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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Taxa-area Relationship (TAR) of Microbial Functional Genes with Long-TGerm Fertilization

  • Author(s): Liang, Yuting
  • et al.

Diversity and spatial patterns in plant and animal communities are well documented as a positive-power law of a taxa-area relationship (TAR). At present little is known whether this also applies to soil microbial communities and whether long-term fertilization has an influence on the underlying microbial diversity. To test the effects of long-term fertilization on above-ground botanical diversity and below-ground microbial diversity, a nested sampling approach on Park Grass plots (12d & 11/2c) of Rothamsted Reseach in United Kingdom, both at ~;; pH 5 but with plant diversities of between 42 and 13 respectively were used. GeoChip 3.0, covering approximately 57, 000 gene sequences of 292 gene families involved in nitrogen, carbon, sulfur and phosphorus cycling, metal reduction and resistance, and organic contaminant degradation, was used to determine the gene area relationships for both functional and phylogenetic groups and the relationship to plant diversity. Our analysis indicated that the microbial communities were separated by different plant diversity based on DCA. The soil microbial diversity was in accord with plant diversity. Soil microbial community exhibited different z value with different plant diversity, z = 0.0449 with higher plant diversity and z = 0.0583 with lower plant diversity (P < 0.0001). These results suggest that the turnover in space of microorganisms may be higher with long-term fertilization.

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