Toby Kiers received her Phd from University of California, Davis in 2005 with a focus on Ecology, Evolution and Agriculture. She became a University Research Chair and Professor at the VU in January 2014.
Justin Stewart (they/he)
Justin is a PhD student interested in the ecological and evolutionary processes that control how microbial communities assemble and function across diverse environments. Likewise, their research involves geospatial analyses of how communities vary across time and space. Justin does this using molecular, remote sensing, and advanced statistical-machine learning methods backed by theoretical ecology.
Marije van Son is a research technician. Her main involvement is the propagation of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and the development of new sterile techniques for the culture collection.
Previously she worked as a cell biology assistant in a seeds company investigating plant propagation in a large variety of crops. These project mainly focused on creating new protocols, and how to apply these protocols in routine facilities.
Loreto Oyarte is a postdoc researcher studying the symbiotic association between plants and the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. She uses imaging techniques to describe, for example, the fungal network topology and the transport of nutrients inside the hyphae. Loreto studied Physics in Chile and received her PhD from the Physics of Fluid group at the University of Twente in 2017. She specialises in fluid dynamics and High-speed imaging techniques.
Malin is a PhD student interested in plant-microbe interactions in the rhizosphere of crop plants and their wild relatives with special emphasis on legumes under nutrient deprivation. She investigates the assembly of the root microbiome under biotic/abiotic stresses in wild and cultivated crop plants and the underlying mechanisms.
Simon Dupin is a Phd student in collaboration with Rene Geurts (WUR) working on the evolution of host control in the Parasponia-Rhizobium mutualism. He received his Masters from Université de Bordeaux in Biotechnology.
Anouk van t’padge is a Phd student studying the factors that regulate resource trade in the mycorrhizal symbiosis. She is also interested in historic reconstructions of symbioses, specifically among insects and their endosymbionts.
Bram Knegt is a Phd student co-supervised by Martijn Egas at UvAS. His research focuses on the plant-eating arthropod Tetranychus evansi – a spider mite. He is interested in the evolutionary forces driving aggressive behavior.
Victor Caldas is a post-doc researching foraging patterns and network connections of mycorrhizal hyphae. He is a biophysicist by training and studied single-molecule dynamics, developing new approaches to image analysis during his Phd at University of Groningen.
Gijsbert Werner is a former Phd student working on the evolution of mutualistic cooperation between plants and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. He is interested in the environmental context of stable cooperation and biological markets. He is now a Newton Fellow at University of Oxford.
Matt Whiteside is a former post-doc who used confocal microscopy, among other techniques, to visual nutrient trade in complex mycorrhizal networks. He is an analytical chemist by training from UC Irvine and focuses on developing new approaches to track resource trade across a diversity of organisms.
Roberta Fisher is a former post-doc with a background in the evolution of multicellularity and symbiosis. She is using comparative methods to understand what drives the formation of cooperative partnerships.
Jocelyn Behm is a former post-doc with a background in phenotypic plasticity, global change and species conservation. She is devising frameworks for predicting how species, including microbes, respond to change. She is now at Temple University.
Daniel Engelmoer is a former post-doc with a background in microbial experimental evolution. He worked on the evolutionary ecology of mycorrhizae and rhizobial cooperative interactions.He has now moved to working with industry.
Marie Duhamel was a Phd student (co-supervised with P. Vandenkoornhuyse) with a focus on microbial diversity in natural and agricultural ecosystems. She defended in November 2013 and continues to work on quantifying diversity.
Erik Verbruggen is a former Phd student (co-supervised with M. van der Heijden) with a focus on mycorrhizae, agricultural and transgenic crops. He is now working in Belgium looking at mycorrhizal dynamics in long-term agricultural plots.