Francisco Fuentes, Ph.D
Researcher in the field of plant breeding, genetics and crop production, whose activities have been focused on development of a quinoa breeding program under the extreme conditions of the Atacama desert, rainfed and cold-temperate areas of central-southern Chile
The main objective of this breeding program has been to develop improved lines of quinoa for high yields, nutritional value and environment adaptation through selection and evaluation of native germplasm using conventional tools and DNA markers.
He is currently working as Professor and Researcher at Faculty of Agronomy and Forestry, Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. His prior working experience includes Researcher at Department of Pharmaceutics, Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy, Rutgers University, USA; International Quinoa Expert, Administration of Foreign Expert of Jilin Province, P. R. China; and FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) consultant in Chile.
He obtained his PhD in Agroforestry and Veterinary Sciences, Molecular Genetics at University of Chile in 2007 and B.S. in Agronomy and Crop Science at Concepcion University, Chile in 2001. He received awards including Postdoctoral Fellowship funded by the National Commission for Science and Technology (CONICYT), Chile (2012-2014) and Doctoral Fellowship funded by the National Commission for Science and Technology (CONICYT), Chile (2004-2007).
He is a founder member of QuinoaLab UC research group, created in Santiago – Chile in 2015. This interdisciplinary group have developed a high impact research model for small landholders’ development in Chile. He has also received number of research grants as Principal Investigator, Associate Investigator and International Research Collaborator, publishing +50 research articles in refereed journals. He serves as representative of European Biotechnology Thematic Network Association (EBTNA) in Chile, Editor-in-chief of Journal Ciencia e Investigación Agraria and Journal of Agronomy, as well as editorial board member in different international journals.