These conference reports are written by the beneficiaries of our travel fund
Click here to read more about the fund and apply yourself
The 2nd Asian Congress on Plant Pathology Singapore, June 25-28, 2005
Two hundred and forty delegates from 29 countries attended this congress. Singapore was really a delightful congress venue and the wonderful city, food and great weather made a favorable impression. The scientific programme was very busy: 134 oral presentations in 3 days, plus nearly 116 posters.
The inaugural talk was on the resistance to infection and counter defense responses by cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) presented by Prof. Peter Paulikaitis of Scottish Crop Research institute, UK. He emphasized that most of pathogen-derived resistances are due to an RNA-silencing mechanism. CMV has developed a counter-defense strategy, in which one or more proteins inhibit specific stages of the RNA silencing mechanisms. These counter defense molecules may provide new targets for novel defense strategies.
There was ten different sessions on host pathogen interaction, fungal diseases, virus and viral diseases, biological control, integrated pest management, resistance of plant and resistance breeding, prokaryotic disease, epidemiology and crop loss assessment, post harvest disease and mycotoxins, and nematode disease. Since I have been working on characterization and management of plant viruses in India, I mostly attended the session of virus and viral diseases, which was grouped in three technical sessions each day. The morning session of the first day had five presentations on molecular diagnosis and sequencing information of watermelon mosaic, tobamovirus, TMV and pepper viruses. The second session included presentations about potyviruses from Freesia, banana streak virus, a new important disease of mealybug associated closteroviruses in pineapple and begomoviruses.
On 27 June, the virus session started with lecture of Prof. C. Hiruki of Canada who described a DNA heteroduplex mobility assay for diagnosing phytoplasma at the subgroup level. The other lectures in this session were on sugarcane mosaic, papaya ring spot and Zucchini mosaic virus on cucurbitaceous crops from India and China. In evening there was poster session during which 116 posters were displayed on many different pathological topics. I also presented my poster on ‘Identification of a virus causing mosaic disease in sorghum crops of eastern Uttar Pradesh’, which was appreciated by many plant pathologists. The poster session was very interactive and attended by nearly all the participants.
On the final day, I attended other technical sessions: of Prokaryotic diseases on management of phytoplasma diseases, transmission of phytoplasmas and fungal biocontrol of root knot nematodes on tomato. The congress was ended with closing ceremony on 28th, June 2005 followed by lunch and farewell.
Overall, I very much benefited by meeting experienced plant pathologists from other Asian and western countries. I have been exposed for new methods on characterization of plant pathogen and newly developed management strategies towards plant disease control.
I am really thankful to BSPP for providing the Travel Award to assist me in attending this important meeting, which provided a great opportunity to meet senior experienced plant pathologists for very productive discussions. The experience will be helpful in my future research career. I am proud to be a member of BSPP.
Division of Plant Pathology Sugarcane Research Station
Kunraghat, Gorakhpur-273008 UP, INDIA