Eva Drukker (MSc) is from the Netherlands and studied biology at Wageningen University. She did her internship research at the Bureau Stadsnatuur, studying arthropods on green roofs. In March, just before the Corona outbreak, she started her PhD on this topic supervised by Prof. Eric Schranz, Casper Quist and me. For the coming four years she will be studying these new ecosystems in our urban landscape. Among other things she is trying to unravel the complicated interactions that take place in these elevated habitats. Besides her research, she is very fond of and experienced in teaching and therefore takes part in two courses that we give at Biosystematics Group.
Eddie Griese's second paper on 'Plant responses to butterfly oviposition partly explain preference-performance relationships on different brassicaceous species' is under review but the preprint is available on BioRxiv https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/706044v1
So far it was well perceived and #1 paper in Ecology in BioRxiv when published https://twitter.com/assert_pub/status/1156132809125351424
10 years after collecting new Trichogramma wasps from passion-vine butterflies in a tropical rain-forest in Panama we manage to identify and describe them! Without no doubt, this is a classical Biosystematics publication!
On Monday 19th of November, our 5th user committee meeting took place. This meeting marked our halfway point, we are now two years underway with the NWO/TTW VIDI-funded project on pest-killing plants.
Compared to previous meetings, the Vidi team had decreased a bit in size, Setareh Mohammadin has gone on maternity leave, Gabriella Bukovinskine Kiss went to work full time at the Laboratory of Genetics, and visiting PhD student Xiuji Wang returned to China. Luckily, several students are joining our team in the coming weeks and a new research and education assistant is being recruited at the moment.
Representatives of all companies in the user committee were present and gave good feedback on our results. We were also happy to see the addition of Klaas Bouwmeester to our committee. Klaas has a strong background in phytopathology and is now a researcher in the Biosystematics group.
Niccolò and Lotte presented their work of the last 7 months. Niccolo showed his work on screening a population of Brassica rapa for egg-triggered necrosis. With the help of many lab members a Brassica rapa population was screened for Large Cabbage White egg-triggered necrosis. Niccolo has also improved methods to perform automated imaging, segmentation and quantification of lesion size. His work will continue using this method to map the response in B. rapa. Lotte presented work on the identification of the elicitor of the egg-triggered response. She was able to zoom in on the compound that triggers the response in plants. In the coming months, both parts of the project promise to give exciting results. @LotteCaarls