Tentative title: Encyrtidae in south America, Diversity and Associated hosts

DANIEL ALEJANDRO AQUINO Dr. Daniel Alejandro Aquino, Lic. in Biology (Zoology) in the Faculty of Natural Science of La Plata, PhD. in Natural Science in the same Faculty. Actually Researcher in CONICET in the Parasitological Center and Vectors (CEPAVE) and Professor in Entomology in the Faculty of Natural Science and in Agricultural Zoology in the Faculty of Agricultural Science and Forestry.

Tentative title:

Microbe-mediated host location of insect parasitoids in a tritrophic perspective.

Insect parasitoids are key components of terrestrial trophic webs and strongly contribute to the ecosystem service of pest control. Parasitoids face the challenge to locate their hosts in complex environments. In order to find their hosts, parasitoids exploit a wide variety of stimuli, among which chemical cues – called infochemicals or semiochemicals – play a major role. In the last decades, an increasing body of evidence suggests that microorganisms can be “hidden players” mediating host location by parasitoids. For example, microbes associated with plants and herbivores can alter the emission of herbivore-induced plant volatiles which are well-known infochemicals that parasitoids exploit to locate their herbivore hosts. In addition, microbes associated with parasitoids themselves can trigger cascading effects in herbivores and plants that, in turn, affect parasitoids’ foraging decisions. In this talk I summarize the current knowledge about microbe-mediated host location of insect parasitoids taking a tritrophic perspective. I also address the knowledge gaps and the potential of manipulating microbe-mediated host location to improve the efficiency of insect parasitoids in biological control programs.


I am currently an Assistant professor at the Department of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Sciences, University of Palermo, Italy. I am a Former Marie Curie individual fellow at the University of Wageningen, The Netherlands (2016-2017) and former Agreenskills+ fellow at INRAE Montpellier, France (2018). I have a broad interest for insect ecology, plant-insect interaction, chemical ecology and biological pest control. I use natural enemies, especially parasitoids and hyperparasitoids, as model study organisms. I am particularly interested in understanding the role of herbivore induced plant volatiles in terrestrial food webs and the role played by microbes in plant-insect interactions.

Tentative title:
Venturia canescens (Hymenoptera: ichneumonidae) as a model insect for behavioural ecology: from mechanisms to population consequences

Emmanuel Desouhant is a Professor at the University of Lyon, France. He is a specialist in evolutionary and behavioural ecology in insects. His research work focuses on the use of information and decision-making processes in the context of foraging and sexual selection to address, for example, questions on mate choice and kin recognition. He combines experiments in the laboratory and in the field to decipher the mechanisms (physiological and molecular) that underline the behavioural responses in animals, and to estimate the adaptive value of behaviours. His research focuses mainly on parasitoid and phytophagous insects.

Tentative Title: Landscape simplification, biological invasions and climate change: major threats to coccinellid assemblages in central Chile. AUDREY A. GREZ
Full professor, Universidad de Chile
Ecologist, interested in the conservation of biodiversity in agroecosystems, with particular emphasis on insects and the processes in which they are involved. Her work is done through field, laboratory and Citizen Science studies. She is currently working on threats to coccinellid conservation, such as land use change, biological invasions, and climate change. The only woman who has received the award from the Chilean Society of Ecology (SOCECOL) (2016) for her contribution to the development of the discipline and this scientific society.

Tentative title: Host regulation by parasitic wasps as part of multitrophic interactions

Professor of Entomology at the University of Napoli Federico II (Italy) and Visiting Professor at Newcastle University (UK), in 1989 he received a PhD in Entomology at the University of Napoli Federico II, and, from 1989 to 1991, he was research associate at the Department of Entomology, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, U.S.A., in Brad Vinson’s lab. The study of the molecular physiology of insect multitrophic interactions is at the core of his research interests, along with biotechnologies for insect control that can be developed based on this knowledge. His work particularly focuses on insect immunity and immunosuppression strategies by parasitoids and pathogens, and on how biotic and abiotic environmental stressors can alter insect immunocompetence. For his contribution to this research area, he was awarded the Cozzarelli Prize by the National Academy of Sciences of USA. He currently serves as President of the Italian National Academy of Entomology. He is EMBO member, seats in the Council for International Congresses of Entomology, and is editor of “Journal of Insect Physiology”.

Tentative title: Does the “insect apocalypse” endanger biological control?


Bill earned his Ph.D. in Entomology at University of Kentucky before a stint as a USDA Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Zoology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Bill currently is a Professor of Agroecology and Systems Biology in the Department of Entomology at the University of Georgia. The Snyder lab is interested in links between farm biodiversity, natural pest control, and environmental and human health.