Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics

The Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics Unit (MBBU) provides relevant expertise to facilitate molecular biology and bioinformatics components of icipe research across themes, while also spearheading research projects that employ and develop cutting-edge molecular and bioinformatics techniques applicable to modern insect science. The unit includes general molecular biology laboratories, the Martin Lüscher Emerging Infectious Diseases (ML-EID) Laboratory facility and a bioinformatics hub.

MBBU is actively engaged in training and mentoring young scholars, as part of icipe's endeavour to equip future generations of scientists with skills that will enhance the use insect science to address Africa's current and future developmental needs. Current studies include understanding the ecology of plant and animal diseases, diversity and population genetics of medically and economically important arthropod taxa, pathogen and endosymbiont diagnostics, genomics and bioinformatics. MBBU has strong links across icipe’s themes, programmes and projects, as well as collaborations within Africa, Europe and North America. The MBBU staff and student population is multi-cultural and multi-national, providing an intellectually dynamic workspace. At any one time, there are five to 10 postgraduate students, as well as several interns in the Unit.

For further information, contact:

Jandouwe Villinger (, Head, MBBU