2 research outputs found

    Drivers of archaeal ammonia-oxidizing communities in soil

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    Soil ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) are highly abundant and play an important role in the nitrogen cycle. In addition, AOA have a significant impact on soil quality. Nitrite produced by AOA and further oxidized to nitrate can cause nitrogen loss from soils, surface and groundwater contamination, and water eutrophication. The AOA discovered to date are classified in the phylum Thaumarchaeota. Only a few archaeal genomes are available in databases. As a result, AOA genes are not well annotated, and it is difficult to mine and identify archaeal genes within metagenomic libraries. Nevertheless, 16S rRNA and comparative analysis of ammonia monooxygenase sequences show that soils can vary greatly in the relative abundance of AOA. In some soils, AOA can comprise more than 10% of the total prokaryotic community. In other soils, AOA comprise less than 0.5% of the community. Many approaches have been used to measure the abundance and diversity of this group including DGGE, T-RFLP, q-PCR, and DNA sequencing. AOA have been studied across different soil types and various ecosystems from the Antarctic dry valleys to the tropical forests of South America to the soils near Mount Everest. Different studies have identified multiple soil factors that trigger the abundance of AOA. These factors include pH, concentration of available ammonia, organic matter content, moisture content, nitrogen content, clay content, as well as other triggers. Land use management appears to have a major effect on the abundance of AOA in soil, which may be the result of nitrogen fertilizer used in agricultural soils. This review summarizes the published results on this topic and suggests future work that will increase our understanding of how soil management and edaphoclimatic factors influence AOA

    Ca. Nitrososphaera and Bradyrhizobium are inversely correlated and related to agricultural practices in long-term field experiments

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    Agricultural land management, such as fertilization, liming, and tillage affects soil properties, including pH, organic matter content, nitrification rates, and the microbial community. Three different study sites were used to identify microorganisms that correlate with agricultural land use and to determine which factors regulate the relative abundance of the microbial signatures of the agricultural land-use. The three sites included in this study are the Broadbalk Experiment at Rothamsted Research, UK, the Everglades Agricultural Area, Florida, USA, and the Kellogg Biological Station, Michigan, USA. The effects of agricultural management on the abundance and diversity of bacteria and archaea were determined using high throughput, barcoded 16S rRNA sequencing. In addition, the relative abundance of these organisms was correlated with soil features. Two groups of microorganisms involved in nitrogen cycle were highly correlated with land use at all three sites. The ammonia oxidizing-archaea, dominated by Ca. Nitrososphaera, were positively correlated with agriculture while a ubiquitous group of soil bacteria closely related to the diazotrophic symbiont, Bradyrhizobium, was negatively correlated with agricultural management. Analysis of successional plots showed that the abundance of ammonia oxidizing-archaea declined and the abundance of bradyrhizobia increased with time away from agriculture. This observation suggests that the effect of agriculture on the relative abundance of these genera is reversible. Soil pH and NH(3) concentrations were positively correlated with archaeal abundance but negatively correlated with the abundance of Bradyrhizobium. The high correlations of Ca. Nitrososphaera and Bradyrhizobium abundances with agricultural management at three long-term experiments with different edaphoclimatic conditions allowed us to suggest these two genera as signature microorganisms for agricultural land use