Tala Eyad Sami Asarwi 

Tala Eyad Sami Asarwi 

PGSB Fellow
Palestine Technical University – Kadoorie PTUK

Specialization : Molecular Applied Biology

Palestinian supervisor : Dr.Rana Samara

Palestinian supervisor : Horticulture and Agriculture Extension ,Faulty of agricultural Science and Technology  at Palestine Technical university – Kadoorie (PTUK) 

Degree aims : BSc 

Supervisor in FZJ : DR. Asmaa Qdemat

Host Institution in FZJ : Forschungszentrum Julic GmbH

Title of research : Applications of nanoparticles in agriculture and the role in disease management

Research purpose : Entomopathogenic fungi are microbial agents of insect control in nature. They have been used as biological strategies to manage insect invasion; however, the challenge is to maintain their shelf life and viability when exposed to high temperatures, ultraviolet radiation, and humidity. Synthesized silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) from fungal extracellular enzymes are an alternative to using these microorganisms to obtain nanoparticles with insecticidal action. Our main expectation is that AgNPs with entomopathogenic fungus extract can produce an innovative bioinsecticide product using a green production process. Thus, the project will be carried out with three work packages to achieve our research expectations. The first part of our project will be done at Samara lab in Palestine, which will focus on the isolation and identification of an endogenous isolate of the entomopathogenic fungi, such as Beauveria bassiana, Metarhizium anisopliae, and Isaria fumosorosea. These are widely used in biological control programs and mycoinsecticides development due to their easy handling, knowledge about their metabolism, and interaction with insects of different orders. The second part will focus on the extracellular synthesis and purification of silver nanoparticles. Silver nanoparticle synthesis will be done using from fungal extracellular enzymes method at Samara lab. This method consists of reducing silver metal salts using entomopathogenic fungi extracts, such as AgNPs synthesized with I. fumosorosea that showed insecticide activity in Aedes aegypti and Culex quinquefasciatus (Diptera: Culicidae) and AgNPs synthesized with B. Bassiana e M. anisopliae extract with insecticidal action on the mustard aphid (Lipaphis erysimi) (Homoptera: Aphididae) and Culex pipiens (Diptera: Culicidae). Thus, AgNPs with entomopathogenic fungus extract can produce an innovative insecticidal product using a green production process. The third part of our project will focus on the characterization of the synthesized nanoparticles containing entomopathogenic fungi using UV-visible spectrophotometer, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) to obtain the particle size and shape. All the characterization will be done at FZJ with a collaboration with Asmaa Qdemat and with a master's student for 6 months. Then, the efficacy of nanoparticles containing entomopathogenic fungi and their different biological activities against insects will be evaluated. Finally, the assessment of environmental risk on non-target species will be investigated. All results that emerge from this project are going to be published exclusively in mutual authorship.