Edgar Huitema

Division of Plant Sciences

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Stefan Engelhardt

“Photosynthesis on the molecular level – this was the topic that triggered my huge interest in plant biochemistry already during high school. Plants, being sessile organisms, are exposed to a multitude of biotic and often pathogenicity factors, and for me it’s the most fascinating kind of research to figure out on the protein biochemical level how plants cope with these challenges.

Jasmine Pham

My career in the plant sciences began with me saying to my A-level biology teacher “plants are boring – why would anyone want to study them?” I soon realised that this was far from the truth and decided to specialise in plant sciences (in particular plant-microbe interactions) during the final year of my bachelor’s degree at Imperial College. I then went on to complete my Master’s degree at King’s College London where I studied the bacterial species present in the Arabidopsis phyllosphere under the supervision of Dr Ken Bruce and Dr Paul Devlin.

Graham Motion

Biology is a subject that I have always been interested in. After completing my HNC and HND in Applied Biological Sciences I went on to carry out my undergraduate degree in Molecular Biology at the University of Dundee. Throughout the course of my degree I became particularly interested in the way that pathogens interact with their hosts during the course of infections. This interest, coupled with the desire to find out more, led me to gain an SGM funded summer placement with Dr Nicola Holden at the James Hutton Institute.

Magdalena Delgado-Cerezo

I began to be interested in plants and their relationship with enviroment in my second year at university. In third year I studied plant physiology and then thought to myself that I wanted to dedicated my efforts to this subject. I was fascinated about how plants had adapted theirselves to enviroment challenges like weather extreme conditions or pathogens attack. How plants had learnt and learn day by day to defend theirselves from outdoor conditions. My experience in research started at the National Center of Biotechnology in Madrid with Dr. Pérez-Mellado where I did a Final Year Project.

Dirk van Vugt

Research Interests

My name is Dirk van Vugt, and I recently joined the Huitema lab for my internship of 5 months. This internship is part of my education Life Science at the University of Arnhem and Nijmegen (HAN). Here I study for my Bachelor programme and need to do two internships as a part of study.

Andrew Howden

I’m a plant molecular biologist with an interest in plant signal transduction and the mechanisms by which plants respond to their environment. I’m especially interested in the use of protein biochemistry and proteomics to examine plant-microbe interactions.

Brian Rigney


I joined this lab team as part of my Mres project. I have a Bsc in biotechnology which I obtained from N.U.I.Galway. I was reared on an Irish dairy farm where at an early age I developed a keen interest in agriculture. But as I was going through school I found myself going down the path of science and when the time came for me to choose a possible career path I choose biotechnology.


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