Microbe-insect-plant interactions

The banana weevil borer Cosmopolites sordidus is a worldwide pest of banana plantations. It can carry the phytopathogen Fusarium oxysporum an ascomycete fungus that causes Fusarium wilt in bananas. We study the interaction between the weevil, Fusarium and bananas.

PhD student Diego Zanardo Gallan wants to unravel the chemical cues emitted by Fusurium infected and uninfected banana plants that attract/ repel weevils carrying or not the fungus. Furthermore, he studies the natural microbiome of the weevils.