Apostolos Kapranas

Research interests

I am broadly interested on applied population biology and behavioural and evolutionary ecology. My research organisms are mainly parasitoid wasps and lately entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs), both of which are used in biological pest control as well as being important species for behavioural and ecological disciplines. For my research, I use a variety of research methods spanning from field trials, laboratory behavioural assays, and analytical chemistry methods (e.g., metabolomics). I also maintain an interest in modeling and statistics.

Past applied research was on the biology and ecology of parasitoids of a suite of agricultural pest insects such as scale insects, moth pests and stored product coleopteran and lepidopteran pests and also on the use of EPNs for control of forest pests. Fundamental research was focused on life history evolution, sex ratios and contest behavior.
My current project in University of Neuchâtel seeks to further develop a novel application method of EPNs for the control of economically important soil-dwelling pests of vegetable crops. This method relies on the incorporation of EPNs in beads that can sustain EPN for longer periods in agricultural soils. Additionally, attractant and feeding stimulants will also be added in the beads with the aim of deviating the pests from feeding on the roots.  My involvement is on both fundamental (identifying semiochemicals) and on applied (optimizing the bead quality/durability and field testing) aspects of the project.



Journal Papers

Kapranas A, Maher A & Griffin CT (2017) The influence of organic matter content and media compaction on the dispersal of entomopathogenic nematodes with different foraging strategies. PARASITOLOGY in press

Kapranas A, Malone B, Quinn S, O’Tuama P, Peters A & Griffin CT (2017) Optimizing the application method of entomopathogenic nematode suspension for Biological control of large pine weevil Hylobius abietis. BIOCONTROL 62: 659-667.

Guy A, Gaffney M, Kapranas A, Griffin CT (2017) Conditioning the entomopathogenic nematodes Steinernema carpocapsae and Heterorhabditis megidis by pre-application storage improves efficacy against black vine weevil, Otiorhynchus sulcatus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) at low and moderate temperatures. BIOLOGICAL CONTROL 108: 40-46.

Kapranas A, Malone B, Quinn S, McNamara L, Williams CD, O’ Tuama P, Peters A, Griffin CT (2017) Efficacy of entomopathogenic nematodes for control of large pine weevil, Hylobius abietis: effects of soil type, pest density and spatial distribution.JOURNAL OF PEST SCIENCE 90: 495-505.

Eliopoulos PA, Kapranas A, Givropoulou EG, Hardy ICW (2017) Reproductive efficiency of the bethylid wasp Cephalonomia tarsalis: the influences of spatial structure and host density.  BULLETIN OF ENTOMOLOGICAL RESEARCH 107: 139-147.

Kapranas A, Snart CJP, Barrett DA & Hardy ICW (2016) "Metabolomics of aging assessed in individual parasitoid wasps". SCIENTIFIC REPORTS 6: 34848.

Wilkinson R, Kapranas A & Hardy ICW (2016) Detecting non-binomial sex allocation in the presence of mortality. JOURNAL OF THEORETICAL BIOLOGY 408: 167-178.

Kapranas A, Hardy ICW, Tang X, Gardner A & Li B (2016) Sex ratios, virginity and local resource enhancement in a quasisocial parasitoid. ENTOMOLOGIA EXPERIMENTALIS ET APPLICATA 159: 243-251.

Kapranas A, Maher A & Griffin C (2015) Higher relatedness mitigates mortality in a nematode with lethal male fighting. JOURNAL OF EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY, 29: 344-351.

Snart CJP, Kapranas A, Barrett DA, ICW Hardy (2015). Nutritional status alters the lipidome of a bethylid wasp incapable of de novo lipogenesis. PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY 74 (OCE5), E300.

Kapranas A & Tena A (2015) Encyrtid Parasitoids of Soft Scale Insects: biology, behaviour and their use in biological Control. ANNUAL REVIEW OF ENTOMOLOGY, 60: 195-211.

Tang X, Meng L, Kapranas A, Xu F, Hardy ICW & Li B (2014) Mutually beneficial host exploitation and ultra-biased sex ratios in quasisocial parasitoids. NATURE COMMUNICATIONS, 5: 1-7.

Kapranas A & Hardy ICW (2014) One hundred years of insect parasitoids. BIOCONTROL NEWS AND INFORMATION, 35: 1-4.

Kapranas A, Lo Giudice D, Peri E, Millar JG & Colazza S (2013) Emergence, dispersal, and mate finding via a substrate-borne sex pheromone in the parasitoid Metaphycus luteolus (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae). ENTOMOLOGIA EXPERIMENTALIS ET APPLICATA, 148: 74-83.

Lyttle J, Kapranas A, Morgan DGW, Nichols JM, Morse JG (2012) Sex Ratio Dynamics of Gonatocerus ashmeadi, a Parasitoid of the Glassy-winged Sharpshooter in California. ENTOMOLOGIA EXPERIMENTALIS ET APPLICATA, 145: 222-227.

Kapranas A, Tena A, Luck RF (2012) Dynamic virulence in a parasitoid wasp: The influence of clutch size and sequential oviposition on egg encapsulation. ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR, 83: 833-838.

Tena A, Kapranas A, Walker GP, Garcia-Mari F & Luck RF (2011) Larval morphology of Metaphycus flavus and the role of host attachment in larval cannibalism. BULLETIN OF ENTOMOLOGICAL RESEARCH, 101: 365-372.

Kapranas A, Hardy ICW, Luck RF & Morse JG (2011) Parasitoid developmental mortality in the field: patterns, causes and consequences for sex ratio and virginity. JOURNAL OF ANIMAL ECOLOGY, 80: 192-203.

Kapranas A, Lo Giudice D, Morse GP & Luck RF (2011) Biology and behaviour of Metaphycus angustifrons Compere (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae), a newly established parasitoid of soft scale insects (Hemiptera: Coccidae) in California. BIOLOGICAL CONTROL, 56: 139-144.

Kapranas A, Wajnberg E & Luck RF (2009) Sequences of sex allocation and mortality in clutches of Metaphycus parasitoids of soft scale insects and the prevalence of all-female broods. ECOLOGICAL ENTOMOLOGY, 34: 652-662.

Tena A, Kapranas A, Luck, RF & Garcia-Marí F (2009) Larval cannibalism during the late developmental stages of a facultatively gregarious encyrtid endoparasitoid. ECOLOGICAL ENTOMOLOGY, 34, 669–676.

Kapranas A, Federici BA, Luck RF & Johnson RF (2009) Cellular immune response of brown soft scale Coccus hesperidum L. (Hemiptera: Coccidae) to eggs of Metaphycus luteolus Timberlake (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae). BIOLOGICAL CONTROL, 48: 1-5.

Kapranas A & Luck RF (2008) Egg maturation, host feeding, and longevity in two Metaphycus species parasitoids of soft scale insects. BIOLOGICAL CONTROL, 47: 147-153.

Tena A, Kapranas A, Luck RF & Garcia-Mari F (2008) Host discrimination, superparasitism and infanticide by a gregarious endoparasitoid. ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR 76:789–799.

Kapranas A, Pacheco P, Forster LD, Morse JG & Luck RF (2008) Precise sex allocation by several encyrtid parasitoids of brown soft scale Coccus hesperidum L. (Hemiptera: Coccidae). BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY AND SOCIOBIOLOGY 62:901-912.

Kapranas A, Morse JG, Pacheco P, Forster LD & RF Luck (2007) Survey of brown soft scale Coccus hesperidum parasitoids in southern California citrus. BIOLOGICAL CONTROL 42:288-299.

Book Chapters

Kapranas A (2012) Coccidae. In "Integrated Control of Citrus Pests in the Mediterranean Region" (Vacante V & Gerson U Eds),pp 183-191, Bentham Science Publishers.

Peri E & Kapranas A (2012) Pseudococcidae and Monophlebidae. In "Integrated Control of Citrus Pests in the Mediterranean Region" (Vacante V & Gerson U Eds), pp 182-192, Bentham Science Publishers.

Kapranas A, Vacante V & Colazza S (2009) Il controllo biologico degli insetti fitofagi degli agrumi. In “Trattato di Agrumicoltura” Edagricole – Il sole 24 ore Agricoltura pp. 355-369.





Apostolos Kapranas




+41 32 718 31 43

+41 32 718 31 35

Bureau D125