Steven is a plant scientist working as a PhD student in the groups of Martijn Vandegehuchte and Thorsten Hamann.
The aim of his research is to identify and characterize genes involved in cell wall integrity in the woodland strawberry model. This plant species grows in a range of climates and in association with different herbivore and pathogen communities. It is therefore quickly gaining popularity as a model for plant adaptation. We hope to learn if and how the cell wall integrity maintenance system evolves to allow adaptation to different stresses. Ultimately, our work can provide novel leads for the knowledge-based improvement of plant varieties for agriculture and lead to new insights on the effects of climate change on plant fitness.
2019-2021 MSc Plant Biotechnology at Wageningen University. MSc thesis at the Laboratory of Plant Breeding on phylogenomics of lignin biosynthesis genes. Internship in plant-microbe interactions at the University of Zurich.