Unia Europejska

foto Piotr Ślipiński


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 Main Research Interest

  •  social parasitism in ants
  •  myrmecophily
  •  interactions between ants and fungi
  •  ant biodiversity
  •  division of labour in social insects
  •  development of personality in ants



Current projects

  • Susceptibility of ant colonies for social parasitism and the impact of social parasites on host colony fitness (NCN: UMO-2012/04/S/NZ8/00218). In this project I study the effect of social parasites on ant colony fitness and arm race between Myrmica host ants and their social parasites Maculinea butterflies. I also try to look which ant colony traits can make them more prone for social parasitism.
  • Influence of goldenrod invasion on Myrmica ant colony life history traits.
  • Relationship between Myrmica ants and their parasitic fungus Rickia wasmannii.
  • Studies on inquiline social parasite- Myrmica karavajevi.



Sielezniew M., Patricelli D., Rutkowski R., Witek M., Bonelli S., Buś M.M. 2015. Population genetics of the endangered obligatorily myrmecophilous butterfly Phengaris (= Maculinea) arion in two areas of its European range. Insect Conservation and Diversity doi: 10.1111/icad.12129.


Witek M,Barbero F., Marko B.(2014) Myrmica ants host highly diverse parasitic communities: from social parasites to microbes. Insectes Sociaux, 61: 307-323.


Kajzer-Bonk J., Nowicki P., Bonk M., Skórka P., Witek M., Woyciechowski M. (2013). Local populations of endangered Maculinea (Phengaris) butterflies are flood resistant. Journal of Insect Conservation 17: 1105-1112.


Bonelli S., Vrabec V., Witek M., Barbero F., Patricelli D., Nowicki P. (2013) Selection on dispersal in isolated butterfly metapopulations. Population Ecology 55: 469-478.


Lenda M., Witek M., Skórka P, Moroń D, Woyciechowski M. (2013) Invasive alien plants affect grassland ant communities, colony size and foraging behavior. Biological Invasions, 15: 2403-2414.


Skórka P., Nowicki P., Kudłek J., Pępkowska A., Śliwińska E.B., Witek M., Settele J., Woyciechowski M. (2013) Movements and flight morphology in the endangered Large Blue butterflies. Central European Journal of Biology, 8: 662-669.


Skórka P., Nowicki P., Lenda M., Witek M., Śliwińska E.B., Settele J., Woyciechowski M. (2013) Different flight behaviour of the endangered scarce large blue butterfly Phengaris teleius (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) within and outside its habitat patches. Landscape Ecology, 28: 533-546.


Witek M., Casacci L.P., Barbero F., Patricelli D., Sala M., Bossi S., Maffei M., Woyciechowski M., Baletto E., Bonelli S. (2013) Interspecific relationships in co-occurring populations of social parasites and their host ants. Biological Journal of Linnean Society 109: 699-709.


Patricelli D., Sielezniew M., Ponikwicka-Tyszko D., Ratkiewicz M., Bonelli S., Barbero F., Witek M., Bus M., Rutkowski R., Balletto E. (2013) Contrasting genetic structure of rear edge and continuous range populations of a parasitic butterfly infected by Wolbachia. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 13, article number 14. 


Witek M., Babik H., Czechowski W., Czechowska W. 2013. Myrmica karavajevi (Arn.) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Poland: a species not as rare as it is thought to be? Fragmenta Faunistica, 56: 17–24.


Barbero F., Patricelli D., Witek M., Balletto E., Casacci P.L., Sala M., Bonelli S. (2012) Myrmica ants and their butterfly parasites with special focus on the acoustic communication Psyche special issue -Ants and their parasites, 2012: 11pp.


de Assis R.A., Bonelli S., Witek M.,  Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Balletto E., Venturino E., Ferreira W.C. (2012) A model for the evolution of parasite-host interactions based on the Maculinea-Myrmica system: Numerical simulations and multiple host behavior. Nonlinear Analysis-Real World Applications, 13: 1507-1524.


Witek M., Canterino S., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2012) Life cycle and growth pattern of the endangered myrmecophilous Microdon myrmicae (Diptera: Syrphidae). European Journal of Entomology, 109 (3): 457-461.


Bonelli S., Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Cerrato C., Patricelli D., Vovlas A., Witek M., Balletto E. (2011) Butterfly diversity in a changing scenario. In: Changing diversity in changing environment, Eds. By Grill O, (Belgdar, INTECH Open Access Publisher), 99-132.


Particelli D., Barbero F., La Morgia V., Casacci L.P., Witek M., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2011) To lay or not to lay: oviposition of Maculinea arion in relation to Myrmica ant presence and host plant phenology. Animal Behaviour, 82: 791-799.


Witek M., Skórka P., Śliwinska B.E., Nowicki P., Moroń D., Settele J., Woyciechowski M. (2011) Development of parasitc Maculinea teleius (Lepidoptera, Lycaenidae) in laboratory nests of four Myrmica ant host species. Insectes Sociaux, 58: 403-411.


Bonelli S., Witek M., Canterino S., Sielezniew M., Stankiewicz-Fiedurek A., Tartally A., Balletto E., Schӧnrogge K. (2011) Distribution, host specificity and the potential for cryptic speciation in hoverfly Microdon myrmicae (Diptera: Syrphidae), a social parasite of Myrmica ants. Ecological Entomology, 36: 135-143.


Witek M., Particelli D., Casacci L.P., Barbero F., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2011) Notes on the biology and host ant specificity of the myrmecohhilous syrphis fly Microdon major (Diptera: Syrphidae), a social parasite of Formica ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology, 57: 261-269.


Casacci L.P., Witek M., Barbero F, Patricelli D., Solazzo, G., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2011) Habitat preferences of Maculinea arion and its Myrmica host ants: implications for habitat management in Italian Alps. Journal of Insect Conservation, 15 (1-2): 103-110.


Witek M., Nowicki P., Śliwinska B.E., Skórka P, Settele J, Schӧnrogge K, Woyciechowski M. (2010) Local host ant specificity of Phengaris (Maculinea) teleius butterfly, an obligatory social parasite of Myrmica ants. Ecological Entomology, 35: 557-564.



Patricelli D., Witek M., Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Bonelli S., Balletto E. (2010) Evidence

of high larval host ant specificity in the first post adoption phase for the myrmecophilous

butterfly Phengaris (Maculinea) nausithous (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae). Sociobiology, 55

(3): 861-870.


Sielezniew, M., Patricelli D., Dziekańska I., Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Witek M.,

Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2010) The first record of M. lonae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) as a host of socially parasitic Blue butterfly Phengaris (Maculinea) arion. Sociobiology, 56(2): 465-475.


Witek M., Śliwińska E. B., Skórka P., Nowicki P., Wantuch M., Vrabec V., Settele J.,

Woyciechowski M. (2008). Host ant specificity of Large Blue butterflies Phengaris

(Maculinea) (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) inhabiting humid grasslands of East-central

Europe. European Journal of Entomology, 105: 871 – 877.


Śliwińska E. B., Witek M., Skórka P., Osikowski A., Woyciechowski M. (2008). The

frequency of multiple paternity in Myrmica scabrinodis from southern Poland.

Entomological Science, 11, 127-129.


Moron D., Witek M., Woyciechowski M. (2008). Division of labour among workers

with different life expectancy in ant Myrmica scabrinodis. Animal Behaviour, 75, 345-



Nowicki P, Pępkowska A, Kudłek J, Skórka P, Witek M, Settele J, Woyciechowski, M.

(2007). From metapopulation theory to conservation recommendations: lessons from spatial occurrence and abundance patterns of Maculinea butterflies. Biological Conservation, 140 (2), 119-129.


Witek M., Śliwinska E., Skórka P., Nowicki P., Settele J., Woyciechowski M (2006)

Polymorphic growth in larvae of Maculinea butterflies, as an example of biennialism in

myrmecophilous insects. Oecologia, 148, 729-733


Skórka P., Witek M., Woyciechowski M (2006) A simple and nondestructive method

for estimation of worker population size in Myrmica ant nests. Insectes Sociaux, 53: 97-



Śliwinska, E.B., Nowicki, P., Nash, D.R., Witek, M., Settele, J &Woyciechowski, M (2006) Morphology of caterpillars and pupae of European Maculinea species (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) with an identification table. Entomologica Fennica, 17: 351-358.


Nowicki P., Witek M., Skórka P., Woyciechowski M (2005) Oviposition patterns in

the myrmecophilous butterfly Maculinea alcon in relation to characteristic of foodplants

and presence of ant hosts. Polish Journal of Ecology, 53 (3): 409-417.


Nowicki P., Witek M., Skórka P., Woyciechowski M., Settele J (2005) Population

ecology of endangered butterflies Maculinea teleius and M. nausithous, and its

conservation implications. Population Ecology, 47 (3): 193-202. 


Dubiec A., Witek M., Cichoń M. (2005) Seasonal decline in leukocyte concentration

and reproductive output in female Great Tits. The Auk, 122 (3): 829-834.




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Main research interest: Biodiversity

Taxonomy of ants

Ants biodiversity research

Urban Ecology of ants

Ants as bioindicator group in natural and urban environments


PhD thesis: “Role Of Urban Green Spaces In Global Strategies Of Conservation Using Ants As Bioindicators”

Master thesis: “First checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of Campillos Lagoons Nature Reserve (Malaga)”

Conference presentations

Trigos Peral G & Reyes-López JL (September, 2013). Formícidos del Campus de Rabanales de la Universidad de Córdoba (Andalucía, España). Póster. Sevilla, España.

Trigos Peral G, Reyes-López JL & Witek M (March, 2015). First list of ants of Natural Park of Sierra Tejeda, Almijara y Alhama (Andalusia, Spain): A new environment to discover. Póster. Lichtenfels, Germany.

Trigos Peral G, Babik H, Grzés I, Morón D, Casacci LP, Walter B, Ślipiński P, Witek M (March, 2013). Influence of goldenrod invasion on ant species diversity and colony life history traits. Ponencia. Lichtenfels, Germany.

Trigos Peral G & Reyes-López JL (August, 2015). Ants in urban green: Their relationship with the environment in a 10-year study in the south of the Iberian Peninsula. Ponencia. Debrecen, Hungary.


Pracownia Technik Molekularnych i Biometrycznych

Pokój 314

Tel. 22 629 32 21, wewn. 156

e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Kopalny DNA, genetyka populacyjna człowieka, archeogenetyka, antropologia



2011-2014 studia doktoranckie i stopień naukowy doktora – School of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney

2007-2009 studia magisterskie i dyplom magistra – Instytut Genetyki i Biotechnologii, Wydział Biologii, Uniwersytet Warszawski

2004-2007 studia licencjackie i dyplom licencjata – Instytut Genetyki i Biotechnologii, Wydział Biologii, Uniwersytet Warszawski


Strona www  / Homepage 

Lista publikacji naukowych / Publications


dr Hanna Panagiotopoulou

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Tel. 22 629 32 21, wew. 156

Research interests:

Conservation and population genetics, genetic research on sturgeon, ancient DNA


  1. Panagiotopoulou H, Austin JD, Zalewska K, Gonciarz M, Czarnogórska K, Gawor J, Weglenski P, Popovic D (2017) Microsatellite Mutation Rate in Atlantic Sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus). Journal of Heredity (in press).

  2. Adamek D, Rzepkowska M, Panagiotopoulou H, Ostaszewska T, Kamaszewski M, Kolman R, Fajkowska M (2017) Morphological differences of white muscle fibers and genetic diversity of fast and slow growing Atlantic sturgeons (Acipenser oxyrinchus). Turkish Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, in press.

  3. Panagiotopoulou H, Baca M, Baca K, Sienkiewicz P, Ślipiński P, Żmihorski M (2016) Genetic identification of a non-native species introgression into wild population of the field cricket Gryllus campestris (Orthoptera: Gryllidae) in Central Europe. European Journal of Entomology 113: 446–455.

  4. Krajcarz M, Makowiecki D, Krajcarz MT, Masłowska A, Baca M, Panagiotopoulou H, Romańska A, Bednarczyk J, Gręzak A, Sudoł M (2015) On the trail of the oldest domestic cat in Poland. An insight from morphometry, ancient DNA and radiocarbon Datong International Journal of Osteoarchaeology. DOI: 10.1002/oa.2471.

  5. Popovic D, Baca M i Panagiotopoulou H (2015) Complete mitochondrial genome sequences of Atlantic sturgeon, Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus, Gulf sturgeon, A. o. desotoi and European sturgeon A. sturio (Acipenseriformes: Acipenseridae) obtained through next generation sequencing. Mitochondrial DNA, 28:1-3.

  6. Panagiotopoulou H, Baca M, Baca K, Stankovic A i Żmihorski M (2015) Optimization and validation of a multiplex assay for microsatellite loci analysis in the field cricket, Gryllus campestris (Orthoptera: Gryllidae). Journal of Asia-Pacific Entomology 18, 421–424.

  7. Panagiotopoulou H, Popovic D, Kleszcz S, Stankovic A (2014) Ocena zmienności genetycznej narybku certy użytego do zarybień dorzecza Wisłoki. Conference materials „Wylęgarnia 2014”: „Wylęgarnictwo organizmów wodnych a bioróżnorodność” eds. Z. Zakęś, K. Demska-Zakęś, A. Kowalskiej, Olsztyn 2014; 89-103.

  8. Panagiotopoulou H, Popovic D, K Zalewska, P Weglenski, Stankovic A (2014) Microsatellite multiplex assay for the analysis of Atlantic sturgeon populations. Journal of Applied Genetics, 55, 505–510.

  9. Popović D, Panagiotopoulou H, Baca M, Stefaniak K, Mackiewicz P, Makowiecki D, King TL, Gruchota J, Weglenski P, Stankovic A (2014) The history of sturgeon in the Baltic Sea. Journal of Biogeography, 41 (8), 1590–1602.

  10. Panagiotopoulou H, Baca M, Popovic D, Weglenski P, Stankovic A (2014) A PCR-RFLP based test for distinguishing European and Atlantic sturgeons. Journal of Applied Ichthyology 30, 14–17.

  11. Popovic D, Panagiotopoulou H, Kleszcz M, Baca M, Rutkowski R, Heese T, Weglenski P, Stankovic A (2013) Restitution of vimba (Vimba vimba, Cyprinidae) in Poland: genetic variability of existing and restored populations. Ichthyological Research, 60 (2), 149-158.

  12. Galimova DN, Popović D, Panagiotopoulou H, Askeyev IV, Askeyev OV (2013) Preliminary Results Of Ancient DNA Analysis Of Fish Remains From Archaeological Sites. The Third Russian Scientific Conference with International Participation. The dynamics of modern ecosystems in the Holocen, Kazan, Tatarstan Republic, Russia. Conference materials.

  13. Panagiotopoulou H, Popovic D, Stankovic A, Kolman R, Raczkowski M i Szczepkowski M (2012) Badania genetyczne biologicznego materiału wyjściowego do prac nad restytucją jesiotra bałtyckiego (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus Mitchill) w Polsce. Komunikaty Rybackie 6 (131), 15-18.

  14. Ławicki Ł, Panagiotopoulou H i Żmihorski M (2010) Występowanie gniewosza plamistego (Coronella austriaca Laurenti, 1768) w Dolinie Dolnej Odry. Chrońmy Przyr. Ojcz. 67 (5): 466–473.

  15. Kozakiewicz, M., Gortat, T., Panagiotopoulou, H., Gryczyńska – Siemiątkowska, A., Rutkowski, R., Kozakiewicz, A. and Abramowicz, K. (2009) Genetic spatial structure of two rodent species: bank vole (Myodes glareolus) and yellow-necked mouse (Apodemus flavicollis) – the role of distance and habitat barriers. Animal Biology 59 (2), 169-187.

  16. Popovic D, Panagiotopoulou H, Gruchota J, Makowiecki D, Węgleński P and Stankovic A, (2008). Program restytucji jesiotra w Polsce w oparciu o analizy antycznego DNA. Instytut Rybactwa Śródlądowego w Olsztynie, eds..  R. Kolmana i A. Kapusty, ISBN 978-83-60111-25-3, 203-210.

  17. Stanković A, Panagiotopoulou H, Węgleński P and Popović D (2007) Badania genetyczne nad jesiotrem w związku z programem jego restytucji w wodach Polski. Instytut Rybactwa Śródlądowego w Olsztynie, eds.. R. Kolmana, ISBN 978-83-60111-14-7, 21-23.

Popular science articles:

  1. Kaczmarczyk P i Panagiotopoulou H (2014) Certa - ryba niezwykła. Biologia w szkole, Czasopismo dla nauczycieli, April, 2, 26-32.

  2. Popović D i Panagiotopoulou H (2010) Markery genetyczne w ekologii molekularnej. Praca przeglądowa. Biologia w szkole. Czasopismo dla nauczycieli, July/August, 4, 324 (LXIII), 39-46.

  3. Michalska-Parda A i Panagiotopoulou H (2010) CSI w ekologii, czyli jak śledzić, przewidywać i wpływać na losy gatunków. Biologia w szkole, Czasopismo dla nauczycieli, Mai/June, 323 (LXIII), 5-18.

  4. Popovic D i Panagiotopoulou H (2008) Genetyczne podstawy restytucji jesiotra w Polsce. Biologia w szkole, czasopismo dla nauczycieli, March/April, 311 (2). Biologia w szkole. Czasopismo dla nauczycieli.


Research projects:

2011-2015      Grant KBN NR N N304 174140 regarding the Phylogeographic analysis of the European and Atlantic sturgeon in Europe and North America. Head of the Project.

2011-2014      Project POIS-05.02.00-00-182/09-00 regarding restoration of the Wisłoka’s River and its tributaries ecological corridor patency. Contractor.

2010-2015      Grant MNiSW NR 12012910 regarding the modern technologies in sturgeons rearing. Contractor.

2010-2015      Grant ZPB/62/72380/IT2/10 regarding genetic analysis of commercially important fish species in context of their population recovery in Polish waters. Contractor.

2009-2013      Grant KBN NN304 145537 regarding the Genetic, behavioral and morphologic consequences of clear-cuts colonization by the typical open habitat species – field cricket. Contractor.

2007-2014      Project finance by the UE „Fish 2007-2013” regarding the optimization rearing of Atlantic sturgeon and its experimental shocking. Contractor.