7月7日に来日したCyprian Osinde さんが岡山大学資源植物科学研究所・Galis Ivan 教授のもとで行った研究活動について報告いたします。
Cyprian Osinde’s stay at IPSR
In July 2015, we welcomed Cyprian Osinde (M.Sc.), a junior lecturer from the Makerere University at IPSR. Cyprian is working in Makerere’s newly formed Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology.
Cyprian stayed in the Group of Plant-Insect Interactions between July-7 and September-4, 2015. During his two-month stay, Cyprian was involved in determination of plant volatile compounds emitted from rice and sorghum plants attacked with herbivorous insects. His objectives were to (1) quantify the volatiles and (2) investigate regulatory mechanisms that determine volatile emissions from these plants. All his experiments were conducted under supervision and close support from the senior JSPS postdoc in the laboratory, Dr. Islam Sobhy.
Cyprian used gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to measure volatiles emitted from sorghum plants after he wounded them or exposed them to herbivores, larvae of Mythimna loreyi. Volatiles from the leaves were fist trapped on a special column filled with volatile sorbent Porapak-Q and after eluting them with dichloromethane, the samples were directly applied to GC-MS. As a result, differential emissions, in terms of amounts and quality, were observed between two sorghum varieties. Moreover, Cyprian and Islam found that herbivory-induced release of volatiles during the day (diurnal emissions), such as linalool emitted from rice plants, is accompanied with an increased expression of corresponding gene in rice, linalool synthase that, therefore directly responds to herbivory-associated signals.
One of the serious sorghum pests, stem borer Ostrinia nubilalis larva in Kurashiki laboratory
Overall, Cyprian learned several, for him, new methods, including RNA extraction from plant samples, cDNA synthesis and running qPCR. He also gained useful insights how to prepare samples and operate GC-MS in the laboratory. These techniques will be employed in his future studies at Makerere University as Cyprian aims admission at his university in Uganda as a new Ph.D. student, supported by the limited technical help and supervision from the IPSR facilities and staff in Japan, respectively. His Ph.D. theme should revolve around sorghum indirect defense mechanisms, aiming identification of strong defense traits in this African crop that will assist development of better protection strategies for growing these plants in the field in the future. In indirect defense, plants emit volatiles upon herbivore attack that recruit natural enemies as bodyguards of plants. We hope that Cyprian’s Ph.D. will become a model case of collaboration between Okayama University and Makerere University in Uganda that will be followed by many others in the near future.
Leisure time after work: Cyprian exploring Japanese sea at Shibukawa beach near Kurashiki (Cyprian, and lab members Kimiaki, Atsushi, and Islam).
This report was compiled by Cyprian’s host professor,