Research Interest 

As an agroecologist, my specific interest includes optimizing crop production system in tropics, such as millet-legume inter-cropping system, through holistic research methods consisting of plant, water and nutrient uptake via the beneficial soil microbes, such as mycorrhiza and plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria, drought mitigation and soil fertility restoration through optimizing below-and-above-ground biotic and abiotic interactions. I am interested in greater understanding of carbon, water and nutrient cycles at the molecular, cellular, ecosystem and trophic levels, using cutting-edge next-generation tools such as plant & soil microbiome analysis, stable isotope, plant and soil microbiome analysis.

Education and Professional Experience

2005 - ongoing Senior Scientist (Physiological Plant Ecology group) at the University of Basel, Switzerland
2005 - 2014 Postdoc (Plant Physiology group) at the University of Basel, Switzerland
2002-2005 PhD (Natural Sciences) at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH), Zurich, Switzerland
1999-2001 MSc (Agricultural Microbiology) at the University of Agricultural Sciences, GKVK, Bangalore, India
1994-1998 BSc (Agriculture) at the Agricultural College & Research Institute, Tiruchirappalli, India


Tracing an inoculated arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus, Funneliformis mosseae, in a field experiment using molecular tools. Thilagar G, Anshu BR, Bagyaraj DJ, Mathimaran N and Jawali N. Current Research in Environmental & Applied Mycology. 2018. 8(2). 183-193.

Improving Crop Yield and Nutrient Use Efficiency via Biofertilization—A Global Meta-analysis. Schütz L, Gattinger A, Meier M, Müller A, Boller T, Mäder P and Mathimaran N. Frontiers in Plant Sciences. 2018. 8. Article 2204.

Arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis and drought tolerance in crop plants. Mathimaran N, Sharma MP, Raju M and Bagyaraj DJ. Mycosphere. 2017. 8(3). 361-376.

Non-target effects of bioinoculants on rhizospheric microbial communities of Cajanus cajan. Gupta R, Mathimaran N, Wiemken A, Boller T, Bisaria VS and Sharma S. Applied Soil Ecology. 2014. 76. 26-33.

Mycorrhizal networks: Common goods of plants shared under unequal terms of trade. Walder F, Niemann H, Mathimaran N, Lehmann MF, Boller T and Wiemken A. Plant Physiology. 2012. 159. 789-797.

Genome sequences of two plant growth promoting fluorescent pseudomonas strains R62 and R81. Mathimaran N, Srivastava, Wiemken A, Sharma A K and Boller T. Journal of Bacteriology. 2012. 194. 3272-3273.

Unexpected vagaries of microsatellite loci in Glomus intraradices: Length polymorphisms are rarely caused by variation in repeat number only. Mathimaran N, Falquet L, Ineichen K, Picard C, Redecker D, Wiemken A and Boller T. New Phytologist. 2008. 180. 568-570.

Genetic diversity and host plant preferences revealed by simple sequence repeat and mitochondrial markers in a population of the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus Glomus intraradices. Croll D, Wille L, Gamper HA, Mathimaran N, Lammers PJ, Corradi N and Sanders IR. New Phytologist. 2008. 178. 672-687.

Microsatellites for disentangling underground networks: Strain-specific identification of Glomus intraradices, an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus. Mathimaran N, Falquet L, Ineichen K, Picard C, Redecker D, Wiemken A and Boller T. Fungal Genetics and Biology. 2008. 45. 812- 817.

Impact of agricultural management on arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal communities in Kenyan ferralsol. Mathimaran N, Ruh R, Jama B, Verchot L, Frossard E and Jansa J. Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment. 2007. 119. 22-32.

Glomus intraradices dominates arbuscular mycorrhizal communities in a heavy textured agricultural soil. Mathimaran N, Ruh R, Vullioud P, Frossard E and Jansa J. Mycorrhiza. 2005. 16. 61-66.

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Dr. Mathimaran Natarajan

University of Basel
Schönbeinstrasse 6
4056 Basel

Office no.: 01.001
Phone: +41 (0)61 207 23 37