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 Rinalda Proko, a University of Arkansas graduate student in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, conducts research with U of A System Division of Agriculture research faculty. She recently won second place in a national competition for her two-minute video explaining how she is working toward a solution to rice blast disease caused by the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae. The practical application of the research could result in significant increases in crop sustainability for the world's rice and wheat harvests.

Fast facts

•Graduate student explains microbiology research in 2-minute video

•Video wins second place in national competition

•Video can be seen here: http://bit.ly/ProkoVideo

FAYETTEVILLE — If you think complex research at the interface between entomology and plant pathology, as well as cell and molecular biology sounds like a mouthful, try sharing the details in a two-minute video that summarizes your whole effort.

That's exactly what Rinalda Proko did. A University of Arkansas graduate student in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences, Proko conducts research with U of A System Division of Agriculture research faculty.

Proko’s video won second place in the nationally competitive American Society for Cell Biology annual Elevator Pitch competition, building on her earlier success in the U of A Three-Minute Thesis competition. 

In the call for submissions, ASCB encourages graduate research students to explain scientific research so that it's understandable "to everyone - to the public, to your grandmother, to politicians - and do it with flair."

Proko is part of Dr. Martin Egan's fungal cell biology research group in the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, the research arm of the Division of Agriculture. She is working toward a solution to rice blast disease caused by the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae. The practical application of the research could result in significant increases in crop sustainability for the world's rice and wheat harvests.

As seen in the video, Proko estimates the amount of rice that could be recovered by elimination of the disease would be enough to feed more than 60 million people. Proko said defeating the disease she calls a "global cereal killer" would provide more healthy food for the worldwide population.

Visit aaes.uark.edu to learn more about Division of Agriculture research.

 

 

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