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  • Author or Editor: Angelo Signore x
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The dissemination of knowledge about (agro)biodiversity is a strategic factor in communicating the urgent need to defend and protect biological diversity. Although this can be carried out with various media, in recent years social media (or “Web 2.0”) have begun to assume a prominent role. Of the Web 2.0 services, Wikipedia (Wikimedia Foundation, San Francisco, CA) is one of the most powerful and interesting tools, for several reasons, being collaborative by nature, free of charge, multilingual, and accessible online; in addition, anyone can update the materials therein. Within the framework of the regional project “Rural Development Programme 2007-2013,” our research group, responsible of the collection of historical information and morphological characterization of several vegetable crops considered to be at risk of genetic erosion, proposed the use of Wikipedia as a dissemination tool. The objective of this study was to show how to add/modify articles in Wikipedia for online divulgation and to demonstrate its validity by analyzing some data (pageviews, editing history, and the impact of Wikipedia as a referral toward the project’s institutional website) related to the Wikipedia articles that were added/modified. The article about the landrace variety Carota di Polignano carrot (Daucus carota), created from scratch, received more than 15,000 pageviews in less than 2 years. Referrals from Wikipedia increased the visits to the institutional website by 30%, whereas the bounce rate decreased by 15%. Wikipedia may be a good tool to improve the dissemination of knowledge about (agro)biodiversity either online or offline, and the addition in Wikipedia’s pages of scientific journal references and of links to projects’ website may strengthen the diffusion of scientific knowledge.

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Two greenhouse experiments were carried out to analyze the shoot sodium (Na+) partitioning, yield, and fruit quality of ‘Cuore di Bue’, a salt-sensitive heirloom tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.), ungrafted or grafted onto interspecific tomato hybrid rootstocks (S. lycopersicum × S. habrochaites) ‘Maxifort’ and ‘Arnold’ in 2009, ‘Arnold’ and ‘Armstrong’ in 2010, grown at different salinity stress (SS) levels (0, 20, and 40 mm of NaCl in 2009; 0 and 20 mm of NaCl in 2010). In both experiments, an interaction was observed between grafting combinations and SS levels in terms of fruit yield, and fruit juice Na+ content. Under no SS conditions, plant grafted onto ‘Maxifort’ and ‘Armstrong’ provided the highest yield in 2009 and 2010 experiments, respectively. In the presence of 20 mm of NaCl, plants grafted onto ‘Arnold’ provided a marketable yield 23.5% (on average) higher than plants grafted onto ‘Maxifort’ or ungrafted in 2009 and 33% (on average) higher than plants grafted onto ‘Armstrong’ or ungrafted in 2010. The further increase of SS to 40 mm of NaCl considerably reduced the productivity of all grafting combinations. At 20 mm of NaCl, plants grafted onto ‘Arnold’ showed also a higher capacity to modulate shoot Na+ partitioning with respect to ungrafted plants by increasing Na+ accumulation in older leaves (52%) and reducing Na+ content in younger and most active leaves (24%), thus enabling the maintenance of higher K+/Na+, Ca2+/Na+, and Mg2+/Na+ ratios compared with ungrafted plants. Fruit total soluble solids content, titratable acidity, and dry matter were unaffected by grafting at any SS level, whereas under SS, the fruit juice Na+ content of grafted plants was consistently lower (from 19% up to 68%) than that of ungrafted plants. Under moderate SS conditions (20 mm of NaCl), the use of rootstock genotypes such as ‘Arnold’ having a particular ability to reduce Na+ accumulation in younger and most active leaves may increase tomato yield and enhance tomato nutritional value by reducing the fruit juice Na+ content.

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