Two new Dr. rer. nat. baptised: Dr. Soofia Khanahmadi and Dr. Naivy Yuvicel Nava Cruz

Today finally, we had doctoral baptism again when Dr. Soofia Khanahmadi and Dr. Naivy Nava were thrown into the pond in our inner courtyard by their colleagues. Now, their graduation really counts, and they are real doctors, ready to apply their skills, which they have acquired and honed over the past years, for their careers and for the benefit of our societies and our planet. Soofia had optimized the chitosan vaccination of plants against viral diseases, working with tobacco and tobacco mosaic virus. Naivy had optimised the chitosan vaccination against nematodes attacking their roots, working with tomato and the root knot nematode Meloidogyne incognita. Different chitosans turned out to be most effective in the two systems, and so were different methods of treatment. The functional and structural analyses of the chitosans were supported by our post-docs Dr. Carolin Richter and Dr. Stefan Cord-Landwehr, respectively, and the bioinformatic analyses by Dr. Ratna Singh and Dr. Philipp Lemke. Also of course, a number of students supported them and learned from them, and both were also supported by external collaborations, Soofia by Prof. Sybille Unsicker from the Max Planck Institute in Jena, and Naivy by Dr. Anne Vortkamp from Geisenheim University and, most prominently, by Prof. Johannes Hallmann from the Julius Kühn Institute, at the time in Münster, now in Braunschweig. Naivy will soon leave for Mexico to finally meet her family, friends, and dogs again, and Soofia will leave for Canada to finally join her husband there. But once they were baptised, we started talking about possibilities for future collaborations. So we hope and trust that your lives, dear Naivy and Soofia, will at some point lead you back to visit us in Münster.