About this Research Topic
Biological control is an increasingly important method that has been used in recent years to control the populations of important arthropod pests causing damage to agriculture, livestock, domestic animals, and humans. Entomopathogenic fungi, especially Metarhizium anisopliae and Beauveria bassiana, have been intensively studied due to: 1) the great efficiency in causing death to their host, 2) to the great genetic variability that allows selecting highly virulent isolates to control different arthropod pests, 3) to their safety for the environment and vertebrates. However, the success in the use of entomopathogenic fungi depends on many factors, including the interactions among the fungus, its target host and the environment (solar radiation, daily temperature variation, relative humidity and soil conditions).
This Research Topic will address issues related to the biological control of arthropods focusing on the use of entomopathogenic fungi for controlling ticks and insects of importance in agriculture, livestock and public health. The most detailed knowledge of the physiology of arthropods and their interactions with entomopathogenic fungi, as well as the molecular mechanisms involved in the interaction between hosts and entomopathogenic fungi, especially considering the host’s immune response, will contribute to the advances in the biological control of arthropod pests. This information can be used to implement more efficient control strategies. Therefore, studies on the physiology of arthropods which evidence the deepening of the knowledge on host/entomopathogenic fungi interactions are encouraged in this Research Topic.
This Research Topic focuses on: 1) the molecular and immunological mechanisms involved in host-pathogen interaction; 2) the aspects associated to the virulence of entomopathogenic fungi against arthropods; 3) the functioning of different signaling pathways of the immune response following the infection by entomopathogenic fungi. Accordingly, manuscripts that advance the knowledge and understanding of these subjects are welcome, including:
• Advances in the use of entomopathogenic fungi for controlling ticks and insects, especially those of importance for human and veterinary medicine.
• Mechanisms associated with the cellular and humoral aspects of the host’s immune response.
• Biotechnologies for elucidation and use of genes or gene products to improve the efficacy of entomopathogenic fungi.
• Advances in the molecular and biotechnological approaches regarding the comprehension of mechanisms of infection of entomopathogenic fungi.
• The use of gene editing for comprehending insect physiology.
• Functioning of different immune response signaling pathways after entomopathogenic fungi infection.
• Study of genes involved in cell differentiation and pathogenicity of entomopathogenic fungi.
• Metabolites associated with fungal virulence and host specificity.
Keywords: Immune response, Ticks, Mosquitoes, Metarhizium spp., Beauveria spp.
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.