Plant Protection Institute

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Personnel (click for email): Dr. Zsuzsa Basky
Address: Növényvédelmi Kutatóintézete, Magyar Tudományos Akadémia, 1525 Budapest, POB 102, Hungary
Telephone: +36 13769555. Fax: +36 13769729
Links: Academy
Pages in English: Academy
Summary of data and its usage

The Plant Protection Institute (PPI) is a grant-aided, non-profit institution operating under the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (HAS) since 1982. However, PPI itself is more than one hundred years old. It was founded first as a State Phylloxera Research Station in 1880 with the aim to overcome phylloxera attack of grapevine in Hungary. The Station was later reorganized and fused with another research station devoted to seed testing and pathology. From these two, the Research Institute for Plant Protection was initiated in 1932, and it belonged to the Hungarian Ministry of Agriculture until 1981.

PPI is the only institution in Hungary devoted entirely to plant protection research covering all aspects of this discipline, e.g. biology of pathogens, pests and weeds; physiology and biochemistry of plant resistance to diseases and abiotic stress factors; interactions between pathogens or pests and their natural antagonists and the potential of biocontrol; and the development of environmentally safe pesticides. As one of the member institutes of HAS, PPI's role is primarily in basic research but with links to applied research as taking part in the working-out of new control strategies for both agricultural and horticultural crops.

The land and buildings of PPI are of governmental property leased to PPI by the HAS which finances in part (some 40%) the Institute's operation costs. The remaining portion of the budget comes from both domestic and international research funds. The Institute's staff numbers 112 employees including 48 scientific workers.

PPI is subdivided into six departments each representing one of the main fields of plant protection. Work for the EXAMINE project will be done in the Entomology Department which is composed of three research groups with well-defined activities on aspects of insect physiology and ecology. The Behavioural Ecology Group is searching for environmentally safe ways of controlling pests by modifying their behaviour; the Population Ecology Group investigates insect populations in agroecosystems, and the Insect Physiology Group is involved in studies on insect hormones. Pesticide Chemistry Studies in this department include the design and synthesis of selective insect control agents with new modes of action, as well as investigations of substances of natural origin as potential pesticides. In addition, environment-related research projects are being carried out, such as the fate of pesticides in plants, and effects of environmental pollutants on plants.

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