Gcri trust Travel Report – 2013 Iffah Mohd Nawi The 10th Solanaceae Conference

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GCRI Trust Travel Report – 2013

Iffah Mohd Nawi

The 10th Solanaceae Conference

The 10th Solanaceaee Conference was successfully held in Beijing, China on 13-17th October 2013, organized by State Key Labaratory of Plant Genomics, Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, and Chinese Academy of Sciences. In this conference, 85 oral and 104 poster presentations were presented by delegates from 24 countries. This year, the title of the conference is ‘Genome versus Phenom’ which focus more on molecular studies.

There are many difference areas that were discussed in this conference including hormone signalling, fruit biology, biotic interactions, abiotic interactions, and metabolomics and proteomics and most of them are focusing on tomato and some in potato, tobacco, pepper, and eggplant. In hormone and development session, one of the studies discussed about LYCOPENE BETA CYCLASE gene which can delayed ripening of tomato fruit by increasing and decreasing ABA and ethylene levels respectively. This is an important finding as it can extend shelf-life of tomato fruit. Meanwhile, studies on fruit development give advantages by identify genes that can control the fruit development. In general, fruit development involves 3 stages which are fruit set, fruit enlargement, and fruit ripening. SlARF8 is one of the genes that was identified as central figure of flower-to-fruit transition.

They also discussed about the studies in improving fruit quality without affecting the taste which is quite complex as many components to be involved in this process. Slowing the ripening by improving the shelf life without affecting the fruit quality is not impossible by understanding the regulatory network that controls ripening. They have identified SlFYFL gene to be involved in fruit ripening by reduced the accumulation of carotenoid and down regulated the genes involve in ethylene biosynthetic including ACSIA, ACS2, ACS6, ACO1, and ACO3.

In plant defence system against biotic and abiotic, few pathogens such as Clasdosporium fulvum and Pseudomonas syringe and environment changes have been identified to infect Solanaceae and affected their production. In order to overcome these problems, transgenic plants were produced that have resistance against pathogens or environment changes. For example, Ty-1, TY-2, and TY-3 gene can generate resistance of tomato plant against Tomato Yellow Leaf Curl Virus (TYLCV). Meanwhile, gene of Double B-box zinc finger (DBB) and Dehydration-Responsive Element-Binding (DREB) have tolerance to drought and stress respectively. These genes have been analyzed by knockout and over-expressed in tomato plant and were found to benefit the plants by improving the

In system biology session, discussions about web-systems were conducted. Plant MetGenMAP, a web-based system and SOL genomics Network (SGN), a Solanaceae database are two useful website for researchers to conduct gene analysis. MetGenMAP system is new to me and I found that it is an interesting system to use as it provides current information on changes in biochemical pathways and biological pathways under given conditions as well as to visualize the metabolite changes. Meanwhile, SGN is a common database among researchers and students in Solanaceae area including myself. The speaker gave guideline to the user on how to use the database and get the information that they want correctly. In this database, information on genomic, genetic, phenotype, metabolite, and biochemical can be identified especially for tomato and potato and other Solanaceae family.

There are also few different studies on carotenoid that have been conducted. Carotenoid is an important pigment in plants that contributes to red, yellow, and orange colors of many fruits and flowers. It also has an important role in preventing photooxidative damage. Meanwhile, other study found that jasmonic acid (JA) and brassinosteroid (BR) can control carotenoid accumulation and ripening of tomato fruits.

This conference is very useful to me as it was the first international meeting that I have attended. There were many researchers around the world that had presented their study in different areas with the same goal as to improve the quality and yield of crops. The valuable data that I got from this meeting will improve my research and help finishing my PhD. I would like to thank to GCRI for their travel award and give me an opportunity to present my work in this international meeting.

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