, Volume 100, Issue 1, pp 111–115 | Cite as

Approximate bilateral symmetry in evaporation-induced polycrystalline structures from droplets of wheat grain leakages and fluctuating asymmetry as quality indicator

  • Maria Olga Kokornaczyk
  • Giovanni Dinelli
  • Lucietta Betti
Short Communication


The present paper reports on an observation that dendrite-like polycrystalline structures from evaporating droplets of wheat grain leakages exhibit bilateral symmetry. The exactness of this symmetry, measured by means of fluctuating asymmetry, varies depending on the cultivar and stress factor influence, and seems to correspond to the seed germination rate. In the bodies of plants, animals, and humans, the exactness of bilateral symmetry is known to reflect the environmental conditions of an organism’s growth, its health, and its success in sexual selection. In polycrystalline structures, formed under the same conditions, the symmetry exactness depends on the properties of the crystallizing solution such as the composition and viscosity; however, it has never been associated with sample quality. We hypothesize here that, as in living nature, the exactness of approximate bilateral symmetry might be considered a quality indicator also in crystallographic methods applied to food quality analysis.


Droplet evaporation method Biocrystallization method Bilateral symmetry Fluctuating asymmetry Polycrystalline structures Arsenic stress 



The authors would like to thank Demeter Italy for funding this research. Particular acknowledgement goes to Dr. Antonello Russo and to Dr. Edda Sanesi for their precious support and encouragement.


  1. Bates TC (2007) Fluctuating asymmetry and intelligence. Intelligence 35:41–46CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Baumgartner S, Doesburg P, Scherr C, Andersen JO (2012) Development of a biocrystallisation assay for examining effects of homeopathic preparations using cress seedlings. eCAM. doi: 10.1155/2012/125945
  3. Brizzi M, Elia V, Trebbi G, Nani D, Peruzzi M, Betti L (2011) The efficacy of ultramolecular aqueous dilutions on a wheat germination model as a function of heat and aging-time. eCAM. doi: 10.1093/ecam/nep217
  4. Busscher N, Kahl J, Andersen JO, Huber M, Mergardt G, Doesburg P, Paulsen M, Ploeger A (2010) Standardization of the biocrystallization method for carrot samples. Biol Agric Hortic 27:1–23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cao DD, Hu J, Huang XX, Wang XJ, Guan YJ, Wang ZF (2008) Relationships between changes of kernel nutritive components and seed vigor during development stages of F1 seeds of sh2 sweet corn. J Zhejiang Univ 9(12):964–968CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Collins TJ (2007) ImageJ for microscopy. Biotechniques 43(1):25–30PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cornelissen T, Stiling P (2005) Perfect is best: low leaf fluctuating asymmetry reduces herbivory by leaf miners. Oecologia 142:46–56PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Engqvist M (1975) Physische und lebensbildende Kraefte in der Pflanze: ihre Wiederspieglung im Kupferchlorid-Kristallbild. Vittorio Klostermann, Frankfurt am MainGoogle Scholar
  9. Gangestand SW, Thornhill R (1999) Individual differences in developmental precision and fluctuating asymmetry: a model and its implications. J Evol Biol 12:402–416CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Granasy L, Pusztai T, Warren JA, Douglasa JF, Borzsonyi T, Ferreiro V (2003) Growth of ‘dizzy dendrites’ in a random field of foreign particles. Nature 2:92–96CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Granasy L, Pusztai T, Borzsonyi T, Warren JA, Douglasa JF (2004) General mechanism of polycrystalline growth. Nature 3:645–650CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hazen RM (2004) Chiral crystal faces of common rock-forming minerals. In: Palyi G, Zucchi C, Caglioti L (eds) Progress in biological chirality. Elsevier, Oxford, pp 137–151CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Heaton S (2001) Organic farming, food quality and human health—a review of the evidence. Soil Association, BristolGoogle Scholar
  14. Huber M, Andersen JO, Kahl J et al (2010) Standardization and validation of the visual evaluation of biocrystallisations. Biol Agric Hortic 27:25–40CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kahl J, Busscher N, Doesburg P, Mergardt G, Huber M, Ploeger A (2009) First tests on standardized biocrystallization on milk and milk products. Eur Food Res Technol 229:175–178CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Knierim U, Van Dongen S, Forkman B, Tuyttens FAM, Spinka M, Campo JL, Weissengruber GE (2007) Fluctuating asymmetry as an animal welfare indicator—a review of methodology and validity. Physiol Behav 92:398–421PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Kokornaczyk MO (2008) Quality comparison of organic and conventional wheat by use of common and holistic methods of analysis. Dissertation, University of PisaGoogle Scholar
  18. Kokornaczyk MO, Dinelli G, Marotti I, Benedettelli S, Nani D, Betti L (2011) Self-organized crystallization patterns from evaporating droplets of common wheat grain leakages as a potential tool for quality analysis. TheScientificWorldJOURNAL 11:1712–1725PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Leung B, Forbes MR, Houle D (2000) Fluctuating asymmetry as a bioindicator of stress: comparing efficacy of analyses involving multiple trials. Am Nat 155(1):101–115PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Li B, Marand H, Esker AR (2007) Dendritic growth of poly(e-caprolactone) crystals from compatible blends with poly(t-butyl acrylate) at the air/water interface. J Polym Sci Pol Phys. doi: 10.1002/polb
  21. Milosevic M, Vujakovic M, Karagic D (2010) Vigour tests as indicators of seed viability. Genetika 42(1):103–118CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Moller AP, Eriksson M (1994) Patterns of fluctuating asymmetry in flowers: implications for sexual selection in plants. J Evol Biol 7:97–113CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Naviliat-Cuncic O (2005) Mirror symmetry and fundamental interactions. Eur Rev 13(2):13–27CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Rapis E (2002) A change in the physical state of a nonequilibrium blood plasma protein film in patients with carcinoma. Tech Phys 47Google Scholar
  25. Shibata T, Matsumoto S, Kogure M et al (2000) Effects of diabetic human blood addition on morphology of cupric chloride dendrites grown from aqueous solutions. J Cryst Growth 219:423–433CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Wilsey BJ, Haukioja E, Koricheva J, Sulkinoja M (1998) Leaf fluctuating asymmetry increases with hybridization and elevation in three-line birches. Ecology 79(6):2092–2099CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Woese K, Lange D, Boess C, Böel WK (1997) A comparison of organically and conventionally grown foods—results of a review of the relevant literature. J Sci Food Agric 74:281–293CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Yakhno T, Yakhno V, Sanin A, Sanina O, Pelyushenko A (2005) Dynamics of phase transitions in drying drops as an information parameter of liquid structure. Nonlinear Dyn 39(4):369–374CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Zalecka A, Kahl J, Doesburg P, Pyskow B, Huber M, Skjerbaek K, Ploeger A (2010) Standardization of the Steigbild method. Biol Agric Hortic 27(1):41–57CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria Olga Kokornaczyk
    • 1
    • 2
  • Giovanni Dinelli
    • 1
  • Lucietta Betti
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Agroenvironmental Sciences and TechnologiesUniversity of BolognaBolognaItaly
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural SciencesUniversity of BolognaBolognaItaly

Personalised recommendations