Research highlights incredible insects during National Insect Week

Insects, bugs, creepy-crawlies - there are some who say they are not always the cutest critters, but they can certainly be one of the most useful and resourceful.

National Insect Week’ urges everyone to consider the importance and benefits of insects. They can have significant roles in maintaining environmental sustainability and in helping to advance science – along with adding to the diversity of fauna around us.

To mark ‘National Insect Week’ a new feature explores a handful of occasions over the last few years where insects and our University’s students and staff worked hand-in-hand to promote sustainability awareness, educational opportunity and make substantial strides in science. The feature explores:

  • The establishment of the ‘Bug Hotel’ by our University’s Environmental Team (2014-present)

  • Dr Tom Matheson and colleagues in the Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour use insects to shed light on possible prosthetic limb development (2013)
  • Dr Carlo Breda in our Department of Genetics leads an international team of researchers in a five-year study into how symptoms of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease could be reversed in fruit flies (2011-2016)

‘National Insect Week’ may come and go annually, but the significance of insects extend far beyond a single week. With projects and studies such as those discussed here it is important for us all to create more of a buzz about bugs.