A - Papers appearing in refereed journals
Huang, R., McGrath, S. P., Hirsch, P. R., Clark, I. M., Storkey, J., Wu, L., Zhou, J. and Liang, Y. 2019. Plant–microbe networks in soil are weakened by century‐long use of inorganic fertilizers. Microbial Biotechnology. 12 (6), pp. 1464-1475.
|Authors||Huang, R., McGrath, S. P., Hirsch, P. R., Clark, I. M., Storkey, J., Wu, L., Zhou, J. and Liang, Y.|
Understanding the changes in plant–microbe interactions is critically important for predicting ecosystem functioning in response to human‐induced environmental changes such as nitrogen (N) addition. In this study, the effects of a century‐long fertilization treatment (> 150 years) on the networks between plants and soil microbial functional communities, detected by GeoChip, in grassland were determined in the Park Grass Experiment at Rothamsted Research, UK. Our results showed that plants and soil microbes have a consistent response to long‐term fertilization—both richness and diversity of plants and soil microbes are significantly decreased, as well as microbial functional genes involved in soil carbon (C), nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) cycling. The network‐based analyses showed that long‐term fertilization decreased the complexity of networks between plant and microbial functional communities in terms of node numbers, connectivity, network density and the clustering coefficient. Similarly, within the soil microbial community, the strength of microbial associations was also weakened in response to long‐term fertilization. Mantel path analysis showed that soil C and N contents were the main factors affecting the network between plants and microbes. Our results indicate that century‐long fertilization weakens the plant–microbe networks, which is important in improving our understanding of grassland ecosystem functions and stability under long‐term agriculture management.
|Year of Publication||2019|
|Journal citation||12 (6), pp. 1464-1475|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||doi:10.1111/1751-7915.13487|
|Open access||Published as ‘gold’ (paid) open access|
|Funder||Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council|
|Funder project or code||S2N - Soil to Nutrition - Work package 1 (WP1) - Optimising nutrient flows and pools in the soil-plant-biota system|
|The Rothamsted Long Term Experiments [2017-2022]|
|Online||19 Sep 2019|
|Publication process dates|
|Accepted||26 Aug 2019|
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