Biological Chemistry & Crop Protection
I study the genetic and ecological aspects of the evolution and spread of insecticide resistance mechanisms, primarily in aphid pests. My work focusses on selection imposed by insecticides with recent work focussing on various novel compounds available on the market or that are in the process of being developed by industry.
Specifically, I look at selective advantages afforded in the presence of insecticides and potential fitness costs suffered in their absence. This has established that genes conferring insecticide resistance can exert negative physiological and behavioural side-effects on their carriers, particularly during times of ecological stress.
I use my findings to advise the UK pesticide governing body and to formulate resistance management guidelines used by agricultural and horticultural advisors and growers. My research also provides data that allow greater insights into the fundamental processes involved in evolution.
Phone:+44 (0) 1582 763 133 ext: +44 1582 938356
Location:Rothamsted Research, West Common, Harpenden, Hertfordshire, AL5 2JQ
- Sustaining the effectiveness of new insecticides against aphid pests in the UK
- Combating resistance to aphicides in UK aphid pests
- Genetic and ecological determinants of insecticide resistance
- Aphid Advisory Alerts
- Population genetic analysis of pyrethroid resistant grain aphid (Sitobion avenae) using high resolution microsatellite markers
- Investigating pyrethroid resistance in UK cabbage stem flea beetle populations and developing a PCR-based assay for detecting turnip yellows virus in aphids.
- Investigating pyrethroid resistance in UK Pea and Bean Weevil
HE Van Emden, SP Foster & L Field. Poor survival on an artificial diet of two genotypes of the aphid Myzus persicae: a fitness cost of insecticide resistance? Agricultural and Forest Entomology.
SP Foster, VL Paul, R Slater, A Warren, I Denholm, L Field & MS Williamson (2014). A mutation (L1014F) in the voltage-gated sodium channel of the Grain aphid, Sitobion avenae, associated with resistance to pyrethroid insecticides. Pest Management Science.
LD Bacigalupe, K Barrientos, AP Beckerman, MJ Carter, CC Figueroa, SP Foster, AJ Moore, AX Silva & RF Nespolo (2014) Can invasions occur without change? A comparison of G-matrices and selection in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae. Ecology and Evolution.
E Fuentes-Contreras, CC Figueroa, AX Silva, LD Bacigalupe, LM Briones, SP Foster & TR Unruh (2013) Survey of resistance to four insecticides and their associated mechanisms in different genotypes of the green peach aphid (Hemiptera: Aphididae) from Chile. Journal of Economic Entomology 106, 400-407.
SP Foster, I Denholm, JL Rison, HE Portillo, J Margaritpoulis & R Slater (2012) Susceptibility of standard clones and European field populations of the Green Peach Aphid, Myzus persicae, and Cotton Aphid, Aphis gossypii (Hemiptera: Aphididae) to the novel anthranilic diamide insecticide cyantraniliprole. Pest Management Science 68, 629-633.
C Bass, AM Puinean, M Andrews, P Cutler, M Daniels, J Elias, VL Paul, AJ Crossthwaite, I Denholm, LM Field, SP Foster, R Lind, MS Williamson & R Slater (2011) Mutation of a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor β subunit is associated with resistance to neonicotinoid insecticides in the aphid Myzus persicae. BMC Neuroscience. Online Journal. 12:51
SP Foster, I Denholm, GM Poppy, R Thompson& W Powell (2011) Fitness trade-off in peach-potato aphids (Myzus persicae) between insecticide resistance and vulnerability to parasitoid attack at several spatial scales (2011) Bulletin of Entomological Research 101, 659-666.
P Foster, K Gorman & I Denholm. English field samples of Thrips tabaci show strong and ubiquitous resistance to deltamethrin (2010) Pest Management Science 66, 861-864.
B Fenton, JT Margaritopoulos, GL Malloch & SP Foster (2010) Micro-evolutionary change in relation to insecticide resistance in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae. Ecological Entomology 35, 131-146.
DR Gillespie, DJM Quiring, RG Foottit, SP Foster & S Acheampong (2009) Implications of phenotypic variation of Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae) for biological control on greenhouse pepper plants. Journal of Applied Entomology 133, 505-511.
SP Foster, D Cox, L Oliphant, S Mitchinson & I Denholm (2008) Correlated responses to neonicotinoid insecticides in clones of the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Pest Management Science 64, 1111-1114.
IG Eleftherianos, SP Foster, MS Williamson & I Denholm (2008) Inheritance of L1014F and M918T sodium channel mutations associated with pyrethroid resistance in Myzus persicae. Biology Letters 4 545-548.
I Eleftherianos, SP Foster, MS Williamson & I Denholm (2008) Characterization of the M918T sodium channel gene mutation associated with strong resistance to pyrethroid insecticides in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Sulzer). Bulletin Entomological Research 98, 183-191.�
RF van Toor, SP Foster, JA Anstead, S Mitchinson, B Fenton & L Kasprovicz (2008) Insecticide resistance and genetic composition of Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae) on field potatoes in New Zealand. Crop Protection 27, 236-247.�
L Kasprowicz, G Malloch, S Foster, J Pickup, J Zhan and B Fenton (2008) Clonal turnover of MACE-carrying peach-potato aphids (Myzus persicae (Sulzer), Homoptera: Aphididae) colonizing Scotland Bulletin Entomological Research 98, 115-124.�
WE Parker, JJ Howard, SP Foster�& I Denholm (2006) The effect of insecticide application sequences on the control and insecticide resistance status of the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae), on field crops of potato. Pest Management Science 62, 307-315.
B Fenton, G Malloch, JAT Woodford, SP Foster, J Anstead, I Denholm, L King� & J Pickup (2005) The attack of the clones: tracking the movement of insecticide resistant peach potato aphids Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Bulletin of Entomological Research. 95, 483-494.
SP Foster, I Denholm, R Thompson, GM Poppy & W Powell (2005) Reduced response of insecticide-resistant aphids�and attraction of parasitoids to aphid alarm pheromone; a potential fitness trade-off. Bulletin of Entomological Research, 95, 37-46.
SP Foster, NB Kift, J Baverstock, S Sime, K Reynolds, J Jones, R Thompson & GM Tatchell (2003) Association of MACE-based insecticide resistance in Myzus persicae with reproductive rate, response to alarm pheromone and vulnerability to attack by Aphidius colemani. Pest Management Science, 59, 1169-1178.
SP Foster, S Young, MS Williamson, I Duce, I Denholm & GJ Devine (2003) Analogous pleiotropic effects of insecticide resistance genotypes in peach-potato aphids and houseflies. Heredity 91, 98-106.
SP Foster, I Denholm & R Thompson (2003) Variation in response to neonicotinoid insecticides in peach-potato aphids, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Pest Management Science 59, 166-173.
SP Foster, R Harrington, AM Dewar, I Denholm & AL Devonshire (2002) Temporal and spatial dynamics of insecticide resistance in Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Pest Management Science 58, 895-907.�
LM Field & SP Foster (2002) Amplified esterase genes and their relationship with other insecticide resistance mechanisms in English field populations of the aphid, Myzus persicae. Pest Management Science 58, 889-894.
SP Foster, I Denholm & R Thompson (2002) Bioassay and field-simulator studies of the efficacy of pymetrozine against peach-potato aphids, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae), possessing different mechanisms of insecticide resistance. Pest Management Science 58, 805-810.
SP Foster, I Denholm & AL Devonshire (2002) Field-simulator studies of insecticide resistance to dimethyl-carbamates and pyrethroids conferred by metabolic- and target site-based mechanisms in peach-potato aphids, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Pest Management Science 58, 811-816.
SP Foster, I Denholm & AL Devonshire (2000) The ups and downs of insecticide resistance in peach-potato aphids (Myzus persicae) in the UK. Crop Protection 19, 873-879.
SP Foster, CM Woodcock, MS Williamson, AL Devonshire, I Denholm & R Thompson (1999) Reduced alarm response for peach-potato aphids (Myzus persicae) with knock-down resistance to insecticides (kdr) may impose a fitness cost through increased vulnerability to natural enemies. Bulletin of Entomological Research 89, 133-138.
D Martinez-Torres, SP Foster, LM Field, AL Devonshire & MS Williamson (1999) A sodium channel point mutation is associated with resistance to DDT and pyrethroid insecticides in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Sulzer) (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Insect Molecular Biology 8, 1-8.
SP Foster & AL Devonshire (1999) Field-simulator study of insecticide resistance conferred by esterase-, MACE- and kdr-based mechanisms in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Sulzer). Pesticide Science 55, 1-5.
AM Dewar, LA Haylock, J Campbell, Z Harling, SP Foster & AL Devonshire (1998) Control in sugar beet of Myzus persicae with different insecticide resistance mechanisms. Aspects of Applied Biology 52, 407-414.
AL Devonshire, LM Field, SP Foster, GD Moores, MS Williamson & RL Blackman (1998) The evolution of resistance in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae. Discussion Meeting on Insecticide Resistance: from Mechanisms to Management. Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society B. 353, 1677-1684.
SP Foster, I Denholm, ZK Harling, GD Moores & AL Devonshire (1998) Intensification of insecticide resistance in UK field populations of the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae) in 1996. Bulletin of Entomological Research 88, 127-130.
SP Foster, R Harrington, AL Devonshire, I Denholm, SJ Clark & MA Mugglestone (1997) Evidence for a possible fitness trade-off between insecticide resistance and the low temperature movement that is essential for survival of UK populations of Myzus persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Bulletin of Entomological Research 87, 573-579.
LM Field, AP Anderson, I Denholm, SP Foster, ZK Harling, N Javed, D Martinez-Torres, GD Moores, MS Williamson & AL Devonshire (1997) Use of biochemical and DNA diagnostics for characterising multiple mechanisms of insecticide resistance in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae (Sulzer). Pesticide Science 51, 283-289.
SP Foster, R Harrington, AL Devonshire, I Denholm, GJ Devine, MG Kenward & JS Bale (1996) Comparative survival of insecticide-susceptible and resistant peach-potato aphids, Myzus persicae (Sulzer) (Hemiptera: Aphididae), in low temperature field trials. Bulletin of Entomological Research 86, 17-27.
AS Gilburn, SP Foster & TH Day (1993) Genetic correlation between a female mating preference and the preferred male character in seaweed flies (Coelopa frigida). Evolution 47, 1788-1795.
AS Gilburn, SP Foster & TH Day (1992) Female mating preference for large size in Coelopa frigida (seaweed fly). Heredity 69, 209-216.
TH Day, SP Foster & KD Pitafi (1992) The counteraction of sexual and natural selection in seaweed flies. Genetics: Life Science Advances 11, 51-58.
H Day, SP Foster & G Engelhard (1990) Mating behavior in seaweed flies (Coelopa frigida). Journal of Insect Behavior 3, 105-120.
SP Foster & TH Day (1989) Further evidence for mate choice in the seaweed fly, Coelopa frigida. Heredity 63, 279.
G Engelhard, SP Foster & TH Day (1989) Genetic differences in mating success and female choice in seaweed flies (Coelopa frigida). Heredity 62, 123-131.
PhD in Genetics (Nottingham University, UK)
BSc in Biology (York University, UK)
Measures of esteem
- Chair of IRAG-UK
- Invited lecture: Micro-evolutionary change in relation to insecticide resistance in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae. See more invited presentations below>
- Co-organiser of Conference and Chaiman of session: Resistance 2007, Harpenden UK
- PhD examiner: External examiner for Norwegain PhD student(Oslo)
- Invited Lecture: Handicaps and survival of the fittest in insectici
- Organiser and Chairman of session at BCPC
- Invited Lecture: Insecticide resistance in Myzus persicae in the UK
- Invited Lecture: Vulnerability of insecticide-susceptible and â??resistant aphids to parasitoid attack
- Co-organiser and Chairman of session at ICE
- Invited Lecture: Efficacy of neonicotinoids and pymetrozine against peach-potato aphids carrying various forms of insecticide resistance
- Secretary, UK Insecticide Resistance Action Group
- Invited Lecture: Ecological implications of insecticide resistance in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae in the UK.
- Invited Lecture: Challenges with managing insecticide resistance in the aphid Myzus persicae. International Congress of Entomology
- Invited Lecture: The ups and downs of insecticide resistance in the peach-potato aphid, Myzus persicae
- Fellow of the Royal Entomological Society, UK: