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Aranka Margrethe van der Burgh was born on October 6th, 1986 in Vlaardingen. After she finished HAVO (2004), she went to Hogeschool Van Hall-Larenstein in Velp, to study Plant Biotechnology. She conducted her BSc thesis with Dr. Jan Schaart at the Department of Plant Breeding (Wageningen University & Research), working on the marker-free transformation of strawberry. After completing her BSc, she joined the group of Dr. Henk Schouten at the Department of Plant Breeding as a technician for three years. She worked on the development of cisgenic apples, with the aim to improve fungal resistance and to obtain red fruit flesh.
In 2011, she started the MSc Plant Biotechnology at Wageningen University. During her MSc thesis at the Department of Virology she investigated the possible interaction between a specific viral protein and plant proteins involved in defence against viruses. During the final four months of her MSc, she went to Cologne, Germany, for an internship at the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding (MPIPZ). Here, in the Plant Chemetics Group of Dr. Renier van der Hoorn, which moved to Oxford, UK, in 2014, she studied the plant proteasome and its inhibition during
In 2014, she started her PhD in the Solanaceae (SOL) group (Department of Phytopathology, Wageningen University & Research) under the supervision of Dr. Matthieu Joosten. The results of the conducted research are described in her PhD thesis and several publications.
After a year at ClearDetections, where she worked on the development of detection assays for various plant pathogens, Aranka moved back to Plant Breeding, to work as PostDoctoral reseacher. Her interest lays in New Plant Breeding Techniques, and how to apply these techniques in important crops like Capsicum species. A specific line of research focusses on the application of nanoparticles for plant transformation.