Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Department of Plant Protection Biology

Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Mattias Larsson

Researcher/Associate prof
Chemical ecology
V building

+46 40 41 53 10
+46 732 44 53 88
Fax +46 40 46 21 66

Postal address
Dept. of Plant Protection Biology 
Box 102
SE-230 53 Alnarp

Visiting address                         Delivery address
Sundsvägen 14                           Växtskyddsvägen 3


M.Sc. Lund University. 1997
Ph.D. Lund University. 2001


My broad scientific interest is the evolution of olfactory and other sensory signals, the function of olfactory systems, and the application of olfactory attractants in conservation biology and pest management. In this context I study production and perception of olfactory signals, at different levels of evolution, genetics, sensory physiology and behaviour. I study these questions in a broad range of insect species and host systems, in order to understand how insects adapt to different olfactory environments. I also study many aspects of pollination systems from both a flower-insect communication perspective, and the interaction between flower individuals in the meeting of pollen and pistil.

I study the olfactory system of the fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, and other drosophilid flies: the function of their olfactory systems and how this relates to their odour worlds. By performing targeted modifications in Drosophila, I study the function of specific components of the olfactory system.

Another main model system is the olfactory system and host selection mechanisms in the generalist noctuid moth Spodopteralittoralis: Variation in host preference hierarchies, including olfactory preferences and physiological adaptations to host plants, in relation to its polyphagous life style. Identification and characterization of its olfactory receptor genes, in collaboration with INRA Versaillses, France. Invasive potential and its impact on chemosensory information networks in novel environments within the ESF-funded INVAVOL project.

Among applied projects I have also initiated the PheroBio-project for monitoring of threatened insects with large-scale trapping based on pheromones and other semiochemicals in a landscape perspective. Our model systems include a broad range of saproxylic species, including the hermit beetle Osmoderma eremita, the click beetle Elater ferrugineus, several species of longhorn beetles and saproxylic moths. We also work with insects relevant to agricultural landscapes, such as burnet moths.

Together with collaborators at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia I also study the application of techniques for monitoring and control of insect pests, including the invasive chafer Pachnoda interrupta and the fruit fly Bactrocera invadens.


BI 1063, Ecology 10 HP, Head teacher, course administrator.
Link to latest course (2013):

KE 0059 Kemi, Ekologi och Statistik 15 HP, teaching Ecology
Link to latest course (2013):

BI 1143 Odlingssystem i trädgårdsföretag 15 HP, teaching plant protection: insects and other pests
Link to latest course (2013):

BI 1148 Växtskydd, grundkurs 7 HP, teaching plant protection: insects and other pests
Link to latest course (2013):


Selected publications

Musa N, Andersson K, Burman J, Andersson F, Hedenström E, Jansson N, Paltto H, Westerberg L, Winde I, Larsson MC, Bergman K-O, Milberg P. 2013. Using sex pheromone and a multi-scale approach to predict the distribution of a rare saproxylic beetle. PLoS ONE 8:e66149

Thöming G, Larsson MC, Hansson BS, Anderson P. 2013. Comparison of plant preference hierarchies of male and female moths and the impact of larval rearing hosts. Ecology 94:1744-1752

Lankinen Å, Larsson MC, Fransson A-M. 2013. Allocation to pollen competitive ability vs. seed production in Viola tricolor as an effect of plant size, soil nutrients and presence of a root competitor. Oikos 122:779-789

Jacquin-Joly E, Legeai F, Montagné N, Monsempes C, Francois MC, Poulain J, Gavory F, Walker III WB, Hansson BS, Larsson MC. 2012. Candidate chemosensory genes in female antennae of the noctuid moth Spodoptera littoralis. International Journal of Biological Sciences 8:1036-1050

Montagné N, Chertemps T, Brigaud I, Francois A, Francois MC, de Fouchier A, Lucas P, Larsson MC, Jacquin-Joly E. 2012. Functional characterization of a sex pheromone receptor in the pest moth Spodoptera littoralis by heterologous expression in Drosophila. European Journal of Neuroscience 36:2588-2596  

Complete list >>>

Page updated: 2013-11-01. Page editor:

SLU, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, has its main locations in Alnarp, Uppsala and Umeå.
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