Home BIG STORY Odia scientist impresses PM Modi at IRRI in Philippines

Odia scientist impresses PM Modi at IRRI in Philippines


Bhubaneswar: Odisha-born scientist Dr. Kshirod Jena today explained benefits of salt-tolerant rice varieties to Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Manila in Philippines during the latter’s visit to International Rice Research Institute (IRRI).

Jena, a Principal Scientist at IRRI’s Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Biotechnology Division, elaborated about the benefits of the rice varieties which offer great potential to grow rice on almost 7 million hectares of salt-affected areas in India.

Modi later took to microblogging site Twitter and termed his interaction with Jena and other scientists at the IRRI as “a great learning experience”.

Born on February 3, 1953 in Cuttack, Jena did MSc in Genetics and Cytogenetics and PhD in Plant breeding and Genetics in Utkal University.

His current focus of research is on breaking yield barrier of rice using genomics strategy and transferring novel genes from wild Oryza species for biotic and abiotic stress resistance into rice.

Jena’s research aims to identify novel resistance genes to pests and diseases such as brown planthopper (BPH), blast and bacterial leaf blight. His research goal is to develop new rice varieties by using newly discovered yield enhancing genes and modern plant breeding methods, and share the new breeding lines/products with scientists to improve indica rice lines.

He is using genomics strategies to incorporate yield enhancing traits and genes for improving indica rice plant architecture to enhance yield potential.