Conference programme

We are excited to be hosting this diverse programme of accomplished researchers, please note the programme is developing and may change. As this is now a hybrid conference the majority of speakers will be attending in person, however some may join via video link.

Plant growing in hydroponic foam

Back to event home

Monday 4th April

Conference Opening

Time Session Speaker
9:00 - 13:00 Registration open  
12:00 - 13:00 Welcome refreshments served  
13:00 - 13:10 Opening Session Prof. Duncan Cameron, University of Sheffield, UK
13:10 - 13:25 Conference overview Prof. Jurriaan Ton, University of Sheffield, UK
13:25 - 13:30 Welcoming statements from IOBC Prof. Victor Flors, Jaume I University, Spain

Theme 1: Perception and Signalling

Chair: Mike Roberts

Time Session Speaker

Plants synthesize N-hydroxypipecolic acid to implement systemic acquired resistance and defense priming

Prof. Jürgen Zeier, Germany

14:00 -14:30 The role of chemical messengers in transmission of stress-triggered calcium waves Dr. Christine Faulkner John Innes Institute, UK

Abstract 1: The ER membrane as a central regulator of plant immune priming.

Roland Schwarzenbacher, Durham University

14:45 -15:00 Abstract 2: TIR-NBS-LRR protein MRT1 is regulated by a miRNA and participates in Arabidopsis defence responses to spider mite infestation Irene Rosa-Diaz, CBGP, UPM – INIA
15:00-15:30 Refreshment Break  
15:30 -16:00 Self-DNA and its multiple roles in damaged-self recognition: from plants to humans Prof. Martin Heil CINVESTAV, Mexico
16:00 -16:30 First glimpse of a SUMO code in defence signalling and priming Prof.  Ari Sadanandom University of Durham, UK 
16:30-16:45 Abstract 3: Extracellular DNA as a primary damage-associated molecular pattern (DAMP) induces plant resistance against pathogens and pests Leila Rassizadeh, Jaume I University
16:45-17:00 Abstract 4: The impact of elevated CO2 on mature oak and seedling defence against powdery mildew Mark Raw, University of Birmingham
17:00-19:00 Welcome buffet dinner & drinks  

Tuesday 5th April

Theme 2: Transcriptional control

Chair: Estrella Luna Diez

Time Session Speaker
8:30- 9:00 Welcome tea/coffee served  
9:00- 9:30 Dynamic ubiquitination controls transcription dynamics in immunity Dr. Steve Spoel, University of Edinburgh, UK
9:30 - 10:00 Multi-omic insights into ash dieback disease

Dr. Andrea Harper, University of York, UK

10:00 -10:15 Abstract 1: Photoperiod stress primes/protects Arabidopsis plants against pathogen attack Anne Cortleven, FU Berlin - Institute of Biology/Applied Genetics
10:15-10:30 Abstract 2: The impact of harvest on immune gene activation and pathogen resistance Lindsay Williams, University of Edinburgh
10:30-10:50 Refreshment break  
10:50 - 11:20  Understanding the language of plant hormones instructing plants how to conquer pests and diseases Prof. Saskia CM Van Wees, Utrecht University, The Netherlands
11:20 -11:50 Dynamics, mechanisms, and evolution of a highly resilient plant immune signaling network

Prof. Fumiaki Katagiri, University of Minnesota, USA

11:50 - 12:05

Abstract 3: Dissecting plant defence-growth trade-off established upon spider mite infestation

Estrella Santamaria, Centro de Biotecnologia y Genomica de Plantas (upm-inia

12:05 - 12:20 Abstract 4: Transcriptional regulators IBM2 and EDM2 act as suppressors of salicylic acid-dependant defence response genes in Arabidopsis Dr. Leonardo Furc, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology
12:20-13:20 Lunch Break  

Tuesday 5th April

Theme 3: Cell wall immunity

Chair: Saskia van Wees

Time Session Speaker
13:20-13:50 Plant immunity and disease resistance responses triggered by cell wall derived signals

Prof. Antonio Molina

Centro de Biotecnología y Genómica de Plantas (CBGP, UPM-INIA/CSIC), Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM)

13:50-14:20 From molecule to crop protection - elucidating the role of callose biosynthesis in pathogen defence

Dr. Christian Voigt 

BASF, Belgium

Tuesday 5th April

Theme 4: Epigenetic regulation

Chair: Jurriaan Ton

Time Session Speaker

Don’t let it get under you bark: Exploring mechanism of defence priming in Norway Spruce

Dr. Melissa Mageroy, NIBIO, Norway

14:50-15:05 Abstract 1: DNA demethylation and ARGONAUTE1 are required for long-lasting jasmonic acid induced resistance Sam Wilkinson, University of Sheffield
15:05 - 15:35 Refreshment Break  

15:35- 16:05

Active DNA demethylation shapes immune responsiveness and ensures proper WRKY-DNA binding at TE boundaries Dr. Lionel Navarro, IBENS, France 
16:05 -16:45

Epigenetics in plant-nematode interactions: preparing for battle in the same and future generations

Anikó Meijer, Ghent University
16:45-17:00 Abstract 2: Long-lasting defence priming by β-aminobutyric acid in tomato is marked by genome-wide changes in DNA methylation. Mike Roberts, Lancaster University
17:00-17:15 Abstract 3: Epigenetics of long-lasting post harvest resistance in tomato Katie Stevens, University of Birmingham
17:15-17:30 Abstract 4: Using an estradiol-inducible AtROS1 construct to establish the role of DNA demethylation patterning in epigenetically-controlled induced resistance. Adam Parker, University of Sheffield
17:30-19:00 Poster session with drinks  

Wednesday 6th April

Theme 5: Role of soil microbiome in plant immunity

Chair: Victor Flors

Time Session Speaker
8:00 - 8:30 Welcome tea/coffee served  
8:30 - 9:00

Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi take their place between plants and bacteria

Prof. Paola Bonfante, University of Torino, Italy 
9:00-9:30 Translating biological knowledge into efficacious tools for agriculture

Dr. Sjoerd van der Ent, Koppert Biological Systems

9:30-9:45 Abstract 1: Investigating the transferability of disease-suppressing soil microbiomes to protect tomato Nancy Muringai, University of Sheffield
9:45 - 10:00 Abstract 2: Metabolomic and proteomic approaches to understand Mycorrhiza-IR against Botrytis cinerea infection Paloma Sánchez-Bel, Universitat Jaume I
10:00- 10:15 Abstract 3: Phages: biocontrol agents of the major plant pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum Sara Franco Ortega, University of York
10:15-10:30 Abstract 4: Beauveria bassiana-tomato interaction: a snapshot of molecular mechanisms regulating host growth promotion and increased defense Silvia Proietti, University of Tuscia
10:30-10:50 Refreshment break  
10:50 - 11:20 Plant responsiveness to soil microbial feedbacks Prof. Klaus Schlaeppi, University of Basel, Switzerland

Wednesday 6th April

Theme 6: Phenotyping quantitative disease resistance and induced resistance

Chair: Jurriaan Ton

Time Session Speaker
11:20 - 11:50

Potential of hyperspectral imaging to detect plant diseases and identify plant resistance responses

Dr. Matheus Thomas Kuska, Pflanzenschutzdienst, Germany
11:50 - 12:20 Using plant disease phenomics to quantify costs and benefits of priming agents Dr. Stephen Rolfe, University of Sheffield, UK
12:20 - 12:35 Abstract 1: Optimising the costs-benefit balance of induced resistance by chemical agents in tomato and lettuce using hyperspectral imaging. Mustafa Yassin, Department of Biosciences The University of Sheffield
12:35-12:50 Absract 2: High-throughput phenotyping and enzymatic activity profiling of BABA- and phosphite-induced potato plants Murilo Sandroni, SLU
12:50 - 17:00 Excursion to Chatsworth House with afternoon tea Link
12:50-17:00 For those not attending the trip to Chatsworth this is free time to explore Sheffield  
19:00 - 00:00 Gala Dinner at Sheffield City Hall Location details here

Thursday 7th April

Theme 7: Tri-trophic and community interactions

Chair: Melissa Mageroy

Time Session Speaker
9:00 - 9:30

Welcome tea/coffee served

9:30 - 10:00

Priming direct and indirect antiherbivore defense by  root mutualistic microbes

Dr. Ainhoa Martinez-Medina, IRNASA-CSIC, Spain
10:00 - 10:30

Insect egg depositions prime plant defence against larval herbivory

Prof. Monika Hilker, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
10:30 - 10:45 Abstract 1: A root mutualistic fungus triggers programed cell death in tomato plants upon leaf herbivory Francisco Javier Colina Ruiz, Institute of Natural Resources and Agrobiology of Salamanca, Spanish National Research Council (IRNASA-CSIC)
10:45-11:00 Abstract 2: Systemic signalling in mycorrhizal and plant-herbivore interactions Ming Zeng, German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig
11:00-11:30  Refreshment break  
11:30 - 12:00  Plant response to the third trophic level: An underestimated interplay shaping multitrophic interactions

Prof. Christelle Robert, University of Bern, Switzerland

Q&A with Paul Himmighofen

12:00 - 12:15 Abstract 3: Microbe-induced aphid suppression across variable biotic and abiotic environments Dr Sharon Zytynska, University of Liverpool
12:15-12:30 Abstract 4: Can we consider neighbors plants as biocontrol agents?

Pelissier Rémi, Inrae-Supagro

12:30 - 13:15 Lunch  

Thursday 7th April

Theme 8: Past, present and future of induced resistance research

Chair: Estrella Luna Diez/Mike Roberts

Time Session Speaker
13:15 - 13:45 Defense priming: emergence – establishment – application Prof. Uwe Conrath, RWTH Germany
13:45 - 14:15 Microbe-Induced Resistance: Are we ready? Dr. Maria Pozo CSIC, Spain 
14:15 - 14:30 Closing session with highlights and presentation/poster awards for postdocs/students Dr. Estrella Luna Diez and Dr. Mike Roberts

Flagship institutes

The University’s four flagship institutes bring together our key strengths to tackle global issues, turning interdisciplinary and translational research into real-world solutions.