Proceedings of the Japan Academy, Series B
Online ISSN : 1349-2896
Print ISSN : 0386-2208
ISSN-L : 0386-2208
Volume 84, Issue 2
Displaying 1-2 of 2 articles from this issue
  • Satohiko SASAKI
    2008 Volume 84 Issue 2 Pages 31-57
    Published: February 28, 2008
    Released on J-STAGE: February 12, 2008
    The physiological characteristics of the dominant tree species in the tropical rain forest mainly belonging to dipterocarps as well as the environmental conditions especially for the light in the forest were studied to establish the silvicultural system for the forest regeneration in the tropical South Asia. The flowering patterns of the dipterocarp trees are usually irregular and unpredictable, which make difficult to collect sufficient seeds for raising the seedlings. The field survey revealed the diverged features of the so-called gregarious or simultaneous flowering of various species of this group. Appropriate conditions and methods for the storage of the seeds were established according to the detailed analyses of the morphological and physiological characteristics of the seeds such as the low temperature tolerance and the moisture contents. The intensity and spectra of the light in the forest primarily determine the growth and the morphological development of the seedlings under the canopy. Based on the measurements of the diffused light at the sites in the tropical forest in the varying sunlight, the parameters such as “the steady state of the diffuse light” and “the turning point” were defined, which were useful to evaluate the light conditions in the forest. To improve the survival of the transplanted seedlings, a planting method of “the bare-root seedlings”, the seedlings easy to be handled by removal of all leaves, soil and pots, was developed. Its marked efficiency was proved with various dipterocarps and other tropical trees by the field trial in the practical scale. Tolerance of the various species to the extreme environmental conditions such as fires, acid soils and drought were examined by the experiments and the field survey, which revealed marked adaptability of Shorea roxburghii as a potential species for regeneration of the tropical forests.

    (Contributed by Satohiko SASAKI, M.J.A.)
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  • Takeshi OHAMA, Yuji INAGAKI, Yoshitaka BESSHO, Syozo OSAWA
    2008 Volume 84 Issue 2 Pages 58-74
    Published: February 28, 2008
    Released on J-STAGE: February 12, 2008
    In 1985, we reported that a bacterium, Mycoplasma capricolum, used a deviant genetic code, namely UGA, a “universal” stop codon, was read as tryptophan. This finding, together with the deviant nuclear genetic codes in not a few organisms and a number of mitochondria, shows that the genetic code is not universal, and is in a state of evolution. To account for the changes in codon meanings, we proposed the codon capture theory stating that all the code changes are non-disruptive without accompanied changes of amino acid sequences of proteins. Supporting evidence for the theory is presented in this review. A possible evolutionary process from the ancient to the present-day genetic code is also discussed.

    (Communicated by Takao SEKIYA, M.J.A.)
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