Sergio Molinari

I am a senior scientist at CNR and responsible of the Biochemistry Lab. of IPSP division in Bari. My main research topic is the study of plant immune system mechanisms; in particular, I investigate the processes of resistance induction (SAR, ISR) by treatments of plants with hormones, or with symbiont mycorrhizal microorganisms, or antagonist fungi such as Trichoderma spp. in Solanaceae. Such treatments are intended to be used as a sustainable control strategy within IPM against plant parasitic nematodes and mining insects. This research implies the carrying out of biological assays and molecular tests on the effects of SAR (salicylic acid, and its functional analogs, BTH and INA) and ISR (jasmonic acid, ethylene) activators on plant parasite infestations in relation with dosages, plant age, application method, water stress, soil and environmental conditions. etc. This research is supported by different Projects (CISIA SOS-POM, CNR Project WATER, Dept. Project “Sustainable Agriculture”) funded by CNR and Italian Ministry of School, University and Research. Moreover, I deal with either gene identification or evaluation of factors involved in genetic resistance of Solanaceae against root-knot and cyst nematodes; I also study the mechanisms acting in the selection of the virulent populations developing on resistant plants.
I am one of the two scientific responsible and RUP within the IPSP of Selge Project, co-funded by Apulia Region, “Public Web of Research Labs” which wants to be a tool for the regional Agro-food SMEs in the field of selection, characterization and conservation of plant genomes, and of prevention of the diffusion of economically important and quarantine pests. Therefore, part of my activity is dedicated to the molecular identification, by electrophoresis isozyme patterns, of species and of the intraspecific variability of plant parasitic nematodes.
I published on these research topics 67 papers on International Journals (about 900 citations, H-index 13)
I am a reviewer of projects in industrial research, experimental development, and technology transfer within regional and national applications issued by Italian Ministry, Apulia Region, and Apulia ARTI. I have been included in the reviewers panel of Agro-food section within the Agreement between the Italian Ministry of Economical Development (Mise) and CNR for the evaluation of SME projects funded by the Sustainable Growth Fund.


Articles and book chapters since 2008

  • 2017 - Induction of SA-signaling pathway and ethylene biosynthesis in Trichoderma harzianum-treated tomato plants after infection of the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita - Leonetti P., Zonno M.C., Molinari S., Altomare C. - Plant Cell Reports , 36(4): 621-631
  • 2015 - Systemic acquired resistance activation in Solanaceous crops as a management strategy against root-knot nematodes - Molinari S. - Pest Management Science Issn: 1526-498x Published For Sci By Wiley (Print),
  • 2015 - Immune responses induced by salicylic and jasmonic acids against plant parasites - Molinari S. - Salycilic acid and jasmonic acid - biosynthesis, function and role in plant development - Editor: Nova Science, New York (USA), 1-35
  • 2014 - Manganese superoxide dismutase in Meloidogyne incognita isolates selected for virulence on Mi-1-carrying tomato: gene expression and enzyme activity - Molinari S., Rosso L. - Nematology , 16:249-257
  • 2014 - Resistenza Genetica ai Nematodi: Possibilità, Limitazioni, Prospettive - Greco N., Molinari S. - Nematologia Agraria generale e Applicata,
  • 2014 - How fungi interact with nematode to activate the plant defence response in tomato plants - Leonetti P., Costanza A., Zonno M., Molinari S., Altomare C. - Communications In Agricultural And Applied Biological Sciences , 79: 357-362
  • 2014 - Expression of tomato salicylic acid (SA)-responsive pathogenesis-related genes in Mi-1-mediated and SA-induced resistance to root-knot nematodes - Molinari S., Fanelli E., Leonetti P. - Molecular Plant Pathology , 15:255-264
  • 2014 - Osservazione e Identificazione dei Nematodi e Relative Tecniche - Troccoli A., Molinari S., De Luca F. - Nematologia Agraria generale e Applicata - Editor: Società Italiana di Nematologia, Bari (ITA),
  • 2012 - Quantitative aspects of the interaction between chemical activators of systemic acquired resistance in plants and humic acids - Traversa A., Molinari S., Loffredo E. - Agrochimica , 56:112-119
  • 2012 - Different levels of anti-oxidant enzyme activities in tomato genotypes susceptible and resistant to root-knot nematodes - Abd-elgawad M.M.M., Kabeil S.S.A., Fanelli E., Molinari S. - Nematropica , 42:328-334
  • 2011 - The reproductive potential of the root-knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita is affected by selection for virulence against major resistance genes from tomato and pepper - Djian-Caporalino C., Molinari S., Palloix A., Ciancio A., Fazari A., Marteu N., Ris N., Castagnone-Sereno P. - European Journal Of Plant Pathology , 131: 431-440
  • 2011 - Natural genetic and induced plant resistance, as a control strategy to plant-parasitic nematodes alternative to pesticides - Molinari S. - Plant Cell Reports (Print), 30: 311-323
  • 2011 - New approach of rating pathogen-host suitability between (a)-virulent populations of root-knot nematodes and tomato - Molinari S. - Acta Horticulturae , 914: 257-260
  • 2010 - Superoxide dismutase isoelectric focusing patterns as a tool to differentiate pathotypes of Globodera spp - Molinari S., Greco N., Zouhar M. - Nematology, 12:751-758
  • 2010 - Induction of resistance to root-knot nematodes by SAR elicitors in tomato - Molinari S., Baser N. - Crop Protection , 29:1354-1362
  • 2009 - Antioxidant enzymes in (a)virulent populations of root-knot nematodes - Molinari S. - Nematology, 11:689-697
  • 2008 - Markers of plant resistance to nematodes: classical and molecular strategies - Abd-elgawad M.m., Molinari S. - Nematologia Mediterranea , 36: 3-11
  • 2008 - Salicylic acid as an elicitor of resistance to root-knot nematodes in tomato - Molinari S. - Acta Horticulturae , 789: 119-126
  • 2008 - Salicylic acid acts as a resistance elicitor on tomato seedlings attacked by root-knot nematodes: effect of plant age - Molinari S. - Redia , 91: 73-75