Principal Investigator


Prof Phil Taylor

Department of Biological Sciences,
Macquarie University,
NSW 2109,

Tel:  +61 (0)2 9850 1311
Fax: +61 (0)2 9850 4299


Department profile

Research Fellows


Dr Fleur Ponton

Fleur joined the lab in 2014 to conduct research on larval nutrition of Queensland fruit flies, with a particular focus on establishing the role of specific micro and macronutrients in development and the role of gut symbionts. 


Dr Chronis Rempoulakis

Chronis is joining the lab at the end of 2015. In the past he worked extensively in fruit fly Sterile Insect Technique related research projects in Greece, Austria and Israel, and served as expert for IAEA. His main interests are insect reproductive behaviour and nutrition, but recently he has also been involved in insect  chemical ecology and microbiology. 

Dr Jeanneth Perez

Jeanneth, from Colombia and recently from Mexico, joined the lab in 2014 to conduct research on fruit fly pheromones.  Her work is supported by fellowships from the Australian government Endeavour Research Fellowship and the Mexican government CONACYT program.

Dr Soo Park

Soo is currently working on development and chemical characterization of new lures for the control of fruit fly pests in collaboration with Ian Jamie and Joanne Jamie at Macquarie and Matt Siderhurst of Eastern Mennonite University, USA.

Dr Kate Mitchell

Kate Mitchell

Kate, from Australia, joined the lab in 2016 and is studying stress resistance and the underlying mechanisms in Queensland fruit flies. Her research interests also include the adaptive potential and phenotypic plasticity of stress resistance traits as well as the factors influencing dispersal ability in Tephritid flies. She joins us following a position in South Africa studying the Mediterranean fruit fly.


Dr Vivian Mendez

Vivian, from Costa Rica, completed her PhD in 2014. Her PhD research comprised a detailed study of pre- and post-copulatory sexual selection in a jumping spider. Vivian is now working with Queensland fruit flies, investigating pre-release supplements for flies using Sterile Insect Technique programs, and is also developing some novel control methods in collaboration with Applied Horticultural Research.

Dr Marianne Peso

Marianne, from Canada, joined us in 2015 and is carrying out research on the neurobiology, learning, and memory of tephritid fruit flies. 

Marianne also administers activities of Macquarie University's Biosecurity Futures Research Centre.

Research Students


Saleh Adnan

Saleh, from Bangladesh, started his MRes/PhD in 2015 with support from a Macquarie University Research Excellence Scholarship. Saleh's project investigates the effects of methoprene, a juvenile hormone analog, on pre- and post-copulatory sexual selection and ecological fitness of Queensland fruit flies with a view to deploying methoprene as a  pre-released treatment in Sterile Insect Technique pest management programs.

Tahereh Moaddeli

Tahereh, from Iran, started her MRes/PhD in 2015 with support from a Macquarie University Research Excellence Scholarship. Tahereh's PhD project focuses on the development of larval diets for mass rearing of Queensland fruit flies. Sterile Insect Technique programs currently under development will require production of up to 100 million flies per week, and effective larval diets, that produce high quality flies at minimal expense, are an important element of this effort. 

Humayra Akter

Humayra, from Bangladesh, started her PhD in 2014 with support from a Macquarie University Research Excellence Scholarship. Humayra's project entails the use of raspberry ketone as a pre-release supplement to accelerate development and increase sexual performance of Queensland fruit flies used in Sterile Insect Technique programs.

Maurizio Benelli


Maurizio, from Italy, joined the lab in 2015 with support from a Macquarie University Research Excellence Scholarship linked to a Cotutelle agreement with the University of Bologna. His interests include the development of mass rearing techniques of insects, their storage at low temperature and utilization in pest control strategies. Maurizio's PhD project focuses on cold-storage of Queensland fruit flies in order to facilitate their large-scale production and 'stockpiling' for use in the Sterile Insect Technique program

Tina Peckmezian

Tina, from Canada, started her PhD in 2011 with support from an Endeavor Postgraduate Award. Her project explores cognition in jumping spiders ('arachno-psychology'). Jumping spiders have unique visual systems and have been investigated for visual ability and, to a lesser extent, perception. Cognition, however, has received very little attention and is an area of great promise for these extraordinary spiders.

Ben Hanssen

Ben started his MRes in Chemistry & Biomolecular Sciences in 2014 under primary supervision of Ian Jamie, and plans to continue on to a PhD in 2016. Ben's project investigates a series of new prospective fruit fly lures based on zingerone, a compound that is related to the common lures cuelure and methyl-eugenol, but effectively attracts some flies that respond poorly to either of the common lures. New lures will enhance Australia's border security by enabling early detection, and rapid response, to invasions by fruit flies that are not detected in the usual cuelure and methyl-eugenol traps.

Donald Cameron

Don started his PhD in Chemistry & Biomolecular Sciences in 2015 under primary supervision of Ian Jamie. Don's research focuses on fruit fly lure formulation, developing new approaches to optimize performance of existing lures and developing formulation solutions for new lures.

Eloise Deaux

Eloise, from France, started her PhD in 2012, with support from an International Macquarie University Research Excellence Scholarship. Her project explores how social and environmental factors influence the design of canidsí communication signals. She is also investigating if acoustic surveys would provide a viable, non-invasive method of monitoring wild dingo populations. 


Technical staff


Dr Bishwo Mainali

Recently arrived in Australia from Korea, Bishwo joined the lab in 2015. He is helping out with some collaborative projects in the lab and is establishing some new research projects of his own. 

Urvashi Lallu

Urvashi joined the lab as a Research Officer in 2015, and is closely involved in supporting numerous projects in the lab. Her main focus is on technical aspects of small and large-scale fruit fly rearing.

Shabnam Tabrizi

Shabnam joined the lab in 2015 as a Research Assistant. She is involved in research project investigating the role of gut bacteria on nutrition of larval Queensland fruit flies.


Tess Nelson

Tess Nelson

Tess is completing her final year of undergraduate studies, completing a Bachelor of Science majoring in Biology and Environmental Earth Science. She is a research volunteer assisting Marianne Peso with her projects on fly learning to gain insight into the world of research.