Hungary / France

Eva Kondorosi

2018 Balzan Prize for Chemical Ecology

For her important contributions to chemical ecology by her groundbreaking studies of the molecular biology of the symbiosis between legume plants and nitrogen-fixing bacteria, including the identification of nodulation genes and Nod factor family components, expression of nodulation genes by flavonoids, and cell cycle regulation and bacteroid differentiation during the establishment of the symbiosis.

Biographical and Bibliographical Data

Eva Kondorosi, born on 22 March 1948 in Budapest, is a Hungarian and French citizen.
She has been Research Professor and Head of the Symbiosis and Functional Genomics Unit at the Biological Research Centre of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged since 2012 and Directeur de Recherche Emérite CNRS at the Institut de Biologie Intégrative de la Cellule, UMR 9198, CNRS, Gif-sur-Yvette since 2013. Eva Kondorosi has been a member of the Scientific Council of the European Research Council since 2013 and its Vice President since 2017. She is also a member of numerous national or international learned societies, such as the European Molecular Biology Organisation, the US National Academy of Sciences, the Academia Europaea, the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, the French Agricultural Academy, the German National Academy of Sciences (Leopoldina) and the European Academy of Microbiology.
She earned her MSc in Biology (1971) and her PhD in Genetics and Biochemistry (1973) from the L. Eötvös University in Budapest.
She was a postdoc at the Max-Planck-Institut für Züchtungsforschung (Cologne) and visiting scholar at the University of Sussex, Harvard and Cornell Universities. She is the founding director of the BAYGEN Institute, which is now part of the Biological Research Centre of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in Szeged. Eva Kondorosi is also a founding member of the Institut des Sciences Végétales CNRS in Gif-sur-Yvette. For her original discoveries she received several awards, including the Széchenyi and the IS-MPMI awards in 2012.

Among her most important publications we would mention:

with Kereszt A, Mergaert P, Montiel J, Endre G. Impact of plant peptides on symbiotic nodule development and functioning. Front Plant Sci. 2018 Jul 17; 9: 1026.

with Montiel J, Downie JA, Farkas A, Bihari P, Herczeg R, Balint B, Mergaert P, Kereszt A. Morphotype of bacteroids in different legumes correlates with the number and type of symbiotic NCR peptides. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2017 May 9; 114{19): 5041-5046.

with Nagymihály M, Veluchamy A, Györgypal Z, Ariel F, Jégu T, Benhamed M, Szücs A, Kereszt A, Mergaert P. Ploidy-dependent changes in the epigenome of symbiotic cells correlate with specific patterns of gene expression. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2017 Apr 25; 114(17): 4543-4548.

with Wang Q, Yang S, Liu J, Terecskei K, Abraham E, Gombar A, Domonkos A, Szücs A, Körmöczi P, Wang T, Fodor L, Mao L, Fei Z, Kalo P, Kereszt A, Zhu H. Host-secreted antimicrobial peptide enforces symbiotic selectivity in Medicago truncatula. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2017 Jun 27; 114(26): 6854-6859.

with Horvath B, Domonkos A, Kereszt A, Szücs A, Abraham E, Ayaydin F, Boka K, Chen Y, Murray JD, Udvardi MK, Kalo P. Loss of the nodule-specific cysteine rich peptide, NCR169, abolishes symbiotic nitrogen fixation in the Medicago truncatula dnf7 mutant. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2015 Dec 8; 112(49): 15232-15237.

with Dürgo H, Klement E, Hunyadi-Gulyas E, Szücs A, Kereszt A, Medzihradszky K. Identification of nodule-specific cysteine-rich plant peptides in endosymbiotic bacteria. Proteomics. 2015 Jul; 15(13): 2291-2295.

with Maróti G, Downie JA. Plant cysteine-rich peptides that inhibit pathogen growth and control rhizobial differentiation in legume nodules. Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2015 Aug; 26: 57-63.

with Maróti G. Nitrogen-fixing Rhizobium-legume symbiosis: are polyploidy and host peptide-governed symbiont differentiation general principles of endosymbiosis? Front Microbiol. 2014 Jun 30; 5: 326.

with Farkas A, Maróti G, Dürgö H, Györgypal Z, Lima RM, Medzihradszky KF, Kereszt A, Mergaert P. Medicago truncatula symbiotic peptide NCR247 contributes to bacteroid differentiation through multiple mechanisms. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2014 Apr 8; 111(14): 5183-5188.

with Mergaert P, Kereszt A. A paradigm for endosymbiotic life: cell differentiation of Rhizobium bacteria provoked by host plant factors. Annu Rev Microbiol. 2013; 67: 611-628.

with Kereszt A, Mergaert P, Maróti G. Innate immunity effectors and virulence factors in symbiosis. Curr Opin Microbiol. 2011 Feb; 14(1): 76-81.

with van de Velde W, Zehirov G, Szatmari A, Debreczeny M, Ishihara H, Kevei Z, Farkas A, Mikulass K, Nagy A, Tiricz H, Satiat-Jeune Maitre B, Alunni B, Bourge M, Kucho K-I, Abe M, Kereszt A, Maroti G, Uchiumi T, Mergaert P. Plant peptides govern terminal differentiation of bacteria in symbiosis. Science 2010 Feb 26; 327: 1122-1126.

with Vanstraelen M, Baloban M, Da Ines O, Cultrane A, Lammens T, Boudolf V, Brown SE, De Veylder L, Mergaert P. APC/C-CCS52A complexes contrai meristem maintenance in the Arabidopsis root. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2009 Jul 14; 106{28): 11806-11811.

with Mergaert P, Uchiumi T, Alunni B, Evanno G, Cheron A, Catrice O, Mausset AE, Barloy-Hubler F, Galibert F, Kondorosi A. Eukaryotic control on bacterial cell cycle and differentiation in the Rhizobium-legume symbiosis. Proc Nati Acad Sci USA. 2006 Mar 28; 103(13): 5230-5235.

with Tarayre S, Vinardell JM, Cebolla A, Kondorosi A. Two classes of the Cdh1-type activators of the anaphase-promoting complex in plants: novel functional domains and distinct regulation. Plant Cell 2004 Feb; 16(2): 422-434.

with Vinardell JM, Fedorova E, Cebolla A, Kevei Z, Horvath G, Kelemen Z, Tarayre S, Roudier F, Mergaert P, Kondorosi A. Endoreduplication mediated by the anaphase-promoting complex activator CCS52A is required for symbiotic cell differentiation in Medicago truncatula nodules. Plant Cell 2003 Sep; 15(9): 2093-2105.

with Mergaert P, Nikovics K, Kelemen Z, Maunoury N, Vaubert D, Kondorosi A. A novel family in Medicago truncatula consisting of more than 300 nodule-specific genes coding for small, secreted polypeptides with conserved cysteine motifs. Plant Physiol. 2003 May; 132(1): 161-173.

with Schultze M, Quiclet-Sire B, Virelizer H, Glushka JN, Endre G, Géro SD, Kondorosi A. Rhizobium meliloti produces a family of sulfated lipooligosaccharides exhibiting different degrees of plant host specificity. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1992 Jan 1; 89(1): 192-196.

with Horvath B, John M, Schmidt J, Török I, Györgypal Z, Barabas I, Wieneke U, Schell J, Kondorosi A. Organization, structure and symbiotic function of Rhizobium meliloti nodulation genes determining host specificity for alfalfa. Cell. 1986 Aug 1; 46(3): 335-343.

with Banfalvi Z, Kondorosi A. Physical and genetic analysis of a symbiotic region of Rhizobium meliloti: identification of nodulation genes. Mol Gen Genet 1984; 193: 445-452.

For further information:

Insert your email address here to sign up for our newsletter with all the latest updates on the International Balzan Prize Foundation .

By subscribing, I confirm that I have read and understand the General Terms and Conditions of EU Regulation 2016/679, in particular with regard to my rights, and hereby consent to the processing of my personal in the manner and for the purposes indicated therein.
Fondazione Internazionale Premio Balzan