Publication

Seasonal variations in the diversity and abundance of diazotrophic communities across soils

Pereira e Silva, M. C., Semenov, A. V., van Elsas, J. D. & Salles, J. F., Jul-2011, In : FEMS Microbial Ecology. 77, 1, p. 57-68 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

The nitrogen (N)-fixing community is a key functional community in soil, as it replenishes the pool of biologically available N that is lost to the atmosphere via anaerobic ammonium oxidation and denitrification. We characterized the structure and dynamic changes in diazotrophic communities, based on the nifH gene, across eight different representative Dutch soils during one complete growing season, to evaluate the amplitude of the natural variation in abundance and diversity, and identify possible relationships with abiotic factors. Overall, our results indicate that soil type is the main factor influencing the N-fixing communities, which were more abundant and diverse in the clay soils (n=4) than in the sandy soils (n=4). On average, the amplitude of variation in community size as well as the range-weighted richness were also found to be higher in the clay soils. These results indicate that N-fixing communities associated with sandy and clay soil show a distinct amplitude of variation under field conditions, and suggest that the diazotrophic communities associated with clay soil might be more sensitive to fluctuations associated with the season and agricultural practices. Moreover, soil characteristics such as ammonium content, pH and texture most strongly correlated with the variations observed in the diversity, size and structure of N-fixing communities, whose relative importance was determined across a temporal and spatial scale.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-68
Number of pages12
JournalFEMS Microbial Ecology
Volume77
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul-2011

    Keywords

  • nifH, soil, diversity, abundance, baseline, soil type, GRADIENT GEL-ELECTROPHORESIS, POLYMERASE-CHAIN-REACTION, NITROGEN-FIXING BACTERIA, NIFH GENE POOLS, MANAGEMENT REGIME, MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES, GRASSLAND SOILS, PLANTS, IMPACT, FLUCTUATIONS

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