Canadian Forest Service employee directory

Michel Cusson

Research Scientist, Insect Physiology and Biochemistry
Laurentian Forestry Centre
1055 Du P.E.P.S. Street, P.O. Box 10380
Québec, Quebec, G1V 4C7

Tel.: (418) 648-3944


Research activities:

  • Study of forest insect pests and their natural enemies, particularly their genes and the proteins they encode.
  • Identify genes that constitute a strong link (natural enemies) or a weak link (insect pests) and may be used or targeted, respectively, in the development of pest control tools and strategies.

Whether indigenous or exotic, insect pests continually create new challenges in terms of forest protection, and so it is appropriate to assess the potential of genomics and biotechnologies as tools for developing effective, acceptable, environmentally friendly solutions to the various problems caused by harmful insects.

Main insect pests studied:

  • spruce budworm, Choristoneura fumiferana
  • brown spruce longhorn beetle, Tetropium fuscum
  • emerald ash borer, Agrilus planipennis
  • whitemarked tussock moth, Orgyia leucostigma
  • hemlock looper, Lambdina fiscellaria fiscellaria

Occasionally, we also use experimental models that are not of forest pests, because the latter are sometimes not all that suitable for a rapid assessment of some hypotheses.

Natural enemies studied:

  • Viruses (polydnaviruses) transmitted to spruce budworm by the endoparasitoid wasps Tranosema rostrale and Glypta fumiferana
  • Baculoviruses that infect budworms of the genus Choristoneura

Adjunct professor at (i) the Département de biochimie, de microbiologie et de bio-informatique and (ii) the Département de microbiologie-infectiologie et immunologie of Université Laval.

Collaborators from CFS

  • Genomics of emerald ash borer (collaboration in a project led by Daniel Doucet)
  • Viruses of budworms of the genus Choristoneura (collaboration in a project led by Christopher Lucarotti)


Degree in biology from the Université de Sherbrooke (1981), master’s degree in pest management from Simon Fraser University (1985), and Ph.D. in biology from Université Laval (1989). Postdoctoral training at the University of Toronto (laboratory of Professor Stephen S. Tobe)(1989-1991).


Canadian Forest Service research projects