Symposium in honor of the 175th birthday of Hugo de Vries


This year marks the 175th anniversary of Hugo de Vries' birthday. Hugo de Vries, born in Haarlem, has left an important mark on Dutch and international plant science. He was one of the three re-discoverers of Mendel's laws and one of the founders of modern evolutionary biology. He worked as a professor in the Hortus of the University of Amsterdam for a long time.

In memory of Prof. De Vries and on the occasion of the presentation of the Hugo de Vries Prize, a Symposium was held on 8 June 2023 in the Hortus Amsterdam on Plantage Middenlaan.

Speakers at the symposium were Dr. Erik Zevenhuizen (UvA) who discussed the significance of Hugo de Vries and his fame, followed by Dr. Peter van Dijk (KeyGene) who explained the connection to Gregor Mendel. Prof. dr. Dr Ir. Corné Pieterse (Utrecht University) bridged the gap to the presentation of the Hugo de Vries Award with a lecture on the importance of the microbiome for plant health.

Hugo de Vries Award 2022 for Eline Ampt

The Hugo de Vries Prize is awarded annually to the best botanical thesis defended in the previous year; covering the full spectrum of botany. This year's prize was won by Dr. Eline Ampt (Wageningen University) for her thesis “Deciphering belowground plant-fungal interactions to understand the effects of biodiversity on disease risk” on the relationship between biodiversity and plant diseases in natural ecosystems. MiCRop PI Jos Raaijmakers was one of the promoters of her thesis. The jury was unanimous in its verdict, appreciating the high academic quality of the work, which has been published in leading journals. The jury also expressed its appreciation for the flexible writing style and the overall structure of the thesis. Despite the fact that the thesis consists of a series of bundled articles, it reads as a logical and well-cohesive whole. This makes it an exceptional academic achievement in both content and form.