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STATE OF ISRAEL I MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT   
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About Institutes Public Relations Technology Transfer Students\International Information Center (Library) Administration
שלח באימייל הדפס
Plant Sciences
Animal Science
Plant Protection
Soil, Water and Environmental Sciences
Postharvest and Food Sciences
Agricultural Engineering
Gilat Center
Newe Ya'ar
Administration
Interdisciplinary Centers
Research Support Services
The Center for Agro-Nanotechnology
Units
Entomology and the Nematology and Chemistry units
Plant Pathology and Weed Research
Administration
Entomology and the Nematology and Chemistry units
Head: Murad Ghanim, Prof.
Staff
The Department of Entomology, Nematology and Chemistry conducts applied and basic research on issues and problems related to agriculture. Its main objective is to solve problems of plant protection that affect the agricultural of Israel, for the benefit of both producers and consumers. The Department's research also aims to improve the rural and urban environment by developing, testing and applying novel pest management strategies that reduce the use of pesticides.

The members of the department conduct research on the ecology and biological control of insect pests and nematodes, including their chemical ecology, physiology, and biochemistry, using modern techniques of chemistry, molecular biology and genomics. The department maintains numerous collaborations with scientists and institutions throughout the world.

Areas of research (research scientist):

  • The role of the insect intestine and environmental microorganisms in plant-insect relations regarding nutrition, stress and behavior. Development of methods of pest hindrance by disruption of plant-insect interactions (Michael Ben-Yosef).
  • Studying molecular mechanisms and nematode's effectors regulating plant response to nematode infection, establish integrated nematode control through developing new friendly biocontrol agent (Sigal Brown).
  • Determining specificity between whiteflies biotypes and virus transmission ability. Determining the contribution of bacterial symbionts to the biology of whiteflies. Monitoring resistance in major pests on a yearly basis (Murad Ghanim).
  • Ecology of Sexual Behavior:  Development of methods to control pests through manipulation of their reproductive system (Ally Harari).
  • Biological control and integrated pest management (IPM) (Roy Kaspi).
  • Plant Mites (Adi Kiot)
  • Fruit Fly Ecology: Establishment of SIT protocols for Tephritidae fruit flies and development of e-traps for these pests (David Nestel).
  • Development of nematode control methods by chemical, biological, physical and cultural means (Yuji Oka).
  • Acarology : Identification, characterization and evaluation of potential predatory mites for conservation biological (Eric Palevsky).
  • The development and use of genome engineering and synthetic biology tools for the identification and control of pest insects (Gur Pines). 
  • Honey bee health: Study the relationship between disease factors and bees physiology as a tool for developing apiculture methods (Hagai Shpigler)
  • Developing ways to help the Honeybee fight the Varroa mite (Varroa destructor). Identification and characterization of Semiochemicals and mechanisms involved in host and partner recognition of arthropods and mites (broad mite-Polyphagotarsonemus latus, Varroa destructor, Hyalesthes obsoletus; Capnodis tenebrionis; Dacus ciliatus) (Victoria Soroker).
  • Pheromone Chemistry : Pheromone identification of Israeli pest insects, development of methods for pheromone applications and novel slow release devices for pheromone, insect repellents from natural products for "push-pull" control method (Anat Zada).
  • Deciphering multi-trophic interactions among plants/plant pathogens/ arthropod vectors/ natural enemies, and developing symbiont-based control methods (Einat Zchori Fein).

 

Staff members located at the regional centers:


Staff
Researchers
Name
(Surname, First name)
Research Interests /
Job description
Brown Miyara Sigal, Ph.D. A. Studying the role of lipid signals in regulating plant response to plant parasitic nematodes. B. Studying the occurrence of Root Knot Nematode breaking resistance populations on tomato and pepper plants carrying resistance genes. C. Developing new friendly biological control agents toward reducing the damage caused by plant parasitic nematodes.
Ghanim Murad, Prof. The research in my lab focuses on whiteflies (specifically the sweetpotato whitefly Bemisia tabaci) and B. tabaci-transmitted viruses on the biological and molecular levels. We also study other pathogen-vector systems and insect pest resistance to pesticides (whiteflies, thrips, aphids, psyllids and others). Bacterial symbionts of B. tabaci and other insects are in the center of our interests as they have fundamental roles in pathogen transmission and in many aspects of the biology of whiteflies and other insects, and can serve as excellent platform for developing novel methods for future whitefly and virus disease control.
Harari Ally R., Prof.
Kaspi Roy, Ph.D.
Kliot Adi, Ph.D. We study different aspects of mite-plant interactions. Our current main projects include: -Genetic taxonomy of different mite families using microsatellites and mitogenome sequencing. -Circadian rhythms in mites. -Mite secretome (molecules secreted by mites to their plant hosts).
Levi-Zada (Byers) Anat, Ph.D. Education: BSc in Chemistry (extended), MSc and PhD in Organic and Polymer Chemistry, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Givat Ram, Jerusalem. Tutored by Profs Y. Avni and J. Klien (MSc); Profs A. Zilkha and Y. Avni (PhD). Post-Doc in Loughborough Uni., UK. with Prof. D. Horstone 1. Identification of insect pheromones of agricultural and economical importance in Israel/worldwide, From basic science to application: Isolation, chemical analysis, synthesis, lure design and formulation, and field testing of insect pheromones. 2. Development of advanced practices using pheromones in Integrate Pest Management (IPM) for detection, monitoring and pest control (mating disruption, mass-trapping, push-pull and lure & kill). 3. Development of novel and environmentally friendly formulations that release pheromones at effective levels for long periods. 4. Identification of pest insect repellents and attractants for application in push-pull methodologies.
Nestel David, Ph.D. Spatial Dispersion Patterns of Fruit Flies; Fruit Fly Surveillance Methods and Early Warning Systems for Invasive Species; Precision Targeting of Fruit Flies; Nutritional Physiology of Fruit Flies; Alternative Control Methods, Including Mass-Trapping and Sterile Insect Technique
Pines Gur, Ph.D. - Genome Editing - Molecular diagnostics and detection - Metabolic engineering
Shpigler Hagai Y, Ph.D. The lab's focus is the biology of honey bees and bumble bees. Bees are the most important pollinators in agriculture and give pollination services to many other crops. Our research projects are on bees' pathogens, mainly viruses, the bees' endocrine system, and the interaction between hormones and pathogens. We also study the relationship between pathogens and the behavior of the bees. We use a multilevel approach to understand the mechanism of pathogens' interaction with bees at the colony, group, individual, cell, and gene levels. We analyze our findings at the proximate mechanistic and ultimate levels to understand our conclusions from an evolutionary perspective. The research goals are also applicative with the target of developing new approaches for the protection of honey bees from diseases.
Soroker Victoria, Ph.D. a. Chemical Ecology: 1) Regulation of pheromone production and detection in honeybees 2) Host recognition in arthropods (broad mite-Polyphagotarsonemus latus, Varroa destructor, Hyalesthes obsoletus; Capnodis tenebrionis; Dacus ciliatus). 3) Isolation of sex pheromones: Batrachedra amydraula; Pear Psylla-Cacopsyla bidens. b) Honeybee health- colony losses c) IPM - Date palm pests: Red Palm Weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus; Honeybee pests: Varroa mite
Engineers/Technicians
Name
(Surname, First name)
Research Interests /
Job description
Ben-Aziz Orna, Ms.
Bonda Elad, M.Sc.
Bucki Patricia, Ph.D.
Davidovitz Michael
Fefer Daniela, B.Sc. Pheromone chemistry Identification, synthesis and applications
Glanz Eyal, Mr.
Halon Eyal, M.Sc.
Kontsedalov Svetlana, Ms.
Lebedev Galina, M.Sc.
Madar Kramer Reut, M.Sc.
Otmy Assaf, B.Sc.
Partosh Tamir, M.Sc.
Protasov Alex, Ph.D. Forest pests; Biological control of insect pests.
Steiner Sara, B.Sc.
Scholars
Name
(Surname, First name)
Research Interests /
Job description
Retiree
Name
(Surname, First name)
Research Interests /
Job description
Altstein Vinnie (Miriam), Prof. General: 1. Neuroendocrinology and neurochemistry 2. Rational design of insecticides 3. Molecular diagnostics 4. Food toxicology Specific topics: 1. Studies of neuroendocrine mechanisms in moths (sex pheromone biosynthesis, melanization, pupariation, muscle contraction, diapause). 2. Rational design of environment friendly non-toxic insect control agents based on disruption of the neuroendocrine system (i.e., design of neuropeptide-antagonist based insecticides). 3. Studies of bioavailability (penetrability through the cuticle) of compounds into insects. 4. Development of receptor based high throughput screening assays for discovery of new insect control agents. 5. Development of novel probes and immunochemical/microarray methods for monitoring pesticide residues from water, food and environmental samples.
Ben-Yakir David, Ph.D. Development of IPM programs for protected and field crops. The fate of antibodies ingested by arthropod pests and the potential of specific antibodies as insecticides Research topics in protected Crops: 1. Effect of photoselective covers on pest's entry and establishment. 2. Risk of pest's entry and establishment in time and space. 3. Reducing thrips damages. 4. Post harvest treatments for quarantine pests. Research topics in field Crop: 1. Pests of sweet corn. 2. Soil pests (earwigs, scarabs). 3. Pests of wheat.
Chejanovsky Nor, Prof. Insect Viruses: Bee Viruses (host range, prevention, Colony collapse disorder CCD). Baculoviruses (host range, implementation in pest control). The insect antiviral response: innate immunity, RNAi, apoptosis. Virus Task Force coordinator COLOSS network
Glazer Itamar, Prof. Biological Control of Insect Pests by Microbial control agents: Entomopathogenic nematodes- Ecology, Genetics and Application Entomopathogenic fungi- Ecology, host-parasite interactions and application.
Mendel Zvi, Ph.D.
Spiegel Yitzhak, Prof. --- Control of plant-parasitic nematodes by intervention in the host-recognition process. --- Biological control of plant-parasitic nematodes. --- Cereal cyst, citrus and ornamental nematodes in Israel.
Weintraub Phyllis, Ph.D. Biological and physical control of insect and mite pests, vectors of phytoplasmas
Contact details
Telephone Tel: 972-(0)3-9683760
Fax Fax: 972-(0)3-9683781
Email Email: anatzada@volcani.agri.gov.il
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