Crop productivity and efficiency
We study the efficiency of crops in the use of water and nutrients, as well as the physiological characteristics of the responses to abiotic stresses in crops, genotypes and wild species.
Control of greenhouse gas emissions
We evaluate the impact of management practices on emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrous oxide (N2O) from the soil to the atmosphere. We try to discern which abiotic and biotic soil factors are the main determinants of the magnitude of greenhouse gas emissions.
Organic waste management
We carry out agronomic, analytical and economic feasibility evaluations of organic by-products and sewage sludge for application and use in agriculture and for the recovery of contaminated and eroded soils.
Management of weed vegetation
We investigate the population dynamics of the weed flora and its seed banks in crops in a changing climate, optimizing the integrated control strategies of weed species in agricultural systems. We study the functional traits of weed species that relate agricultural biodiversity to climate.
We study the diversity of microfauna and analyze the structure and functionality of edaphic food webs. We use soil diversity as an indicator of agricultural sustainability and study its relationship with agroecosystem processes and services, including maintenance of soil fertility and nutrient cycles, control of diseases and pests, and crop yield. We study the response of biodiversity to agents of environmental change and look for forms of agricultural management that maximize the resilience of food webs and their functions in the soil.
We investigate the diversity of the soil microbiome (bacteria, archaea and fungi) using omic, phylogenetic and functional approaches. We try to understand the relationship between the diversity of the microbiome and the essential functions that soil performs in ecosystems, such as the decomposition of organic matter and the cycling of nutrients. We also investigate the influence of the microbiome on the resilience and restoration capacity of plant communities against agents of environmental change.
Development and application of analytical methodology
We develop analytical methods for the determination of organic pollutants in environmental and food samples.
Application of nanoparticles and molecularly imprinted polymers for the determination of organic pollutants.
We prepare different materials that offer an improvement to the sample preparation stage for the analysis of contaminants in different matrices.
Distribution, persistence, absorption and degradation kinetics of organic pollutants
We carry out degradation, resistance, absorption and degradation kinetics studies of organic pollutants in different matrices and environmental conditions.
Study of the improvement of beekeeping production conditions.
In response to the risk situations created by the residues of veterinary treatments used for the control of Varroa in the beekeeping sector.
Development of methodologies for the monitoring of biophysical and biochemical traits in green roofs.
Use of optical sensors to monitor and predict the functioning of agroforestry ecosystems in semi-arid environments.
Study of the mechanisms underlying toxicity and bioaccumulation
We study the mechanisms underlying the toxicity and bioaccumulation of pollutants (nanomaterials, agri-food waste, mycotoxins, biocides) in aquatic organisms.
Assessment of the hazards of pollutants to the environment
We develop tools to assess the dangers of pollutants (nanomaterials, agri-food waste, mycotoxins, biocides) for the environment
Ecotoxicological characterization of pollutants
We apply and develop bioassays for assessing pollutant sublethal effects on soil invertebrates and plans, as well as on freshwater algae, invertebrates and vertebrates. Bioassays are performed following standardized protocols and implementing new research outcomes such as biomarkers,
in vitro methods and multi-species and microcosms tests.
Effect-based methods and chemical analysis for environmental assessment of emerging pollutants and their joint effects
We research on how emerging pollutants (personal care products, pharmaceuticals, nanoparticles and micro/nanoplastics) and their complex mixtures in the environment or in reused waste (manure/ reclaimed water) can be transferred (soil-water-living organisms) and can impact ecosystems.