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The 10th International Congress of Plant Pathology was organised by the Chinese Society for Plant Pathology on behalf of the International Society of Plant Pathology and took place at Beijing’s International Convention Centre. The Centre was located next to the Bird’s Nest Stadium and other venues from the 2008 Beijing Olympics. This was a large meeting, with over 1500 delegates, of whom some 800 were from countries outside China.
In the context of “Bio-security, food safety and plant pathology: the role of plant pathology in a globalised economy” the conference revolved around the most challenging question agriculture is facing today: how do we feed a billion hungry people? With the expected global population of over 9 billion people by 2050, the current status of 220 billion dollars global annual yield losses due to plant diseases, the annual wastage of around 35-40% of our food, and the fact that half of the global grain yield is fed to livestock to satisfy the increasing world demand for meat, discussions centred around how to increase food production by 70% by 2050.
The BSPP was well represented at the Congress, both as one of the sponsors, and through its financial help towards the travel costs of a number of delegates.
Below is a compilation of some of the highlights of the meeting (and associated workshops) as seen through the eyes of a number of these BSPP-funded participants.
Mike Shaw BSPP President and University of Reading, UK
For me, the conference and the piggybacked International Epidemiology Workshop was a chance to survey the field of Plant Pathology and get a feel for what interests people around the world. Of course, the view is biased, but still at a more specialised conference one gets no feel for how little (or how much) the wider community of researchers knows what you do. I went to some talks that excited me, some that confirmed what I vaguely knew, and alas, I went to many whose presenters simply hadn’t thought about how or what could be communicated in 20 minutes to people with normal eyesight and reading speed. I was fascinated by a visit to the poly-tunnel systems of the market gardens outside Beijing, using every joule of sunshine to extend the season in a beautiful low-tech system, and amazed and admiring at the China wide integrated management of wheat yellow rust. And most useful of all, I spoke to many people from many countries about pathological topics and came away with examples that I’ll use this autumn in my disease management course. Sadly, those lectures won’t be to very many students: the urgency of finding ways to pass on expertise in pathology and keep the field a living one in the UK remains great.
Bruce Fitt University of Hertfordshire, UK
My colleagues and I attended the 11th International Epidemiology Workshop (22nd to 25th August) and the 10th International Congress of Plant Pathology (25th to 30th August). Each day of the workshop started with invited lectures that often focussed on aspects of modelling crop disease epidemics, though Mike Jeger discussed the usefulness of the ‘disease triangle’ in plant disease epidemiology and Zhanhong Ma described the implementation of national strategies for monitoring and control of epidemics of wheat yellow rust in China.
Besides the poster sessions, there were also discussion sessions on multiple pathosystems, decision support systems, statistical methods, network and gene theory and relationships between ecological and molecular methods in plant disease epidemiology. The UK was well represented at the workshop and the UK contingent offered to host the 12th International Epidemiology Workshop in 2017 in either Cambridge (April) or Edinburgh (July). Moving on to the ICPP meeting, for me the highlight of the plenary sessions was the work on food security, climate change and plant diseases. It was fascinating to see the correlation between periods of climate change and dynasty change in China over the last 2000 years. On the first evening there was a blackleg (phoma stem canker) workshop attended by more than 100 delegates. The attendees included representatives of the Chinese (AQSIQ) and Australian (DAFF) quarantine services and it was a privilege to visit AQSIQ later in the week to discuss strategies to decrease the risk that Leptosphaeria maculans will become established in China, where only the less damaging L. biglobosa is currently present in oilseed rape crops.
Dawn Arnold University of the West of England, UK
The opening lecture at the ICPP Congress was presented by Qifa Zhang from the Huazhong Agricultural University, China and focused on crop genomics and biotechnology: feeding the billions. He discussed that the production of the three major food crops, maize, rice and wheat has been increasing but this needs to continue to feed the worlds increasing population. The focus of this talk was on rice and how the use of the rice genome sequence has allowed a better understanding of genes and regulatory elements that can be utilised for future crop improvements.
The following plenary session was on the role of plant pathology in a globalised economy. This session included a number of presentations including an interesting one from Jan Leach, Colorado State University, USA.
She started with her take home message which is the answer to the question ‘how will plant pathologists make a difference?’ her answer was ‘we feed the people!’ She discussed the need to secure food sources in the background of climate change which was a general theme of some of the opening talks who made some interesting observations such as Xiao-Bing Yang, Iowa StateUniversity, USA, discussing the problems associated with extreme weather events effecting disease outbreaks and making management more difficult. He also stated that a ‘globalised economy leads to less diversified crop production systems which are likely to be vulnerable to epidemics’. These opening presentations set the scene for the rest of the conference and were certainly food for thought.
Julie Lock Moulton College, UK
The 5th International Phytophthora, Pythium and Related Genera Workshop was held over the course of two days and allowed me to reflect on research and methods (applied and genomics) currently used. The Congress itself provided a good mixture of topics with a variety of informative talks about current research. My individual focus was given to: host-plant interactions, biological control of plant diseases, fruit tree diseases, invasive and emerging diseases, plant diseases and control in protected cultivation, new careers and roles for plant pathologists, and soil borne diseases and their control. The workshop and congress lent themselves well to better versing me in the broader context of my own research into the treatment of Specific Replant Disease on Sorbus aucuparia, allowing me to consider new avenues of investigation.
Norm Schaad Editor for Plant Pathology, USA I presented an invited talk entitled ‘Technical challenges for specific, sensitive detection of seed-borne bacterial pathogens’ in the concurrent session on Global seed health concerns and solutions.
Talks at the Congress of most interest to me included, ‘Improved detection and monitoring of seed-borne plant pathogens in China’ by Jianqiang Li, ‘Global standards in seed health testing’ by T. Aveling and ‘Seed-borne pests and phytosanitary issues’ by F. Petter.
On Aug 23 I met with students of Prof. Li at the China Agriculture University (CAU) to discuss survival of Clavibacter michiganensis subs. michiganensis, and on Aug 24 I presented a talk on detection of bacteria to the Beijing Tongzhou International Seed Industry, Science and Technology Park.
Mahendra P Srivastava CCS Haryana Agricultural University, India My first presentation was in the session on ‘Plant Pathology Extension’ on 28th August. In this session, P Yang deliberated on ‘Current status and prospective disease management in China’, followed by Mary K Hausbeck on ‘Role of extension specialist in Michigan’. Iftikhar Ahmad from Pakistan discussed ‘Farmer Field School and its role in management of plant diseases in Pakistan’ and Steve Koike appraised the audience about ‘County-based plant pathology program in California: A novel model for carrying out the extension Mission’. My talk asserted that knowledge transfer to farmers is crucial to achieve sustainability.
The goal is achieved through traditional tools of extension and information technology powered by motivation and inspiration.
The emphasis was on the role of IPM to reduce pesticide misuse, role of seed treatment, host resistance, plant clinics and knowledge dissemination with innovative bulletins invigorating communication with farmers. In addition, I co-organized the Keynote Session on ‘Plant Pathology in Asia’.
Terauchi Ryohei from Japan spoke on ‘Whole genome analysis of rice – Magnaporthe interactions’ while X. Zhou from China delivered his keynote address on ‘Advances in understanding begomovirus satellites’. My talk discussed how plant health clinics hold the key to food security, with a call upon the participating nations to create more well-organized multispecialty clinics with independent physical identity, better infrastructure and resources, and a redefined role to boost food security.
Maria Borlinghaus SRUC, Edinburgh, UK
Of particular interest to me were the sessions on fungicides and crop protection.
The innovation of fungicides is a naturally slow process, with only 1 in 139,000 compounds making it to the market nowadays. Globally, six companies dominate the pesticide market worth $47 billion, but actually only 30% of ingredients are patented among which QoIs are currently the biggest sellers. There are 67 modes of action but more than 50% are at resistance risk. Biofungicides make up only a small percentage of the market, worth $3. 2 billion, but it has become clear that chemical and non-chemical protection is needed for current and future legislation.
Different strategies to reduce the resistance risk and to gain similar or better efficacy were suggested, along with use of biological control agents and organic amendments as part of organic farming and also in conventional agriculture, and also the use of soil suppressiveness to add value to the direct pathogen control. It was emphasised at this conference that we need more integrated holistic approaches to disease management to ensure effective crop protection that meets the demands of our growing global population for long term food security.
Ronaldo Alberto, Central Luzon State University, the Philippines In the afternoon of the first day, I attended the concurrent session on “Climate Change and Plant Diseases” where Sukumar Chakraborty spoke on the realistic experimental approaches to climate change. All the topics were interesting, such as the paper by Magdalena Siebold whereby they were able to simulate and control the soil temperature to determine the effects of soil warming on the life cycle of pathogens on oil seed rape. Later in the week I also attended the ‘Forensic Plant Pathology’ session because of my interest on how forensics can be applied in plant pathology, most especially on toxins produced by plant pathogens, and this was elucidated very well by Dr Gamliel of ARO Volcani Center, Israel and Dr Fletcher of OSU, USA. Late in the afternoon session, one presentation that caught my attention was the short talk of William Roberts, Australia, whereby he was asking if “quarantine action should be based on DNA sequences rather than species”, which led to quite a lot of questions from the audience. On the last day of the conference, the papers presented in the morning were on the ‘Molecular Host-Pathogen Interactions’ and short talks about resistance.
Ruth Le Fevre University of Cambridge, UK
This was my first international conference and I completely underestimated just what kind of scale it would be on. I am particularly interested in the practical applications of plant pathology research and so scoured the line-up for relevant topics and only struggled with my schedule because of how difficult it was to decide which talks to see. The sessions on ‘Beneficial Plant Pathogens for Weed Control’ and ‘Biological Control of Plant Diseases’ included great talks from Louise Morin, on using Phoma macrostoma as a bioherbicide for broad -leaf weed control, and Monica Maurhofer, on the use of plant-associated insect toxin producing pseudomonads for biological control of insect pests and fungal diseases, respectively. However my particular favourite was in the session on ‘Biotechnological Applications in Plant Disease Control’ given by Cyril Zipfel from the Sainsbury Lab in Norwich who talked about using biotechnology to engineer the arsenal of plant pathogen recognition receptors in crop plants to combat disease resistance.
Magdalena Siebold University of Göttingen, Germany Having worked in the field of climate change during my PhD I was curious to find out what the ICPP had to offer in that area. The importance of climate change research was addressed by many keynote and plenary talks during the meeting. The concurrent session ‘Climate change and plant diseases: what have we learnt in 20 years?’ covered a broad range of methods from modelling to experimental in eight interesting talks. For example, Adam Sparks (IRRI, Philippines) presented a modelling approach combining crop, disease and weather data to generate spatial estimates of disease severity and yield losses due to leaf blast and bacterial leaf blight of rice in Africa. Sukumar Chakraborty (CSIRO, Australia) stressed that findings from realistic empirical research approaches are the basis for accurate predictions of climate change effects on plant pathogens. Besides this session, however, there were only 7 posters on climate change and plant diseases. Overall, multi-factor climate change experiments involving plant pathogens under field conditions are still a rare thing to find.
Princy Varghese University of Nottingham, UK
Among the diverse informative sessions, I liked the session that covered aspects of post-harvest pathology like post-harvest diseases, current control measures, their advantages and limitations. The session ended with an open discussion on what can be done in the future to overcome the limitations of current control measures, where both the speakers & the audience got actively involved. Another session where I was much benefitted was molecular diagnostics of plant pathogens. My poster under the topic Plant food security: a network of excellence on bio security gave me encouraging and constructive comments from the delegates.
Azawei Alamene University of Nottingham, UK
The conference was very exciting. I learnt a lot from eminent scholars of plant pathology from different countries of the world, and experienced the latest developments in many fields. This provided me with invaluable experience for exchange of ideas, information and research techniques related to my area of research.
Tijana Stancic Harper Adams University, UK
I very much enjoyed ICPP2013 which was my first Plant Patholgy Congress, and the whole Congress was very well organized and packed with fascinating talks. Each day comprised a few parallel sessions and it was often hard to choose which one to attend. The most relevant for my work was the session on mycotoxins. This included a very interesting talk by Naresh Magan who presented results from microarray work on toxin production under different climate change environmental factors.
Paola Battilani presented work on the Fusarium verticillioides-maize interaction. It was very interesting to hear about the role of fatty acids on the hidden fumonisins. We were reminded of the importance of masked and hidden mycotoxins. Modelling levels of mycotoxins is becoming an important issue in many research groups. Posters of the session were equally interesting as talks given. I was particularly interested to read about promising new approaches for inhibition of mycotoxin biosynthesis such as RNA silencing technology and a novel immunosensing method for mycotoxin detection based on microcantilever sensors. Morning and evening sessions of the Congress were above all motivating. I will not forget thought provoking presentation from Jan Leach and her recap on the role of plant pathologists and that is to feed the people.
Elias Sowley University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana
I attended all the plenary sessions which were characterised by very interesting presentations like the one made by Prof. Maria Gullino, during which she highlighted the challenges likely to be faced by world agriculture because of climate change. These challenges included unfavourable temperatures, shortage of water and loss of arable land. She indicated that methyl bromide an ozone-depleting compound, has been phased out in Italy in compliance with the Montreal protocol. Dr Jan Leach related his presentation to the millennium development goals particularly goal one which is aimed at eradicating extreme poverty. It was interesting to learn that, although this goal has been met, 1. 2 billion people are still hungry with poor people spending about 70% of their income on food. He proposed among other things the breeding of crops that promote health. He added that the ‘omics’ technology offers the opportunity for building genomes through synthetic biology which can be particularly useful for improving plant disease resistance. There were numerous concurrent scientific sessions, so I attended presentations which I thought were more relevant to my area of expertise.
They included Jacqueline Fletcher’s presentation on ‘Human pathogens on plants: Role of plant pathologists in a multidisciplinary mitigation strategy’ which highlighted the increasing trend in diseases associated with the consumption of fresh produce.
She suggested that human pathogens on plants (HPOP) which are found in faeces, soil and silage among other sources are responsible for this trend.
This worrying trend can be more serious in developing countries where many vegetable growers lack access to municipal water. It was interesting to know that plant pathogens can have a helper function, enabling HPOPs to colonise plants. The presentation by Andy Leadbeater on ‘New developments in chemical disease management’ was also interesting.
He indicated that there are gaps in crop protection which are not being addressed by existing fungicides that can be addressed by innovations focusing on Succinase Dehydrogenase Inhibitors (SDHIs), using mixtures of chemicals to minimise resistance and developing new fungicides with lower application rates. According to him the production of botanicals (plant extracts) by major companies is on the rise. This holds a lot of promise for the developing countries where a lot of plants with pesticidal properties abound. As a plant pathology teacher, I found the presentation on ‘Outcomes based learning and active learning techniques in plant pathology’ by Darin Eastburn very exciting and innovative. The emphasis on what is learnt and not what is taught has helped me to reflect on my methods of teaching. I liked the ‘Think-Pair-Share’ approach which allows students time to process information, validate or self-correct. The use of Student Response Devices is also very interesting. I received very useful comments on my poster titled ‘Evaluation of some botanicals for the control of seedborne fungi of maize (Zea mays L. )’. I also met old friends and made new ones. I left Beijing satisfied that I have acquired more knowledge through the rich presentations and my interaction with colleagues and senior colleagues from across the globe. On the whole it appeared to me that the ‘-omics’ technology has become very popular and is potentially useful for the management of pests and diseases, but the high cost of equipment may be a limiting factor for researchers in developing countries, particularly Africa. I had the feeling that more conscious efforts are being made by scientists and plant pathologists in particular, to minimise the impact of climate change through various innovations.
Dan Maxwell University of Bristol, UK
It was wonderful to be able to attend a conference in such a fascinating city, with so many famous sights to visit.
Many of the presentations focussed on the importance of plant pathology in ensuring future food security, a theme that ran throughout the conference.
There was an enormous range of topics covered in the various sessions, including a large number of virology talks that were of particular relevance to my PhD research on insect transmission of viruses.
I really enjoyed helping out on the BSPP stand and promoting the Society by handing out lots of small green fluffy toys! The poster session was a great opportunity to present my work to a large number of people and I received very helpful suggestions and feedback on my project.
Rose Murray University of Bristol, UK
Attending the 10th International Congress of Plant Pathology was a real highlight of the academic year. One of the main themes of the conference focussed on the growing need for food security by the year 2050, which led to some remarkable talks in the morning plenary and keynote sessions. I was most interested to hear about how new crops were being developed to tackle today’s agricultural problems. In particular, research presented by Martin Dickman explained how using the cell’s programmed cell death mechanism could be manipulated to engineer resistance to pathogens and stress in banana and sugarcane. The poster session was held on Wednesday evening where I was able to talk through my work with a number of interested people, which enabled me to make some valuable contacts for the future. On Thursday evening the conference dinner was held where delegates were provided with traditional Chinese food and entertainment.
Highlights were the face changers and contortionists.
Rob Jackson University of Reading, UK
here were a number of notable talks at the meeting – one was Cyril Zipfel’s, which was so popular it was impossible to get into the room and people were standing in the hallway! Matt Templeton gave a very nice overview on how the kiwi industry in New Zealand and around the world is under threat from a highly virulent form of Pseudomonas syringae pv. actinidae. This elegant work used genomic analysis to show the evolution of different strains of the pathovar – this work has just been published in PLoS Pathogens. The plant pathogenic bacteria session gave a more focussed overview on bacterial diseases. Just when you thought you couldn’t delete any more effector genes from DC3000, Alan Collmer’s lab deleted six more “potential” effectors to enable them to find HopAD1. This effector causes cell death in Nicotiana benthamiana and is revealed only after deletion of 28 other effector genes including avrPtoB. Caitlyn Allen discussed data suggesting that nitrogen cycling in bacteria are used to generate energy during Ralstonia colonisation of xylem vessels and this has knock on effects on plant resistance. Teresa Coutinho presented data showing how Xanthomonas are host jumping between sugarcane crops and Eucalyptus, highlighting the importance of non-agricultural hosts in shaping pathogen evolution. Fay Newberry University of Reading, UK I’d been told that these events would be really different because of the difference in delegate numbers but I hadn’t realised how different they would be.
The 11th International Epidemiology Workshop covered a wide range of topics from mathematical modelling to agronomical practices and were extremely interesting. Each talk was followed by ample time for questions and discussions. The talking was mainly done by the more experienced researchers in the group but there was constant encouragement – bordering on badgering! – to try and get the PhD students and younger researchers interacting.
As a new researcher it was a good experience for me to listen to the flow of discussion, to hear what the main themes in epidemiological research are at the moment and to hear professions interacting with each other.
This doesn’t happen in front of me very often in my own university. Only one discussion session really got the younger members interacting and, unfortunately, that happened on the last day.
The session leader introduced the topic and then asked for discussion in groups of four to six with a single member feeding back after a fixed time. The noise level in the room raised dramatically – a sure sign that discussion was in progress. In fact, it was difficult to call everyone back ‘to order’! Maybe that style of discussion should have been introduced earlier in the two and a half day meeting. I received fantastic feedback on my poster from a large number of experienced researchers and other PhD students. There was some praise to keep my confidence levels up but mainly just honest discussion. The ideas have kept me busy since my return and re-energised my enthusiasm for my project. ICPP 2013 was very different. This was a huge congress that took place in a purpose built conference centre. Even so, the professionals running the centre could have done a better job. The catering, in particular, was pretty poor. Refreshments at break times never seemed to feature hot tea or coffee and the fruit and cake pieces were gone long before everyone reached the tables. There were some really interesting talks but these were arranged in half-day groups on related topics so I found myself wishing I could be in three rooms at once for some topics while I wasn’t particularly interested in anything at other times. That did drive me outside of my immediate areas of interest, though, so maybe that was the point. The single poster session was a disappointment. It was scheduled for 6. 00pm when everyone was tired and hungry. There were literally hundreds of posters and it was hard to find the topics you were interested in. There was no way you could see them all even if you had devoted every break to walking about the two poster halls. I received very little feedback – mainly because people didn’t attend.
Students put a tremendous amount of thought and time into creating a good impression with their posters. It seemed a shame that many were not rewarded with the kind of feedback that I had received the week before. For me, the best part of ICPP 2013 was being able to meet researchers from other countries who are working in the same areas as I am. Being able to ask questions of researchers whose papers you follow is a rare treat. Overall – after the two events – I think what I will remember most is the encouragement and support so willingly and freely offered from experienced researchers to people taking their first steps in a research career. It is a wonderful thing that the BSPP is able to set money aside to enable students to interact with other researchers at these events.
Robert Saville East Malling Research, UK
The tree fruit diseases session kicked off with several talks on canker and trunk diseases in fruit crops. José Ramón Úrbez-Torres opened the session with a historical resume of grape vine canker disease biology and epidemiology and the subsequent development of effective chemical, biological and cultural management strategies for their control.
The following presentations described work on bacterial canker (Pseudomonas syringae pv. actinidiae) of kiwi fruit in Italy, Valsa mali canker on apple in China and European canker (Neonectria galligena) on apple in the Netherlands. In this talk Marcel Wenneker explained the difficulties of working with this complex disease on a perennial host, in particular the need for reliable phenotyping for the identification of resistance markers, an important component in any integrated disease management programme. Finally Marcel emphasised the importance of international cooperation in the development and implementation of integrated control strategies. The knowledge of a pathogen’s epidemiology applied to an effective disease control strategy in the field was perhaps best illustrated by Guido Schnabel who presented a paper on a novel cultural approach to managing Armillaria root rot diseases. Guido has shown that planting trees on raised beds and subsequently excavating the root crown after two growing seasons, thus raising the vulnerable root crown away from the infection source, results in up to 100% reduction in the mortality rate caused by Armillaria. The conference as a whole was a great experience with the science, entertainment and the cuisine offering great inspiration to me.
Xiaolei Jin University of Hertfordshire, UK
I enjoyed Beijing 2013 as my first ICPP conference and it was a great opportunity to present my research on integrated control of strawberry powdery mildew. I was very excited to see work presented by J. J. Wang about proteomic analysis in muskmelon fruits treated with sodium silicate, which related with my work. The work indicates that defence response, redox homeostasis proteins and enzymes associated with energy metabolism were involved in induced resistance of muskmelon fruits by Si. In addition, E. Perez et al also presented about control of Podosphaera aphanis in strawberry plants by using potassium salts and essential oils from a Uruguayan plant, which indicated that the treatment was able to significantly reduce spore germination, compare to the untreated control. Thus, it is good to develop a control strategy based on the use of safe molecules and reduces fungicide use. The congress also had a very interesting session on ‘Nanotechnology for Plant Health’, which is a potential novel application for defence against plant disease in agriculture.
Avice Hall University of Hertfordshire, UK
For me, ICPP was both phytopathologically stimulating and very enjoyable.
The plenary sessions, including those on plant pathology in a globalised economy, the Food Security session, the lecture by Fen Beed, Jacqueline Fletcher speaking on HPOPs, and Abraham Gamliel on using a systems approach to plant disease control were all memorable.
Choosing between concurrent sessions was difficult but I enjoyed some of the epidemiology sessions, and the final morning on teaching plant pathology.
The session ‘Nanotechnology for plant health’ was very informative as well as linking into some of my own work. I also enjoyed listening to my former (undergraduate) student Dr Mike Pearson speaking on virus diseases of kiwi fruit. The unexpected treat was the evening session on Edible and Medicinal fungi in the USA and China, a wonderful experience with excellent presentations.
One or two posters were memorable particularly the poster on disease forecasting in Norway all conveniently delivered to the ‘farm gate’ via mobile phone. As a research student in 1968 I attended the 1st Congress of Plant Pathology at Imperial college, received the first edition of the Plant Pathologists pocket book and was inspired to realise the world wide importance of plant pathology.
The Beijing congress proved to me that I am still inspired by the world wide significance of plant pathology even though I am semi-retired!
Olga Badalyan Belarusian State University, Belarus First and foremost I would like to thank the BSPP for the opportunity to present my research on N. benthamiana – P. carotovorum interactions at ICPP Congress in Beijing. The congress included sessions dedicated to all major spheres of modern phytopathology. One of the most interesting sessions (not only in my opinion judging by the overcrowded room) was “Biotechnological application in plant disease control”. Some excellent reports on using components of plant signal chains for transgenic plant creation have been presented. For instance, Cyril Zipfer has shown the importance of new plant pattern recognition receptors, such as EFR (EF-Tu receptor), RP30 of Arabidopsis thaliana, PRRs of grapevines, for creation of stable crops. The report by Martin Dickman on expressing anti-apoptosis genes in banana plant cells in order to prevent Agrobacterium tumefaciens infections was also quite interesting. Masaki Mori has presented his work on identification of the BSR1 cytoplasmatic signal kinase.
BSR1 overexpression in rice conferred resistance to both Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae and Magnaporthe oryzae. In addition George Sundin and Quan Zeng have presented valuable reports on participation of small RNAs (e.g. ArcZ) of blight pathogen Erwinia amylovora in regulation of virulence. It was shown that inactivation of hfq (coding for the chaperone for small RNAs, including ArcZ) as well as arcZ results in mobility decrease. It was also shown that ArcZ negatively regulates translation of FlhDC. At the same time ArcZ positively regulates transcription of flhDC. The most up-to-date information from the Congress on plant PRRs and small RNA regulators is invaluable for my current research.
All of these contributors have expressed their thanks to the BSPP for partially funding their attendance at the Congress, and it just remains for me to thank you for reading their reports, and to alert you to the fact that the 11th ICPP will be in Boston, Massachusetts, USA from July 29 to August 3, 2018.
Matt Dickinson University of Nottingham, UK