In search of tobacco whiteflies and their transmissible viruses


About the research

Have you ever heard of the tobacco whitefly? This exotic fly, smaller than a grain of rice, can transmit more than 300 viruses to plants. Thus, tobacco whiteflies can kill almost all vegetables in a greenhouse. They are already popping up in greenhouses of vegetable growers in our country, but exactly how big the problem is, we don't know. Not yet. Because Fauve Maertens (ILVO) is mapping the spread of the tobacco whitefly, in a study for the FPS Public Health, Food Chain Safety and Environment. Find out more about her first results in this video.

Fauve Maertens

Fauve Maertens grew up in the Flemish Ijzer Valley where nature and agriculture interact very closely. Her fascination for ecology and genetics made her choose to study Biology. As a plant health researcher within the Plant unit of the Institute for Agricultural, Fisheries, and Food Research (ILVO), she hopes to use her ecological and genetic knowledge to contribute to sustainable agriculture.

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