Jesús Mercado-Blanco (https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1895-5895) is Research Scientist at the Estación Experimental del Zaidín (EEZ, Granada, Spain), belonging to the Agencia Estatal Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC). Previous research activities were conducted at Utrecht University (Utrecht, The Netherlands) and at Institute for Sustainable Agriculture (IAS-CSIC, Córdoba, Spain). Head of the Crop Protection Department of IAS-CSIC (2020-2022).
His research is mainly focused on microbiology, agro-biotechnology, plant-microorganism interactions, and the development of control tools within integrated management strategies of soil-borne diseases affecting crops relevant for the Mediterranean area, using Verticillium wilt of olive a study system. Fusarium wilt of banana is also an important target under investigation. The identification, characterization and use of biological control agents (BCA) constitute one of his my main research lines. Specific research topics are, among others:
- the elucidation of the molecular bases underlying interactions involving BCAs, soil-borne phytopathogens and host plants by molecular and ‘-omics’ approaches;
- the characterization and utilization of beneficial bacterial endophytes;
- the analysis of the genetic and molecular diversity of rhizosphere/soil microorganisms; and
- the qualitative and quantitative molecular detection of soil-borne fungal pathogens.
He is (co)author of over 100 research, informative, proceedings articles, and book chapters, and (co)inventor of 9 patents (https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Jesus_Mercado-Blanco).
He has participated in more than 20 research projects (10 as Principal Investigator).
Consulting Editor (from 2018 to date) for the journal Plant and Soil (previously serving as Section Editor from 2008 to 2018). Associate Editor for the journals BioControl (2010 to 2021) and Frontiers in Microbiology (2016 to 2019). He has also served as Guest Editor of three “Research Topics” published in the journals Frontiers in Microbiology (2) and Frontiers in Plant Science (1), and different Special Issues for the journals BioControl, Plant and Soil, Agronomy, Plants, Forests and Pathogens. Anonymous referee of scientific research proposals and of research personnel selection processes for several national and international agencies. Anonymous reviewer for more than 20 scientific journals related to the microbiology, biotechnology, plant sciences, soil sciences, etc. research areas.
Spanish representative in the Management Committee of the COST Action FP1305 “Linking belowground biodiversity and ecosystem function in European forests (BioLink)”.
He gave seminars, key-notes and invited conferences and webinars for different academic institutions as well as in diverse scientific and technical meetings (Austria, Costa Rica, France, Italy, Israel, Mexico, The Netherlands, The Philippines, PR China, Rumania, Spain, etc.).
He has participated in different IOBC-WPRS meetings, including four of the WG Integrated Protection of Olive Crops (Córdoba 2009, Jerusalem 2011, Kalamata 2015 and Lisbon 2021).