Agricultural entomology, acarology and nematology


The Laboratory of Agrozoology is particularly experienced in the research fields of agricultural entomology, acarology and nematology.


Prof. Patrick De Clercq

The research of Patrick De Clercq focuses on the biological and integrated control of arthropod pests in agriculture, with emphasis on the potential of predatory insects (true bugs, ladybirds) and mites (Phytoseiidae) for augmentative biological control. His main interests lie in unravelling the ecology of these beneficial arthropods, developing rearing techniques and associated quality assurance procedures, and weighing the risks and benefits of their use in biological control programmes.


Prof. Thomas Van Leeuwen

As a molecular acarologist and entomologist, the main research interests of Thomas Van Leeuwen center around the physiology, genetics and molecular biology of adaptive mechanisms in the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae and other damaging arthropods in relation to the xenobiotic metabolism and resistance. This entails the study of pesticide mode of action and resistance, as well as mechanisms of adaptation to novel host environments. The latter is focused both on physiological mechanisms of detoxification, as well as on the avoidance of defenses by effectors that modulate plant defenses. The overall aim is to develop pest mitigation strategies by the use and development of tools such as NGS-based high resolution genetic mapping, quantitative transcriptomics and methods of forward and reverse genetics.


Prof. Wim Wesemael

The research of Wim Wesemael focuses on the biology and management of plant-parasitic nematodes and resistance and tolerance screening of vegetables and green manure crops.