Vote for new Governing Board members

You can vote for new a  Governing Board member at the Symposium in Ghent.

Short bio of the three candidates:


Sara Sánchez Moreno

Researcher at the National Institute of Agriculture and Food Research and Technology (INIA, Madrid, Spain).

I am a doctor on Biology by the University of Alcalá, Spain. I developed my PhD at the Natural History Museum in Madrid studying soil nematode communities in heavy-metal polluted areas, and conducted post-doctoral research at the University of California at Davis, where I started working on agroecosystems focusing on the role of soil nematode diversity on various soil functions. Back in Spain, I joined the National Institute of Agriculture and Food Research and Technology, in which I was granted a Tenured Scientist position in 2010.

My research focuses on the role of beneficial nematodes in ecosystem services and the use of nematodes as bioindicators. I have been the PI of several projects, and I have been an invited speaker in national and international events (USA, UK, France), and supervised PhD and MSc students. I enjoy very much sharing my interest on nematodes and soil diversity with undergrad students too, and I have collaborated with the industry in the search of environmentally friendly pesticides. Currently, I am involved in several projects at national and international levels focused on long-term effects of tillage on soil communities, nematodes as indicators in tropical systems, and nematodes as indicators of climate change effects on the soil system. One of the most enjoyable parts of my job is meeting international students and colleagues and sharing with them interests and experiences, and becoming a member of the ESN governing board would be a wonderful way of doing so.


Sebastian Eves-van den Akker

Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge.


I was introduced to the world of nematology during my undergraduate project in the Plant nematology lab at the University of Leeds. Their enthusiasm got me hooked and they are largely to blame for everything that followed. From 2010 to 2014, I studied for a PhD at the University of Leeds and The James Hutton Institute, jointly supervised by Peter Urwin and John Jones. I learned the fundamentals of plant nematology and started to use bioinformatics to address biological questions, working on several genomes and transcriptomes including the first cyst nematode genome project.

In 2015, I secured an independent fellowship to continue my research on nematode “effectors” at the University of Dundee and the John Innes Centre, Norwich. Those institutions are renowned for their molecular research into plant–pathogen interactions and I wanted to borrow some of the techniques used in other plant-pathogen systems and apply them to plant nematology. For example, in collaboration with Paul Birch and Mark Banfield, we applied structural biology to solve the first crystal structures of plant parasitic nematode proteins.

During this time, I became interested in the regulatory processes underlying plant-nematode parasitism. Discoveries made while leading the Globodera rostochiensis genome consortium ultimately led to the award of a subsequent 5 year fellowship to establish a new nematology research group at the University of Cambridge. I understand it is more than 60 years since there was plant nematology at Cambridge (and those are big shoes to fill), but I look forward to the opportunity to pass on my enthusiasm to the next generation of nematologists. Current projects range from understanding the genomic regulation of parasitism to the elusive transformation “problem”, and we feel fortunate to be tackling these projects with our collaborators and colleagues around the world.

Throughout my academic career I have been a member of the ESN, and have benefited enormously from the support they offer young scientists. I’d like to join the board to give something back to the society that has helped me so much.


Shahid Masood Siddique

University of Bonn


I am a plant-nematode interaction researcher with a background in plant molecular biology and stress signalling. In 2004, I completed my master’s in botany at the Institute of Pure and Applied Biology, Bahauddin Zakariya University (BZU), Multan, Pakistan. In 2006, I moved to Vienna, Austria, to pursue a PhD at the Department of Plant Protection, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU), Vienna, Austria. It was at BOKU that I started my long-term association with nematodes and nematologists. My PhD research focused on characterising the role of the Arabidopsis MIOX (myo-inositol oxygenase) gene family in its interaction with beet cyst nematode Heterodera schachtii. In 2006, I attended my first ESN meeting in Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria, and since then, I have contributed to presenting and chairing sessions at ESN meetings. I also helped organize an ESN meeting in Vienna (2010) and the German Nematology meeting in Bonn (2018).

 I began working as a lecturer at the University of Bonn’s newly established Department of Molecular Phytomedicine in 2010. I played a key role in organizing its labs and streamlining its protocols while also establishing nematode cultures and training technical staff members and PhD students. During the three years the department spent preparing to begin producing publication-quality data, these activities helped me acquire the skills necessary for managing a nematology lab. Then, in 2015, I was invited to establish my own junior research group and to write grant proposals as a principal investigator.

My research group consists of 10 members (2 postdocs, 4 PhDs, and 4 master’s) and my research aims to enhance the basic understanding of plant-nematode interaction and translate the resultant knowledge into the development of tools/resources for the better management of plant-parasitic nematodes. The impact of my research includes over million USD in research funding, around two dozen publications, and two book chapters. I have supervised four bachelor’s students and 12 master’s students and co-supervised five PhD students. I also currently supervise five PhD students. I have served as a reviewer for  over 15 international journals (e.g., PLOS Pathogens, New Phytologist, Nematology, The Plant Journal) and PhD theses from various Pakistani Universities.

 Since 2010, I have regularly taught courses at the University of Bonn, Germany. Most of my teaching involves instructing students on the parasitic strategies of phytopathogens, particularly nematodes, which has allowed me to extend my research directly into the classroom. My objective as a teacher has been to train students to understand the basic aspects of plant nematology and to motivate them to further their learning in advanced nematology.