Lucia Zappalà, University of Catania, Italy
Full professor of General and Applied Entomology at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment (Di3A). Her main research topics are Hymenoptera parasitoids, their biology and application as biocontrol agents in agricultural systems and the side effects of pesticides on natural enemies.
Michel Peterschmitt, Cirad, France
Plant virologist at Cirad, with a major focus on the evolution of geminiviruses and their transmission by insect vectors. His current research is on the evolution of Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) by homologous recombination and on the transmission of geminiviruses by aphids. Some of his most recent publications are on the description and analysis of a plant resistance-driven emergence of an invasive TYLCV recombinant in tomato.

Climate change and globalization tend to modify the biotic and abiotic environment of pests and pathogens as well as their geographic distribution. This is conducive to pest and disease invasions and to the emergence of populations with new phenotypes, which in turn may jeopardize established control methods. These global changes stress the importance of monitoring in Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and the crucial need of adapting prevention and control strategies. Management strategies should also aim at being more environmentally-friendly and less detrimental to human health according to the one health concept. Thus, the symposium aims to address the challenges of working out innovative prevention and monitoring tools as well as sustainable pest and disease control methods in temperate and tropical cropping systems.

The following topics will be developed during the symposium:

• Emerging pests and diseases
• Epidemiology and monitoring of pests and diseases
• Progress in early and specific detection (quantitative PCR, image analysis, models, …)
• Mechanisms of biological or molecular interactions in a biocontrol perspective (multitrophic networks, interactions between plant, pests, pathogens, natural enemies, microbiotas…)
• Biocontrol strategies and methods (biostimulants, defence elicitors, plant protection natural compounds, biocontrol agents, RNA vaccination ….)
• Role of soil and plant microbiota in plant defence
• Alternative methods for pest and disease control in protected crops (greenhouse, high tunnels…)
• Alternative methods for pest and disease control in field conditions
• Experience sharing on innovative strategies in temperate or tropical areas, and in annual or perennial crops
• Capacity building and implementation approaches
• Economic, social and environmental impact of alternative pest and disease control