After the Second World War much entomological research was undertaken from the concept that most pest problems caused by insects could be solved by application of insecticides.
Chemical control was considered cheap, effective and safe. It is now realized that this approach was non-sustainable. Already in the early days of chemical control the Laboratory of Entomology choose a different approach for its research, with emphasis on alternative methods of control. Initially the research focused on insect physiology i.e. hormonal regulation of insect development and resulted in the discovery of insect growth regulators as modern and selective control agents. Subsequently much work was done (and continues to be done) on the physiology of insect/plant interactions and the ecology of parasite/host and predator/prey interactions. In the last decade research on arthropod vectors of human and animal diseases complemented the research at the Laboratory.
The Laboratory of Entomology conducts fundamental and applied research. Fundamental scientific research concerns 5 topics:
- Host plant selection by herbivorous insects and mites;
- Chemical communication between plants and carnivorous insects and mites;
- Foraging behaviour of predators and parasitoids;
- Population dynamics of parasitoids
- Evolutionary ecology of asexual reproduction in insects.
Applied research is narrowly associated with the fundamental research, and includes the following topics:
- Development of biological and integrated pest management in greenhouses, orchards and field crops;
- Mechanisms of host-plant resistance;
- Biological and integrated control of pests and vectors in the tropics
Attraction of mosquitoes to primate odours and implications for zoonotic Plasmodium transmissionMedical and Veterinary Entomology 34 (2020)1. - ISSN 0269-283X - p. 17 - 26.
Mosquito attractantsOctrooinummer: WO2019186123, verleend: 2019-12-05.
Latitudinal diversity of biting midge species within the Obsoletus group across three habitats in EuropeMedical and Veterinary Entomology 33 (2019)3. - ISSN 0269-283X - p. 420 - 426.
Species-specific alterations in Anopheles mosquito olfactory responses caused by Plasmodium infectionScientific Reports 9 (2019)1. - ISSN 2045-2322
Community analysis of the abundance and diversity of biting midge species (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) in three European countries at different latitudes
The effect of essential oils of tagetes minuta and tithonia diversifolia on on-host behaviour of the brown ear tick rhipicephalus appendiculatusLivestock Research for Rural Development 30 (2018)6. - ISSN 0121-3784
Anopheles coluzzii and Anopheles quadriannulatus olfactory gene expression
Chemosensory gene expression in olfactory organs of the anthropophilic Anopheles coluzzii and zoophilic Anopheles quadriannulatus
Chemosensory gene expression in olfactory organs of the anthropophilic Anopheles coluzzii and zoophilic Anopheles quadriannulatusBMC Genomics 18 (2017). - ISSN 1471-2164 - 14 p.
Variation in host preferences of malaria mosquitoes is mediated by skin bacterial volatilesMedical and Veterinary Entomology 31 (2017)3. - ISSN 0269-283X - p. 320 - 326.