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Julia Kyaschenko

I am an established biologist with a background in microbial ecology, conservation biology and forest ecosystem ecology. I am particularly interested in studying the effects of forest management practices and policies on forest ecosystem functioning and biodiversity.


Currently I am working as a researcher at Conservation Biology Unit (led by Thomas Ranius). I am involved in the project, were we investigate the linkages between forest conservation values, belowground fungal community and soil carbon storage in boreal forests. This collaboarative project is led by Joachim Strengbom and is aimed to study links between the assesed conservation value of the forests (based on aboveground structers) and the diversity and community compoistion of belowground soil organisms, such as fungi. Further, we aim to link the abundance of major fungal guilds to carbon stocks in those forests. For that, we use metagenomics, comparative genomics, phylogenetic analysis, and characterization of boreal fungal communities based on meta-barcoding data. 

During my postdoctoral position, we took an advantage of long-term Swedish national forest inventory data and examines changes in structures important for biodiversity over the past three decades in four forest types with descending tiers of biodiversity protection: protected areas, woodland key habitats, low-productivity forests and production forests. Another part of my postdoctoral position was focused on summarizing the knowledge about how conservation efficiency relates to the size of preserved forests and clustering within the landscape. For this, we used a systematic approach to search for landscape-level evaluations of the effect of patch size and spatial allocation of conservation areas on biodiversity. Specifically, we scanned for studies comparing biodiversity across several small vs. few large and dispersed vs. aggregated conservation areas, of the same total area.


2018 Ph.D. in Biology, Department of Soil and Environment, SLU

During my Ph.D. studies I was using a combination of molecular tools, stable isotopes measurements and enzyme assays to detect the ecological relationship between fungal community composition and soil organic matter dynamics in boreal forest soils.

2011 Master Degree in Ecology, Department of Forest Mycology and Plant Pathology, SLU

Selected publications

Kyaschenko J, Strengbom J, Felton A, Aakala T, Staland H, Ranius T (2022) Increase in dead wood, large living trees and tree diversity, yet decrease in understory vegetation cover: The effect of three decades of biodiversity-oriented forest policy in Swedish forests. Journal of Environmental Management 313: 114993.

Kyaschenko J, Ovaskainen O, Ekblad A, Hagenbo A, Karltun E, Clemmensen KE, Lindahl BD (2018) Soil fertility in boreal forest relates to root-driven nitrogen retention and carbon sequestration in the mor layer. New Phytologist 221: 1492-1502

Kyaschenko J, Clemmensen KE, Karltun E, Lindahl BD (2017). Below-ground organic matter accumulation along a boreal forest fertility gradient relates to guild interaction within fungal communities. Ecology letters 20: 1546-1555

Kyaschenko J, Clemmensen KE, Hagenbo A, Karltun E, Lindahl BD (2017). Shift in fungal communities and associated enzyme activities along an age gradient of managed Pinus sylvestris stands. ISME Journal 11: 863-874