Current members

Dr. Anne Duplouy- Group Leader

I am fascinated by the interactions between eukaryotic hosts and their microbial symbionts, particularly their evolution in changing environments. I completed my PhD at the University of Queensland in Brisbane Australia, and then moved to Helsinki for my first research fellowship, where I worked on population genetics and adaptation in the Glanville fritillary butterfly. After a couple of years at the University of Lund on a Marie Curie Fellowship, I am now back in Helsinki as the leader of the Insect Symbiosis Ecology and Evolution research group

Federica Valerio - Postdoctoral researcher

I have a PhD in Genetic and Molecular Biology from the University of Pavia, Italy (2021).
I am now working on a comparative genomics project aiming at characterizing the genomic diversity of Wolbachia in various insects, their phylogenetic relationship and evolutionary history.

Camila S. Beraldo - PhD student

I joined the ISEE lab as a graduate student in December 2019. I am fascinated by symbiotic relationships and how they affect the evolution of the species involved in the interaction. Currently, I am working on the diversity, transmission, and evolution of bacterial symbionts in the insect community associated with the ribwort plantain (Plantago lanceolata). To address my questions, I am combining fieldwork across the Åland archipelago, Finland, experiments in the laboratory, molecular work, and phylogenetic analyses.  I am funded by LUOVA, and co-supervised by Dr. Saskya van Nouhuys from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, India.

Uxue R. Rodriguez - Research assistant / Master student

I am interested in plant symbiosis, evolution and adaptation. I graduated in genetics in Barcelona and joined a Master program in plant biology at the University of Helsinki. I first joined the ISEE lab as a research assistant in the lab and now study the quadripartite interaction between insect, their symbionts, their host plant, and plant viral pathogens. Project co-supervised by Dr. Hanna Susi from the University of Helsinki.

Jenny Malmberg - Master student

I wrote my bachelor thesis on mosquito ecology and strategies to combat malaria. I am intrigued by insect ecology. My Master studies investigates the effect of male-male competition and sex-ratio distortion on females’ reproductive organs in butterflies.
Project co-supervised by Dr. Pasi Sihvonen from LUOMUS natural history museum, the University of Helsinki.

Susanna Linna - Master student

I have a BSc in Molecular Biosciences. I am now a student in the Genetics and Molecular Biosciences MSc programme at the University of Helsinki. I have a special interest in health and disease, and thus chose Molecular and Analytical Health Biosciences as my major. I joined the ISEE lab in 2021 to conduct research on the microbiota of caterpillars from natural habitats with different degrees of anthropogenic degradation.

Elina Hanhimaki - Technical assistant

I am a microbiologist enthusiast with an interest in the versatile connections between animals and their associated microbiota. I have a BSc degree in Biology (2018) and a MSc degree in Genetics (2021) from the University of Oulu, Finland. I completed both degrees by studying gut microbiota diversity. I am now a Technical assistant in the ISEE lab, investigating variation in microbiota and metagenomic data.

Past members

  • Arttu Saarinen - Bachelor student
  • Mikael Englund - Summership
  • Cornelia Martel - Master student
  • Aude Giraud - Intern
  • Meri Lahteenaro - Summership
  • Zana Sinko - Professional school lab trainee
  • Shravya Kadali - Master student
  • Szabolcs Péterfi  - Professional school lab trainee
  • Junchen Deng - Master student
  • Daniel Blande - postdoc
  • Olivera Stojilovic - Intern
  • Isa Bengzon - Bachelor thesis
  • Carolina Sánchez Carpena - ERASMUS
  • Ekaterina Pylsy - Professional school lab trainee
  • Minna Kohonen - Summership


  • Dr. Oskar Brattstrom - Butterfly taxonomy and evolution - University of Cambridge, UK.
  • Dr. Sylvain Charlat - Dynamics of host/parasite associations - CNRS, University of Lyon 1, France.
  • Dr. Michelle Di Leo - Population genetics and genomics - The University of Helsinki, Finland.
  • Ilkka Hanski - Metapopulation, population/community ecology and evolution. Founder of the Metapopulation Research Centre - The University of Helsinki, Finland. Prof.
  • Prof. Greogory Hurst - Eco-evolution of host-parasite interactions - University of Liverpool, UK.
  • Dr. Inaki Iturbe-Ormaetxe - Eco-evolutionary biology of wolbachia-host interactions - Monash University, Melbourne Australia.
  • Dr. Jean-Yves Meyer - Botanist and conservation biologist - Tahiti, French Polynesia.
  • Prof. Nathan Rank - Plant/herbivore/pathogen interactions - Sonoma State University, USA.
  • Dr. Ayco Tack - Interactions plants/microbes/insects - Stockholm University, Sweden.
  • Scott O'Neill - Evolution of Wolbachia and its effect on its host, and developing a new biocontrol strategy to reduc transmission of mosquito-borne diseases - Monash University, Melbourne Australia. Prof.
  • Dr. Amy Truitt - Symbionts, conservation biology - Portland State University, Oregon, USA.  
  • Prof. Niklas Wahlberg - Systematics, evolutionary history of Lepidoptera - Lund University, Sweden.
  • Prof. Scott Beatson - Genomics of infectious diseases - University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.
  • Dr. Neil Davies - Executive director of the Moorea Gump Research Station, University of Berkeley (French Polynesia).
  • Dr. Jan Engelstadter - Mathematical modelling of the evolution of reproductive parasite.
  • Dr. Emily A. Hornett - Ecology and evolution of symbiotic bacteria in butterflies - University of Liverpool, UK.
  • Dr. Rainer Lehtonen - Genomics and genetics - The University of Helsinki, Finland.
  • Dr. Wolfgang J. Miller - Functional and evolutionary dynamics of symbiotic systems - University of Vienna, Austria.
  • Dr. Marjo Saastamoinen - Environmental stress in natural populations - The University of Helsinki, Finland
  • Dr. Vicencio Oostra - Evolution in changing environments - University of Liverpool, UK.
  • Dr. Saskya van Nouhuys - Community ecology and evolution - Cornell University, USA.
  • Dr. Fabrice Vavre- Host/symbionts interactions - CNRS, University of Lyon 1, France.
  • Dr. Megan Woolfit- Bioinformatics, genetics and genomics - Monash University, Melbourne Australia.