New staff members, PhD candidates, guests and projects

We are proud to welcome new staff members, guest researschers and PhD students.

Nikkie van de Wielen – New staff member

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I am interested in gastrointestinal research. I have obtained my PhD on intestinal nutrient sensing at the department of Human Nutrition of WUR. This research was focused on cell biological mechanisms of nutrient sensing related to gut hormone release. Subsequently, I did a two year Post-doc at the department of Human Nutrition, mainly working on a new method for measuring protein digestibility using stable isotopes.

My hobbies are: food (cooking and eating), traveling (latest trips to Bolivia and Oman), sports.

Margreet Hekman – Guest

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I work part-time at Massey University in New Zealand where, after being an animal technician for a long time, the largest part of my job now is organizing and teaching the practical part of a 1st year animal physiology course. The other half of my time I’m undertaking a PhD in feline nutrition with a particular focus on the physiological effects of dietary water in the cat.

In my free time I like reading, hiking (or tramping as it’s called in New Zealand 😊), running, playing sports like ultimate frisbee, volleyball, and hopefully I’ll get to play a bit of korfball while I’m over here. I also really like travelling, and on my way back to New Zealand am planning to visit Italy (for leisure) and Zambia (for voluntary work at a primary school).

Marco Tretola - Guest

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I am a PhD student at the University of Milan, working on the project “Valorizing former foodstuffs into animal feed to reduce food loss”. I am involved in the nutritional evaluation and in vitro digestibility of former foodstuffs (ex-food) intended for pig nutrition. In addition, stereomicroscope and computer vision approaches have been used in the evaluation of packaging remnant contamination. I recently performed an in vivo trial to address also the impact of such ingredients on pig performance and pig gut microbiota.

When I need to relax, I like to play piano or to paint. I like also spend time with friends and watching TV series/movies. I hate pineapple pizza!

Fang Lyu – PhD student

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I will work at the Animal Nutrition Group on the project “Breaking behaviour of diet ingredients, equivalent particle size and its relationship with animal performance”.

I am a person who is full of curiosity about everything, so I would like to try different interesting things. I am into traveling, as it is a great way to explore the world and to experience different cultures. I am also a cat-person. I like cooking and watching movies and TV series during my spare time.

Jesse Heijmans – PhD student

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I am a PhD student at the Animal Nutrition Group in combination with the Adaptation Physiology Group for 2 days a week, the rest of the week I work at De Heus Animal Nutrition.

My project is focussed on the effect of broiler breeder nutrition on egg characteristics and chick quality. In this project we will focus on feeding strategies, which can alter body composition of broiler breeders during rearing and early lay.

In my free time I go running, hopefully able to run half a marathon this year, and swimming. I also love to spent time with family and friends.

Gavin Boerboom – PhD student

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I am a PhD student at the Animal Nutrition Group, but work at TrouwNutrition R&D.

My project investigates the effect of the source of trace minerals on the oxidative response and implications on energy partitioning.

I love doing sports and I spent on average 5 days a week with either football or going to the gym. I enjoy spending times with friends and going out for dinner or for movies.

Dengke Hua – PhD student

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I am a “Sandwich” PhD candidate of the Chinese Academy of Animal Science and Wageningen University Research, focusing on dairy cow nutrition.

My research is going to investigate the mechanism of Negative Energy Balance (NEB) during early lactation of dairy cows and its regulation methods through nutrients in order to decrease the impact of NEB on cows’ reproduction performance and health condition.
I am into doing sports, like running, cycling, traveling and playing badminton. I’m also a person who loves literature and art, watching movies, listening music and singing, et al. I like making friends, hope to know different cultures.

Huyen Nguyen Thi Duong Huyen – PhD student

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I am an external PhD candidate at the Animal Nutrition Group on the project “Evaluation of the nutritional value of local feedstuffs for dairy cattle in Vietnam”.

I am quite but friendly and open-minded. I enjoy cooking, shopping and hanging out with friends. At work, I am responsible for what I do. I am also punctual.