Late afternoon on 15 December, Ying Liu from China was the lucky PhD graduate. Although pleased, she received her PhD without any festivities. During the 7500th PhD graduation in March last year, and although right after the outbreak of corona, PhD graduate Mark Roosjen still received a golden cylinder case for his PhD certificate.
Ying Liu had to make do with just the honour, but is nevertheless very pleased. ‘Eight is a lucky number in China and is associated with wealth.’ Liu received her doctorate for research into dyes in purple bell peppers. These pigments (anthocyanins) help against chronic inflammation. Liu figured out how the plant can be stimulated to turn and stay purple. The sweet pepper normally loses colour during ripening. Decoding purple pepper’s dress code is the playful title of her colourful thesis.
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