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Carles Castaño Soler

Carles Castaño Soler
My research interest is to study how microbial communities respond to disturbances (e.g. tree harvesting, pests, climate change, land use changes), with special focus on fungal communities inhabiting soils. I am especially interested in upscaling fungal responses to disturbances at ecosystem level, with the main goal to understand how ecosystem processes such as nutrient cycle, carbon storage or plant colonization are determined by fungi.


With forestry as an academic background, my first contact with fungi started on 2007, when I worked 4 years as a forest pathologist technician at the Forest Science Center of Catalonia (CTFC). My interest in science became aparent when I started an internship (Erasmus workplacement) at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, where I learnt several molecular methods while preparing spore trap samples for high-throughput DNA sequencing. On 2015 I started an industrial phD at the University of Lleida about forest management and how abiotic parameters affect soil fungal communities. On November 2018 I came back to the Department with Karina Clemmensen and Sara Hallin to work with the Project “Mycorrhizal fungi and vegetation regime shifts”, in which I try to understand how microbes may determine important ecosystem processes such as nitrogen and carbon cycle and vegetation dynamics by using molecular and biochemical methods.


My main interest is to understand the ecology of fungi in forest ecosystems, but I am currently expanding my knowledge on bacterial communities, and studying other systems such as grasslands in subarctic ecosystems.


I am involved in other studies where we study how fungal communities change across fertility or vegetation gradients or how fungal communities are affected by disturbances in forests, grasslands or peatlands from Sweden, Japan, Ethiopia, Spain, Mongolia and UK. A particular specific field of interest is also the ecology of black truffle (Tuber melanosporum) in planted and natural orchards.

Selected publications

Parladé, J. Queralt, M, Pera, J. Bonet, JA, Castaño, C. Martínez-Peña, F, Piñol, J, Senar, MA, De Miguel AM. 2019. Temporal dynamics of soil fungal communities after partial and total clear-cutting in a managed Pinus sylvestris stand. Forest Ecology and Management, 449, 117456.


Castaño C, Dejene T, Mediavilla O, Geml J, Oria-de-Rueda JA, Martin-Pinto P.  2019. Changes in fungal diversity and composition along a chronosequence of Eucalyptus grandis plantations in Ethiopia. Fungal Ecology 39, 328-335


Castaño C, Bonet JA, Oliva J, Farré G, Martínez de Aragón J, Parladé J, Pera J, Alday JG. 2019. Rainfall homogenizes while fruiting increases diversity of spore deposition in Mediterranean conditions. Fungal Ecology. 41, 279-288.


Brodde L, Adamson K, Camarero J.J., Castaño C., Drenkhan, R., Lehtijarvi, A., Luchi, N.,  Migliorini, D., Sánchez-Miranda, A., Stenlid, J., Özdağ, Ş., Oliva, J. 2019. Diplodia tip blight on its way to the north: drivers of disease emergence in Northern Europe. Frontiers in Plant Sciences. 9, 1818. 


Castaño C, Alday JG, Lindahl BD, Martínez de Aragón J, de-Miguel S, Colinas C, Parladé J, Pera J, Bonet JA. 2018. Lack of thinning effects over inter-annual changes in soil fungal community and diversity in a Mediterranean pine forest. Forest Ecology and Management. 424, 420-427.


Castaño C, Lindahl BD, Alday JG, Hagenbo A, Martínez de Aragón J, Parladé J, Pera J, Bonet JA. 2018. Temporal and spatial changes in soil fungal communities across moisture and temperature gradients in a Mediterranean pine forest. New Phytologist. 220, 1211-1221. doi: 10.1111/nph.15205.


Castaño C, Oliva J, Martínez de Aragón JM, Alday JG, Parladé J, Pera J, Bonet JA. 2017. Mushroom emergence detected by combining spore trapping with molecular techniques. Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 83, 1-14. doi:10.1128/AEM.00600-17.


Castaño C, Alday JG, Parladé J, Pera J, Martínez de Aragón J, Bonet JA. 2017. Seasonal dynamics of the ectomycorrhizal fungus Lactarius vinosus are altered by changes in soil moisture and temperature. Soil Biology and Biochemistry. 115, 253-260. doi:10.1016/j.soilbio.2017.08.021.


Yurkewich JI, Castaño C, Colinas C. 2017. Chestnut Red Stain: Identification of the fungi associated with the costly discolouration of Castanea sativa. Forest Pathology. 47, e12335. doi:10.1111/efp.12335. 


Oliva J, Castaño C, Baulenas E, Domínguez G, González-Olabarría JR, Oliach D. 2016. The impact of the socioeconomic environment on the implementation of control measures against an invasive forest pathogen. Forest Ecology and Management. 380, 118-127.


Castaño C, Parladé J, Pera J, Martínez de Aragón J, Alday JG, Bonet JA. 2016. Soil drying procedure affects the DNA quantification of Lactarius vinosus but does not change the fungal community composition. Mycorrhiza. 26, 799-808. doi:10.1007/s00572-016-0714-3.


Castaño C, Bassie L, Oliach D, Gómez M, Medina V, Liu B, Colinas C. 2015. Cryphonectria hypovirus 1 (CHV-1) survey reveals low occurence and diversity of subtypes in NE Spain. Forest Pathology. 15, 51-59. doi: 10.1111/efp.12131. 


Methods papers

Castaño, C., Berlin, A., Durling, M.B., Ihrmark, K., Lindahl, B.D., Stenlid, J., Clemmensen, K.E., Olson, Å., 2020. Optimized metabarcoding with Pacific Biosciences enables semi‐quantitative analysis of fungal communities. New Phytologist, In press.


Researcher at the Department of Forest Mycology and Plant Pathology; Markmikrobiologi
Postal address:
Skoglig mykologi och växtpatologi
Box 7026
750 07 Uppsala
Visiting address: Almas Allé 5, Uppsala