I am a Research Leader in Conservation genetics. My research focuses on understanding the evolutionary relationships among a wide variety of plant groups, using population-level genetic data of threatened species to inform conservation plans, and to delimit taxa boundaries based on morphological and molecular data. My research interests also deal with providing food security based on the identification of Crop Wild Relatives (e.g. yams), by characterizing genomic tools to improve crop varieties (e.g. rice), or by deciphering the phylogeography and domestication history of widely distributed crops (e.g. carob tree).
- BSc. Biology, University of Sevilla, 2006
- Diploma of Advanced Studies. Advances in Agricultural Sciences and Natural Habitats, Univ. Zaragoza, 2008
- European Master's Degree in Secondary Education Teaching, specialty Biology and Geology, Univ. Zaragoza, 2011
- European PhD. Evolutionary biology and conservation genetics of the Chilean endemic group Epipetrum (Dioscoreaceae). Univ. Zaragoza, 2014
- Bioinformatics analysis, Specialization Diploma. Univ. Pablo de Olavide, 2016
- Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship at RBGK. Project: YAMNOMICS: Phylogenomics, evolution, biogeography and key traits for breeders in yams (Dioscorea, Dioscoreaceae), 2017-2018.
- Postdoctoral researcher at Aix-Marseille Université, France. Project: DYNAMIC: Deciphering symbiotic networks in carob-based Mediterranean agro-ecosystems, 2016
- Postdoctoral researcher at University of Sevilla, Spain. Project: The hypothesis of reproductive assurance and its importance in the maintenance of mixed reproductive systems, 2015
- Postdoctoral researcher at Escuela Politécnica Superior de Huesca, Univ. of Zaragoza, Spain. Project: Development of genomic tools to improve European japonica rice varieties through analysis of genetic diversity associated with agronomic traits, 2014
Viruel, J., Le Galliot, N., Pironon, S., et al. (2019).
A strong east–west Mediterranean divergence supports a new phylogeographic history of the carob tree (Ceratonia siliqua, Leguminosae) and multiple domestications from native populations.
Journal of Biogeography
Viruel, J., Conejero, M., Hidalgo, O., et al. (2019).
Frontiers in Plant Science 10:937.
Soto Gomez, M., Pokorny, L., Kantar, M.B., et al. (2019).
A customized nuclear target enrichment approach for developing a phylogenomic baseline for Dioscorea yams (Dioscoreaceae).
Applications in Plant Sciences 7: e11254.
Christenhusz, M.J.M., Bangiolo, L., Chase, M.W., et al. (2019).
Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 189: 311-352.
Viruel, J., Haguenauer, A., Juin, M., et al. (2018).
Advances in genotyping microsatellite markers through sequencing and consequences of scoring methods for Ceratonia siliqua (Leguminosae).
Appl Plant Sci. 6:e01201.
Identifying and conserving resilient habitats in the British Virgin Islands
Informing conservation of globally threatened biodiversity by identifying forest habitats resilient to natural disasters in the British Virgin Islands.
BaoBat: Multidisciplinary conservation of the baobab Adansonia suarezensis
We will study different stages of the life cycle and conduct conservation action to protect Adansonia suarezensis, one of the six endemic Malagasy baobabs.
Biodiversity metrics for conservation management in the British Virgin Islands
Generating three biodiversity metrics (phylogenetic diversity, species richness and species threat assessments) for flowering plants of the British Virgin Islands to help direct conservation action and management.
- BaoBat – Conservation genetics of two mutualistic species in Madagascar: the iconic baobab Adansonia suazerensis and its bat pollinator Eidolon dupreanum.
- YAMNOMICS: Phylogenomics, evolution, biogeography and key traits for breeders in yams (Dioscorea, Dioscoreaceae).
- DYNAMIC: Deciphering symbiotic networks in carob-based Mediterranean agro-ecosystems.