Key Scientific Findings


  • Under AWD treatment, rice plants showed an increased root branching, mostly involving the large lateral roots. The arbuscular mycorrhizal phenotype was nicely maintained, even if the colonization success was slightly more limited than under purely aerobic conditions. Molecular analysis revealed that a phosphate transporter was highly upregulated in AWD plants.

  • GBS and bulk segregant analysis were used to map a major gene for complete nematode resistance to chr 11 by crossing a resistant Sri Lankan cultivar LD24 with an Italian variety Vialone Nano.

  • The GreenRice panel of 240 European accessions was characterized for its salinity tolerance and GWAS used to map candidate genes for salinity tolerance.

  • Field trials carried out at the Ebro Delta in 2016 showed an increase in productivity in mycorrhizal rice plants (30% increase) compared to non-mycorrhizal plants when grown under PFS. Under controlled greenhouse conditions, the mycorrhiza-induced protection against blast infection is dependent on the host genotype. Results on blast resistance in field-grown mycorrhizal rice plants were not conclusive due to a low blast incidence in the 2016 rice cropping season.


Sustainable and environmental friendly rice cultivation systems in Europe is funded by the FACCE-ERA-NET+ on Climate Smart Agriculture.