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Unità di ricerca per la maiscoltura (MAC)

Headquarter - BERGAMO
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Unità di ricerca per la maiscoltura (MAC)
Via Stezzano 24
24126 - BERGAMO
Tel: +39-035-313132 - Fax: +39-035-316054

Technical sheets
Research projects

The Station of Maize-culture of Bergamo was constituted in 1920 thanks to the contribution of several organizations and local institutions. Since 1968, it has become a part of the Istituto Sperimentale per la Cerealicoltura as a Peripherical Operational Section (DPR n° 1318 - 23.11.1967). In august 2007, and following the activation of a reorganization plan with the goal to reorganize and rationalize the territorial distribution of the network of those institutes performing agronomical research and experimentations, the Section of Bergamo of the Istituto Sperimentale per la Cerealicoltura has assumed the denomination Unità di Ricerca per la Maiscoltura (Maize research Unit) [CRA-MAC]. From the very start, this structure has contributed to the development of the Italian maize culture with the creation of varieties which were adapted to the national pedo-climatic conditions and, immediately following world war II, with the introduction and adaptation of hybrid maize. Currently, this Unit performs research on the genetic improvement maize. Of particular relevance is its scientific sector, which attempts a genetic approach to productivity improvement, using genetic, biochemical, physiological, and molecular strategies. All this thanks to the e normous increase in productivity due to the use of today's cultivated maize hybrids, which allow a rapid amortization of research costs.


CRA-MAC studies the Genetics and Physiology of fodder and corn maize production with the use of conventional methods and molecular biology techniques. It deals with genetic improvement for resistance, adaptability and nutritional quality of the product, as well as variety selection through the realization of pure lines and hybrids. It cooperates with the Research Unit for animal and vegetable genomics and post-genomic for the identification and the characterization of useful genes and the drawing of genetic maps. It studies the effect of technical means (nitrogen, irrigation, sowing times, crop humidity, density, works, herbicide, cropping systems) on production and on the qualitative characteristics of commercial hybrids. It manages the maintenance and the valorization of local maize resources and of accessions of European interest. CRA-MAC is: Experimental Farm The Maize Research Unit has an experimental farm with approximately 25 Ha of land and all the equipment for parcellar and agronomical farming. Chemics and Physiology Lab The chemics and physiology lab contains the equipment for the quantitative and qualitative analysis of several compounds interesting for human nutrition (proteins, fat, starch, anti-oxidants, phytosterols) and to determine the feeding quality (fiber components, ashes, mico-toxins). Near-infrared spectroscopy allows to develop specific calibration curves for numerous chemical compounds. Molecular Biology Lab Disposes of equipment allowing a genome analysis by means of RFLP, SNP, AFLP, and SSR and of a high through-put technological platform: * fluorescent microarray scanner GenePix 4100 * microarray spotter Omnigrid Accent * liquid sample dispenser robot Biomek 2000 * CEQ-8000 DNA sequencing system * Applied Biosystems RealTime PCR systems Cellular culture Lab The lab contains the equipment necessary to transform plant cells and for microscopic analysis. It furthermore contains growth chambers and a greenhouse. Maize pathology Lab This laboratory is equipped to securely (Biohazard hood) perform all fundamental procedures necessary to maintain cultures of toxin fungi (in particular Aspergillus flavus and Fusarium verticilliodes) and to carry out in vitro bioassays with the aim to evaluate the antifungine activity of proteins and vegetal compounds Germplasm conservation This laboratory (450 m2) contains equipment for the short and medium term storage (4°C) of approximately 4,500 accessions of local Italian and international varieties, of synthetic populations, of pure Italian and American lines, and genetic stocks. This laboratory provides for the conservation, utilization, and valorization of the genetic maize resources. It, furthermore supplies support and complementarities to state of the art research regarding the organization of the maize genome. It, furthermore, promotes research programs aiming at the maintenance of biodiversity, at the characterization and reintroduction of traditional varieties as part of rural promotion activities, at the safeguard of the environment, at the development of tipical and new commodities. General outcome Progress in maize genetics; costitution of competitive varieties with respect to international germplasm; better production evaluation; scientific and technological innovations.


Maize is the elect cereal for the Italian agriculture because of the high productivity potential of the culture and the high nutritional value of the forage: elements that translate into relevant economical advantages due both to the reduction of energy costs at a unitary basis, and to the increase of zootechical production per surface unit. The culture (approximately 11 Mt of grain in 2007; 2.6 million €) accounts for approximately 50% of the national cereal production to which one should add the production of integral forage (280,000 hectares; 600,000 €). Maize is also precious as a raw material to be used in the production of several food and industrial commodities; this is evinced by the large amounts of maize grain yearly used by the transformation industries. It is of general belief that the species will find further employment in "green chemical" projects and as a source of renewable energy (biofuel). The future of Italian maize breeding will hence increasingly depend on the capacity to develop new, more productive, hybrids, that are more easily to grow and endowed with a qualitative differentiation of production allowing to recover the earning power of the culture. Genetic improvement of Maize With this respect, our research wants to guaranty the "in loco" intervention on the genetic improvement of this plant in order to develop base material with morphological traits allowing to maximize the quantitative and qualitative production both under high fertilization and irrigation conditions and under low energy input conditions and to develop even more stable and productive hybrids adapted to our environment. In particular research activity aims to: 1. create new heterotic groups; 2. improve basic gene pools, constitute superior parallel lines and hybrids competitive in the Italian environment in order to maximize productive stability under less than optimal conditions (fertilization, water, phyto-pharmicals etc.) and ambient stress (viruses, insects, drought, fungi); 3. characterize competitive materials in relation with specific "usage qualities" for different final users with the evaluation of genotypic effects and genotype-environment interactions; 4. constitute "modern" materials with different cob-grain characteristics with respect to traditional Italian groups; 5. marker assisted select allowing to accelerate genotypic improvements and to reduce the number of evaluated individuals during field trials. Qualitative Improvement Quanti-qualitative Composition The storage proteins of the maize seed have a low nutritional value as human food and monogastric animal feed, since they contain low levels of the lysine and tryptophan amino acids. The achievement of maize with a more favorable amino acid composition has been pursued by means of genetic intervention. The available endosperm mutations and in particular the o2 mutation, revealing a more equilibrated amino acid composition, constitute a good starting material to obtain improved hybrids. The so-called opaque maize, having all the characteristics in order to be considered of good quality for human food, presents practical disadvantages due to the floury structure of the grain. This Research Unit has started the selection of opaque synthetics with a modified phenotype allowing to constitute agronomical interesting hybrids. Recently, part of this activity has been used to constitute hybrids with vitreous seeds and the constitution of hybrids carrying this characteristic apt at the Italian environment seems justified. Micotoxin Reduction From a micotoxic point of view, the maize grain is under the attack of numerous fungal species, able to produce a large spectrum of toxic metabolites and hence presents the risk of toxin build-up. The development of plant resistance systems able to avoid micotoxin contamination before harvest and of mechanisms of toxin degradation could be favorable strategies. Research objectives are: 1. a monitoring of the presence of Fusarium spp. and Aspergillus as well as the level of toxins inthe maize grain; 2. the identification of genes and natural plant compounds, able to prevent contamination with the above mentioned fungi; 3. the identification of analytical methods to determine the amount of toxin in the lab by means of rapid screening techniques; 4. the development of evaluation methods allowing to measure the degree of resistance of maize genotypes to Fusarium and Aspergillus, through screening methods based on artificial inoculation during field trials and on bioassays in the laboratory; 5. the identification of plants with a higher resistance to pathogen attacks and/or the accumulation of micotoxines. Bioactive compounds Several maize kernel compounds are of interest in pharmacological and nutraceutical employment. It is, therefore, likely that, in the near future, the genetic background of the maize plant will be enriched, through the identification of genes and varieties that can be employed in processes of high additional value such as anti-oxidation actions, the synthesis of biopolymers, the production of oral vaccines and of industrial enzymes. It appears, furthermore, of importance to stimulate research activities aimed at the identification of key genes controlling the biosynthetic pathways active in the seed in order to allow the synthesis of molecules of high commercial value and that increase the quality of seed products both for industrial and consumption purposes. Varieties dedicated to energy production Among the different cultures with a possible use in agro-energy production, maize appears the elect cereal. In particular, the utilization of maize in bio-ethanol production appears promising both due to the high productivity potential of the culture and to the high transformation value into bio-fuels. Furthermore, the maize plant is precious since it provides the raw material to be used in "green chemical" projects for the synthesis of organic compounds (organic acids, polymers, plastic, surfactants, lubricators) of high added value, and capable to substitute for petrol derived products. The general objective of these researches aim at: 1. the identification of idoneous varieties and the development of energy indicators to raise the quanti-qualitative standards for biogas and ethanol production (bio-fuel) through an in-depth examination of our knowledge regarding varieties, and the genetics and biochemical aspects of the productive processes of plants and microorganisms in order to improve the adaptability and the energy yield; 2. the design of agronomic techniques to optimize these productions in the Italian environment; 3. to obtain the transfer of these information into innovative commercial products for the production of renewable energy; 4. to evaluate the technical and economical feasibility of maize cultivation designated to the production of bio-ethanol for locomotion and of bio-gas for energy production. Genetic improvement of the species The genetic improvement of maize is adequately corroborated by genetics and biochemical research regarding groups of mutations that interfere with the plant's wax, carbohydrate, and storage protein synthesis and research regarding those controlling elements that condition the mutagenicity of transposition. This information is useful to further elucidate the genetic and biological mechanisms that determine the synthesis of important compounds and to induce genetic variability with a possible practical application in breeding programs aimed at the genetic improvement of maize. Furthermore, research is performed in order to unravel the regulatory mechanisms of genes based on the variability of the chromatin structure, on histone modifications and their correlation with the control of gene transcription "in planta". This research activity has allowed to identify and functionally characterize the first histone deacetylase of type Rpd3 in a vegetal species. We have, moreover developed a technique to study epigenetic mechanisms in maize, which is applicable also to other cultivated plant species. Currently, our research activity has been orientated towards the use of novel technologies allowing a large scale investigation of the entire epigenome and towards the use of such techniques in the analysis of the role that epigenetic mechanisms play in heterosis and in the interplay between epigenetics and environment. The general objectives are: 1. The use of molecular markers to obtain genetic improvement. In maize an extraordinary level of genetic polymorphism between molecular DNA markers (RFLP, AFLP, SSR and SNP), has been favorably used to decompose the genetic architecture of complex and agronomical interesting traits, allowing their simple Mendelian analysis. Our research aims at the use of molecular markers to improve the efficiency of selection of traits of simple genetic basis, such as insect resistance and of genomic blocks that influence important agronomic traits such as production, environmental stability, and product quality. 2. The analysis of genetic and molecular mechanisms influencing the productivity processes of the seed. The attainment of scientific knowledge in support of the quanti-qualitative improvement of the productivity processes of the maize seed is a marketing opportunity for the agro-food system. This is beneficial to the production of food “made in Italy”, of high qualitative value based on characteristic products derived from the agro-industrial transformation of the maize seed (milk and derivatives, meat and derivatives, semolina) and commercialized on the international market. The maize seed, moreover represents one of the major renewable complex carbohydrate and oil sources, necessary for industrial transformation. Our attention has recently become more focused on those modifications of biosynthetic pathways active in the seed allowing to change the existing metabolites and to produce new ones. Our research aims at the enhancement of our knowledge regarding the quanti-qualitative characteristics of the seed in order to allow the development of maize varieties that better fit market requests and in order to improve the quality of derived food and feed products, furthermore valorizing typical and niche products. This project also aims at the development of innovative genetic techniques used to study and improve on of the most economically and agronomical interesting productive plant processes: the development and germination of the maize seed. The specific objectives of these researches aim to: 1. realize a technological platform as a service for maize seed genetics; 2. develop conceptional innovative and highly efficient molecular markers; 3. "in silicio" reconstruct the principal seed biosynthetic pathways in order to analyze the expression profiles of the genes involved; 4. identify SNiP markers associated with the identified (candidate) genes and, in general, those genes that allow to modify the cellular metabolism in order to accumulate industrially and dietary interesting compounds; 5. identify genes and regulatory tracts with a primary effect on seed improvement; 6. develop innovative plants of high additional value for the transformation industry. Variety Constitution CRA-MAC carries out, al be it with financial and personnel lack, the single breeding program active in the country and in the South of Europe. The maize species is both of strategic importance for the development of the seed industry and of economic importance with regard to R&S of new varieties. The most recently constituted varieties are: Synthetic maize varieties- o2, DOo2, SSSo2, MOD2; BGSF; MP; SSS ELITE; LANCASTER ELITE Pure maize lines- L1058, Lo592, Lo863, Lo1010, Lo1059, Lo1067, Lo1087, Lo1096, Lo1094, Lo1095, Lo1101, Lo1124, Lo1130, Lo1132, Lo1141, Lo1142, Lo1154, Lo1158, Lo1162, Lo1167, Lo1171, Lo1172, Lo1173, Lo1180, Lo1183, Lo1185, Lo1187, Lo1189, Lo1190, Lo1192, Lo1199, Lo1203, Lo1205, Lo1208, Lo1215, Lo1223, Lo1240, Lo1241, Lo1242, Lo1254, Lo1260, Lo126, Lo1265, Lo1270, Lo1271, Lo1278, Lo1279, Lo1281, Lo1283, Lo1288, Lo1290, Lo1292, Lo1301, Lo1320, Lo1322, Lo1366, Lo1474, Lo1412. Lo1084ae, Lo1096ae, Lo1095ae; Lo1363ae, Lo1250ae, Lo1310ae. Lo1378wx, Lo1390wx, Lo1411wx. Hybrid maize (formulated): Lo1123/L1058; Lo1189/Lo1124; Lo1095/Lo1059; Lo1095/Lo1124; Lo1067/Lo1096; Lo1010/L1058; Lo1205/L1058; Lo1207/L1058; Lo1209/L1058; Lo1067/Lo1077; Lo1159/L1058; Lo1189/L1057; Lo1123/L1057; Lo1207/Lo863; Lo1010/Lo863; Lo1159/L1057; Lo1187/Lo1124; Lo1203/Lo1108; Lo1187/Lo1059; Lo1189/Lo863; Lo1189/Lo1058; Lo1183/Lo1260; Lo1123/Lo863; Lo1271/Lo863; Lo1189/Lo863; Lo1189/Lo592, Lo1263/Lo1270, Lo1301/Lo1264, Lo1301/Lo1296B, Lo1203/Lo1208, Lo1285B/Lo1264, Lo1084ae/Lo1250ae, Lo1095ae/Lo1096ae. These pure lines have been used by several Italian and international seed companies in hybrid formulations. Approximately 60% of the commercial vitreous or special maize hybrids is composed of varieties and lines released to the seed industry through the Fondazione Morando Bolognini. Collaborations Our research programs represent an indispensable financial source of the Maize Research Unit and, moreover, have stimulated the cultural and scientific growth of our researchers through the establishment of profitable collaborations with other research institutions and universities both in Italy and worlwide, with regional and provincial agricultural entities and with local organizations. 2002-2009 Publications (selection of most relevant articles which have been published in international scientific journals)

Gauthier P., B. Gouesnard, J. Dallard, R. Redaelli, C. Rebourg, A. Charcosset, A. Boyat, 2002. RFLP diversity and

relationships among traditional European maize populations. Theor. Appl. Genet. 105: 91-99.

Hartings H., R. Pirona, N. Lazzaroni, M. Motto, 2002. Molecular evolution of Opaque-2, a regulatory locus in the genus Zea. Maydica 47: 267-275.

Motto M., P. Ajmone Marsan, 2002. Construction and use of genetic maps in cereals. pp. 347-369. In: S. Mohan Jain, D.S. Brar, B.S. Ahloowalia (Eds.) Molecular Techniques in Crop Improvement. Kluwer Academic Publ., The Netherlands.

Rossi V., S. Varotto, 2002. Insights into G1/S transition in plants. Planta 215: 345-356.

Velasco R., C. Korfhage, A. Salamini, E. Tacke, J. Schmitz, M. Motto, F. Salamini, H.-P. Döring, 2002. Expression of the glossy2 gene of maize during plant development. Maydica 47: 71-81.

Caciagli P., A. Verderio, 2003. Experimental layout, data analysis, and thresholds in ELISA testing of maize for aphid-borne viruses. J. Virol. Methods 110: 143-152.

Marocco A., A. Scandolara, P. Battilani, N. Berardo, 2003. use of near infrared reflectance spectroscopy to detect mould infection in corn kernels. pp. 694.697. In: Strategies for safe food. Proceedings Vol. 2 Congrescentrum Oud Sint-Jan, Brugge, Belgium, 24-26 September 2003.

Pipal A., M. Goralik-Schramel, A. Lusser, C. Lanzanova, B. Sarg, A. Loidl, H. Lindner, V. Rossi, P. Loidl, 2003. Regulation and processing of maize histone deacetylase Hda1 by limited proteolysis. Plant Cell 15: 1904-1917.

Rossi V., S. Locatelli, C. Lanzanova, M.B. Boniotti, S. Varotto, A. Pipal, M. Goralik-Schramel, A. Lusser, C. Gatz, C. Gutierrez, M. Motto, 2003. A maize histone deacetylase and retinoblastoma-related protein physically interact and cooperate in repressing gene transcription. Plant Mol. Biol. 51: 401-413.

Varotto S., S. Locatelli, S. Canova, A. Pipal, M. Motto, V. Rossi, 2003. Expression profile and cellular localization of maize Rpd3-type histone deacetylases during plant development. Plant Physiol. 133: 606-617.

Balconi C., A. Cavallini, L. Natali, M. Motto, 2004. Evaluation of in vitro methods to define the role of the cob and pedicel-placento-chalazal tissues in the amino acid supply to the developing maize endosperm. Plant Sci. 166: 1313-1320.

Berardo N., O.V. Brenna, A. Amato, P. Valoti, V. Pisacane, M. Motto, 2004. Carotenoids concentration among maize genotypes measured by near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS). Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies 5: 393-398.

Brenna O.V., N. Berardo, 2004. Application of near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) to the evaluation of carotenoids content in maize. J. Agric. Food Chem. 52: 5577-4482.

Lauria M., M. Rupe, M. Guo, E. Kranz, R. Pirona, A. Viotti, G. Lund, 2004. Extensive maternal dna hypomethylation in the endosperm of Zea mays. Plant Cell 16: 510-522.

Manetti C., C. Bianchetti, M. Bizzarri, L. Cascinai, C. Castro, G. D’Ascenzo, M. Delfini, M.E. Di Cocco, A. Laganà, A. Miccheli, M. Motto, F. Conti, 2004. NMR-based metabonomic study of transgenic maize. Phytochemistry 65: 3187-3198.

Motto M., E. Lupotto, 2004. The genetics and properties of cereal ribosome-inactivating proteins. Mini Review Medicinal Chem. 4: 493-503.

Berardo N., V. Pisacane, P. Valoti, M. Mariotti, M.G. D’Egidio, S. Moscaritolo, 2005. Traditional and innovative maize genotypes for functional foods. pp. 1191-1194. In: P. Fito, F. Toldrá (Eds.), Innovation in Traditional Foods. Valencia, Spain.

Berardo N., V. Pisacane, P. Battilani, A. Scandolara, A. Pietri, A. Marocco, 2005. Rapid.detection of kernel rots and mycotoxins in maize by near infrared reflectance spectroscopy. J. Agric. Food Chem. 53: 8128-8134.

De Freitas I.R.A., F. Ganança, T.M. Dos Santos, M.A.A. Pinheiro De Carvalho, M. Motto, M. Clemente Vieira, 2005. Evaluation of maize germplasm based on zein polymorphism from the Archipelago of Madeira. Maydica 50: 105-112.

Motto M., H. Hartings, M. Lauria, V. Rossi, 2005. gene discovery to improbe quality-related traits in maize. pp. 173-192. In: R. Tuberosa, R.L. Phillips, M. Gale (Eds.), Proc. Intl. Congress “In the wake of the double helix: from the green revolution to the gene revolution. 27-31 May 2003. Avenue Media, Bologna, Italy.

Sturaro M., H. Hartings, E. Schmelzer, R. Velasco, F. Salamini, M. Motto, 2005. Cloning and characterization of GLOSSY1, a maize gene involved in cuticole membrane and wax production. Plant Physiol. 138: 478-489.

Verde I., M. Lauria, M.T. Dettori, E. Vendramin, C. Balconi, S. Micali, Y. Wang, M.T. Marrazzo, G. Cipriani, H. Hartings, R. Testolin, A.G. Abbott, M. Motto, R. Quarta, 2005. Microsatellite and AFLP markers in the Prunus persica [L. (Batsch)] x P. ferganensis BC1 linkage map: saturation and coverage improvement. Theor. Appl. Genet. 111: 1013-1021

De Freitas I.R.A., F. Ganança, T.M. Dos Santos, M.A.A. Pinheiro De Carvalho, M. Motto, M. Clemente Vieira, 2005. Evaluation of maize germplasm based on zein polymorphism from the Archipelago of Madeira. Maydica 50: 105-112.

Motto M., H. Hartings, M. Lauria, V. Rossi, 2005. gene discovery to improve quality-related traits in maize. pp. 173-192. In: R. Tuberosa, R.L. Phillips, M. Gale (Eds.), Proc. Intl. Congress “In the wake of the double helix: from the green revolution to the gene revolution. 27-31 May 2003. Avenue Media, Bologna, Italy.

Barrière Y., D. Alber, O. Dolstra, C. Lapierre, M. Motto, A. Ordas, J. Van Waes, L. Vlasminkel, C. Welcker, J.P. Monod, 2005. Past and prospects of forage maize breeding in europe. I. The grass cell wall as a basis of genetic variation and future improvements in feeding value. Maydica 50: 259-274.

Pirona R., H. Hartings, M. Lauria, V. Rossi, M. Motto, 2005. Genetic control of endosperm development and of storage products accumulation in maize seeds. Maydica 50: 515-530.

Manetti C., C. Bianchetti, L. Casciani, C. Castro, M.E. Di Cocco, A. Miccheli, M. Motto, F. Conti, 2006. A metabonomic study of transgenic maize (Zea mays) seeds revealed variations in osmolites and branched amino acids. J. Exp. Bot. 57: 2613-2625.

Sturaro M., M. Motto, 2006 Plant cuticular waxes: biosynthesis and functions. Adv. Plant Physiol. 9: 229-251.

Balconi C., H. Hartings, M. Lauria, R. Pirona, V. Rossi, M. Motto, 2007. Gene discovery to improve maize grain quality traits. Maydica 52: 357-373.

Balconi C., C. Lanzanova, E. Conti, T. Triulzi, F. Forlani, M. Cattaneo, E. Lupotto, 2007. Fusarium head blight evaluation in wheat transgenic plants expressing the maize b-32 antifungal gene. Eur. J. Plant Physiol. 117: 129-140.

Cavaliere C., P. Foglia, C. Guarino, M. Motto, M. Nazzari, R. Samperi, A. Laganà, N. Berardo, 2007. Mycotoxins produced by Fusarium genus in maize: determination by screening and confirmatory methods based on liquid chromatography tndem mass spectrometry. Food Chem. 105: 700-710.

Della Porta G., D. Ederle, L. Bucchini, M. Prandi, A. Verderio, C. Pozzi, 2007. Maize pollen mediate gene flow in the Po valley (Italy): source-recipient distance and effect of flowering time. Eur. J. Agron. (on line).

Redaelli R., N. Berardo, 2007. Prediction of fibre components in oat hulls by near infrared reflectance spectroscopy. J. Sci. Food Agric. 87: 580-585.

Rossi V., S. Locatelli, S. Varotto, G. Donn, R. Pirona, D.A. Henderson, H. Hartings, M. Motto, 2007. Maize histone deacetylase hda101 is involved in plant development, gene transcription, and sequence-specific modulation of histone modification of genes and repeats. Plant Cell 19: 1145-1162.

Bononi M., F. Tateo, M. Sturaro, G. Bramato, 2008. Gel-electrophoretic characterization of emmer (Triticum dicoccum Schübler) selected from a local population grown in the Apulia region (Italy). Tecnica Mol. Intl. 59: 133-138.

Castro, C.; Motto, M.; Rossi, V.; Manetti, C. 2008. Variation of metabolic profiles in developing maize kernels up- and down-regulated for hda101 gene. J. Experim. Botany 59: 3913-3924

Hartings, H.; Berardo, N.; Mazzinelli, G.; Valoti, P.; Verderio, A.; Motto, M. 2008. Assessment of genetic diversity and relationships among maize (Zea mays L.) Italian landraces by morphological traits and AFLP profiling. Theor. Appl. Genet. 117/6: 831-842

Pinheiro De Carvalho, M.A.; Teixeira Gananc, J.F.; Abreu, I.; Sousa, N.F.; Marques Dos Santos, T.M.; Clemente Vieira, M.R.; Motto, M. 2008. Evaluation of the maize (Zea mays L.) diversità on the arcipelago of Madeira. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 55 221-233

Prioul, J-L.; Méchin, V.; Lessard, P.; Thévenot, C.; Grimmer, M.; Chateau-Joubert, S.; Coates, S.; Hartings, H.; Kloiber-Maitz, M.; Murigneux, A.; Sarda, X.; Damerval, C.; Edwards, K.J. 2008. A joint transcriptomic, proteomic and metabolic analysis of maize endosperm development and starch filling. Plant Biotechnol. J. 6: 855–869

Rossi V., S. Varotto, S. Locatelli, M. Motto, 2008. Function of the maize histone deacetylase hda101 in plant development. J. Genet. & Breed. 62: 93-98.

Berardo, N.; Mazzinelli, G.; Valoti, P.; Lagana’, P.; Redaelli, R. 2009. Characterisation of maize germplasm for the chemical composition of the grain..
J. Agricul. & Food Chem. 57: 6 2378-2384

Lanzanova, C.; Giuffrida, MG.; Motto, M.; Baro, C.; Donn, G.; Hartings, H.; Lupotto, E.; Careri, M.; Elviri, L.; Balconi, C. 2009. The Zea mays b-32 ribosome-inactivating protein efficiently inhibits growth of Fusarium verticillioides on leaf pieces in vitro. European J. Plant Pathol. 124: 3 471-482

Locatelli, S.; Piatti, P.; Motto, M.; Rossi, V. 2009. Chromatin and DNA modifications in the Opaque2-mediated regulation of gene transcription during maize endosperm development. Plant Cell 21: 5 1410-1427

Motto, M.; Balconi, C.; Hartings, H.; Lauria, M.; Rossi, V. 2009. Improvement of quality-related traits in maize grain: gene identification and exploitation. Maydica 54: 2-3 321-342

Redaelli, R.; Sgrulletta, D.; Scalfati, G.;De Stefanis, E.; Cacciatori, P. 2009. Naked oats for improving human nutrition. Genetic and agronomic variability of grain bioactive components. .Crop Sci. 49: 1431-1437

2010 Publications (selection of most relevant articles which have been published in international and national popular scientific journals) ALFIERI M., REDAELLI R., TADDEI F., GAZZA L., POGNA N.E., 2010 Caratteristiche biochimiche ed elettroforetiche di proteine legate all’amido in avena. Dal Seme 3: 26-36 BALCONI C., GRASSI F., LANZANOVA C., LOCATELLI S., BERARDO N., MOTTO M. 2010. Strategie di difesa naturali contro Diabrotica virgifera virgifera. Informatore Fitopatologico-Supplemento N. 46 a Terra e Vita: 17-19 BALCONI C., C. LANZANOVA, M. MOTTO. 2010. Ribosome-inactivating proteins in cereals. In: “Toxic Plant Proteins”. Edited by J. Lord and Martin R. Hartley. Springer series Plant Cell Monographs 18 DOI 10.1007/978-3-12176-0_8, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg : 149-166 BALCONI C., M.MOTTO, G.MAZZINELLI, N.BERARDO, 2010. Ear secondary traits related to aftatoxin accumulation in commercial maize hybrids under artificial field inoculation. World Mycotoxin J. 3: 239-250 BONARDI P., C. CORTI, C. LORENZONI, N. BERARDO. 2010. High quality protein of mais opaque-2: new results in recently breeding programs. Dal Seme . 3: 19-25. HARTINGS H. V. ROSSI, R. PIRONA, M. LAURIA, M. MOTTO, 2010. The Zea mays mutants opaque-7 disclose extensive changes in endosperm metabolism as revealed by protein, amino acid, and transcriptome-wide analyses. 41doi:10.1186/1471-2164/12/41 MAZZINELLI G., 2010 Rese e performance del mais nel triennio 2007-09. Informatore Agrario - 66 (Speciale Cereali Mais 2010):8-21. TACCONI, G., V. BALDASSARRE, C. LANZANOVA, O. FAIVRE-RAMPANT, S. CAVIGIOLO, S. URSO, E. LUPOTTO, G. VALÈ, 2010. Haplotype analysis of genomic regions associated to broad effective blast resistance genes for marker development in rice. Mol. Breed. 26, 4 595-617
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