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Prof Dr. Marcelo Betancur, Soil Microbiology, Most Reader’s Article Award

Professor at University of Caldas, Colombia


Dr. Marcelo Betancur is an esteemed Agricultural Engineer and Soil Scientist renowned for his expertise in mycorrhizal ecology, agroecosystem dynamics, and soil bioremediation. He holds a Master’s and Doctorate degree in Plant Genetic Resources, with a specialization in plant-soil relationships, from the Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil. Dr. Betancur’s research focuses on understanding the interactions between crops and mycorrhizal fungi, their effects on soil health, and their implications for sustainable agriculture. He has made significant contributions to the field through his work on soil biogeochemistry, crop-mycorrhizae interactions, and soil remediation techniques. With over a decade of experience in teaching and research, Dr. Betancur is committed to advancing knowledge in Soil Science and promoting environmentally sound agricultural practices.

Professional Profile:


Undergraduate Degree in Agricultural Engineering:

  • Institution: University of Caldas, Colombia

Master’s Degree in Plant Genetic Resources with Emphasis on Plant-Soil Relationships (Mycorrhizae and Soil Ecology):

  • Institution: Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil

Doctorate Degree in Plant Genetic Resources with Emphasis on Plant-Soil Relationships (Mycorrhizae and Soil Ecology):

  • Institution: Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil

Professional Experience:

Dr. Marcelo Betancur has amassed a wealth of professional experience, spanning over a decade, during which he has distinguished himself as a leading authority in Soil Science and related fields. His expertise encompasses teaching, research, and practical applications, with a particular focus on agroecosystems, mycorrhizae, and sustainable rural development.

Throughout his career, Dr. Betancur has held various roles that have allowed him to integrate his academic knowledge with real-world challenges and opportunities. He has served as a researcher, conducting groundbreaking studies into soil microbiology, mycology, and the biogeography of mycorrhizal fungi, contributing valuable insights to the scientific community. His research has extended to examining the relationships between crops such as corn and grapevines with mycorrhizal fungi, elucidating their influence on soil chemistry and ecosystem dynamics.

Dr. Betancur’s professional journey also includes significant contributions to the field of bioremediation, particularly focusing on the use of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi to mitigate soil contamination from fungicides. His innovative approaches have not only expanded our understanding of soil remediation techniques but also hold promise for addressing environmental challenges in agricultural settings.

In addition to his research endeavors, Dr. Betancur has dedicated himself to teaching and mentoring, sharing his expertise with the next generation of scientists and agricultural professionals. His commitment to education has fostered a culture of innovation and sustainability, empowering others to contribute meaningfully to the field of Soil Science.

Overall, Dr. Marcelo Betancur’s professional experience reflects his multifaceted contributions to advancing knowledge, promoting sustainable practices, and addressing critical environmental issues within agricultural systems. His work stands as a testament to his passion for improving soil health and fostering resilient rural communities.

Research Interest:

Mycorrhizal Ecology: Dr. Betancur is deeply interested in the ecology of mycorrhizal fungi and their interactions with plants and soil. He investigates the distribution, diversity, and functional roles of mycorrhizae in different ecosystems, with a particular emphasis on their influence on plant health, nutrient uptake, and soil structure.

Agroecosystem Dynamics: Understanding the complex relationships within agroecosystems is central to Dr. Betancur’s research agenda. He explores the interactions between crops, soil microorganisms, and environmental factors, aiming to optimize agricultural practices for sustainability and productivity.

Soil Remediation: Dr. Betancur is actively involved in research on soil bioremediation techniques, particularly focusing on the use of mycorrhizal fungi to mitigate soil contamination. His work aims to develop effective strategies for restoring soil health and ecosystem function in areas affected by pollutants, including fungicides.

Crop-Mycorrhizae Interactions: Investigating the symbiotic relationships between crops and mycorrhizal fungi is a key aspect of Dr. Betancur’s research. He examines how different crop species interact with mycorrhizae, their effects on plant growth and yield, and their implications for sustainable agricultural practices.

Soil Biogeochemistry: Dr. Betancur explores the chemical processes occurring within soils, with a focus on understanding how mycorrhizal fungi influence soil nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, and overall soil fertility. His research contributes to a deeper understanding of soil biogeochemical dynamics and their implications for ecosystem health.

Publications Top Noted: 

Title: Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus richness in the soil and root colonization in vineyards of different ages

  • Authors: M Betancur-Agudelo, E Meyer, PE Lovato
  • Published in: Rhizosphere
  • Volume: 17
  • Year: 2021
  • Pages: 100307
  • Citations: 14

Title: Growth, heavy metal uptake, and photosynthesis in ‘Paulsen 1103’ (Vitis berlandieri x rupestris) grapevine rootstocks inoculated with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi from vineyard

  • Authors: M Betancur-Agudelo, E Meyer, PE Lovato
  • Published in: Vitis Journal Grapevine Research
  • Volume: 59
  • Issue: 5
  • Year: 2020
  • Pages: 169-180
  • Citations: 12

Title: Dung beetles and the conservation of diversity in an agricultural landscape with maize fields and Atlantic Forest remnants

  • Authors: VM Alves, ELH Giehl, PE Lovato, FZ Vaz-de-Mello, M Betancur-Agudelo, et al.
  • Published in: Acta Oecologica
  • Volume: 107
  • Year: 2020
  • Pages: 103598
  • Citations: 9

Title: Occurrence and richness of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in vineyards with grapevine decline and dieback symptoms

  • Authors: AS Bezerra, M Betancur-Agudelo, E Meyer, K Kemmelmeier, SL Stürmer, et al.
  • Published in: Ciência Rural
  • Volume: 52
  • Year: 2021
  • Pages: e20210011
  • Citations: 5

Title: Mycorrhizal root colonization in maize fields is more affected by soil management and climate conditions than by plant genotype

  • Authors: E Meyer, M Betancur-Agudelo, BS Ventura, KG Dos Anjos, et al.
  • Published in: Archives of Microbiology
  • Volume: 203
  • Issue: 7
  • Year: 2021
  • Pages: 4609-4618
  • Citations: 5
Marcelo Betancur | Soil Microbiology | Most Reader’s Article Award

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