VIR-50806 BSc Research Project Insect Viruses


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Individual Paper28
Independent study0
Course coordinator(s)dr. ir. VID Ros
Lecturer(s)dr. ir. VID Ros
Examiner(s)dr. ir. VID Ros

Language of instruction:


Assumed knowledge on:

One of the following courses: CBI-20306 Cell Biology and Health, ENT-20806 Integrated Pest Management, NEM-20806 Basics of Infectious Diseases, ENT-53806 Biological Control of Insects, PHP-21303 Fundamentals of Plant Pathology and Entomology

Continuation courses:

YBI-85812 BSc Thesis Biology, YBT-80324 BSc Thesis Biotechnology, YML-80321 BSc Thesis Molecular Life Sciences, YPS-82318 BSc Thesis Plant Sciences


Many viruses are known to specifically infect insects. Insect viruses in insects provide an excellent platform to study basic infection processes and virus-host interactions. In addition, insect viruses can be used as tools to control pest insects, but can also be a threat to beneficial insects and insects reared for food and feed. During this course, the student will get acquainted with basic molecular, ecological, virological and/or behavioural tools to study the interaction between insect viruses and insects. This can be aimed at understanding basic infection processes, at unravelling the mechanism of viral manipulation of host behaviour or at testing and optimizing the use of viruses for biocontrol applications. After developing a clear hypothesis, experimental research will be conducted to test this hypothesis. Experimental approaches may include: behavioural assays, bio-assays, (Q) RT-PCR, constructing recombinant viruses (cloning, recombination, bac-to-bac system), microscopy.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- develop a clear and testable hypothesis on insect virus-insect interactions;
- perform and critically evaluate experiments in order to study insect virus-insect interactions;
- undertake academic methods of scientific study (problem identification, review of scientific literature, data collection, analysis and assessment of scientific information);
- convey the results obtained from experimentation and analysis by means of a written report.


Develop hypothesis, design and perform molecular, ecological and/or behavioural experiments with insect viruses, study insect virus-insect interactions, literature research, writing a scientific paper.


Written report on practical assignments and evaluation by examiner. The minimum mark for the written report is 5.5.


Provided at the start of the course.