Linda Abenaim

Supervisor: Prof. Barbara Conti

Research field: Entomology

Research interests: edible insects, plastivorous insects, Hermetia illucens, black soldier fly, chitosan extraction

Institute of Entomology, Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment, Via del Borghetto 80, 56124 Pisa. 


Linda Abenaim is a PhD student in the “PhD Program in Agriculture, Food and Environment-XXXVI Cycle” at the Department of Agriculture, Food and Environment of the University of Pisa. She has got a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Science (2015-2018) and a master’s degree cum laude in Urban Green and Landscape Planning and Management (2018-2020) at the Department of Agricultural, Food and Environment of the University of Pisa. Her PhD research project in entomology aims to Hermetia illucens (Diptera Stratiomyidae) mass rearing for chitosan extraction, genome sequencing and possible biodegradation of polystyrene. During her PhD period, she acquired skills regarding edible insect species and in particular mass rearing, chitosan extraction, morphology and dissection, plastivorous behaviour, DNA and RNA extraction, and data analysis. She also works in the control of foodstuff pests by natural substances. She is involved in the European PRIMA project FEDKITO “FrEsh fooD sustainable pacKaging In The circular economy” (2020-2024), coordinated by her supervisor. In 2023, she performed 6 months at the Institute of Entomologie Fonctionnelle et Évolutive of Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech at the University of Liège (Belgium). During her PhD internship, she studied the microbiota and microbial functional enzyme analyses of Hermetia illucens reared on a polystyrene-contaminated diet compared with those of other plastivorous insects: Galleria mellonella and Tenebrio molitor. She speaks English (C1 level), French (B2 level) and Spanish (B1 level).  


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