Arable soil nitrogen dynamics reflect organic inputs via the extended composite phenotype

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Neal, A. L., Barrat, H., Bacq-Lebreuil, A., Qin, Y., Zhang, X., Takahashi, T., Rubio, V., Hughes, D. J., Clark, I. M., Cardenas, L. M., Gardiner, L., Krishna, R., Glendining, M. J., Ritz, K., Mooney, S. and Crawford, J. W. 2023. Arable soil nitrogen dynamics reflect organic inputs via the extended composite phenotype. Nature Food. https://doi.org/10.1038/s43016-022-00671-z

AuthorsNeal, A. L., Barrat, H., Bacq-Lebreuil, A., Qin, Y., Zhang, X., Takahashi, T., Rubio, V., Hughes, D. J., Clark, I. M., Cardenas, L. M., Gardiner, L., Krishna, R., Glendining, M. J., Ritz, K., Mooney, S. and Crawford, J. W.
Abstract

Achieving food security requires resilient agricultural systems with improved nutrient-use efficiency, optimized water and nutrient storage in soils, and reduced gaseous emissions. Success relies on understanding coupled nitrogen and carbon metabolism in soils, their associated influences on soil structure and the processes controlling nitrogen transformations at scales relevant to microbial activity. Here we show that the influence of organic matter on arable soil nitrogen transformations can be decoded by integrating metagenomic data with soil structural parameters. Our approach provides a mechanistic explanation of why organic matter is effective in reducing nitrous oxide losses while supporting system resilience. The relationship between organic carbon, soil-connected porosity and flow rates at scales relevant to microbes suggests that important increases in nutrient-use efficiency could be achieved at lower organic carbon stocks than currently envisaged.

KeywordsSoil; Composite phenotype; Nitrogen; Nitrous oxide; Wheat; Organic matter
Year of Publication2023
JournalNature Food
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1038/s43016-022-00671-z
Open accessPublished as green open access
FunderBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeS2N - Soil to Nutrition - Work package 1 (WP1) - Optimising nutrient flows and pools in the soil-plant-biota system
S2N - Soil to Nutrition - Work package 2 (WP2) - Adaptive management systems for improved efficiency and nutritional quality
The Rothamsted Long Term Experiments [2017-2022]
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online23 Dec 2022
Publication process dates
Accepted14 Nov 2022
PublisherSpringer Nature
Nature Publishing Group
ISSN2662-1355

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