Agricultural production and food security are increasingly under pressure due to a sharply rising human population. Increased production is however constrained by several, in part human-caused, factors such as climate change, erosion and degradation, and pests. To secure a healthy globe with food for all, we urgently need to innovate agrifood and find knowledge-intensive techniques that support the sustainable use and restoration of natural resources, and embrace and foster the complexity of agro-ecosystems instead of molding it to only fit our short-term needs only. I have a keen interest in contributing to this by delivering knowledge and techniques that can selectively remove pest insects from production systems, without affecting beneficial organisms or the environment.
As a chemical ecologist, much of my research aims to find signaling molecules which are selectively attractive or repellent for pest insects, and harness these in novel control techniques with minimal to no negative impact to the surrounding. Pests include flies, mosquitoes and moths. My research includes fundamental studies to understand the inner workings of sensory systems of pests, and a keen interest to accelerate this knowledge into the application, with a particular interest in invasive species biology. To facilitate finding innovations against pest insects, we work on an olfactomics platform (www.tephri.org). This platform aims to create an open-access database of sensory responses of insects to volatiles from where researchers can extract potential attractants and repellents that are selective for defined taxa.
My research on the invasive fruit fly D. suzukii entails both fundamental and applied (formulation, field) studies and is financed through SLF, Sparbanken Stiftlsen, Ekhaga Stiftelsen, FORMAS, and SLU.
1994 MSc Entomology and in Theoretical Production Ecology, Wageningen University.
2002 PhD In Entomology and Evolutionary Biology
2002-2006 Postdoc and Marie Curie fellow, SLU, Sweden; 2006-2012 Assistant Professor in Chemical Ecology; 2012-present Associate Professor SLU, Sweden2006
Expertise: sensory physiology, neuroanatomy, behavior, chemical ecology, and insect ecology and associated tools
Click here to see a complete list of publications. See also here for more information and here other engagements:
Biasazin TD, Larsson Herrera S, Kimbokota F, Dekker T 2018. Translating olfactomics into attractants: shared volatiles provides attractive bridges for polyphagy in fruit flies. Ecol Letters, DOI: 10.1111/ele.13172.
Figueroa I, Bautista V, Larsson Herrera S, Walter A, Ortuño Casto N, Tasin M, Dekker T 2018. The potential of locally sustainable food baits and traps against the Mediterranean fruit fly Ceratitis capitata in Bolivia. Pest Management Science. https://doi.org/10.1002/ps.5286