Fang (Rose) Zhu

Fang (Rose) Zhu

  • Assistant Professor of Entomology
121A Chemical Ecology Lab
University Park, PA 16802


  • B.S., Shandong Agricultural University, 1999
  • M.S., China Agricultural University, 2002
  • Ph.D., Auburn University, 2007


ENT497 Pesticide Toxicology (3 credits)
ENT596 Independent Study (1 credit)
ENT530 Seminar (1 credit)

• Seeking MS/PhD students •


The primary emphasis of our research is to understand the mechanisms and evolution of insects’ adaptation to chemical stresses in their environment. Insects are the most evolutionarily successful metazoans on the Earth. The remarkable success of insects is largely due to their adaptive capabilities in coping with numerous stresses. The radiation of insects into diverse ecological niches has enhanced their risk to be exposed to toxic or otherwise life-threatening conditions. In their natural environment, insects have to face extensive chemical pressure from their hosts, predators, parasitoids, competitors, and many other abiotic factors such as pesticides. The long-term goals of our research are discovering new theories of insect chemical adaptation, along with developing innovative techniques and strategies for precision pest management and beneficial species conservation. Our research uses integrative approaches from molecular and evolutionary biology, functional genomics, behavior, bioinformatics, protein chemistry, and structural biology.  

Research Interests

Xenobiotic adaptation, insect toxicogenomics, insect molecular biophysics

Lab Opportunities

Google scholar

* Undergraduate or high school students mentored
** Graduate students or scholars mentored

Selected Publications


Wei H, Tan S, Li Z, Li J, Moural T**, Zhu F, Liu X. 2020. Odorant degrading carboxylesterases modulate adult and larval behaviors in Grapholitha molesta (Busck). Chemosphere (in revision)

Ban L**, Li J, Yan M, Gao Y, Zhang J, Moural TM**, Zhu F, Wang X. 2020. Illumina sequencing of 18S/16S rRNA reveals microbial community composition, diversity, and potential pathogens in turfgrass seeds. Plant Disease (accepted)

Phan N, Joshi NK, Rajotte EG, López-Uribe MM, Zhu F, Biddinger DJ. 2020. A new ingestion bioassay protocol for assessing pesticide toxicity to the adult Japanese orchard bee (Osmia cornifrons). Scientific Reports 10:1-9

Shen Z, Liu Y**, Zhu F, Cai L, Liu X-M, Tian Z, Chen J, Li Z, Liu X-X. 2020. MicroRNA-277 regulates dopa decarboxylase to control larval-pupal and pupal-adult metamorphosis of Helicoverpa armigera. Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology 122:103391

Adesanya AW**, Walters T, Lavine MD, Walsh DB, Lavine LC, Zhu F. 2020. Multiple insecticide resistance in onion thrips populations from Western USA. Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology 165:104553

Adesanya AW**, Cardenas A, Walsh DB, Lavine LC, Lavine MD, Zhu F. 2020. RNA interference of NADPH-Cytochrome P450 reductase increases susceptibilities to multiple acaricides in Tetranychus urticae. Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology 165:104550

Wu H, Liu Y, Shi X, Zhang X, Ye C, Zhu KY, Zhu F, Zhang J, Ma E. 2020. Transcriptome analysis of antennal cytochrome P450s and their transcriptional responses to plant and locust volatiles in Locusta migratoria. International Journal of Biological Macromolecules 149:741-753


Adesanya AW**, Beauchamp M, Lavine LC, Zhu F, and Walsh DB. 2019. Physiological resistance alters behavioral response of Tetranychus urticae to acaricides. Scientific Reports 9: 1-12

Adesanya AW**, Cardenas A*, Walsh DB, Lavine LC, Lavine MD, Zhu F. 2019. RNA interference of NADPH-Cytochrome P450 reductase increases susceptibilities to multiple acaricides in Tetranychus urticae. bioRxiv 780536

Cao C, Sun L, Du H, Moural TW**, Bai H, Liu P, Zhu F. 2019. Physiological functions of a methuselah-like G protein coupled receptor in Lymantria dispar Linnaeus. Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology 160: 1-1

Sun L, Liu P, Zhang C, Du H, Wang Z, Moural TW**, Zhu F, Cao C. 2019. Ocular albinism type 1 (OA1) regulates deltamethrin tolerance in Lymantria dispar and Drosophila melanogaster. Frontiers in Physiology 10, 766

Wu M**, Adesanya AW**, Morales MA*, Walsh D, Lavine L, Lavine M, Zhu F. 2019. Multiple acaricides resistance and underlying mechanisms in Tetranychus urticae on hops. Journal of Pest Science 92:543-555

Huang K, Chen W, Zhu F, Li PW, Kapahi P, Bai H. 2019. Ribo-Tag translatomic profiling of Drosophila oenocytes under aging and induced oxidative stress. BMC Genomics 20:50


Adesanya AW**, Franco E*, Walsh DB, Lavine MD, Lavine LC, Zhu F. 2018. Phenotypic and genotypic plasticity of acaricide resistance in populations of Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae) on peppermint and silage corn in the Pacific Northwest. Journal of Economic Entomology 111:2831-2843

Prior to Penn State

Adesanya AW**, Morales MA*, Walsh DB, Lavine LC, Lavine MD, Zhu F. 2018. Mechanisms of resistance to three mite growth inhibitors of Tetranychus urticae in hops. Bulletin of Entomological Research 108: 23-34  

Song L, Wang X, Huang J, Zhu F, Jiang X, Zhang S, Ban L**. 2017. Ultrastructure and morphology of antennal sensilla of the adult diving beetle Cybister japonicus Sharp. PloS One 12:e0174643

Moural TW, Lewis KM, Barnaba C, Zhu F, Palmer NA, Sarath G, Scully ED, Jones JP, Sattler SE, Kang C. 2017. Characterization of class III peroxidases from switchgrass (Panicum virgatum). Plant Physiology 173:417-433

Morales MA*, Mendoza BM*, Lavine LC, Lavine MD, Walsh DB, Zhu F. 2016. Selection of reference genes for expression studies of xenobiotic adaptation in Tetranychus urticae. International Journal of Biological Sciences 12:1129-1139

Song L, Jiang X, Wang X, Li J, Zhu F, Tu X, Zhang Z, Ban L**. 2016. Male tarsi specific odorant-binding proteins in the diving beetle Cybister japonicus Sharp. Scientific Reports 6:31848

Zhu F, Moural TW, Nelson DR, Palli SR. 2016. A specialist herbivore pest adaptation to xenobiotics through up-regulation of multiple Cytochrome P450s. Scientific Reports 6:20421

Benoit JB, Adelman ZN, Reinhardt K, Dolan A, Poelchau M, Jennings EC, Szuter EM, Hagan RW, Gujar H, Shukla J, Zhu F et al. 2016. Unique features of a global human ectoparasite identified through sequencing of the bed bug genome. Nature Communications 7:10165

Zhu F, Lavine LC, O’Neal S, Lavine M, Foss CR, Walsh DB. 2016. Insecticide resistance and management strategies in urban ecosystems. Insects 7, 2 (Invited review)

Piraneo T, Bull J, Morales MA*, Lavine LC, Walsh DB, Zhu F. 2015. Mechanisms of Tetranychus urticae chemical adaptation in hop fields. Scientific Reports 5:17090

Zhu F, Cui Y, Walsh DB, Lavine LC. 2014. Application of RNAi toward insecticide resistance management. In Short Views on Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, eds. R. Chandrasekar, B.K. Tyagi, Z. Gui and G.R. Reeck. Chapter 27, Vol.(2), pp 595-619 (Invited review)

Chandrasekar R, Brintha PG, Park EY, Pelsoi P, Liu F, Ling E, Goldsmith M, Ejiofor A, Pittendrigh, BR, Han, YS, Noriega FG, Sugumaran M, Tyagi BK, Gui Z, Zhu F, Patnaik BB, Michailova P. 2014. Introduction to insect molecular biology. In Short Views on Insect Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, eds. R. Chandrasekar, B.K. Tyagi, Z. Gui and G.R. Reeck. Chapter 1, Vol.(1), pp 3-56 (Invited review)

Zhu F, Moural TW, Shah K, Palli SR. 2013. Integrated analysis of cytochrome P450 gene superfamily in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum. BMC Genomics 14:174

Zhu F, Gujar H, Gordon JR, Haynes KF, Potter MF, Palli SR. 2013. Bed bugs evolved unique adaptive strategy to resist pyrethroid insecticides. Scientific Reports 3:1456

Zhu F, Sams S, Moural TW, Haynes KF, Potter MF, Palli SR. 2012. RNA interference of NADPH-Cytochrome P450 reductase results in reduced insecticide resistance in the bed bug, Cimex lectularius. PLoS One 7(2):e31037

Bai H, Zhu F, Shah K, Palli SR. 2011. Large-scale RNAi screen of G protein-coupled receptors involved in larval growth, molting and metamorphosis in the red flour beetle. BMC Genomics 12:388

Zhu F, Xu J, Palli R*, Ferguson J*, Palli SR. 2011. Ingested RNA interference for managing the populations of the Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata. Pest Management Science 67:175-182

Zhu F, Parthasarathy R, Bai H, Woithe K, Kaussmann M, Nauen R, Harrison DA, Palli SR. (2010) A brain-specific P450 responsible for the majority of deltamethrin resistance in the QTC279 strain of Tribolium castaneum. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 107:8557-8562

Zhu F, Wigginton J, Romero A, Moore A, Ferguson K*, Palli R*, Potter MF, Haynes KF, Palli SR. 2010. Widespread distribution of knockdown resistance mutations in the bed bug, Cimex lectularius (Hemiptera: Cimicidae), populations in the United States. Archives of Insect Biochemistry and Physiology 73:245-257

Zhu F, Li T, Zhang L, Liu N. 2008. Co-up-regulation of three P450 genes in response to permethrin exposure in permethrin resistant house flies, Musca domestica. BMC Physiology 8:18

Zhu F, Liu N. 2008. Differential expression of CYP6A5 and CYP6A5v2 in pyrethroid-resistant house flies, Musca domestica. Archives of Insect Biochemistry and Physiology 67:107-119

Zhu F, Feng J, Zhang L, Liu N. 2008. Characterization of two novel cytochrome P450 genes in insecticide-resistant house-flies. Insect Molecular Biology 17:27-37

Liu N, Liu H, Zhu F, Zhang L. 2007. Differential expression of genes in pyrethroid resistant and susceptible mosquitoes, Culex quinquefasciatus (S.). Gene 394:61-68

Liu N, Xu Q, Zhu F, Zhang L. 2006. Pyrethroid resistance in mosquitoes. Insect Science 13:159-166

Liu N, Zhu F, Xu Q, Pridgeon JW, Zhang L. 2006. Behavioral change, physiological modification, and metabolic detoxification: mechanisms of insecticide resistance. Acta Entomologica Sinica 49:671-679

Zhu F, Feng J, Zhang L, Liu N. 2005. Differential expression between resistant and susceptible house flies, Musca domestica. SAAS Bulletin Biochemistry 18:20-31

Research Interests

Chemical Ecology
Center for Pollinator Research
Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences