Specialisation Cell Biology and Molecular Interactions

This specialisation focusses on the smallest building blocks of life.

What will you learn?

In the Cell Biology and Molecular Interactions specialisation, students study processes at a molecular and/or cellular level using modern, state of the art research techniques in order to understand complex biological processes and phenomena such as for example evolution, aging, symbiosis, bio-interactions, physiology and immunology.


Students follow two specialisation courses. You have to choose at least one course from RO1A (courses about literature and scientific analysis) and one course from RO1B (courses that develop research skills relevant for the scientific discipline of the specialisation). The specialisation offers more than two courses, providing opportunities for further specialisation. Students also have the option of following more courses related to their specialisation within their free choice or to perform a second thesis research project.

Control of Cellular Processes and Cell Differentiation (MOB): The cell strategy to regulate cell processed stands central. Immunotechnology (CBI): Immunotechnology focuses on the use of modern biotechnology to design immune intervention strategies that are based on a thorough knowledge of immunological mechanisms.
Genomics (ABG): The course discusses the structure and function of genomes of living organisms from all kingdoms. Genetic Analysis Trends and Concepts (GEN): This advanced course explains the most important genetic concepts to unravel and understand complex biological phenomena.
Comparative Biology and Systematics (BIS): The course focuses on the analysis of comparative data, at and above the species level. Molecular Aspects of Bio-interactions (PHP): The course focuses on the molecular basis of the interactions of plants with attackers, and beneficial organisms.
Advanced Cellular Imaging Techniques (CLB): In this practical course the principles and cell biological application of different microscopy techniques will be taught.

Thesis and internship

In the second year you will start your own research (thesis) in one of the following chair groups:

You can find examples of thesis subjects at the bottom of this page.

In the second half of your second year you will go on an internship. This can be a project at a company or organization outside Wageningen University.

Thesis examples

Chair group Entomology

  • Foraging behaviour of predators and parasites
  • What chemicals are induced in plants by herbivory, what is their effect on arthropod behaviour, and how do the cues affect interactions in the community?
  • Behavioural ecology of predator avoidance: how do predator cues affect prey behaviour?

Chair group Microbiology

  • Development of genetic systems for syntrophic bacteria
  • Exploring microbial diversity of marine sponges using 16S rRNA High-Throughput methods
  • Genomic analysis of symbionts to understand the nature of symbiosis

Chair group Nematology

  • Virulence of soil-borne pathogens and invasion by Prunus serotina
  • A ribosomal DNA-based framework for the detection and quantification of stress-sensitive nematode families in terrestrial habitats

Chair group Phytopathology

Chair group Cell Biology

  • The role of opioids in protective immune responses of carp
  • Modulation of immune response through Low Frequency Electromagnetic Field (LF EMF) exposure