Current Research Projects:
Parasitic Wasp Physiology, Immunity and Polydnavirus:
Many of our projects involve parasitic wasps (parasitoids) that develop as immatures in or on the bodies of other insects but that are free-living as adults. Parasitoid wasps are among the most species-rich group of organisms on earth. One study area in the lab focuses on understanding how the host’s immune system protects insects from parasitoid invasion and reciprocally, how parasitoids overcome host defenses. This includes the study of microbial symbionts like polydnaviruses that are carried by many parasitoids and that play a key role in suppressing the immune system of host insects.
Mosquito Gut Microbiome
Aphids and Symbiosys