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Experiences and Message from JSPS Fellows

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Dr. Md. Rafiqul Islam




Pre-fellowship host institute

Seoul National University

Host institute

The University of Tokyo

Host researcher

Dr. Toru Fujiwara

Fellowship period

2007/11/27 - 2009/11/26

Research field

Agricultural Sciences


Research title

Molecular mechanisms of boron transport in wheat and generation of boron-stress tolerant plants


The reason for choosing Japan to conduct research

Japan is well advanced in science and technology. Highly standard research works are being conducted in Japan. I have got a very good impression about Japan from my senior colleagues. I was impressed with some research articles of my present host researcher in Japan while I was doing my Ph.D in Seoul National University, Korea. As an Associate Professor of the Department of Soil Science of Bangladesh Agricultural University, I need to develop my career. So I have chosen Japan to do some quality research in my field.

Research achievements

My initial proposed plan was to elucidate wheat boron transporters but it was reported just after my arrival to Japan. So my present focus is to investigate the mechanisms of arsenate transport in rice. It is assumed that arsenate is taken by plants through phosphate transporters. Of 13 rice phosphate transporters (OsPTs), I am progressing with 4 such as OsPT1, OsPT2, OsPT4 and OsPT8 based on their expression in rice roots under Pi starvation. I have already generated Promoter GUS plants for OsPTs for checking their tissue specific expression. I have also generated RNAi plants of OsPTs for evaluating arsenate tolerance and uptake of knockdown plants. To investigate the subcellular localization of OsPTs, I have constructed GFP fusion proteins which will be transiently expressed in protoplasts isolated from rice callus. I have also screened T-DNA taglines for OsPT1 and OsPT2 to examine arsenate tolerance and uptake behavior of knockout plants.

Advice to new fellows

It is better to learn Japanese Language as much as possible to have the life in Japan convenient. Japanese are very kind, friendly and cooperative. So it will be good to make friendship with them for creating a nice environment for living and research. We should also respect their culture.