2013


2013 - Consulenza programma televisivo dott. Piero Badaloni [Altro]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Gentile dottoressa, ho avuto modo di apprezzare la sua preparazione professionale in varie occasioni, nel mio ruolo di autore e conduttore di trasmissioni divulgative sulla scienza, recentemente realizzate per diverse emittenti radiotelevisive, in collaborazione con istituzioni pubbliche e private. Con la presente le esprimo la mia intenzione di effettuare in suo favore una donazione sul numero di conto corrente che la prego di segnalarmi, a sostegno dell’attività di ricerca che lei svolge nel campo della fisiologia vegetale. E’ un segno di riconoscimento che ritengo doveroso per la serietà e il rigore con cui porta avanti il suo impegno scientifico in un settore, quello della ricerca, che purtroppo non ha il supporto che meriterebbe per il prezioso contributo che dà al progresso del nostro paese.


2013 - Método de biorreator de imersão temporária - BR 112015010813 [Brevetto]
DOMINGO ARENCIBIA RODRIGUEZ, Ariel; Arru, LAURA V.
abstract


2013 - Oxygen Deficiency-Induced Root-to-Shoot Communication [Capitolo/Saggio]
Arru, Laura; Fornaciari, Silvia; Mancuso, S.
abstract

During anoxic condition, moving from the primary oxygen sensing organ, the root, the plant effects a re-definition of the metabolism across the whole body. The goal of a behaviour analysis approach in the study of root adaptation during anoxic stress is to understand the physiology of the whole plant, where the mechanisms involved in a single organ can influence and determine important metabolic adjustments elsewhere in order to assure plant survival. Since the perception of oxygen availability is the primary step in the plant adaptation to anoxia, the adjustment of molecular pathways for the enzyme biosynthesis in roots have shown to be determinant for an intra-plant communication. In this chapter, we review the main mechanisms adopted in roots subject to anoxia, considering different tolerance degrees and different strategies, and how these adaptations reflect on the behaviour of the entire organism.


2012 - A TEMPORARY IMMERSION BIOREACTOR METHOD AND RELATIVE PRODUCT [Brevetto]
Arru, Laura; RODRIGUEZ Ariel Domingo, Arencibia
abstract

A temporary immersion bioreactor method and a product obtained therefrom, the method comprising steps of: a. in serting one or more plants (200) capable of enacting photosynthesis into a container ( 110); b. inserting a liquid medium (205) into the container ( 110), such as to immerse the plants (200), leaving the plants (200) immersed for a period of time such as to multiply o the plants and grow vegetable biomass; c. removing the liquid medium (205) from the container ( 110) and leaving the plants (200) in an air atmosphere with added carbon dioxide for a further period of time; d. repeating steps b. and c. in alternation for a predefined total period of time, exposing the plants (200) to a photosynthetically-active radiation.


2012 - Accordo di collaborazione culturale e scientifico-tecnologica tra l'Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia (Italia) e l'Università Cattolica del Maule, Talca (Cile) [Altro]
Arru, Laura; DOMINGO ARENCIBIA, A.
abstract

Accordo di collaborazione culturale e scientifico-tecnologica tra l'Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia (Italia) e l'Università Cattolica del Maule, Talca (Cile)


2012 - Bando Short Visiting Professor - Short Visit, Inviting Prof. AD Arencibia, Università Cattolica del Maule, Talca, Cile Prot N 14184 del 04/09/2012 [Altro]
Arru, Laura
abstract

The University of Modena and Reggio Emilia is very pleased to appoint Prof. Arencibia from the Universidad Católica del Maule (Talca, Chile) as Visiting Professor within the Dept. of Life Sciences for the Academic Year 2012-2013.


2012 - Characterization of the sensitivity of HT29 cell line to different chemoprotective phytochemicals [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Mussi, Francesca; Milano, F; Fornaciari, Silvia; Arru, Laura; Buschini, A.
abstract

Phytochemicals are plant based chemicals that mediate their positive health beneficts affecting specific molecular targets such as genes, or stabilizing conjugates affecting metabolic pathways. Their mechanisms of action are not fully understood but their are probably dependent on the type of cell and tissue involved.


2012 - Chemopreventive activity of spinach grown under hypoxic condition: a preliminary study [Poster]
Pinto Sánchez, L; Fornaciari, Silvia; Barozzi, F; Milano, F; Buschini, A; Arru, Laura
abstract

Our Research plans to investigate the presence of secondary metabolites with a significant biological positive effect on human health in spinach plant (Spinacia oleracea) grown under hypoxic condition. Spinach is a natural source of secondary metabolites with a high content of flavonoids1 and phenolic compounds2 that have been shown to possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic, anti-carcinogenic activity. The chemoprotective (antioxidant) and antiproliferative effect of spinach leaf extract were evaluated by means of Comet assay and MTS assay on human tumoral colon cell line HT29. The possibility of the extract to protect cells from the oxidative damage induced by an oxidizing known agent (H2O2) was also taken into account.


2012 - Conferenza: Lo spirito nascosto di una pianta [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Seminario divulgativo in occasione del Fascination of Plants Day (Giornata Mondiale del Fascino delle Piante), organizzato dall'EPSO (European Plant Science Organisation), cui hanno partecipato più di 450 Istituti in tutto il mondo, Modena 18 maggio 2012


2012 - METODO DI BIOREATTORE AD IMMERSIONE TEMPORANEA E RELATIVO PRODOTTO [Brevetto]
Arru, Laura; Ariel Domingo, Arencibia
abstract

A temporary immersion bioreactor method and a product obtained therefrom, the method comprising steps of: a. inserting one or more plants (200) capable of enacting photosynthesis into a container (110); b. inserting a liquid medium (205) into the container (110), such as to immerse the plants (200), leaving the plants (200) immersed for a period of time such as to multiply the plants and grow vegetable biomass; c. removing the liquid medium (205) from the container (110) and leaving the plants (200) in an air atmosphere with added carbon dioxide for a further period of time; d. repeating steps b. and c. in alternation for a predefined total period of time, exposing the plants (200) to a photosynthetically-active radiation.


2012 - Seminario: L'anima delle piante – introduzione alla neurobiologia vegetale [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Seminario su Invito presso il CiMEC (Centro Interdipartimentale Mente/Cervello), Università degli Studi di Trento, Rovereto 26 Mar 2012


2012 - Televisione: co-autore nel programma “Le origini di Gaia” [Performance]
Arru, Laura; Panciera, N; Badaloni, P.
abstract

Co-autore e consulente scientifico nel programma televisivo “Le origini di Gaia”,condotto dal dott. P. Badaloni per il Museo civico di Rovereto, nell’ambito della 23ma rassegna internazionale del cinema archeologico, 1-6 ottobre 2012, Rovereto


2012 - Televisione: ospite in trasmissione televisiva "Il futuro di Gaia" [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Ospite su invito in qualità di esperto di Fisologia Vegetale nella trasmissione in diretta televisiva "Il futuro di Gaia", condotta dal giornalista Piero Badaloni, ospite insieme a G. Vallortigara, direttore del CiMeC; E. Flamini, responsabile scientifico dell'ASI; P. Fiorini, direttore del laboratorio di robotica Altair; e S. Debei, vicedirettore del Cisas. Organizzazione Museo Civico di Rovereto, trasmessa dal Palazzo dei Congressi di Riva del Garda, 28 Apr 2012, in web, su Sky, e sul circuito digitale nazionale Odeon tv.


2012 - Uniformità morfobiometrica in accumuli di cereali selvatici dell'Olocene iniziale-medio nel Sahara Centrale: spighette di Panicum, Echinochloa e Sorghum. [Capitolo/Saggio]
Olmi, Linda; S., Sala; Arru, Laura; Mercuri, Anna Maria
abstract

Il lavoro presenta dati morfometrici relativi a 200 spighette di cereali selvatici diPanicum, Echinochloa e Sorghum, provenienti da un riparo sotto roccia ubicato nel Saharacentrale, al confine tra Libia meridionale e Algeria. Questo sito archeologico si trova nel TadrartAcacus (Patrimonio dell’Umanità UNESCO). Tutta la regione è stata abitata prima da cacciatoriraccoglitoridurante l’Olocene iniziale e, in seguito, da civiltà pastorali. I cereali selvatici sonostati trovati in accumuli e in stato mummificato. Le cariossidi sono state sottoposte ad analisidescrittiva ed è stato possibile estrarre DNA antico da alcuni reperti. I reperti dei diversi generisono risultati assai omogenei per tipologia e uniformi per dimensioni, mentre le analisigenetiche, eseguite sia presso il Centre for Ancient Genetics (Copenhagen) e presso il PlantPhysiology Lab di Modena, hanno confermato le attribuzioni ottenute su base morfologica.


2011 - Antiproliferative and chemopreventive activity of Citrullus colocynthis Schrad extracts [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Mussi, F; Marzouk, B; Arru, Laura; Lazzaretti, M; Aouni, M; Marzouk, Z; Buschini, Am
abstract

Citrullus colocynthis Schrad. is an endemic and wild native plant growing in arid areas in the south of Tunisia. This cucurbitaceae is widely used in Tunisian folk medicine for treating many diseases such as disorders related to the presence of free radicals (i.e. inflammatory disorders, rheumatism, hypertension). In fact, recent studies show that aqueous and acetone extracts of different parts of this plant possess free radical scavenging and antioxidant properties. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the antiproliferative and chemoprotective activity towards DNA oxidative damage of different extract types (aqueous, petroleum ether, chloroform, ethyl acetate, acetone, methanol) of different plant parts (seeds, roots, stems, leaves and fruits) at different concentrations (5÷500µg/ml). We also analyzed the major fraction and three pure products derived from chromatographic separation of seeds and fruits chloroform extracts. MTS and alkaline Comet Assay were performed on different kind of human tumor and normal cell lines (HT29, colon cancer; A549 lung adenocarcinoma; HFL1, fetal lung fibroblast). On HT29 cells, the chloroform extracts proved to be the more interesting ones (GI50 values were lower with respect to the other compounds) and, in particular, the leaves extract with a GI50 of 140µg/ml. This antiproliferative activity, at the highest concentration tested (500µg/ml) seems to be related to a cytotoxic effect (Trypan Blue method) and preliminary data obtained with the Tunel assay suggests the apoptosis pathway involvement. The antiproliferative activity of leaves chloroform extract was detected also on lung cell lines. In particular we have found that the chloroform extracts of seeds, stem and fruits lead a higher antiproliferative activity on tumoral A549 cells with respect to normal HFL1. Regarding the major fraction and the pure products, only the product P1 exert an antiproliferative activity (GI50: 160µg/ml) but only on HT29. DNA migration analysis of HT29 treated for 24h with leaves chloroform extract or the P1 product (0.5÷50µg/ml) didn’t show any induced DNA damage. The treatment of HT29 with H2O2 (100µM) as a known oxidative agent, 5 minutes at 0° after 24h of trea tment with leaves chloroform extract (5µg/ml), showed an antioxidative activity comparable to that of vitamin C (1µM) as demonstrated by the significant reduction in the detected DNA migration. Our results strongly support the pharmacological use of C. colocynthis Schrad.


2011 - Evaluation of chemopreventive activity of spinach extracts of plant grown in normal and hypoxic condition [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Milano, F; Arru, Laura; Fornaciari, Silvia; Lazzaretti, M; Buschini, Am
abstract

Consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables in the human diet is important to maintain a good health status and to prevent chronic diseases. It is well known that plant derived food is a powerful source of chemopreventive molecules such as antioxidants (polyphenols, catechins, etc..). Stress response represents a powerful stimulus for plants to produce metabolites with high value for human health. However, to date, this approach has not been extensively used yet, since too much mechanistic information is still lacking. To find responses to this, we have investigated Spinach (Spinacia oleracea L., Chenopodiaceae) grown in normal or in hypoxic condition. Spinach leaves, commonly present in the human diet both raw and cooked, are a concentrate of bio-active compounds, molecules with a great medical value but rarely diffused in the Plant Kingdom such as phytoecdysteroids. The aqueous extracts of lyophilized Spinach leaves have been administered to tumoral colon cell line HT-29 to evaluate their chemoprotective effects. Cell viability assay (MTS) have been used to assess the antiproliferative activity while Comet Assay have been used to consider the cito-genotoxity of the extracts. The extracts of plants grown in hypoxic condition exert an antiproliferative activity greater than those grown in normal conditions. None of the extracts exerted any genotoxic activity when tested alone. To better understand the way of action of the antiproliferative activity we found, we tested the antioxidant activity of the extracts by the comet assay, after a co-treatment with a known oxidizing agent as H2O2, and the induction of apoptosis in HT-29 cell line by TUNEL assay. Unexpectedly, the spinach extracts did not shown any antioxidants activity in vitro, meanwhile they seemed to induce apoptosis. The analyses of the chemical composition of the extracts are ongoing, they could permit us to identify the chemical mixture present in the different extracts and which compound is responsible for the increased antiproliferative activity shown by the plants grown in hypoxia. What we found does not confirm what reported by Moser that showed an antioxidant activity of spinach in in vivo studies. Taking into account these observations, we plan to simulate the digestion of the extracts to understand if the antioxidant activity could be due to a chemical modification of the original mixture.


2011 - Iodine Fortification Plant Screening Process and Accumulation inTomato Fruits and Potato Tubers [Articolo su rivista]
Caffagni, Alessandra; Arru, Laura; Meriggi, P; Milc, Justyna Anna; Perata, Pierdomenico; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

Iodine is an essential microelement for human health, and Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of such element should range from 40 to 200 µg day-1. Because of the low iodine contents in vegetables, cereals, and many other foods, Iodine Deficiency Disorder (IDD) is one of the most widespread nutrient deficiency diseases in the world. Therefore, investigations of iodine uptake in plants with the aim of their fortification can help reaching the important health and social objective of IDD elimination. This study was conducted to determine the effects of the absorption of iodine from two different chemical forms - potassium iodide (I-) vs. potassium iodate (IO-3) - in a wide range of wild and cultivated plant species. Pot plants were irrigated with different concentrations of I- or IO-3, namely 0.05% and 0.1% (w/v) I-, and 0.05%, 0.1%, 0.2% and 0.5% (w/v) IO-3. Inhibiting effects on plant growth were observed after adding these amounts of iodine to the irrigation water. Plants wereable to tolerate better the higher levels of iodine as IO-3 rather than I- in the root environment. Among cultivated species, barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) showed the lowest, and maize (Zea mays L.) together with tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L.) the highest biomass reductions due to iodine toxicity. After the screening, cultivated tomato and potato resulted good targets for a fortification rate study among the species screened. When fed with 0.05% iodine salts, potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) tubers and tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) fruits absorbed iodine up to 272 and 527 µg/100 g FW from IO-3, and 1,875 and 3,900 µg/100 g FW from I-. These uptake levels were well above the RDA of 150µg day-1 for adults. Moreover, the agronomic efficiency of iodine accumulation of potato tubers and tomato fruits was calculated. Both plant organs showed greater accumulation efficiency for given unit of iodine from iodide than from iodate. This accumulation efficiency decreased in both potato tubers and tomato fruits at iodine concentrations higher than 0.05% for iodide, and at respectively 0.2% and 0.1% for iodate. On the basis of the uptake curve it was finally possible to calculate, although to be validated, the doses of supply in the irrigation water of iodine as iodate (0.028% for potato, and0.014% for tomato) as well as of iodide (0.004% for potato, and 0.002% for tomato), to reach the 150 µg day-1 RDA for adults in 100 g of such vegetables, to efficiently control IDD.


2010 - Donazione per Convegno da privati [Altro]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Donazione per Convegno da privati


2010 - Evolution in Communication and Neural Processing (GECO2010): from first organism and plants to man and beyond [Altro]
Arru, Laura; Maistrello, Lara; Brancolini, Gabriella
abstract

First International Multidisciplinary Congress on Evolution in Communication and Neural Processing, that was held in Modena the 18-19 of November 2010. For the first time, researchers on Plant Physiology, Ethology, Entomology, Engineering, Physics, Medicine, commonly considered to belong to different worlds, joined together to share their opinion about · communication, sensing, signaling in plants · animal brain and collective animal behaviour · brain, mind, and neural network · social insects · bio-inspired robots Can plants discriminate between self and non-self? Does it exist a leitmotiv linking insects, animals, men, plants, and robots? Different evolutionary processes lead to develop communication at all levels of biological organization, from individual organism to ecological communities: from plants that integrate information from the environment into responsive "behaviour", to human mind and artificial intelligence, to the behaviour of more or less decentralized intelligence systems, such as those found in social insects.


2010 - Hormones and neurotransmitter-like molecules interactions: introduction to a very preliminary study in plant [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Silvia; Arru, Laura
abstract

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2010 - I Convegno Internazionale "Evolution in Communication and Neural Processing (GECO2010): from first organism and plants to man and beyond [Performance]
Arru, Laura; Stefano, Mancuso; František, Baluška; Tito Arecchi, F.; Fornaciari, Silvia; Maistrello, Lara; Matteo, Falasconi; Brancolini, Valentina; Fabrizio, Barozzi
abstract

First International Multidisciplinary Congress on Evolution in Communication and Neural Processing, that was held in Modena the 18-19 of November 2010. For the first time, researchers on Plant Physiology, Ethology, Entomology, Engineering, Physics, Medicine, commonly considered to belong to different worlds, joined together to share their opinion about · communication, sensing, signaling in plants · animal brain and collective animal behaviour · brain, mind, and neural network · social insects · bio-inspired robots Can plants discriminate between self and non-self? Does it exist a leitmotiv linking insects, animals, men, plants, and robots? Different evolutionary processes lead to develop communication at all levels of biological organization, from individual organism to ecological communities: from plants that integrate information from the environment into responsive "behaviour", to human mind and artificial intelligence, to the behaviour of more or less decentralized intelligence systems, such as those found in social insects.


2010 - Root oxygen deprivation and leaf biochemistry in trees. [Capitolo/Saggio]
Arru, Laura; Fornaciari, Silvia
abstract

Plants are aerobic organisms, that is, they depend on oxygen for their life. Therefore, oxygen deficiency impacts on the biochemical and molecular processes of the plant cell. However, plant cells have evolved inducible strategies to cope with low oxygen stress conditions. When O 2 is reduced, energy production in the form of ATP is reduced too. Cells respond to this energy crisis by switching to fermentative metabolism, producing ATP and regenerating NAD + through the glycolytic and fermentative pathways. Roots are the organs most easily subject to low O 2 stress, but changes in fermentative enzymatic activities are also seen in leaves. Nevertheless, leaves already possess a constitutive expression of these enzymes. Since leaves are the plant organs less likely exposed to low O 2 conditions, they should have evolved in addition an alternative role for the enzymes usually related to fermentative metabolism. Leaves seem to have the ability to take advantage of the enzymes of a metabolic pathway commonly useful in parts of the plant which can undergo anoxia or hypoxia stress: they make use of fermentative metabolism in a different way, to limit the damage that stress condition imposes to the whole plant.


2009 - Physiological responses of spinach leaves to low oxygen conditions: a clearer picture [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Fornaciari, Silvia; Anceschi, Elena; Arru, Laura
abstract

We are investigating the physiological effects of oxygen deficiency imposed at root level, in plant leaves. Aim of this study is to explore if fermentative metabolism in response to oxygen deficiency stress can be induced also in leaves, and if so, the possible relationships among anaerobic genes (Adh1, Ldh1) transcription and translation. Spinach (Spinacia oleracea) plants are grown in hydroponic culture using the floating system. Hypoxia is spontaneously induced, simply ceasing to oxygenate the nutritive solution; anoxia by bubbling gaseous nitrogen into it. Under normoxia, the level of O2 in the nutrient solution of the hydroponic system is about 7 mg/l. Upon uspending aeration there is a gradual fall in O2 level in the solution, and hypoxia (1-3 mg/l) is reached after approximately 12h. When oxygen deficiency stress is induced by aeration with N2 gas, the level of O2 fall to 2 mg/l within 2h and the complete anoxic condition (O2 < 1 mg/l) is reached after approximately 4h.


2009 - Role of acetylcholine in plant cell elongation [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Fornaciari, Silvia
abstract

It is already known that auxin induces an elongation growth response in plant cells (acid growth). Although it has been studied for decades, the mechanism is still poorly understood, since growth is a very complex, integrated response of the entire cell. Using tomato hypocotyl segments as experimental system to better understand the mechanism involved in auxin-induced elongation, we investigated the effect of different metabolic compounds on the expression of an expansin gene, LeEXPA2, whose transcription is up-regulated by auxin in the growing regions of tomato hypocotyls. Expansins have unique and well-defined cell wall loosening effects, mediating cell wall relaxation in a pH-dependent manner and enable plant cells to elongate in response to their internal turgor pressure.


2008 - A chemometric study of pesto sauce appearance and of its relation to pigment concentration [Articolo su rivista]
Masino, Francesca; Foca, Giorgia; Ulrici, Alessandro; Arru, Laura; Antonelli, Andrea
abstract

Pesto sauce is a typical example of a food matrix in which aspect is of key importance to the final judgment of the consumer, and whose color strongly depends on the production process and on the ingredients. In view of this, the aim of the present work is to evaluate the possibility of quantifying the variability of visual aspect of different brands of pesto sauce, and its relation to the concentration of the main pigments. Sensory evaluation of the appearance of 12 commercial pesto samples was carried out by a panel of 16 assessors who evaluated quantitatively six visual attributes, suitably defined for the description of pesto aspect. A quantitative estimate of the performance of the panel was carried out by means of both univariate and multivariate–multiway chemometric tools (parallel factor analysis, PARAFAC). In addition, the relationship between the mean sensory scores values and the concentrations of chlorophylls, pheophytins and carotenoids was investigated by principal components analysis (PCA). Both PCA and PARAFAC showed good clustering of thesamples and a satisfactory degree of homogeneity of the assessors. Data analysis showed that assessors fundamentally agree about the main visual characteristics of pesto sauces, which are partly correlated with the concentration values of the main pigments.


2008 - Effect of sugars on auxin-mediated LeEXPA2 gene expression [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, Laura; Rognoni, S; Poggi, A; E., Loreti
abstract

The paper deals with the effect of sugarson LeEXPA2 expression in tomato (Lycopersiconesculentum) hypocotyl segments, which is a wellstudiedsystem for analysis of cell elongation. Wetested the interactions between sugars and differentplant hormones classically known to be involved inplant growth. We found the induction of LeEXPA2transcript accumulation to be positively affected bythe presence of sucrose and other metabolizablesugars. The effect mediated by sorbitol and by anon-metabolizable glucose analogue (3-O-methylglucose) is lower, while the structural analogue ofsucrose, turanose, leads to any auxin-inducedincrease in LeEXPA2 transcript abundance.


2008 - Physiological responses of spinach leaves to low oxygen conditions: a very preliminary study [Abstract in Atti di Convegno]
Anceschi, A. E.; Fornaciari, S.; Masino, Francesca; Arru, Laura
abstract

The study of anoxia tolerance has been generally performed on roots rather than on leaves. We are investigating the physiologycal effects on spinach leaves of root anoxia. Ethanol concentration does not show a significant variation after the onset of anoxic condition, nor any increase for all the 12h long experiment; on the contrary, a higher accumulation (up to 0,2 mg/g FW) of lactate occurs. The anoxic stress determines an early 4-fold increase of ADH activity, then it assesses about 2 times higher than control for the rest of the treatment. LDH activity rises only a little under anoxia. It seems not to be a tight correlation between enzymes activity and their own metabolites: the release of volatile end-products of anaerobic metabolism via the shoot, and the so high ADH activity, should have contributed most to ethanol accumulation in leaves. We wonder if the diffusion through the leaf tissue might be responsible of the low ethanol concentration measured. We are working on the isolation of ADH and LDH genes, and related coding sequences, in order to verify at molecular level the regulation of the protein synthesis under anoxic and hypoxic stress.


2007 - Low temperature effect on housekeeping and sucrose synthase genes expression in sugar beet [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Pacifico, D; Moliterni, Vmc; Arru, Laura; Mandolino, G.
abstract

An integrated approach using advanced bioinformatics tools and targeted gene expression analysis was carried out to evaluate the potential use of seven “housekeeping” genes, commonly employed as internal controls in real-time PCR analysis. Adequate testing of reference gene consistency, is always necessary to validate data from any new experimental conditions, since a unique “housekeeping” suitable for every species, organ, developmental stage and treatment does not exist. Thus, the expression stability of glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, elongation factor 1_, actin 11, beta-6 tubulin, polyubiquitin 10, 18S rRNA and 5S rRNA genes were evaluated after exposure to low temperatures and in different organs of Beta vulgaris ssp. vulgaris plantlets. The cDNA sequences were derived from GenBank (NCBI) and TIGR-BvGI (Beta Vulgaris Gene Index), a platform providing high-fidelity tentative consensus (TC), obtained by a reliable and stringent ESTs analysis.


2007 - Sugar effects on early seedling development in Arabidopsis [Articolo su rivista]
S., Rognoni; S., Teng; Arru, Laura; Scm, Smeekens; Perata, Pierdomenico
abstract

Sugars affect a broad variety of processes,from growth and development to gene expression.Although it has already been shown that sugars act assignaling molecules, little is known about the mechanismsby which plants respond to them. Muchprogress has been made on understanding sugarsensing and signaling thanks to the analysis ofmutants with abnormal sugar response. Some of thegenetic strategies applied are based on the inhibitoryeffect of sugar on post-germinative development ofArabidopsis thaliana. High concentrations of exogenoussugars delay germination and arrest earlygrowth, preventing seedlings from expanding cotyledonsand developing true leaves and an extensive rootsystem. The characterization of several Arabidopsismutants identified for their altered sugar sensitivityhas disclosed a network in which sugars and planthormones cooperate to control seedling development.Remarkably, many mutations turned out to be novelalleles of hormone-related genes, mainly ABA andethylene.


2006 - Le scienze "omiche" nella biologia vegetale. [Monografia/Trattato scientifico]
A., Alpi; Arru, Laura; S., Gonzali; L., Guglielminetti; E., Loreti; A., Poggi
abstract

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2006 - Lo studio degli stress idrici e da basse temperature nella barbabietola da zucchero: descrizione e confronto di metodi diversi di analisi [Articolo su rivista]
G., Mandolino; M., Bagatta; P., Bagnaresi; Arru, Laura; Perata, Pierdomenico; D., Pacifico; Vmc, Moliterni
abstract

Nell'ambito del progetto "Miglioramento della barbabietola da zucchero per l'ambiente mediterraneo" si sono studiate le caratteristiche fisiologiche e molecolari della risposta agli stress idrico e da basse temperature di alcune accessioni di bietola. E' stato quantificato l'aggiustamento osmotico in condizioni di stress idrico. Sono stati determinati i potenziali osmotici a pieno turgore ed a turgore zero, ed il volume simplastico. E' stato inoltre sperimentato l'uso eterologo di microarray di Arabidopsis thaliana ibridati con Beta. Circa il 5% dei geni del chip di Arabidopsis hanno trovato sufficiente omologia nell'RNA di bietola, ma i dati ottenuti necessitano di specifici controlli mediante tecniche convenzionali. Per lo studio della risposta alle basse temperature, è stata utilizzata la tecnica cDNA-AFLP, e sono stati ottenuti numerosi frammenti trascritti, modulati dall'esposizionedi piantine di bietola in coltura idroponica a basse temperature (0°C, -2°C, -4°C) in diversi tessuti (foglia, cotiledone, radice). Infine, è stata studiata la risposta ai trattamenti con basse temperature di cinque geni putativi housekeeping di bietola, ed è stata quantificata la loro variazione nei diversi tessuti e condizioni mediante Real Time PCR.


2006 - Seminario: Cannabis sativa to remediate copper-polluted soils [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Phytoremediation employs the ability of some plants to absorbe and accumulate heavy metals from contaminated soils and waters. Generally, plants for phytoremediation are annual herbs with a low or null economic value and very little biomass. The goal is to combine phytoremediation with crops of high biomass or of commercial interest. Cannabis sativa could be one of the candidates for its high biomass, and because it is not involved in the food chain. We examined the ability of Cannabis sativa to take up and tolerate Cu salts from a nutrient solution. By means of electron microscopy and X-ray microanalysis, we observed Cu accumulation in upper leaf epidermal cells, in spiculae and in abaxial trichomes. No traces of this metal was found in epidermal cells of the stem. Even if Cannabis seems not to have evolved a specific tolerance and accumulation mechanisms, it shows to have a considerable potential for phytoremediation purposes. It is able to transfer Cu from the root to the shoot, one of the criteria that must be met to consider a plant well suited for phytoremediation. Moreover the fibres seem not to be affected by Cu contamination, allowing them to be collected and used with economical advantage.


2005 - Genetic bases of resistance to abiotic stresses in durum wheat (Triticum turgidum ssp. durum) [Capitolo/Saggio]
Mastrangelo, A. M.; C., Mare’; E., Mazzucotelli; Francia, Enrico; Arru, Laura; N., DI FONZO; Pecchioni, Nicola; L., Cattivelli
abstract

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2005 - Il Pianeta Acqua nel Continente Agricoltura (Congresso Nazionale dell’Associazione Italiana delle Società Scientifiche Agrarie – AISSA) [Altro]
Stanca, Am; Arru, Laura; Bignami, Cristina; Conte, Angela; Endrighi, Emiro; Franchini, ; Lofiego, D; Manicardi, Gian Carlo; Orlandini, Stefano; Pellegrini, ; Ulrici, Alessandro; Bacarella, Borin; Dazzi, Espen; Gallerani, Giupponi; Magnani, ; Pecchioni, Nicola; Poni, Rossi; Zanni,
abstract

Nell’era della specializzazione nel settore della Ricerca Scientifica, il Convegno ha l’ambizione di mettere insieme i singoli componenti del mondo scientifico agrario, di farli interagire tra di loro e di tentare di affrontare il problema Acqua in modo interdisciplinare. L’avanzamento delle conoscenze sul ruolo dell’acqua nel “Continente Agricoltura” garantirà ricadute di notevole interesse a breve, medio e lungo termine, per migliorare ulteriormente l’interazione “Organismi viventi di interesse agrario e forestale - Terreno – Atmosfera”. L’obiettivo finale è infatti quello di assicurare per il futuro uno sviluppo sostenibile, grazie alla razionale gestione di un fattore ambientale ed economico primario, l’Acqua.


2005 - Lo Iodio nell’alimentazione umana ed il ruolo delle colture erbacee. [Articolo su rivista]
P., Perata; Pecchioni, Nicola; P., Meriggi; Arru, Laura; D., Barabaschi; Caffagni, Alessandra; S., Poggiolini
abstract

Lo iodio è un micronutriente troppo spesso sottovalutato. In Italia sono 5-6 milioni i soggetti che hanno problemi di gozzo, cioè presentano un ingrossamento della tiroide (nell’Italia meridionale il 25% dei ragazzi delle scuole dell’obbligo). La causa è principalmente il deficit di iodio ambientale. Il presente contributo si pone come obbiettivo di conoscere meglio questo elemento e di introdurre il possibile contributo dell’agricoltura alla attività di prevenzione.


2004 - A physiological and molecular description of the water stress in sugar beet [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Bagatta, M; Bagnaresi, P; Arru, Laura; Rognoni, S; Perata, P; Ranalli, P; Mandolino, G.
abstract

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2004 - Copper localization in Cannabis sativa L. grown in a copper-rich solution [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, L; Rognoni, S; Baroncini, M; Medeghini Bonatti, P; Perata, P
abstract

With the aim to examine its potential as a renewable resource to decontaminate polluted soils, electron microscopy combined with X-ray microanalysis was used to investigate the localization of copper in Cannabis sativa grown in hydroponic copper-rich culture. Cu was found to accumulate preferentially in the upper leaf epidermal cells; it was also detected in spiculae and in abaxial trichomes too. Primary bast fibres seem to be not involved in copper accumulation.


2004 - Copper localization in Cannabis sativa L. grown in a copper-rich solution [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Rognoni, S; Baroncini, M; Bonatti, Piera; Perata, Pierdomenico
abstract

With the aim to examine its potential as a renewable resource to decontaminate polluted soils, electron microscopy combined with X-ray microanalysis was used to investigate the localization of copper in Cannabis sativa grown in hydroponic copper-rich culture. Cu was found to accumulate preferentially in the upper leaf epidermal cells; it was also detected in spiculae and in abaxial trichomes too. Primary bast fibres seem to be not involved in copper accumulation.


2004 - Impiego di sistemi vegetali per il recupero di terreni inquinati da metalli pesanti [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, Laura; S., Rognoni; M., Baroncini; P., Perata
abstract

Il problema dell'inquinamento del nostro pianeta è ogni giorno sempre più attuale. Una coscienza dell'uomo più matura e responsabile lo spinge a cercare rimedi eco-compatibili. Accanto alle tecniche tradizionali si affacciano alternative "verdi" che oltre ad essere non invasive hanno il non secondario pregio di essere decisamente meno costose di quelle tradizionali. In un ottica attenta alla tutela dell'ambiente la phytoremediation –l'utilizzo di piante per risanare suoli contaminati- è decisamente una tecnologia emergente. Questa review propone una riflessione sui recenti progressi nella comprensione dei meccanismi alla base della phytoremediation e sulla possibilità che l'applicazione di questo tipo di approccio nel risanamento di terreni contaminati sia effettivamente realizzabile.


2004 - Invited speaker: Sucrose is required for auxin-induction of the tomato expansin LeExp2 [Performance]
Arru, Laura
abstract

Plant cell wall consists of a cellulose microfibrils network associated with matrix components. Expansins are thought to mediate cell wall loosening required for cell expansion in a pH-dependent manner (acid growth theory). We studied the regulation of the tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum cv St. Pierre) expansin gene LeExp2 in isolated segments from etiolated hypocotyl, since LeExp2 is the major expansin gene expressed in growing hypocotyl tissues (Catalá et al., 2000). We tested the ability of hormones with a known role in cell elongation (auxin, brassinolides and gibberellins), alone or combined with sucrose, to induce LeExp2 mRNA, and their effects on hypocotyl segments growth. Both auxin and brassinolide trigger hypocotyl elongation but the induction of LeExp2 by auxin/brassinolide stimulus is strongly dependent on sucrose. Auxin and brassinolide-induced elongation is instead sugar-independent. This work highlights the existence of an auxin/BL-sugar cross-talk, and it provides new insights into LeExp2 role in tomato hypocotyl growth.


2004 - Sucrose is required for auxin-induction of the tomato expansin LeExp2 [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Rognoni, S; Bonatti, Piera; Loreti, E; Poggi, A; Alpi, A; Perata, P.
abstract

.Plant cell wall consists of a cellulose microfibrils network associated with matrix components. Expansins are thought to mediate cell wall loosening required for cell expansion in a pH-dependent manner (acid growth theory). We studied the regulation of the tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum cv St. Pierre) expansin gene LeExp2 in isolated segments from etiolated hypocotyl, since LeExp2 is the major expansin gene expressed in growing hypocotyl tissues (Catalá et al., 2000). We tested the ability of hormones with a known role in cell elongation (auxin, brassinolides and gibberellins), alone or combined with sucrose, to induce LeExp2 mRNA, and their effects on hypocotyl segments growth. Both auxin and brassinolide trigger hypocotyl elongation but the induction of LeExp2 by auxin/brassinolide stimulus is strongly dependent on sucrose. Auxin and brassinolide-induced elongation is instead sugar-independent. This work highlights the existence of an auxin/BL-sugar cross-talk, and it provides new insights into LeExp2 role in tomato hypocotyl growth.


2003 - Advances in understanding barley-Pyrenophora graminea interaction [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Vale', Giampiero; G., Tacconi; Francia, Enrico; E., Dall’Aglio; C., Govoni; Pecchioni, Nicola; Arru, Laura; Delogu, Giovanni; A., PORTA PUGLIA; Stanca, ANTONIO MICHELE
abstract

Pyrenophora graminea Ito and Kuribayashi (anamorph Drechslera graminea) is a seed-borne pathogen causing barley leaf stripe. The disease is widely distributed in most barley growing areas, where it causes serious damage and yield losses. At present disease control is focused mainly on the application of fungicides, but the risk of naturally occurring resistance within the pathogen populations and the increasing legal limitations to the use of fungicides requires the development of new strategies for disease control. To this aim we are currently applying breeding procedures and studying the molecular bases of P. graminea-barley interaction. The interaction P. graminea-barley provides a good model for understanding the molecular basis of diseases caused by seed-borne pathogens. The expression of defence-related genes occurs in barley tissues inoculated with P. graminea, a response that is regulated by several factors depending on both the fungal isolate and the barley cultivar. The induction of these genes was monitored in barley cultivars inoculated with two highly virulent isolates of the pathogen Dg2 and Dg5 (also called I2 and I5 in previous papers) and in barley tissues infected with a hypovirulent mutant of the isolate Dg2. In the former, it was found that plants challenged by the isolates Dg2 and Dg5 responded with the induction of genes coding for peroxidases, thionins and thaumatin-like proteins. A single genetic factor controlling complete resistance to P. graminea, derived from Hordeum laevigatum via cv "Vada", has been introduced into most resistant North-European two-rowed spring barley cvs. This "Vada resistance" was probably introgressed into the barley genome along with the MlLa (Laevigatum) powdery mildew resistance, because the two factors have been found to be linked; this resistance, named as Rdg 1a, has been mapped on the long arm of barley chromosome 2. It is also known that cvs quantitatively resistant to leaf stripe are widespread in Europe. A major QTL conferring resistance to barley leaf stripe was identified in the cv "Proctor" by means of QTL analysis; this QTL accounted for 58.5% of the variation in the trait and was mapped on the centromeric region of barley chromosome 1. The cv "Thibaut" was identified as highly resistant to the most virulent Italian isolate, isolate Dg2. We have described the characterization of the genetic basis of the cv "Thibaut" resistance, the mapping of the locus harbouring this resistance gene and the development of PCR-based molecular markers associated with the resistance, and useful for marker-assisted selection. Near-isogenic lines (NILs) carrying resistance of the cv "Thibaut" against the highly virulent isolate Dg2 were obtained by introgressing the resistance into the genetic background of the susceptible cv "Mirco". The "Thibaut resistance gene" was mapped and called Rdg2a. A PCR-based marker (MWG2018) associated with the resistance gene has been developed to assess the leaf stripe resistant phenotype in barley breeding programs. Several resistant genotypes were identified and among them four were shown to possess the same allele of the cultivar Thibaut at the marker locus. One of them, the cultivar Rebelle, is being used as a source of leaf stripe resistance in winter barley breeding programs. In several resistant lines obtained from five crosses, in which Rebelle acted directly or indirectly as donor of the resistance, the allelic composition at the MWG2018 locus was verified. The results showed that the resistant phenotype of the lines was always associated with the resistance allele of the molecular marker, thereby demonstrating its reliability for selecting the leaf stripe resistance.


2003 - Expansin (LeExp2) induction in tomato hypocotyls requires both sucrose and auxin: absence of correlation with auxin and brassinosteroids-induced elongation [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Rognoni, S; Poggi, A; Loreti, E; Alpi, A; Perata, P.
abstract

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2003 - Isolate-specific QTLs of resistance to leaf stripe (Pyrenophora graminea) in the ‘Steptoe’ x ‘Morex’ spring barley cross [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, Laura; Francia, Enrico; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

Leaf stripe caused by the fungus Pyrenophoragraminea represents a serious threat to grain yield in organicallygrown barley and in conventional Nordic andMediterranean districts, for which resistant cultivars arenecessary. A medium-density, molecular marker map derivedfrom a ‘Steptoe’ (partially resistant) × ‘Morex’(susceptible) spring barley cross and its derived doubledhaploidmapping population inoculated with the fungusmade it possible to identify QTLs of resistance to leafstripe. In order to investigate isolate-specificity of partialresistance, the ‘Steptoe’ × ‘Morex’ segregating populationwas inoculated with two highly virulent P. gramineaisolates, Dg2 and Dg5. The present study demonstratesthat partial resistance to leaf stripe of cv ‘Steptoe’ is governedin part by shared loci and in part by isolate-specificones. One QTL is common to the resistance for the twoisolates, on the long arm of chromosome 2 (2H), twoQTLs are linked on chromosome 3 (3H), and the remainingtwo are isolate-specific, respectively for isolate Dg2on chromosome 2 (2H) and for isolate Dg5 on chromosome7 (5H). The QTL in common is that with the majoreffect on the resistance for each isolate, explaining 18.3%and 30.9% R2 respectively for Dg2 and Dg5. The isolatespecificQTLs mapped in the ‘Steptoe’ × ‘Morex’ barleyreference map support the assumption of Parlevliet andZadoks (1977) that partial resistance may be due to minorgene-for-minor-gene interactions. Map comparisons ofthe QTLs with the known qualitative resistance genes toleaf stripe, Rdg1 (2H) and Rdg2 (7H), as well as with otherQTLs of partial resistance in barley, show that the QTLfor resistance to both isolates mapped on the long arm ofchromosome 2 (2H) does not coincide with the qualitativeRdg1 gene but is linked to it at about 30 cM. One isolate-specific QTL of resistance to P. graminea, mappedon the short arm of chromosome 2 (2H), is coincidentwith a QTL for resistance to Pyrenophora teres previouslymapped in the ‘Steptoe’ × ‘Morex’ cross.


2003 - The PCR-based marker MWG2018 linked to the Rdg2a leaf stripe resistance gene is a useful tool for assessing barley resistance in breeding programs [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, Laura; N., Faccini; C., Govoni; L., Cattivelli; Pecchioni, Nicola; G., Delogu; Stanca, ANTONIO MICHELE; G., Vale'
abstract

Leaf stripe, caused by the fungus Pyrenophora graminea Ito et Kuribayashi [anamorph Drechslera graminea (Rabenh. ex. Schlech.) Shoemaker], is an important seed-borne disease of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.). The objective of this study was to verify the reliability of a PCR-based marker (MWG2018) associated with the resistance gene Rdg2a and to assess the leaf stripe resistant phenotype in barley breeding programs. A large number of barley cultivars and accessions were thus evaluated for their reaction to a highly virulent monoconidial isolate (Dg2) of the pathogen and genotyped for the allele of the molecular marker. Several resistant genotypes were identified and four were shown to possess the same allele as the cultivar Thibaut (the resistant parent of the original mapping population in which Rdg2a was identified) at the marker locus. One of them, cv. Rebelle, is being used as a source of leaf stripe resistance in winter barley breeding programs. The allelic composition at the MWG2018 locus was verified in several resistant lines bred from five crosses, in which Rebelle acted directly or indirectly as donor of the resistance. The results showed that the resistant phenotype of the lines was always associated with the resistance allele of the molecular marker, thereby demonstrating its reliability for selecting leaf stripe resistance. The MWG2018 PCR-based marker can therefore be proposed as a tool to assess the resistant phenotype.


2002 - Genomic regions determining resistance to leaf stripe (Pyrenophora graminea) in barley [Articolo su rivista]
Arru, Laura; Re, Niks; P., Lindhout; G., Vale'; Francia, Enrico; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

Leaf stripe is a seed-borne disease of barley (Hordeum vulgare) caused by Pyrenophora graminea. Little is known about the genetics of resistance to this pathogen. In the present work, QTL analysis was applied on two recombinant inbred line (RIL) populations derived from two- and six-rowed barley genotypes with different levels of partial resistance to barley leaf stripe. Quantitative trait loci for partial resistance were identified using the composite interval mapping (CIM) method of PLABQTL software, using the putative QTL markers as cofactors. In the L94 x 'Vada' mapping population, one QTL for resistance was detected on chromosome 2H; the same location as the leaf-stripe resistance gene Rdg1 mapped earlier in 'Alf', where it confers complete resistance to the pathogen. An additional minor-effect QTL was identified by further analyses in this segregating population on chromosome 7H. In L94 x C123, two QTLs for resistance were mapped, one each on chromosomes 7H and 2H.


2001 - AFLP analysis for characterization of Osteospermum germplasm [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Francia, Enrico; Busconi, M; Berio, T; Morreale, G; Giovannini, A.
abstract

The cultivated genus Osteospermum belongs to the plant family Compositae (Asteraceae). Their native habitat is in South African mountains, therefore these plants are also known under the common name 'African Daisy'. Osteospermums are half hardy or hardy perennial ornamental plants. The genus Osteospermum contains about seventy different species, all perennial plants. The perennial cultivated varieties, not to be confused with the annuals and less valuable cultivated hybrids of Dimorphoteca aurantiaca, are in turn hybrids of O. ecklonis, O. jucundum and other species, and hybrid combinations are often unknown. Also for this hybrid condition they are usually not available from seed, but as vegetatively propagated clones. New varieties are being bred continuously because of the increased economic importance in the production of flowering pot plants and of the increasing demand for accessions with new bright colours and for novel miniature plants. The genus Osteospermum already meets these criteria in its native habitat of South African mountains, and there has been much recent work by botanists and plant breeders to further enhance the natural characteristics of those seventy species of wild plants. Indeed, a characterisation of cultivated Osteospermum germplasm becomes necessary in our country in order to protect the consumers' and breeders' rights, and to help the national breeders in the choice of the parents for a new cross. Moreover, the characterisation by means of molecular markers supplies a way to evaluate biodiversity among commercial varieties and wild relatives. Molecular marker (RAPD) analysis was already demonstrated to be an useful tool to identify Osteospermum varieties and to study their genetic affinities (Faccioli et al., 1999). AFLP analysis has been now carried out on a wide collection of 106 Osteospermum composed by wild species and cultivars belonging to English, Italian and Danish breeding groups. The AFLP protocol has been set up for this ornamental. All the accessions were then tested with four AFLP primers combinations, leading to the undoubtful characterisation of genotypes and to a more accurate understanding of the relationships between the Osteospermum species and cultivars.


2001 - Development of a 'winter' x 'spring' and 'feeding' x 'malting' two-rowed barley map [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Pecchioni, Nicola; Francia, Enrico; Arru, Laura; Baldi, P; Cattivelli, L; Gianinetti, A; Stanca, ANTONIO MICHELE
abstract

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2001 - RAPD and AFLP genetic markers for the characterisation of Osteospermum germplasm. [Articolo su rivista]
T., Berio; G., Morreale; A., Giovannini; A., Allavena; Arru, Laura; P., Faccioli; V., Terzi; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

The level of genetic diversity was assayed within the accessions of three breeding groups in an Osteospermum collection. The NA-profiling via RAPD revealed high levels of polymorphism. enetic variation was highest in the English material, intermediate in the Italian and lowest in the Danish breeding group. The most requent similarity classes were 0.5-0.6 for the English, 0.6-0.7 for he Italian and 0.7-0.8 for the Danish group. Furthermore, an FLP analysis has been carried out on a sample of eight accessions representative of the three groups. Preliminary results indicate that AFLP analysis is suitable to give polymorphism in Osteospermum. RAPD and AFLP analysis can therefore be a useful tool for evaluating genetic diversity for breeding purposes, and for protecting intellectual property rights of new varieties.


2001 - The PCR-based marker MWG2018 linked to the Rdg2a leaf stripe resistance gene is a useful tool for assessing barley resistance in breeding programs [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Delogu, G; Stanca, Am; Valè, Gp
abstract

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2000 - Identification and mapping of a new barley resistance gene towards the leaf stripe agent Pyrenophora graminea [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Tacconi, G; Arru, Laura; Bellini, L; Vale', G.
abstract

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2000 - QTL mapping of leaf stripe (Pyrenophora graminea) resistance in two- and six-rowed barleys [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Delogu, G; Busconi, M; Reggiani, F; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

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2000 - The resistance of barley to leaf stripe caused by Pyrenophora graminea [Articolo su rivista]
Pecchioni, Nicola; G., Tacconi; Arru, Laura; L., Bellini L; G., Valè
abstract

Leaf stripe is a seed-borne barley disease, caused by Pyrenophora graminea.Reactions of cultivars to leaf stripe show great variability, and one race-specific resistancesystem (Rdg1a gene) has been described. In this work it was studied the response of seventwo-rowed and two six-rowed cultivars, and of a two-rowed line to the highly virulent isolatesDg2 and Dg5 of Pyrenophora graminea.NILs have been developed from two highly resistant six-rowed winter cultivars, Thibaut andOnice, after six backcrosses to susceptible cultivar Mirco, in order to map these new sourcesof resistance by means of BSA (Bulked Segregant Analysis).Colinear maps of barley chromosome 1(7H) have been drawn, where the major QTL ofresistance of cv. 'Proctor' to leaf stripe, and two other resistance (R) genes to barley pathogenshave been mapped. These R genes, RsmMx to the seed-borne virus BSMV (Barley StripeMosaic Virus), and Rpt4 to Pyrenophora teres, are associated to common markers in thebarley genome and could help to explain the biological role of the leaf stripe QTL.


1999 - Detection of genetic diversity in barley using tools from DNA technologies [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Terzi, V; Faccioli, P; Pecchioni, Nicola; Pisani, R; Arru, Laura; Stanca, ANTONIO MICHELE
abstract

Characterization of genetic resources has been traditionally based upon morphophysiological traits and, more recently, isozymes and seed storage proteins. The limitations of these descriptors lie in their restricted number, in the small portion of variability studied and in the influence of environmental conditions.In our work, we have developed different kinds of molecular markers that can be proposed as valuable tools for study barley genetic variability.


1999 - Genetic analysis of barley resistance to leaf stripe [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Pecchioni, Nicola; TOUBIA RAHME, H; Tacconi, G; Arru, Laura; Bellini, L; Val, G.
abstract

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1999 - Mapping Lrk10 wheat rust resistance gene in barley [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Arru, Laura; Bellini, L; Gandolfi, R; Valé, Gp; Steffenson, Bj; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

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1999 - Pyrenophora graminea-barley: a model for biomolecular studies of seed-borne desease [Abstract in Rivista]
Porta Puglia, A; Delogu, G; Vannacci, G; Aragona, M; Arru, Laura; Bellini, L; Cristani, C; Faccini, N; Haegi, A; Montigiani, M; Pecchia, S; Pecchioni, Nicola; Stanca, ANTONIO MICHELE; Valé, G; Vergara, R.
abstract

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1999 - The wheat leaf rust resistance gene Lrk 10 maps to barley chromosome 1 HS [Articolo su rivista]
Pecchioni, Nicola; Arru, Laura; L., BELLINI L; Stanca, ANTONIO MICHELE; G., Vale'
abstract

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1998 - Attivazione dei geni di difesa nella interazione orzo-Pyrenophora graminea: clonaggio e regolazione [Relazione in Atti di Convegno]
Valè, G; Aragona, M; Bellini, L; Cristani, C; Arru, Laura; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

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1998 - Effetti dell'anossia sullo sviluppo dell'orzo: moderne strategie biotecnologiche. [Articolo su rivista]
D., Rau; G., Attene; Arru, Laura; G., Valé; Pecchioni, Nicola
abstract

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