Invited Speaker
Prof. Kimiko Itoh

Prof. Kimiko Itoh

Institute of Science and Technology, Niigata University, Japan
Speech Title: Fungal Volatile Compounds promote plant growth, and improve grain quality in rice under abiotic stress condition

Abstract: The impact of climate change on crop production are not limited to reduced crop yields, but also include increased damage from pests and diseases, and physiological disorders, result in the lower quality of the products. In case of rice, the poor grain quality caused by high temperature stress during seed development is expected to become more serious in the future due to the increase in atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Biostimulants is one of the technologies that can solve such agricultural problems caused by climate change and enable sustainable agriculture. A candidate of biostimulants is fungal volatile compounds, VCs, which has great effect on crop yielding and abiotic stress tolerance. In this study, we conducted effect of fungal VCs from the Alternaria alternata on the rice growth, high temperature /elevated CO2 stress tolerance, and seed production. Results showed that the A. alternaria VCs has great effect on biomass increasing, yielding, and improvement of the grain quality in rice under high temperature /elevated CO2 stress condition. To understand the molecular mechanism of the stress tolerance and yielding of rice, we conducted multi-omics analysis of the VCs exposure/non-VCs control rice leaves. The results suggest that phytohormones and redox regulation may be involved in yielding and quality improvement against high temperature /elevated CO2 stress. Acknowledgement This project was supported by the SICORP/EIG-CONCERT JAPAN, ID 16817624, from Japan Science and Technology Agency.

Biography: Dr. Kimiko Itoh was awarded Ph. D in field of plant molecular biology at Toho University, Japan, in 1994. She started her career in PlanTech Research Institute, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, Yokohama, Japan and she was engaged in molecular biological studies of rice, and Brassica genome, development of disease resistant and insect resistant transgenic rice for 10 years, then she moved to Niigata University in 1995. Currently, she is professor of Institute of Science and Technology, Niigata University and is engaged in education at Faculty of Agriculture, and Graduate School of Science and Technology. She is also manager of Radioactive Isotope division and Chemical Biology Unit in Center for Coordination Research Facilities, Niigata University.  Her major is Applied Glycoscience and Plant Science and Her research group currently focused on molecular mechanisms of abiotic stress responses in rice and application of fungal volatile compounds on improvement rice yielding and stress tolerance.