September 30,2017 | Vol. 3


Discussing Overseas Agricultural Plans and Enhancing Foreign Agricultural Cooperation

The Department of International Cooperation and the Center for International Agricultural Research of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) jointly convened “Going Global” Seminar on August 23rd, 2017. Prof. Tang Huajun, President of CAAS and member of the Party Group of the Ministry of Agriculture attended the seminar. Prof. Wu Kongming, Vice President of CAAS, presided the seminar.
Prof. Tang Huajun pointed out that the Vision and Campaign of Jointly Promoting the Agricultural Cooperation for the ‘Belt and Road’ Initiative, jointly issued by four ministries and commissions, marked the top level design and blueprint of foreign agricultural cooperation, CAAS needs to make international cooperation plans and provide supports for China’s overall development layout on a higher level so as to keep promoting the science & technology governance ability and the status of China in the “Belt and Road” initiative, at the same time to enhance the leading role of Chinese agricultural technology for the countries along the “Belt and Road” by using agricultural science and technology cooperation as links. Read more >>

Research Update

The New Progress on the Study of Pomegranate Female Sterility by Zhengzhou Fruit Research Institute

A paper named Transcriptomic Analysis Reveals Candidate Genes for Female Sterility in Pomegranate Flowers reported by Cao Shangyin's lab from Zhengzhou Fruit Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) was published on the Journal of Frontiers in Plant Sciences in August. The key stage and reason for female sterility as well as the candidate genes controlling and regulating female sterility in pomegranate was reported in this paper.
Pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) is a shrub that is native to central Asia (Holland et al., 2009), it is valued for its juicy aril sacs, which are claimed to be of benefit to human health. Two types of flowers are produced on an individual pomegranate tree: FMF and BF. FMFs, which are referred as “female-sterile”, or “bell-shaped”, fail to set fruit and eventually fall from the tree. Read more >>

Genomic Variation Associated with Local Adaptation of Weedy Rice During De-domestication

Researchers from CNRRI of CAAS, Zhejiang University, Zhejiang Sheng Ting Biotechnology Co., Ltd., University of Virginia and Chinese Academy of Sciences collaboratively published an article entitled Genomic Variation Associated with Local Adaptation of Weedy Rice During De-domestication.
Weedy rice (red rice), a conspecific weed of cultivated rice (Oryza sativa L.), is a significant problem in South and Southeast Asia and Latin America. In China, an emerging threat occurred in Jiangsu, Guangdong, Liaoning and Ningxia of China that causes serious damages to rice quality and yield. Because weedy rice is similar to cultivated rice morphologically, genetically and ecologically, it is difficult to control with herbicide which could lead to serious damages to rice production in the world. Read more >>

Genome-wide Assessment of Population Structure, Linkage Disequilibrium and Resistant QTLs in Chinese Wild Grapevine

As an important germplasm source worldwide, it is necessary to study Chinese wild grapevine‘s genetic diversity, population structure and linkage disequilibrium (LD). In this study, 81 strains of Chinese wild grapevine were studied and constituted the core collection. These strains were genotyped according to 160 genome-wide SSR (simple sequence repeat) markers. All SSR markers were widely spread across the strains and revealed a total of 3469 alleles. After population structure analysis, all the Chinese wild grapevine strains were grouped into two subgroups that were well matched with the geographical distribution and the results were published by our research team. Of all SSR pairs, 8.3% (P < 0.01) were in LD. Read more >>

Dissecting Genetic Basis of Grain Shape and Chalkiness Traits in Hybrid Rice Using Multiple Collaborative Populations

Grain shape and chalkiness are two important components of rice grain quality. Previous studies have characterized several important genes controlling grain shape traits and a few QTLs that are responsible for grain chalkiness. However, the genetic architecture of the two traits in hybrid rice remains unclear. Recently, for purpose of the genetic dissection of grain shape and chalkiness in hybrid rice, researchers from China National Rice Research Institute (CNRRI) of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Shanghai Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology (SIPPE) and Shanghai Normal University selected 17 representative hybrid crosses and constructed large genetic populations consisting of totally 10074 F2 lines. They performed genome-wide high-resolution mapping for the traits of grain shape and grain chalkiness in hybrid rice using multiple collaborative populations for joint analyses. Read more >>

New Progress has been Achieved on the Pathogenesis of Toxoplasma gondii by SHVRI Researchers

Recently, Prof. Wang Quan,Dr. Xue Junxin and Dr. Jiang Wei in Shanghai Veterinary Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) and Prof. Huang Kehe from Nanjing Agricultural University, found that thioredoxin reductase (TR) was able to resist oxidative damage from host macrophages and could be considered as a crucial virulence factor of Toxoplasma gondii infection. The study was published on line in FASEB Journal (impact factor 5.498) in July 7, 2017.
The thioredoxin reductase (TR) can help pathogens resist oxidative-burst injury from host immune cells by maintaining thioredoxin-reduction state under condition of NADPH consumption. TR is a necessary virulence factor for enabling the persistent infection of some parasites. We performed bioinformatics analyses and biochemical assays to characterize the activity, subcellular localization, and genetic ablation of Toxoplasma gondii TR (TgTR) to shed light on its biological function. Read more >>

New Regulatory Mechanism of Shade Avoidance Response Unraveled By Biotechnology Research Institute

Recently, a research team led by Professor Wang Haiyang from Biotechnology Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences has made a great progress on new regulatory mechanism of shade avoidance response.
With the ever increasing world population, it is a daunting task to produce enough food, feed and fuel targeted bioproducts with limited resources. Over the past few decades, increasing planting density has been an effective way of improving crop yields per unit land area. However, the key factor that limits planting density in modern agricultural practice is the plant’s shade avoidance response, which is triggered when plants sense a reduction of red (R) to far-red (FR) light ratios (R:FR) in their environment due to absorption of R light by neighboring plants. Typical shade avoidance responses include increased plant height, elevated leaf angles to horizontal, reduced branching, decreased leaf blade area and early flowering. Read more >>

International Cooperation Update

CNRRI Delegation Visit Pakistan for Cooperation in Rice Sciences

At the invitation of the International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences, University of Karachi, experts delegation of China National Rice Research Institute led by CNRRI Director General Prof. Cheng Shihua paid a visit to Pakistan from July 23 to July 27, 2017.
During their stay, the delegation visited Dr. Panjwani Center for Molecular Medicine & Drug Research, the H.E.J. Research Institute of Chemistry, Jamil-ur-Rahman Center for Genomic Research at ICCBS, Tissue Culture Technologies International, Agriculture, Supply & Price Department of Sindh Province and other research institutions and agricultural sectors. On-site investigation for rice production and hybrid rice seed production was also undertaken by the delegation in Sindh Province. Read more >>

CAAS President Tang Huajun Meets with Executive Director of CGIAR

On July 4, 2017, Prof. Tang Huajun, President of CAAS met with Mr. Grainger-Elwen Jones, Executive Director of CGIAR and his delegation. The two sides?exchanged?views on further cooperation and held consultations on China's permanent membership in the CGIAR.
Prof. Tang congratulated Mr. Grainger-Elwen on his election as executive director after the CGIAR system reform. He stated that bilateral cooperation has yielded fruitful results since China joined CGIAR. CGIAR has promoted the development of agricultural S&T in China through the provision of germplasm resources and personnel trainings. With the tightening of resources, environment and other agricultural development constraints, agricultural S&T innovation is becoming crucial important to ensure food security. Read more >>

IAEA/RCA Regional Training Course on Advanced Mutation Techniques for Induction and Screening of Green Traits in Crops held in Beijing

RCA regional training course on “Advanced Mutation Techniques for Induction and Screening of Green Traits in Crops” was held in Beijing through August 14th to 18th, 2017. Sponsored by the International Atomic Energy Agency and China Atomic Energy Agency, organized by Institute of Crop Sciences of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, 31 participants from 15 different RCA countries including Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, Lao P.D.R., Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Viet Nam and China attended the training course. Dr. Gong Xifeng, Director General of Department of International Cooperation of CAAS, and Prof. Liu Luxiang, Deputy Director General of ICS presented at the opening ceremony. Read more >>

First Sino-Bulgarian Workshop on Agricultural Science and Technology Convened

The First Sino-Bulgarian Workshop on Agricultural Science and Technology was held in Bulgaria second largest city Plovdiv on July 5th, 2017. It was supported by the Ministry of Science and Technology of China (MOST) and the Ministry of Education and Science of Bulgaria, and was jointly convened by Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Bulgaria Plovdiv Agricultural University and Bulgaria Plovdiv University of Food Technologies. Mr. Chen Linhao, Deputy Director General of the Department of International Cooperation of MOST and Ms. Zelatiana Karova, Chief Head of Science Division, Ministry of Education and Science of Bulgaria, attended and addressed the Workshop. Also, Domestic representatives from universities and enterprises such as School of Agriculture and Biology of Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Bright Dairy attended the Workshop. Read more >>

New Chapter Unveiled in China-Norway Agricultural S&T Cooperation

Prof. Wan Jianmin, Vice President of Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) attended the second meeting of China-Norway Joint Committee on Science and Technology Cooperation and the Forum on China-Norway Cooperation on Arctic Agricultural Climate Change and Agriculture Innovation from August 27th to September 1st, 2017. At the witness of Prof. Wan Gang, Minister of Science and Technology (MOST); Mr. Wang Min, Chinese Ambassador to Norway , and Torbj?rn R?e Isaksen, Norway's Minister of Education and Research. Prof. Wan Jianmin and Nils Vagstad, Director General of Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO) jointly signed MOU on Agricultural Science and Technology Cooperation. This document identifies priorities and mechanisms for the bilateral cooperation on agricultural science and technology innovation and highlights establishment of platforms and supporting joint research in the next three years. Read more >>