I have recently given a series of four seminars on how the increased easy of computation has drastically changed how we should approach data analysis and statistics. I have edited the files replacing some of the photographs with images that allow me to release the four files under the CC BY-SA 4.0 licence.
The International Association for Plant UV-Research has been born! It is an offspring of the COST Action FA0906 UV4Growth. I am the ‘communications officer’ of the new association, and I have built the web site that has been since yesterday ‘open to the public’.
I gave the talk ‘Changing views in plant UV-research: From damage to protection to source of information‘ at the seminar commemorating the 10th anniversary of the OMI instrument,
held at the Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland. Released under a CC BY-SA 4.0 licence).
An article describing our project and research group has been published in Projects Magazine special issue on Finland. It is on page 38.
Update (6 June 2014): One grant has been awarded. We are still willing to receive applications for the second one, even for thesis work later in the year.
We have available stipends for supporting two M.Sc. students during their thesis research. Each stipend is 1100 €, and can be fully used to cover living expenses, as research costs will be paid by us.
There is some flexibility in subject but basically there are three options:
1) Study of the role of ultraviolet radiation in the pre-emptive acclimation of tree seedlings to drought. Location: Viikki field. Start: 4 June 2014. Measurements: water use, growth, gas-exchange and/or chlorophyll fluorescence. Supervisors: Pedro Aphalo and Luis Morales.
2) Study changes in gene expression in response to UV radiation in Arabidopsis photoreceptor mutants (and respective wild types). Location: Viikki greenhouse and labs. Start: 1 July at the latest. Measurements: gene expression by PCR. Light measurements.Supervisors: Luis Morales and Pedro Aphalo.
3) Study of accumulation of osmotica in guard cells of Arabidopsis photoreceptor mutants (and respective wild types) through histochemical methods (microscopy). Start: soon. Measurements: microphotography. Supervisors: Fang Wang, Pedro Aphalo, Kurt Fagerstedt.
Applications as PDF attachments to an e-mail to Pedro Aphalo (email@example.com) sent before 31 May 2014, 16:00, EET.Each application should include: short CV including student number, an authorization to check records in Oodi or include a transcript. A motivation letter explaining why you would like to do your Gradu in our research group, also indicating which subject is of most interest, and which if any are of no interest to you. The name of a person (preferably a teacher) able to give references should be provided. This call is not limited to Plant Biology students but previous experience will be taken into account during selection.
Depending on number of applicants, informal interviews may be arranged.
Today I have deleted the old website and setup a redirection for the old address. From today this is the public site of our research group.
RootView, a program for measuring roots, is now available for download at https://www.researchgate.net/publication/260985169_RootView
The manual is also in ResearchGate, the program is 15 years old but has been recently cited a few times.
See http://uv4growth.wordpress.com/2013/05/07/handbook-fully-indexed-in-google-books/ for details or directly preview the handbook in Google books.
As part of my participation in the COST Action UV4growth I have been working on an R packages for analysing and acquiring spectral data using the R system for statistics. They are described and can be downloaded from the blog of the Technical Group 1 (TG1) of the COST Action. The package UVcalc is at version 1.2.0 and will be ready for wide use after a few days of additional testing. There are another two packages under development, but not yet ready for release: one of them is for applying advanced correction algorithms as developed by Lasse Ylianttila from STUK for improving the performance of array spectrometers in the UV region of the spectrum. Another package under development will allow the control and acquisition of spectral data from Ocean Optics spectrometers directly from within R. If you are willing to test or use any of these packages, or even help with the coding, please, contact me. The packages will be released under GPL licence and at the moment are in a Git repository hosted at Bitbucket. The UVcalc repository is already public, the others are private.
The paper “Evolution of suicide as a defence strategy against pathogens in a spatially structured environment” is about bacteria, but plant populations can also be spatially structured. Probably plants do not commit suicide, but it would be worthwhile looking at other possible altruistic types of behaviour in plants within the context of this analysis. The paper is at
A related paper “Altruism can evolve when relatedness is low: evidence from bacteria committing suicide upon phage infection.” This paper is available at
Maybe these papers could be discussed in a future journal club.