Mass rearing of insects is a rapidly expanding industry due to improved mechanisation and increasing interest in the use of insects for a variety of purposes, such as sterile insect techniques, food and feed, waste management, and biocontrol of insect pest species. However, expertise is urgently needed to address emerging problems with infectious disease outbreaks in mass reared insects. Therefore, we propose the INSECT DOCTORS joint doctoral programme to build a durable European framework to educate experts in insect pathology in order to overcome the shortage in properly educated experts in Europe, and beyond. The research of INSECT DOCTORS will expand our understanding of emerging pathogens and will provide necessary tools for disease management in industrial insect rearing. The complementary expertise of the participating institutes and companies leads to an ambitious and exciting programme, providing interdisciplinary training and research in pertinent areas of insect pathology (bacteriology, mycology, virology) and entomology (immunology, physiology). In an overarching training program, novel advanced courses will provide students with technical, scientific and transferable skills. This interdisciplinary approach, crucial to provide insight in the complexity of insect-microbe interactions in a range of farmed insects, can only be achieved by joining forces between European universities. Furthermore, this joint doctoral programme aims to build durable partnerships for doctoral training in insect pathology, thereby overcoming national and interdisciplinary boundaries in doctoral research. By requiring equal excellence from all participants in this training programme we will contribute to high level PhD education across Europe. In short: INSECT DOCTORS will provide the durable framework, the people, the scientific knowledge and the tools to assist the upcoming insect industry to diagnose and mitigate infectious diseases in their mass reared insects cultures.
|Effective start/end date||1/11/19 → 31/10/23|