June30,2017 | Vol. 2


Celebrating 60 Years of Success of CAAS

The Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences(CAAS)was founded in 1957 and CAAS celebrates its 60th anniversary in 2017. Over the last six decades, CAAS has embarked on a glorious journey and has grown along with China's achievements in science and technology.
Over the past 60 years, under the leadership and care of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and the State Council, CAAS, which is positioned as the unique national team for agricultural innovation, has committed itself to serving rural areas, the agriculture sector and farmers in China.
Adhering to its strategy of boosting agriculture with science and education, the leaders of the Academy constantly uphold the principles of democratic participation, opening-up, and bringing in and fostering high-level experts. CAAS has continually improved its capacity for research and innovation, constantly been increasing its comprehensive competitive strengths and leading the country’s agricultural research progress. Read more >>

Research Update

Rational Design of High-yield And Superior-quality Rice

Rice (Oryza sativa L.) is a staple food for more than half of the world’s population. To meet the ever-increasing demands for food due to population growth and improved living standards, global rice production needs to be doubled by 2030. The development of new elite rice varieties with high yield and superior quality is a challenge for traditional breeding approaches, and new strategies need to be developed. Recently, researchers from China National Rice Research Institute (CNRRI), Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences successfully developed new elite varieties by pyramiding major genes that significantly contribute to grain quality and yield from three parents (Nipponbare, 93-11 and Teqing) over five years. Read more >>

A Rice PECTATE LYASE-LIKE Gene is Required for Plant Growth and Leaf Senescence

Pectate lyase (PEL) is an endogenous pectin-degrading enzyme that is capable of cleaving α-1, 4-glycosidic linkages in demethylated pectin by β-elimination. It is a ubiquitous enzyme in higher plants and is encoded by at least 26, 22, and 14 genes in Arabidopsis, poplar (Populus trichocarpa), and rice, respectively. Although several PECTATE LYASE-LIKE (PLL) genes are considered to play potentially diverse physiological roles in plants, such as being expressed in anthers and pollen, and being involved in fruit softening and development, their molecular mechanism in monocots remains largely unknown.
Recently, researchers from China National Rice Research Institute (CNRRI) at Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Huazhong Agricultural University, Institute of Crop Science of CAAS and Institute of Microbiology at Chinese Academy of Sciences successfully identified a mutant exhibiting dwarfism and an early-senescence leaf phenotype, termed dwarf and early-senescence leaf1 (del1). Read more >>

The Key Technology of Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease Virus (RHDV) Proliferation in vitro was Successfully Resolved by Shanghai Veterinary Research Institute

Recently, the key technology of Rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV) proliferation in vitro was successfully resolved by Small Animal Infectious Disease team of Shanghai Veterinary Research Institute (SHVRI). The research findings have been published in Journal of Biological Chemistry.
RHDV belongs to the family Caliciviridae, a group of non-enveloped animal viruses that cause rabbit hemorrhagic disease (RHD), a highly contagious and lethal disease in rabbits, that is strongly associated with liver degeneration and diffuse hemorrhages and has a high mortality rate of up to 90%. In the past 30 years, a suitable cell culture capable of supporting authentic RHDV has not been established, which in turn has greatly impeded the progress of studies on RHDV life cycle, pathogenicity and control. Read more >>

A Pheromone Antagonist Regulates Optimal Mating Time in the Moth, Helicoverpa amigera

Many insect species use multi-component sex pheromone to discriminate among potential mating partners. In moths, pheromone blends tend to be dominated by one or two major components, but behavioral responses are frequently optimized by the inclusion of less abundant minor components. An increasing number of studies have shown that female insects use these chemicals to convey their mating availability to males, who can assess the maturity of females and thus decide when to mate. However, little is known about biological mechanisms that enable males to assess female reproductive status. Recently, researchers at State Key Laboratory for Biology of Plant Diseases and Insect Pests, Institute of Plant Protection (IPP) at Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) published one paper on Current Biology about a novel mechanism of one pheromone antagonist cis-11-Hexadecenol (Z11-16:OH) employment in Helicoverpa armigera optimal mating times. Read more >>

Beyond Chemoreception: Functional Diversity of Soluble Olfactory Proteins in Insects

Odorant-binding proteins (OBPs) and chemosensory proteins (CSPs) are regarded as carriers of pheromones and odorants in insect chemoreception. Most studies on both classes of proteins have focused on their activities within the insect chemosensory system, trying to understand their roles in detecting and recognizing environmental chemical stimuli. However, there are much more than these highly efficient proteins that have been reported in recent years to be endowed with different functions in non-sensory organs of the insect body, such as pheromone delivery, solubilization of nutrients, development and insecticide resistance. Recently, researchers from State Key Laboratory of Plant Diseases and Insect Pests, Institute of Plant Protection at Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences have published a paper on Biological Reviews about the functional diversity of soluble OBPs and CSPs in insects. Read more >>

International Cooperation Update

Uruguay’s Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries Visited CNRRI

On 18th May 2017, Mr. Tabaré Aguerre, Uruguay’s Minister of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries, visited China National Rice Research Institute (CNRRI). Prof. Cheng Shihua, Director General of CNRRI met with the delegation. The two sides had a deep discussion on further cooperation in rice science and technology.
Cheng Shihua extended a warm welcome to Mr. Tabaré Aguerre for the special visit to CNRRI during his China trip. After firstly introduced the development of rice science and technology in China, Cheng gave a brief introduction on CNRRI’s present situation and international cooperation. He expressed willingness to cooperate with Uruguay’s research institutes and enterprises in the fields of rice science and technology. Read more >>

Promoting the Belt and Road Initiative Strategy through Enhancing Cooperation between China and Vietnam

To promote international cooperation on agricultural sciences between China and Vietnam that is involved in the Belt and Road Initiative, OCRI-CAAS hosted a workshop on peanut genetic improvement during a VAAS (Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Sciences) delegation’s visiting in Wuhan through May 16th to 18th, 2017. The delegation was led by Dr. Ta Hong Linh, Deputy Director of Sciences and International Cooperation Department of VAAS. Prof. Liao Boshou, Director General of OCRI-CAAS met the delegation and proposed further cooperative plans based on extensive discussions.
Dr. Nguyen Van Viet introduced the general situation of agricultural development in Vietnam and research progress on oil crops including peanut. Prof. Liao reviewed the cooperation on peanut improvement between OCRI-CAAS and VAAS. The two sides exchanged current situations about peanut industry, disease control approaches and molecular breeding technology. Read more >>

The 26th IWGO Conference Successfully Held in Beijing

The 26th IWGO (International Working Group on Ostrinia and Other maize pests) Conference, organized by IWGO of IOBC (International Organization of Biological Control)-Global and Institute of Plant Protection at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (IPP-CAAS), collaborated with China Society of Plant Protection and MoA-CABI Joint Laboratory for Bio-safety, was held in Beijing on April 10th to 12th, 2017. The conference achieved a great success and 98 delegates from 11 countries attended the meeting, including the representatives from Belgium, Croatia, China, France, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, Italy, Switzerland, United States and Singapore.
Chaired by Dr Zhenying Wang, IWGO Co-Convenor and Director of Department of Agricultural Entomology of IPP-CAAS; Dr Dongxin Feng, then Director General of Department of International Cooperation of CAAS; Dr Dewen Qiu, Deputy Director General of IPP-CAAS, and Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, IWGO Convenor and Executive Director for Global Operations of CABI, delivered welcome speeches. Read more >>

International Seminar on Sustainable Food Security and Nutrition Under Agriculture Transformation and Urbanization held at AII CAAS

On May 26th, the International Seminar on Sustainable Food Security and Nutrition under Agriculture Transformation and Urbanization was held in Beijing. This seminar was hosted by Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) and the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), organized by Agricultural Information Institute (AII) of CAAS, and was held during celebration for the 60th anniversary of CAAS. Over 100 delegates from international organizations, foundations, universities, research institutes and private sectors attended the seminar.
With the increasing urbanization and sophisticated food systems acting on a global scale, the current transformation of the agricultural landscape brings new challenges to the sustainable food security and nutrition (FSN) at all levels. This seminar discussed the preliminary findings of the HLPE report on “Nutrition and Food Systems”, exchanged ideas on “Critical and emerging issues for FSN” under the overall perspective of the Agenda 2030. Read more >>