My research is currently focused on host specificity of wild-caught biting midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) and the phylogenetic relationship between the different species of biting midges of the genus Culicoides. Several species of Culicoides carry and transmit the bluetongue virus (BTV), which is prone to infect livestock and causes the very serious bluetongue disease.
I am analyzing blood-engorged females and amplifying a portion of the vertebrate mitochondrial cytochrome b gene to investigate which host species the biting midges prefer. The biting midges have been caught in both light and suction traps throughout Sweden and morphologically classified to species level. The phylogenetic analysis for this genus will be performed by sequencing the mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase subunit I.
This is part of my master project within Lund University with supervisors Staffan Bensch and Rickard Ignell. I have a very broad interest in ecology and a lot of enthusiasm about scientific research in this field and I hope to continue with a PhD project in ecology when I have completed my master thesis.