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Sample records for soil biological activity

  1. Cover crops to enhance soil biological activity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cover crops can be an important component of conservation agricultural systems in the eastern USA. This presentation summarizes some of the benefits derived from cover crops, how cover crops impact soil biological activity, and how soil biological activity can be used to assess the sustainability o...

  2. Soil degradation effect on biological activity in Mediterranean calcareous soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roca-Pérez, L.; Alcover-Sáez, S.; Mormeneo, S.; Boluda, R.

    2009-04-01

    Soil degradation processes include erosion, organic matter decline, compaction, salinization, landslides, contamination, sealing and biodiversity decline. In the Mediterranean region the climatological and lithological conditions, together with relief on the landscape and anthropological activity are responsible for increasing desertification process. It is therefore considered to be extreme importance to be able to measure soil degradation quantitatively. We studied soil characteristics, microbiological and biochemical parameters in different calcareous soil sequences from Valencia Community (Easter Spain), in an attempt to assess the suitability of the parameters measured to reflect the state of soil degradation and the possibility of using the parameters to assess microbiological decline and soil quality. For this purpose, forest, scrubland and agricultural soil in three soil sequences were sampled in different areas. Several sensors of the soil biochemistry and microbiology related with total organic carbon, microbial biomass carbon, soil respiration, microorganism number and enzyme activities were determined. The results show that, except microorganism number, these parameters are good indicators of a soil biological activity and soil quality. The best enzymatic activities to use like indicators were phosphatases, esterases, amino-peptidases. Thus, the enzymes test can be used as indicators of soil degradation when this degradation is related with organic matter losses. There was a statistically significant difference in cumulative O2 uptake and extracellular enzymes among the soils with different degree of degradation. We would like to thank Spanish government-MICINN for funding and support (MICINN, project CGL2006-09776).

  3. Soil biological activity at European scale - two calculation concepts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krger, Janine; Rhlmann, Jrg

    2014-05-01

    The CATCH-C project aims to identify and improve the farm-compatibility of Soil Management Practices including to promote productivity, climate change mitigation and soil quality. The focus of this work concentrates on turnover conditions for soil organic matter (SOM). SOM is fundamental for the maintenance of quality and functions of soils while SOM storage is attributed a great importance in terms of climate change mitigation. The turnover conditions depend on soil biological activity characterized by climate and soil properties. To assess the turnover conditions two model concepts are applied: (I) Biological active time (BAT) regression approach derived from CANDY model (Franko & Oelschlgel 1995) expresses the variation of air temperature, precipitation and soil texture as a timescale and an indicator of biological activity for soil organic matter (SOM) turnover. (II) Re_clim parameter within the Introductory Carbon Balance Model (Andrn & Ktterer 1997) states the soil temperature and soil water to estimate soil biological activity. The modelling includes two strategies to cover the European scale and conditions. BAT was calculated on a 20x20 km grid basis. The European data sets of precipitation and air temperature (time period 1901-2000, monthly resolution), (Mitchell et al. 2004) were used to derive long-term averages. As we focus on agricultural areas we included CORINE data (2006) to extract arable land. The resulting BATs under co-consideration of the main soil textures (clay, silt, sand and loam) were investigated per environmental zone (ENZs, Metzger et al. 2005) that represents similar conditions for precipitation, temperature and relief to identify BAT ranges and hence turnover conditions for each ENZ. Re_clim was quantified by climatic time series of more than 250 weather stations across Europe presented by Klein Tank et al. (2002). Daily temperature, precipitation and potential evapotranspiration (maximal thermal extent) were used to calculate soil temperature and water storage in the arable layer thereby differentiating soil textures exclusively in main types (clay, silt, sand and loam). Similar to the BAT investigation it was of further interest to investigate how the re_clim parameter range behaves per ENZ. We will discuss the analyzed results of both strategies in a comparative manner to assess SOM turnover conditions across Europe. Both concepts help to separate different turnover activities and to indicate organic matter input in order to maintain the given SOM. The assessment could provide local recommendations for local adaptations of soil management practices. CATCH-C is funded within the 7th Framework Programme for Research, Technological Development and Demonstration, Theme 2 - Biotechnologies, Agriculture & Food (Grant Agreement N 289782).

  4. Humic substances biological activity at the plant-soil interface

    PubMed Central

    Trevisan, Sara; Francioso, Ornella; Nardi, Serenella

    2010-01-01

    Humic substances (HS) represent the organic material mainly widespread in nature. HS have positive effects on plant physiology by improving soil structure and fertility and by influencing nutrient uptake and root architecture. The biochemical and molecular mechanisms underlying these events are only partially known. HS have been shown to contain auxin and an auxin-like activity of humic substances has been proposed, but support to this hypothesis is fragmentary. In this review article, we are giving an overview of available data concerning molecular structures and biological activities of humic substances, with special emphasis on their hormone-like activities. PMID:20495384

  5. Detection and Investigation of Soil Biological Activity against Meloidogyne incognita

    PubMed Central

    Bent, E.; Loffredo, A.; McKenry, M. V.; Becker, J. O.; Borneman, J.

    2008-01-01

    Greenhouse experiments with two susceptible hosts of Meloidogyne incognita, a dwarf tomato and wheat, led to the identification of a soil in which the root-knot nematode population was reduced 5- to 16-fold compared to identical but pasteurized soil two months after infestation with 280 M. incognita J2/100 cm3 soil. This suppressive soil was subjected to various temperature, fumigation and dilution treatments, planted with tomato, and infested with 1,000 eggs of M. incognita/100 cm3 soil. Eight weeks after nematode infestation, distinct differences in nematode population densities were observed among the soil treatments, suggesting the suppressiveness had a biological nature. A fungal rRNA gene analysis (OFRG) performed on M. incognita egg masses collected at the end of the greenhouse experiments identified 11 fungal phylotypes, several of which exhibited associations with one or more of the nematode population density measurements (egg masses, eggs or J2). The phylotype containing rRNA genes with high sequence identity to Pochonia chlamydosporia exhibited the strongest negative associations. The negative correlation between the densities of the P. chlamydosporia genes and the nematodes was corroborated by an analysis using a P. chlamydosporia-selective qPCR assay. PMID:19259527

  6. IMPACT OF HIGH SOIL PHOSPHORUS LEVELS ON SOIL BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY AND PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF OXISOLS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    For the Cerrado region of Brazil to be agriculturally productive, large amount of P fertilizer must be added to overcome the P-fixation capacity of these Oxisol soils. Additions of large amounts of fertilizer affect the chemistry of the soil and may affect the soil physical and biological properties...

  7. Temporal and spatial variability of soil biological activity at European scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mallast, Janine; Rühlmann, Jörg

    2015-04-01

    The CATCH-C project aims to identify and improve the farm-compatibility of Soil Management Practices including to promote productivity, climate change mitigation and soil quality. The focus of this work concentrates on turnover conditions for soil organic matter (SOM). SOM is fundamental for the maintenance of quality and functions of soils while SOM storage is attributed a great importance in terms of climate change mitigation. The turnover conditions depend on soil biological activity characterized by climate and soil properties. Soil biological activity was investigated using two model concepts: a) Re_clim parameter within the ICBM (Introductory Carbon Balance Model) (Andrén & Kätterer 1997) states a climatic factor summarizing soil water storage and soil temperature and its influence on soil biological activity. b) BAT (biological active time) approach derived from model CANDY (CArbon and Nitrogen Dynamic) (Franko & Oelschlägel 1995) expresses the variation of soil moisture, soil temperature and soil aeration as a time scale and an indicator of biological activity for soil organic matter (SOM) turnover. During an earlier stage both model concepts, Re_clim and BAT, were applied based on a monthly data to assess spatial variability of turnover conditions across Europe. This hampers the investigation of temporal variability (e.g. intra-annual). The improved stage integrates daily data of more than 350 weather stations across Europe presented by Klein Tank et al. (2002). All time series data (temperature, precipitation and potential evapotranspiration and soil texture derived from the European Soil Database (JRC 2006)), are used to calculate soil biological activity in the arable layer. The resulting BAT and Re_clim values were spatio-temporal investigated. While "temporal" refers to a long-term trend analysis, "spatial" includes the investigation of soil biological activity variability per environmental zone (ENZ, Metzger et al. 2005 representing similar conditions for precipitation, temperature and relief) to identify ranges and hence turnover conditions for each ENZ. We will discuss the analyzed results of both concepts to assess SOM turnover conditions across Europe for historical weather data and for Spain focusing on climate scenarios. Both concepts help to separate different turnover activities and to indicate organic matter input in order to maintain the given SOM. The assessment could provide recommendations for adaptations of soil management practices. CATCH-C is funded within the 7th Framework Programme for Research, Technological Development and Demonstration, Theme 2 - Biotechnologies, Agriculture & Food (Grant Agreement N° 289782).

  8. Potential for quantification of biologically-active soil carbon with potassium permanganate (short communication)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Abstract Carbon dioxide evolution during laboratory incubation is frequently measured to estimate quantities of biologically-active soil C, but the time required and possible carbon dioxide leaks makes a rapid substitute attractive. Active soil C pools were measured using both dilute potassium perm...

  9. SOIL BIOLOGY AND ECOLOGY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The term "Soil Biology", the study of organism groups living in soil, (plants, lichens, algae, moss, bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes, and arthropods), predates "Soil Ecology", the study of interactions between soil organisms as mediated by the soil physical environment. oil ...

  10. Effects of gentle remediation technologies on soil biological and biochemical activities - a review.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marschner, B.; Haag, R.; Renella, G.

    2009-04-01

    Remediation technologies for contaminated sites are generally designed to reduce risks for human health, groundwater or plant quality. While some drastic remediation measures such as soil excavation, thermal treatment or soil washing eliminate or strongly reduce soil life, in-situ treatments involving plants or immobilizing additives may also restore soil functionality by establishing or promoting a well structured and active community of soil organisms. Biological parameters that are sensitive to contaminants and other pedo-environmental conditions and which contribute to biogeochemical nutrient cycles, can be used as synthetic indicators of the progress and also the efficiency of given remediation approaches. Data from long-term studies on re-vegetated mine spoils show that biological and biochemical activity is enhanced with increasing plant density and diversity. Among the soil amendments, most measures that introduce organic matter or alkalinity to the contaminated soils also improve microbial or faunal parameters. Only few amendments, such as phosphates and chelators have deleterious effects on soil biota. In this review, soil microbial biomass and the activity of the enzymes phosphatase and arylsulphatase are identified as suitable and sensitive biological indicators for soil health. The results and future research needs are are summarized.

  11. [Biological activity of ancient cultivated soil with buried horizons (the Iverskii monastery, XVII century)].

    PubMed

    Novikov, V V; Stepanov, A L

    2000-01-01

    The biological activity of an ancient cultivated soil that has been in intense agricultural use since approximately the first half of the XVII century was studied. The potential biological activity of the buried horizon of the antient cultivated soil was higher than that of its modern horizon or that of the noncultivated soil of an adjacent territory occurring under similar lithological and geomorphological conditions. A decrease rate of oxidative processes (decreased rates of CO2 production and CH4 oxidation) and an increased rate of reductive processes (denitrification and nitrogen fixation) were found in the buried horizon. A high potential denitrification activity (with predominant formation of nitrous oxide) was found in the buried horizon; in the upper horizon, the end product was molecular nitrogen. PMID:10920818

  12. Impact of fungicide mancozeb at different application rates on soil microbial populations, soil biological processes, and enzyme activities in soil.

    PubMed

    Walia, Abhishek; Mehta, Preeti; Guleria, Shiwani; Chauhan, Anjali; Shirkot, C K

    2014-01-01

    The use of fungicides is the continuous exercise particularly in orchard crops where fungal diseases, such as white root rot, have the potential to destroy horticultural crops rendering them unsaleable. In view of above problem, the present study examines the effect of different concentrations of mancozeb (0-2000 ppm) at different incubation periods for their harmful side effects on various microbiological processes, soil microflora, and soil enzymes in alluvial soil (pH 6.8) collected from apple orchards of Shimla in Himachal Pradesh (India). Low concentrations of mancozeb were found to be deleterious towards fungal and actinomycetes population while higher concentrations (1000 and 2000 ppm) were found to be detrimental to soil bacteria. Mancozeb impaired the process of ammonification and nitrification. Similar results were observed for nitrifying and ammonifying bacteria. Phosphorus solubilization was increased by higher concentration of mancozeb, that is, 250 ppm and above. In unamended soil, microbial biomass carbon and carbon mineralization were adversely affected by mancozeb. Soil enzymes, that is, amylase, invertase, and phosphatase showed adverse and disruptive effect when mancozeb used was above 10 ppm in unamended soil. These results conclude that, to lessen the harmful effects in soil biological processes caused by this fungicide, addition of higher amount of nitrogen based fertilizers is required. PMID:25478598

  13. Impact of Fungicide Mancozeb at Different Application Rates on Soil Microbial Populations, Soil Biological Processes, and Enzyme Activities in Soil

    PubMed Central

    Mehta, Preeti; Guleria, Shiwani; Chauhan, Anjali; Shirkot, C. K.

    2014-01-01

    The use of fungicides is the continuous exercise particularly in orchard crops where fungal diseases, such as white root rot, have the potential to destroy horticultural crops rendering them unsaleable. In view of above problem, the present study examines the effect of different concentrations of mancozeb (0–2000 ppm) at different incubation periods for their harmful side effects on various microbiological processes, soil microflora, and soil enzymes in alluvial soil (pH 6.8) collected from apple orchards of Shimla in Himachal Pradesh (India). Low concentrations of mancozeb were found to be deleterious towards fungal and actinomycetes population while higher concentrations (1000 and 2000 ppm) were found to be detrimental to soil bacteria. Mancozeb impaired the process of ammonification and nitrification. Similar results were observed for nitrifying and ammonifying bacteria. Phosphorus solubilization was increased by higher concentration of mancozeb, that is, 250 ppm and above. In unamended soil, microbial biomass carbon and carbon mineralization were adversely affected by mancozeb. Soil enzymes, that is, amylase, invertase, and phosphatase showed adverse and disruptive effect when mancozeb used was above 10 ppm in unamended soil. These results conclude that, to lessen the harmful effects in soil biological processes caused by this fungicide, addition of higher amount of nitrogen based fertilizers is required. PMID:25478598

  14. [Soil biological activities at maize seedling stage under application of slow/controlled release nitrogen fertilizers].

    PubMed

    Li, Dongpo; Wu, Zhijie; Chen, Lijun; Liang, Chenghua; Zhang, Lili; Wang, Weicheng; Yang, Defu

    2006-06-01

    With pot experiment and simulating field ecological environment, this paper studied the effects of different slow/ controlled release N fertilizers on the soil nitrate - reductase and urease activities and microbial biomass C and N at maize seedling stage. The results showed that granular urea amended with dicyandiamide (DCD) and N-(n-bultyl) thiophosphoric triamide (NBPT) induced the highest soil nitrate-reductase activity, granular urea brought about the highest soil urease activity and microbial biomass C and N, while starch acetate (SA)-coated granular urea, SA-coated granular urea amended with DCD, methyl methacrylate (MMA) -coated granular urea amended with DCD, and no N fertilization gave a higher soil urease activity. Soil microbial C and N had a similar variation trend after applying various kinds of test slow/controlled release N fertilizers, and were the lowest after applying SA-coated granular urea amended with DCD and NBPT. Coated granular urea amended with inhibitors had a stronger effect on soil biological activities than coated granular urea, and MMA-coating had a better effect than SA-coating. PMID:16964940

  15. Soil organic matter dynamics under Beech and Hornbeam as affected by soil biological activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kooijman, A. M.; Cammeraat, L. H.

    2009-04-01

    Organic matter dynamics are highly affected both the soil fauna as well as the source of organic matter, having important consequences for the spatial heterogeneity of organic matter storage and conversion. We studied oldgrowth mixed deciduous forests in Central-Luxemburg on decalcified dolomitic marl, dominated by high-degradable hornbeam (Carpinus betulus L.) or low-degradable beech (Fagus sylvatica L.). Decomposition was measured both in the laboratory and in the field. Litter decomposition was higher for hornbeam than for beech under laboratory conditions, but especially in the field, which is mainly to be attributed to macro-fauna activity, specifically to earthworms (Lumbricus terrestris and Allolobophora species). We also investigated differences between beech and hornbeam with regard to litter input and habitat conditions. Total litter input was the same, but contribution of beech and hornbeam litter clearly differed between the two species. Also, mass of the ectorganic horizon and soil C:N ratio were significantly higher for beech, which was reflected in clear differences in the development of ectorganic profiles on top of the soil. Under beech a mull-moder was clearly present with a well developed fermentation and litter horizon, whereas under hornbeam all litter is incorporated into the soil, leaving the mineral soil surface bear in late summer (mull-type of horizon). In addition to litter quality, litter decomposition was affected by pH and soil moisture. Both pH and soil moisture were higher under hornbeam than under beech, which may reflect differences in soil development and litter quality effects over longer time scales. Under beech, dense layers of low-degradable litter may prevent erosion, and increase clay eluviation and leaching of base cations, leading to acid and dry conditions, which further decrease litter decay. Under hornbeam, the soil is not protected by a litter layer, and clay eluviation and acidification may be counteracted by erosion, and earthworms bringing clay and base cations back to the surface. It may be concluded that beech and hornbeam stands show clear differences in both input and decomposition rates. They are also fixed to habitat conditions that can be clearly differentiated in the field allowing for a spatial analysis of organic matter dynamics and input.

  16. [Effect of the vegetative cover on the biological activity of the soil of Chaco Arido].

    PubMed

    Abril, A; Acosta, M; Bachmeier, O; Rollan, A

    1993-01-01

    Vegetation plays a primal role in arid ecosystems, since it creates microclimate conditions that moderate the characteristics of the region whereby the rational use of vegetal resources is fundamental. Felling, clearing and overgrazing lead to decrease in organic contribution and stimulate soil compaction, causing an alteration of microbial activity, with losses in nutrient turnover. The global biological activity is a soil parameter easy to obtain and indicates the presence and diversity of soil life as well as substrate availability and is useful in order to characterize soil potential fertility. This work was carried out in Natural Forest Reserve Chancan, Province of Crdoba (Argentina), which is representative of Argentine Dry Chaco. Dominant tree species are: Prosopis flexuosa and Aspidosperma quebracho blanco. The global biological activity (GBA) was measured along one year, under trees, under shrubs and in interspaces. Soil samples were taken monthly from plots with four management systems: 1) forest, ii) selective clearing (only dominant species remain), iii) bush (clearing invaded by Larrea sp) and iv) grazing (cleared area, neither trees nor shrubs). GBA was evaluated using the CO2 release method, after ten days of incubation. It is concluded that in the plots with grasses and under the trees GBA was higher than with other treatments. The lesser GBA was detected in bushes and interspaces. All differences were more prominent during extreme temperature months. No significant difference between both species of dominant trees was observed. PMID:8210407

  17. Three-dimensional structure and cyanobacterial activity within a desert biological soil crust.

    PubMed

    Raanan, Hagai; Felde, Vincent J M N L; Peth, Stephan; Drahorad, Sylvie; Ionescu, Danny; Eshkol, Gil; Treves, Haim; Felix-Henningsen, Peter; Berkowicz, Simon M; Keren, Nir; Horn, Rainer; Hagemann, Martin; Kaplan, Aaron

    2016-02-01

    Desert biological soil crusts (BSCs) are formed by adhesion of soil particles to polysaccharides excreted by filamentous cyanobacteria, the pioneers and main producers in this habitat. Biological soil crust destruction is a central factor leading to land degradation and desertification. We study the effect of BSC structure on cyanobacterial activity. Micro-scale structural analysis using X-ray microtomography revealed a vesiculated layer 1.5-2.5?mm beneath the surface in close proximity to the cyanobacterial location. Light profiles showed attenuation with depth of 1%-5% of surface light within 1?mm but also revealed the presence of 'light pockets', coinciding with the vesiculated layer, where the irradiance was 10-fold higher than adjacent crust parts at the same depth. Maximal photosynthetic activity, examined by O2 concentration profiles, was observed 1?mm beneath the surface and another peak in association with the 'light pockets'. Thus, photosynthetic activity may not be visible to currently used remote sensing techniques, suggesting that BSCs' contribution to terrestrial productivity is underestimated. Exposure to irradiance higher than 10% full sunlight diminished chlorophyll fluorescence, whereas O2 evolution and CO2 uptake rose, indicating that fluorescence did not reflect cyanobacterial photosynthetic activity. Our data also indicate that although resistant to high illumination, the BSC-inhabiting cyanobacteria function as 'low-light adapted' organisms. PMID:25809542

  18. Impact of reclamation treatment on the biological activity of soils of the solonetz complex in Western Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berezin, L. V.; Khamova, O. F.; Paderina, E. V.; Gindemit, A. M.

    2014-11-01

    The abundance and activity of the soil microflora were studied in a field experiment with the use of green manure crops to assess the impact of reclamation measures on the biological activity of soils of the solonetz complex. The number of microorganisms in the plow soil horizon increased in the background of the green fallows as compared to the black ones. Coefficients of mineralization, immobilization, and transformation of organic compounds were calculated for different variants of the soil treatment. The value of the mineralization coefficient indicates the intense decomposition of the green manure that entered the soil. In the first year, peas were actively decomposed, while oats, in the second year (aftereffect). The activity of the soil enzymes (invertase, urease, and catalase) was determined. A close relationship between the catalase activity and the intensity of the microbiological processes in the soils was revealed.

  19. EFFECT OF NITROGEN AND METAL ADDITIONS ON NITROGEN FIXATION ACTIVITY IN BIOLOGICAL SOIL CRUSTS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexander, K.; Lui, D.; Anbar, A. D.; Garcia-Pichel, F.; Hartnett, H. E.

    2009-12-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are diverse consortia of microorganisms that live in intimate association with soils in arid environments. Also called cryptogamic or microbiotic crusts, these communities can include cyanobacteria, algae, heterotrophic bacteria, fungi, lichens, and mosses. Together, these organisms provide many services to their surrounding ecosystems, including reduction of water runoff, promotion of water infiltration, and prevention of soil erosion. The cyanobacteria and algae also provide fixed carbon (C) to the soil through photosynthesis, and because atmospheric deposition of nitrogen (N) in arid environments is low, the major input of biologically available N comes from cyanobacteria capable of converting nitrogen gas (N2) to ammonium (NH4+). Biological soil crusts are easily destroyed by livestock grazing, motor vehicle travel, and many forms of recreational and agricultural land use. Loss of BSC cover can leave the soil vulnerable to intense erosion that can remove the nutrients necessary to sustain plant and animal life, thus accelerating the process of desertification. In order to preserve existing crusts and encourage the development of new crusts, it is crucial to understand the nutrient requirements of metabolism and growth in these microbial communities. This study investigated the affect of nitrogen and metal additions on N2-fixation activity in cyanobacterially-dominated crusts from the Colorado Plateau near Moab, Utah. Although N2-fixation has been studied in this system before, the affect of nutrient additions on N2-fixation activity has not been documented. The goal of this work was to understand how N and metal supplementation affects crust N metabolism. Three experiments were conducted to observe how N2-fixation activity changed with the addition of N, molybdenum (Mo), and vanadium (V). Molybdenum and vanadium were chosen because they are most commonly found at the active site of the enzyme nitrogenase, the molecule responsible for the biological conversion of N2 to NH4+. The Mo-dependent version of the enzyme is the most efficient, and it is used by the majority of N2-fixing organisms. Elements were added as aqueous solutions of NH4NO3, Na2MoO4, and Na3VO4 respectively. Nitrogen fixation potential was assayed using a modified acetylene reduction technique. Results from the N-addition experiment show that when N is provided, BSC organisms stop N2-fixation activity. This confirms that under natural conditions, the community is limited with respect to N. In general, crusts under Mo-addition fix at higher rates than crusts with no added Mo. This implies that crusts may also be limited with respect to Mo. However, contrary to our expectations, crusts fix at lower rates when V is added as compared to a no-V control. It is possible that this is the result of V-toxicity, or that V competes with the uptake and utilization of available Mo, thus exacerbating Mo-limitation. Experiments are currently underway to investigate how the geochemistry of the soil porewater changes as a result of these nutrient additions.

  20. Soil biology for resilient healthy soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    What is a resilient healthy soil? A resilient soil is capable of recovering or adapting to stress; the health of the living/biological component of the soil is crucial for soil resiliency. Soil health is tightly coupled to the concept of soil quality (Text Box 1) and the terms are frequently used ...

  1. Effect of cassava mill effluent on biological activity of soil microbial community.

    PubMed

    Igbinosa, Etinosa O

    2015-07-01

    This study assessed the effect of cassava effluent on soil microbiological characteristics and enzymatic activities were investigated in soil samples. Soil properties and heavy metal concentrations were evaluated using standard soil analytical and spectroscopic methods, respectively. The microbiological parameters measured include microbial biomass carbon, basal soil respiration, catalase, urease, dehydrogenase activities and number of culturable aerobic bacteria, fungi and actinomycetes. The pH and temperature regime vary significantly (p?Soil organic carbon content gave significant positive correlations with microbial biomass carbon, basal soil respiration, catalase activity and dehydrogenase activity (r?=?0.450, 0.461, 0.574 and 0.591 at p?soil microbial density demonstrates a marked decrease in total culturable numbers of the different microbial groups of the polluted soil samples. Soil contamination decreased catalase, urease and dehydrogenase activities. The findings revealed that soil enzymes can be used as indices of soil contamination and bio-indicator of soil quality. PMID:26055654

  2. Organic matter and biological activity of postagrogenic soils in the southern taiga using the example of Kostroma oblast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vladychenskii, A. S.; Telesnina, V. M.; Rumyantseva, K. A.; Chalaya, T. A.

    2013-05-01

    The dynamics of the humus status (some indices) and the biological activity of agrosoddy-podzolic soils in the course of the natural forest regeneration were studied based on the example of the soils of two succession series, which differed both in their parent rock and the history of their development. Upon the overgrowing of the croplands, the humus content increased, and its distribution within the soil profile became more differentiated. As a hayfield was overgrown, the humus content decreased to some extent at the earliest stages. The parameters of the humus status more clearly changed in the succession series with the light-textured soils, which had a relatively simple history of agricultural development. The biological activity mainly decreased at the earlier succession stages and became higher with the increasing productivity and greater amounts of easily decomposing falloff entering the soil. This relationship was especially distinctly revealed in the grass communities.

  3. Assessing the biological activity of oil-contaminated soddy-podzolic soils with different textures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vershinin, A. A.; Petrov, A. M.; Akaikin, D. V.; Ignat'ev, Yu. A.

    2014-02-01

    The respiratory activity features in oil-contaminated soddy-podzolic soils of different textures have been studied. Unidirectional processes occur in contaminated loamy and loamy sandy soddy-podzolic soils; their intensities depend on the soil parameters. The mineralization rates of the oil products and the activity of the microflora in loamy soils exceed the corresponding parameters for loamy sandy soils. The long-term impact of oil and its transformation products results in more important disturbances of the microbial community in light soils. It has been shown that light soils containing 9% oil require longer time periods or more intensive remediation measures for the restoration of soil microbial cenoses disturbed by the pollutant.

  4. The influence of bacterial-humus preparations on the biological activity of soils polluted with oil products and heavy metals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozlova, E. N.; Stepanov, A. L.; Lysak, L. V.

    2015-04-01

    The influence of bacterial-humus preparations based on Gumigel ( Agrosintez Company) on the biological activity of soddy-podzolic soil polluted with Pb(CH3COO)2 and gasoline was studied in a model experiment. Some indicators of biological activity are shown to depend on soil pollution to different extents. The process of nitrogen fixation and the activity of dehydrogenase and phosphatase were mostly inhibited by Pb(CH3COO)2 and gasoline. Gasoline compared to Pb(CH3COO)2 inhibited the soil biological activity to a greater extent. The bacterial-humus preparations exerted a significant positive effect on the biological activity of the polluted soils manifested in the increase of the total number of bacteria and of the enzyme activity (1.5-5.0 times), in the intensification of nitrogen fixation and denitrification (3-8 times), as well as in the increase in the biomass of the plants grown (1.5-2.0 times). The application of bacterial suspensions of pure cultures or the microbial complex without the preparations of humic acids did not always give a positive effect.

  5. Effect of different crops on soil organic matter and biological activity in Oxisols under three different crops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toledo, Diana Marcela; Arzuaga, Silvia; Dalurzo, Humberto; Zornoza, Raúl; Vazquez, Sara

    2015-04-01

    The objective of this work was to evaluate changes in soil organic matter in Oxisols under different crops compared to native rainforest, and to assess if acid phosphatase activity (APA) could be a good indicator for SOC changes and soil quality. The experimental design consisted of four completely randomized blocks with four treatments: subtropical rainforest (F); yerba mate crop (I) (Ilex paraguariensis SH.); citrus crop (C) (Citrus unshiu Marc); and tobacco crop (T) (Nicotiana tabacum L.). Soil samples were taken at 0-10; 10-20 and 20-30 cm depths. The variables measured were soil organic carbon (SOC), APA, clay content, pH, total nitrogen (Nt), available phosphorus (P) and CO2 emissions. All data were analyzed by ANOVA to assess the effects of land-use changes. The treatment means were compared through Duncan's multiple range tests (p<0.05). The relationship between variables was determined with a simple correlation analysis and with a multiple linear regression analysis through the stepwise method. These soils showed an acid reaction and their clay content was over 650 g kg-1 for the three depths. SOC and N contents were higher in native soils, intermediate for the citrus crop, and lower under both tobacco and yerba mate crops. CO2 emissions were higher in the rainforest (47.32 kg ha-1 of CO2) than in cultivated soils, which indicates that biological activity is enhanced in rainforest soils where substrates for soil biota and fauna are more readily available. The variability of 76% in APA was explained by total nitrogen, which is closely related to soil organic matter, and by available P. Conversion of subtropical rainforests into agricultural lands reduced SOC content and acid phosphatase activity, thereby lowering soil quality. In this study, acid phosphatase activity proved to be a sensitive indicator to detect changes from pristine to cropped soils, but it failed to distinguish differences among crop systems.

  6. The impact of land use on biological activity of agriculture soils. An State-of-the-Art

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morugán-Coronado, Alicia; Cerdà, Artemi; García-Orenes, Fuensanta

    2014-05-01

    Biological activity is a crucial soil property affecting soil sustainability and crop production. The unsuitable land management can lead to a loss in soil fertility and a reduction in the abundance and diversity of soil microorganisms. This can be as a consequence of high erosion rates due to the mismanagement of farmers (Cerdà et al., 2009a). However ecological practices and some organic amendments can promote the activities of soil microbial communities, and increase its biodiversity (García-Orenes et al., 2010; 2013). The impact of land use in microbiological properties of agriculture soil are presented and discussed in this review. Biological activity is quantified by microbial soil communities and soil enzyme activities to interpret the effects of soil management practices (Morugán-Coronado et al., 2013). The aim of biological activity tests is to give a reliable description of the state of agricultural soils under the effect of different land uses. Numerous methods have been used to determine the impact of land uses on microbiological properties. The current used methods for detecting microbial diversity are based on molecular techniques centered on the 16S and 18S rRNA encoding sequences such as CLPP: community-level physiological profiles; T-RFLP: terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism; DGGE: denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis; OFRG: oligonucleotide fingerprinting of rRNA genes, ARISA: Automated Ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis, SSCP: single-strand conformation polymorphism. And techniques based on the cellular composition of the microbes such as PLFA: phospholipid fatty acid analysis. Other methods are based on the activity of microbes, for example, Cmic: microbial biomass carbon; SIR: substrate induced respiration; BSR: Basal soil respiration; qCO2 metabolic quotient; enzymatic activities (Urease, ß-glucosidase and phosphatase) (Deng, 2012). Agricultural land management can contribute to increased rates of erosion due to desiccation, mechanical destruction, soil compaction, reduce pore volume, and disruption of access to food resources (Cerdà et al., 2009b). Furthermore, it can lead to a loss in soil fertility and reduction in the abundance and diversity of soil microorganism (Caravaca et al., 2002). Nevertheless, some organic fertilizers, such as manure, waste water and sewage sludge, promote the activities of soil microbial communities (Morugán-Coronado et al., 2011; Balota et al., 2013; Macci et al., 2013). On the other hand, land use influences soil microbial processes by changing the quantity and quality of plant residues entering the soil and their spatial distribution, thorough changes in nutrients and inputs (García-Orenes et al., 2009; 2012). The abuse of pesticides can drastically modify the function and structure of microbial communities, altering the terrestrial ecosystems, which has important implication for soil quality (Pampulha et al., 2006). Soil quality is important for the sustainable development of terrestrial ecosystem (Paz-Ferreiro & Fu, 2013; Vasconcellos et al., 2013). This paper will review the State-of-the-Art of the scientific knowledge on the impact of land use on the biological activity in agriculture soils Acknowledgements The research projects GL2008-02879/BTE, LEDDRA 243857 and RECARE supported this research. References Balota, E. L., Yada, I.F., Amaral, H., Nakatani, A.S., Dick, R.P., Coyne, M.S. 2013. Long-term land use influences soil microbial biomass p and s, phosphatase and arylsulfatase activities, and mineralization in a brazilian oxisol. Land degradation & development. DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2242 Caravaca F, Masciandaro G, Ceccanti B. 2002. Land use in relation to soil chemical and biochemical properties in a semiarid Mediterranean environment. Soil and Tillage Research 68: 23-30. Cerdà, A., Flanagan, D.C., le Bissonnais, Y., Boardman, J. 2009a. Soil erosion and agriculture Soil and Tillage Research 106, 107-108. DOI: 10.1016/j.still.2009.1 Cerdà, A., Giménez-Morera, A.G., Bodí, M.B. 2009b. Soil and water losses from new citrus orchards growing on sloped soils in the western Mediterranean basin. Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 34, 1822-1830. Deng, H. 2012. A review of diversity-stability relationship of soil microbial community: what do we not know? Journal of Environmental Sciences 24(6),1027-35. DOI:10.1016/S1001-0742(11)60846-2 García-Orenes, F., Cerdà, A., Mataix-Solera, J., Guerrero, C., Bodí, M.B., Arcenegui, V., Zornoza, R. & Sempere, J.G. 2009. Effects of agricultural management on surface soil properties and soil-water losses in eastern Spain. Soil and Tillage Research 106, 117-123. 10.1016/j.still.2009.06.002 García-Orenes, F., Guerrero, C., Roldán, A.,Mataix-Solera, J., Cerdà, A., Campoy, M., Zornoza, R., Bárcenas, G., Caravaca. F. 2010. Soil microbial biomass and activity under different agricultural management systems in a semiarid Mediterranean agroecosystem. Soil and Tillage Research 109, 110-115. 10.1016/j.still.2010.05.005. García-Orenes, F., Morugán-Coronado, A., Zornoza, R., Scow, K. 2013. Changes in Soil Microbial Community Structure Influenced by Agricultural Management Practices in a Mediterranean Agro-Ecosystem. PLoS ONE 8:e80522. García-Orenes, F., Roldán, A., Mataix-Solera, J., Cerdà, A., Campoy, M., Arcenegui, V., Caravaca, F. 2012. Soil structural stability and erosion rates influenced by agricultural management practices in a semi-arid Mediterranean agro-ecosystem. Soil Use and Management 28, 571-579. DOI: 10.1111/j.1475-2743.2012.00451.x Macci, C., Doni, S., Peruzzi, E., Mennone, C., Masciandaro, G. 2013. Biostimulation of soil microbial activity through organic fertilizer and almond tree association. Land degradation & development. DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2234 Morugán-Coronado, A., García-Orenes, F., Mataix-Solera, J., Arcenegui, V., Mataix-Beneyto, J. 2011. Short-term effects of treated wastewater irrigation on Mediterranean calcareous soil. Soil and Tillage Research 112 (1), 18-26 Morugán-Coronado, A., García-Orenes, F., Mataix-Solera, J., Arcenegui, V., Mataix-Beneyto, J. 2013. Application of soil quality indices to assess the status of agricultural soils irrigated with treated wastewaters. Solid Earth 4 (1), 119-127 2013 Pampulha ME, Oliveira A (2006) Impact of an herbicide combination of bromoxynil and prosulfuron on soil microorganisms. Current Microbiology 53: 238-243. Paz-Ferreiro, J., Fu., S. 2013. Biological indices for soil quality evaluation: perspectives and limitations. Land degradation & development. DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2262 Vasconcellos, R. L. F., Bonfim, J. A., Baretta, D., Cardoso, E.J.B.N. 2013. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and glomalin-related soil protein as potential indicators of soil quality in a recuperation gradient of the Atlantic forest in brazil. Land degradation & development. DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2228

  7. Ecological and geographical regularities of changes in the biological activity of automorphic soils on the foothills and adjacent plains of the Central Caucasus region (Kabardino-Balkarian Republic)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gorobtsova, O. N.; Khezheva, F. V.; Uligova, T. S.; Tembotov, R. Kh.

    2015-03-01

    The biochemical properties inherent to the main types of automorphic soils developed in different bioclimatic conditions of Elbrus and Terek variants of the vertical zonality within Kabardino-Balkaria were compared. The natural-climatic conditions of these variants noticeably affect the soil cover pattern. The ratio of the oxidase and hydrolase activities is sensitive to the moisture conditions in which these soils are formed. The redox processes are more active in drier conditions, whereas hydrolytic processes are more active under higher moisture. The level of the biological activity of the automorphic soils is estimated using the integral index of the ecological-biological soil status.

  8. Elevated temperature altered photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizopshere soil under cadmium stress

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Xia; Zhao, YongHua; Wang, WenKe; He, Yunhua

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring on photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and on organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium (Cd) stress. Elevated temperature was associated with increased soluble sugars, reducing sugars, starch, and total sugars, and with decreased amino acids in wheat seedlings under Cd stress. Elevated temperature improved total soluble sugars, free amino acids, soluble phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress. The activity of amylase, phenol oxidase, invertase, β-glucosidase, and l-asparaginase in rhizosphere soil was significantly improved by elevated temperature under Cd stress; while cellulase, neutral phosphatase, and urease activity significantly decreased. Elevated temperature significantly improved bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes, and total microorganisms abundance and fluorescein diacetate activity under Cd stress. In conclusion, slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring improved the carbohydrate levels in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress in the short term. In addition, elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring stimulated available Cd by affecting pH, DOC, phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil, which resulted in the improvement of the Cd uptake by wheat seedlings. PMID:26395070

  9. Elevated temperature altered photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizopshere soil under cadmium stress.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xia; Zhao, YongHua; Wang, WenKe; He, Yunhua

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring on photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and on organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium (Cd) stress. Elevated temperature was associated with increased soluble sugars, reducing sugars, starch, and total sugars, and with decreased amino acids in wheat seedlings under Cd stress. Elevated temperature improved total soluble sugars, free amino acids, soluble phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress. The activity of amylase, phenol oxidase, invertase, β-glucosidase, and l-asparaginase in rhizosphere soil was significantly improved by elevated temperature under Cd stress; while cellulase, neutral phosphatase, and urease activity significantly decreased. Elevated temperature significantly improved bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes, and total microorganisms abundance and fluorescein diacetate activity under Cd stress. In conclusion, slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring improved the carbohydrate levels in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress in the short term. In addition, elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring stimulated available Cd by affecting pH, DOC, phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil, which resulted in the improvement of the Cd uptake by wheat seedlings. PMID:26395070

  10. Elevated temperature altered photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizopshere soil under cadmium stress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jia, Xia; Zhao, Yonghua; Wang, Wenke; He, Yunhua

    2015-09-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring on photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and on organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium (Cd) stress. Elevated temperature was associated with increased soluble sugars, reducing sugars, starch, and total sugars, and with decreased amino acids in wheat seedlings under Cd stress. Elevated temperature improved total soluble sugars, free amino acids, soluble phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress. The activity of amylase, phenol oxidase, invertase, β-glucosidase, and L-asparaginase in rhizosphere soil was significantly improved by elevated temperature under Cd stress; while cellulase, neutral phosphatase, and urease activity significantly decreased. Elevated temperature significantly improved bacteria, fungi, actinomycetes, and total microorganisms abundance and fluorescein diacetate activity under Cd stress. In conclusion, slightly elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring improved the carbohydrate levels in wheat seedlings and organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under Cd stress in the short term. In addition, elevated atmospheric temperature in the spring stimulated available Cd by affecting pH, DOC, phenolic acids, and organic acids in rhizosphere soil, which resulted in the improvement of the Cd uptake by wheat seedlings.

  11. Potential nitrogen fixation activity of different aged biological soil crusts from rehabilitated grasslands of the hilly Loess Plateau, China

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zhao, Y.; Xu, M.; Belnap, J.

    2010-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) cover up to 6070% of the soil surface in grasslands rehabilitated during the "Grain for Green" project implemented in the hilly Loess Plateau region in 1999. As biocrusts fix nitrogen (N), they are an important part of restoring soil fertility. We measured nitrogenase activity (NA) in biocrusts from sites rehabilitated at six different time periods to estimate 1) the effects of moisture content and temperature on NA in biocrusts of different ages and 2) the potential N contribution from biocrusts to soils and plants in this region. Results show that NA in the biocrusts was mostly controlled by the species composition, as the activity of biocrusts dominated by free-living soil cyanobacteria was significantly higher than that of moss-dominated biocrusts. Nitrogenase activity was also influenced by soil moisture content and ambient temperature, with a significant decline in activity when moisture levels were decreased to 20% field water-holding capacity. The optimal temperature for NA was 3540 C and 3040 C for cyanobacteria- and moss-dominated biocrusts, respectively. Biocrust fixed N is likely an important source of N in this ecosystem, as we estimated annual potential N inputs per hectare in these grasslands to be up to 13 kg N ha-1 and 4 kg N ha-1 for cyanobacteria- and moss-dominated biocrusts, respectively.

  12. The effect of mustard gas on the biological activity of soil.

    PubMed

    Medvedeva, N; Polyak, Yu; Kuzikova, I; Orlova, O; Zharikov, G

    2008-03-01

    A special group of substances that are very dangerous for the biosphere includes war gases such as mustard gas (bis(2-chloroethyl)sulphide). The influence of mustard gas hydrolysis products (MGHPs) on soil microbiota has been investigated. These substances bear numerous toxic effects on soil microorganisms. They change significantly the number and the specific composition of soil microbiota and inhibit the enzyme activity of soils. The main "ecological targets" of mustard and its hydrolysis products' toxic action have been determined. MGHPs affect the growth and reproduction of soil micromycetes, as well as their morphological and cultural properties. Increase in number and size of mitochondria in the fungal cells is accompanied by increase in dehydrogenases activity. Cell permeability influenced by MGHPs grows in connection with concentration of toxicants. Increase of permeability corresponds to growth of the amount of unsaturated fatty acids. The changes in the fatty acid composition of lipids in the cells of the soil micromycetes display their adaptation to adverse impact of the substances studied. MGHPs and thiodiglycol enhance synthesis of polysaccharides and pigments. PMID:17537425

  13. Amendments and mulches improve the biological quality of soils degraded by mining activities in SE Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luna Ramos, Lourdes; Miralles Mellado, Isabel; Hernndez Fernndez, Mara Teresa; Garca Izquierdo, Carlos; Sol Benet, Albert

    2014-05-01

    Mining and quarrying activities generate negative visual impacts in the landscape and a loss of environmental quality. Substrate properties at the end of mining are in general not suitable for plant growth, even native ones. In an experimental soil restoration in limestone quarries from Sierra de Gdor (Almera), SE Spain, the effect of organic amendment (sewage sludge, compost from the organic fraction of domestic waste or non-amendment) combined or not with two different kind of mulches (fine gravel, chopped forest residue) was tested by triplicate in 5 x 5 m plots with the aim to improve soil/substrate properties and to reduce evaporation and erosion. In each experimental plot 75 native plants (Stipa tenacissima, Anthyllis terniflora and Anthyllis cytisoides) were planted. Effects of adding organic amendments and mulches on some soil microbiological and biochemical parameters (microbial biomass carbon, basal respiration and different enzymatic activities, such as dehydrogenase, phosphatase, ?-glucosidase and urease) were analyzed 5 years after the start of the experiment. Vegetation growth was also monitored. The two-way ANOVA, using as factors amendment and mulch, showed a significant positive influence of organic amendments on microbial biomass (Cmic), basal respiration and some enzymatic activities related to the cycles of C and N. The highest values of these parameters were obtained with compost. The influence of the mulch factor and its interactions with the amendment factor on the measured variables did not follow a clear trend with respect the measured parameters. Mulching did not improved significantly (p<0.05) the positive effect of organic amendments on Cmic although Cmic values increased with the incorporation of "forest chopped residue" and decreased with gravel incorporation. In general, both type of mulch decreased or have no effect on the microbial activity detected in the amended soils, with the only exception of the forest chopped residue, which increased phosphatase activity in the compost amended soil. Plant growth was significantly higher in amended soils than in the control, but it is remarkable that the mulch type "forest chopped residue" had a negative effect on vegetation growth. The addition of organic amendments, especially compost from the organic fraction of domestic wastes, is beneficial to restore degraded or man-made soils from quarrying areas because they stimulate microbial growth and activity, resulting in mineralization of nutrients necessary for plants and increasing soil fertility and quality. However, after 5 years the effects of the mulch "forest chopped residue", on the improvement of soil or substrate quality are not clear.

  14. Elevated atmospheric CO2 affected photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium stress.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xia; Liu, Tuo; Zhao, Yonghua; He, Yunhua; Yang, Mingyan

    2016-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of elevated CO2 (700 ± 23 μmol mol(-1)) on photosynthetic products in wheat seedlings and on organic compounds and biological activity in rhizosphere soil under cadmium (Cd) stress. Elevated CO2 was associated with decreased quantities of reducing sugars, starch, and soluble amino acids, and with increased quantities of soluble sugars, total sugars, and soluble proteins in wheat seedlings under Cd stress. The contents of total soluble sugars, total free amino acids, total soluble phenolic acids, and total organic acids in the rhizosphere soil under Cd stress were improved by elevated CO2. Compared to Cd stress alone, the activity of amylase, phenol oxidase, urease, L-asparaginase, β-glucosidase, neutral phosphatase, and fluorescein diacetate increased under elevated CO2 in combination with Cd stress; only cellulase activity decreased. Bacterial abundance in rhizosphere soil was stimulated by elevated CO2 at low Cd concentrations (1.31-5.31 mg Cd kg(-1) dry soil). Actinomycetes, total microbial abundance, and fungi decreased under the combined conditions at 5.31-10.31 mg Cd kg(-1) dry soil. In conclusion, increased production of soluble sugars, total sugars, and proteins in wheat seedlings under elevated CO2 + Cd stress led to greater quantities of organic compounds in the rhizosphere soil relative to seedlings grown under Cd stress only. Elevated CO2 concentrations could moderate the effects of heavy metal pollution on enzyme activity and microorganism abundance in rhizosphere soils, thus improving soil fertility and the microecological rhizosphere environment of wheat under Cd stress. PMID:26315595

  15. The activity and community structure of total bacteria and denitrifying bacteria across soil depths and biological gradients in estuary ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Lee, Seung-Hoon; Kang, Hojeong

    2016-02-01

    The distribution of soil microorganisms often shows variations along soil depth, and even in the same soil layer, each microbial group has a specific niche. In particular, the estuary soil is intermittently flooded, and the characteristics of the surface soil layer are different from those of other terrestrial soils. We investigated the microbial community structure and activity across soil depths and biological gradients composed of invasive and native plants in the shallow surface layer of an estuary ecosystem by using molecular approaches. Our results showed that the total and denitrifying bacterial community structures of the estuarine wetland soil differed according to the short depth gradient. In growing season, gene copy number of 16S rRNA were 1.52(0.23)נ10(11), 1.10(0.06)נ10(11), and 4.33(0.16)נ10(10) g(-1) soil; nirS were 5.41(1.25)נ10(8), 4.93(0.94)נ10(8), and 2.61(0.28)נ10(8) g(-1) soil; and nirK were 9.67(2.37)נ10(6), 3.42(0.55)נ10(6), and 2.12(0.19)נ10(6) g(-1) soil in 0cm, 5cm, and 10cm depth layer, respectively. The depth-based difference was distinct in the vegetated sample and in the growing season, evidencing the important role of plants in structuring the microbial community. In comparison with other studies, we observed differences in the microbial community and functions even across very short depth gradients. In conclusion, our results suggested that (i) in the estuary ecosystem, the denitrifying bacterial community could maintain its abundance and function within shallow surface soil layers through facultative anaerobiosis, while the total bacterial community would be both quantitatively and qualitatively affected by the soil depth, (ii) the nirS gene community, rather than the nirK one, should be the first candidate used as an indicator of the microbial denitrification process in the estuary system, and (iii) as the microbial community is distributed and plays a certain niche role according to biogeochemical factors, the study of the microbial community even in surface soil should be performed in detail by considering the soil depth. PMID:26526456

  16. Soil amendment with Pseudomonas fluorescens CHA0: lasting effects on soil biological properties in soils low in microbial biomass and activity.

    PubMed

    Fliessbach, Andreas; Winkler, Manuel; Lutz, Matthias P; Oberholzer, Hans-Rudolf; Mäder, Paul

    2009-05-01

    Pseudomonas fluorescens strains are used in agriculture as plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR). Nontarget effects of released organisms should be analyzed prior to their large-scale use, and methods should be available to sensitively detect possible changes in the environments the organism is released to. According to ecological theory, microbial communities with a greater diversity should be less susceptible to disturbance by invading organisms. Based on this principle, we laid out a pot experiment with field-derived soils different in their microbial biomass and activity due to long-term management on similar parent geological material (loess). We investigated the survival of P. fluorescens CHA0 that carried a resistance toward rifampicin and the duration of potential changes of the soil microflora caused by the inoculation with the bacterium at the sowing date of spring wheat. Soil microbial biomass (C(mic), N(mic)) basal soil respiration (BR), qCO(2), dehydrogenase activity (DHA), bacterial plate counts, mycorrhiza root colonization, and community level substrate utilization were analyzed after 18 and 60 days. At the initial stage, soils were clearly different with respect to most of the parameters measured, and a time-dependent effect between the first and the second set point were attributable to wheat growth and the influence of roots. The effect of the inoculum was small and merely transient, though significant long-term changes were found in soils with a relatively low level of microbial biomass. Community level substrate utilization as an indicator of changes in microbial community structure was mainly changed by the growth of wheat, while other experimental factors were negligible. The sensitivity of the applied methods to distinguish the experimental soils was in decreasing order N(mic), DHA, C(mic), and qCO(2). Besides the selective enumeration of P. fluorescens CHA0 rif(+), which was only found in amended soils, methods to distinguish the inoculum effect were DHA, C(mic), and the ratio of C(mic) to N(mic). The sampling time was most sensitively indicated by N(mic), DHA, C(mic), and qCO(2). Our data support the hypothesis-based on ecosystem theory-that a rich microflora is buffering changes due to invading species. In other words, a soil-derived bacterium was more effective in a relatively poor soil than in soils that are rich in microorganisms. PMID:19224270

  17. Engelmann Spruce (Picea engelmannii) as a biological monitor of changes in soil metal loading related to past mining activity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Witte, K.M.; Wanty, R.B.; Ridley, W.I.

    2004-01-01

    Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii) is the dominant tree species in many abandoned mine areas of the Rocky Mountains. It is long-lived, and therefore, may act as a long term biological monitor of changes in soil chemistry caused by past mining activity. In this study, laser ablation inductively coupled mass spectrometry (LA-ICPMS) was used to analyze individual tree rings of Engelmann spruce for Fe, Zn, Cu, Cd, Mn, Pb and Sr concentrations. Cores were obtained from trees growing in tailings-impacted and control (non-tailings impacted) sites near the Waldorf mine (Waldorf, CO, USA). Zinc, Cu, Fe, Cd, Pb and Sr concentrations remained low and consistent over time in the control tree rings. However, in the tailings impacted cores, concentrations of Zn, Cu, Fe and Cd increase significantly in post-mining rings. In addition, Zn, Cu, Fe, and Cd concentrations in pre-mining rings of both the control and tailings impacted cores are similar, indicating that present day soil concentrations of these elements in the control area are a reasonable estimation of background for this area. Lead and Sr concentrations in control and tailings-impacted rings remained similar and relatively constant through time and are not useful in determining changes in soil chemistry due to past mining activity. ?? 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. FATE OF PAH COMPOUNDS IN TWO SOIL TYPES: INFLUENCE OF VOLATILIZATION, ABIOTIC LOSS, AND BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The fate of 14 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) compounds was evaluated with regard to interphase transfer potential and mechanisms of treatment in soil under unsaturated conditions. Volatilization and abiotic and biotic fate of the PAHs were determined using two soils not p...

  19. FATE OF PAH COMPOUNDS IN TWO SOIL TYPES: INFLUENCE OF VOLATILIZATION, ABIOTIC LOSS AND BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The fate of 14 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) compounds was evaluated with regard to interphase transfer potential and mechanisms of treatment in soil under unsaturated conditions. olatilization and abiotic and biotic fate of the PAHs were determined using two soils not pr...

  20. A comparison of soil climate and biological activity along an elevation gradient in the eastern Mojave Desert

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Amundson, R.G.; Chadwick, O.A.; Sowers, J.M.

    1989-01-01

    Soil temperature, moisture, and CO2 were monitored at four sites along an elevation transect in the eastern Mojave Desert from January to October, 1987. Climate appeared to be the major factor controlling CO2 partial pressures, primarily through its influence of rates of biological reactions, vegetation densities, and organic matter production. With increasing elevation, and increasing actual evapotranspiration, the organic C, plant density, and the CO2 content of the soils increased. Between January and May, soil CO2 concentrations at a given site were closely related to variations in soil temperature. In July and October, temperatures had little effect on CO2, presumably due to low soil moisture levels. Up to 75% of litter placed in the field in March was lost by October whereas, for the 3 lower elevations, less than 10% of the litter placed in the field in April was lost through decomposition processes. ?? 1989 Springer-Verlag.

  1. Biological activity of soddy-calcareous soils and cultural layers in Alanian settlements of the Kislovodsk basin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chernysheva, E. V.; Kashirskaya, N. N.; Korobov, D. S.; Borisov, A. V.

    2014-09-01

    Microbiological investigations of cultural layers were performed in a settlement of the Alanian culturePodkumskoe-2 (the 2nd-4th centuries AD). The present-day soddy-calcareous soils (rendzinas) used for different purposes were also studied near this settlement. The most significant changes in the initial characteristics of the soil microbial communities occurred under the residential influence more than 1500 years ago; these changes have been preserved until the present time. In the areas subjected to the anthropogenic impact, the total microbial biomass (the weighted average of 3720 ?g C/g soil) was lower than that in the background soil. The minimal values of the microbial biomass were found in the soil of the pasture2.5 times less than in the background soil. The urease activity of the cultural layer was higher than that of the soils nearby the settlement. Elevated values of the cellulose activity were also recorded only in the cultural layers. The current plowing has led to a significant decrease in the mycelium biomass of the microscopic fungi. In the soil of the fallow, the weighted average value of the fungal hyphae biomass along the profile was twice lower than that in the background soil and cultural layers of the settlement. The pasture first affected the active microbial biomass and, to a lesser extent, the amount of microscopic fungi.

  2. Long-term impact of land management in soil biological processes can be assessed by fingerprint of dissolved organic carbon and peroxidase activity in topsoil and subsoil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hernandez-Soriano, Maria C.; Maclean, Jamie L.; Dalal, Ram C.; Menzies, Neal W.; Kopittke, Peter M.

    2015-04-01

    The dissolved organic carbon (DOC) is a highly dynamic pool, directly related to biological functions and to the stabilization of organic carbon (OC) through interaction with the mineral phase. Therefore, the characterization of the main components of DOC can be linked to the metabolic status of soil and the turnover of OC and provides a sensitive approach to evaluate the impact of land use on OC turnover in soils. Accordingly, the objective of this study was to derive relationships between DOC characteristics and biochemical activity in soils under contrasting land management. The soil solution was isolated from topsoil and subsoil for three soils (Vertisol, Ferralsol, Acrisol, World Reference Base 2014) collected from undisturbed areas and from a location(s) immediately adjacent which has a long history of agricultural, pasture or afforestation use (>20 years) by centrifugation at 4000 rpm (20 min, 25 °C. The fingerprint of DOC was obtained to identify OC functionalities by spectrofluorometric analyses and Excitation-Emission matrices (EEM) were obtained for all samples. The excitation wavelengths were increased from 250 to 400 nm in 5-nm steps for each excitation wavelength, and emission was detected from 250 to 500 nm in 0.5-nm steps and. Humification index (HIX), freshness index (FrI), fluorescence index (FI) and redox index (RI) were derived from the EEMs. Extracellular laccase activity was examined by monitoring the oxidation of 2,2'-azinobis-3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulfonic acid (ABTS) at 420 nm. The EEMs revealed a depletion of the humic-like component (250soils under pasture or cropping compared to adjacent soils under native vegetation. For soil under pasture, the subsoil appeared enriched in the humic-like component compared to the subsoil under native vegetation. A component assigned to aromatic proteins was identified in the subsoil of the cropping area. The HIX consistently decreased for cropping areas compared to soil under native vegetation across the different soils. However, HIX decreased for the Ferralsol under pasture compared to areas under native vegetation, but increased for the Acrisol under pasture. Generally, HIX is substantially related to land use, with the highest HIX values determined for soils under native vegetation. Laccase activity was generally higher for topsoils collected from undisturbed areas for the three soils examined and a significant decrease in the enzyme activity was determined for soils collected from the corresponding adjacent crop land. The rate of ABTS oxidation varied for the different soils following the order Vertisol>Acrisol>Ferralsol and was always higher for the topsoils compared to the corresponding subsoils. Overall, results indicate that land management has a strong impact on soil biological activity. Importantly, such impact is directly linked to changes in the composition of soil OC, particularly the transformation of OC inputs into oxidized products that can contribute to OC build up in soil. For the first time, we have utilized DOC fingerprinting and extracellular laccase activity as complementary techniques to examine changes in OC speciation in soil solutions. This approach provides a suitable link between variations in biological functions and OC dynamics.

  3. Screening and biological activities of pedopeptins, novel inhibitors of LPS produced by soil bacteria.

    PubMed

    Kozuma, Shiho; Hirota-Takahata, Yuki; Fukuda, Daisuke; Kuraya, Nahoki; Nakajima, Mutsuo; Ando, Osamu

    2014-03-01

    Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) is a strong endotoxin and is delivered to the cell surface signaling receptor, Toll-like receptor 4 and MD-2 complex, via soluble cluster of differentiation (CD) 14 or membranous CD14, resulting in the induction of the inflammatory response. To obtain new compounds that block LPS binding to CD14, we designed a high-throughput screening based on time-resolved intermolecular fluorescence resonance energy transfer. This cell-free screening system successfully led to the discovery of novel inhibitors of LPS-CD14 interaction from the library of the secondary metabolites of microorganisms. We identified the novel compounds pedopeptin A, B and C from a culture broth of Pedobacter sp. SANK 72003. Pedopeptins blocked LPS binding to CD14 in vitro with IC50 values of 20, 11 and 47?nM, respectively, and also inhibited LPS binding to the cells expressing CD14, leading to the suppression of cytokine production. Moreover, they showed antimicrobial activities against Escherichia coli with minimum inhibitory concentration ranging from 2 to 4??g ml(-1). PMID:24281661

  4. Biological Control on Mineral Transformation in Soils ?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ziegler, K.; Hsieh, J. C.; Chadwick, O. A.; Kelly, E. F.

    2001-12-01

    Weathering of primary minerals is commonly linked to biological processes through the production of carbonic and organic acids. Plants can also play a role in weathering by removing soluble constituents and enhancing diffusion gradients within the soil. Here we investigate the synthesis of secondary minerals and the role of plants in removing elements that act as building blocks for these minerals. In order to minimize losses from leaching, we have sampled a chronosequence of soils forming on lava flows on Hawaii Island that receive about 200 mm of rain annually and have never been subjected to high levels of rainfall. The P concentration in the soils drops from almost 3000 mg/kg on a 1.5 ky lava flow to around 1000 mg/kg on a 350 ky lava flow. This loss of P can only be ascribed to P-uptake by plants with subsequent removal through the loss of above ground biomass through fire and/or wind removal. Over the same time frame the amount of plagioclase in the soils drops from around 22% of the <2 mm soil fraction on the youngest lava flow to virtually 0% on the 350 ky flow, suggesting a substantial release of Si. Elevated silicon in arid, basaltic soil environments often leads to formation of smectite, a feature not observed along the chronosequence. In fact, plagioclase is replaced by the kaolin mineral halloysite with allophane as an apparent precursor. Kaolin minerals are associated with moderate to intense leaching environments rather than the mild leaching conditions that influence these soils. We selected an intermediate age soil profile (170 ky lava flow) to conduct an in-depth investigation of the soil mineral composition. We detected a strong dominance of halloysite, the presence of gibbsite, but no smectite. Secondary halloysite formation is preferred over smectite formation when Si activities are relatively low, and the pH is acidic rather than alkaline. Although this mineral assemblage seems to imply formation under a wetter climatic regime, the oxygen isotopic composition of the halloysite suggests formation under soil environmental conditions similar to the present. The Si concentration in grass and tree leaves in the vicinity of the soil contain between 3 and 8% Si. Loss of these leaves to the nearby ocean (either as dried or burned residue) could be responsible for considerable Si removal in a manner similar to the P-removal. The resulting Si-deficient soil-water favors the formation of halloysite over smectite as is demonstrated by construction of mineral stability diagrams using the soil-water data from the soils along the chronosequence.

  5. Changes in the biological activity of chestnut soils upon the long-term application of fertilizers in a rotation with oil-bearing crops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eleshev, R. E.; Bakenova, Z. B.

    2012-11-01

    Experimental studies showed that irrigated chestnut soils on the piedmont of the Zailiiskiy Alatau Range are characterized by the moderate activity of the hydrolytic and redox enzymes. The use of these soils in the crop rotation system increases the hydrolytic activity of the enzymes (invertase, urease, and ATP synthase) by 30% in comparison with the monoculture; at the same time, it does not have a significant impact on the changes in the biological activity of the redox enzymes (catalase and dehydrogenase). The hydrolytic activity of the soils is activated to a greater extent in the crop rotation and in the monoculture against the background application of organic fertilizers. In this case, the recommended rates of mineral fertilizers do not inhibit the activity of the hydrolytic and redox enzymes. An increase in the hydrolytic activity of the enzymes directly affects the yield of oilseed flax. Therefore, indices of the hydrolytic activity of soils can be used as a test for the diagnostics of the efficiency of fertilizers both in crop rotation and monoculture systems.

  6. Behavior of oxyfluorfen in soils amended with different sources of organic matter. Effects on soil biology.

    PubMed

    Gómez, Isidoro; Rodríguez-Morgado, Bruno; Parrado, Juan; García, Carlos; Hernández, Teresa; Tejada, Manuel

    2014-05-30

    We performed a laboratory study on the effect of oxyfluorfen at a rate of 4lha(-1) on biological properties of a soil amended with four organic wastes (two biostimulants/biofertilizers, obtained from rice bran, RB1 and RB2; municipal solid waste, MSW; and sheep manure, SM). Soil was mixed with SM at a rate of 1%, MSW at a rate of 0.52%, RB1 at a rate of 0.39% and RB2 at a rate of 0.30%, in order to apply the same amount of organic matter to the soil. The enzymatic activities and microbial community in the soil were determined during the incubation times. The application of RB1 and RB2 to soil without oxyfluorfen increased the enzymatic activities and biodiversity, peaking at day 10 of the incubation period. This stimulation was higher in the soil amended with RB2 than in that amended with RB1. In SM and CF-amended soils, the stimulation of enzymatic activities and soil biodiversity increased during the experiment. The application of herbicide in organic-amended soils decreased the inhibition of soil enzymatic activities and soil biodiversity. Possibly the low molecular weight protein content easily assimilated by soil microorganisms and the higher fat content in the biostimulants/biofertilizers are responsible for the lower inhibition of these soil biological properties. PMID:24742665

  7. Viking Biology Experiments and the Martian soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banin, Amos

    1989-01-01

    The Viking Biology Experiments (VBE) are the most informative database on the wet chemistry and reactivity of the Martian soil available today. The simulation and chemical interpretation of the results have given valuable hints towards the characterization of the soils' mineralogy, adsorption properties, pH and redox. The characterization of Mars' soil on the basis of ten years of labelled release (LR) and other VBE simulations are reviewed.

  8. Color characterization of Arctic Biological Soil Crusts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mele, Giacono; Gargiulo, Laura; Ventura, Stefano

    2015-04-01

    Global climate change makes large areas lacking the vegetation coverage continuously available to primary colonization by biological soil crusts (BSCs). This happens in many different environments, included high mountains and Polar Regions where new areas can become available due to glaciers retreat. Presence of BSCs leads to the stabilization of the substrate and to a possible development of protosoil, with an increase of fertility and resilience against erosion. Polar BSCs can exhibit many different proportions of cyanobacteria, algae, microfungi, lichens, and bryophytes which induce a large variability of the crust morphology and specific ecosystem functions. An effective and easy way for identifying the BSCs in the field would be very useful to rapidly recognize their development stage and help in understanding the overall impact of climate change in the delicate polar environments. Color analysis has long been applied as an easily measurable physical attribute of soil closely correlated with pedogenic processes and some soil functions. In this preliminary work we used RGB and CIE-L*a*b* color models in order to physically characterize fourteen different BSCs identified in Spitsbergen island of Svalbard archipelago in Arctic Ocean at 79° north latitude. We found that the "redness parameter "a*" of CIE-L*a*b* model was well correlated to the succession process of some BSCs at given geomorphology condition. Most of color parameters showed, moreover, a great potential to be correlated to photosynthetic activity and other ecosystem functions of BSCs.

  9. Isolation of Secondary Metabolites from the Soil-Derived Fungus Clonostachys rosea YRS-06, a Biological Control Agent, and Evaluation of Antibacterial Activity.

    PubMed

    Zhai, Ming-Ming; Qi, Feng-Ming; Li, Jie; Jiang, Chun-Xiao; Hou, Yue; Shi, Yan-Ping; Di, Duo-Long; Zhang, Ji-Wen; Wu, Quan-Xiang

    2016-03-23

    The fungus Clonostachys rosea is widely distributed all over the world. The destructive force of this fungus, as a biological control agent, is very strong to lots of plant pathogenic fungi. As part of the ongoing search for antibiotics from fungi obtained from soil samples, the secondary metabolites of C. rosea YRS-06 were investigated. Through efficient bioassay-guided isolation, three new bisorbicillinoids possessing open-ended cage structures, tetrahydrotrichodimer ether (1) and dihydrotrichodimer ether A and B (2 and 3), and 12 known compounds were obtained. Their structures were determined via extensive NMR, HR-ESI-MS, and CD spectroscopic analyses and X-ray diffraction data. Compounds 1-3 are rare bisorbicillinoids with a γ-pyrone moiety. The biological properties of 1-15 were evaluated against six different Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Bisorbicillinoids, 2-5, and TMC-151 C and E, 14 and 15, showed potent antibacterial activity. PMID:26974009

  10. Development of biological soil disinfestations in Japan.

    PubMed

    Momma, Noriaki; Kobara, Yuso; Uematsu, Seiji; Kita, Nobuhiro; Shinmura, Akinori

    2013-05-01

    Biological soil disinfestations (BSDs) were developed separately in Japan and in The Netherlands as an alternative to chemical fumigations. In Japan, it was developed based on the knowledge of irrigated paddy rice and upland crop rotation system that was rather tolerant of soil-borne disease development. The methods consist of application of easily decomposable organic matter, irrigation, and covering the soil surface with plastic film, thereby inducing anaerobic (reductive) soil conditions and suppressing many soil-borne pests including fungi, bacteria, nematodes, and weeds. The methods are widely used by organic farmers in the area where residences and agricultural fields are intermingled. To note one advantage of these methods, maintenance of soil suppressiveness to Fusarium wilt of tomato was suggested, while soil treated with chloropicrin became conducive to the disease. Suppression of soil-borne fungal pathogens by BSDs might be attributed to anaerobicity and high temperature, organic acids generated, and metal ions released into soil water. Contributions of respective factors to suppression of respective pathogens might be diverse. Presumably, these factors might vary on the fungal community structure in BSD-treated soil. These factors also work in paddy fields. Therefore, the BSDs developed in Japan are probably a method to raise the efficacy of paddy-upland rotation through intensive organic matter application and through maintenance of a strongly anaerobic (reductive) soil condition. PMID:23549745

  11. Impact of temperature on the biological properties of soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borowik, Agata; Wyszkowska, Jadwiga

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the study was to determine the response of soil microorganisms and enzymes to the temperature of soil. The effect of the temperatures: 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25°C on the biological properties of soil was investigated under laboratory conditions. The study was performed using four different soils differing in their granulometric composition. It was found that 15°C was the optimal temperature for the development of microorganisms in soil. Typically, in the soil, the highest activity of dehydrogenases was observed at 10-15°C, catalase and acid phosphatase - at 15°C, alkaline phosphatase at 20°C, urease and β-glucosidase at 25°C. The highest colony development index for heterotrophic bacteria was recorded in soils incubated at 25°C, while for actinomycetes and fungi at 15°C. The incubation temperature of soil only slightly changed the ecophysiological variety of the investigated groups of microorganisms. Therefore, the observed climate changes might have a limited impact on the soil microbiological activity, because of the high ability of microorganisms to adopt. The response of soil microorganisms and enzymes was more dependent on the soil granulometric composition, organic carbon, and total nitrogen than on its temperature.

  12. PARTICULATE AND BIOLOGICALLY ACTIVE SOIL CARBON POOLS UNDER GRAZED AND UNGRAZED BERMUDAGRASS IN THE SOUTHERN PIEDMONT USA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effect of forage management strategies on carbon cycling is of importance to the understanding of greenhouse gas emissions, agronomic productivity, and changes in soil quality. Particulate organic C (POC), soil microbial biomass C (SMBC), and potential C mineralization (CMIN) were evaluated duri...

  13. The role of biological soil crusts on soil moisture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamizo, S.; Cantn, Y.; Lzaro, R.; Rodriguez-Caballero, E.; Domingo, F.

    2012-04-01

    In water-limited ecosystems, water becomes the most important driver for plant productivity. In these systems, spatial distribution of water resources is not random but organized into a mosaic of water-depletion areas linked to water-accumulation areas. In other words, water is transferred from interplant patches that act as source areas to vegetation patches that act as sinks of this resource. Thus, structure and functioning of interplant patches have a decisive role in water redistribution and distribution patterns of vegetation. Soil surface in the interplant spaces of most arid and semiarid ecosystems is covered by biological soil crusts (BSCs). These organisms regulate water fluxes into and through soils and play major roles in local hydrological processes. In the last years, the role of these organisms in infiltration and runoff has gained increased importance and a better knowledge about their effects on these processes has been acquired. However, the role of BSCs in other important components of the water balance such as evaporation or soil moisture has been scarcely studied, so that their effects on these processes remain unknown. The objective of this work is to examine the influence of BSCs on soil moisture regimes in the top profile of the soil in two semiarid ecosystems of SE Spain with contrasting soil texture and where BSCs are well-represented. Soil moisture content at 0.03 and 0.10 m was monitored under two representative types of BSCs, a dark cyanobacteria-dominated BSC and a light-coloured lichen-dominated BSC, and in soils where these BSCs were removed by scraping, at both study sites. Our results show that, under high water conditions, removal of BSCs leads to a decrease in soil moisture compared to soils covered by BSCs. Decrease in soil moisture due to BSC removal namely affects moisture in the upper layer of the soil (0.03 m), but has little impact in deeper soil (0.10 m). Evaporation is also generally faster in soils with no BSCs than in soils covered by them. The type of BSC influences soil moisture in a different way depending on soil water conditions. Under high water content conditions, soil water loss is faster and soil moisture content lower under cyanobacterial than under lichen BSCs, due to higher infiltration promoted by lichens. On the contrary, under low water content conditions, lichen-crusted soils dry out faster and exhibit less moisture than cyanobacteria-crusted ones, attributed to the larger porosity and subsequent greater evaporative losses in lichen- than in cyanobacteria-crusted soils. We found higher moisture in coarse-textured soils than in fine-textured ones, despite the higher water retention capacity of the latter soils. More favourable conditions in the coarser soils, which had greater organic matter content, aggregate stability and were subject to less water stress due to its proximity to the coast, seems to contribute to this increased soil moisture content. BSCs therefore play an important role on the maintenance of water availability in the interplant spaces, thereby strongly affecting soil physical and biological processes, and the potential for emergence establishment and survival of plants in semiarid ecosystems.

  14. Application of two organic amendments on soil restoration: effects on the soil biological properties.

    PubMed

    Tejada, M; Hernandez, M T; Garcia, C

    2006-01-01

    One method for recovering degraded soils in semiarid regions is to add organic matter to improve soil characteristics, thereby enhancing biogeochemical nutrient cycling. In this paper, we studied the changes in soil biological properties as a result of adding a crushed cotton gin compost (CCGC) and a poultry manure (PM) for 4 yr to restore a Xerollic Calciorthid located near Seville (Guadalquivir Valley, Andalusia, Spain). Organic wastes were applied at rates of 5, 7.5, and 10 Mg organic matter ha(-1). One year after the assay began, spontaneous vegetation had appeared in the treated plots, particularly in that receiving a high PM and CCGC dose. After 4 yr, the plant cover in these treated plots was around 88 and 79%, respectively, compared with 5% for the control. The effects on soil microbial biomass and six soil enzymatic activities (dehydrogenase, urease, BBA-protease, beta-glucosidase, arylsulfatase, and alkaline phosphatase activities) were ascertained. Both added organic wastes had a positive effect on the biological properties of the soil, although at the end of the experimental period and at high dosage, soil microbial biomass and soil enzyme activities were generally higher in the PM-amended soils compared to the CCGC-amended soils. Enzyme activity from the PM-amended soil was 5, 15, 13, 19, 22, 30, and 6% greater than CCGC-amended soil for soil microbial biomass, urease, BBA-protease, beta-glucosidase, alkaline phosphatase, arylsulfatase, and dehydrogenase activities, respectively. After 4 yr, the percentage of plant cover was > 48% in all treated plots and 5% in the control. PMID:16738385

  15. Quantitative molecular biology and gas flux measurements demonstrate soil treatment and depth affects on the distribution and activity of denitrifiers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, M. M.; Jahangir, M.; Cardenas, L.; Khalil, M.; Richards, K. R.; O'Flaherty, V.

    2010-12-01

    The growing industrialisation of agriculture has led to a dramatic increase in organic and inorganic nitrogen (N) fertiliser inputs to agro-ecosystems. This increase has had negative effects on the quality of water ecosystems and greenhouse gas emissions.The study objective was to quantify denitrification and denitrifying microorganisms, using real-time PCR assays of the nitrite reductase(nir) and nitrous oxide reductase(nos) functional gene copy concentrations (GCC g[soil]-1) in Irish agricultural surface and subsoils. Soil cores from 3 soil horizons (A:0-10 cm; B:45-55 cm; C:120-130cm) were amended with 3 alternate N- and C-source amendments (NO3-; NO3-+glucose-C; NO3-+Dissolved Organic Carbon (DOC). Real-time production of N2O and N2 was recorded by gas chromatography in a specialized He/O2 environment. N2O and Total Denitrification (TDN) (N2O+N2) production was generally greater in surface soil (2.052 mg/kg/d TDN) than in subsoils (0.120 mg/kg/d TDN). The abundance of denitrifying nirS, nirK (nir) and nos genes was higher in the surface soil, decreasing with soil depth, except in incubations amended with NO3- and DOC, where the carbon source directly positively affected gene copy numbers and fluxes of N2O and N2 production. C addition increased soil denitrification rates, and resulted in higher N2O/(N2O+N2) ratios in surface soil (0.39) than subsoils (0.005), indicating that the subsoil had higher potential for complete reduction of N2O to N2. In the subsoils, complete reduction of NO3- due to glucose-C and DOC addition was observed. Interestingly, at all 3 soil depths, lower nirK abundance (2.78 105 GCC) was recorded, compared to nirS (1.45 107 GCC), but the overall abundance of nir (S+K) i.e. (1.54 107GCC), corresponded with N2O emission fluxes (3.34 mg/kg/d) Statistical analysis indicates negative correlation between nirK GCC and N2O production, but a strong positive correlation was observed between nirS GCC and N2O. We therefore hypothesize that the potential for complete nitrate reduction can be inferred using the relationship - ([nirS + nirK] - nosZ): (nosZ). Specifically, at 45-55 cm depth ([nirS + nirK] - nosZ): (nosZ) ratios were lower (2.13) compared to 120-130cm (94.4), overall the ([nirS + nirK] - nosZ): (nosZ) ratios for horizons A, B and C, was 27.9, 40.3, 69.4, respectively, thus decreasing potential for full microbial denitrification with decreasing depth. Mean Bac:nir and Bac:nosZ gene copy ratios g[soil]-1 increased from horizon A(Bac:nir - 3.91) (Bac:nosZ - 111.24) to horizon B (Bac:nir - 8.89) (Bac:nosZ -295.0 ), and decreased again in horizon C (Bac:nir - 0.723) (Bac:nosZ - 46.2) . Overall, denitrification in subsoils occurs at a lower rate than surface soils, but the microbial populations favored more complete reduction thus reducing emissions of NO3- to water and N2O to the atmosphere. The gene copy ratio suggests that the soil microbial community containing nirs and nosZ genes act as the driving force, and in the partitioning of N2O and N2 emissions from soil.

  16. BIOCRUST: biological soil crusts vulnerability and soil surface disturbance in Sahelian zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malam Issa, O.

    2009-04-01

    Land degradation and desertification are among the major environmental problems, resulting in reduced productivity and development of bare surfaces in arid and semi-arid areas of the world. One important factor that acts to increase soil stability and nutrient content, and thus to prevent water and wind erosion and enhance soil productivity of arid environment, is the presence of biological soil crusts (BSCs). They are the dominant ground cover and a key component of arid environments built up mainly by cyanobacteria. They enhance degraded soil quality by providing a stable and water-retaining substratum and increasing fertility by N and C fixations. Appearance of BSC at the soil surface is the first sign of soil degradation; their development helps prevent soil degradation and their loss mean crossing soil degradation threshold. Soil surface disturbance due to intensification of human activities and global changes are expected to have important consequences on the development and ecological processes mediated by biological soil crusts in arid environments. The purpose of this talk is to present the BIOCRUST project which objective is to improve understanding of the temporal and spatial dynamics of BSCs in Sahelian ecosystems and to provide tools for management in assessing soil degradation due to futures changes in land uses and climate.

  17. Soil stabilization by biological soil crusts in arid Tunisia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guidez, Sabine; Couté, Alain; Bardat, Jacques

    2015-04-01

    As part of the fight against desertification (LCD) in arid Tunisia, we have been able to highlight the important role played by biological soil crusts (BSC) in soil stabilization. The identification of the major species of cyanobacteria, lichens and bryophytes, their adaptation and terrestrial colonization strategies in this high climatic constraints area through their morpho-anatomical criteria have been set. In addition to their biological composition, their internal arrangement (i.e. texture and microstructure) reflects the structural stability of BSC against erosion. Precisely, the aggregative power of cyanobacteria and their ways of moving inside a soil, the capacity of mosses to grow through the sediments and lichens ability to bind at particles on surface, thus stabilizing the substrate have been demonstrated. Then, the three biological components ability to capture soil particles has been widely illustrated, proving the major environmental contribution of BSC in arid areas biological crusts formation, providing that soils will experience an increase of organic matter and fine particles rates subsequently gaining faster and better stability. Although the thickness and the morphology of crusts are related to the cover rates of these different biological components, the water properties of the latter, studied at the environmental SEM, illustrate their important role in altering the water cycle. Thus, the mixed crusts, i.e. with good presence of three biological components, cause the highest runoff rates by their ability to retain the water and spread on the surface. In spite of a swelling coefficient in presence of water higher than cryptogams, the cyanobacterial crusts located in newly stabilized areas of our studied region, remain finally insufficiently dense to impact surface hydrology. But, we showed after all that the cyanobacteria, pioneer species, have a certain environmental role. The lichen crusts cause a increased runoff because the lichens have a ability to extend them horizontally on the soil surface. Despite the water capture for their metabolism, the water flows; it isn't released in the depth. The moss crusts show an opposite process with an increased infiltration thanks to the possibility of a vertical transit of water through their sheets, stem and roots. So, in relation to bare soils, a crust with a good microbial and cryptogamic development causes more runoff. As part of the fight against the desertification in arid Tunisia, hydrological impact of BSC may lead to elaborate some ecosystem strategies in water and soils management. Indeed, climate aridity is not synonymous with edaphic aridity.

  18. Active Biological Materials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fletcher, Daniel A.; Geissler, Phillip L.

    2009-05-01

    Cells make use of dynamic internal structures to control shape and create movement. By consuming energy to assemble into highly organized systems of interacting parts, these structures can generate force and resist compression, as well as adaptively change in response to their environment. Recent progress in reconstituting cytoskeletal structures in vitro has provided an opportunity to characterize the mechanics and dynamics of filament networks formed from purified proteins. Results indicate that a complex interplay between length scales and timescales underlies the mechanical responses of these systems and that energy consumption, as manifested in molecular motor activity and cytoskeletal filament growth, can drive transitions between distinct material states. This review discusses the basic characteristics of these active biological materials that set them apart from conventional materials and that create a rich array of unique behaviors.

  19. Active Biological Materials

    PubMed Central

    Fletcher, Daniel A.; Geissler, Phillip L.

    2011-01-01

    Cells make use of dynamic internal structures to control shape and create movement. By consuming energy to assemble into highly organized systems of interacting parts, these structures can generate force and resist compression, as well as adaptively change in response to their environment. Recent progress in reconstituting cytoskeletal structures in vitro has provided an opportunity to characterize the mechanics and dynamics of filament networks formed from purified proteins. Results indicate that a complex interplay between length scales and timescales underlies the mechanical responses of these systems and that energy consumption, as manifested in molecular motor activity and cytoskeletal filament growth, can drive transitions between distinct material states. This review discusses the basic characteristics of these active biological materials that set them apart from conventional materials and that create a rich array of unique behaviors. PMID:18999991

  20. Comparison of neem or oregano with thiram on organic matter decomposition of a sand loam soil amended with compost, and on soil biological activity.

    TOXLINE Toxicology Bibliographic Information

    Gougoulias N; Vagelas I; Vasilakoglou I; Gravanis F; Louka A; Wogiatzi E; Chouliaras N

    2010-01-30

    BACKGROUND: Oregano essential oil and neem have been reported to be effective against soil-borne pathogens and nematodes. The possibility of having an effect on soil properties was the aim of this investigation. Moreover, thiram, a common widely used chemical pesticide, was used for comparison.RESULTS: The effects of all three above-mentioned substances were investigated during an incubation experiment, for 15 weeks. Crushed neem pellets were added at 1.0, 2.0 or 3.0 g per 50 g of soil. Oregano dry matter was applied at 0.2, 0.4 or 0.6 g per 50 g of soil. Finally, thiram was applied at 0.1, 0.2 and 0.3 g per 50 g of soil. The addition of neem resulted in a decrease in organic carbon mineralisation, higher than that of oregano, but not as prominently as thiram. The addition of neem resulted in an increase in the content of nitrate, organic P, bioavailable P, bioavailable K and bioavailable Mn. Oregano had a slight negative effect on organic matter biodegradation, but caused an increase of nutritional mineral elements. Microbe colonies in soil were increased by the addition of neem cake granules, whereas oregano and thiram treatments caused a decrease. The addition of thiram reduced nitrate and available Mn contents, but at the lowest dose increased organic P and available K. Thiram reduced prominently available Cu at the upper rates, but it increased these forms at the lowest rate, while available Zn content was increased in two lowest rates.CONCLUSION: The results of this study indicated that neem or oregano could be applied to the soil without any extremely negative effect on the available forms of nutritional mineral elements, as thiram does.

  1. Advances in Soil Biology: What does this mean for assessing soil change?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Black, Helaina; Mele, Pauline

    2015-07-01

    Our interests in soil change are moving away from soil properties and increasingly towards changes in the processes and functioning of soils. Soil organisms are fundamental to dynamics and change in soils through their fundamental role in soil processes [1]. However it is only with recent technical and theoretical advances that we have started to establish quantitative relationships between soil biology and soil change (c.f. [2]). It is this predictive understanding that will enable us to fully integrate soil biology into the effective monitoring and sustainable management of soils. This paper outlines some of the recent advances in soil biology and discusses their relevance to monitoring and management.

  2. Orchard floor management effects on nitrogen fertility and soil biological activity in a newly established organic apple orchard

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nutrient supply in organic systems is dependent on mineralization of organic matter; however, the intensive cultivation commonly used to control weeds can disrupt biological processes and cause undue loss of organic matter. Here we address the often-competing goals of organic fertility and weed con...

  3. Biological cleaning of soil and reservoirs from oil products

    SciTech Connect

    Zinberg, M.B.; Ivanovskaya, I.B.; Gafarov, N.A.

    1996-12-31

    The production of oil and gas condensate invariably involves environmental hazards: water and soil contamination due to miscellaneous breakdowns of technological equipment and pipeline damage. Among many existing contamination methods biological cleaning has become more popular lately. It took us some years to make investigations and to carry out a number of field tests in order to develop biological methods of cleaning soil and reservoirs from oil and gas condensate products. Our method is based on the use of special biological agents containing various active hydrocarbon oxidizing bacteria. It has been experimentally proved that biological agents of {open_quotes}Devouroil{close_quotes} possess the greatest oxidizing properties. {open_quotes}Devouroil{close_quotes} contains five kinds of hydrocarbon oxidizing bacteria of Pseudomonas, Rodococcus, Candida genera. These bacteria are extracted from natural ecosystems: underground waters, soils, reservoirs. As the agents are grown on oil distillate, they are very destructive to different oil products. We also proved the described microorganisms ability to oxidize sulfate oil and hydrocarbon condensate, which are the most toxic components. For four years our colleagues have been cleaning soil and reservoirs contaminated with oil, black oil, gas condensate and other products of hydrocarbon origin. This method was used to treat different kinds of soil and ground (grass and arable land, swamp and forest) in actual hazardous situations involving oil and gas condensate spills. Besides it was successfully applied to clean sludge storage which had been filled with oil process sewage for several years.

  4. Soil management of copper mine tailing soils--sludge amendment and tree vegetation could improve biological soil quality.

    PubMed

    Asensio, Vernica; Covelo, Emma F; Kandeler, Ellen

    2013-07-01

    Mine soils at the depleted copper mine in Touro (Northwest Spain) are physico-chemically degraded and polluted by chromium and copper. To increase the quality of these soils, some areas at this mine have been vegetated with eucalyptus or pines, amended with sludges, or received both treatments. Four sites were selected at the Touro mine tailing in order to evaluate the effect of these different reclamation treatments on the biological soil quality: (1) Control (untreated), (2) Forest (vegetated), (3) Sludge (amended with sludges) and (4) Forest+Sludge (vegetated and amended). The new approach of the present work is that we evaluated the effect of planting trees or/and amending with sludges on the biological soil quality of mine sites polluted by metals under field conditions. The addition of sludges to mine sites recovered the biological quality of the soil, while vegetating with trees did not increase microbial biomass and function to the level of unpolluted sites. Moreover, amending with sludges increased the efficiency of the soil's microbial community to metabolize C and N, which was indicated by the decrease of the specific enzyme activities and the increase in the ratio Cmic:Nmic (shift towards predominance of fungi instead of bacteria). However, the high Cu and Cr concentrations still have negative influence on the microorganisms in all the treated soils. For the future remediation of mine soils, we recommend periodically adding sludge and planting native legume species. PMID:23584036

  5. Reconstruction of food webs in biological soil crusts using metabolomics.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baran, Richard; Brodie, Eoin L.; Mayberry-Lewis, Jazmine; Nunes Da Rocha, Ulisses; Bowen, Benjamin P.; Karaoz, Ulas; Cadillo-Quiroz, Hinsby; Garcia-Pichel, Ferran; Northen, Trent R.

    2015-04-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are communities of organisms inhabiting the upper layer of soil in arid environments. BSCs persist in a dessicated dormant state for extended periods of time and experience pulsed periods of activity facilitated by infrequent rainfall. Microcoleus vaginatus, a non-diazotrophic filamentous cyanobacterium, is the key primary producer in BSCs in the Colorado Plateau and is an early pioneer in colonizing arid environments. Over decades, BSCs proceed through developmental stages with increasing complexity of constituent microorganisms and macroscopic properties. Metabolic interactions among BSC microorganisms probably play a key role in determining the community dynamics and cycling of carbon and nitrogen. However, these metabolic interactions have not been studied systematically. Towards this goal, exometabolomic analysis was performed using liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry on biological soil crust pore water and spent media of key soil bacterial isolates. Comparison of spent vs. fresh media was used to determine uptake or release of metabolites by specific microbes. To link pore water experiments with isolate studies, metabolite extracts of authentic soil were used as supplements for isolate exometabolomic profiling. Our soil metabolomics methods detected hundreds of metabolites from soils including many novel compounds. Overall, Microcoleus vaginatus was found to release and utilize a broad range of metabolites. Many of these metabolites were also taken up by heterotrophs but there were surprisingly few metabolites uptaken by all isolates. This points to a competition for a small set of central metabolites and specialization of individual heterotrophs towards a diverse pool of available organic nutrients. Overall, these data suggest that understanding the substrate specialization of biological soil crust bacteria can help link community structure to nutrient cycling.

  6. Mutual relationships between soils and biological carrier systems.

    PubMed

    Zohar-Perez, C; Chet, I; Nussinovitch, A

    2005-10-01

    Improved viability and antagonistic activity of biocontrol agents during soil inoculation is of crucial importance to their effective application. The chitinolytic bacterium Serratia marcescens was used as a model organism to study the efficacy of freeze-dried alginate beads (in comparison to their non-dried counterparts) as possible carriers for immobilized biocontrol agents. The release of bacteria and chitinolytic enzyme from alginate beads, before and during their application in soil, was examined, and the beads' physical properties characterized. Dispersal of the alginate bead-entrapped S. marcescens in the soil resulted in high soil cell densities throughout the 35 days of the experiment. Chitin inclusion in the beads resulted in significantly higher chitinolytic activity of S. marcescens, increased dry-bead porosity and decreased stiffness. Rehydration of the dried beads (after immersion in soil) resulted in a sixfold increase in weight due to water absorption. No significant differences were found in bacterial count inside the non-dried (gel) versus dried beads. However, higher cell densities and chitinase activity were detected in soil containing dried beads with chitin than in that containing their non-dried counterparts. The biological performance of S. marcescens was examined in the greenhouse: a free cell suspension reduced bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) disease by 10%, while immobilized bacteria found in the dried, chitin-containing beads reduced disease by 60%. PMID:15962339

  7. Biological Chlorine Cycling in Arctic Peat Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zlamal, J. E.; Raab, T. K.; Lipson, D.

    2014-12-01

    Soils of the Arctic tundra near Barrow, Alaska are waterlogged and anoxic throughout most of the profile due to underlying permafrost. Microbial communities in these soils are adapted for the dominant anaerobic conditions and are capable of a surprising diversity of metabolic pathways. Anaerobic respiration in this environment warrants further study, particularly in the realm of electron cycling involving chlorine, which preliminary data suggest may play an important role in arctic anaerobic soil respiration. For decades, Cl was rarely studied outside of the context of solvent-contaminated sites due to the widely held belief that it is an inert element. However, Cl has increasingly become recognized as a metabolic player in microbial communities and soil cycling processes. Organic chlorinated compounds (Clorg) can be made by various organisms and used metabolically by others, such as serving as electron acceptors for microbes performing organohalide respiration. Sequencing our arctic soil samples has uncovered multiple genera of microorganisms capable of participating in many Cl-cycling processes including organohalide respiration, chlorinated hydrocarbon degradation, and perchlorate reduction. Metagenomic analysis of these soils has revealed genes for key enzymes of Cl-related metabolic processes such as dehalogenases and haloperoxidases, and close matches to genomes of known organohalide respiring microorganisms from the Dehalococcoides, Dechloromonas, Carboxydothermus, and Anaeromyxobacter genera. A TOX-100 Chlorine Analyzer was used to quantify total Cl in arctic soils, and these data were examined further to separate levels of inorganic Cl compounds and Clorg. Levels of Clorg increased with soil organic matter content, although total Cl levels lack this trend. X-ray Absorption Near Edge Structure (XANES) was used to provide information on the structure of Clorg in arctic soils, showing great diversity with Cl bound to both aromatic and alkyl groups. Incubations were conducted in the laboratory providing arctic soils with Clorg, and measurements taken to assess rates of organohalide respiration show an increase in chloride production due to microbial activity. Investigating these soils with diverse techniques affirms the importance of Cl-cycling in a pristine arctic tundra ecosystem.

  8. [Ecological effect of hygroscopic and condensate water on biological soil crusts in Shapotou region of China].

    PubMed

    Pan, Yan-Xia; Wang, Xin-Ping; Zhang, Ya-Feng; Hu, Rui

    2013-03-01

    By the method of field experiment combined with laboratory analysis, this paper studied the ecological significance of hygroscopic and condensate water on the biological soil crusts in the vegetation sand-fixing area in Shapotou region of China. In the study area, 90% of hygroscopic and condensate water was within the 3 cm soil depth, which didn' t affect the surface soil water content. The hygroscopic and condensate water generated at night involved in the exchange process of soil surface water and atmosphere water vapor, made up the loss of soil water due to the evaporation during the day, and made the surface soil water not reduced rapidly. The amount of the generated hygroscopic and condensate water had a positive correlation with the chlorophyll content of biological soil crusts, indicating that the hygroscopic and condensate water could improve the growth activity of the biological soil crusts, and thus, benefit the biomass accumulation of the crusts. PMID:23755477

  9. Evaluation of Biological and Enzymatic Activity of Soil in a Tropical Dry Forest: Desierto de la Tatacoa (Colombia) with Potential in Mars Terraforming and Other Similar Planets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno Moreno, A. N.

    2009-12-01

    Desierto de la Tatacoa has been determined to be a tropical dry forest bioma, which is located at 3° 13" N 75° 13" W. It has a hot thermal floor with 440 msnm of altitude; it has a daily average of 28° C, and a maximum of 40° C, Its annual rainfall total can be upwards of 1250 mm. Its solar sheen has a daily average of 5.8 hours and its relative humidity is between 60% and 65%. Therefore, the life forms presents are very scant, and in certain places, almost void. It was realized a completely random sampling of soil from its surface down to 6 inches deep, of zones without vegetation and with soils highly loaded by oxides of iron in order to determine the number of microorganisms per gram and its subsequent identification. It was measured the soil basal respiration. Besides, it was determined enzymatic activity (catalase, dehydrogenase, phosphatase and urease). Starting with the obtained results, it is developes an alternative towards the study of soil genesis in Mars in particular, and recommendations for same process in other planets. Although the information found in the experiments already realized in Martian soil they demonstrate that doesnt exist any enzymatic activity, the knowledge of the same topic in the soil is proposed as an alternative to problems like carbonic fixing of the dense Martian atmosphere of CO2, the degradation of inorganic compounds amongst other in order to prepare the substratum for later colonization by some life form.

  10. METHOD FOR SCALING BIOLOGICAL RESPONSE OF SOIL MICROCOSMS

    EPA Science Inventory

    An extensive series of laboratory experiments was conducted in soil microcosms to study the respiratory response of microorganisms to toxicant amendments within different types of soils. Our analysis of test results demonstrates that coupled biological and environmental factors w...

  11. Effects of soil type and farm management on soil ecological functional genes and microbial activities

    SciTech Connect

    Reeve, Jennifer; Schadt, Christopher Warren; Carpenter-Boggs, Lynne; Kang, S.; Zhou, Jizhong; Reganold, John P.

    2010-01-01

    Relationships between soil microbial diversity and soil function are the subject of much debate. Process-level analyses have shown that microbial function varies with soil type and responds to soil management. However, such measurements cannot determine the role of community structure and diversity in soil function. The goal of this study was to investigate the role of gene frequency and diversity, measured by microarray analysis, on soil processes. The study was conducted in an agro-ecosystem characterized by contrasting management practices and soil types. Eight pairs of adjacent commercial organic and conventional strawberry fields were matched for soil type, strawberry variety, and all other environmental conditions. Soil physical, chemical and biological analyses were conducted including functional gene microarrays (FGA). Soil physical and chemical characteristics were primarily determined by soil textural type (coarse vs fine-textured), but biological and FGA measures were more influenced by management (organic vs conventional). Organically managed soils consistently showed greater functional activity as well as FGA signal intensity (SI) and diversity. Overall FGA SI and diversity were correlated to total soil microbial biomass. Functional gene group SI and/or diversity were correlated to related soil chemical and biological measures such as microbial biomass, cellulose, dehydrogenase, ammonium and sulfur. Management was the dominant determinant of soil biology as measured by microbial gene frequency and diversity, which paralleled measured microbial processes.

  12. [Effects of tillage methods on soil physicochemical properties and biological characteristics in farmland: A review].

    PubMed

    Li, Yu-jie; Wang, Hui; Zhao, Jian-ning; Huangfu, Chao-he; Yang, Dian-lin

    2015-03-01

    Tillage methods affect soil heat, water, nutrients and soil biology in different ways. Reasonable soil management system can not only improve physical and chemical properties of the soil, but also change the ecological process of farmland soil. Conservation tillage can improve the quality of the soil to different degrees. For example, no-tillage system can effectively improve soil enzyme activity. No tillage and subsoiling tillage can provide abundant resources for soil microbe' s growth and reproduction. No tillage, minimum tillage and other conservation tillage methods exert little disturbance to soil animals, and in turn affect the quantity and diversity of the soil animals as well as their population structure. Effects of different tillage methods on soil physical and chemical properties as well as biological characteristics were reviewed in this article, with the soil physical and chemical indices, enzyme activities, soil microbe diversity and soil animals under different tillage patterns analyzed. The possibility of soil quality restoration with appropriate tillage methods and the future research direction were pointed out. PMID:26211079

  13. Biological activities of carrageenan.

    PubMed

    Pangestuti, Ratih; Kim, Se-Kwon

    2014-01-01

    Red seaweeds are popular and economically important worldwide and also well known for their medicinal effects due to the presence of phycocolloids. Carrageenans, the major phycocolloid group of red algae, have been extensively investigated for their vast array of bioactivities such as anticoagulant, antiviral, cholesterol-lowering effects, immunomodulatory activity, and antioxidant. Carrageenan possesses promising activity both in vitro and in vivo, showing promising potential to be developed as therapeutic agents. In this chapter, attempts have been made to examine the health benefit effects of carrageenans. PMID:25081080

  14. Impact of environmental factors and biological soil crust types on soil respiration in a desert ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Feng, Wei; Zhang, Yuqing; Jia, Xin; Wu, Bin; Zha, Tianshan; Qin, Shugao; Wang, Ben; Shao, Chenxi; Liu, Jiabin; Fa, Keyu

    2014-01-01

    The responses of soil respiration to environmental conditions have been studied extensively in various ecosystems. However, little is known about the impacts of temperature and moisture on soils respiration under biological soil crusts. In this study, CO2 efflux from biologically-crusted soils was measured continuously with an automated chamber system in Ningxia, northwest China, from June to October 2012. The highest soil respiration was observed in lichen-crusted soil (0.93 0.43 mol m-2 s-1) and the lowest values in algae-crusted soil (0.73 0.31 mol m-2 s-1). Over the diurnal scale, soil respiration was highest in the morning whereas soil temperature was highest in the midday, which resulted in diurnal hysteresis between the two variables. In addition, the lag time between soil respiration and soil temperature was negatively correlated with the soil volumetric water content and was reduced as soil water content increased. Over the seasonal scale, daily mean nighttime soil respiration was positively correlated with soil temperature when moisture exceeded 0.075 and 0.085 m3 m-3 in lichen- and moss-crusted soil, respectively. However, moisture did not affect on soil respiration in algae-crusted soil during the study period. Daily mean nighttime soil respiration normalized by soil temperature increased with water content in lichen- and moss-crusted soil. Our results indicated that different types of biological soil crusts could affect response of soil respiration to environmental factors. There is a need to consider the spatial distribution of different types of biological soil crusts and their relative contributions to the total C budgets at the ecosystem or landscape level. PMID:25050837

  15. Impact of Environmental Factors and Biological Soil Crust Types on Soil Respiration in a Desert Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Wei; Zhang, Yuqing; Jia, Xin; Wu, Bin; Zha, Tianshan; Qin, Shugao; Wang, Ben; Shao, Chenxi; Liu, Jiabin; Fa, Keyu

    2014-01-01

    The responses of soil respiration to environmental conditions have been studied extensively in various ecosystems. However, little is known about the impacts of temperature and moisture on soils respiration under biological soil crusts. In this study, CO2 efflux from biologically-crusted soils was measured continuously with an automated chamber system in Ningxia, northwest China, from June to October 2012. The highest soil respiration was observed in lichen-crusted soil (0.930.43 mol m?2 s?1) and the lowest values in algae-crusted soil (0.730.31 mol m?2 s?1). Over the diurnal scale, soil respiration was highest in the morning whereas soil temperature was highest in the midday, which resulted in diurnal hysteresis between the two variables. In addition, the lag time between soil respiration and soil temperature was negatively correlated with the soil volumetric water content and was reduced as soil water content increased. Over the seasonal scale, daily mean nighttime soil respiration was positively correlated with soil temperature when moisture exceeded 0.075 and 0.085 m3 m?3 in lichen- and moss-crusted soil, respectively. However, moisture did not affect on soil respiration in algae-crusted soil during the study period. Daily mean nighttime soil respiration normalized by soil temperature increased with water content in lichen- and moss-crusted soil. Our results indicated that different types of biological soil crusts could affect response of soil respiration to environmental factors. There is a need to consider the spatial distribution of different types of biological soil crusts and their relative contributions to the total C budgets at the ecosystem or landscape level. PMID:25050837

  16. Evaporative losses from soils covered by physical and different types of biological soil crusts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chamizo, S.; Cantn, Y.; Domingo, F.; Belnap, J.

    2013-01-01

    Evaporation of soil moisture is one of the most important processes affecting water availability in semiarid ecosystems. Biological soil crusts, which are widely distributed ground cover in these ecosystems, play a recognized role on water processes. Where they roughen surfaces, water residence time and thus infiltration can be greatly enhanced, whereas their ability to clog soil pores or cap the soil surface when wetted can greatly decrease infiltration rate, thus affecting evaporative losses. In this work, we compared evaporation in soils covered by physical crusts, biological crusts in different developmental stages and in the soils underlying the different biological crust types. Our results show that during the time of the highest evaporation (Day 1), there was no difference among any of the crust types or the soils underlying them. On Day 2, when soil moisture was moderately low (11%), evaporation was slightly higher in well-developed biological soil crusts than in physical or poorly developed biological soil crusts. However, crust removal did not cause significant changes in evaporation compared with the respective soil crust type. These results suggest that the small differences we observed in evaporation among crust types could be caused by differences in the properties of the soil underneath the biological crusts. At low soil moisture (<6%), there was no difference in evaporation among crust types or the underlying soils. Water loss for the complete evaporative cycle (from saturation to dry soil) was similar in both crusted and scraped soils. Therefore, we conclude that for the specific crust and soil types tested, the presence or the type of biological soil crust did not greatly modify evaporation with respect to physical crusts or scraped soils.

  17. Effects of amendment of different biochars on soil physical and biological properties related to carbon mineralization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Renduo; Zhu, Shuzhi; Ouyang, Lei

    2014-05-01

    Biochar addition to soils potentially affects various soil properties, and these effects are dependent on biochars derived from different feedstock materials and pyrolysis processes. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of amendment of different biochars on soil physical and biological properties. Biochars were produced with dairy manure and woodchip at temperatures of 300, 500, and 700°C, respectively. Each biochar was mixed at 5% (w/w) with a forest soil and the mixture was incubated for 180 days, during which soil physical and biological properties, and soil respiration rates were measured. Results showed that the biochar addition significantly enhanced the formation of soil macroaggregates at the early incubation time. The biochar application significantly reduced soil bulk density, increased the amount of soil organic matter, and stimulated microbial activity and soil respiration rates at the early incubation stage. Biochar applications improved water retention capacity, with stronger effects by biochars produced at higher pyrolysis temperatures. At the same suction, the soil with woodchip biochars possessed higher water content than with the dairy manure biochars. Biochar addition significantly affected the soil physical and biological properties, which resulted in different soil carbon mineralization rates.

  18. Active synthetic soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ming, Douglas W. (Inventor); Henninger, Donald L. (Inventor); Allen, Earl R. (Inventor); Golden, Dadigamuwage C. (Inventor)

    1995-01-01

    A synthetic soil/fertilizer for horticultural application having all the agronutrients essential for plant growth is disclosed. The soil comprises a synthetic apatite fertilizer having sulfur, magnesium and micronutrients dispersed in a calcium phosphate matrix, a zeolite cation exchange medium saturated with a charge of potassium and nitrogen cations, and an optional pH buffer. Moisture dissolves the apatite and mobilizes the nutrient elements from the apatite matrix and the zeolite charge sites.

  19. Active synthetic soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ming, Douglas W. (Inventor); Henninger, Donald L. (Inventor); Allen, Earl R. (Inventor); Golden, Dadigamuwage C. (Inventor)

    1995-01-01

    A synthetic soil/fertilizer for horticultural application having all the agronutrients essential for plant growth is disclosed. The soil comprises a synthetic apatite fertilizer having sulfur, magnesium, and micronutrients dispersed in a calcium phosphate matrix, a zeolite cation exchange medium saturated with a charge of potassium and nitrogen cations, and an optional pH buffer. Moisture dissolves the apatite and mobilizes the nutrient elements from the apatite matrix and the zeolite charge sites.

  20. Biological and Physico-chemical Processes of Soil Organic Matter Cycling in Diverse Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jagadamma, S.; Mayes, M. A.; Steinweg, J. M.; Post, W. M.; Wang, G.

    2011-12-01

    Soils comprise the largest biologically active terrestrial pool of organic carbon (OC). The top meter of soil contains 1500 Pg of OC which is 3 times that present in vegetation and two times the CO2-C present in atmosphere. Current soil C models simulate soil C pool sizes and turnover rates on post-hoc basis and the mechanisms governing soil OC cycling have not been integrated in such models. Therefore the scale of applicability and accuracy of predictions of current C models are questionable. Our current efforts are focused on developing a mechanistic framework of soil C cycling processes and its linkage to global C model. As part of this effort, we seek to understand the important cycling and interactive processes of OC compounds with the soil minerals and microbial community on a global suite of soils from temperate, tropical and arctic ecosystems. The selected OC compounds are glucose, cellulose, stearic acid and vanillic acid which are representative of SOM composition that contains 5-15% sugars, 20-50% starch, 10% proteins, 20-30% lignin and 2-5% lipids. We hypothesize that physico-chemical interactions between OC compounds and soil minerals determines the biological stability and distribution of such compounds in soils. Cycling of the selected 14C-labeled OC compounds were investigated as a function of soil type, soil depth and functional components of SOM (dissolved organic carbon, DOC; particulate organic matter, POM; and mineral associated organic matter, MAOM). This presentation will consist of the results from sorption and long-term incubation experiments conducted on diverse soils by the addition of 14C-glucose. Sorption of 14C-glucose on soil minerals was determined by batch equilibration experiments of MAOM fraction at a solid-to-solution ratio of 1:60 for 8 hours. A series of initial glucose solutions containing 0-100 mg C/L unlabeled C and 4000 dpm/ml labeled C were used. Maximum sorption capacity (Qmax) and affinity coefficient (K) were determined by fitting the experimental data to the Langmuir model. Results indicated that C sorption potential varies across different climates, soil types and soil horizons. Tropical Oxisol from Costa Rica exhibited the lowest Qmax (12 mgC kg-1) and temperate Alfisols from United States exhibited the highest Qmax (4893 mgC kg-1) for the added glucose. Another interesting finding is that the MAOM derived from the surface soil likely possess higher sorption capacity than that of subsoil. The biological cycling of C through microbes via microbial uptake and mineralization processes are currently being undertaken by monitoring the 14CO2 evolution from the long-term incubation experiments. Additionally, the evidence of priming as a result of glucose addition will also be tested and presented at the meeting. The ultimate outcome of this study is the development of a mechanistically-based and globally-relevant soils C model that is linkable into widely-used global circulation models.

  1. Biological indicators of soil quality and soil organic matter characteristics in an agricultural management continuum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Relationships among biological indicators of soil quality and soil organic matter characteristics in a claypan soil were evaluated across a continuum of long-term agricultural practices in Missouri, USA. In addition to chemical and physical soil quality indicators, dehydrogenase and phenol oxidase a...

  2. Application Sequence and soil biology influence anaerobic soil disinfestation induced disease suppression

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anaerobic soil disinfestation (ASD) and mustard seed meal (MSM) soil amendments can yield significant control of a diversity of soil-borne pests and pathogens. The mechanisms functional in disease suppression are diverse and with regard to MSM amendment, soil biology has been shown to have a signif...

  3. MAKING SOIL BIOLOGY WORK FOR YOU

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Effective soil resource management will help U.S. agriculture meet the challenges stemming from increases in global population and energy costs. Soils are defined by the life within them which allows them to support plant growth. Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are a keystone group of soil organ...

  4. FLUSH OF CO2 AS A SOIL BIOLOGICAL QUALITY INDICATOR

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil microbial biomass is an active part of soil organic matter that plays a key role in the decomposition of organic materials, nutrient cycling, and formation of soil structure. Measurement of soil microbial biomass has been proposed with a number of biochemical procedures, which vary in their sen...

  5. Solar Energy Project, Activities: Biology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tullock, Bruce, Ed.; And Others

    This guide contains lesson plans and outlines of science activities which present concepts of solar energy in the context of biology experiments. Each unit presents an introduction; objectives; skills and knowledge needed; materials; methods; questions; recommendations for further work; and a teacher information sheet. The teacher information

  6. Diverse biological activities of dandelion.

    PubMed

    Gonzlez-Castejn, Marta; Visioli, Francesco; Rodriguez-Casado, Arantxa

    2012-09-01

    Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale Weber) is a member of the Asteraceae (Compositae) family, native to Europe but widely distributed in the warmer temperate zones of the Northern Hemisphere. Dandelion and its parts are habitually consumed as plant foods in several areas of the world, where they are also employed in phytotherapy. Indeed, dandelion contains a wide array of phytochemicals whose biological activities are actively being explored in various areas of human health. In particular, emerging evidence suggests that dandelion and its constituents have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities that result in diverse biological effects. The present review provides a comprehensive analysis of the constituents of dandelion, an assessment of the pharmacological properties of dandelion, and a description of relevant studies that support the use of dandelion as a medicinal plant. PMID:22946853

  7. Biological activity of ionene polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rembaum, A.

    1973-01-01

    Ionene polymers are polyammonium salts with positive nitrogens in the backbone, resulting from the polycondensation of diamines with dihalides or from the polycondensation of halo amines. The mechanism of formation of ionene polymers of different structures and their biological activity is reviewed. The antimicrobial and antifungal properties are compared with low molecular weight ammonium salts. Ionenes were found to combine with DNA by means of ionic bonds to yield similar complexes to those obtained with polyamines (spermine and spermidine). They also combine with nerve cell receptors and exercise a more powerful and longer duration ganglionic blocking action than their monomeric analogs. The antiheparin activity of ionenes and the thromboresistance of elastomeric ionene heparin coatings is described. The enhanced biological activity of ionenes as compared with low molecular weight compounds is attributed to a cooperative effect of a large number of positive charges on the polymeric chains.

  8. RESPONSE OF SOIL MICROBIOLOGICAL ACTIVITIES TO CD, PB, AND ZN SALT AMENDMENTS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Heavy metal pollution of soil has been recognized as a major factor impeding soil microbial processes. We studied responses of the soil biological activities to metal stress simulated by soil amendment with Zn, Pb and Cd chlorides. The amounts of heavy metal salts added to five metal polluted soils ...

  9. Investigation of Biological Soil Crusts Metabolic Webs Using Exometabolomic Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Northen, T.; Karaoz, U.; Jenkins, S.; Lau, R.; Bowen, B.; Cadillo-Quiroz, H.; Garcia-Pichel, F.; Brodie, E.; Richard, B.

    2014-12-01

    Desert biological soil crusts are simple cyanobacteria-dominated surface soil microbial communities found in areas with infrequent wetting, often extreme temperatures, low coverage of vascular plants and constitute the world's largest biofilm. They exist for extended periods in a desiccated dormant state, yet rapidly re-boot metabolism within minutes of wetting. These soil microbial communities are highly dependent on filamentous cyanobacteria such as Microcoleus vaginatusto stabilize the soil and to act as primary producers for the community through the release carbon sources to feed a diversity of heterotrophs. Exometabolomic analysis was performed using liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry on biological soil crust pore water and spent media of key soil bacterial isolates. Comparison of spent vs. fresh media was used to determine uptake or release of metabolites by specific microbes. To link pore water experiments with isolate studies, metabolite extracts of authentic soil were used as supplements for isolate exometabolomic profiling. Our soil metabolomics methods detected hundreds of metabolites from soils including may novel compounds. Only a small set of which being targeted by all isolates. Beyond these few metabolites, the individual bacteria examined showed specialization towards specific metabolites. Surprisingly, many of the most abundant oligosaccharides and other metabolites were ignored by these isolates. The observed specialization of biological soil crust bacteria may play a significant role in determining community structure.

  10. Biological and biochemical soil indicators: monitoring tools of different agricultural managements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scotti, Riccardo; Sultana, Salma; Scelza, Rosalia; Marzaioli, Rossana; D'Ascoli, Rosaria; Rao, Maria A.

    2010-05-01

    The intensive agricultural managements, increased in the last twenty years, have resulted in a decrease in fertility of soils, representing a serious threat to agricultural productivity due to both the increase in production cost, mainly for intensive use of mineral fertilizers, and the loss of the quality of crops themselves. Organic matter content is closely related to the soil fertility and its progressive reduction in cultivates soils, without a satisfactory recovery, could make agriculture untenable, resulting in a high detrimental effect on environment. But an appropriate soil management practices can improve soil quality by utilizing organic amendments as alternative to mineral fertilizers to increase soil quality and plant growth. In this context, demand of suitable indicators, whose are able to assess the impact of different agricultural managements on soil quality, has increased. It has shown that soil biological and biochemical properties are able to respond to small changes in soil conditions, thus providing information on subtle alterations in soil quality. Aim of this study was to evaluate the use of soil biological and biochemical properties as fertility indicators in agricultural soils under different agricultural managements, sited in Campania Region (Southern Italy). After a preliminary monitoring phase of soil fertility on different farms sited in five agricultural areas of Campania Region, we have selected two farms in two different study areas to assess the effect on soil quality of different organic amendments. In particular, a compost from municipal solid waste and wood from scraps of poplars pruning were supplied in different doses and ratios. Soil samplings after one month from the amendment addition and then every 4 months until a year were carried out. All collected soil samples were characterized by main physical, chemical, biochemical and biological properties. In general, the use of different organic amendments showed a positive effect on fertility of both soils under intensive farming. In general, all enzymatic activities and organic carbon content increased after 1 month, and they were still higher after 4 months from amendment application. Microbial biomass and soil potential activity (respiration) showed significantly higher values in soils added with organic amendments, for both farms and samplings, with more marked effects on respiration in the first sampling. In conclusion results showed, in general, a quick response as indicators of the assayed biological and biochemical soil properties and a good recovery in fertility of the studied agricultural soils. The project was founded by CCIIAA of Salerno

  11. Biological soil crusts as an integral component of desert environments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, Jayne; Weber, Bettina

    2013-01-01

    The biology and ecology of biological soil crusts, a soil surface community of mosses, lichens, cyanobacteria, green algae, fungi, and bacteria, have only recently been a topic of research. Most efforts began in the western U.S. (Cameron, Harper, Rushforth, and St. Clair), Australia (Rogers), and Israel (Friedmann, Evenari, and Lange) in the late 1960s and 1970s (e.g., Friedmann et al. 1967; Evenari 1985reviewed in Harper and Marble 1988). However, these groups worked independently of each other and, in fact, were often not aware of each other’s work. In addition, biological soil crust communities were seen as more a novelty than a critical component of dryland ecosystems. Since then, researchers have investigated many different aspects of these communities and have shown that although small to microscopic, biological soil crusts are critical in many ecological processes of deserts. They often cover most of desert soil surfaces and substantially mediate inputs and outputs from desert soils (Belnap et al. 2003). They can be a large source of biodiversity for deserts, as they can contain more species than the surrounding vascular plant community (Rosentreter 1986). These communities are important in reducing soil erosion and increasing soil fertility through the capture of dust and the fixation of atmospheric nitrogen and carbon into forms available to other life forms (Elbert et al. 2012). Because of their many effects on soil characteristics, such as external and internal morphological characteristics, aggregate stability, soil moisture, and permeability, they also affect seed germination and establishment and local hydrological cycles. Covering up to 70% of the surface area in many arid and semi-arid regions around the world (Belnap and Lange 2003), biological soil crusts are a key component within desert environments.

  12. Application of MCPA herbicide on soils amended with biostimulants: short-time effects on soil biological properties.

    PubMed

    Tejada, Manuel; Garca-Martnez, Ana M; Gmez, Isidoro; Parrado, Juan

    2010-08-01

    In this paper we studied in the laboratory the effect of MCPA herbicide at a rate of 1.5lha(-1) (manufactures rate recommended) on biological properties of a Plagic Antrosol amended with four biostimulants (WCDS, wheat condensed distillers soluble; PA-HE, hydrolyzed poultry feathers; CGHE, carob germ enzymatic extract; and RB, rice bran extract). Seven hundred grams of soil were mixed with WCDS at a rate of 10%, CGHE at a rate of 4.7%, PA-HE at a rate of 4.3%, and RB at a rate of 4.4%, respectively, in order to applying the same amount of organic matter to the soil (16.38 g organic matter). An unamended polluted and amended non-polluted soil were used as control. For all treatments, the soil ergosterol, dehydrogenase, urease, and phosphatase activities were measured at two incubation times (0 and 60 d). The 16S rDNA-DGGE profiles in all treatments were determined at the beginning and end of the incubation period. The results indicated that at the end of the incubation period and compared with the control soil, the dehydrogenase, urease and phosphatase activities and ergosterol decreased 39.3%, 20%, 15.7% and 56.5%, respectively in the non-organic amended polluted soil. The application of organic matter to unpolluted soil increased the enzymatic activities and ergosterol. However, this stimulation was higher in the soil amended with RB, followed by PA-HE, WCDS and CGHE. The application of herbicide in organic-amended soils decreased the enzymatic activities and ergosterol content. However, this decrease was lower than for the non-amended herbicide polluted soil. Possibly the low molecular weight protein content easily assimilated by soil microorganisms and the adsorption capacity of humic substances are responsible for less inhibition of these enzyme activities and soil ergosterol. The 16S rDNA-DGGE profiles indicated that herbicide did not negatively affect soil bacterial biodiversity. PMID:20510432

  13. Impact of an intensive management on soil biochemical and biological properties in an agricultural soil of Southern Italy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scotti, R.; D'Ascoli, R.; Rao, M. A.; Marzaioli, R.; Rutigliano, F. A.; Gianfreda, L.

    2009-04-01

    An intensive management of agricultural soils is widely carried out to increase vegetation productivity. Nevertheless, the large use of machineries, chemical fertilizers and pesticides can often cause, in time, a substantial decline in soil fertility by affecting soil physical and chemical properties and, in turn, growth and activity of soil microbial community. In fact, alteration in soil structure, nutrient losses and, in particular, changes in quality and quantity of soil organic matter are some of the principal soil degradation processes deriving from an intensive agricultural management that can affect, in different ways, soil biochemical and biological properties. The aim of this research was to assess the impact of intensive management on agricultural soils by measuring soil physical, chemical and biochemical/biological properties. The use of appropriate indicators as quantitative tools could allow to assess soil quality. Moreover, although soil physical and chemical properties have received great attention, soil biochemical/biological properties, such as enzyme activities and microbial biomass, functionally related properties involved in the nutrient cycles, can be considered as sensitive indicators of soil quality and health changes because, they show a faster turn over compared to soil organic matter. Our attention was focused on the Plane of Sele river (Campania region, Italy), an area characterized by an intensive agriculture and greenhouse cultures. Twenty-five farms were chosen, with the aid of regional soil map, in order to get soils with different physical and chemical properties. As common trait, the selected farms, all with greenhouse cultures, used no organic amendments but only mineral compounds to fertilize soils. Moreover, to better understand the impact of intensive agricultural practices on soil of each farm, control soils from orchards or uncultivated plots were chosen. In each farm soil samples were collected in three different plots within a greenhouse or within a field, for control soils. Every sample was formed by 5 sub-samples collected in 5 different points following a W scheme in the plot. All samples, sieved at 2 mm mesh, were stored at 4 °C and characterized by analysing the following soil physical and chemical, properties: soil texture, bulk density, water content, water holding capacity, pH, cation exchange capacity, organic carbon, total nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, lime, and electrical conductivity were determined. Moreover the activity of dehydrogenase, beta-glucosidase, urease, phosphatase, and arilsulphatase, the enzymes involved in the biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorous and sulphur, respectively, as well as microbial biomass C were measured. Results of this study seem to indicate that a great variability exists among the farms. A clear evidence is that the control samples, not subjected to intensive farming, always showed better values of chemical properties and higher values of enzymatic activity and microbial biomass to indicate a negative effect of intensive agriculture practices on soil quality and fertility in studied areas. Data confirm that enzymatic activities and microbial biomass can be considered valid and sensitive indicators of soil quality.

  14. Soil disturbance increases soil microbial enzymatic activity in arid ecoregion

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Functional diversity of the soil microbial community is commonly used in the assessment of soil health as it relates to the activity of soil microflora involved in carbon cycling. Soil microbes in different microenvironments will have varying responses to different substrates, thus catabolic fingerp...

  15. Wildfire effects on biological properties of soils in forest-steppe ecosystems of Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maksimova, E.; Abakumov, E.

    2014-01-01

    Soils affected by forest wildfires in 2010 in Russia were studied on postfire and mature plots near the Togljatty city, Samara region. Soil biological properties and ash composition dynamics were investigated under the forest fire affect: a place of local forest fire, riding forest fire and unaffected site by fire-control (mature) during 3 yr of restoration. Soil samples were collected at 0-15 cm. Soil biological properties was measured by the fumigation method. The analytical data obtained shows that wildfires lead to serious changes in a soil profile and soil chemistry of upper horizons. Wildfires change a chemical composition of soil horizons and increase their ash-content. Fires lead to accumulation of biogenic elements' content (P and K) in the solum fine earth. Calcium content is increased as a result of fires that leads to an alkaline pH of the solum. The values of nutrients decreased as a result of leaching out with an atmospheric precipitation during the second year of restoration. Thus, when the upper horizons are burning the ash arriving on a soil surface enrich it with nutrients. The mature (unaffected by fire) soils is characterized by the greatest values of soil microbial biomass in the top horizon and, respectively, the bigger values of basal respiration whereas declining of the both parameters was revealed on postfire soils. Nevertheless this influence does not extend on depth more than 10 cm. Thus, fire affect on the soil were recognized in decreasing of microbiological activity.

  16. Effects of biological weathering on mine soil genesis and fertility

    SciTech Connect

    Everett, C.J.

    1981-01-01

    Strip mine spoils derived from overburden rocks of the Pennsylvanian Wise Formation in Buchanan County, Virginia, commonly contain 40% less than 2 mm sized soil material. The physical and chemical properties of these soil materials are related to their rock origin. The soil materials are alkaline due to the presence of carbonates. The principal source of P in the soil materials is apatite, and the principal source of K is mica. A greenhouse experiment was conducted to determine the short-term plant availability of P and K in these soil materials. Growth of sericea lespedeza over a 60-day period was found to be limited by P availability and not to be limited by K availability. Uptake of P by servicea lespedeza from P fertilized and unfertilized soil materials was found to be correlated with NaHCO3 extractable P from pots which received the same fertilizer treatments but did not contain plants. The correlations obtained were soil material specific. A separate greenhouse experiment was conducted in order to identify the effects of biological weathering on soil material properties. Sericea lespedeza and black locust were grown on unfertilized brown sandstone soil material for one year. Soil material pH was uniformly reduced by plant action regardless of proximity to roots. The P present in the soil material, however, was not uniformly depleted. Over half of the P removed from the soil material by sericea lespedeza and black locust was P which cannot be extracted using dilute HCl-H2SO4, but can be extracted using concentrated HCl. The results of the two experiments indicate that the plant availability of P and K in the soil materials is influenced by biological weathering. Acidification of the soil material increases the availability of P present in apatite particles. Uptake of K insures that the soil solution is constantly replenished with K from mica and that mica is transformed into vermiculite.

  17. Biological Dimensions of Crack Morphology in Dryland Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeCarlo, K. F.; Spiegel, M.; Caylor, K. K.

    2014-12-01

    Macropores and cracks have an integral role in soil hydrology, and the physicochemical factors that induce them have been the subject of much laboratory research. How these processes translate to field soils, however, is often obfuscated by the biological elements present that complicate its formation and dynamics. In this study, we investigated the biological influence of herbivores and vegetation on 3D crack morphology in a dryland swelling soil (black cotton/vertisol). Fieldwork was conducted at and near the Kenya Long-Term Exclosure Experiment (KLEE) plots in Mpala, central Kenya, where three different soil regions were identified: highly vegetated areas, animal trails, and termite mounds. Crack networks were physically characterized by pouring liquid resin into the soil and excavating them when dry, after which they were imaged and quantified using medical magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Cracking intensity of each cast was corrected via soil moisture and bulk density measurements at 5 cm intervals over 30 cm. 3D characterization of the soil system shows that mechanical compaction is a major influence in the formation of extensive and deep cracks in animal trails, with megaherbivores (e.g. elephants) inducing the most extreme cracks. Bioturbation is seen as a major influence in the formation of shallower cracks in termite mounds, as termites loosen and aerate the soil and reduce the soil's cohesive properties. Highly vegetated soils show a large degree of variability: small, disconnected soil patches induced by vegetative cover and a larger root network results in smaller and shallower cracks, but full vegetative cover induces deep and irregular cracks, possibly due to diverted rainfall. Our results highlight the intricate connections between the biology and physics that dictate soil processes in a complex soil system at the field scale.

  18. Rich in life but poor in data: the known knowns and known unknowns of modelling how soil biology drives soil structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hallett, Paul; Ogden, Mike

    2015-04-01

    Soil biology has a fascinating capacity to manipulate pore structure by altering or overcoming hydrological and mechanical properties of soil. Many have postulated, quite rightly, that this capacity of soil biology to 'engineer' its habitat drives its diversity, improves competitiveness and increases resilience to external stresses. A large body of observational research has quantified pore structure evolution accompanied by the growth of organisms in soil. Specific compounds that are exuded by organisms or the biological structures they create have been isolated and found to correlate well with observed changes to pore structure or soil stability. This presentation will provide an overview of basic mechanical and hydrological properties of soil that are affected by biology, and consider missing data that are essential to model how they impact soil structure evolution. Major knowledge gaps that prevent progress will be identified and suggestions will be made of how research in this area should progress. We call for more research to gain a process based understanding of structure formation by biology, to complement observational studies of soil structure before and after imposed biological activity. Significant advancement has already been made in modelling soil stabilisation by plant roots, by combining data on root biomechanics, root-soil interactions and soil mechanical properties. Approaches for this work were developed from earlier materials science and geotechnical engineering research, and the same ethos should be adopted to model the impacts of other biological compounds. Fungal hyphae likely reinforce soils in a similar way to plant roots, with successful biomechanical measurements of these micron diameter structures achieved with micromechanical test frames. Extending root reinforcement models to fungi would not be a straightforward exercise, however, as interparticle bonding and changes to pore water caused by fungal exudates could have a major impact on structure formation and stability. Biological exudates from fungi, bacteria or roots have been found to decrease surface tension and increase viscosity of pore water, with observed impacts to soil strength and water retention. Modelling approaches developed in granular mechanics and geotechnical engineering could be built upon to incorporate biological transformations of hydrological and mechanical properties of soil. With new testing approaches, adapted from materials science, pore scale hydromechanical impacts from biological exudates can be quantified. The research can be complemented with model organisms with differences in biological structures (e.g. root hair mutants), exudation or other properties. Coupled with technological advances that provide 4D imaging of soil structure at relatively rapid capture rates, the potential opportunities to disentangle and model how biology drives soil structure evolution and stability are vast. By quantifying basic soil hydrological and mechanical processes that are driven by soil biology, unknown unknowns may also emerge, providing new insight into how soils function.

  19. Nitrogen fixation in biological soil crusts from southeast Utah, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.

    2002-01-01

    Biological soil crusts can be the dominant source of N for arid land ecosystems. We measured potential N fixation rates biweekly for 2 years, using three types of soil crusts: (1) crusts whose directly counted cells were >98% Microcoleus vaginatus (light crusts); (2) crusts dominated by M. vaginatus, but with 20% or more of the directly counted cells represented by Nostoc commune and Scytonema myochrous (dark crusts); and (3) the soil lichen Collema sp. At all observation times, Collema had higher nitrogenase activity (NA) than dark crusts, which had higher NA than light crusts, indicating that species composition is critical when estimating N inputs. In addition, all three types of crusts generally responded in a similar fashion to climate conditions. Without precipitation within a week of collection, no NA was recorded, regardless of other conditions being favorable. Low (26??C) temperatures precluded NA, even if soils were moist. If rain or snow melt had occurred 3 or less days before collection, NA levels were highly correlated with daily average temperatures of the previous 3 days (r2=0.93 for Collema crusts; r2=0.86 for dark crusts and r2=0.83 for light crusts) for temperatures between 1??C and 26??C. If a precipitation event followed a long dry period, NA levels were lower than if collection followed a time when soils were wet for extended periods (e.g., winter). Using a combination of data from a recording weather datalogger, time-domain reflectometry, manual dry-down curves, and N fixation rates at different temperatures, annual N input from the different crust types was estimated. Annual N input from dark crusts found at relatively undisturbed sites was estimated at 9 kg ha-1 year-1. With 20% cover of the N-fixing soil lichen Collema, inputs are estimated at 13 kg ha-1 year-1. N input from light crusts, generally indicating soil surface disturbance, was estimated at 1.4 kg ha-1 year-1. The rates in light crusts are expected to be highly variable, as disturbance history will determine cyanobacterial biomass and therefore N fixation rates.

  20. Effects of transgenic Bt cotton on soil fertility and biology under field conditions in subtropical inceptisol.

    PubMed

    Singh, Raman Jeet; Ahlawat, I P S; Singh, Surender

    2013-01-01

    Although there is large-scale adoption of Bt cotton by the farmers because of immediate financial gain, there is concern that Bt crops release Bt toxins into the soil environment which reduces soil chemical and biological activities. However, the majorities of such studies were mainly performed under pot experiments, relatively little research has examined the direct and indirect effects of associated cover crop of peanut with fertilization by combined application of organic and inorganic sources of nitrogen under field conditions. We compared soil chemical and biological parameters of Bt cotton with pure crop of peanut to arrive on a valid conclusion. Significantly higher dehydrogenase enzyme activity and KMnO(4)-N content of soil were observed in Bt cotton with cover crop of peanut over pure Bt cotton followed by pure peanut at all the crop growth stages. However, higher microbial population was maintained by pure peanut over intercropped Bt cotton, but these differences were related to the presence of high amount of KMnO(4)-N content of soil. By growing cover crop of peanut between Bt cotton rows, bacteria, fungi, and actinomycetes population increased by 60%, 14%, and 10%, respectively, over Bt cotton alone. Bt cotton fertilized by combined application of urea and farm yard manure (FYM) maintained higher dehydrogenase enzyme activity, KMnO(4)-N content of soil and microbial population over urea alone. Significant positive correlations were observed for dry matter accumulation, dehydrogenase enzyme activity, KMnO(4)-N content, and microbial population of soil of Bt cotton, which indicates no harmful effects of Bt cotton on soil biological parameters and associated cover crop. Our results suggest that inclusion of cover crop of peanut and FYM in Bt cotton enhanced soil chemical and biological parameters which can mask any negative effect of the Bt toxin on microbial activity and thus on enzymatic activities. PMID:22350447

  1. Behaviour of oxyfluorfen in soils amended with edaphic biostimulants/biofertilizers obtained from sewage sludge and chicken feathers. Effects on soil biological properties.

    PubMed

    Rodrguez-Morgado, Bruno; Gmez, Isidoro; Parrado, Juan; Tejada, Manuel

    2014-09-01

    We studied the behaviour of oxyfluorfen herbicide at a rate of 4 l ha(-1) on biological properties of a Calcaric Regosol amended with two edaphic biostimulants/biofertilizers (SS, derived from sewage sludge; and CF, derived from chicken feathers). Oxyfluorfen was surface broadcast on 11 March 2013. Two days after application of oxyfluorfen to soil, both biostimulants/biofertilizers (BS) were also applied to the soil. An unamended soil without oxyfluorfen was used as control. For 2, 4, 7, 9, 20, 30, 60, 90 and 120 days of the application of herbicide to the soil and for each treatment, the soil dehydrogenase, urease, ?-glucosidase and phosphatase activities were measured. For 2, 7, 30 and 120 days of the application of herbicide to the soil and for each treatment, soil microbial community was determined. The application of both BS to soil without the herbicide increased the enzymatic activities and soil biodiversity, mainly at 7 days of beginning the experiment. However, this stimulation was higher in the soil amended with SS than for CF. The application of herbicide in organic-amended soils decreased the inhibition of soil enzymatic activities and soil biodiversity. Possibly, the low-molecular-weight protein content easily assimilated by soil microorganisms is responsible for less inhibition of these soil biological properties. PMID:24859703

  2. Mind the gap: non-biological processes contributing to soil CO2 efflux.

    PubMed

    Rey, Ana

    2015-05-01

    Widespread recognition of the importance of soil CO2 efflux as a major source of CO2 to the atmosphere has led to active research. A large soil respiration database and recent reviews have compiled data, methods, and current challenges. This study highlights some deficiencies for a proper understanding of soil CO2 efflux focusing on processes of soil CO2 production and transport that have not received enough attention in the current soil respiration literature. It has mostly been assumed that soil CO2 efflux is the result of biological processes (i.e. soil respiration), but recent studies demonstrate that pedochemical and geological processes, such as geothermal and volcanic CO2 degassing, are potentially important in some areas. Besides the microbial decomposition of litter, solar radiation is responsible for photodegradation or photochemical degradation of litter. Diffusion is considered to be the main mechanism of CO2 transport in the soil, but changes in atmospheric pressure and thermal convection may also be important mechanisms driving soil CO2 efflux greater than diffusion under certain conditions. Lateral fluxes of carbon as dissolved organic and inorganic carbon occur and may cause an underestimation of soil CO2 efflux. Traditionally soil CO2 efflux has been measured with accumulation chambers assuming that the main transport mechanism is diffusion. New techniques are available such as improved automated chambers, CO2 concentration profiles and isotopic techniques that may help to elucidate the sources of carbon from soils. We need to develop specific and standardized methods for different CO2 sources to quantify this flux on a global scale. Biogeochemical models should include biological and non-biological CO2 production processes before we can predict the response of soil CO2 efflux to climate change. Improving our understanding of the processes involved in soil CO2 efflux should be a research priority given the importance of this flux in the global carbon budget. PMID:25471988

  3. The influence of carbonates in parent rocks on the biological properties of mountain soils of the Northwest Caucasus region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazeev, K. Sh.; Kutrovskii, M. A.; Dadenko, E. V.; Vezdeneeva, L. S.; Kolesnikov, S. I.; Val'kov, V. F.

    2012-03-01

    The biological activity of different subtypes of soddy-calcareous soils (rendzinas) of the Northwest Caucasus region was studied. In the Novorossiisk-Abrau-Dyurso region (dry subtropics), typical soddy-calcareous soils with the high content of carbonates predominate; in the more humid conditions of the Lagonaki Plateau (Republic of Adygeya), leached soddy-calcareous soils carbonate-free down to the parent rock are spread. The number of microarthropods, the populations of fungi and bacteria, and the enzyme activity (catalase, dehydrogenase, and invertase) testify that the biological activity of these soils significantly differs. In the typical soddy-calcareous soils of the dry subtropics, the content of carbonates does not affect the characteristics mentioned; in the more humid conditions of the West Caucasus region, the presence of carbonates in the parent rocks intensifies the biological activity of the soddy-calcareous soils.

  4. Molecular characteristics versus biological activity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Applegate, Vernon C.; Smith, Manning A.; Willeford, Bennett R.

    1967-01-01

    The molecular characteristics of mononitrophenols containing halogens not only play a key role in their biological activity but provide a novel example of selective toxicity among vertebrate animals. It has been reported that efforts to control the parasitic sea lamprey in the Great Lakes are directed at present to the applications of a selective toxicant to streams inhabited by lamprey larvae. Since 1961, the larvicide that has been used almost exclusively in the control program has been 3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenol (TFM). However, this is only one of about 15 closely related compounds, all halogen-containing mononitrophenols, that display a selectively toxic action upon lampreys. Although not all of the halogenated mononitrophenols are selectively toxic to lampreys (in fact, fewer than half of those tested), no other group of related compounds has displayed any useful larvicidal activity except for the substituted nitrosalicylanilides.

  5. Soil biology and carbon in dryland agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The goal of this paper is to explore potential management strategies in dryland agriculture that can promote soil health and crop productivity. Traditional crop production in the semiarid Great Plains consists of conventional tillage management of winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) - summer fallow....

  6. EFFECTS OF A BIOLOGICAL AMENDMENT ON CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL PROPERTIES AND MICROBIAL DIVERSITY IN SOILS RECEIVING DIFFERENT ORGANIC AMENDMENTS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biological fertilizers consisting of suspensions of selected microorganisms are often used in conjunction with various organic materials for amending soils to improve soil quality and plant growth. The effects of a biological fertilizer on chemical and biological properties of soil were investigated...

  7. Molecular microbial biodiversity assessment: a biological indicator of soil health.

    PubMed

    Alkorta, Itziar; Amezaga, Ibone; Albizu, Isabel; Aizpurua, Ana; Onaindia, Miren; Buchner, Virginia; Garbisu, Carlos

    2003-01-01

    The soil performs a variety of key functions: (i) provides the food, fuel, and fiber needs of the world's population, (ii) regulates the quality of the air and water, (iii) decomposes organic wastes, (iv) recycles nutrients, and (v) acts as a sink for pollutants (including global gases). Soil degradation is increasingly recognized as an urgent environmental issue and a crucial need exists for the capacity to evaluate soil health. After all, soil health is a key component in sustaining the different world's ecosystems and the myriad of natural and socioeconomic systems they support. In this respect, soil health has been defined as the "continued capacity of a specific kind of soil to function as a vital living system, within natural or managed ecosystem boundaries, to sustain plant and animal productivity, to maintain or enhance the quality of air and water environments, and to support human health and habitation". A biological indicator is an organism, a part of an organism, or a community of organisms, used to obtain information about environmental quality. The assessment of microbial biodiversity has the potential to provide useful insight into the health and functioning of soil. Our inability to culture most microorganisms that are present in soils has, until recently, impaired studying the relationships between the structure and the function of soil microbial communities. This shortcoming has been recently overcome by using several molecular techniques that allow the detection, enumeration, and characterization of soil microorganisms without cultivation. PMID:14531477

  8. Warming and increased precipitation frequency on the Colorado Plateau: implications for biological soil crusts and soil processes

    SciTech Connect

    Zelikova TJ; Housman DC; Grote EE; Neher DA; Belnap J

    2012-01-01

    Changes in temperature and precipitation are expected to influence ecosystem processes worldwide. Despite their globally large extent, few studies to date have examined the effects of climate change in desert ecosystems, where biological soil crusts are key nutrient cycling components. The goal of this work was to assess how increased temperature and frequency of summertime precipitation affect the contributions of crust organisms to soil processes. With a combination of experimental 2°C warming and altered summer precipitation frequency applied over 2 years, we measured soil nutrient cycling and the structure and function of crust communities. We saw no change in crust cover, composition, or other measures of crust function in response to 2°C warming and no effects on any measure of soil chemistry. In contrast, crust cover and function responded to increased frequency of summer precipitation, shifting from moss to cyanobacteria-dominated crusts; however, in the short timeframe we measured, there was no accompanying change in soil chemistry. Total bacterial and fungal biomass was also reduced in watered plots, while the activity of two enzymes increased, indicating a functional change in the microbial community. Taken together, our results highlight the limited effects of warming alone on biological soil crust communities and soil chemistry, but demonstrate the substantially larger effects of altered summertime precipitation.

  9. Response of soil microbial activity and biodiversity in soils polluted with different concentrations of cypermethrin insecticide.

    PubMed

    Tejada, Manuel; García, Carlos; Hernández, Teresa; Gómez, Isidoro

    2015-07-01

    We performed a laboratory study into the effect of cypermethrin insecticide applied to different concentrations on biological properties in two soils [Typic Xerofluvent (soil A) and Xerollic Calciorthid (soil B)]. Two kg of each soil were polluted with cypermethrin at a rate of 60, 300, 600, and 1,200 g ha(-1) (C1, C2, C3, and C4 treatments). A nonpolluted soil was used as a control (C0 treatment). For all treatments and each experimental soil, soil dehydrogenase, urease, β-glucosidase, phosphatase, and arylsulphatase activities and soil microbial community were analysed by phospholipid fatty acids, which were measured at six incubation times (3, 7, 15, 30, 60, and 90 days). The behavior of the enzymatic activities and microbial population were dependent on the dose of insecticide applied to the soil. Compared with the C0 treatment, in soil A, the maximum inhibition of the enzymatic activities was at 15, 30, 45, and 90 days for the C1, C2, C3, and C4 treatments, respectively. However, in soil B, the maximum inhibition occurred at 7, 15, 30, and 45 days for the C1, C2, C3, and C4 treatments, respectively. These results suggest that the cypermethrin insecticide caused a negative effect on soil enzymatic activities and microbial diversity. This negative impact was greater when a greater dose of insecticide was used; this impact was also greater in soil with lower organic matter content. For both soils, and from these respective days onward, the enzymatic activities and microbial populations progressively increased by the end of the experimental period. This is possibly due to the fact that the insecticide or its breakdown products and killed microbial cells, subsequently killed by the insecticide, are being used as a source of energy or as a carbon source for the surviving microorganisms for cell proliferation. PMID:25604921

  10. Relevance of ammonium oxidation within biological soil crust communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, S.L.; Budinoff, C.R.; Belnap, J.; Garcia-Pichel, F.

    2005-01-01

    Thin, vertically structured topsoil communities that become ecologically important in arid regions (biological soil crusts or BSCs) are responsible for much of the nitrogen inputs into pristine arid lands. We studied N2 fixation and ammonium oxidation (AO) at subcentimetre resolution within BSCs from the Colorado Plateau. Pools of dissolved porewater nitrate/ nitrite, ammonium and organic nitrogen in wetted BSCs were high in comparison with those typical of aridosoils. They remained stable during incubations, indicating that input and output processes were of similar magnitude. Areal N2 fixation rates (6.5-48 ??mol C2H2 m-2 h -1) were high, the vertical distribution of N2 fixation peaking close to the surface if populations of heterocystous cyanobacteria were present, but in the subsurface if they were absent. Areal AO rates (19-46 ??mol N m-2 h-1) were commensurate with N2 fixation inputs. When considering oxygen availability, AO activity invariably peaked 2-3 mm deep and was limited by oxygen (not ammonium) supply. Most probable number (MPN)-enumerated ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (6.7-7.9 ?? 103 cells g-1 on average) clearly peaked at 2-3 mm depth. Thus, AO (hence nitrification) is a spatially restricted but important process in the nitrogen cycling of BSC, turning much of the biologically fixed nitrogen into oxidized forms, the fate of which remains to be determined.

  11. Characterization of Soil Samples of Enzyme Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Freeland, P. W.

    1977-01-01

    Described are nine enzyme essays for distinguishing soil samples. Colorimetric methods are used to compare enzyme levels in soils from different sites. Each soil tested had its own spectrum of activity. Attention is drawn to applications of this technique in forensic science and in studies of soil fertility. (Author/AJ)

  12. Evaluation of the efficiency of a phytostabilization process with biological indicators of soil health.

    PubMed

    Epelde, Lur; Becerril, Jos M; Mijangos, Iker; Garbisu, Carlos

    2009-01-01

    A phytostabilization process that combined the addition of a synthetic (Calcinit + urea + PK14% + calcium carbonate) or organic (cow slurry) amendment with Lolium perenne L. growth was used to remediate a mine soil moderately contaminated with Zn, Pb, and Cd. The reduced toxicity caused by both amendments allowed the establishment of a healthy L. perenne vegetation cover that had a positive influence on soil properties, increasing the biomass, activity, and functional diversity of the soil microbial community. The beneficial effects of phytostabilization on soil properties were more accentuated in organically amended than in synthetically amended soils. Root-to-shoot translocation factors were smaller in amended versus control plants, indicating a reduction in the risk of metals entering the food chain through phytostabilization. The sensitivity, rapid response, and integrative character of biological indicators of soil health make them valuable tools for assessing the efficiency of metal phytostabilization processes. PMID:19704147

  13. Diversity and Activity of Denitrifiers of Chilean Arid Soil Ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Orlando, Julieta; Car, Margarita; Pommerenke, Bianca; Braker, Gesche

    2012-01-01

    The Chilean sclerophyllous matorral is a Mediterranean semiarid ecosystem affected by erosion, with low soil fertility, and limited by nitrogen. However, limitation of resources is even more severe for desert soils such as from the Atacama Desert, one of the most extreme arid deserts on Earth. Topsoil organic matter, nitrogen and moisture content were significantly higher in the semiarid soil compared to the desert soil. Although the most significant loss of biologically preferred nitrogen from terrestrial ecosystems occurs via denitrification, virtually nothing is known on the activity and composition of denitrifier communities thriving in arid soils. In this study we explored denitrifier communities from two soils with profoundly distinct edaphic factors. While denitrification activity in the desert soil was below detection limit, the semiarid soil sustained denitrification activity. To elucidate the genetic potential of the soils to sustain denitrification processes we performed community analysis of denitrifiers based on nitrite reductase (nirK and nirS) genes as functional marker genes for this physiological group. Presence of nirK-type denitrifiers in both soils was demonstrated but failure to amplify nirS from the desert soil suggests very low abundance of nirS-type denitrifiers shedding light on the lack of denitrification activity. Phylogenetic analysis showed a very low diversity of nirK with only three distinct genotypes in the desert soil which conditions presumably exert a high selection pressure. While nirK diversity was also limited to only few, albeit distinct genotypes, the semiarid matorral soil showed a surprisingly broad genetic variability of the nirS gene. The Chilean matorral is a shrub land plant community which form vegetational patches stabilizing the soil and increasing its nitrogen and carbon content. These islands of fertility may sustain the development and activity of the overall microbial community and of denitrifiers in particular. PMID:22493591

  14. Short-term effects of different organic amendments on soil chemical, biochemical and biological indicators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mondelli, Donato; Aly, Adel; Yirga Dagnachew, Ababu; Piscitelli, Lea; Dumontet, Stefano; Miano, Teodoro

    2014-05-01

    The limited availability of animal manure and the high cost of good quality compost lead to difficult soil quality management under organic agriculture. Therefore, it is important to find out alternative organic soil amendments and more flexible strategies that are able to sustain crop productivity and maintain and enhance soil quality. A three years study was carried out in the experimental fields of the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Bari located in Valenzano, Italy. The main objective of this research is to investigate the effects of different fertility management strategies on soil quality in order to estimate the role of innovative matrices for their use in organic farming. The experiment consists of seven treatments applied to a common crop rotation. The treatments include alternative organic amendments (1- olive mill wastewater OMW, 2- residues of mushroom cultivation MUS, 3- coffee chaff COF), common soil amendments (4- compost COM, 5- faba bean intercropping LEG, 6- cow manure - MAN) and as a reference treatment (7- mineral fertilizer COV). The soil quality was assessed before and after the application of the treatments, through biological (microbial biomass carbon and nitrogen, soil respiration and metabolic quotient), biochemical (soil enzymatic activities: β-glucosidase, alkaline phospatase, urease, fluorescein diacetate (FDA) hydrolysis), and chemical (pH, soil organic carbon, soil organic matter, total nitrogen, available phosphorous, exchangeable potassium, dissolved organic carbon and total dissolved nitrogen) indicators. Based on the results obtained after the second year, all treatments were able to improve various soil chemical parameters as compared to mineral fertilizer. The incorporation of COF and OMW seemed to be more effective in improving soil total N and exchangeable K, while MAN significantly increased available P. All the amendments enhance dissolved organic C, soil respiration, microbial biomass and metabolic quotient as compared to control soil. Results concerning biochemical indicators revealed that phosphatase and β-glycosidase were significantly reduced, while activities of urease and FDA were improved in all amended plots in comparison to the control, regardless of amendment type. Data demonstrated the efficiency, the high sensitivity and a quick response of the biochemical indicators in assessing soil quality changes. As a conclusion, it is possible to emphasize that alternative and common soil organic amendments behave similarly in enhancing the chemical, biochemical and biological properties. The alternative soil organic amendments could, then, be candidates for substituting some commonly used one which are currently showing shortage in their supply and a lowering in their quality. Keywords: Organic agriculture, Soil quality, Enzymatic activities, Olive mill wastewater, Residues of mushroom cultivation, Coffee chaff.

  15. [Relationships between soil nutrients and rhizospheric soil microbial communities and enzyme activities in a maize-capsicum intercropping system].

    PubMed

    Xu, Qiang; Cheng, Zhi-Hui; Meng, Huan-Wen; Zhang, Yu

    2007-12-01

    By using plastic sheet and nylon mesh to partition the root systems of maize and capsicum in a maize-capsicum intercropping system, this paper studied the relationships between soil biological factors and nutritive status in the intercropping system, with no partitioning and maize monoculture and capsicum monoculture as the control. The results showed that intercropping maize and capsicum had its high superiority. In the treatments of no partitioning and nylon mesh portioning in the intercropping system, soil enzyme activities, microbial individuals and nutrient contents were significantly higher, compared with those in the treatments of nylon mesh partitioning and monocultures. All kinds of soil available nutrients showed significant or very significant positive correlations with soil biological factors, except that soil available Mg was negatively correlated with soil fungi and catalase activity. Pathway analysis indicated that in the intercropping system, soil urease, catalase, protease, and bacteria were the main factors affecting the accumulation of soil organic matter, saccharase was the most important factor affecting soil alkali-hydrolyzable N, urease was the most important factor affecting soil available P, and bacteria largely determined soil available K. Soil alkaline phosphatase and fungi selectively affected the accumulation of soil organic matter and available N, P and K. There was a slight negative correlation between soil actinomycetes and soil nutrients, suggesting that actinomycetes had little effect on soil nutrient formation. PMID:18333449

  16. The role of biological soil crusts in soil moisture dynamics in two semiarid ecosystems with contrasting soil textures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamizo, Sonia; Cantn, Yolanda; Lzaro, Roberto; Domingo, Francisco

    2013-05-01

    The interplant soil surfaces in most arid and semiarid ecosystems are covered by biological soil crusts (BSCs). These crusts regulate water inputs and losses through soils and play major roles in local hydrological regimes. In recent years, the role of BSCs in infiltration and runoff has gained increasing importance and better knowledge of their effects on these processes has been acquired. However, the role of BSCs in other important components of the water balance, such as evaporation or soil moisture has hardly been studied, so their effects on these processes remain unknown. The aim of this study was to explore the influence of BSCs on soil moisture regimes in the top layer of the soil in two semiarid ecosystems in SE Spain with different particle-size distributions. At both study sites, soil moisture was monitored at 0.03 and 0.10 m under two types of BSCs, a cyanobacteria-dominated BSC and a lichen-dominated BSC, and in adjacent soils where they had been removed. Our results showed that during wet soil periods, removal of BSCs led to decreased soil moisture, especially in the upper layer (0.03 m), compared to soils covered by BSCs. Decrease in soil moisture was more noticeable after removal of lichens than cyanobacterial BSCs, and more so in fine than in coarse-textured soils. Soil water loss was also generally faster in soils with no BSCs than in soils covered by them. However, no difference was found in soil moisture under either crusted or scalped soils during soil drying periods. The type of BSC influenced soil moisture differently depending on soil water content. During wet soil periods, soil water loss was faster and soil moisture lower under cyanobacterial than under lichen BSCs. On the contrary, during soil drying periods, soils covered by lichens lost water faster and showed lower moisture than those covered by cyanobacteria. Our results show the major role of the presence of BSCs, as well as the types, in soil water content in semiarid ecosystems.

  17. Influence of Disturbance on Soil Respiration in Biologically Crusted Soil during the Dry Season

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Wei; Zhang, Yu-qing; Wu, Bin; Zha, Tian-shan; Jia, Xin; Qin, Shu-gao; Shao, Chen-xi; Liu, Jia-bin; Lai, Zong-rui; Fa, Ke-yu

    2013-01-01

    Soil respiration (Rs) is a major pathway for carbon cycling and is a complex process involving abiotic and biotic factors. Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are a key biotic component of desert ecosystems worldwide. In desert ecosystems, soils are protected from surface disturbance by BSCs, but it is unknown whether Rs is affected by disturbance of this crust layer. We measured Rs in three types of disturbed and undisturbed crusted soils (algae, lichen, and moss), as well as bare land from April to August, 2010, in Mu Us desert, northwest China. Rs was similar among undisturbed soils but increased significantly in disturbed moss and algae crusted soils. The variation of Rs in undisturbed and disturbed soil was related to soil bulk density. Disturbance also led to changes in soil organic carbon and fine particles contents, including declines of 60–70% in surface soil C and N, relative to predisturbance values. Once BSCs were disturbed, Q10 increased. Our findings indicate that a loss of BSCs cover will lead to greater soil C loss through respiration. Given these results, understanding the disturbance sensitivity impact on Rs could be helpful to modify soil management practices which promote carbon sequestration. PMID:24453845

  18. Influence of disturbance on soil respiration in biologically crusted soil during the dry season.

    PubMed

    Feng, Wei; Zhang, Yu-qing; Wu, Bin; Zha, Tian-shan; Jia, Xin; Qin, Shu-gao; Shao, Chen-xi; Liu, Jia-bin; Lai, Zong-rui; Fa, Ke-yu

    2013-01-01

    Soil respiration (Rs) is a major pathway for carbon cycling and is a complex process involving abiotic and biotic factors. Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are a key biotic component of desert ecosystems worldwide. In desert ecosystems, soils are protected from surface disturbance by BSCs, but it is unknown whether Rs is affected by disturbance of this crust layer. We measured Rs in three types of disturbed and undisturbed crusted soils (algae, lichen, and moss), as well as bare land from April to August, 2010, in Mu Us desert, northwest China. Rs was similar among undisturbed soils but increased significantly in disturbed moss and algae crusted soils. The variation of Rs in undisturbed and disturbed soil was related to soil bulk density. Disturbance also led to changes in soil organic carbon and fine particles contents, including declines of 60-70% in surface soil C and N, relative to predisturbance values. Once BSCs were disturbed, Q 10 increased. Our findings indicate that a loss of BSCs cover will lead to greater soil C loss through respiration. Given these results, understanding the disturbance sensitivity impact on Rs could be helpful to modify soil management practices which promote carbon sequestration. PMID:24453845

  19. Effects of different green manures on soil biological properties and maize yield.

    PubMed

    Tejada, M; Gonzalez, J L; Garca-Martnez, A M; Parrado, J

    2008-04-01

    The utilization of green manures as alternatives to reduce the use of mineral fertilizers is considered a good agricultural practice. However, the effect of each green manure on soil properties and crop yield depends upon its chemical composition. The main objective of this work was to study the effect of incorporating three green manures originating from residues of Trifolium pratense, L. (TP), Brassica napus, L. (BN), and the mixture of TP+BN at rates of 5384 and 8973 kg C ha(-1), on soil biological properties (soil microbial biomass-C, soil respiration and soil enzymatic activities), nutrition (leaf N, P and K concentration, pigments and soluble carbohydrate concentrations) and yield parameters of maize (Zea mays cv. Tundra) crop for four years on an Typic Xerofluvent located near Sevilla (Guadalquivir Valley, Andalusia, Spain). All green manures had a positive effect on the soil biological properties, plant nutrition an crop yield parameters, although at the end of the experimental period and at the high organic matter rate, the soil microbial biomass and dehydrogenase, urease, beta-glucosidase, phosphatase and arylsulfatase activities increased more significantly in the TP amended soils (79.2%, 92.1%, 93.9%, 99.3%, 87.9% and 96%, respectively) respect to the control soil, followed by TP+BN amended soils (77.3%, 90.9%, 92.8%, 99.1%, 84.4% and 95.7%, respectively) and BN amended soils (76%, 90.1%, 91.7%, 99%, 83.2% and 95.2%, respectively). Since these soil enzymatic activities measured are responsible for important cycles such as C, N, P and S, an increase of leaf N, P an K contents and pigments and soluble carbohydrate contents were highest in TP amended soils, followed by TP+BN and BN treatments. The application of TP in soils at high doses increased the grain protein concentration, number of grains corncob(-1) and crop yield 44.6%, 6.3% and 22.1%, respectively, compared with the control soil, followed by TP+BN treatment (41.7%, 5.7% and 20.8%, respectively) and BN treatment (39%, 5.3% and 20%, respectively). The explanation of these results can be a consequence to the different chemical composition of the green manures applied to the soils and its mineralization, aspect controlled by the soil C/N ratio. PMID:17512725

  20. Spatial Pattern of Biological Soil Crust with Fractal Geometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ospina, Abelardo; Florentino, Adriana; Tarquis, Ana M.

    2015-04-01

    Soil surface characteristics are subjected to changes driven by several interactions between water, air, biotic and abiotic components. One of the examples of such interactions is provided through biological soil crusts (BSC) in arid and semi-arid environments. BSC are communities composed of cyanobacteria, fungi, mosses, lichens, algae and liverworts covering the soil surface and play an important role in ecosystem functioning. The characteristics and formation of these BSC influence the soil hydrological balance, control the mass of eroded sediment, increase stability of soil surface, and influence plant productivity through the modification of nitrogen and carbon cycle. This study focus on characterize the spatial arrangements of the BSC based on image analysis and fractal concepts. To this end, RGB images of different types of biological soil crust where taken, each image corresponding to an area of 3.6 cm2 with a resolution of 1024x1024 pixels. For each image and channel, mass dimension and entropy were calculated. Preliminary results indicate that fractal methods are useful to describe changes associated to different types of BSC. Further research is necessary to apply these methodologies to several situations.

  1. Environmental implications of herbicide resistance: soil biology and ecology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil microbial community structure and activity are clearly linked to plant communities established in natural and agricultural ecosystems. A limited number of studies confirm that weeds alter their soil environment and select for specific microbial communities in the rhizosphere. Such rhizosphere m...

  2. Biochar and biological carbon cycling in temperate soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McCormack, S. A.; Vanbergen, A. J.; Bardgett, R. D.; Hopkins, D. W.; Ostle, N.

    2012-04-01

    Production of biochar, the recalcitrant residue formed by pyrolysis of plant matter, is suggested as a means of increasing storage of stable carbon (C) in the soil (1). Biochar has also been shown to act as a soil conditioner, increasing the productivity of certain crops by reducing nutrient leaching and improving soil water-holding capacity. However, the response of soil carbon pools to biochar addition is not yet well understood. Studies have shown that biochar has highly variable effects on microbial C cycling and thus on soil C storage (2,3,4). This discrepancy may be partially explained by the response of soil invertebrates, which occupy higher trophic levels and regulate microbial activity. This research aims to understand the role of soil invertebrates (i.e. Collembola and nematode worms) in biochar-mediated changes to soil C dynamics across a range of plant-soil communities. An open-air, pot-based mesocosm experiment was established in May, 2011 at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Edinburgh. Three treatments were included in a fully-factorial design: biochar (presence [2 % w/w] or absence), soil type (arable sandy, arable sandy loam, grassland sandy loam), and vegetation type (Hordeum vulgare, Lolium perenne, unvegetated). Monitored parameters include: invertebrate and microbial species composition, soil C fluxes (CO2 and trace gas evolution, leachate C content, primary productivity and soil C content), and soil conditions (pH, moisture content and water-holding capacity). Preliminary results indicate that biochar-induced changes to soil invertebrate communities and processes are affected by pre-existing soil characteristics, and that soil texture in particular may be an important determinant of soil response to biochar addition. 1. Lehmann, 2007. A handful of carbon. Nature 447, 143-144. 2. Liang et al., 2010. Black carbon affects the cycling of non-black carbon in soil. Organic Geochemistry 41, 206-213. 3. Van Zwieten et al., 2010. Influence of biochars on flux of N2O and CO2 from Ferrosol. Australian Journal of Soil Research, 48, 555-568. 4. Wardle et al., 2008. Fire-derived charcoal causes loss of forest humus. Science 320, 629.

  3. Photoregulation of biologically active macromolecules.

    PubMed

    Erlanger, B F

    1976-01-01

    A broad view is given of photoregulated processes as they occur in algae, fungi, halophilic bacteria, higher plants, invertebrates, and higher animals. Emphasis is on the following: the organs, tissues, and organelles that participate; the nature of the photoreceptor pigments; the light-induced structural changes that occur in the photopigments; and the way in which the photochemical events are believed to be translated into the physiological response. An attempt is made to show that there exist common biochemical attributes in all systems. In particular, they depend upon the ability of a low-molecular-weight to regulate a biologically active macromolecule, which may or may not be incorporated into a membrane. This is a common type of biochemical regulation and is, for example, the basis of allosterism. The additional refinement in photosensitive systems is the ability of light to alter the stereochemistry of the low-molecular-weight effector molecule and thus to modify its effect on the macromolecule. Model photosensitive systems are examined that incorporate control mechanisms that function in natural systems. For example, there are systems in which enzymes, normally insensitive to light, are made subject to photoregulation. In others, membrane permeability is rendered photoresponsive. A comparison of the model systems was processes found in nature permits the formulation of an hypothesis to explain how naturally occurring photoresponsive systems might have evolved. PMID:822780

  4. Concepts for Biologically Active Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Kastin, Abba J.; Pan, Weihong

    2012-01-01

    Here we review a unique aspect of CNS research on biologically active peptides that started against a background of prevalent dogmas but ended by exerting considerable influence on the field. During the course of refuting some doctrines, we introduced several concepts that were unconventional and paradigm-shifting at the time. We showed that (1) hypothalamic peptides can act ‘up’ on the brain as well as ‘down’ on the pituitary, (2) peripheral peptides can affect the brain, (3) peptides can cross the blood-brain barrier, (4) the actions of peptides can persist longer than their half-lives in blood, (5) perinatal administration of peptides can exert actions persisting into adulthood, (6) a single peptide can have more than one action, (7) dose-response relationships of peptides need not be linear, (8) the brain produces antiopiate as well as opiate peptides, (9) there is a selective high affinity endogenous peptide ligand for the mu-opiate receptor, (10) a peptide’s name does not restrict its effects, and (11) astrocytes assume an active role in response to metabolic disturbance and hyperleptinemia. The evolving questions in our laboratories reflect the diligent effort of the neuropeptide community to identify the roles of peptides in the CNS. The next decade is expected to see greater progress in the following areas: (a) interactions of peptides with other molecules in the CNS; (b) peptide involvement in cell-cell interactions; and (c) peptides in neuropsychiatric, autoimmune, and neurodegenerative diseases. The development of peptidomics and gene silencing approaches will expedite the formation of many new concepts in a new era. PMID:20726835

  5. A review exploring biological activities of hydrazones

    PubMed Central

    Verma, Garima; Marella, Akranth; Shaquiquzzaman, Mohammad; Akhtar, Mymoona; Ali, Mohammad Rahmat; Alam, Mohammad Mumtaz

    2014-01-01

    The development of novel compounds, hydrazones has shown that they possess a wide variety of biological activities viz. antimicrobial, anticonvulsant, antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antiplatelet, antimalarial, anticancer, antifungal, antitubercular, antiviral, cardio protective etc., Hydrazones/azomethines/imines possess-NHN = CH- and constitute an important class of compounds for new drug development. A number of researchers have synthesized and evaluated the biological activities of hydrazones. This review aims at highlighting the diverse biological activities of hydrazones. PMID:24741273

  6. Impact of biological soil crusts and desert plants on soil microfaunal community composition

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Darby, B.J.; Neher, D.A.; Belnap, J.

    2010-01-01

    Carbon and nitrogen are supplied by a variety of sources in the desert food web; both vascular and non-vascular plants and cyanobacteria supply carbon, and cyanobacteria and plant-associated rhizosphere bacteria are sources of biological nitrogen fixation. The objective of this study was to compare the relative influence of vascular plants and biological soil crusts on desert soil nematode and protozoan abundance and community composition. In the first experiment, biological soil crusts were removed by physical trampling. Treatments with crust removed had fewer nematodes and a greater relative ratio of bacterivores to microphytophages than treatments with intact crust. However, protozoa composition was similar with or without the presence of crusts. In a second experiment, nematode community composition was characterized along a spatial gradient away from stems of grasses or shrubs. Although nematodes generally occurred in increasing abundance nearer to plant stems, some genera (such as the enrichment-type Panagrolaimus) increased disproportionately more than others (such as the stress-tolerant Acromoldavicus). We propose that the impact of biological soil crusts and desert plants on soil microfauna, as reflected in the community composition of microbivorous nematodes, is a combination of carbon input, microclimate amelioration, and altered soil hydrology. ?? Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2009.

  7. Biological Soil Crusts: Webs of Life in the Desert

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, Jayne

    2001-01-01

    Although the soil surface may look like dirt to you, it is full of living organisms that are a vital part of desert ecosystems. This veneer of life is called a biological soil crust. These crusts are found throughout the world, from hot deserts to polar regions. Crusts generally cover all soil spaces not occupied by green plants. In many areas, they comprise over 70% of the living ground cover and are key in reducing erosion, increasing water retention, and increasing soil fertility. In most dry regions, these crusts are dominated by cyanobacteria (previously called blue-green algae), which are one of the oldest known life forms. Communities of soil crusts also include lichens, mosses, microfungi, bacteria, and green algae. These living organisms and their by-products create a continuous crust on the soil surface. The general color, surface appearance, and amount of coverage of these crusts vary depending on climate and disturbance patterns. Immature crusts are generally flat and the color of the soil, which makes them difficult to distinguish from bare ground. Mature crusts, in contrast, are usually bumpy and dark-colored due to the presence of lichens, mosses, and high densities of cyanobacteria and other organisms.

  8. Biological indicators capable of assessing thermal treatment efficiency of hydrocarbon mixture-contaminated soil.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jiangang; Zhan, Xinhua; Zhou, Lixiang; Lin, Yusuo

    2010-08-01

    In China, there are many special sites for recycling and washing the used drums, which release a variety of C5-C40 hydrocarbon mixture into the soil around the site. The remediation of these contaminated sites by thermal treatment is adopted ubiquitously and needs to be assessed. Here we report the feasibility of biological indicators applied to assess thermal treatment efficiency in such contaminated soil. A series of biological indicators, including seed germination index (SGI), root elongation index (REI), plant growth height, biomass, carbon dioxide evolved (CDE), soil respiration inhibition (SRI) and soil enzymatic activities, were employed to monitor or assess hydrocarbon mixture removal in thermal treated soil. The results showed that residual hydrocarbon mixture content correlated strongly negatively with SGI for sesamum (Sesamum indicum L.), plant height, and biomass for ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) in the concentration ranges of 0-3990, 0-3170 and 0-2910 mg kg(-1), respectively. In contrast, REI for sesamum was positively correlated with residual hydrocarbon mixture content from 0 to 1860 mg kg(-1). In addition, both CDE and SRI demonstrated that 600 mg kg(-1) of residual hydrocarbon mixture content caused the highest amount of soil carbon dioxide emission and inhabitation of soil respiration. The results of soil enzymes indicated that 1000 mg kg(-1) of residual hydrocarbon mixture content was the threshold value of stimulating or inhibiting the activities of phosphatase and catalase, or completely destroying the activities of dehydrogenase, invertase, and urease. In conclusion, these biological indicators can be used as a meaningful complementation for traditional chemical content measurement in evaluating the environmental risk of the contaminated sites before and after thermal treatment. PMID:20598340

  9. Restoring the biological crust cover of soils across biomes in arid North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia-Pichel, Ferran; Antoninka, Anita; Bowker, Matthew; Giraldo Silva, Ana; Nelson, Corey; Velasco Ayuso, Sergio; Barger, Nichole; Belnap, Jayne; Reed, Sasha; Duniway, Michael

    2015-04-01

    Biological soil crust communities provide important ecosystem services to arid lands, particularly regarding soil fertility and stability against erosion. In North America, and in many other areas of the globe, increasingly intense human activities, ranging from cattle grazing to military training, have resulted in the significant deterioration of biological soil surface cover of soils. With the intent of attaining sustainable land use practices, we are conducting a 5-year, multi-institutional research effort to develop feasible soil crusts restoration strategies for US military lands. We are including field sites of varying climatic regions (warm and cold deserts, in the Chihuahuan Desert and in the Great Basin, respectively) and varying edaphic characteristics (sandy and silty soils in each). We have multiple aims. First, we aim to establishing effective "biocrust nurseries" that produce viable and pedigreed inoculum, as a supply center for biocrust restoration and for research and development. Second, we aim to develop optimal field application methods of biocrust inoculum in a series of field trials. Currently in our second year of research, we will be reporting on significant advances made on optimizing methodologies for the large-scale supply of inoculum based on a) pedigreed laboratory cultures that match the microbial community structure of the original sites, and b) "in soil" biomass enhancement, whereby small amounts of local crusts are nursed under greenhouse conditions to yield hundred-fold increases in biomass without altering significantly community structure. We will also report on field trials for methodologies in field application, which included shading, watering, application of chemical polymers, and soil surface roughening. In a soon-to-be-initiated effort we also aim to evaluate soil and plant responses to biocrust restoration with respect to plant community structure, soil fertility, and soil stability, in multi-factorial field experiments. An important part of the plan will be to construct effective channels for sharing challenges and solutions in biocrust restoration with military and federal land managers.

  10. Quantitative assessment on soil enzyme activities of heavy metal contaminated soils with various soil properties.

    PubMed

    Xian, Yu; Wang, Meie; Chen, Weiping

    2015-11-01

    Soil enzyme activities are greatly influenced by soil properties and could be significant indicators of heavy metal toxicity in soil for bioavailability assessment. Two groups of experiments were conducted to determine the joint effects of heavy metals and soil properties on soil enzyme activities. Results showed that arylsulfatase was the most sensitive soil enzyme and could be used as an indicator to study the enzymatic toxicity of heavy metals under various soil properties. Soil organic matter (SOM) was the dominant factor affecting the activity of arylsulfatase in soil. A quantitative model was derived to predict the changes of arylsulfatase activity with SOM content. When the soil organic matter content was less than the critical point A (1.05% in our study), the arylsulfatase activity dropped rapidly. When the soil organic matter content was greater than the critical point A, the arylsulfatase activity gradually rose to higher levels showing that instead of harm the soil microbial activities were enhanced. The SOM content needs to be over the critical point B (2.42% in our study) to protect its microbial community from harm due to the severe Pb pollution (500mgkg(-1) in our study). The quantitative model revealed the pattern of variation of enzymatic toxicity due to heavy metals under various SOM contents. The applicability of the model under wider soil properties need to be tested. The model however may provide a methodological basis for ecological risk assessment of heavy metals in soil. PMID:25585863

  11. Plant diversity increases soil microbial activity and soil carbon storage.

    PubMed

    Lange, Markus; Eisenhauer, Nico; Sierra, Carlos A; Bessler, Holger; Engels, Christoph; Griffiths, Robert I; Mellado-Vzquez, Perla G; Malik, Ashish A; Roy, Jacques; Scheu, Stefan; Steinbeiss, Sibylle; Thomson, Bruce C; Trumbore, Susan E; Gleixner, Gerd

    2015-01-01

    Plant diversity strongly influences ecosystem functions and services, such as soil carbon storage. However, the mechanisms underlying the positive plant diversity effects on soil carbon storage are poorly understood. We explored this relationship using long-term data from a grassland biodiversity experiment (The Jena Experiment) and radiocarbon ((14)C) modelling. Here we show that higher plant diversity increases rhizosphere carbon inputs into the microbial community resulting in both increased microbial activity and carbon storage. Increases in soil carbon were related to the enhanced accumulation of recently fixed carbon in high-diversity plots, while plant diversity had less pronounced effects on the decomposition rate of existing carbon. The present study shows that elevated carbon storage at high plant diversity is a direct function of the soil microbial community, indicating that the increase in carbon storage is mainly limited by the integration of new carbon into soil and less by the decomposition of existing soil carbon. PMID:25848862

  12. Ice nucleation activity in the widespread soil fungus Mortierella alpina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Hill, T. C. J.; Pummer, B. G.; Yordanova, P.; Franc, G. D.; Pschl, U.

    2015-02-01

    Biological residues in soil dust are a potentially strong source of atmospheric ice nuclei (IN). So far, however, the abundance, diversity, sources, seasonality, and role of biological - in particular, fungal - IN in soil dust have not been characterized. By analysis of the culturable fungi in topsoils, from a range of different land use and ecosystem types in southeast Wyoming, we found ice-nucleation-active (INA) fungi to be both widespread and abundant, particularly in soils with recent inputs of decomposable organic matter. Across all investigated soils, 8% of fungal isolates were INA. All INA isolates initiated freezing at -5 to -6 C, and belonged to a single zygomycotic species, Mortierella alpina (Mortierellales, Mortierellomycotina). To our knowledge this is the first report of ice nucleation activity in a zygomycotic fungi because the few known INA fungi all belong to the phyla Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. M. alpina is known to be saprobic and widespread in soil, and Mortierella spores are present in air and rain. Sequencing of the ITS region and the gene for ?-linolenic elongase revealed four distinct clades, affiliated to different soil types. The IN produced by M. alpina seem to be proteinaceous, < 300 kDa in size, and can be easily washed off the mycelium. Ice nucleating fungal mycelium will ramify topsoils and probably also release cell-free IN into it. If these IN survive decomposition or are adsorbed onto mineral surfaces, their contribution might accumulate over time, perhaps to be transported with soil dust and influencing its ice nucleating properties.

  13. Visually assessing the level of development and soil surface stability of cyanobacterially dominated biological soil crusts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.; Phillips, S.L.; Witwicki, D.L.; Miller, M.E.

    2008-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are an integral part of dryland ecosystems and often included in long-term ecological monitoring programs. Estimating moss and lichen cover is fairly easy and non-destructive, but documenting cyanobacterial level of development (LOD) is more difficult. It requires sample collection for laboratory analysis, which causes soil surface disturbance. Assessing soil surface stability also requires surface disturbance. Here we present a visual technique to assess cyanobacterial LOD and soil surface stability. We define six development levels of cyanobacterially dominated soils based on soil surface darkness. We sampled chlorophyll a concentrations (the most common way of assessing cyanobacterial biomass), exopolysaccharide concentrations, and soil surface aggregate stability from representative areas of each LOD class. We found that, in the laboratory and field, LOD classes were effective at predicting chlorophyll a soil concentrations (R2=68-81%), exopolysaccharide concentrations (R2=71%), and soil aggregate stability (R2=77%). We took representative photos of these classes to construct a field guide. We then tested the ability of field crews to distinguish these classes and found this technique was highly repeatable among observers. We also discuss how to adjust this index for the different types of BSCs found in various dryland regions.

  14. Lichen-moss interactions within biological soil crusts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruckteschler, Nina; Williams, Laura; Büdel, Burkhard; Weber, Bettina

    2015-04-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) create well-known hotspots of microbial activity, being important components of hot and cold arid terrestrial regions. They colonize the uppermost millimeters of the soil, being composed of fungi, (cyano-) bacteria, algae, lichens, bryophytes and archaea in varying proportions. Biocrusts protect the (semi-) arid landscape from wind and water erosion, and also increase water holding capacity and nutrient content. Depending on location and developmental stage, composition and species abundance vary within biocrusts. As species live in close contact, they are expected to influence each other, but only a few interactions between different organisms have so far been explored. In the present study, we investigated the effects of the lichen Fulgensia fulgens whilst growing on the moss Trichostomum crispulum. While 77% of Fulgensia fulgens thalli were found growing associated with mosses in a German biocrust, up to 95% of Fulgensia bracteata thalli were moss-associated in a Swedish biocrust. In 49% (Germany) and in 78% (Sweden) of cases, thalli were observed on the moss T. crispulum and less frequently on four and three different moss species. Beneath F. fulgens and F. bracteata thalli, the mosses were dead and in close vicinity to the lichens the mosses appeared frail, bringing us to the assumption that the lichens may release substances harming the moss. We prepared a water extract from the lichen F. fulgens and used this to water the moss thalli (n = 6) on a daily basis over a time-span of three weeks. In a control setup, artificial rainwater was applied to the moss thalli (n = 6). Once a week, maximum CO2 gas exchange rates of the thalli were measured under constant conditions and at the end of the experiment the chlorophyll content of the moss samples was determined. In the course of the experiment net photosynthesis (NP) of the treatment samples decreased concurrently with an increase in dark respiration (DR). The control samples remained at the same stable level for both NP and DR over time. The chlorophyll content of the treatment samples was significantly lower than that of the controls. This supports our assumption that water extracts of F. fulgens may indeed cause a dieback of the host moss. In a next step of the project, the substances responsible for this detrimental effect on the moss will be identified. The accelerated dieback of the moss probably causes increased CO2 concentrations below the lichen thalli, improving their overall photosynthetic performance. Thus, both dead and living biomass in biocrusts increase upon this association, promoting microbial activity and the growth of vascular plant vegetation.

  15. The effect of biochar in soil enzyme activities: Latest advances and future directions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paz-Ferreiro, Jorge; Mndez, Ana; Gasc, Gabriel

    2014-05-01

    In the last years there has been an increasing interest in biochar research. Soil biological and biochemical properties have a preeminent role driving nutrient cycling and can be considered as indicators of soil quality. The information on the effects of biochar addition in soil biological activities in still scarce, although an influential number of articles have appeared lately. The aim of this work is to provide an overview of those articles dealing with the biological impact of biochar addition to soil. Studies conducted in soils in different countries differing in forming factors and fertility status are presented. The focus of this work is on how biochar interacts with soil fauna, on changes in soil biological and biochemical properties following heavy metal immobilization after biochar addition and on how these changes are important in relation to global change. Priority areas were research is needed are identified.

  16. Isotopic Composition of Organic and Inorganic Carbon in Desert Biological Soil Crust Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexander, K.; Hartnett, H.; Anbar, A.; Beraldi, H.; Garcia-Pichel, F.

    2006-12-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are microbial communities that colonize soil surfaces in many arid regions. BSCs are important sources for fixed carbon and nitrogen in these ecosystems, and they greatly influence the structure, function, and appearance of desert soils. Biological activity of BSCs occurs during pulses of hydration requiring desert crusts to tolerate extremes in UV radiation, temperature, and desiccation. These characteristics make desert crusts unique systems that have received little consideration in the study of biogeochemical processes in extreme environments. This project investigates the impact of BSCs on carbon dynamics within desert soils. Soil cores ranging in depth from 8 to 12 cm were taken in March, 2006 from deserts near Moab, Utah. Two major BSC classes were identified: lichen-dominated (dark and pinnacled) soil crusts and cyanobacteria-dominated (light and flat) soil crusts. These two surface morphologies are related to the different biological communities. Carbon content and stable carbon isotopic composition were determined for the bulk carbon pool, as well as for the organic and inorganic carbon fractions of the soils. Expectedly, there was a net decrease in organic carbon content with depth (0.39-0.27 percent). Stable carbon isotope values for the organic fraction ranged from -5.8 per mil to -24.0 per mil (Avg: -14.4 per mil, S.D: 6.42 per mil). Stable carbon isotope values for the inorganic fraction ranged from 0.3 per mil to -3.6 per mil (Avg: -2.4 per mil, S.D.: 1.05 per mil). The variation in the isotopic composition of the organic carbon was due to a strong depletion below the surface soil value occurring between 3 and 5 cm depth, with an enrichment above the original surface value at depths below 6 to 10 cm. These data suggest that within desert soil crust systems the carbon isotopic signal is complex with both a clear biological imprint (lighter organic carbon) as well as evidence for some mechanism that results in isotopically heavy organic carbon at the surface. This pattern appears to be similar between crusts of disparate biological composition.

  17. Ice Nucleation Activity in the Widespread Soil Fungus Mortierella alpina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frhlich-Nowoisky, J.; Hill, T. C. J.; Pummer, B. G.; Franc, G. D.; Pschl, U.

    2014-08-01

    Biological residues in soil dust are a potentially strong source of atmospheric ice nuclei (IN). So far, however, the abundance, diversity, sources, seasonality, and role of biological - in particular, fungal - IN in soil dust have not been characterized. By analysis of the culturable fungi in topsoils, from a range of different land use and ecosystem types in south-east Wyoming, we found ice nucleation active (INA) fungi to be both widespread and abundant, particularly in soils with recent inputs of decomposable organic matter. Across all investigated soils, 8% of fungal isolates were INA. All INA isolates initiated freezing at -5 to -6 C, and belonged to a single zygomycotic species, Mortierella alpina (Mortierellales, Mortierellomycotina). By contrast, the handful of fungal species so far reported as INA all belong within the Ascomycota or Basidiomycota phyla. M. alpina is known to be saprobic, widespread in soil and present in air and rain. Sequencing of the ITS region and the gene for ?-linolenic-elongase revealed four distinct clades, affiliated to different soil types. The IN produced by M. alpina seem to be proteinaceous, <300 kDa in size, and can be easily washed off the mycelium. Ice nucleating fungal mycelium will ramify topsoils and probably also release cell-free IN into it. If these IN survive decomposition or are adsorbed onto mineral surfaces, their contribution might accumulate over time, perhaps to be transported with soil dust and influencing its ice nucleating properties.

  18. Evolution of soil biological properties after addition of glyphosate, diflufenican and glyphosate+diflufenican herbicides.

    PubMed

    Tejada, Manuel

    2009-07-01

    The aim of this paper was to study in laboratory the degradation and the effects on biological properties in two soils after the addition of glyphosate, diflufenican and glyphosate+diflufenican. One hundred grams of sieved soil (<2mm) were mixed with (i) 13mL of Zarpa (16% glyphosate and 4% diflufenican) prepared in a water solution of 1L (0.52g of glyphosate and 2.08g of diflufenican), (ii) 5.2mL of Round up (40% glyphosate), prepared in a water solution of 1L (0.52g of glyphosate), and (iii) 1.19mL of Brodal (43.5% diflufenican), prepared in a water solution of 1L (2.08g of diflufenican). Soil samples were collected after 0, 1, 5, 10, 15, 30, 60, 120 and 180d of incubation and analyzed for microbial biomass-C and dehydrogenase, urease, beta-glucosidase, phosphatase, arylsulphatase activities and glyphosate and diflufenican contents. At the end of the experiment, in the clayey texture soil the glyphosate and diflufenican contents were higher 50% and 30.7%, respectively, for the glyphosate+diflufenican treatment compared to glyphosate and diflufenican treatments, respectively. In the sandy loam texture soil the glyphosate and diflufenican contents were higher (38.9% and 39.4%, respectively) when the glyphosate and diflufenican were added as Zarpa than Round up or Brodal. The application of glyphosate+diflufenican mixture to soil increased the toxic effects of both herbicides in the soil biological activity and the individual soil persistence of each herbicide. PMID:19376558

  19. Database of biologically active peptide sequences.

    PubMed

    Dziuba, J; Minkiewicz, P; Nałecz, D; Iwaniak, A

    1999-06-01

    Proteins are sources of many peptides with diverse biological activity. Such peptides are considered as valuable components of foods with desired and designed biological activity. Two strategies are currently recommended for research in the area of biological activity of food protein fragments. The first strategy covers investigations on products of enzymic hydrolysis of proteins. The second one is synthesis of peptides identical with protein fragments and investigations using these peptides. It is possible to predict biological activity of protein fragments using sequence alignments between proteins and biologically active peptides from database. Our database contains currently 527 sequences of bioactive peptides with antihypertensive, opioid, immunomodulating and other activities. The sequence alignments can give information about localization of biologically active fragments in protein chain, but not about possibilities of enzymic release of such fragments. The information is thus equivalent with this obtained using synthetic peptides identical with protein fragments. Possibilities offered by the database are discussed using wheat alpha/beta-gliadin, bovine beta-lactoglobulin and bovine beta-casein (including influence of genetic polymorphism and genetic engineering on amino acid sequences) as examples. PMID:10399353

  20. Soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil is a diverse natural material characterized by solid, liquid, and gas phases that impart unique chemical, physical, and biological properties. Soil provides many key functions, including supporting plant growth and providing environmental remediation. Monitoring key soil properties and processe...

  1. County-Scale Spatial Distribution of Soil Enzyme Activities and Enzyme Activity Indices in Agricultural Land: Implications for Soil Quality Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Baoni; Wang, Junxing; He, Wenxiang; Wang, Xudong; Wei, Gehong

    2014-01-01

    Here the spatial distribution of soil enzymatic properties in agricultural land was evaluated on a county-wide (567 km2) scale in Changwu, Shaanxi Province, China. The spatial variations in activities of five hydrolytic enzymes were examined using geostatistical methods. The relationships between soil enzyme activities and other soil properties were evaluated using both an integrated total enzyme activity index (TEI) and the geometric mean of enzyme activities (GME). At the county scale, soil invertase, phosphatase, and catalase activities were moderately spatially correlated, whereas urease and dehydrogenase activities were weakly spatially correlated. Correlation analysis showed that both TEI and GME were better correlated with selected soil physicochemical properties than single enzyme activities. Multivariate regression analysis showed that soil OM content had the strongest positive effect while soil pH had a negative effect on the two enzyme activity indices. In addition, total phosphorous content had a positive effect on TEI and GME in orchard soils, whereas alkali-hydrolyzable nitrogen and available potassium contents, respectively, had negative and positive effects on these two enzyme indices in cropland soils. The results indicate that land use changes strongly affect soil enzyme activities in agricultural land, where TEI provides a sensitive biological indicator for soil quality. PMID:25610908

  2. The biological factors influence on the conversion of mineral components of Extremely Arid Desert Soils (Kazakhstan)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kutovaya, Olga; Vasilenko, Elena; Lebedeva, Marina; Tkhakakhova, Azida

    2013-04-01

    Extremely arid soils of stony deserts (hamadas) along the southern periphery of the Ili Depression are considered to be analogous to extremely arid soils of Mongolia, also named as "ultra-arid primitive gray-brown soils." In general, the morphology of extremely arid soils of hamadas in the Ili Depression is similar to that of the soils of stony deserts in other parts of the world, including the Gobi, Atacama, and Tarim deserts. The diagnostics of the active communities of microorganisms were performed according to the method of Rybalkina-Kononenko. The exact identification of the living forms of microorganisms to the species level is not always possible with the use of this method. However, it allows us to study the physiological role of the microorganisms and their ecological functions, including the relationships with the soil matrix and other organisms. In particular, it is possible to estimate the contribution of the microorganisms to the transformation of mineral soil components. The obtained materials allow us to conclude that the extremely arid desert soils are characterized by the very high biological activity during short periods of the increased soil moistening after rare and strong rains. The diversity of living forms is very considerable; both prokaryotes (cyanobacteria, actinomycetes, and iron bacteria) and protists (green algae, diatoms, and dinoflagellates) are developed in the soil. Thus, during a short period after the rains, these microorganisms pass from the stage of anabiosis to the stage of active growth and reproduction. Then, upon drying of the soil, the biotic activity of the soil slows down and, finally, terminates. The organisms remain in the state of anabiosis until the next rain. During the period of active growth, the microorganisms compose a specific consortium of different species and exert a profound impact on the soil properties. They participate in the transformation of the soil minerals with the formation of amorphous substances that are clearly seen in biofilms on the surface of gravels of the desert pavement and on the walls of vesicular pores in the crust and subcrust (AKL) horizons of the soil. The organomineral compounds are accumulated in the vesicular pores due to the synthesis and mineralization of the microbial biomass. This is a specific feature of the humus-accumulative process in the extremely arid desert soils. The biogenic transformation of iron-containing minerals, the mobility of iron, and its accumulation in films and coagulated microforms is largely due to the living activity of iron bacteria. These iron pedofeatures are specific of the extremely arid desert soils. We suppose that some part of vesicular pores in the AKL horizon has a microbiological origin, because separate bacterial cells may form intracellular gas vacuoles and extracellular gas bulbs, as well as membrane sacs and cell dilatations that can shape the vesicular pores. In general, our data indicate that soils, including extremely arid desert soils, serve as reservoirs of the microbial diversity and ensure the development and preservation of diverse microorganisms with specific mechanisms of adaptation to the sharp changes in the environmental conditions. This biota-protecting role of soils is particularly well pronounced during the climatic pessimum. This study was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, project no. 12-04-00990a.

  3. Large-scale experience with biological treatment of contaminated soil

    SciTech Connect

    Schulz-Berendt, V.; Poetzsch, E.

    1995-12-31

    The efficiency of biological methods for the cleanup of soil contaminated with total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) was demonstrated by a large-scale example in which 38,000 tons of TPH- and PAH-polluted soil was treated onsite with the TERRAFERM{reg_sign} degradation system to reach the target values of 300 mg/kg TPH and 5 mg/kg PAH. Detection of the ecotoxicological potential (Microtox{reg_sign} assay) showed a significant decrease during the remediation. Low concentrations of PAH in the ground were treated by an in situ technology. The in situ treatment was combined with mechanical measures (slurry wall) to prevent the contamination from dispersing from the site.

  4. Assessment of soil biological quality index (QBS-ar) in different crop rotation systems in paddy soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadimi-Goki, Mandana; Bini, Claudio; haefele, Stephan

    2013-04-01

    New methods, based on soil microarthropods for soil quality evaluation have been proposed by some Authors. Soil microarthropods demonstrated to respond sensitively to land management practices and to be correlated with beneficial soil functions. QBS Index (QBS-ar) is calculated on the basis of microarthropod groups present in a soil sample. Each biological form found in the sample receives a score from 1 to 20 (eco-morphological index, EMI), according to its adaptation to soil environment. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of various rotation systems and sampling periods on soil biological quality index, in paddy soils. For the purpose of this study surface soil samples (0-15 cm depth) were collected from different rotation systems (rice-rice-rice, soya-rice-rice, fallow-rice and pea-soya-rice) with three replications, and four sampling times in April (after field preparation), June (after seedling), August (after tillering stage) and October (after rice harvesting). The study area is located in paddy soils of Verona area, Northern Italy. Soil microarthropods from a total of 48 samples were extracted and classified according to the Biological Quality of Soil Index (QBS-ar) method. In addition soil moisture, Cumulative Soil Respiration and pH were measured in each site. More diversity of microarthropod groups was found in June and August sampling times. T-test results between different rotations did not show significant differences while the mean difference between rotation and different sampling times is statistically different. The highest QBS-ar value was found in the fallow-rice rotation in the forth soil sampling time. Similar value was found in soya-rice-rice rotation. Result of linear regression analysis indicated that there is significant correlation between QBS-ar values and Cumulative Soil Respiration. Keywords: soil biological quality index (QBS-ar), Crop Rotation System, paddy soils, Italy

  5. Soil biological attributes in arsenic-contaminated gold mining sites after revegetation.

    PubMed

    Dos Santos, Jessé Valentim; de Melo Rangel, Wesley; Azarias Guimarães, Amanda; Duque Jaramillo, Paula Marcela; Rufini, Márcia; Marra, Leandro Marciano; Varón López, Maryeimy; Pereira da Silva, Michele Aparecida; Fonsêca Sousa Soares, Cláudio Roberto; de Souza Moreira, Fatima Maria

    2013-12-01

    Recovery of arsenic contaminated areas is a challenge society faces throughout the world. Revegetation associated with microbial activity can play an essential role in this process. This work investigated biological attributes in a gold mining area with different arsenic contents at different sites under two types of extant revegetation associated with cover layers of the soil: BS, Brachiaria sp. and Stizolobium sp., and LEGS, Acacia crassicarpa, A. holosericea, A. mangium, Sesbania virgata, Albizia lebbeck and Pseudosamanea guachapele. References were also evaluated, comprising the following three sites: B1, weathered sulfide substrate without revegetation; BM, barren material after gold extraction and PRNH (private reserve of natural heritage), an uncontaminated forest site near the mining area. The organic and microbial biomass carbon contents and substrate-induced respiration rates for these sites from highest to lowest were: PRNH > LEGS > BS > B1 and BM. These attributes were negatively correlated with soluble and total arsenic concentration in the soil. The sites that have undergone revegetation (LEGS and BS) had higher densities of bacteria, fungi, phosphate solubilizers and ammonium oxidizers than the sites without vegetation. Principal component analysis showed that the LEGS site grouped with PRNH, indicating that the use of leguminous species associated with an uncontaminated soil cover layer contributed to the improvement of the biological attributes. With the exception of acid phosphatase, all the biological attributes were indicators of soil recovery, particularly the following: microbial carbon, substrate-induced respiration, density of culturable bacteria, fungi and actinobacteria, phosphate solubilizers and metabolic quotient. PMID:24114185

  6. Stabilization of labile organic C along a chronosequence of soil development: mineralogical vs. biological controls

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McFarland, J. W.; Waldrop, M. P.; Strawn, D.; Harden, J. W.

    2010-12-01

    Soil organic matter (SOM) represents an important reservoir for carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and other essential nutrients. Consequently, variation in SOM turnover rates regulates resource availability for soil microbial activity and plant growth. Long-term SOM stabilization generally involves restricted microbial access to SOM through a variety of processes including complexation with soil minerals. These organo-mineral interactions are influenced by mineral composition and texture, often related to soil age. Soil microorganisms also influence the stabilization of C inputs to the pedosphere through the production of refractory residues controlled in part by C allocation patterns during metabolism. In this study we examined, simultaneously, the contribution of these two C stabilizing mechanisms by tracing the fate of two 13C-labeled substrates (glucose and p-hydroxybenzoic acid) along a 1600Kya chronosequence of soil development along the Cowlitz River in southwest Washington. Our objective was to evaluate the relationship between mineralogical and biological controls over C sequestration in soils. Mineralogical analyses were done using the selective dissolutions ammonium oxalate (AOD), and dithionite-citrate extraction (CBD). In this cool, humid environment, intermediate aged soils derived from the late Wisconsin Evans Creek drift (24ka) had the highest AOD extractable Al, Fe, and Si, indicating a higher concentration of poorly crystalline minerals relative to other terraces. Correspondingly, CBD extractable Fe increases with soil age, further supporting the idea that crystalline iron oxides are also more prevalent with weathering. Turnover of both 13C-labeled substrates was rapid (< 12.5 hrs) However, the proportion of substrate mineralized to CO2 varied among terraces. Mineralization to CO2 was significantly lower at 24ka than that for the other three age classes (0.25k, 220k, and 1,600k years bp), corresponding to higher recovery of 13C in bulk soil for this age class. In similar studies, soils containing a higher proportion of poorly crystalline minerals typically have a higher degree of hydration, surface area, and variable charge, which can increase microbial yield, reducing the amount of CO2 produced per unit biomass and increasing potential for soil C sequestration. Additionally, total flux of 13CO2 was significantly higher and recovery of 13C in microbial pools trended lower for the phenolic than for glucose for all soils types excluding the 24ka terrace. The broader implication, which may warrant consideration in models of terrestrial C flux, is that altering the constituency of labile C inputs to these soil environments could similarly influence the degree to which C is stabilized in soil mineral assemblages.

  7. ENZYME ACTIVITIES IN SEMIARID AGRICULTURAL SOILS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Knowledge of biochemical processes in low carbon content soils of the semiarid regions in West Texas, USA, in response to different land management is limited. The activities of seven soil enzymes involved in C, N, P, or S cycling were compared in an Olton loam (Fine, mixed, thermic, superactive, A...

  8. Soil tillage induced impacts on soil microbial activity of agriculturally used soils in Austria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baatar, Undrakh-Od; Klik, Andreas; Trmper, Gerlinde

    2010-05-01

    Soil can act as a net sink for sequestering carbon and thus attenuating the increase in atmospheric CO2 if appropriate soil and crop management is applied. The objectives of this study are to determine the impacts of different tillage treatments on soil microbial activity. Soil microbial respiration (MR), substrate-induced respiration (SIR), -glucosidase activity (GLU) and dehydrogenase (DHY) activity were analysed for five agricultural fields in Lower Austria and Styria in 2007 and 2008. These investigations are part of a research project about the influence of soil tillage on CO2 emissions and carbon dynamics of Austrian cropland. The study sites differ in climatic conditions, soil texture, slope and crop rotation. All fields belong to long-term tillage treatment experiments performed by agricultural schools. Three different tillage systems are investigated: Conventional tillage (CT), Reduced tillage (RT) and No-tillage (NT). RT and NT use cover crops during the winter period. Each tillage system is replicated three times per site. In spring, summer and autumn 2007 and 2008, soil samples were taken from each plot at the soil depth of 0-10 cm, 10-20 cm and 20-30 cm. Samples were sieved (2 mm) and stored at 4C in a refrigerator. Analyses were performed within one month after sampling. In addition, soil moisture, pH value and carbon and nitrogen content of the soil samples were determined. Preliminary results show that the amount of microbiological activity differs between the five sites during experimental years depicting the influence of soil texture. The influence of tillage treatment on soil microbial parameter was best represented by SIR. For all fields, values changed during the vegetation period. The impact of soil texture and soil depth could be analysed by all investigated soil microbial parameters whereas the tillage treatment showed a significant influence only for SIR.

  9. Metatranscriptomic census of active protists in soils.

    PubMed

    Geisen, Stefan; Tveit, Alexander T; Clark, Ian M; Richter, Andreas; Svenning, Mette M; Bonkowski, Michael; Urich, Tim

    2015-10-01

    The high numbers and diversity of protists in soil systems have long been presumed, but their true diversity and community composition have remained largely concealed. Traditional cultivation-based methods miss a majority of taxa, whereas molecular barcoding approaches employing PCR introduce significant biases in reported community composition of soil protists. Here, we applied a metatranscriptomic approach to assess the protist community in 12 mineral and organic soil samples from different vegetation types and climatic zones using small subunit ribosomal RNA transcripts as marker. We detected a broad diversity of soil protists spanning across all known eukaryotic supergroups and revealed a strikingly different community composition than shown before. Protist communities differed strongly between sites, with Rhizaria and Amoebozoa dominating in forest and grassland soils, while Alveolata were most abundant in peat soils. The Amoebozoa were comprised of Tubulinea, followed with decreasing abundance by Discosea, Variosea and Mycetozoa. Transcripts of Oomycetes, Apicomplexa and Ichthyosporea suggest soil as reservoir of parasitic protist taxa. Further, Foraminifera and Choanoflagellida were ubiquitously detected, showing that these typically marine and freshwater protists are autochthonous members of the soil microbiota. To the best of our knowledge, this metatranscriptomic study provides the most comprehensive picture of active protist communities in soils to date, which is essential to target the ecological roles of protists in the complex soil system. PMID:25822483

  10. Assessing level of development and successional stages in biological soil crusts with biological indicators.

    PubMed

    Lan, Shubin; Wu, Li; Zhang, Delu; Hu, Chunxiang

    2013-08-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) perform vital ecosystem services, but the difference in biological components or developmental level still affects the rate and type of these services. In order to differentiate crust successional stages in quantity and analyze the relationship between crust developmental level and successional stages, this work determined several biological indicators in a series of different developmental BSCs in the Shapotou region of China. The results showed that crust developmental level (level of development index) can be well indicated by crust biological indicators. Photosynthetic biomass was the most appropriate to differentiate crust successional stages, although both photosynthetic biomass and respiration intensity increased with the development and succession of BSCs. Based on of the different biological compositions, BSCs were quantificationally categorized into different successional stages including cyanobacterial crusts (lichen and moss coverages <20 %), lichen crusts (lichen coverage >20 % but moss coverage <20 %), semi-moss crusts (moss coverage >20 % but <75 %), and moss crusts (moss coverage >75 %). In addition, it was found that cyanobacterial and microalgal biomass first increased as cyanobacterial crusts formed, then decreased when lots of mosses emerged on the crust surface; however nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria and heterotrophic microbes increased in the later developmental BSCs. The structural adjustment of biological components in the different developmental BSCs may reflect the requirement of crust survival and material transition. PMID:23389251

  11. Biological soil crusts: a fundamental organizing agent in global drylands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belnap, J.; Zhang, Y.

    2013-12-01

    Ecosystem function is profoundly affected by plant community composition, which is ultimately determined by factors that govern seed retention. Dryland ecosystems constitute ~35% of terrestrial surfaces, with most soils in these regions covered by biological soil crusts (biocrusts), a community whose autotrophs are dominated by cyanobacteria, lichens, and mosses. Studies at 550 sites revealed that plant community composition was controlled by the interaction among biocrust type, disturbance regime, and external morphology of seeds. In bare soils (due to disturbance), all seed types were present in the seedbank and plant community. As biocrusts became better developed (i.e., the cover of lichens and mosses increased), they more strongly filtered out seeds with appendages. Thus, soils under late successional biocrusts contained seedbanks dominated by smooth seeds and vascular plants growing in late successional biocrusts were dominated by those with smooth seeds. Therefore, the tension between the removal of biocrusts by soil surface disturbance and their recovery creates a shifting mosaic of plant patch types in both space and time. Because changes in vascular plant communities reverberate throughout both below ground and above ground food webs and thus affect multiple trophic levels, we propose that biocrusts are a fundamental organizing agent in drylands worldwide. Future increased demand for resources will intensify land use both temporally and spatially, resulting in an increased rate of biocrust loss across larger areas. As a result, we can expect shifts in the composition and distribution of plant communities, accompanied by concomitant changes in many aspects of dryland ecosystems. Conceptual model of shifting dryland plant mosaics through space and time. Within the large circles, soil surface type changes with time in the same space, going from bare uncrusted soil (B) to cyanobacterial biocrust (C) to lichen/moss (L/M) biocrust. Disturbance (D) drives the cycle back towards U, and recovery (R) drives it towards L/M. Larger disturbances and dispersal of biocrust organisms among the larger circles result in mosaics that shift in space as well. The bar chart shows the proportion of smooth (left side) and rough (right side) seeds under different crust types.

  12. Dynamics of the biological properties of soil and the nutrient release of Amorpha fruticosa L. litter in soil polluted by crude oil.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xiaoxi; Liu, Zengwen; Luc, Nhu Trung; Liang, Xiao; Liu, Xiaobo

    2015-11-01

    Litter from Amorpha fruticosa, a potential phytoremediating plant, was collected and used in a decomposition experiment that involved the litterbag in soil polluted by crude oil. The dynamics of the biological properties of soil and the nutrient release of the litter were detected. The results indicated that (1) in lightly polluted soil (LP, petroleum concentration was 15 g kg(-1)), the bacteria (including actinomycetes), and fungi populations were significant higher than those in unpolluted soil (CK) at the 1st month after pollution, and the bacteria (including actinomycetes) populations were higher than those in the CK at the 6th and 12th months. In moderately polluted soil (MP, 30 g kg(-1)), the bacteria (including actinomycetes) populations were higher than those in the CK at the 1st and 6th months, whereas only the actinomycetes population was greater than that in the CK at the 12th month. In seriously polluted soil (SP, 45 g kg(-1)), only the fungi population was higher than that in the CK at the 6th month. (2) The activities of soil protease, carboxymethyl cellulase, and sucrase were generally inhibited in polluted soil. Peroxidase activity was generally inhibited in the LP and MP soil, and polyphenol oxidase activity was inhibited in the SP soil at 6-12 months. (3) At the end of litter decomposition, the LP soil significantly increased the release rate of all nutrients, except for K. The MP soil reduced the release rate of Fe and Mn, whereas it increased that of C and Cu. The SP soil decreased the release rate of all nutrients except for Cu and Zn. In conclusion, SP by crude oil would lead to limitations in the release of nutrients from the litter and to decreases in the community stability of a phytoremediating plant. A. fruticosa could only be used in phytoremediation of polluted soil at concentrations below 45 g kg(-1) (crude). PMID:26087933

  13. Marine Pyridoacridine Alkaloids: Biosynthesis and Biological Activities.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Sabrin R M; Mohamed, Gamal A

    2016-01-01

    Pyridoacridines are a class of strictly marine-derived alkaloids that constitute one of the largest chemical families of marine alkaloids. During the last few years, both natural pyridoacridines and their analogues have constituted excellent targets for synthetic works. They have been the subject of intense study due to their significant biological activities; cytotoxic, antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, insecticidal, anti-HIV, and anti-parasitic activities. In the present review, 95 pyridoacridine alkaloids isolated from marine organisms are discussed in term of their occurrence, biosynthesis, biological activities, and structural assignment. PMID:26765351

  14. Fractal Scaling of Particle Size Distribution and Relationships with Topsoil Properties Affected by Biological Soil Crusts

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Guang-Lei; Ding, Guo-Dong; Wu, Bin; Zhang, Yu-Qing; Qin, Shu-Gao; Zhao, Yuan-Yuan; Bao, Yan-Feng; Liu, Yun-Dong; Wan, Li; Deng, Ji-Feng

    2014-01-01

    Background Biological soil crusts are common components of desert ecosystem; they cover ground surface and interact with topsoil that contribute to desertification control and degraded land restoration in arid and semiarid regions. Methodology/Principal Findings To distinguish the changes in topsoil affected by biological soil crusts, we compared topsoil properties across three types of successional biological soil crusts (algae, lichens, and mosses crust), as well as the referenced sandland in the Mu Us Desert, Northern China. Relationships between fractal dimensions of soil particle size distribution and selected soil properties were discussed as well. The results indicated that biological soil crusts had significant positive effects on soil physical structure (P<0.05); and soil organic carbon and nutrients showed an upward trend across the successional stages of biological soil crusts. Fractal dimensions ranged from 2.1477 to 2.3032, and significantly linear correlated with selected soil properties (R2 = 0.494∼0.955, P<0.01). Conclusions/Significance Biological soil crusts cause an important increase in soil fertility, and are beneficial to sand fixation, although the process is rather slow. Fractal dimension proves to be a sensitive and useful index for quantifying changes in soil properties that additionally implies desertification. This study will be essential to provide a firm basis for future policy-making on optimal solutions regarding desertification control and assessment, as well as degraded ecosystem restoration in arid and semiarid regions. PMID:24516668

  15. Microbiological activity of soils populated by Lasius niger ants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golichenkov, M. V.; Neimatov, A. L.; Kiryushin, A. V.

    2009-07-01

    Ants are the most widespread colonial insects assigned to the Hymenoptera order. They actively use soil as a habitat; being numerous, they create a specific microrelief. It is shown that ants affect microbiological processes of the carbon and nitrogen cycles. The carbon content in anthills remains stable throughout the growing season, and the respiration intensity is about three times higher as compared with that in the control soil. The highest methane production (0.08 nmol of CH4/g per day) in the anthill is observed at the beginning of the growing season and exceeds that in the control soil by four times. The most active nitrogen fixation (about 4 nmol of C2H4/g per h) in the anthill takes place in the early growing season, whereas, in the control soil, it is observed in the middle of the growing season. At the same time, the diazotrophic activity is higher in the control soil. The lowest denitrification in the anthill is observed at the beginning and end of the growing season. The dynamics of the denitrification in the anthill are opposite to the dynamics of the diazotrophic activity. We suppose that these regularities of the biological activity in the anthill are related to the ecology of the ants and the changes in their food preferences during the growing season.

  16. Biological reduction of uranium in groundwater and subsurface soil.

    PubMed

    Abdelouas, A; Lutze, W; Gong, W; Nuttall, E H; Strietelmeier, B A; Travis, B J

    2000-04-24

    Biological reduction of uranium is one of the techniques currently studied for in situ remediation of groundwater and subsurface soil. We investigated U(VI) reduction in groundwaters and soils of different origin to verify the presence of bacteria capable of U(VI) reduction. The groundwaters originated from mill tailings sites with U concentrations as high as 50 mg/l, and from other sites where uranium is not a contaminant, but was added in the laboratory to reach concentrations up to 11 mg/l. All waters contained nitrate and sulfate. After oxygen and nitrate reduction, U(VI) was reduced by sulfate-reducing bacteria, whose growth was stimulated by ethanol and trimetaphosphate. Uranium precipitated as hydrated uraninite (UO2 x xH2O). In the course of reduction of U(VI), Mn(IV) and Fe(III) from the soil were reduced as well. During uraninite precipitation a comparatively large mass of iron sulfides formed and served as a redox buffer. If the excess of iron sulfide is large enough, uraninite will not be oxidized by oxygenated groundwater. We show that bacteria capable of reducing U(VI) to U(IV) are ubiquitous in nature. The uranium reducers are primarily sulfate reducers and are stimulated by adding nutrients to the groundwater. PMID:10811248

  17. Changes in the biological diversity and concentration of total DNA under the influence of mineral fertilizers in agrochernozemic soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkhakakhova, Azida; Kutovaya, Olga; Ivanova, Ekaterina; Pavlyuchenko, Anatoly

    2014-05-01

    Chernozems represent the most valuable soil resource for Russian agriculture. Their sustainable use in intensive farming systems with preservation of the biological diversity and biological activity of these soils is of crucial importance for the agri-environmental security of Russia. We studied the influence of different rates of mineral fertilizers on the biological activity of chernozems on experimental fields of the Dokuchaev Research Institute of Agriculture in Kamennaya Steppe (Voronezh oblast). Soil samples were taken at the end of April 2013 from the plow horizon on trials with different rates of fertilization: NPK-0, NPK-60, and NPK-120 (kg/ha); a long-term fallow plot was used as an absolute control. The biological activity was analyzed by routine inoculation methods and by the molecular biology techniques based on DNA isolation from the soil samples. Quantitative parameters of the isolated and purified DNA were determined by measuring the fluorescence of the DNA preparations with added intercalating dyes; GelDoc XR system and Image Lab and TotalLab Quant. software were used. Microbiological studies showed the high biological activity of the chernozems soil in all the trials. No significant differences were found between the trials for the microbiological processes of the carbon cycle. There was a weakly expressed tendency for an increase in the activity of actinomycetes from the soil with zero fertilization (5.11 log10CFU/g) to the soil with maximum (NPK-120) fertilization (5.69 log10CFU/g) and the fallow soil (5.73 log10CFU/g); the number of cultivated micromycetes decreased from the soil with zero fertilization (4.76 log10CFU/g) to the soil with maximum fertilization (4.14 log10CFU/g) and to the fallow soil (4.1 log10CFU/g). A less equilibrium state is typical of the microorganisms participating in the nitrogen cycle. The number of cultivated aerobic and anaerobic nitrogen-fixing bacteria somewhat increased in the fertilized trials (NPK-60, NPK-120). The most active development of denitrifiers was in the fallow soil. It is known that cultivated forms comprise only about 1 to 10% of the total number of soil microorganisms. Quantitative analysis by the methods of molecular biology makes it possible to consider the full range of microorganisms. The concentration of extracted DNA can serve as an indicator of the total "biogenity" of the soil, as we isolated the genetic material of all organisms living in the soil. The highest concentration of DNA found in the samples from the fallow soil. Much lower values were found in the soils treated with mineral fertilizers: 38.9% in trial NPK-60 and 53.3% in trials NPK-120 and NPK-0. Thus, to sustain biota in cultivated chernozems and to improve the ecological state of the fields, the rates of mineral fertilizers have to be properly controlled. Moderate rates can be recommended. Features of the soil microbiome can serve as universal and sensitive indicators of the state of the soils under different farming systems. The quantitative analysis of isolated total DNA is an efficient tool to control the ecological state of the soils, especially those involved in agriculture.

  18. Six Siderophore-Producing Microorganisms Identified in Biological Soil Crusts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noonan, K.; Anbar, A. D.; Garcia-Pichel, F.; Poret-peterson, A. T.; Hartnett, H. E.

    2011-12-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are diverse microbial communities that colonize soils in arid and semi-arid environments. Cyanobacteria in BSCs are pioneer organisms that increase ecosystem habitability by providing fixed carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) as well as by reducing water run-off and increasing infiltration. Photosynthesis and N fixation, in particular, require a variety of metals in large quantities, and yet, metals are predominantly insoluble in the environments where BSCs thrive. Therefore, BSC organisms must have efficient strategies for extracting metals from soil minerals. We hypothesized that BSC microbes, particularly the cyanobacteria, produce siderophores to serve their metal-acquisition needs. Siderophores are small organic compounds that bind Fe with high affinity and are produced by a variety of microorganisms, including cyanobacteria. Most siderophores bind Fe, primarily; however, some can also bind Mo, V, and Cu. Soil siderophores are released by microbes to increase the solubility of metals from minerals and to facilitate microbial uptake. Thus, siderophores serve as chemical weathering agents and provide a direct link between soil microbes and minerals. Studying siderophore production in BSCs provides insight into how BSCs tackle the challenge of acquiring insoluble metals, and may help conservationists determine useful fertilizers for BSC growth by facilitating metal acquisition. Biological soil crusts were collected near Moab, UT. Soil slurries were prepared in deionized water and transferred to modified BG-11 agar plates. The O-CAS agar plate assay was used to screen organisms for siderophore production. Siderophore producing microbes were isolated and identified by16S rRNA gene sequencing. Cultures were then grown in 3 L batch cultures under metal limitation, and siderophore presence was monitored using the traditional liquid CAS assay. After siderophore detection, cells were removed by centrifugation, organic compounds were separated using Amberlite° XAD° 2 resin and a C-18 column, and siderophores were detected with electrospray-ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). Column eluants were analyzed with and without Fe addition. Siderophores were identified as those peaks that decreased upon Fe addition (unbound) with a corresponding increase in the mass plus Fe peak (Fe-bound). Of the organisms isolated, 42 out of 182 produce siderophores (23%). At this time 6 unique siderophore-producing organisms have been identified in the genera Balneimonas, Microvirga, Bacillus, and the Group IV cyanobacteria. Siderophore production in BSCs is performed by both heterotrophs and phototrophs, and we present phylogenetic data for these isolates. A comparison with organisms previously identified in BSC communities indicates that the siderophore-producers represent some of the dominant crust microbes (i.e., Nostoc sp.). This is the first report of siderophore production in BSCs, and thus it is a significant step towards understanding biologically-mediated metal cycling in arid ecosystems.

  19. Influence of shrub species and biological soil crust cover on nutrient distribution in a semiarid sand dune area (Negev, Israel)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drahorad, S.; Felix-Henningsen, P.

    2009-04-01

    Deserts are expanding and the restoration of barren lands is of great importance. To achieve this goal the understanding of soil-plant interactions is necessary. In semiarid systems the biogeochemical cycles are strongly linked to "fertile islands" which are surrounded by bare interspaces, areas mostly covered by biological soil crusts. These microbiological communities have great influence runoff, nutrient fixation and soil stability. This spatial horizontal pattern on the surface leads to vertical distribution patterns of nutrients. For a re-established sand dune system in the Negev (Israel) this pattern is highly depending on surface cover. Here unconsolidated sand dunes have been stabilised by the growth of biological soil crust leading to an establishment of perennial shrubs. After 15 years of landuse exclusion a clear spatial pattern in the amount of different soil cations and anions can be proofed. Our results show significant difference for potassium, manganese, calcium, sodium and chloride under biological soil crusts, the chenopod Anabasis articulata and the legume Retama raetam. This redistribution on behalf of biological processes can be shown for 3 study sites along a sharp precipitation gradient (90 mm per year up to 170 mm per year). The comparison of the study sites shows changes in the distribution patterns with increasing precipitation not only due to higher leaching or differences in dust input but changes in plant activity. The plant essential potassium proofs to be the best indicator for redistribution processes. The not plant essential sodium is non-normally distributed as Anabasis articulata and the biological soil crust accumulate this cation. Perennial shrubs and biological soil crusts are important ecosystem engineers. They have the ability to enrich ecosystems with cations and anions. The mechanisms of redistribution depend on soil cover and amount of precipitation and are, contradictory to earlier results, not independent from shrub species.

  20. Marine Biology Activities. Ocean Related Curriculum Activities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pauls, John

    The ocean affects all of our lives. Therefore, awareness of and information about the interconnections between humans and oceans are prerequisites to making sound decisions for the future. Project ORCA (Ocean Related Curriculum Activities) has developed interdisciplinary curriculum materials designed to meet the needs of students and teachers…

  1. Biological soil crusts in subtropical China and their influence on initial soil erosion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seitz, Steffen; Goebes, Philipp; Kühn, Peter; Scholten, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    Soil is one of the most valuable resources we have on our planet. The erosion of this resource is a major environmental problem, in particular in subtropical China where high rainfall intensity causes severe and continuous soil losses. One of the main mechanisms controlling soil erosion is surface coverage, typically by vegetation, litter, stones and biological soil crusts (BSCs). BSCs play significant functional roles in soil systems, such as accelerating soil formation, changing water and nutrient cycling rates, enhancing soil stability and thus preventing erosion by wind or water. In initial ecosystems, cyanobacteria, algae, fungi, mosses and lichens are the first organisms to colonize the substrate; they form a biological crust within the first millimetres of the surface. BSCs and their effect on erosion are rarely mentioned in literature and most of the work done focussed on arid and semi-arid environments. This study aims to investigate the role of BSCs controlling the amount of runoff generated and sediment detached during soil erosion events in an initial ecosystem in subtropical China. The study took place on a deforested experimental site (BEF China) near Xingangshan, Jiangxi Province, PR China. We used a total number of 350 runoff plots (ROP, 40cmx40cm) to measure sediment discharge and surface runoff. BSC cover in each ROP was determined photogrammetrically in 4 time steps (autumn 2011, spring 2012, summer 2012 and summer 2013). Perpendicular images were taken and then processed to measure the coverage of BSCs using a 1 cm² digital grid overlay. Additionally BSCs were sampled in the field and identified by their taxonomy. In our ROPs we found 65 different moos, algae and lichen species, as well as cyanobacteria's. Mean BSC cover per ROP in 2013 was 17 % with a maximum of 62 % and a minimum of 0 %. Compared to stone cover with 3 %, our findings highlight the role of BSC in soil erosion processes. The total BSC covered area is slightly decreasing since our first measurements in 2011. Further results show that BSCs have an influence on sediment discharge and runoff volume and there is a considerable link to tree and shrub growth in our sampling area. BSCs disappear as trees and shrubs grow and hide them from sunlight.

  2. Rain pulse response of soil CO2 exchange by biological soil crusts and grasslands of the semiarid Colorado Plateau, United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bowling, David R.; Grote, E.E.; Belnap, J.

    2011-01-01

    Biological activity in arid grasslands is strongly dependent on moisture. We examined gas exchange of biological soil crusts (biocrusts), the underlying soil biotic community, and the belowground respiratory activity of C3 and C4 grasses over 2 years in southeast Utah, USA. We used soil surface CO2 flux and the amount and carbon isotope composition (?13C) of soil CO2 as indicators of belowground and soil surface activity. Soil respiration was always below 2 ?mol m-2s-1 and highly responsive to soil moisture. When moisture was available, warm spring and summer temperature was associated with higher fluxes. Moisture pulses led to enhanced soil respiration lasting for a week or more. Biological response to rain was not simply dependent on the amount of rain, but also depended on antecedent conditions (prior moisture pulses). The short-term temperature sensitivity of respiration was very dynamic, showing enhancement within 1-2 days of rain, and diminishing each day afterward. Carbon uptake occurred by cyanobacterially dominated biocrusts following moisture pulses in fall and winter, with a maximal net carbon uptake of 0.5 ?mol m-2s-1, although typically the biocrusts were a net carbon source. No difference was detected in the seasonal activity of C3 and C4 grasses, contrasting with studies from other arid regions (where warm- versus cool-season activity is important), and highlighting the unique biophysical environment of this cold desert. Contrary to other studies, the ?13C of belowground respiration in the rooting zone of each photosynthetic type did not reflect the ?13C of C3 and C4 physiology.

  3. Rain pulse response of soil CO2 exchange by biological soil crusts and grasslands of the semiarid Colorado Plateau, United States

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowling, D. R.; Grote, E. E.; Belnap, J.

    2011-09-01

    Biological activity in arid grasslands is strongly dependent on moisture. We examined gas exchange of biological soil crusts (biocrusts), the underlying soil biotic community, and the belowground respiratory activity of C3 and C4 grasses over 2 years in southeast Utah, USA. We used soil surface CO2 flux and the amount and carbon isotope composition (?13C) of soil CO2 as indicators of belowground and soil surface activity. Soil respiration was always below 2 ?mol m-2 s-1 and highly responsive to soil moisture. When moisture was available, warm spring and summer temperature was associated with higher fluxes. Moisture pulses led to enhanced soil respiration lasting for a week or more. Biological response to rain was not simply dependent on the amount of rain, but also depended on antecedent conditions (prior moisture pulses). The short-term temperature sensitivity of respiration was very dynamic, showing enhancement within 1-2 days of rain, and diminishing each day afterward. Carbon uptake occurred by cyanobacterially dominated biocrusts following moisture pulses in fall and winter, with a maximal net carbon uptake of 0.5 ?mol m-2 s-1, although typically the biocrusts were a net carbon source. No difference was detected in the seasonal activity of C3 and C4 grasses, contrasting with studies from other arid regions (where warm- versus cool-season activity is important), and highlighting the unique biophysical environment of this cold desert. Contrary to other studies, the ?13C of belowground respiration in the rooting zone of each photosynthetic type did not reflect the ?13C of C3 and C4 physiology.

  4. Perylenequinones: Isolation, Synthesis, and Biological Activity

    PubMed Central

    Mulrooey, Carol A.; O'Brien, Erin M.; Morgan, Barbara J.

    2013-01-01

    The perylenequinones are a novel class of natural products characterized by pentacyclic conjugated chromophore giving rise to photoactivity. Potentially useful light-activated biological activity, targeting protein kinase C (PKC), has been identified for several of the natural products. Recently discovered new members of this class of compound, as well as several related phenanthroperylenequinones, are reviewed. Natural product modifications that improve biological profiles, and avenues for the total synthesis of analogs, which are not available from the natural product series, are outlined. An overview of structure/function relationships is provided. PMID:24039544

  5. Resistance of Undisturbed Soil Microbiomes to Ceftriaxone Indicates Extended Spectrum β-Lactamase Activity.

    PubMed

    Gatica, Joao; Yang, Kun; Pagaling, Eulyn; Jurkevitch, Edouard; Yan, Tao; Cytryn, Eddie

    2015-01-01

    Emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance, and specifically resistance to third generation cephalosporins associated with extended spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) activity, is one of the greatest epidemiological challenges of our time. In this study we addressed the impact of the third generation cephalosporin ceftriaxone on microbial activity and bacterial community composition of two physically and chemically distinct undisturbed soils in highly regulated microcosm experiments. Surprisingly, periodical irrigation of the soils with clinical doses of ceftriaxone did not affect their microbial activity; and only moderately impacted the microbial diversity (α and β) of the two soils. Corresponding slurry experiments demonstrated that the antibiotic capacity of ceftriaxone rapidly diminished in the presence of soil, and ∼70% of this inactivation could be explained by biological activity. The biological nature of ceftriaxone degradation in soil was supported by microcosm experiments that amended model Escherichia coli strains to sterile and non-sterile soils in the presence and absence of ceftriaxone and by the ubiquitous presence of ESBL genes (blaTEM, blaCTX-M, and blaOXA) in soil DNA extracts. Collectively, these results suggest that the resistance of soil microbiomes to ceftriaxone stems from biological activity and even more, from broad-spectrum β-lactamase activity; raising questions regarding the scope and clinical implications of ESBLs in soil microbiomes. PMID:26617578

  6. Resistance of Undisturbed Soil Microbiomes to Ceftriaxone Indicates Extended Spectrum β-Lactamase Activity

    PubMed Central

    Gatica, Joao; Yang, Kun; Pagaling, Eulyn; Jurkevitch, Edouard; Yan, Tao; Cytryn, Eddie

    2015-01-01

    Emergence and spread of antibiotic resistance, and specifically resistance to third generation cephalosporins associated with extended spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) activity, is one of the greatest epidemiological challenges of our time. In this study we addressed the impact of the third generation cephalosporin ceftriaxone on microbial activity and bacterial community composition of two physically and chemically distinct undisturbed soils in highly regulated microcosm experiments. Surprisingly, periodical irrigation of the soils with clinical doses of ceftriaxone did not affect their microbial activity; and only moderately impacted the microbial diversity (α and β) of the two soils. Corresponding slurry experiments demonstrated that the antibiotic capacity of ceftriaxone rapidly diminished in the presence of soil, and ∼70% of this inactivation could be explained by biological activity. The biological nature of ceftriaxone degradation in soil was supported by microcosm experiments that amended model Escherichia coli strains to sterile and non-sterile soils in the presence and absence of ceftriaxone and by the ubiquitous presence of ESBL genes (blaTEM, blaCTX-M, and blaOXA) in soil DNA extracts. Collectively, these results suggest that the resistance of soil microbiomes to ceftriaxone stems from biological activity and even more, from broad-spectrum β-lactamase activity; raising questions regarding the scope and clinical implications of ESBLs in soil microbiomes. PMID:26617578

  7. The effect of model soil contamination with Cr, Cu, Ni, and Pb on the biological properties of soils in the dry steppe and semidesert regions of southern Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolesnikov, S. I.; Spivakova, N. A.; Kazeev, K. Sh.

    2011-09-01

    Model soil contamination with Cr, Cu, Ni, and Pb in the dry steppes and semideserts of southern Russia has worsened the biological soil properties. With respect to the degree of deterioration of the biological properties, the soils can be arranged in the following sequence: dark chestnut soils > chestnut soils > light chestnut soils > brown semidesert soils > sandy brown semidesert soils. The sequence of metal oxides according to the adverse effect on the biological soil properties is as follows: CrO3 > CuO ≥ PbO ≥ NiO.

  8. Emerging Patterns In The Isotopic Composition Of Soil CO2 Concentrations, Soil CO2 Production, And Soil-Atmosphere CO2 Exchange At The Watershed Scale: On The Intersection Between Hydrology And Biology In The Critical Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riveros-Iregui, D. A.; Liang, L.; Lorenzo, T. M.

    2014-12-01

    Stable isotopes are commonly used to understand how physical and biological processes mediate the exchange of carbon between terrestrial ecosystems and the atmosphere. Numerous studies have described fundamental relationships between environmental variables, the carbon isotopic composition (?13C) of recently assimilated sugars in plants, litter, soil carbon, or recently respired CO2. However, studies that examine the spatial variability of the 13C content of forest soils at the landscape scale are lacking. We report on measurements of the carbon isotopic composition of soil CO2 concentrations (?13CC), soil CO2 production (?13CP), and soil-atmosphere CO2 exchange (?13CD) across a subalpine forest of the northern Rocky Mountains of Montana over two growing seasons. We evaluate the variability of these measurements across different landscape positions. Our analysis demonstrates that soil moisture and the lateral redistribution of soil water are strong predictors of the spatial variability of ?13CC, ?13CP, and ?13CD at the watershed scale. We suggest that there are concomitant yet independent effects of soil water on physical (i.e., soil gas diffusivity) and biological (i.e., photosynthetic activity) processes that mediate the 13C composition of forest soils. We show systematic spatial variability in the ?13C of forest soils at the landscape scale that can be useful to accurately predict and model land-atmosphere CO2 exchange over complex terrain.

  9. Stereochemical Assignment of Strigolactone Analogues Confirms Their Selective Biological Activity.

    PubMed

    Artuso, Emma; Ghibaudi, Elena; Lace, Beatrice; Marabello, Domenica; Vinciguerra, Daniele; Lombardi, Chiara; Koltai, Hinanit; Kapulnik, Yoram; Novero, Mara; Occhiato, Ernesto G; Scarpi, Dina; Parisotto, Stefano; Deagostino, Annamaria; Venturello, Paolo; Mayzlish-Gati, Einav; Bier, Ariel; Prandi, Cristina

    2015-11-25

    Strigolactones (SLs) are new plant hormones with various developmental functions. They are also soil signaling chemicals that are required for establishing beneficial mycorrhizal plant/fungus symbiosis. In addition, SLs play an essential role in inducing seed germination in root-parasitic weeds, which are one of the seven most serious biological threats to food security. There are around 20 natural SLs that are produced by plants in very low quantities. Therefore, most of the knowledge on SL signal transduction and associated molecular events is based on the application of synthetic analogues. Stereochemistry plays a crucial role in the structure-activity relationship of SLs, as compounds with an unnatural D-ring configuration may induce biological effects that are unrelated to SLs. We have synthesized a series of strigolactone analogues, whose absolute configuration has been elucidated and related with their biological activity, thus confirming the high specificity of the response. Analogues bearing the R-configured butenolide moiety showed enhanced biological activity, which highlights the importance of this stereochemical motif. PMID:26502774

  10. Improved appreciation of the functioning and importance of biological soil crusts in Europe: the Soil Crust International Project (SCIN).

    PubMed

    Bdel, Burkhard; Colesie, Claudia; Green, T G Allan; Grube, Martin; Lzaro Suau, Roberto; Loewen-Schneider, Katharina; Maier, Stefanie; Peer, Thomas; Pintado, Ana; Raggio, Jos; Ruprecht, Ulrike; Sancho, Leopoldo G; Schroeter, Burkhard; Trk, Roman; Weber, Bettina; Wedin, Mats; Westberg, Martin; Williams, Laura; Zheng, Lingjuan

    2014-01-01

    Here we report details of the European research initiative "Soil Crust International" (SCIN) focusing on the biodiversity of biological soil crusts (BSC, composed of bacteria, algae, lichens, and bryophytes) and on functional aspects in their specific environment. Known as the so-called "colored soil lichen community" (Bunte Erdflechtengesellschaft), these BSCs occur all over Europe, extending into subtropical and arid regions. Our goal is to study the uniqueness of these BSCs on the regional scale and investigate how this community can cope with large macroclimatic differences. One of the major aims of this project is to develop biodiversity conservation and sustainable management strategies for European BSCs. To achieve this, we established a latitudinal transect from the Great Alvar of land, Sweden in the north over Gssenheim, Central Germany and Hochtor in the Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria down to the badlands of Tabernas, Spain in the south. The transect stretches over 20 latitude and 2,300m in altitude, including natural (Hochtor, Tabernas) and semi-natural sites that require maintenance such as by grazing activities (land, Gssenheim). At all four sites BSC coverage exceeded 30% of the referring landscape, with the alpine site (Hochtor) reaching the highest cyanobacterial cover and the two semi-natural sites (land, Gssenheim) the highest bryophyte cover. Although BSCs of the four European sites share a common set of bacteria, algae (including cyanobacteria) lichens and bryophytes, first results indicate not only climate specific additions of species, but also genetic/phenotypic uniqueness of species between the four sites. While macroclimatic conditions are rather different, microclimatic conditions and partly soil properties seem fairly homogeneous between the four sites, with the exception of water availability. Continuous activity monitoring of photosystem II revealed the BSCs of the Spanish site as the least active in terms of photosynthetic active periods. PMID:24954978

  11. The biological activity of silicon carbide whiskers

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, N.F.

    1989-01-01

    Size characteristics of SiC whiskers are similar to asbestos and contain potentially carcinogenic long thin fibers. Size distribution suggests that it is highly respirable, with majority of particles having diameters <3.0 [mu]m. Cytotoxic activity of SiC whiskers in cultured cells is [ge] than that of crocidolite asbestos. Inhalation exposures are needed to further delineate the biological activity; while SiC whiskers were as or more cytotoxic than crocidolite, JM Code 100 also displays such activity but results in no increased risk of lung cancer, pulmonary fibrosis or mesothelioma. PRD-166, a coarse continuous glass filament, displays little in vitro biological activity. It is recommended that SiC whiskers be treated as asbestos, and to continue investigating the potential health effects of SiC whiskers, in particular conducting animal experiments with acute and chronic inhalation exposures. 17 refs., 11 tabs., 18 figs.

  12. [Biologically Active Peptides of King Crab Hepatopancreas].

    PubMed

    Bogdanov, V V; Berezin, B B; Il'ina, A P; Yamskova, V P; Yamskov, I A

    2015-01-01

    Substances of a peptide nature isolated from the hepatopancreas of the king crab Paralithodes camtschaticus exhibited physicochemical properties and membranotropic and specific activities similar to those of membranotropic homeostatic tissue-specific bioregulators previously found in different mammalian and plant tissues. Their biological effect on vertebrate tissues was demonstrated on a model of roller organotypic cultivation of Pleurodeles waltl newt liver tissue. PMID:26353409

  13. Harnessing the Biological Activity of Natural Products

    Cancer.gov

    Researchers have been intrigued by the potent and beneficial biological activity shown by some natural products and are testing ways to incorporate them into standard and experimental cancer treatment regimens, both to enhance the anticancer effects of therapy and reduce side effects.

  14. Impacts of off-road vehicles on nitrogen cycles in biological soil crusts: Resistance in different U.S. deserts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.

    2002-01-01

    Biological soil crusts are an important component of desert ecosystems, as they influence soil stability and fertility. This study examined and compared the short-term vehicular impacts on lichen cover and nitrogenase activity (NA) of biological soil crusts. Experimental disturbance was applied to different types of soil in regions throughout the western U.S. (Great Basin, Colorado Plateau, Sonoran, Chihuahuan, and Mojave deserts). Results show that pre-disturbance cover of soil lichens is significantly correlated with the silt content of soils, and negatively correlated with sand and clay. While disturbance appeared to reduce NA at all sites, differences were statistically significant at only 12 of the 26 sites. Cool desert sites showed a greater decline than hot desert sites, which may indicate non-heterocystic cyanobacterial species are more susceptible to disturbance than non-heterocystic species. Sandy soils showed greater reduction of NA as sand content increased, while fine-textured soils showed a greater decline as sand content increased. At all sites, higher NA before the disturbance resulted in less impact to NA post-disturbance. These results may be useful in predicting the impacts of off-road vehicles in different regions and different soils. ?? 2002 Published by Elsevier Science Ltd.

  15. Influence of development stage and disturbance of physical and biological soil crusts on soil water erosion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamizo, S.; Cantn, Y.; Lzaro, R.; Sol-Benet, A.; Calvo-Cases, A.; Miralles, I.; Domingo, F.

    2009-04-01

    Most soils exposed to rainfall are prone to sealing and crusting processes causing physical soil crusts (PSCs). When climate and soil stability conditions are suitable, PSCs can be consolidated by a complex community consisting of cyanobacteria, bacteria, green algae, microfungi, lichens and bryophytes, which are collectively known as biological soil crust (BSC). The influence of soil crusts on erosion processes is complex: crusts may reduce detachment, increasing soil stability and protecting soil against raindrop impact, although that protection will depend on the type of soil crust and the stage of development; they can also build up runoff, suggesting that downstream erosion may actually be increased or favoured water harvesting to vegetated areas. On the other hand, BSCs have been demonstrated to be very vulnerable to disturbance which in turn can lead to accelerate soil erosion and other forms of land degradation. Incorporation of the response of different type of soil crusts and the effects of their disturbance is highly likely to improve the prediction of runoff and water erosion models in arid and semi-arid catchments. The objective of this work is to analyse the erosional response of PSCs and BSCs in different stages of their development and subject to distinct disturbances when extreme rainfalls intensities are applied at plot scale in semiarid environments. Small plots on the most representative crust types, corresponding to different stages of crust development, in two semiarid ecosystems in SE Spain, El Cautivo (in the Tabernas Desert) and Amoladeras (in the Natural Park Cabo de Gata-Njar), were selected and three disturbance treatments were applied on each crust type: a) no disturbance (control), b) trampling, stepping 100 times over the crust and c) scraping. Two consecutive rainfall simulation experiments (50 mm/h rainfall intensity) were carried out on each plot: the first on dry soil and the second, 30 minutes later, on wet soil conditions. Samples of runoff were collected regularly during the rainfall simulation and sediments in runoff extracted later in laboratory. Erosion rates were significantly different at both sites, being lower in Amoladeras than in El Cautivo due to a flatter topography and a higher infiltration capacity of the sandy soils with higher organic matter content. There were not significant differences on total erosion rates between the first and the second rainfall event, as consequence of the increase of runoff under wet conditions. In El Cautivo, the erosion rates significantly decreased as crust development stage increased. However, in Amoladeras, the erosion was low in all crust types and there were not significant differences on erosion rates among the crust development stages. Among treatments, in El Cautivo, scraping and trampling promoted significant higher erosion rates than undisturbed crust, but no significant differences were found between both treatments, except for the lichen-dominated crust. In Amoladeras, no significant differences on erosion rates between the undisturbed and the trampled crust were found since in this area trampling did not have an important effect. Although the removal of the crust in semiarid environments, at local scale, always increased erosion, the effects of crust disturbance on erosion varied depending on the ecosystem, with stronger erosional effects in badland areas with a silty substrate and steep topography than in areas with a flat topography and a coarser soil texture.

  16. Obtaining edaphic biostimulants/biofertilizers from different sewage sludges. Effects on soil biological properties.

    PubMed

    Rodrguez-Morgado, Bruno; Gmez, Isidoro; Parrado, Juan; Garca-Martnez, Ana M; Aragn, Carlos; Tejada, Manuel

    2015-09-01

    We studied the influence of six edaphic biostimulants/biofertilizers (BSs) manufactured by the pH-stat method from different sewage sludge (SS): SS1 (an anaerobic mature sludge, one year old), SS2 (an aerobic young sludge, without maturation) and SS3 (an aerobic mature sludge, four months old), not previously autoclaved (A) and autoclaved (B), by analysing their effects on soil biological properties. Soil enzymatic activities were measured at 1, 3, 5, 7, 15, 30 and 60 days of the incubation period, whereas the 16S rDNA-DGGE profiles were determined at 0, 5 and 60 days. The enzymatic activities were significantly stimulated. The highest stimulation was found in the B2 treatment followed by B3, A2, A3, B1 and A1 treatments. Increasing the number of lower molecular weight proteins in the BS enhances the stimulation of soil enzymatic activities. The application of BS caused at 5 days of the incubation period temporal variations in the soil bacterial community structure. PMID:25732482

  17. Ice nucleation activity in the widespread soil fungus Mortierella alpina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frhlich-Nowoisky, Janine; Hill, Thomas C. J.; Pummer, Bernhard G.; Yordanova, Petya; Franc, Gary D.; Pschl, Ulrich

    2015-04-01

    Biological residues in soil dust are a potentially strong source of atmospheric ice nucleators (IN). However, the sources and characteristics of biological - in particular, fungal - IN in soil dust have not been characterized. By analysis of the culturable fungi in topsoils, from a range of different land use and ecosystem types in south-east Wyoming, we found ice nucleation active (INA, i.e., inducing ice formation in the probed range of temperature and concentration) fungi to be both widespread and abundant, particularly in soils with recent inputs of decomposable organic matter. For example, in harvested and ploughed sugar beet and potato fields, and in the organic horizon beneath Lodgepole pine forest, their relative abundances and concentrations among the cultivable fungi were 25% (8 x 103 CFU g-1), 17% (4.8 x 103 CFU g-1) and 17% (4 x 103 CFU g-1), respectively. Across all investigated soils, 8% (2.9 x 103 CFU g-1) of fungal isolates were INA. All INA isolates initiated freezing at -5 C to -6 C and all belonged to a single zygomycotic species, Mortierella alpina (Mortierellales, Mortierellomycotina). By contrast, the handful of fungal species so far reported as INA all belong within the Ascomycota or Basidiomycota phyla. Mortierella alpina is known to be saprobic (utilizing non-living organic matter), widespread in soil and present in air and rain. Sequencing of the ITS region and the gene for ?-linolenic elongase revealed four distinct clades, affiliated to different soil types. The IN produced by M. alpina seem to be extracellular proteins of 100-300 kDa in size which are not anchored in the fungal cell wall. Ice nucleating fungal mycelium will ramify topsoils and probably also release cell-free IN into it. If these IN survive decomposition or are adsorbed onto mineral surfaces, these small cell-free IN might contribute to the as yet uncharacterized pool of atmospheric IN released by soils as dusts.

  18. Benzocoumarins: isolation, synthesis, and biological activities.

    PubMed

    Lv, Hai-Ning; Tu, Peng-Fei; Jiang, Yong

    2014-01-01

    Benzocoumarins are coumarins with a phenyl group bonded to 3,4-, 5,6-, 6,7-, or 7,8-positions. Over the past years, significant efforts have been made not only to isolate the novel structural analogs of benzocoumarins with prominent bioactivities but also to design new synthetic methods to synthesize benzocoumarins with better or novel biological properties. The aim of this review is to provide the readers with an overview of the research progress of benzocoumarins from 1953 to May 2014, covering its isolation, synthesis, and biological activities. PMID:24958219

  19. Application of activated sludge to purify urban soils of Baku city from oil contamination

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Babaev, M. P.; Nadzhafova, S. I.; Ibragimov, A. G.

    2015-07-01

    A biopreparation inducing oil destruction and increasing the biological activity of soils was developed on the basis of activated sludge. Its oxidative activity towards hydrocarbons was studied. The application of this biopreparation to oil-contaminated soil increased the population density of microorganisms, including destroyers of hydrocarbons, and accelerated oil decomposition. The degree of destruction of oil and oil products in the case of a single treatment of the soil with this biopreparation comprised 30 to 50% within 60 days. The presence of cellulose-decomposing microorganisms in this biopreparation also favored an accelerated decomposition of plant substances, including plant litter and sawdust applied to the urban soils as an adsorbent.

  20. Loranthus micranthus Linn.: Biological Activities and Phytochemistry

    PubMed Central

    Zorofchian Moghadamtousi, Soheil; Hajrezaei, Maryam; Abdul Kadir, Habsah

    2013-01-01

    Loranthus micranthus Linn. is a medicinal plant from the Loranthaceae family commonly known as an eastern Nigeria species of the African mistletoe and is widely used in folkloric medicine to cure various ailments and diseases. It is semiparasitic plant because of growing on various host trees and shrubs and absorbing mineral nutrition and water from respective host. Hence, the phytochemicals and biological activities of L. micranthus demonstrated strong host and harvesting period dependency. The leaves have been proved to possess immunomodulatory, antidiabetic, antimicrobial, antihypertensive, antioxidant, antidiarrhoeal, and hypolipidemic activities. This review summarizes the information and findings concerning the current knowledge on the biological activities, pharmacological properties, toxicity, and chemical constituents of Loranthus micranthus. PMID:24109490

  1. Loranthus micranthus Linn.: Biological Activities and Phytochemistry.

    PubMed

    Zorofchian Moghadamtousi, Soheil; Hajrezaei, Maryam; Abdul Kadir, Habsah; Zandi, Keivan

    2013-01-01

    Loranthus micranthus Linn. is a medicinal plant from the Loranthaceae family commonly known as an eastern Nigeria species of the African mistletoe and is widely used in folkloric medicine to cure various ailments and diseases. It is semiparasitic plant because of growing on various host trees and shrubs and absorbing mineral nutrition and water from respective host. Hence, the phytochemicals and biological activities of L. micranthus demonstrated strong host and harvesting period dependency. The leaves have been proved to possess immunomodulatory, antidiabetic, antimicrobial, antihypertensive, antioxidant, antidiarrhoeal, and hypolipidemic activities. This review summarizes the information and findings concerning the current knowledge on the biological activities, pharmacological properties, toxicity, and chemical constituents of Loranthus micranthus. PMID:24109490

  2. Cyanobacterial Diversity in Biological Soil Crusts along a Precipitation Gradient, Northwest Negev Desert, Israel.

    PubMed

    Hagemann, Martin; Henneberg, Manja; Felde, Vincent J M N L; Drahorad, Sylvie L; Berkowicz, Simon M; Felix-Henningsen, Peter; Kaplan, Aaron

    2015-07-01

    Cyanobacteria occur worldwide but play an important role in the formation and primary activity of biological soil crusts (BSCs) in arid and semi-arid ecosystems. The cyanobacterial diversity in BSCs of the northwest Negev desert of Israel was surveyed at three fixed sampling stations situated along a precipitation gradient in the years 2010 to 2012. The three stations also are characterized by marked differences in soil features such as soil carbon, nitrogen, or electrical conductivity. The cyanobacterial biodiversity was analyzed by sequencing inserts of clone libraries harboring partial 16S rRNA gene sequences obtained with cyanobacteria-specific primers. Filamentous, non-diazotrophic strains (subsection III), particularly Microcoleus-like, dominated the cyanobacterial community (30% proportion) in all years. Specific cyanobacterial groups showed increased (e.g., Chroococcidiopsis, Leptolyngbya, and Nostoc strains) or decreased (e.g., unicellular strains belonging to the subsection I and Scytonema strains) abundances with declining water availability at the most arid, southern station, whereas many cyanobacterial strains were frequently found in the soils of all three stations. The cyanobacterial diversity at the three sampling stations appears dependent on the available precipitation, whereas the differences in soil chemistry were of lower importance. PMID:25408227

  3. Phenol oxidase activity in secondary transformed peat-moorsh soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sty?a, K.; Szajdak, L.

    2009-04-01

    The chemical composition of peat depends on the geobotanical conditions of its formation and on the depth of sampling. The evolution of hydrogenic peat soils is closely related to the genesis of peat and to the changes in water conditions. Due to a number of factors including oscillation of ground water level, different redox potential, changes of aerobic conditions, different plant communities, and root exudes, and products of the degradation of plant remains, peat-moorsh soils may undergo a process of secondary transformation conditions (Sokolowska et al. 2005; Szajdak et al. 2007). Phenol oxidase is one of the few enzymes able to degrade recalcitrant phenolic materials as lignin (Freeman et al. 2004). Phenol oxidase enzymes catalyze polyphenol oxidation in the presence of oxygen (O2) by removing phenolic hydrogen or hydrogenes to from radicals or quinines. These products undergo nucleophilic addition reactions in the presence or absence of free - NH2 group with the eventual production of humic acid-like polymers. The presence of phenol oxidase in soil environments is important in the formation of humic substances a desirable process because the carbon is stored in a stable form (Matocha et al. 2004). The investigations were carried out on the transect of peatland 4.5 km long, located in the Agroecological Landscape Park host D. Chlapowski in Turew (40 km South-West of Pozna?, West Polish Lowland). The sites of investigation were located along Wysko? ditch. The following material was taken from four chosen sites marked as Zbechy, Bridge, Shelterbelt and Hirudo in two layers: cartel (0-50cm) and cattle (50-100cm). The object of this study was to characterize the biochemical properties by the determination of the phenol oxidize activity in two layers of the four different peat-moors soils used as meadow. The phenol oxidase activity was determined spectrophotometrically by measuring quinone formation at ?max=525 nm with catechol as substrate by method of Perucci et al. (2000). In peat the highest activities of phenol oxidase was observed in the combinations marked as Shelterbelt and whereas the lowest - in Zbechy, Bridge and Hirudo. Activities of this enzyme in peat ranged from 15.35 to 38.33 ?mol h-1g d.m soil. Increased activities of phenol oxidase have been recorded on the depth 50-100cm - catotelm (21.74-38.33 ?mol h-1g d.m soil) in comparison with the depth 0-50cm - acrotelm (15.35-28.32 ?mol h-1g d.m soil). References Freeman, C., Ostle N.J., Fener, N., Kang H. 2004. A regulatory role for phenol oxidase during decomposition in peatlands. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 36, 1663-1667. Matocha Ch.J., Haszler G.R., Grove J.H. 2004. Nitrogen fertilization suppresses soil phenol oxidase enzyme activity in no-tillage systems. Soil Science, 169/10, 708-714. Perucci P., Casucci C., Dumontet S. 2000. An improved method to evaluate the o-diphenol oxidase activity of soil. Soil Biology and Biochemistry, 32, 1927-1933. Sokolowska Z., Szajdak L., Matyka-Sarzy?ska D. 2005. Impact of the degree of secondary transformation on amid-base properties of organic compounds in mucks. Geoderma, 127, 80-90. Szajdak L., Szczepa?ski M., Bogacz A. 2007. Impact of secondary transformation of peat-moorsh soils on the decrease of nitrogen and carbon compounds in ground water. Agronomy Research, 5/2, 189-200.

  4. Glycosides from Marine Sponges (Porifera, Demospongiae): Structures, Taxonomical Distribution, Biological Activities and Biological Roles

    PubMed Central

    Kalinin, Vladimir I.; Ivanchina, Natalia V.; Krasokhin, Vladimir B.; Makarieva, Tatyana N.; Stonik, Valentin A.

    2012-01-01

    Literature data about glycosides from sponges (Porifera, Demospongiae) are reviewed. Structural diversity, biological activities, taxonomic distribution and biological functions of these natural products are discussed. PMID:23015769

  5. The potential roles of biological soil crusts in dryland hydrologic cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belnap, Jayne

    2006-10-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are the dominant living cover in many drylands of the world. They possess many features that can influence different aspects of local hydrologic cycles, including soil porosity, absorptivity, roughness, aggregate stability, texture, pore formation, and water retention. The influence of biological soil crusts on these factors depends on their internal and external structure, which varies with climate, soil, and disturbance history. This paper presents the different types of biological soil crusts, discusses how crust type likely influences various aspects of the hydrologic cycle, and reviews what is known and not known about the influence of biological crusts on sediment production and water infiltration versus runoff in various drylands around the world. Most studies examining the effect of biological soil crusts on local hydrology are done by comparing undisturbed sites with those recently disturbed by the researchers. Unfortunately, this greatly complicates interpretation of the results. Applied disturbances alter many soil features such as soil texture, roughness, aggregate stability, physical crusting, porosity, and bulk density in ways that would not necessarily be the same if crusts were not naturally present. Combined, these studies show little agreement on how biological crusts affect water infiltration or runoff. However, when studies are separated by biological crust type and utilize naturally occurring differences among these types, results indicate that biological crusts in hyperarid regions reduce infiltration and increase runoff, have mixed effects in arid regions, and increase infiltration and reduce runoff in semiarid cool and cold drylands. However, more studies are needed before broad generalizations can be made on how biological crusts affect infiltration and runoff. We especially need studies that control for sub-surface soil features such as bulk density, micro- and macropores, and biological crust structure. Unlike the mixed effects of biological crusts on infiltration and runoff among regions, almost all studies show that biological crusts reduce sediment production, regardless of crust or dryland type.

  6. Short term recovery of soil biological functions in a new vineyard cultivated in organic farming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costantini, Edoardo; Agnelli, Alessandro; Fabiani, Arturo; Gagnarli, Elena; Mocali, Stefano; Priori, Simone; Simoni, Sauro; Valboa, Giuseppe

    2014-05-01

    Deep earthwork activities carried out before vineyard plantation completely upset soil profile and characteristics. The resulting soil features are often much more similar to the underlying substratum than original soil profile. The time needed to recover soil functions is ecologically relevant and affects vine phenology and grape yield, particularly in organic viticulture. The general aim of this research work was to investigate the time needed to recover soil functions after the earthworks made before vine plantation. This study compared for a four years period physical and chemical properties, microbial and mesofauna communities, in new and old vineyards, cultivated on the same soil type. The experiment was conducted in a farm of the Chianti Classico district (Central Italy), on hills of high altitude (400-500 m a.s.l.) on clayey-calcareous flysches, with stony and calcareous soils (Haplic Cambisol (Calcaric, Skeletic)). The reference vine cultivar was Sangiovese. The older vineyard was planted in 2000, after slope reshaping by bulldozing and back hoe ploughing down to about 0.8-1.0 m. The new vineyard was planted in 2011 after an equivalent earthwork carried out in the summer of 2009. Both vineyards were organically managed and only compost at the rate of 1,000 kg ha-1 -a was added every year. The new vineyard was periodically cultivated by mechanical tillage, while the older only at alternate rows. Soil samples from the first 15 cm depth were collected in 4 replicates in the younger as well as in the older vineyard during the springtime of 2010-2013; in the older vineyard, two samples were from the periodically cultivated swaths and two under permanent grass cover. Samples were analysed for physical (particle size, field capacity, wilting point), chemical (pH, electrical conductivity, lime, active lime, organic carbon, total nitrogen), microbiological (soil respiration, microbial biomass, DGGE), and mesofauna features (abundance, taxa richness, BSQ index and soil biological classes). Physical soil characteristics remained unchanged after the first year from the earthworks and did not change under grass cover. Chemical analysis only indicated a significant effect of earthworks. Over the 2010-2013 period, the new vineyard showed a slight increase of TOC and total N contents; as compared to the old vineyard, it averaged lower TOC and total N, and higher CaCO3 contents, suggesting still evolving equilibrium conditions. Microarthropod analysis showed significant different abundances and communities' structures both by management system and by year, increasing where the land use pressure was reduced by permanent grass cover and along with the aging of vineyard. Though the euedaphic forms, well adapted to soil life, were always rare. Microbiological analysis showed a different structure of eubacterial communities and a lower microbial activity in the new vineyard, especially during 2010-2012. In contrast, significant differences were not observed between the two vineyards in 2013, and grass cover effect was controversial. To sum up, the consequence of deep earthworks on chemical and biological properties were still evident after four years from planting and more time was needed to recover soil functions. Permanent grass cover did not always show a consistent positive effect.

  7. Biological activities of selected basidiomycetes from Yemen.

    PubMed

    Al-Fatimi, M; Schrder, G; Kreisel, H; Lindequist, U

    2013-03-01

    In a previous paper we demonstrated the results of biological screening of Yemeni basidiomycetes. The present study was aimed to investigate the antimicrobial and the antioxidant activity of further basidiomycetes collected in Yemen. Dichloromethane, methanol and aqueous extracts of the fruiting bodies of 25 species were screened in vitro for their antibacterial activities against three Gram-positive bacteria (Staphyloccocus aureus, Bacillus subtilis, Micrococcus flavus) and two Gram-negative bacteria (Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa), against six human fungal pathogens (Candida albicans, Candida krusei, Aspergillus fumigatus, Mucor sp., Microsporum gypseum, Trichophyton mentagrophytes) and against one non human pathogenic fungus (Candida maltosa). The results indicated that 75 extracts exhibited activity against one or more of the bacteria. The methanol extracts of Agaricus cf. bernardii, Agrocybe pediades, Chlorophyllum molybdites, Coriolopsis polyzona, Ganoderma xylonoides, Pycnoporus sanguineus, Trametes lactinea and Trametes cingulata showed activity against all tested bacteria. The highest antibacterial activity was exhibited by methanol extracts from Chlorophyllum molybdites, Ganoderma xylonoides and Trametes cingulata and Agaricus cf. bernardii, Agrocybe pediades, Coriolopsis polyzona, Pycnoporus sanguineus and Trametes lactinea. The methanol extracts of Chlorophyllum molybdites, Ganoderma xylonoides and Pycnoporus sanguineus showed considerable antifungal activities against the tested fungal strains. Strong antioxidative effects employing the DPPH assay were exhibited by methanol extracts from Chlorophyllum molybdites, Ganoderma xylonoides, Hexagonia velutina, Pycnoporus sanguineus, Trametes lactinea and Trametes cingulata. Our previous and presented studies about 48 basidiomycetes collected in Yemen provide evidence that basidiomycetes from the Arabic region so far should attract more attention as potential source for new biologically active agents. PMID:23556343

  8. Biologically active compounds from Aphyllophorales (polypore) fungi.

    PubMed

    Zjawiony, Jordan K

    2004-02-01

    This review describes biologically active natural products isolated from Aphyllophorales, many of which are known as polypores. Polypores are a large group of terrestrial fungi of the phylum Basdiomycota (basidiomycetes), and they along with certain Ascomycota are a major source of pharmacologically active substances. There are about 25 000 species of basidiomycetes, of which about 500 are members of the Aphyllophorales, a polyphyletic group that contains the polypores. Many of these fungi have circumboreal distributions in North America, Europe, and Asia and broad distributions on all inhabited continents and Africa; only a small number of the most common species with the most obvious fruiting bodies (basidiocarps) have been evaluated for biological activity. An estimated 75% of polypore fungi that have been tested show strong antimicrobial activity, and these may constitute a good source for developing new antibiotics. Numerous compounds from these fungi also display antiviral, cytotoxic, and/or antineoplastic activities. Additional important components of this vast arsenal of compounds are polysaccharides derived from the fungal cell walls. These compounds have attracted significant attention in recent years because of their immunomodulatory activities, resulting in antitumor effects. These high molecular weight compounds, often called biological response modifiers (BRM), or immunopotentiators, prevent carcinogenesis, show direct anticancer effects, and prevent tumor metastasis. Some of the protein-bound polysaccharides from polypores and other basidiomycetes have found their way to the market in Japan as anticancer drugs. Finally, numerous compounds with cardiovascular, phytotoxic, immunomodulatory, analgesic, antidiabetic, antioxidant, insecticidal, and nematocidal activities, isolated from polypores, are also presented. In fact many of the fungi mentioned in this paper have long been used in herbal medicine, including polypores such as Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi or Ling Zhi), Laetiporus sulphureus (Chicken-of-the-Woods), Trametes versicolor (Yun Zhi), Grifola umbellata (Zhu Lin), Inonotus obliquus (Chaga), and Wolfiporia cocos (Hoelen). PMID:14987072

  9. Monitoring Biological Activity at Geothermal Power Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Peter Pryfogle

    2005-09-01

    The economic impact of microbial growth in geothermal power plants has been estimated to be as high as $500,000 annually for a 100 MWe plant. Many methods are available to monitor biological activity at these facilities; however, very few plants have any on-line monitoring program in place. Metal coupon, selective culturing (MPN), total organic carbon (TOC), adenosine triphosphate (ATP), respirometry, phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA), and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) characterizations have been conducted using water samples collected from geothermal plants located in California and Utah. In addition, the on-line performance of a commercial electrochemical monitor, the BIoGEORGE?, has been evaluated during extended deployments at geothermal facilities. This report provides a review of these techniques, presents data on their application from laboratory and field studies, and discusses their value in characterizing and monitoring biological activities at geothermal power plants.

  10. Perspectives on biologically active camptothecin derivatives.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ying-Qian; Li, Wen-Qun; Morris-Natschke, Susan L; Qian, Keduo; Yang, Liu; Zhu, Gao-Xiang; Wu, Xiao-Bing; Chen, An-Liang; Zhang, Shao-Yong; Nan, Xiang; Lee, Kuo-Hsiung

    2015-07-01

    Camptothecins (CPTs) are cytotoxic natural alkaloids that specifically target DNA topoisomerase I. Research on CPTs has undergone a significant evolution from the initial discovery of CPT in the late 1960s through the study of synthetic small-molecule derivatives to investigation of macromolecular constructs and formulations. Over the past years, intensive medicinal chemistry efforts have generated numerous CPT derivatives. Three derivatives, topotecan, irinotecan, and belotecan, are currently prescribed as anticancer drugs, and several related compounds are now in clinical trials. Interest in other biological effects, besides anticancer activity, of CPTs is also growing exponentially, as indicated by the large number of publications on the subject during the last decades. Therefore, the main focus of the present review is to provide an ample but condensed overview on various biological activities of CPT derivatives, in addition to continued up-to-date coverage of anticancer effects. PMID:25808858

  11. Short-term effect of vermicompost application on biological properties of an alkaline soil with high lime content from Mediterranean region of Turkey.

    PubMed

    Uz, Ilker; Tavali, Ismail Emrah

    2014-01-01

    This study was conducted to investigate direct short-term impact of vermicompost on some soil biological properties by monitoring changes after addition of vermicompost as compared to farmyard manure in an alkaline soil with high lime content from semiarid Mediterranean region of Turkey. For this purpose, mixtures of soil and organic fertilizers in different doses were incubated under greenhouse condition. Soil samples collected in regular intervals were analyzed for biological parameters including dehydrogenase, ?-glucosidase, urease, alkaline phosphatase activities, and total number of aerobic mesophilic bacteria. Even though soil dehydrogenase activity appeared to be dose-independent based on overall evaluation, organic amendments were found to elevate dehydrogenase activity when sampling periods are evaluated individually. ?-glucosidase, urease, alkaline phosphatase activity, and aerobic mesophilic bacterial numbers in vermicompost treatments fluctuated but remained significantly above the control. A slight but statistically significant difference was detected between organic amendments in terms of urease activity. Vermicompost appeared to more significantly increase bacterial number in soil. Clearly, vermicompost has a potential to be used as an alternative to farmyard manure to improve and maintain soil biological activity in alkaline calcareous soils from the Mediterranean region of Turkey. Further studies are needed to assess its full potential for these soils. PMID:25254238

  12. Short-Term Effect of Vermicompost Application on Biological Properties of an Alkaline Soil with High Lime Content from Mediterranean Region of Turkey

    PubMed Central

    Uz, Ilker; Tavali, Ismail Emrah

    2014-01-01

    This study was conducted to investigate direct short-term impact of vermicompost on some soil biological properties by monitoring changes after addition of vermicompost as compared to farmyard manure in an alkaline soil with high lime content from semiarid Mediterranean region of Turkey. For this purpose, mixtures of soil and organic fertilizers in different doses were incubated under greenhouse condition. Soil samples collected in regular intervals were analyzed for biological parameters including dehydrogenase, β-glucosidase, urease, alkaline phosphatase activities, and total number of aerobic mesophilic bacteria. Even though soil dehydrogenase activity appeared to be dose-independent based on overall evaluation, organic amendments were found to elevate dehydrogenase activity when sampling periods are evaluated individually. β-glucosidase, urease, alkaline phosphatase activity, and aerobic mesophilic bacterial numbers in vermicompost treatments fluctuated but remained significantly above the control. A slight but statistically significant difference was detected between organic amendments in terms of urease activity. Vermicompost appeared to more significantly increase bacterial number in soil. Clearly, vermicompost has a potential to be used as an alternative to farmyard manure to improve and maintain soil biological activity in alkaline calcareous soils from the Mediterranean region of Turkey. Further studies are needed to assess its full potential for these soils. PMID:25254238

  13. Microbial and enzymatic activity of soil contaminated with azoxystrobin.

    PubMed

    Ba?maga, Ma?gorzata; Kucharski, Jan; Wyszkowska, Jadwiga

    2015-10-01

    The use of fungicides in crop protection still effectively eliminates fungal pathogens of plants. However, fungicides may dissipate to various elements of the environment and cause irreversible changes. Considering this problem, the aim of the presented study was to evaluate changes in soil biological activity in response to contamination with azoxystrobin. The study was carried out in the laboratory on samples of sandy loam with a pH of 7.0 in 1Mol KCl dm(-3). Soil samples were treated with azoxystrobin in one of four doses: 0.075 (dose recommended by the manufacturer), 2.250, 11.25 and 22.50mgkg(-1) soil DM (dry matter of soil). The control soil sample did not contain fungicide. Bacteria were identified based on 16S rRNA gene sequencing, and fungi were identified by internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region sequencing. The study revealed that increased doses of azoxystrobin inhibited the growth of organotrophic bacteria, actinomycetes and fungi. The fungicide also caused changes in microbial biodiversity. The lowest values of the colony development (CD) index were recorded for fungi and the ecophysiological (EP) index for organotrophic bacteria. Azoxystrobin had an inhibitory effect on the activity of dehydrogenases, catalase, urease, acid phosphatase and alkaline phosphatase. Dehydrogenases were found to be most resistant to the effects of the fungicide, while alkaline phosphatase in the soil recovered the balance in the shortest time. Four species of bacteria from the genus Bacillus and two species of fungi from the genus Aphanoascus were isolated from the soil contaminated with the highest dose of azoxystrobin (22.50mgkg(-1)). PMID:26343782

  14. The chemical activities of the Viking biology experiments and the arguments for the presence of superoxides, peroxides, gamma-Fe2O3 and carbon suboxide polymer in the Martian soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oyama, V. I.; Berdahl, B. J.; Woeller, F.; Lehwalt, M.

    1978-01-01

    The evolution of N2, Ar, O2, and CO2 from Martian soil as a function of humidity in the Gas Exchange Experiment are correlated with the mean level of water vapor in the Martian atmosphere. All but O2 are associated with desorption. The evolution of oxygen is consistent with the presence of alkaline earth and alkali metal superoxides; and their peroxides and the gamma-Fe2O3 in the soil can account for the generation of radioactive gas in the Labeled Release Experiment. The slower evolution of CO2 from both the Gas Exchange Experiment and the Labeled Release Experiment are associated with the direct oxidation of organics by gamma-Fe2O3. The Pyrolytic Release Experiment's second peak may be carbon suboxide as demonstrated by laboratory experiments. A necessary condition is that the polymer exists in the Martian soil. We ascribe the activity of the surface samples to the reaction of Martian particulates with an anhydrous CO2 atmosphere activated by uv and ionizing radiations. The surface particles are ultimately altered by exposure to small but significant amounts of water at the sites. From the working model, we have predicted the peculiar nature of the chemical entities and demonstrated that the model is justified by laboratory data. The final confirmation of this model will entail a return to Mars, but the nature and implications of this chemistry for the Martian surface is predicted to reveal even more about Mars with further simulations in the laboratory.

  15. Physical, chemical, and biological properties of soils in the city of Mariupol, Ukraine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shekhovtseva, O. G.; Mal'tseva, I. A.

    2015-12-01

    Physicochemical and biological properties of urbanized soils in the city of Mariupol have been considered in comparison with the background soils. The parametrical characteristics (abundance and biomass) of soil algal groups, the content of humus, the reaction of soil solution, the content of heavy metals, and the particle size distributions of soils under different anthropogenic impacts have been assessed. The physicochemical properties of soils developing under urboecosystem conditions affect the number of structure-forming species, biomass, and proportions of soil algae. According to the particle size distribution, urban soils are classified among the medium and heavy loamy soils with the predominance of the clay and coarse silt fractions. The fractions of physical clay and clay are of highest importance for the existence of algae. The accumulation of heavy metals in the surface horizons of soils can stimulate or inhibit the development of algae depending on the metal concentration.

  16. Generation and Biological Activities of Oxidized Phospholipids

    PubMed Central

    Oskolkova, Olga V.; Birukov, Konstantin G.; Levonen, Anna-Liisa; Binder, Christoph J.; Stöckl, Johannes

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Glycerophospholipids represent a common class of lipids critically important for integrity of cellular membranes. Oxidation of esterified unsaturated fatty acids dramatically changes biological activities of phospholipids. Apart from impairment of their structural function, oxidation makes oxidized phospholipids (OxPLs) markers of “modified-self” type that are recognized by soluble and cell-associated receptors of innate immunity, including scavenger receptors, natural (germ line-encoded) antibodies, and C-reactive protein, thus directing removal of senescent and apoptotic cells or oxidized lipoproteins. In addition, OxPLs acquire novel biological activities not characteristic of their unoxidized precursors, including the ability to regulate innate and adaptive immune responses. Effects of OxPLs described in vitro and in vivo suggest their potential relevance in different pathologies, including atherosclerosis, acute inflammation, lung injury, and many other conditions. This review summarizes current knowledge on the mechanisms of formation, structures, and biological activities of OxPLs. Furthermore, potential applications of OxPLs as disease biomarkers, as well as experimental therapies targeting OxPLs, are described, providing a broad overview of an emerging class of lipid mediators. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 12, 1009–1059. PMID:19686040

  17. In Search of a Better Bean: A Simple Activity to Introduce Plant Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spaccarotella, Kim; James, Roxie

    2014-01-01

    Measuring plant stem growth over time is a simple activity commonly used to introduce concepts in growth and development in plant biology (Reid & Pu, 2007). This Quick Fix updates the activity and incorporates a real-world application: students consider possible effects of soil substrate and sunlight conditions on plant growth without needing…

  18. In Search of a Better Bean: A Simple Activity to Introduce Plant Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spaccarotella, Kim; James, Roxie

    2014-01-01

    Measuring plant stem growth over time is a simple activity commonly used to introduce concepts in growth and development in plant biology (Reid & Pu, 2007). This Quick Fix updates the activity and incorporates a real-world application: students consider possible effects of soil substrate and sunlight conditions on plant growth without needing

  19. Biological soil crusts on initial soils: organic carbon dynamics and chemistry under temperate climatic conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dmig, A.; Veste, M.; Hagedorn, F.; Fischer, T.; Lange, P.; Sprte, R.; Kgel-Knabner, I.

    2013-01-01

    Numerous studies have been carried out on the community structure and diversity of biological soil crusts (BSCs) as well as their important functions on ecosystem processes. However, the amount of BSC-derived organic carbon (OC) input into soils and its chemical composition under natural conditions has rarely been investigated. In this study, different development stages of algae- and moss-dominated BSCs were investigated on a~natural (<17 yr old BSCs) and experimental sand dune (<4 yr old BSCs) in northeastern Germany. We determined the OC accumulation in BSC-layers and the BSC-derived OC input into the underlying substrates for bulk materials and fractions <63 ?m. The chemical composition of OC was characterized by applying solid-state 13C NMR spectroscopy and analysis of the carbohydrate-C signature.14C contents were used to assess the origin and dynamic of OC in BSCs and underlying substrates. Our results indicated a rapid BSC establishment and development from algae- to moss-dominated BSCs within only 4 yr under this temperate climate. The distribution of BSC types was presumably controlled by the surface stability according to the position in the slope. We found no evidence that soil properties influenced the BSC distribution on both sand dunes. 14C contents clearly indicated the existence of two OC pools in BSCs and substrates, recent BSC-derived OC and lignite-derived "old" OC (biologically refractory). The input of recent BSC-derived OC strongly decreased the mean residence time of total OC. The downward translocation of OC into the underlying substrates was only found for moss-dominated BSCs at the natural sand dune which may accelerate soil formation at these spots. BSC-derived OC mainly comprised O-alkyl C (carbohydrate-C) and to a lesser extent also alkyl C and N-alkyl C in varying compositions. Accumulation of alkyl C was only detected in BSCs at the experimental dune which may induce a~lower water solubility of BSC-derived extracellular polymeric substances when compared to BSCs at the natural sand dune indicating that hydrological effects of BSCs on soils depend on the chemical composition of the extracellular polymeric substances.

  20. Rehabilitation of European Biological Soil Crusts - The SCIN project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Laura; Zheng, Lingjuan; Maier, Stefanie; Weber, Bettina; Büdel, Burkhard

    2015-04-01

    The ''Soil Crust INternational'' (SCIN) Project aims to improve the appreciation and understanding of European Biological Soil Crusts (BSC) with the goal of developing biodiversity conservation and sustainable management strategies. Our objective is to study the uniqueness of European BSC on a local scale and investigate how these communities thrive in areas with such great macroclimatic differences. In order to cover a wide diversity of European BSC a latitudinal transect was established, extending from the Great Alvar of Öland, Sweden in the north, down to Gössenheim, Central Germany and Hochtor in the Hohe Tauern National Park, Austria, continuing to the Badlands of Tabernas, in southern Spain. The transect stretches over 20° latitude and 2,300 m in altitude and includes natural and also semi-natural sites that require maintenance, for instance, by grazing. Within the SCIN project a rehabilitation study was initiated in order to investigate the recovery potential of BSC under different environmental conditions. This entailed the construction of 10 times 1m2 plots, alongside control plots, at each of the 4 sites, where the BSC was completely removed. Over the course of 2 years (2012-2014) the plots were sampled regularly to assess recovery in the form of returning organisms (cyanobacteria, algae, lichens, bryophytes, higher plants), soil stability, chlorophyll and carbon content and nutrient composition. Cyanobacteria are considered as the pioneering functional group of BSC establishment in many regions, especially arid, and may be critical for the successful formation of any of the further BSC successional stages. Therefore, the cyanobacterial assemblages of recovering plots are being investigated to shed light on the importance of cyanobacteria in the rehabilitation of BSC and whether individual species or specific communities can be ascribed to a local or wide geographical range. It also has to be considered the proximity of recovering BSC to established crust; in our case a major contributing factor to successful recovery has to be the mature BSC surrounding the plots. Our results so far show however, that this may not be as simple as it seems due to the physical properties of the treated plot, the erosion caused by the lack of BSC may severely affect the ability of returning communities to establish themselves, and therefore the geographical and climatic aspects of the rehabilitation sites play a crucial factor in the sense of minimising erosion as much as possible. Two years is clearly not a significant amount of time in the rehabilitation of BSC, but this study throws light on the initial stages of recovery and can suggest management practices for future rehabilitation projects.

  1. Geomorphic controls on biological soil crust distribution: A conceptual model from the Mojave Desert (USA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Amanda J.; Buck, Brenda J.; Soukup, Deborah A.; Merkler, Douglas J.

    2013-08-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are bio-sedimentary features that play critical geomorphic and ecological roles in arid environments. Extensive mapping, surface characterization, GIS overlays, and statistical analyses explored relationships among BSCs, geomorphology, and soil characteristics in a portion of the Mojave Desert (USA). These results were used to develop a conceptual model that explains the spatial distribution of BSCs. In this model, geologic and geomorphic processes control the ratio of fine sand to rocks, which constrains the development of three surface cover types and biogeomorphic feedbacks across intermontane basins. (1) Cyanobacteria crusts grow where abundant fine sand and negligible rocks form saltating sand sheets. Cyanobacteria facilitate moderate sand sheet activity that reduces growth potential of mosses and lichens. (2) Extensive tall moss-lichen pinnacled crusts are favored on early to late Holocene surfaces composed of mixed rock and fine sand. Moss-lichen crusts induce a dust capture feedback mechanism that promotes further crust propagation and forms biologically-mediated vesicular (Av) horizons. The presence of thick biogenic vesicular horizons supports the interpretation that BSCs are long-lived surface features. (3) Low to moderate density moss-lichen crusts grow on early Holocene and older geomorphic surfaces that display high rock cover and negligible surficial fine sand. Desert pavement processes and abiotic vesicular horizon formation dominate these surfaces and minimize bioturbation potential. The biogeomorphic interactions that sustain these three surface cover trajectories support unique biological communities and soil conditions, thereby sustaining ecological stability. The proposed conceptual model helps predict BSC distribution within intermontane basins to identify biologically sensitive areas, set reference conditions for ecological restoration, and potentially enhance arid landscape models, as scientists address impacts of climate change and anthropogenic disturbances.

  2. Are biological effects of desert shrubs more important than physical effects on soil microorganisms?

    PubMed

    Berg, Naama; Steinberger, Yosef

    2010-01-01

    Vegetation cover plays a major role in providing organic matter and in acting as a physical barrier, with both together contributing to the formation of "fertile islands," which play an active role in prolonging biological activity in desert ecosystems. By undertaking this study, a longterm research, we designed an experiment to separate the two components-the physical and biotic parts of the perennial plants-and to identify the factor that contributes the most to the ecosystem. The study site was located in the northern Negev Desert, Israel, where 50 Hammada scoparia shrubs and 50 artificial plants were randomly marked. Soil samples were collected monthly over 3 years of research at three locations: under the canopy of H. scoparia shrubs, in the vicinity of the artificial plants, and between the shrubs (control). The contribution to microbial activity was measured by evaluation of the microbial community functions in soil. The functional aspects of the microbial community that were measured were CO2 evolution, microbial biomass, microbial functional diversity, and the physiological profile of the community. The results of this study are presented in two ways: (1) according to the three locations/treatments; and (2) according to the phenological situation of the vegetation (annual and perennial plants) in the research field: the growing phase, the drying process, and the absence of annual plants. The only parameters that were found to affect microbial activity were the contribution of the organic matter of perennial shrubs and the growth of vegetation (annual and perennial) during the growing seasons. The physical component was found to have no effect on soil microbial functional diversity, which elucidates the important contribution of the desert shrub in enhancing biological multiplicity and activity. PMID:19847475

  3. Matrigel: basement membrane matrix with biological activity.

    PubMed

    Kleinman, Hynda K; Martin, George R

    2005-10-01

    The basement membrane extracellular matrix contacts epithelial, endothelial, fat and smooth muscle cells. Because this extracellular matrix is so thin, it had been hard to study its composition, structure, and function. An extract of a tumor was found to contain all of the components present in basement and to be very biologically active. This extract, termed Matrigel, Cultrex, or EHS matrix, promotes cell differentiation, and is used to measure the invasive activity of tumor cells. In vivo, it is used for measuring angiogenic inhibitors and stimulators, to improve graft survival, repair damaged tissues, and increase tumor growth. PMID:15975825

  4. Biologic Activity of Porphyromonas endodontalis complex lipids

    PubMed Central

    Mirucki, Christopher S.; Abedi, Mehran; Jiang, Jin; Zhu, Qiang; Wang, Yu-Hsiung; Safavi, Kamran E.; Clark, Robert B.; Nichols, Frank C.

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Periapical infections secondary to pulpal necrosis are associated with bacterial contamination of the pulp. Porphyromonas endodontalis, a Gram-negative organism, is considered to be a pulpal pathogen. P. gingivalis is phylogenetically related to P. endodontalis and synthesizes several classes of novel complex lipids that possess biological activity, including the capacity to promote osteoclastogenesis and osteoclast activation. The purpose of this study was to extract and characterize constituent lipids of P. endodontalis, and evaluate their capacity to promote pro-inflammatory secretory responses in the macrophage cell line, RAW 264.7, as well as their capacity to promote osteoclastogenesis and inhibit osteoblast activity. Methods Constituent lipids of both organisms were fractionated by HPLC and were structurally characterized using electrospray-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) or ESI-MS/MS. The virulence potential of P. endodontalis lipids was then compared with known biologically active lipids isolated from P. gingivalis. Results P. endodontalis total lipids were shown to promote TNF-? secretion from RAW 264.7 cells and the serine lipid fraction appeared to account for the majority of this effect. P. endodontalis lipid preparations also increased osteoclast formation from RAW 264.7 cells but osteoblast differentiation in culture was inhibited and appeared to be dependent on TLR2 expression. Conclusions These effects underscore the importance of P. endodontalis lipids in promoting inflammatory and bone cell activation processes that could lead to periapical pathology. PMID:25146013

  5. Carbon accumulation by biological soil crusts in relation to relief and sampling depth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jetter, Stefan; Drahorad, Sylvie; Felix-Henningsen, Peter

    2010-05-01

    In arid and semiarid ecosystems the soil surface is covered by biological soil crusts (BSC). These BSC are microbial communities of cyanobacteria, lichens and mosses. Due to the photosynthetic activity of these microorganisms, BSC are main carbon contributors to arid ecosystems. The cover is related to ecosystem functions like surface stabilization, water redistribution and nutrient fixation. These functions rely on the microbial community composition of the BSC. Cyanobacteria and cyanolichens excrete exopolysaccharides, which build microaggregates with soil particles. This stabilizes and seals the soil surface. Therefore cyanobacteria and cyanolichen dominated crusts introduce runoff, which affects the distribution of carbon. The total amount of soil organic carbon was determined in relation to the relief position and BSC thickness showing a strong correlation between relief, sampling depth and carbon amounts. At the Arid Ecosystem Research Center (AERC) station of the Nizzana sand dunes (NW Negev, Israel) the dunes and the interdune corridor are covered by BSC up to 80% of the total area. The BSC are composed of a thin topcrust section and a mineral subcrust section. The overall thickness changes in relation to the relief position. Along a dune transect topcrust and subcrust samples were taken and analyzed on their C_org, C_carb, and C_total concentration. The total amount of carbon (g m^-2) was calculated from the carbon concentrations, the BSC bulk density and the sampling depth. Comparing the topcrust and subcrust values of the sampling points the topcrust sections showed 3-4 times higher concentrations of organic carbon than the subcrust sections. The light intensity decreases with soil depth, resulting in a higher biological activity and carbon fixation in the topcrust sections. The subcrust showed relative higher amounts of C_carb contributing to the soil surface stability. Depending on the relief position the total amount of accumulated carbon was 4 times higher at the interdune positions than at the top slope. The data shows a high dependence of total carbon storage by BSC on the relief position and the high importance of the separate crust sections for the accumulation of C_org and C_carb.

  6. Soil and Water Conservation Activities for Scouts.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soil Conservation Service (USDA), Washington, DC.

    The purpose of the learning activities outlined in this booklet is to help Scouts understand some conservation principles which hopefully will lead to the development of an attitude of concern for the environment and a commitment to help with the task of using and managing soil, water, and other natural resources for long range needs as well as…

  7. Soil nematode communities are ecologically more mature beneath late- than early-successional stage biological soil crusts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Darby, B.J.; Neher, D.A.; Belnap, J.

    2007-01-01

    Biological soil crusts are key mediators of carbon and nitrogen inputs for arid land soils and often represent a dominant portion of the soil surface cover in arid lands. Free-living soil nematode communities reflect their environment and have been used as biological indicators of soil condition. In this study, we test the hypothesis that nematode communities are successionally more mature beneath well-developed, late-successional stage crusts than immature, early-successional stage crusts. We identified and enumerated nematodes by genus from beneath early- and late-stage crusts from both the Colorado Plateau, Utah (cool, winter rain desert) and Chihuahuan Desert, New Mexico (hot, summer rain desert) at 0-10 and 10-30 cm depths. As hypothesized, nematode abundance, richness, diversity, and successional maturity were greater beneath well-developed crusts than immature crusts. The mechanism of this aboveground-belowground link between biological soil crusts and nematode community composition is likely the increased food, habitat, nutrient inputs, moisture retention, and/or environmental stability provided by late-successional crusts. Canonical correspondence analysis of nematode genera demonstrated that nematode community composition differed greatly between geographic locations that contrast in temperature, precipitation, and soil texture. We found unique assemblages of genera among combinations of location and crust type that reveal a gap in scientific knowledge regarding empirically derived characterization of dominant nematode genera in deserts soils and their functional role in a crust-associated food web. ?? 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Ecology and population biology of aflatoxigenic fungi in soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Soil serves as a reservoir for Aspergillus flavus and A. parasiticus, fungi that produce carcinogenic aflatoxins in agricultural commodities. Populations in soil are genetically diverse and individual genotypes show a clustered distribution pattern within fields. Surveys over large geographic region...

  9. Biological and physical influences on soil 14CO2 seasonal dynamics in a temperate hardwood forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, C. L.; McFarlane, K. J.; Risk, D.; Desai, A. R.

    2013-12-01

    While radiocarbon (14C) abundances in standing stocks of soil carbon have been used to evaluate rates of soil carbon turnover on timescales of several years to centuries, soil-respired 14CO2 measurements are an important tool for identifying more immediate responses to disturbance and climate change. Soil ?14CO2 data, however, are often temporally sparse and could be interpreted better with more context for typical seasonal ranges and trends. We report on a semi-high-frequency sampling campaign to distinguish physical and biological drivers of soil ?14CO2 at a temperate forest site in northern Wisconsin, USA. We sampled 14CO2 profiles every three weeks during snow-free months through 2012 in three intact plots and one trenched plot that excluded roots. Respired ?14CO2 declined through the summer in intact plots, shifting from an older C composition that contained more bomb 14C to a younger composition more closely resembling present 14C levels in the atmosphere. In the trenched plot, respired ?14CO2 was variable but remained comparatively higher than in intact plots, reflecting older bomb-enriched 14C sources. Although respired ?14CO2 from intact plots correlated with soil moisture, related analyses did not support a clear cause-and-effect relationship with moisture. The initial decrease in ?14CO2 from spring to midsummer could be explained by increases in 14C-deplete root respiration; however, ?14CO2 continued to decline in late summer after root activity decreased. We also investigated whether soil moisture impacted vertical partitioning of CO2 production, but found this had little effect on respired ?14CO2 because CO2 contained modern bomb C at depth, even in the trenched plot. This surprising result contrasted with decades to centuries-old pre-bomb CO2 produced in lab incubations of the same soils. Our results suggest that root-derived C and other recent C sources had dominant impacts on respired ?14CO2 in situ, even at depth. We propose that ?14CO2 may have declined through late summer in intact plots because of continued microbial turnover of root-derived C, following declines in root respiration. Our results agree with other studies showing declines in the 14C content of soil respiration over the growing season, and suggest inputs of new photosynthates through roots are an important driver.

  10. Effect of soil type and soil management on soil physical, chemical and biological properties in commercial organic olive orchards in Southern Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gomez, Jose Alfonso; Auxiliadora Soriano, Maria; Montes-Borrego, Miguel; Navas, Juan Antonio; Landa, Blanca B.

    2014-05-01

    One of the objectives of organic agriculture is to maintain and improve soil quality, while simultaneously producing an adequate yield. A key element in organic olive production is soil management, which properly implemented can optimize the use of rainfall water enhancing infiltration rates and controlling competition for soil water by weeds. There are different soil management strategies: eg. weed mowing (M), green manure with surface tillage in spring (T), or combination with animal grazing among the trees (G). That variability in soil management combined with the large variability in soil types on which organic olive trees are grown in Southern Spain, difficult the evaluation of the impact of different soil management on soil properties, and yield as well as its interpretation in terms of improvement of soil quality. This communications presents the results and analysis of soil physical, chemical and biological properties on 58 soils in Southern Spain during 2005 and 2006, and analyzed and evaluated in different studies since them. Those 58 soils were sampled in 46 certified commercial organic olive orchards with four soil types as well as 12 undisturbed areas with natural vegetation near the olive orchards. The four soil types considered were Eutric Regosol (RGeu, n= 16), Eutric Cambisol (CMeu, n=16), Calcaric Regosol (RGca, n=13 soils sampled) and Calcic Cambisol (CMcc), and the soil management systems (SMS) include were 10 light tillage (LT), 16 sheep grazing (G), 10 tillage (T), 10 mechanical mowing (M), and 12 undisturbed areas covered by natural vegetation (NV-C and NV-S). Our results indicate that soil management had a significant effect on olive yield as well as on key soil properties. Among these soil properties are physical ones, such as infiltration rate or bulk density, chemical ones, especially organic carbon concentration, and biological ones such as soil microbial respiration and bacterial community composition. Superimpose to that soil management induced variability, there was a strong interaction with soil type and climate conditions. There was also a relatively high variability within the same soil management and soil type class, indicating farm to farm variability in conditions and history of soil management. Based on this dataset two different approaches were taken to: A) evaluate the risk of soil degradation based on a limited set of soil properties, B) assess the effect of changes in SMS on soil biodiversity by using terminal restriction profiles (TRFs) derived from T-RFLP analysis of amplified 16S rDNA as. The results indicates the potential of both approaches to assess the risk of soil degradation (A) and the impact on soil biodiversity (B) upon appropriate benchmarking to characterize the interaction between soil management and soil type References Álvarez, S., Soriano, M.A., Landa, B.B., and Gómez, J.A. 2007. Soil properties in organic olive orchards compared with that in natural areas in a mountainous landscape in southern Spain. Soil Use Manage 23:404-416. Gómez, J.A., Álvarez, S., and Soriano, M.A. 2009. Development of a soil degradation assessment tool for organic olive groves in southern Spain. Catena 79:9-17. Landa, B.B., Montes-Borrego, M., Aranda, S., Soriano, M.A., Gómez, J.A., and Navas-Cortés, J.A. 2013. Soil factors involved in the diversity and structure of soil bacterial communities in commercial organic olive orchards in Southern Spain. Environmental Microbiology Reports (accepted) Soriano, M.A., Álvarez, S., Landa, B.B., and Gómez, J.A. 2013. Soil properties in organic olive orchards following different weed management in a rolling landscape of Andalusia, Spain. Renew Agr Food Syst (in press), doi:10.1017/S1742170512000361.

  11. Carbon and nitrogen fixation differ between successional stages of biological soil crusts in the Colorado Plateau and Chihuahuan Desert

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Housman, D.C.; Powers, H.H.; Collins, A.D.; Belnap, J.

    2006-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (cyanobacteria, mosses and lichens collectively) perform essential ecosystem services, including carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) fixation. Climate and land-use change are converting later successional soil crusts to early successional soil crusts with lower C and N fixation rates. To quantify the effect of such conversions on C and N dynamics in desert ecosystems we seasonally measured diurnal fixation rates in different biological soil crusts. We classified plots on the Colorado Plateau (Canyonlands) and Chihuahuan Desert (Jornada) as early (Microcoleus) or later successional (Nostoc/Scytonema or Placidium/Collema) and measured photosynthesis (Pn), nitrogenase activity (NA), and chlorophyll fluorescence (Fv/Fm) on metabolically active (moist) soil crusts. Later successional crusts typically had greater Pn, averaging 1.2-1.3-fold higher daily C fixation in Canyonlands and 2.4-2.8-fold higher in the Jornada. Later successional crusts also had greater NA, averaging 1.3-7.5-fold higher daily N fixation in Canyonlands and 1.3-25.0-fold higher in the Jornada. Mean daily Fv/Fm was also greater in later successional Canyonlands crusts during winter, and Jornada crusts during all seasons except summer. Together these findings indicate conversion of soil crusts back to early successional stages results in large reductions of C and N inputs into these ecosystems.

  12. Effects of Prochloraz fungicide on soil enzymatic activities and bacterial communities.

    PubMed

    Tejada, Manuel; Gmez, Isidoro; Garca-Martnez, Ana Mara; Osta, Paloma; Parrado, Juan

    2011-09-01

    We studied in the laboratory the effect of Prochloraz fungicide on the biological properties (soil enzymatic activities and soil bacterial communities) of a Plaggic Anthrosol. Five hundred grams of soil (<2mm) was mixed with three dosages of Prochloraz (1, 2, and 4 l ha(-1)) for 83 days. A non-Prochloraz polluted soil was used as control. Following commercial recommendations, fungicide was applied four times during the incubation experiment. For all treatments, the soil ergosterol and levels of dehydrogenase, urease, ?-glucosidase, and phosphatase activity were measured at nine different times (0, 1, 21, 22, 41, 42, 62, 63, and 83 days). The 16S rDNA-DGGE profiles in all treatments were determined at the beginning and end of the incubation period. At the end of the experiment, a significant decrease in ergosterol by 72.3%, 80.8%, and 83.1%, compared with control soil, was observed when 1, 2, and 4 l ha(-1), respectively, was added. Soil enzymatic activities increased when the Prochloraz applied to the soil increased, possibly because the fungicide is used by bacterial communities as a source of energy and nutrients. The 16S rDNA-DGGE profiles indicated that the fungicide did not negatively affect soil bacterial biodiversity. These results suggested that the fungicide Prochloraz has a very interesting agronomic effect, possibly due to the negative effect on soil fungal population stimulating the growth of soil bacterial activity. PMID:21596437

  13. Impact of different tillage treatments on soil respiration and microbial activity for different agricultural used soils in Austria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klik, Andreas; Scholl, Gerlinde; Baatar, Undrakh-Od

    2015-04-01

    Soils can act as a net sink for sequestering carbon and thus attenuating the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide if appropriate soil and crop management is applied. Adapted soil management strategies like less intensive or even no tillage treatments may result in slower mineralization of soil organic carbon and enhanced carbon sequestration. In order to assess the impact of different soil tillage systems on carbon dioxide emissions due to soil respiration and on soil biological activity parameters, a field study of three years duration (2007-2010)has been performed at different sites in Austria. Following tillage treatments were compared: 1) conventional tillage (CT) with plough with and without cover crop during winter period, 2) reduced tillage (RT) with cultivator with cover crop, and 3) no-till (NT) with cover crop. Each treatment was replicated three times. At two sites with similar climatic conditions but different soil textures soil CO2 efflux was measured during the growing seasons in intervals of one to two weeks using a portable soil respiration system consisting of a soil respiration chamber attached to an infrared gas analyzer. Additionally, concurrent soil temperature and soil water contents of the top layer (0-5 cm)were measured. For these and additional three other sites with different soil and climatic conditions soil samples were taken to assess the impact of tillage treatment on soil biological activity parameters. In spring, summer and autumn samples were taken from each plot at the soil depth of 0-10, 10-20, and 20-30 cm to analyze soil microbial respiration (MR), substrate induced respiration (SIR), beta-glucasidase activity (GLU) and dehydrogenase (BHY). Samples were sieved (2 mm) and stored at 4 C in a refrigerator. Analyses of were performed within one month after sampling. The measurements show a high spatial variability of soil respiration data even within one plot. Nevertheless, the level of soil carbon dioxide efflux was similar for CT and RT, but usually higher than for NT. Minimum values occurred under cold and dry, maximum values under hot and moist conditions. Focusing on the soil texture, higher fluxes were observed for sandy silt thank for loamy clay. During the investigated growing seasons carbon releases from the sandy silt ranged between 7.0 and 11.1, 6.6 and 10.4, and 5.4 and 8.4 t CO2-C.ha-1 for CT, RT and NT, respectively. Corresponding values for the loamy clay ranged from 2.8-7.0, 3.4-7.4, and 4.7-6.6 t CO2-C.ha-1 for CT, RT and NT, respectively. Microbial activity at 0-10 cm depth differed significantly between the five investigated sites. SIR and DHY showed significantly higher values in spring and summer, respectively, than in other seasons. The impact of tillage is demonstrated by significantly higher values of all investigated biological activity parameters for RT and NT.

  14. Development, calibration, and performance of a novel biocrust wetness probe (BWP) measuring the water content of biological soil crusts and surface soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, Bettina; Berkemeier, Thomas; Ruckteschler, Nina; Caesar, Jennifer; Ritter, Holger; Heintz, Henno; Brass, Henning

    2015-04-01

    The surface layer of soils as transition zone between pedosphere and atmosphere plays a crucial role in exchange processes of nutrients, atmospheric gases and water. In arid and semiarid regions, this uppermost soil layer is commonly colonized by biological soil crusts (biocrusts), which cover about 46 million km2 worldwide being highly relevant in the global terrestrial carbon and nitrogen cycles. Their water status is of major concern, as activity of these poikilohydric organisms is directly controlled by their water content. On-site analyses of both bare and crusted soils thus are urgently needed to correctly model exchange processes of water, nutrients and trace gases at the soil surface. In this study we present the biocrust wetness probe (BWP), which is the first low-cost sensor to reliably measure the water content within biocrusts or the uppermost 5 mm of the substrate. Using a weak alternating current, the electrical conductivity is assessed and an automatic calibration routine allows calculating the water content and precipitation equivalent of the surface layer over time. During one year of continuous field measurements, 60 BWPs were installed in different types of biocrusts and bare soil to measure at 5-minute intervals in the Succulent Karroo, South Africa. All sensors worked reliably and responded immediately and individually upon precipitation events. Upon completion of field measurements, soil and biocrust samples were collected from all measurement spots to compile calibration curves in the lab. In most soil and biocrust samples the water content rose linearly with increasing electrical conductivity values and only for few samples an exponential relationship was observed. Measurements revealed characteristic differences in biocrust and soil wetness patterns, which affect both the water regime and physiological processes in desert regions. Thus BWPs turned out to be well suited sensors for spatio-temporal monitoring of soil water content, allowing for modeling of soil water fluxes, nutrient allocation and growth.

  15. Smectite clays in Mars soil - Evidence for their presence and role in Viking biology experimental results

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banin, A.; Rishpon, J.

    1979-01-01

    Evidence for the presence of smectite clays in Martian soils is reviewed and results of experiments with certain active clays simulating the Viking biology experiments are reported. Analyses of Martian soil composition by means of X-ray fluorescence spectrometry and dust storm spectroscopy and Martian geological history strongly suggest the presence of a mixture of weathered ferro-silicate minerals, mainly nontronite and montmorillonite, accompanied by soluble sulphate salts, as major constituents. Samples of montmorillonite and nontronite incubated with (C-14)-formate or the radioactive nutrient medium solution used in the Viking Labeled Release experiment, were found to produce patterns of release of radioactive gas very similar to those observed in the Viking experiments, indicating the iron-catalyzed decomposition of formate as the reaction responsible for the Viking results. The experimental results of Hubbard (1979) simulating the results of the Viking Pyrolytic Release experiment using iron montmorillonites are pointed out, and it is concluded that many of the results of the Viking biology experiments can be explained in terms of the surface activity of smectite clays in catalysis and adsorption.

  16. Biological Activities of Polyphenols from Grapes

    PubMed Central

    Xia, En-Qin; Deng, Gui-Fang; Guo, Ya-Jun; Li, Hua-Bin

    2010-01-01

    The dietary consumption of grape and its products is associated with a lower incidence of degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancers. Most recent interest has focused on the bioactive phenolic compounds in grape. Anthocyanins, flavanols, flavonols and resveratrol are the most important grape polyphenols because they possess many biological activities, such as antioxidant, cardioprotective, anticancer, anti-inflammation, antiaging and antimicrobial properties. This review summarizes current knowledge on the bioactivities of grape phenolics. The extraction, isolation and identification methods of polyphenols from grape as well as their bioavailability and potential toxicity also are included. PMID:20386657

  17. Biological activities of polyphenols from grapes.

    PubMed

    Xia, En-Qin; Deng, Gui-Fang; Guo, Ya-Jun; Li, Hua-Bin

    2010-01-01

    The dietary consumption of grape and its products is associated with a lower incidence of degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancers. Most recent interest has focused on the bioactive phenolic compounds in grape. Anthocyanins, flavanols, flavonols and resveratrol are the most important grape polyphenols because they possess many biological activities, such as antioxidant, cardioprotective, anticancer, anti-inflammation, antiaging and antimicrobial properties. This review summarizes current knowledge on the bioactivities of grape phenolics. The extraction, isolation and identification methods of polyphenols from grape as well as their bioavailability and potential toxicity also are included. PMID:20386657

  18. Reconstructing Causal Biological Networks through Active Learning.

    PubMed

    Cho, Hyunghoon; Berger, Bonnie; Peng, Jian

    2016-01-01

    Reverse-engineering of biological networks is a central problem in systems biology. The use of intervention data, such as gene knockouts or knockdowns, is typically used for teasing apart causal relationships among genes. Under time or resource constraints, one needs to carefully choose which intervention experiments to carry out. Previous approaches for selecting most informative interventions have largely been focused on discrete Bayesian networks. However, continuous Bayesian networks are of great practical interest, especially in the study of complex biological systems and their quantitative properties. In this work, we present an efficient, information-theoretic active learning algorithm for Gaussian Bayesian networks (GBNs), which serve as important models for gene regulatory networks. In addition to providing linear-algebraic insights unique to GBNs, leading to significant runtime improvements, we demonstrate the effectiveness of our method on data simulated with GBNs and the DREAM4 network inference challenge data sets. Our method generally leads to faster recovery of underlying network structure and faster convergence to final distribution of confidence scores over candidate graph structures using the full data, in comparison to random selection of intervention experiments. PMID:26930205

  19. Reconstructing Causal Biological Networks through Active Learning

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Hyunghoon; Berger, Bonnie; Peng, Jian

    2016-01-01

    Reverse-engineering of biological networks is a central problem in systems biology. The use of intervention data, such as gene knockouts or knockdowns, is typically used for teasing apart causal relationships among genes. Under time or resource constraints, one needs to carefully choose which intervention experiments to carry out. Previous approaches for selecting most informative interventions have largely been focused on discrete Bayesian networks. However, continuous Bayesian networks are of great practical interest, especially in the study of complex biological systems and their quantitative properties. In this work, we present an efficient, information-theoretic active learning algorithm for Gaussian Bayesian networks (GBNs), which serve as important models for gene regulatory networks. In addition to providing linear-algebraic insights unique to GBNs, leading to significant runtime improvements, we demonstrate the effectiveness of our method on data simulated with GBNs and the DREAM4 network inference challenge data sets. Our method generally leads to faster recovery of underlying network structure and faster convergence to final distribution of confidence scores over candidate graph structures using the full data, in comparison to random selection of intervention experiments. PMID:26930205

  20. Vulnerability of desert biological soil crusts to wind erosion: The influences of crust development, soil texture, and disturbance

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.; Gillette, Dale A.

    1998-01-01

    Biological soil crusts, consisting of cyanobacteria, green algae, lichens, and mosses, are important in stabilizing soils in semi-arid and arid lands. Integrity of these crusts is compromised by compressional disturbances such as foot, vehicle, or livestock traffic. Using a portable wind tunnel, we found threshold friction velocities (TFVs) of undisturbed crusts well above wind forces experienced at these sites; consequently, these soils are not vulnerable to wind erosion. However, recently disturbed soils or soils with less well-developed crusts frequently experience wind speeds that exceed the stability thresholds of the crusts. Crustal biomass is concentrated in the top 3 mm of soils. Sandblasting by wind can quickly remove this material, thereby reducing N and C inputs from these organisms. This loss can result in reduced site productivity, as well as exposure of unprotected subsurface sediments to wind and water erosion. Actions to reduce impacts to these crusts can include adjustments in type, intensity, and timing of use.

  1. The influence of biological soil crusts on mineral uptake by associated vascular plants

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Harper, K.T.; Belnap, Jayne

    2001-01-01

    Soil surfaces dominated by cyanobacteria and cyanolichens (such as Collema sp.) are widespread in deserts of the world. The influence of these biological soil crusts on the uptake of bioessential elements is reported for the first time for six seed plants of the deserts of Utah. This sample almost doubles the number of species for which the influence of biological soil crusts on mineral uptake of associated vascular plants is known. These new case studies, and others previously published, demonstrate that cyanobacterial or cyanobacteria- Collema crusts significantly alter uptake by plants of many bioessential elements. In studies now available, these crusts always increase the N content of associated seed plants. Uptake of Cu, K, Mg, and Zn is usually (>70% of reported cases) increased in the presence of the biological soil crusts. Soil crusts are generally negatively associated with Fe and P levels in associated seed plant tissue, while plant tissue levels of Ca, Mn, and Na are positively as often as negatively associated with the presence of soil crusts. Increases in bioessential elements in vascular plant tissue from biologically-crusted areas are greatest for short-lived herbs that are rooted primarily within the surface soil, the horizon most influenced by crustal organisms. The mineral content of a deeply rooted shrub (Coleogyne ramosissima) was less influenced by co-occurrence of biological soil crusts.

  2. Biological soil crusts accelerate the nitrogen cycle through large NO and HONO emissions in drylands

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Dianming; Tamm, Alexandra; Ruckteschler, Nina; Rodríguez-Caballero, Emilio; Meusel, Hannah; Elbert, Wolfgang; Behrendt, Thomas; Sörgel, Matthias; Cheng, Yafang; Crutzen, Paul J.; Su, Hang; Pöschl, Ulrich

    2015-01-01

    Reactive nitrogen species have a strong influence on atmospheric chemistry and climate, tightly coupling the Earth’s nitrogen cycle with microbial activity in the biosphere. Their sources, however, are not well constrained, especially in dryland regions accounting for a major fraction of the global land surface. Here, we show that biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are emitters of nitric oxide (NO) and nitrous acid (HONO). Largest fluxes are obtained by dark cyanobacteria-dominated biocrusts, being ∼20 times higher than those of neighboring uncrusted soils. Based on laboratory, field, and satellite measurement data, we obtain a best estimate of ∼1.7 Tg per year for the global emission of reactive nitrogen from biocrusts (1.1 Tg a−1 of NO-N and 0.6 Tg a−1 of HONO-N), corresponding to ∼20% of global nitrogen oxide emissions from soils under natural vegetation. On continental scales, emissions are highest in Africa and South America and lowest in Europe. Our results suggest that dryland emissions of reactive nitrogen are largely driven by biocrusts rather than the underlying soil. They help to explain enigmatic discrepancies between measurement and modeling approaches of global reactive nitrogen emissions. As the emissions of biocrusts strongly depend on precipitation events, climate change affecting the distribution and frequency of precipitation may have a strong impact on terrestrial emissions of reactive nitrogen and related climate feedback effects. Because biocrusts also account for a large fraction of global terrestrial biological nitrogen fixation, their impacts should be further quantified and included in regional and global models of air chemistry, biogeochemistry, and climate. PMID:26621714

  3. Biological soil crusts accelerate the nitrogen cycle through large NO and HONO emissions in drylands.

    PubMed

    Weber, Bettina; Wu, Dianming; Tamm, Alexandra; Ruckteschler, Nina; Rodríguez-Caballero, Emilio; Steinkamp, Jörg; Meusel, Hannah; Elbert, Wolfgang; Behrendt, Thomas; Sörgel, Matthias; Cheng, Yafang; Crutzen, Paul J; Su, Hang; Pöschl, Ulrich

    2015-12-15

    Reactive nitrogen species have a strong influence on atmospheric chemistry and climate, tightly coupling the Earth's nitrogen cycle with microbial activity in the biosphere. Their sources, however, are not well constrained, especially in dryland regions accounting for a major fraction of the global land surface. Here, we show that biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are emitters of nitric oxide (NO) and nitrous acid (HONO). Largest fluxes are obtained by dark cyanobacteria-dominated biocrusts, being ∼20 times higher than those of neighboring uncrusted soils. Based on laboratory, field, and satellite measurement data, we obtain a best estimate of ∼1.7 Tg per year for the global emission of reactive nitrogen from biocrusts (1.1 Tg a(-1) of NO-N and 0.6 Tg a(-1) of HONO-N), corresponding to ∼20% of global nitrogen oxide emissions from soils under natural vegetation. On continental scales, emissions are highest in Africa and South America and lowest in Europe. Our results suggest that dryland emissions of reactive nitrogen are largely driven by biocrusts rather than the underlying soil. They help to explain enigmatic discrepancies between measurement and modeling approaches of global reactive nitrogen emissions. As the emissions of biocrusts strongly depend on precipitation events, climate change affecting the distribution and frequency of precipitation may have a strong impact on terrestrial emissions of reactive nitrogen and related climate feedback effects. Because biocrusts also account for a large fraction of global terrestrial biological nitrogen fixation, their impacts should be further quantified and included in regional and global models of air chemistry, biogeochemistry, and climate. PMID:26621714

  4. Stabilization of Desert Surfaces and Accumulation of Dust Under Biological Soil Crusts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finstad, K. M.; Mcnicol, G.; Pfeiffer, M.; Amundson, R.

    2014-12-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSC) are known to play a critical role in the stabilization of desert surfaces by helping to protect sediment from wind and water erosion and aiding in the trapping of airborne particles. The crusts are often composed of cyanobacteria, algae, and fungi, and occupy the upper few cm of a soil. Due to their high tolerance of desiccation and ability to utilize fog and dew sources, BSC are able to exist in environments that may otherwise be too dry for vascular plants. In the hyperarid Atacama Desert, decades or more between measurable precipitation events has created a landscape devoid of macroscopic life. While precipitation is rare, coastal fog occurs regularly and microbial communities capable of utilizing fog and dew water are able to persist. Here we found cyanobacteria and lichen living in association with a thin sulfate and dust crust (~2 cm) covering the surface of 'dust plateaus'. Topographically the region is highly irregular and part of a largely erosional landscape. We hypothesized that these flat-topped plateaus are accretionary features that have been able to maintain dust accumulation for thousands of years as a result of the surface crusts. To test this hypothesis we conducted radiocarbon analysis of crusts and soil profiles at two sites approximately 30 km apart, one in a high fog zone and another in lower fog frequency zone. The radiocarbon analysis shows that sediment has been accumulating in the 'plateaus' for the past 15,000 years and that biological activity and rates of C cycling in the crust increase with increasing fog frequency and intensity. The ages of organic material in the dust decrease monotonically with decreasing soil thickness, suggestive of progressive upward growth by dust accumulation. Our data indicate that the BSC are capable of surviving in hyperarid the Atacama Desert, a Mars analogue, through the utilization of fog water, and that their presence can leave a visible geomorphic imprint on the landscape.

  5. Rapid Recovery of Cyanobacterial Pigments in Desiccated Biological Soil Crusts following Addition of Water

    PubMed Central

    Abed, Raeid M. M.; Polerecky, Lubos; Al-Habsi, Amal; Oetjen, Janina; Strous, Marc; de Beer, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    We examined soil surface colour change to green and hydrotaxis following addition of water to biological soil crusts using pigment extraction, hyperspectral imaging, microsensors and 13C labeling experiments coupled to matrix-assisted laser desorption and ionization time of flight-mass spectrometry (MALD-TOF MS). The topsoil colour turned green in less than 5 minutes following water addition. The concentrations of chlorophyll a (Chl a), scytonemin and echinenon rapidly increased in the top <1 mm layer while in the deeper layer, their concentrations remained low. Hyperspectral imaging showed that, in both wet and dehydrated crusts, cyanobacteria formed a layer at a depth of 0.2–0.4 mm and this layer did not move upward after wetting. 13C labeling experiments and MALDI TOF analysis showed that Chl a was already present in the desiccated crusts and de novo synthesis of this molecule started only after 2 days of wetting due to growth of cyanobacteria. Microsensor measurements showed that photosynthetic activity increased concomitantly with the increase of Chl a, and reached a maximum net rate of 92 µmol m−2 h−1 approximately 2 hours after wetting. We conclude that the colour change of soil crusts to green upon water addition was not due to hydrotaxis but rather to the quick recovery and reassembly of pigments. Cyanobacteria in crusts can maintain their photosynthetic apparatus intact even under prolonged periods of desiccation with the ability to resume their photosynthetic activities within minutes after wetting. PMID:25375172

  6. Milk inhibits the biological activity of ricin.

    PubMed

    Rasooly, Reuven; He, Xiaohua; Friedman, Mendel

    2012-08-10

    Ricin is a highly toxic protein produced by the castor plant Ricinus communis. The toxin is relatively easy to isolate and can be used as a biological weapon. There is great interest in identifying effective inhibitors for ricin. In this study, we demonstrated by three independent assays that a component of reconstituted powdered milk has a high binding affinity to ricin. We discovered that milk can competitively bind to and reduce the amount of toxin available to asialofetuin type II, which is used as a model to study the binding of ricin to galactose cell-surface receptors. Milk also removes ricin bound to the microtiter plate. In parallel experiments, we demonstrated by activity assay and by immuno-PCR that milk can bind competitively to 1 ng/ml ricin, reducing the amount of toxin uptake by the cells, and thus inhibit the biological activity of ricin. The inhibitory effect of milk on ricin activity in Vero cells was at the same level as by anti-ricin antibodies. We also found that (a) milk did not inhibit ricin at concentrations of 10 or 100 ng/ml; (b) autoclaving 10 and 100 ng/ml ricin in DMEM at 121 °C for 30 min completely abolished activity; and (c) milk did not affect the activity of another ribosome inactivating protein, Shiga toxin type 2 (Stx2), produced by pathogenic Escherichia coli O157:H7. Unlike ricin, which is internalized into the cells via a galactose-binding site, Stx2 is internalized through the cell surface receptor glycolipid globotriasylceramides Gb3 and Gb4. These observations suggest that ricin toxicity may possibly be reduced at room temperature by a widely consumed natural liquid food. PMID:22733821

  7. Milk Inhibits the Biological Activity of Ricin

    PubMed Central

    Rasooly, Reuven; He, Xiaohua; Friedman, Mendel

    2012-01-01

    Ricin is a highly toxic protein produced by the castor plant Ricinus communis. The toxin is relatively easy to isolate and can be used as a biological weapon. There is great interest in identifying effective inhibitors for ricin. In this study, we demonstrated by three independent assays that a component of reconstituted powdered milk has a high binding affinity to ricin. We discovered that milk can competitively bind to and reduce the amount of toxin available to asialofetuin type II, which is used as a model to study the binding of ricin to galactose cell-surface receptors. Milk also removes ricin bound to the microtiter plate. In parallel experiments, we demonstrated by activity assay and by immuno-PCR that milk can bind competitively to 1 ng/ml ricin, reducing the amount of toxin uptake by the cells, and thus inhibit the biological activity of ricin. The inhibitory effect of milk on ricin activity in Vero cells was at the same level as by anti-ricin antibodies. We also found that (a) milk did not inhibit ricin at concentrations of 10 or 100 ng/ml; (b) autoclaving 10 and 100 ng/ml ricin in DMEM at 121 °C for 30 min completely abolished activity; and (c) milk did not affect the activity of another ribosome inactivating protein, Shiga toxin type 2 (Stx2), produced by pathogenic Escherichia coli O157:H7. Unlike ricin, which is internalized into the cells via a galactose-binding site, Stx2 is internalized through the cell surface receptor glycolipid globotriasylceramides Gb3 and Gb4. These observations suggest that ricin toxicity may possibly be reduced at room temperature by a widely consumed natural liquid food. PMID:22733821

  8. SORPTION ON WASTEWATER SOLIDS: ELIMINATION OF BIOLOGICAL ACTIVITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Sorption was found to be greatly affected by the biological activity in wastewater solids. wo experimental techniques, cyanide treatment and pasteurization, were developed for eliminating the biological activity during isotherm measurements. oth methods are effective; however, pa...

  9. Biological activities of Morus celtidifolia leaf extracts.

    PubMed

    Viveros-Valdez, Ezequiel; Oranday-Crdenas, Azucena; Rivas-Morales, Catalina; Verde-Star, Mara Julia; Carranza-Rosales, Pilar

    2015-07-01

    The aims of this research were to examine the antibacterial, cytotoxic and antiradical/antioxidant activities of the organic extracts obtained from the leaves of the medicinal plant Morus celtidifolia (Family: Moraceae). To evaluate its antimicrobial properties, M. celtidifolia was tested against the bacteria of medical importance: Bacillus subtilis, Staphyloccocus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Enterobacter cloacae and Enterobacter aerogenes. Cytotoxic activity was assessed by using the brine shrimp (Artemia salina) lethality assay and also by toxicity screening against human cancer cell lines: MCF-7 (human breast adenocarcinoma) and HeLa (cervix adenocarcinoma). The free radical-scavenging activity was determined by the 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl radical (DPPH) assay. Results revealed that the hexanic extract has antibacterial activity only against Gram positive strains, while the methanolic extract showed better cytotoxic and antioxidant activities than the non- polar extract with a median lethal dose (LD??) of 125?g/ml, 90?g/ml and 75?g/ml against A. salina, MCF-7 and HeLa cells respectively, and median effective concentration (EC??) of 152?g/ml on radical scavenging assay. This is the first study reporting the biological activities of leaves of Morus celtidifolia. PMID:26142508

  10. Hymenobacter terrenus sp. nov., isolated from biological soil crusts.

    PubMed

    Tang, Kai; Yuan, Bo; Lai, Qiliang; Wang, Ruigang; Bao, Haizhu; Feng, Fu Ying

    2015-12-01

    A Gram-stain-negative, non-spore-forming, short rod-shaped, non-motile, light-pink bacterial strain, MIMtkLc17T, was isolated from biological soil crusts collected in Liangcheng, Inner Mongolia. Growth of strain MIMtkLc17T was observed at 2-35 °C and in the presence of 1% (w/v) NaCl. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences showed that sequence similarities between strain MIMtkLc17T and the type strains of species of the genus Hymenobacter ranged from 89.93% to 96.49%. Strain MIMtkLc17T can secrete mass polysaccharide. The major fatty acids of strain MIMtkLc17T were iso-C15 : 0, summed feature 3 (C16 : 1ω7c/C16 : 1ω6c), C16 : 1ω5c and summed feature 4 (iso-C17 : 1 I/anteiso-C17 : 1 B). The sole respiratory quinone was menaquinone MK-7. The G+C content of the chromosomal DNA was 57.8 mol%. The results of phylogenetic, chemotaxonomic and phenotypic characterization indicated that strain MIMtkLc17T can be distinguished from all known species of the genus Hymenobacter and represents a novel species of this genus, for which the name Hymenobacter terrenus sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is MIMtkLc17T ( = MCCC 1K00507T = KCTC 42636T). PMID:26373667

  11. Microbial activity and soil organic matter decay in roadside soils polluted with petroleum hydrocarbons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mykhailova, Larysa; Fischer, Thomas; Iurchenko, Valentina

    2015-04-01

    It has been demonstrated previously that hydrocarbon addition to soil provokes soil organic matter priming (Zyakun et al., 2011). It has further been shown that petroleum hydrocarbons deposit to roadside soils bound to fine mineral particles and together with vehicle spray (Mykhailova et al., 2014), and that hydrocarbon concentrations decrease to safe levels within the first 15 m from the road, reaching background concentrations at 60-100 m distance (Mykhailova et al., 2013). It was the aim of this study to (I) identify the bioavailability of different petroleum hydrocarbon fractions to degradation and to (II) identify the native (i.e. pedogenic) C fraction affected by hydrocarbon-mediated soil organic matter priming during decay. To address this aim, we collected soil samples at distances from 1 to 100 m (sampling depth 15 cm) near the Traktorostroiteley avenue and the Pushkinskaya street in Kharkov, as well as near the country road M18 near Kharkov, Ukraine. The roads have been under exploitation for several decades, so microbial adaptation to enhanced hydrocarbon levels and full expression of effects could be assumed. The following C fractions were quantified using 13C-CP/MAS-NMR: Carbohydrates, Proteins, Lignin, Aliphates, Carbonyl/Carboxyl as well as black carbon according to Nelson and Baldock (2005). Petroleum hydrocarbons were determind after hexane extraction using GC-MS and divided into a light fraction (chain-length C27, Mykhailova et al., 2013). Potential soil respiration was determined every 48 h by trapping of CO2 evolving from 20 g soil in NaOH at 20 ° C and at 60% of the maximum water holding capacity and titration after a total incubation period of 4 weeks in the lab. It was found that soil respiration positively correlated with the ratio of the light fraction to the sum of medium and heavy fractions of petroleum hydrocarbons, which indicates higher biodegradation primarily of the light petroleum hydrocarbon fraction. Further, soil respiration was positively correlated with the carbohydrate fraction and negatively correlated with the aliphatic fraction of the soil C, while carbohydrate-C and alkyl-C increased and decreased with distance from the road, respectively. It is proposed that petroleum hydrocarbons supress soil biological activity at concentrations above 1500 mg kg-1, and that soil organic matter priming primarily affects the carbohydrate fraction of soil organic matter. It can be concluded that the abundance of solid carbohydrates (O-alkyl C) is of paramount importance for the hydrocarbon mineralization under natural conditions, compared to more recalcitrant SOM fractions (mainly aromatic and alkyl C). References Mykhailova, L., Fischer, T., Iurchenko, V. (2013) Distribution and fractional composition of petroleum hydrocarbons in roadside soils. Applied and Environmental Soil Science, vol. 2013, Article ID 938703, 6 pages, DOI 10.1155/2013/938703 Mykhailova, L., Fischer, T., Iurchenko, V. (2014) Deposition of petroleum hydrocarbons with sediment trapped in snow in roadside areas. Journal of Environmental Engineering and Landscape Management 22(3):237-244, DOI 10.3846/16486897.2014.889698 Nelson P.N. and Baldock J.A. (2005) Estimating the molecular composition of a diverse range of natural organic materials from solid-state 13C NMR and elemental analyses, 2005, Biogeochemistry (2005) 72: 1-34, DOI 10.1007/s10533-004-0076-3 Zyakun, A., Nii-Annang, S., Franke, G., Fischer, T., Buegger, F., Dilly, O. (2011) Microbial Actvity and 13C/12C Ratio as Evidence of N-Hexadecane and N-Hexadecanoic Acid Biodegradation in Agricultural and Forest Soils. Geomicrobiology Journal 28:632-647, DOI 10.1080/01490451.2010.489922

  12. Increased temperature and altered summer precipitation have differential effects on biological soil crusts in a dryland ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, Shannon L.; Kuske, Cheryl R.; Carney, Travis D.; Housman, David C.; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Belnap, Jayne

    2012-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are common and ecologically important members of dryland ecosystems worldwide, where they stabilize soil surfaces and contribute newly fixed C and N to soils. To test the impacts of predicted climate change scenarios on biocrusts in a dryland ecosystem, the effects of a 23 C increase in soil temperature and an increased frequency of smaller summer precipitation events were examined in a large, replicated field study conducted in the cold desert of the Colorado Plateau, USA. Surface soil biomass (DNA concentration), photosynthetically active cyanobacterial biomass (chlorophyll a concentration), cyanobacterial abundance (quantitative PCR assay), and bacterial community composition (16S rRNA gene sequencing) were monitored seasonally over 2 years. Soil microbial biomass and bacterial community composition were highly stratified between the 02 cm depth biocrusts and 510 cm depth soil beneath the biocrusts. The increase in temperature did not have a detectable effect on any of the measured parameters over 2 years. However, after the second summer of altered summer precipitation pattern, significant declines occurred in the surface soil biomass (avg. DNA concentration declined 38%), photosynthetic cyanobacterial biomass (avg. chlorophyll a concentration declined 78%), cyanobacterial abundance (avg. gene copies g?1 soil declined 95%), and proportion of Cyanobacteria in the biocrust bacterial community (avg. representation in sequence libraries declined 85%). Biocrusts are important contributors to soil stability, soil C and N stores, and plant performance, and the loss or reduction of biocrusts under an altered precipitation pattern associated with climate change could contribute significantly to lower soil fertility and increased erosion and dust production in dryland ecosystems at a regional scale.

  13. Biologically Active Metabolites Synthesized by Microalgae

    PubMed Central

    de Morais, Michele Greque; Vaz, Bruna da Silva; de Morais, Etiele Greque; Costa, Jorge Alberto Vieira

    2015-01-01

    Microalgae are microorganisms that have different morphological, physiological, and genetic traits that confer the ability to produce different biologically active metabolites. Microalgal biotechnology has become a subject of study for various fields, due to the varied bioproducts that can be obtained from these microorganisms. When microalgal cultivation processes are better understood, microalgae can become an environmentally friendly and economically viable source of compounds of interest, because production can be optimized in a controlled culture. The bioactive compounds derived from microalgae have anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant activities, among others. Furthermore, these microorganisms have the ability to promote health and reduce the risk of the development of degenerative diseases. In this context, the aim of this review is to discuss bioactive metabolites produced by microalgae for possible applications in the life sciences. PMID:26339647

  14. Milk biologically active components as nutraceuticals: review.

    PubMed

    Sverin, Sindayikengera; Wenshui, Xia

    2005-01-01

    Milk contains components that provide critical nutritive elements, immunological protection, and biologically active substances to both neonates and adults. Milk proteins are currently the main source of a range of biologically active peptides. Concentrates of these peptides are potential health-enhancing nutraceuticals for food and pharmaceutical applications. Several bioactive peptides may be used as nutraceuticals, for example, in the treatment of diarrhea, hypertension, thrombosis, dental diseases, as well as mineral malabsorption, and immunodeficiency. Minor whey proteins, such as lactoferrin, lactoperoxidase, lysozyme, and immunoglobulins, are considered antimicrobial proteins. Milk also contains some natural bioactive substances. These include oligosaccharides, fucosylated oligosaccharides, hormones, growth factors, mucin, gangliosides, and endogenous peptides, which are present in milk at secretion. Most of the claimed physiological properties of milk bioactive components have been carried out in vitro or in animal model systems, and these hypothesized properties remain to be proven in humans. Whether these milk bioactive components will replace drugs entirely in the immediate future is still unclear, but the increasing appreciation of "drug foods" or nutraceuticals plays a complementary rather than a substitutional role to the synthetic pharmacological drugs. PMID:16371332

  15. Spectroscopic study of biologically active glasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szumera, M.; Wacławska, I.; Mozgawa, W.; Sitarz, M.

    2005-06-01

    It is known that the chemical activity phenomenon is characteristic for some inorganic glasses and they are able to participate in biological processes of living organisms (plants, animals and human bodies). An example here is the selective removal of silicate-phosphate glass components under the influence of biological solutions, which has been applied in designing glasses acting as ecological fertilizers of controlled release rate of the nutrients for plants. The structure of model silicate-phosphate glasses containing the different amounts of the glass network formers, i.e. Ca 2+ and Mg 2+, as a binding components were studied. These elements besides other are indispensable of the normal growth of plants. In order to establish the function and position occupied by the particular components in the glass structure, the glasses were examined by FTIR spectroscopy (with spectra decomposition) and XRD methods. It has been found that the increasing amount of MgO in the structure of silicate-phosphate glasses causes the formation of domains the structure of which changes systematically from a structure of the cristobalite type to a structure corresponding to forsterite type. Whilst the increasing content of CaO in the structure of silicate-phosphate glasses causes the formation of domains the structure of which changes from a structure typical for cristobalite through one similar to the structure of calcium orthophosphate, to a structure corresponding to calcium silicates. The changing character of domains structure is the reason of different chemical activity of glasses.

  16. Physicochemical and biological quality of soil in hexavalent chromium-contaminated soils as affected by chemical and microbial remediation.

    PubMed

    Liao, Yingping; Min, Xiaobo; Yang, Zhihui; Chai, Liyuan; Zhang, Shujuan; Wang, Yangyang

    2014-01-01

    Chemical and microbial methods are the main remediation technologies for chromium-contaminated soil. These technologies have progressed rapidly in recent years; however, there is still a lack of methods for evaluating the chemical and biological quality of soil after different remediation technologies have been applied. In this paper, microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria and chemical remediation with ferrous sulphate were used for the remediation of soils contaminated with Cr(VI) at two levels (80 and 1,276mgkg(-1)) through a column leaching experiment. After microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria, the average concentration of water-soluble Cr(VI) in the soils was reduced to less than 5.0mgkg(-1). Soil quality was evaluated based on 11 soil properties and the fuzzy comprehensive assessment method, including fuzzy mathematics and correlative analysis. The chemical fertility quality index was improved by one grade using microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria, and the biological fertility quality index increased by at least a factor of 6. Chemical remediation with ferrous sulphate, however, resulted in lower levels of available phosphorus, dehydrogenase, catalase and polyphenol oxidase. The result showed that microbial remediation with indigenous bacteria was more effective for remedying Cr(VI)-contaminated soils with high pH value than chemical remediation with ferrous sulphate. In addition, the fuzzy comprehensive evaluation method was proven to be a useful tool for monitoring the quality change in chromium-contaminated soils. PMID:23784058

  17. BIOLOGICAL AMENDMENTS AND CROP ROTATIONS FOR MANAGING SOIL MICROBIAL COMMUNITIES AND SOILBORNE DISEASES OF POTATO

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Various biological amendments, including commercial biocontrol agents, microbial inoculants, mycorrhizae, and an aerobic compost tea (CT), were evaluated, alone and in conjunction with different crop rotations, for their efficacy in introducing beneficial microorganisms, affecting soil microbial com...

  18. Biological and physical influences on soil 14CO2 seasonal dynamics in a temperate hardwood forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phillips, C. L.; McFarlane, K. J.; Risk, D.; Desai, A. R.

    2013-07-01

    While radiocarbon (14C) abundance in standing stocks of soil carbon has been used to evaluate rates of soil carbon turnover on timescales of several years to centuries, soil-respired 14CO2 measurements are an important tool for identifying more immediate responses to disturbance and climate change. Soil 14CO2 data are often temporally sparse, however, and could be interpreted better with more context for typical seasonal ranges and trends. We report on a semi-high-frequency sampling campaign to distinguish physical and biological drivers of soil 14CO2 at a temperate forest site in Northern Wisconsin, USA. We sampled 14CO2 profiles every three weeks during snow-free months through 2012, in three intact plots and one trenched plot that excluded roots. Respired 14CO2 declined through the summer in intact plots, shifting from an older C composition that contained more bomb 14C, to a younger composition more closely resembling present 14C levels in the atmosphere. In the trenched plot respired 14C was variable but remained comparatively higher than in intact plots, reflecting older bomb-enriched 14C sources. Although respired 14CO2 from intact plots correlated with soil moisture, related analyses did not support a clear cause-and-effect relationship with moisture. The initial decrease in 14CO2 from spring to midsummer could be explained by increases in 14C-deplete root respiration; however, 14CO2 continued to decline in late summer after root activity decreased. We also investigated whether soil moisture impacted vertical partitioning of CO2 production, but found this had little effect on respired 14CO2 because CO2 contained modern bomb-C at depth, even in the trenched plot. This surprising result contrasted with decades to centuries-old pre-bomb CO2 produced in lab incubations of the same soils. Our results suggest that root-derived C and other recent C sources had dominant impacts on 14CO2 in situ, even at depth. We propose that 14CO2 may have declined through late summer in intact plots because of continued microbial turnover of root-derived C, following declines in root respiration. Our results agree with other studies showing large seasonal fluctuations in respired ?14CO2, and suggest root C inputs are an important driver.

  19. Effect of activated carbon on microbial bioavailability of phenanthrene in soils

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Y.; Hunter, W.; Tao, S.; Crowley, D.; Gan, J.

    2009-11-15

    Bioavailability is a governing factor that controls the rate of biological degradation of hydrophobic organic contaminants in soil. Among the solid phases that can adsorb hydrophobic organic contaminants in soil, black carbon (BC) exerts a particularly significant effect on phase distribution. However, knowledge on the effect of BC on the microbial availability of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in soil is still limited. In the present study, the effect of a coal-derived activated carbon on the bioavailability of phenanthrene (PHE) during its degradation by Mycobacterium vanbaalenii PYR-1 was measured in three soils. The freely dissolved concentration of PHE was concurrently determined in soil solutions using disposable polydimethylsiloxane fibers. The results showed that PHE mineralization was significantly inhibited after addition of activated carbon in all test soils. After 216 h, only 5.20, 5.83, and 6.85% of PHE was degraded in the 0.5% BC-amended soils initially containing organic carbon at 0.23, 2.1, and 7.1%, respectively. Significant correlation was found between PHE degradability and freely dissolved concentration, suggesting that BC affected PHE bioavailability by decreasing chemical activity. The effect of activated carbon in the amended soils was attributed to its enhancement of soil surface areas and pore volumes. Results from the present study clearly highlighted the importance of BC for influencing the microbial availability of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in soils.

  20. Analysis of Rit signaling and biological activity.

    PubMed

    Andres, Douglas A; Rudolph, Jennifer L; Sengoku, Tomoko; Shi, Geng-Xian

    2006-01-01

    Rit (Ras-like expressed in many tissues) is the founding member of a novel subgroup within the larger Ras superfamily of small GTP-binding proteins. Although Rit shares more than 50% amino acid identity with Ras, it contains a unique effector domain in common with the closely related Rin and Drosophila Ric proteins and lacks the C-terminal lipidation motifs critical for the membrane association and biological activity of many Ras proteins. Interestingly, whereas Rit has only modest transforming ability when assayed in NIH 3T3 cells, Rit exhibits neuronal differentiation activities comparable to those of oncogenic mutants of Ras when assayed in PC12 and other neuronal cell lines. This cell-type specificity is explained in part by the ability of Rit to selectively activate the neuronal Raf isoform, B-Raf. Importantly, Rit seems to play a critical role in neurotrophin-mediated MAP kinase signaling, because Rit gene silencing significantly alters NGF-dependent MAP kinase signaling and neuronal differentiation. In this chapter, we discuss the reagents and methods used to characterize Rit-mediated signaling to MAP kinase-signaling pathways to determine the extracellular stimuli that regulate Rit activation and to characterize Rit-induced neuronal differentiation. PMID:16757348

  1. Soil Biological Engineering to Enhance your Bottom Line

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Despite the importance of soil to all life on Earth, soil is the not-well-understood ‘big black box’. Therefore, the next revolution in agriculture needs not to be a green revolution or an iron (i.e. equipment) revolution; it needs to be a brown revolution. In this brown revolution, the root of th...

  2. Soil biological fertility: Foundation for the next revolution in agriculture?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Feeding the worlds population in 40 years will require improved efficiency in the use of plant nutrients and enhancement of the soil resource. Over the past 60 years, agricultural production has rapidly increased; however, continued degradation of the soil resource may limit further increases. Imp...

  3. Revisiting classic water erosion models in drylands: The strong impact of biological soil crusts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bowker, M.A.; Belnap, J.; Bala, Chaudhary V.; Johnson, N.C.

    2008-01-01

    Soil erosion and subsequent degradation has been a contributor to societal collapse in the past and is one of the major expressions of desertification in arid regions. The revised universal soil loss equation (RUSLE) models soil lost to water erosion as a function of climate erosivity (the degree to which rainfall can result in erosion), topography, soil erodibility, and land use/management. The soil erodibility factor (K) is primarily based upon inherent soil properties (those which change slowly or not at all) such as soil texture and organic matter content, while the cover/management factor (C) is based on several parameters including biological soil crust (BSC) cover. We examined the effect of two more precise indicators of BSC development, chlorophyll a and exopolysaccharides (EPS), upon soil stability, which is closely inversely related to soil loss in an erosion event. To examine the relative influence of these elements of the C factor to the K factor, we conducted our investigation across eight strongly differing soils in the 0.8 million ha Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. We found that within every soil group, chlorophyll a was a moderate to excellent predictor of soil stability (R2 = 0.21-0.75), and consistently better than EPS. Using a simple structural equation model, we explained over half of the variance in soil stability and determined that the direct effect of chlorophyll a was 3?? more important than soil group in determining soil stability. Our results suggest that, holding the intensity of erosive forces constant, the acceleration or reduction of soil erosion in arid landscapes will primarily be an outcome of management practices. This is because the factor which is most influential to soil erosion, BSC development, is also among the most manageable, implying that water erosion in drylands has a solution. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd.

  4. The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) applications activity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission is one of the first-tier satellite missions recommended by the U.S. National Research Council Committee on Earth Science and Applications from Space. The SMAP mission 1 is under development by NASA and is scheduled for launch late in 2014. The SMAP mea...

  5. Hydrazine degradation and its effect on microbial activity in soil

    SciTech Connect

    Ou, L.T.; Street, J.J.

    1987-01-01

    Considerable information has been accumulated on the toxicity of hydrazine to soil bacterial cultures and on the degradation of hydrazne by soil bacterial cultures. The activities of the autotrophic nitrifiers Nitrosomonas and Nitrobacter and of denitrifying bacteria, and the growth of Enterobacter cloacae, were all inhibited by hydrazine. An enzyme system has been found in heterotrophic N/sub 2/-fixing bacteria capable of degrading hydrazine. Information concerning the effect of hydrazine on microbial activity in soils is not available, however. Accidental spills to soil can occur during transportation and storage. Therefore, this study was initiated to determine degradation rates of hydrazine in soils and its effect on soil microbial activity.

  6. Biologically Active and Antimicrobial Peptides from Plants

    PubMed Central

    Salas, Carlos E.; Badillo-Corona, Jesus A.; Ramírez-Sotelo, Guadalupe; Oliver-Salvador, Carmen

    2015-01-01

    Bioactive peptides are part of an innate response elicited by most living forms. In plants, they are produced ubiquitously in roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves, highlighting their physiological importance. While most of the bioactive peptides produced in plants possess microbicide properties, there is evidence that they are also involved in cellular signaling. Structurally, there is an overall similarity when comparing them with those derived from animal or insect sources. The biological action of bioactive peptides initiates with the binding to the target membrane followed in most cases by membrane permeabilization and rupture. Here we present an overview of what is currently known about bioactive peptides from plants, focusing on their antimicrobial activity and their role in the plant signaling network and offering perspectives on their potential application. PMID:25815307

  7. Biologically active peptides in milk proteins.

    PubMed

    Meisel, H; Frister, H; Schlimme, E

    1989-12-01

    Bioactive peptides have been identified as digestion products of several food proteins. All the bioactive sequences are hidden in an inactive state inside the polypeptide chain of the larger protein. Milk proteins are a rich source of biologically active peptides such as exorphins (casomorphins), phosphopeptides and immunopeptides. Such peptides are released during intestinal digestion of caseins and whey proteins. They may be involved in regulation of nutrient entry and influence the postprandial metabolism via stimulation of the secretion of hormones. Furthermore, they may exert a stimulating effect on the immune system. These findings offer new aspects for evaluating the nutritive value of food proteins. Moreover, bioactive peptides have already found interesting applications as dietary supplements and as pharmaceutical preparations. PMID:2694639

  8. Biologically active and antimicrobial peptides from plants.

    PubMed

    Salas, Carlos E; Badillo-Corona, Jesus A; Ramrez-Sotelo, Guadalupe; Oliver-Salvador, Carmen

    2015-01-01

    Bioactive peptides are part of an innate response elicited by most living forms. In plants, they are produced ubiquitously in roots, seeds, flowers, stems, and leaves, highlighting their physiological importance. While most of the bioactive peptides produced in plants possess microbicide properties, there is evidence that they are also involved in cellular signaling. Structurally, there is an overall similarity when comparing them with those derived from animal or insect sources. The biological action of bioactive peptides initiates with the binding to the target membrane followed in most cases by membrane permeabilization and rupture. Here we present an overview of what is currently known about bioactive peptides from plants, focusing on their antimicrobial activity and their role in the plant signaling network and offering perspectives on their potential application. PMID:25815307

  9. Biotransformations and biological activities of hop flavonoids.

    PubMed

    Karabin, Marcel; Hudcova, Tereza; Jelinek, Lukas; Dostalek, Pavel

    2015-11-01

    Female hop cones are used extensively in the brewing industry, but there is now increasing interest in possible uses of hops for non-brewing purposes, especially in the pharmaceutical industry. Among pharmaceutically important compounds from hops are flavonoids, having proven anticarcinogenic, antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and estrogenic effects. In this review we aim to present current knowledge on the biotransformation of flavonoids from hop cones with respect to products, catalysis and conversion. A list of microbial enzymatic reactions associated with gastrointestinal microbiota is presented. A comparative analysis of the biological activities of hop flavonoids and their biotransformation products is described, indicating where further research has potential for applications in the pharmaceutical industry. PMID:25708386

  10. Biological Treatment of Petroleum in Radiologically Contaminated Soil

    SciTech Connect

    BERRY, CHRISTOPHER

    2005-11-14

    This chapter describes ex situ bioremediation of the petroleum portion of radiologically co-contaminated soils using microorganisms isolated from a waste site and innovative bioreactor technology. Microorganisms first isolated and screened in the laboratory for bioremediation of petroleum were eventually used to treat soils in a bioreactor. The bioreactor treated soils contaminated with over 20,000 mg/kg total petroleum hydrocarbon and reduced the levels to less than 100 mg/kg in 22 months. After treatment, the soils were permanently disposed as low-level radiological waste. The petroleum and radiologically contaminated soil (PRCS) bioreactor operated using bioventing to control the supply of oxygen (air) to the soil being treated. The system treated 3.67 tons of PCRS amended with weathered compost, ammonium nitrate, fertilizer, and water. In addition, a consortium of microbes (patent pending) isolated at the Savannah River National Laboratory from a petroleum-contaminated site was added to the PRCS system. During operation, degradation of petroleum waste was accounted for through monitoring of carbon dioxide levels in the system effluent. The project demonstrated that co-contaminated soils could be successfully treated through bioventing and bioaugmentation to remove petroleum contamination to levels below 100 mg/kg while protecting workers and the environment from radiological contamination.

  11. A microcosm approach to assessing the effects of earthworm inoculation and oat cover cropping on CO2 fluxes and biological properties in an amended semiarid soil.

    PubMed

    Caravaca, F; Pera, A; Masciandaro, G; Ceccanti, B; Roldn, A

    2005-06-01

    We designed a microcosm experiment to assess the influence of inoculation with Eisenia foetida earthworms and the establishment of an Avena sativa cover crop on biological (enzyme activities and labile carbon fractions) soil quality indicators in a soil treated with a composted organic residue, and to determine the contribution of these treatments to carbon dioxide emissions from the soil to the atmosphere of the microcosm. The microcosms were incubated for 53 days under 28 degrees C/18 degrees C day/night temperatures. The addition of earthworms and the planting of A. sativa increased dehydrogenase activity of compost amended soil by about 44% after 23 days of incubation. The metabolic potential, calculated as the ratio dehydrogenase activity/water soluble C, was higher in the compost amended soil planted with A. sativa. The highest total amount of CO2-C evolved occurred in the soil treated with composted residue and earthworms (about 40% of the total amount of CO2 evolved came from earthworm activity). The planting of A. sativa increased the decomposition rate constant of organic matter in the amended soil but decreased the potentially mineralizable C pool. In conclusion, the establishment of an A. sativa cover crop and the addition of E. foetida to a degraded agricultural soil treated with composted residue were effective treatments for improving the biological and biochemical quality and the metabolic potential of the soil. PMID:15894048

  12. Biological responses of agricultural soils to fly-ash amendment.

    PubMed

    Singh, Rajeev Pratap; Sharma, Bhavisha; Sarkar, Abhijit; Sengupta, Chandan; Singh, Pooja; Ibrahim, Mahamad Hakimi

    2014-01-01

    The volume of solid waste produced in the world is increasing annually, and disposing of such wastes is a growing problem. Fly ash (FA) is a form of solid waste that is derived from the combustion of coal. Research has shown that fly ash may be disposed of by using it to amend agricultural soils. This review addresses the feasibility of amending agricultural field soils with fly ash for the purpose of improvings oil health and enhancing the production of agricultural crops. The current annual production of major coal combustion residues (CCRs) is estimated to be -600 million worldwide, of which about 500 million t (70-80%) is FA (Ahmaruzzaman 2010). More than 112 million t of FA is generated annually in India alone, and projections show that the production (including both FA and bottom ash) may exceed 170 million t per annum by 2015 (Pandey et al. 2009; Pandey and Singh 20 I 0). Managing this industrial by-product is a big challenge, because more is produced each year, and disposal poses a growing environmental problem.Studies on FA clearly shows that its application as an amendment to agricultural soils can significantly improve soil quality, and produce higher soil fertility. What FA application method is best and what level of application is appropriate for any one soil depends on the following factors: type of soil treated, crop grown, the prevailing agro climatic condition and the character of the FA used. Although utilizing FA in agricultural soils may help address solid waste disposal problems and may enhance agricultural production, its use has potential adverse effects also. In particular, using it in agriculture may enhance amounts of radionuclides and heavy metals that reach soils, and may therefore increase organism exposures in some instances. PMID:24984834

  13. NASA Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) Applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orr, Barron; Moran, M. Susan; Escobar, Vanessa; Brown, Molly E.

    2014-05-01

    The launch of the NASA Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission in 2014 will provide global soil moisture and freeze-thaw measurements at moderate resolution (9 km) with latency as short as 24 hours. The resolution, latency and global coverage of SMAP products will enable new applications in the fields of weather, climate, drought, flood, agricultural production, human health and national security. To prepare for launch, the SMAP mission has engaged more than 25 Early Adopters. Early Adopters are users who have a need for SMAP-like soil moisture or freeze-thaw data, and who agreed to apply their own resources to demonstrate the utility of SMAP data for their particular system or model. In turn, the SMAP mission agreed to provide Early Adopters with simulated SMAP data products and pre-launch calibration and validation data from SMAP field campaigns, modeling, and synergistic studies. The applied research underway by Early Adopters has provided fundamental knowledge of how SMAP data products can be scaled and integrated into users' policy, business and management activities to improve decision-making efforts. This presentation will cover SMAP applications including weather and climate forecasting, vehicle mobility estimation, quantification of greenhouse gas emissions, management of urban potable water supply, and prediction of crop yield. The presentation will end with a discussion of potential international applications with focus on the ESA/CEOS TIGER Initiative entitled "looking for water in Africa", the United Nations (UN) Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) which carries a specific mandate focused on Africa, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) which lists soil moisture as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV), and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) which reported a food and nutrition crisis in the Sahel.

  14. Modification of soil microbial activity and several hydrolases in a forest soil artificially contaminated with copper

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bellas, Rosa; Leirs, M? Carmen; Gil-Sotres, Fernando; Trasar-Cepeda, Carmen

    2010-05-01

    Soils have long been exposed to the adverse effects of human activities, which negatively affect soil biological activity. As a result of their functions and ubiquitous presence microorganisms can serve as environmental indicators of soil pollution. Some features of soil microorganisms, such as the microbial biomass size, respiration rate, and enzyme activity are often used as bioindicators of the ecotoxicity of heavy metals. Although copper is essential for microorganisms, excessive concentrations have a negative influence on processes mediated by microorganisms. In this study we measured the response of some microbial indicators to Cu pollution in a forest soil, with the aim of evaluating their potential for predicting Cu contamination. Samples of an Ah horizon from a forest soil under oakwood vegetation (Quercus robur L.) were contaminated in the laboratory with copper added at different doses (0, 120, 360, 1080 and 3240 mg kg-1) as CuCl22H2O. The soil samples were kept for 7 days at 25 C and at a moisture content corresponding to the water holding capacity, and thereafter were analysed for carbon and nitrogen mineralization capacity, microbial biomass C, seed germination and root elongation tests, and for urease, phosphomonoesterase, catalase and -glucosidase activities. In addition, carbon mineralization kinetics were studied, by plotting the log of residual C against incubation time, and the metabolic coefficient, qCO2, was estimated. Both organic carbon and nitrogen mineralization were lower in polluted samples, with the greatest decrease observed in the sample contaminated with 1080 mg kg-1. In all samples carbon mineralization followed first order kinetics; the C mineralization constant was lower in contaminated than in uncontaminated samples and, in general, decreased with increasing doses of copper. Moreover, it appears that copper contamination not only reduced the N mineralization capacity, but also modified the N mineralization process, since in the contaminated samples all of the inorganic nitrogen was present as ammonium, probably because of inhibition of nitrification. There was a marked decrease in biomass-C with addition of copper, and the decrease was more acute at intermediate doses (average decrease, 73%). Despite the decreases in microbial biomass and mineralized C, the value of qCO2 increased after the addition of copper. Urease activity was strongly affected by the presence of copper and the decrease was proportional to the dose; the activity at the highest dose was only 96% of that in the uncontaminated sample. Phosphomonoesterase activity was also affected by addition of copper; the reduction in activity was less than for urease and the greatest reduction was observed for the dose of 1080 mg kg-1 of copper. Catalase activity was affected by the contamination, but no clear trend was observed in relation to the dose of copper. -glucosidase was scarcely modified by the contamination but an increase in activity was observed at the highest dose of copper. Seed germination was not affected by copper contamination, since it only showed a clear decrease for the sample contaminated with the highest dose of copper, while root elongation decreased sharply with doses higher than 120 mg kg-1 of copper. The combined germination-elongation index followed a similar pattern to that of root elongation. For all investigated properties showing a reduction of more than 50%, the response to copper contamination was fitted to a sigmoidal dose-response model, in order to estimate the ED50 values. The ED50 values were calculated for microbial biomass, urease, root elongation and germination-elongation index, and similar values were obtained, ranging from 340 to 405 mg kg-1 Cu. The ED50 values may therefore provide a good estimation of soil deterioration.

  15. Soil physicochemical and biological properties of paddy-upland rotation: a review.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Wei; Lv, Teng-Fei; Chen, Yong; Westby, Anthony P; Ren, Wan-Jun

    2014-01-01

    Paddy-upland rotation is an unavoidable cropping system for Asia to meet the increasing demand for food. The reduction in grain yields has increased the research interest on the soil properties of rice-based cropping systems. Paddy-upland rotation fields are unique from other wetland or upland soils, because they are associated with frequent cycling between wetting and drying under anaerobic and aerobic conditions; such rotations affect the soil C and N cycles, make the chemical speciation and biological effectiveness of soil nutrient elements varied with seasons, increase the diversity of soil organisms, and make the soil physical properties more difficult to analyze. Consequently, maintaining or improving soil quality at a desirable level has become a complicated issue. Therefore, fully understanding the soil characteristics of paddy-upland rotation is necessary for the sustainable development of the system. In this paper, we offer helpful insight into the effect of rice-upland combinations on the soil chemical, physical, and biological properties, which could provide guidance for reasonable cultivation management measures and contribute to the improvement of soil quality and crop yield. PMID:24995366

  16. Soil Physicochemical and Biological Properties of Paddy-Upland Rotation: A Review

    PubMed Central

    Lv, Teng-Fei; Chen, Yong; Westby, Anthony P.; Ren, Wan-Jun

    2014-01-01

    Paddy-upland rotation is an unavoidable cropping system for Asia to meet the increasing demand for food. The reduction in grain yields has increased the research interest on the soil properties of rice-based cropping systems. Paddy-upland rotation fields are unique from other wetland or upland soils, because they are associated with frequent cycling between wetting and drying under anaerobic and aerobic conditions; such rotations affect the soil C and N cycles, make the chemical speciation and biological effectiveness of soil nutrient elements varied with seasons, increase the diversity of soil organisms, and make the soil physical properties more difficult to analyze. Consequently, maintaining or improving soil quality at a desirable level has become a complicated issue. Therefore, fully understanding the soil characteristics of paddy-upland rotation is necessary for the sustainable development of the system. In this paper, we offer helpful insight into the effect of rice-upland combinations on the soil chemical, physical, and biological properties, which could provide guidance for reasonable cultivation management measures and contribute to the improvement of soil quality and crop yield. PMID:24995366

  17. Efficiency of soil organic and inorganic amendments on the remediation of a contaminated mine soil: II. Biological and ecotoxicological evaluation.

    PubMed

    Pardo, T; Clemente, R; Alvarenga, P; Bernal, M P

    2014-07-01

    The feasibility of two organic materials (pig slurry and compost) in combination with hydrated lime for the remediation of a highly acidic trace elements (TEs) contaminated mine soil was assessed in a mesocosm experiment. The effects of the amendments on soil biochemical and ecotoxicological properties were evaluated and related with the main physicochemical characteristics of soil and soil solution. The original soil showed impaired basic ecological functions due to the high availability of TEs, its acidic pH and high salinity. The three amendments slightly reduced the direct and indirect soil toxicity to plants, invertebrates and microorganisms as a consequence of the TEs' mobility decrease in topsoil, reducing therefore the soil associated risks. The organic amendments, especially compost, thanks to the supply of essential nutrients, were able to improve soil health, as they stimulated plant growth and significantly increased enzyme activities related with the key nutrients in soil. Therefore, the use of compost or pig slurry, in combination with hydrated lime, decreased soil ecotoxicity and seems to be a suitable management strategy for the remediation of highly acidic TEs contaminated soils. PMID:24875876

  18. Nonexercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT): environment and biology.

    PubMed

    Levine, James A

    2004-05-01

    Nonexercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) is the energy expended for everything that is not sleeping, eating, or sports-like exercise. It includes the energy expended walking to work, typing, performing yard work, undertaking agricultural tasks, and fidgeting. NEAT can be measured by one of two approaches. The first is to measure or estimate total NEAT. Here, total daily energy expenditure is measured, and from it "basal metabolic rate-plus-thermic effect of food" is subtracted. The second is the factoral approach, whereby the components of NEAT are quantified, and total NEAT is calculated by summing these components. The amount of NEAT that humans perform represents the product of the amount and types of physical activities and the thermogenic cost of each activity. The factors that impact a human's NEAT are readily divisible into environmental factors, such as occupation or dwelling within a "concrete jungle," and biological factors such as weight, gender, and body composition. The combined impact of these factors explains the substantial variance in human NEAT. The variability in NEAT might be viewed as random, but human and animal data contradict this. It appears that changes in NEAT subtly accompany experimentally induced changes in energy balance and are important in the physiology of weight change. Inadequate modulation of NEAT plus a sedentary lifestyle may thus be important in obesity. It then becomes intriguing to dissect mechanistic studies that delineate how NEAT is regulated into neural, peripheral, and humoral factors. A scheme is described in this review in which NEAT corresponds to a carefully regulated "tank" of physical activity that is crucial for weight control. PMID:15102614

  19. Sulfation and biological activities of konjac glucomannan.

    PubMed

    Bo, Surina; Muschin, Tegshi; Kanamoto, Taisei; Nakashima, Hideki; Yoshida, Takashi

    2013-05-15

    The sulfation of konjac glucomannan and its anti-HIV and blood anticoagulant activities were investigated. Konjac glucomannan is a polysaccharide occurring naturally in konjac plant tubers and has high molecular weights. Solubility in water is very low, and the aqueous solutions at low concentrations have high viscosity. Before sulfation, hydrolysis by diluted sulfuric acid was carried out to decrease the molecular weights of Mn=19.2 10(4)-0.2 10(4). Sulfation with piperidine-N-sulfonic acid or SO3-pyridine complex gave sulfated konjac glucomannans with molecular weights of Mn=1.0 10(4)-0.4 10(4) and degrees of sulfation (DS) of 1.3-1.4. It was found that the sulfated konjac glucomannans had potent anti-HIV activity at a 50% effective concentration, (EC50) of 1.2-1.3 ?g/ml, which was almost as high as that of an AIDS drug, ddC, whose EC50=3.2 ?g/ml, and moderate blood anticoagulant activity, AA=0.8-22.7 units/mg, compared to those of standard sulfated polysaccharides, curdlan (10 units/mg) and dextran (22.7 units/mg) sulfates. Structural analysis of sulfated konjac glucomannans with negatively charged sulfated groups was performed by high resolution NMR, and the interaction between poly-l-lysine with positively charged amino groups as a model compound of proteins and peptides was measured by surface plasmon resonance measurement, suggesting that the sulfated konjac glucomannans had a high binding stability on immobilized poly-l-lysine. The binding of sulfated konjac glucomannan was concentration-dependent, and the biological activity of the sulfated konjac glucomannans may be due to electrostatic interaction between the sulfate and amino groups. PMID:23544648

  20. Biological interactions between soil saprotrophic fungi and Ascaris suum eggs.

    PubMed

    Blaszkowska, Joanna; Wojcik, Anna; Kurnatowski, Piotr; Szwabe, Katarzyna

    2013-09-23

    The in vitro effect of saprotrophic soil fungi on the embryonic development of Ascaris suum was evaluated. The fungi tested were Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus terreus, Penicillium citrinum, Penicillium expansum, Fusarium oxysporum and Trichothecium roseum, isolated from children's recreation areas in the city of Lodz (Poland). Each species was co-cultured with A. suum egg suspension (6 × 10(3)eggs/ml) at 25 ± 2°C for 60 days. Each day, 100 eggs were randomly collected and their developmental stage was classified macroscopically. Additionally, at days 4, 7, 14, 28, 42 and 60 of incubation, the viability and the percentage of eggs with morphological altered embryo/larva were determined in each sample. Microscopic examination revealed that exposure of eggs to the mycelium of examined fungi inhibited embryogenesis of A. suum. All control culture eggs reached L2 larval stage after 26 days of incubation, while the experimental cultures did so after 32-51 days, depending on the fungal species. Three species were found to exhibit very high inhibitory activity on A. suum egg development: A. terreus, P. expansum and F. oxysporum. Embryopathies and non-viable embryos/larvae were observed significantly more frequently in the eggs co-cultured with fungal species than in control cultures. The fungus-exposed eggs revealed morphological alternations in the early zygotic cleavage, blastula, gastrula and larval stages. After 60 days of incubation with mycelia of P. expansum, A. terreus and F. oxysporum, the mortality of the larvae reached 55.3-60.3%. P. expansum and F. oxysporum showed hyphal penetration and internal egg colonization of A. suum eggs. PMID:23534981

  1. Biological Activities of Plant Pigments Betalains.

    PubMed

    Gandía-Herrero, Fernando; Escribano, Josefa; García-Carmona, Francisco

    2014-08-13

    Abstract Betalains are a family of natural pigments present in most plants of the order Caryophyllales. They provide colors ranging from yellow to violet to structures that in other plants are colored by anthocyanins. These include edible fruits and roots but also flowers, stems, and bracts. The recent characterization of different bioactivities in experiments with betalain-containing extracts and purified pigments has renewed the interest of the research community in these molecules used by the food industry as natural colorants. Studies with multiple cancer cell lines have demonstrated a high chemopreventive potential that finds in vitro support in a strong antiradical and antioxidant activity. Experiments in vivo with model animals and bioavailability studies reinforce the possible role played by betalains in the diet. This work provides a critical review of all the claimed biological activities of betalains, showing that the bioactivities described might be supported by the high antiradical capacity of their structural unit, betalamic acid. Although more investigations with purified compounds are needed, the current evidences suggest a strong health-promoting potential. PMID:25118005

  2. Potential biological activity of acacia honey.

    PubMed

    Muhammad, Aliyu; Odunola, Oyeronke A; Ibrahim, Mohammed A; Sallau, Abdullahi B; Erukainure, Ochuko L; Aimola, Idown A; Malami, Ibrahim

    2016-01-01

    Recent advances in functional foods-based research have increasingly become an area of major interest because it affects human health and activities. Functional foods are classes of foods with health promoting and disease preventing properties in addition to multiple nutritional values and of such type is honey. Acacia honey is a type of honey produced by bees (Apis mellifera) fed on Acacia flowers, hence the name. This review focuses on the potential biological activities of Acacia honey which includes quality, antioxidant, immuno-modulatory, antiproliferative and neurological properties at in vitro and in vivo levels. Based on our review, Acacia honey used from various researches is of high purity, contains some bioactive compounds ranging from vitamins, phenolics, flavonoids and fatty acids. It's highly nutritional with strong antioxidant and immuno-modulatory potentials which may therefore be considered a potential candidate for both cancer prevention and treatment. Neurologically, it may be considered as a viable therapeutic agent in the management of Alzheimer's disease. PMID:26709666

  3. Natural physical and biological processes compromise the long-term performance of compacted soil caps

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, E.D.

    1995-12-01

    Compacted soil barriers are components of essentially all caps placed on closed waste disposal sites. The intended functions of soil barriers in waste facility caps include restricting infiltration of water and release of gases and vapors, either independently or in combination with synthetic membrane barriers, and protecting other manmade or natural barrier components. Review of the performance of installed soil barriers and of natural processes affecting their performance indicates that compacted soil caps may function effectively for relatively short periods (years to decades), but natural physical and biological processes can be expected to cause them to fail in the long term (decades to centuries). This paper addresses natural physical and biological processes that compromise the performance of compacted soil caps and suggests measures that may reduce the adverse consequences of these natural failure mechanisms.

  4. [Effects and Biological Response on Bioremediation of Petroleum Contaminated Soil].

    PubMed

    Yang, Qian; Wu, Man-li; Nie, Mai-qian; Wang, Ting-ting; Zhang, Ming-hui

    2015-05-01

    Bioaugmentation and biostimulation were used to remediate petroleum-contaminated soil which were collected from Zichang city in North of Shaanxi. The optimal bioremediation method was obtained by determining the total petroleum hydrocarbon(TPH) using the infrared spectroscopy. During the bioremediation, number of degrading strains, TPH catabolic genes, and soil microbial community diversity were determined by Most Probable Number (MPN), polymerase chain reaction (PCR) combined agarose electrophoresis, and PCR-denaturing gradient electrophoresis (DGGE). The results in different treatments showed different biodegradation effects towards total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH). Biostimulation by adding N and P to soils achieved the best degradation effects towards TPH, and the bioaugmentation was achieved by inoculating strain SZ-1 to soils. Further analysis indicated the positive correlation between catabolic genes and TPH removal efficiency. During the bioremediation, the number of TPH and alkanes degrading strains was higher than the number of aromatic degrading strains. The results of PCR-DGGE showed microbial inoculums could enhance microbial community functional diversity. These results contribute to understand the ecologically microbial effects during the bioremediation of petroleum-polluted soil. PMID:26314140

  5. Changes of soil organic matter and microbial activity in irrigated and non irrigated olive groves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kavvadias, Victor; Papadopoulou, Maria; Theocharopoulos, Sideris; Vavoulidou, Evagelia; Doula, Maria; Reppas, Spiros

    2014-05-01

    The implementation of olive cultivation techniques in Greece has not been systematically tested under the prevailing Mediterranean conditions. A LIFE+ project was initiated (oLIVE-CLIMA; LIFE 11/ENV/000942) aiming to introduce new management practices in olive tree crops that lead to increased carbon dioxide uptake by plants as well as carbon sequestration from the atmosphere and reverse the trend of soil organic matter decline, erosion and desertification. This paper presents data on soil organic matter and microbial activity from a soil campaign in a pilot region in Greece, and particularly in the area of Chora, prefecture of Messinia, South west Peloponnese. The soil campaign took place during the period December 2012-February 2013. Twelve soil parcels of olive groves were selected (6 irrigated and 6 rainfed) and in each soil parcel six composite soil samples were taken from 0-10 cm depth at equal intervals along a straight line of the trunk of the tree to the middle of the distance from the nearest tree of the next tree series. The first three samples were under olive tree canopy. An additional composite sample was taken at depth of 10-40 cm. Soil samples were analyzed for soil physicochemical and biological properties. In this study results for total organic carbon (TOC), soil basal microbial respiration (BR), microbial biomass C (MB-C) from the region of Messinia, are presented. Organic matter was determined by dichromate oxidation. The microbial activity was measured by the amount of CO2 evolution, while microbial biomass C was determined by substrate-induced respiration, after the addition of glucose. The results showed considerable differences in TOC, BR and MB-C associated with the sampling position and soil depth. The higher TOC, BR and MB-C values, in most cases, were determined in samples taken from points under the canopy, but not close to the tree trunk compared to the sampling points outside the canopy. This indicates the positive effect of rhizosphere and the favorable soil moisture conditions under tree canopy on soil microbial activities. TOC, BR and MB-C values were considerably lower in soil depth of 10-40cm compared with 0-10 cm in both irrigated and rainfed soil parcels. Moreover BR and MB-C was higher in irrigated soil parcels compared with rainfed ones suggesting that the periodic irrigation significantly enhances the soil microbial activity. There were no considerable differences in TOC. For this the TOC and potential activity of microbial community can contribute in the soil nutrient and irrigation management guidelines in order to exploit the utilization of productive soils in the region under studied.

  6. Allelopathic activity in wheat-conventional and wheat-no-till soils: Development of soil extract bioassays.

    PubMed

    Blum, U; Gerig, T M; Worsham, A D; Holappa, L D; King, L D

    1992-12-01

    The primary objective of this research was to determine if soil extracts could be used directly in bioassays for the detection of allelopathic activity. Here we describe: (1) a way to estimate levels of allelopathic compounds in soil; (2) how pH, solute potential, and/or ion content of extracts may modify the action of allelopathic compounds on germination and radicle and hypocotyl length of crimson clover (Trifolium incarnatum L.) and ivyleaved morning glory (Ipomoea hederacea L. Jacquin.); and (3) how biological activity of soil extracts may be determined. A water-autoclave extraction procedure was chosen over the immediate-water and 5-hr EDTA extraction procedures, because the autoclave procedure was effective in extracting solution and reversibly bound ferulic acid as well as phenolic acids from wheat debris. The resulting soil extracts were used directly in germination bioassays. A mixture of phenolic acids similar to that obtained from wheat-no-till soils did not affect germination of clover or morning glory and radicle and hypocotyl length of morning glory. The mixture did, however, reduce radicle and hypocotyl length of clover. Individual phenolic acids also did not inhibit germination, but did reduce radicle and hypocotyl length of both species. 6-MBOA (6-methoxy-2,3-benzoxazolinone), a conversion product of 2-o-glucosyl-7-methoxy-1,4-benzoxazin-3-one, a hydroxamic acid in living wheat plants, inhibited germination and radicle and hypocotyl length of clover and morning glory. 6-MBOA, however, was not detected in wheat debris, stubble, or soil extracts. Total phenolic acids (FC) in extracts were determined with Folin and Ciocalteu's phenol reagent. Levels of FC in wheat-conventionaltill soil extracts were not related to germination or radicle and hypocotyl length of either species. Levels of FC in wheat-no-till soil extracts were also not related to germination of clover or morning glory, but were inversely related to radicle and hypocotyl length of clover and morning glory. FC values, solute potential, and acidity of wheat-no-till soil extracts appeared to be independent (additive) in action on clover radicle and hypocotyl length. Radicle and hypocotyl length of clover was inversely related to increasing FC and solute potential and directly related to decreasing acidity. Biological activity of extracts was determined best from slopes of radicle and hypocotyl length obtained from bioassays of extract dilutions. Thus, data derived from the water-autoclave extraction procedure, FC analysis, and slope analysis for extract activity in conjunction with data on extract pH and solute potential can be used to estimate allelopathic activity of wheat-no-till soils. PMID:24254867

  7. Soil microbial activity and structure in mineralized terranes of the Western US

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blecker, S. W.; Stillings, L. L.; Decrappeo, N.; Ippolito, J.

    2009-12-01

    Mineralized terranes (areas enriched in metal-bearing minerals) occur throughout the Western US, and are characterized by highly variable soil trace metal concentrations across small spatial scales. Assuming that non-lithologic (extrinsic) soil forming factors are relatively constant between mineralized and unmineralized zones, these mineralized areas allowed us to evaluate the effect of lithology on soil microbial activity. We established the following study sites: 1) sage-grassland on a Mo/Cu deposit (Battle Mountain, NV); 2) pine-chaparral on Ni/Cr bearing rocks (Chinese Camp, CA); and 3) two pine woodland sites on acid-sulfate altered rocks (Reno, NV; Bridgeport, CA). Microbial, physical and chemical measurements were performed on soils from undisturbed mineralized areas and adjacent unmineralized areas to determine baseline conditions for comparison to sites disturbed by mining. A host of abiotic soil parameters, along with bioavailable (diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid (DTPA)-extractable) and total metals, were measured to examine their correlation with the following measures of microbial activity: enzyme assays (arylsulfatase, phosphatase, fluorescein diacetate hydrolysis), C/N mineralization potential, C substrate utilization (Biolog Ecoplate), and microbial biomass and community structure (phospholipid fatty acid analysis). Within the Battle Mountain study area, both microbial activity and structure were statistically similar between mineralized and unmineralized soils. Nutrient and metal concentrations were also similar; the only differences being higher Cu and lower P in the mineralized soils. Within the Chinese Camp study area, soil organic carbon and total nitrogen concentrations were similar between the serpentine (Ni/Cr bearing) and adjacent andesite soils, while differences were noted for other nutrients (S, P, Ca, Mg). For the serpentine soils, Co, Fe, Mn, and Ni showed the strongest correlations with microbial activity, where Cr, Mn showed the strongest correlations in the andesite soils. Measures of microbial activity were statistically similar, except for arylsulfatase and Biolog C substrate utilization, which were greater in the andesite soils. Biolog substrate utilization richness was greater for the andesite soils, which also showed greater fungal biomass compared to the serpentine soils. In the acid sulfate systems, most measures of microbial activity were reduced in the acid sulfate soils compared to the adjacent andesite soils. Lower pH and P, and greater Al concentrations in the acid sulfate soils are potential inhibitors of microbial activity, while greater concentrations of inorganic N suggest that N is not limiting in the acid sulfate soils. Biolog substrate utilization richness was much lower in the acid sulfate soils, which also exhibited a greater proportion of polymer and carbohydrate use compared to the andesite soils. Impacts on microbial activity and microbial community structure are depend on a combination of trace metal and nutrient concentrations within a given mineralization type. Improving our understanding of biotic/abiotic relationships in undisturbed systems should increase our understanding of these relationships in areas disturbed by mining.

  8. Monascus secondary metabolites: production and biological activity.

    PubMed

    Patakova, Petra

    2013-02-01

    The genus Monascus, comprising nine species, can reproduce either vegetatively with filaments and conidia or sexually by the formation of ascospores. The most well-known species of genus Monascus, namely, M. purpureus, M. ruber and M. pilosus, are often used for rice fermentation to produce red yeast rice, a special product used either for food coloring or as a food supplement with positive effects on human health. The colored appearance (red, orange or yellow) of Monascus-fermented substrates is produced by a mixture of oligoketide pigments that are synthesized by a combination of polyketide and fatty acid synthases. The major pigments consist of pairs of yellow (ankaflavin and monascin), orange (rubropunctatin and monascorubrin) and red (rubropunctamine and monascorubramine) compounds; however, more than 20 other colored products have recently been isolated from fermented rice or culture media. In addition to pigments, a group of monacolin substances and the mycotoxin citrinin can be produced by Monascus. Various non-specific biological activities (antimicrobial, antitumor, immunomodulative and others) of these pigmented compounds are, at least partly, ascribed to their reaction with amino group-containing compounds, i.e. amino acids, proteins or nucleic acids. Monacolins, in the form of β-hydroxy acids, inhibit hydroxymethylglutaryl-coenzyme A reductase, a key enzyme in cholesterol biosynthesis in animals and humans. PMID:23179468

  9. Suppression of annual Bromus tectorum by perennial Agropyron cristatum: roles of soil nitrogen availability and biological soil space

    PubMed Central

    Blank, Robert R.; Morgan, Tye; Allen, Fay

    2015-01-01

    Worldwide, exotic invasive grasses have caused numerous ecosystem perturbations. Rangelands of the western USA have experienced increases in the size and frequency of wildfires largely due to invasion by the annual grass Bromus tectorum. Rehabilitation of invaded rangelands is difficult; but long-term success is predicated on establishing healthy and dense perennial grass communities, which suppress B. tectorum. This paper reports on two experiments to increase our understanding of soil factors involved in suppression. Water was not limiting in this study. Growth of B. tectorum in soil conditioned by and competing with the exotic perennial Agropyron cristatum was far less relative to its growth without competition. When competing with A. cristatum, replacing a portion of conditioned soil with fresh soil before sowing of B. tectorum did not significantly increase its growth. The ability of conditioned soil to suppress B. tectorum was lost when it was separated from growing A. cristatum. Soil that suppressed B. tectorum growth was characterized by low mineral nitrogen (N) availability and a high molar ratio of NO2? in the solution-phase pool of NO2?+NO3?. Moreover, resin availability of NO2?+NO3? explained 66 % of the variability in B. tectorum above-ground mass, attesting to the importance of A. cristatum growth in reducing N availability to B. tectorum. Trials in which B. tectorum was suppressed the most were characterized by very high shoot/root mass ratios and roots that have less root hair growth relative to non-suppressed counterparts, suggesting co-opting of biological soil space by the perennial grass as another suppressive mechanism. Greater understanding of the role of biological soil space could be used to breed and select plant materials with traits that are more suppressive to invasive annual grasses. PMID:25603967

  10. Suppression of annual Bromus tectorum by perennial Agropyron cristatum: roles of soil nitrogen availability and biological soil space.

    PubMed

    Blank, Robert R; Morgan, Tye; Allen, Fay

    2015-01-01

    Worldwide, exotic invasive grasses have caused numerous ecosystem perturbations. Rangelands of the western USA have experienced increases in the size and frequency of wildfires largely due to invasion by the annual grass Bromus tectorum. Rehabilitation of invaded rangelands is difficult; but long-term success is predicated on establishing healthy and dense perennial grass communities, which suppress B. tectorum. This paper reports on two experiments to increase our understanding of soil factors involved in suppression. Water was not limiting in this study. Growth of B. tectorum in soil conditioned by and competing with the exotic perennial Agropyron cristatum was far less relative to its growth without competition. When competing with A. cristatum, replacing a portion of conditioned soil with fresh soil before sowing of B. tectorum did not significantly increase its growth. The ability of conditioned soil to suppress B. tectorum was lost when it was separated from growing A. cristatum. Soil that suppressed B. tectorum growth was characterized by low mineral nitrogen (N) availability and a high molar ratio of [Formula: see text] in the solution-phase pool of [Formula: see text] Moreover, resin availability of [Formula: see text] explained 66 % of the variability in B. tectorum above-ground mass, attesting to the importance of A. cristatum growth in reducing N availability to B. tectorum. Trials in which B. tectorum was suppressed the most were characterized by very high shoot/root mass ratios and roots that have less root hair growth relative to non-suppressed counterparts, suggesting co-opting of biological soil space by the perennial grass as another suppressive mechanism. Greater understanding of the role of biological soil space could be used to breed and select plant materials with traits that are more suppressive to invasive annual grasses. PMID:25603967

  11. Changes and recovery of soil bacterial communities influenced by biological soil disinfestation as compared with chloropicrin-treatment

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Soil bacterial composition, as influenced by biological soil disinfestation (BSD) associated with biomass incorporation was investigated to observe the effects of the treatment on the changes and recovery of the microbial community in a commercial greenhouse setting. Chloropicrin (CP) was also used for soil disinfestation to compare with the effects of BSD. The fusarium wilt disease incidence of spinach cultivated in the BSD- and CP-treated plots was reduced as compared with that in the untreated control plots, showing effectiveness of both methods to suppress the disease. The clone library analyses based on 16S rRNA gene sequences showed that members of the Firmicutes became dominant in the soil bacterial community after the BSD-treatment. Clone groups related to the species in the class Clostridia, such as Clostridium saccharobutylicum, Clostridium tetanomorphum, Clostridium cylindrosporum, Oxobacter pfennigii, etc., as well as Bacillus niacini in the class Bacilli were recognized as the most dominant members in the community. For the CP-treated soil, clones affiliated with the Bacilli related to acid-tolerant or thermophilic bacteria such as Tuberibacillus calidus, Sporolactobacillus laevolacticus, Pullulanibacillus naganoensis, Alicyclobacillus pomorum, etc. were detected as the major groups. The clone library analysis for the soil samples collected after spinach cultivation revealed that most of bacterial groups present in the original soil belonging to the phyla Proteobacteria, Acidobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Gemmatimonadetes, Planctomycetes, TM7, etc. were recovered in the BSD-treated soil. For the CP-treated soil, the recovery of the bacterial groups belonging to the above phyla was also noted, but some major clone groups recognized in the original soil did not recover fully. PMID:23958081

  12. Effects of Zero Tillage (No-Till) Conservation Agriculture on soil physical and biological properties and their contributions to sustainability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Landers, John N.; Rass, Gerard; de Freitas, Pedro L.; Basch, Gottlieb; González Sanchez, Emilio J.; Tabaglio, Vincenzo; Kassan, Amir; Derpsch, Rolf; Friedrich, Theodor; Giupponi, Luca

    2013-04-01

    Not cultivating soil, rotating crops over the years, and leaving crop residues on the surface in the practice of zero tillage/conservation agriculture (ZT/CA) reverses the historically accelerating degradation of soil organic matter (SOM) and soil structure, while increasing soil biological activity by a factor of 2 to 4. The results of this are many: (a) not cultivating reduces soil compaction, leaving old root holes to facilitate internal drainage, averts the pulverization of soil aggregates and formation of pans, reduces draft power for planting and gives shelter, winter food and nesting sites for fauna, (b) crop residues on the surface practically eliminate wind and water erosion, reduce soil moisture loss through the mulch effect, slow spring warm-up (possibly offset by a lower specific heat demand with less water retention in surface soil) and act as a reserve of organically-compounded nutrients (as they decompose to humus), (c) more SOM means higher available water and nutrient retention, higher biological activity year round (enhancing biological controls), higher levels of water-stable aggregates and a positive carbon sink in incremental SOM. The positive impacts for society are: (i) more and cheaper food, (ii) reduced flood and drought-induced famine risks, (iii) a positive carbon sink in SOM and possible reductions in NO2 emissions, (iv) cleaner water and greater aquifer recharge due to reduced runoff, (v) cleaner air through effective elimination of dust as a product of cultivation (vi) less water pollution and greater aquifer recharge from reduced rainfall runoff, (vii) farm diesel consumption halved, (viii) reduced demand for (tropical) de-forestation, by permitting crop expansion on steeper lands, (ix) increased wildlife populations (skylarks, plovers, partridge and peccaries) and (x) an improved conservation mindset in farmers. It is notable that, in spite of successful practitioners in all European countries, mainstream adoption is still to come: Europés ZT/CA area is 1.35 million hectares, while the world area is now some 125 million and growing at a rate of 7 million hectares per year. More scientific measurements of the benefits of this system are required, both to assist adoption and to trigger policy measures. In the EEC, CAP reform (greening) needs to consider making environmental services payments for these social benefits since a reduction in single farm payments is ineluctable and carbon footprint reduction is of the essence, in the face of constantly-rising fuel prices and the need to cut GHG emissions. Therefore, as the principal farm tool which offers an effective and immediate solution towards positive changes in soil quality, productivity and sustainability, ZT/CA adoption needs financial incentives, which have high economic and environmental returns to society.

  13. Impact of Long-Term Forest Enrichment Planting on the Biological Status of Soil in a Deforested Dipterocarp Forest in Perak, Malaysia

    PubMed Central

    Karam, D. S.; Arifin, A.; Radziah, O.; Shamshuddin, J.; Majid, N. M.; Hazandy, A. H.; Zahari, I.; Nor Halizah, A. H.; Rui, T. X.

    2012-01-01

    Deforestation leads to the deterioration of soil fertility which occurs rapidly under tropical climates. Forest rehabilitation is one of the approaches to restore soil fertility and increase the productivity of degraded areas. The objective of this study was to evaluate and compare soil biological properties under enrichment planting and secondary forests at Tapah Hill Forest Reserve, Perak after 42 years of planting. Both areas were excessively logged in the 1950s and left idle without any appropriate forest management until 1968 when rehabilitation program was initiated. Six subplots (20?m 20?m) were established within each enrichment planting (F1) and secondary forest (F2) plots, after which soil was sampled at depths of 015?cm (topsoil) and 1530?cm (subsoil). Results showed that total mean microbial enzymatic activity, as well as biomass C and N content, was significantly higher in F1 compared to F2. The results, despite sample variability, suggest that the rehabilitation program improves the soil biological activities where high rate of soil organic matter, organic C, N, suitable soil acidity range, and abundance of forest litter is believed to be the predisposing factor promoting higher population of microbial in F1 as compared to F2. In conclusion total microbial enzymatic activity, biomass C and biomass N evaluation were higher in enrichment planting plot compared to secondary forest. After 42 years of planting, rehabilitation or enrichment planting helps to restore the productivity of planted forest in terms of biological parameters. PMID:22606055

  14. Office of Biological Informatics and Outreach geospatial technology activities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    U.S. Geological Survey

    1998-01-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Office of Biological Informatics and Outreach (OBIO) in Reston, Virginia, and its Center for Biological Informatics (CBI) in Denver, Colorado, provide leadership in the development and use of geospatial technologies to advance the Nation's biological science activities.

  15. The soil moisture active passive experiments (SMAPEx): Towards soil moisture retrieval from the SMAP mission

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    NASA’s Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission, scheduled for launch in 2014, will carry the first combined L-band radar and radiometer system with the objective of mapping near surface soil moisture and freeze/thaw state globally at near-daily time step (2-3 days). SMAP will provide three soil ...

  16. BIOLOGICALLY-MEDIATED REMOVAL AND RECOVERY OF PLUTONIUM FROM CONTAMINATED SOIL

    SciTech Connect

    Jerger, Douglas E., Ph.D.,; Alperin, Edward S., QEP,; Holmes, Robert G., Ph.D.

    2003-02-27

    An innovative biological treatment technology successfully reduced plutonium concentration in soil from the Nevada Test Site (NTS) by over 80%. The final volume of plutonium-contaminated material that required disposal was reduced by over 90%. These results, achieved by an independent testing laboratory, confirm the results reported previously using NTS soil. In the previous test a 2530-gram sample of soil (350 to 400 pCi/g Pu) resulted in production of 131 grams of sludge (6,320 pCi/ g Pu) and a treated soil containing 72 pCi/g of Pu. The technology is based on the biological acidification of the soil and subsequent removal of the plutonium and other dissolved metals by a low volume, low energy water leaching process. The leachate is treated in a sulfate-reducing bioreactor to precipitate the metals as metal sulfides. Water may be recycled as process water or disposed since the treatment process removes over 99% of the dissolved metals including plutonium from the water. The plutonium is contained as a stable sludge that can be containerized for final disposal. Full-scale process costs have been developed which employ widely used treatment technologies such as aerated soil piles (biopiles) and bioreactors. The process costs were less than $10 per cubic foot, which were 40 to 50% lower than the baseline costs for the treatment of the NTS soil. The equipment and materials for water and sludge treatment and soil handling are commercially available.

  17. Isolation of maize soil and rhizosphere bacteria with antagonistic activity against Aspergillus flavus and Fusarium verticillioides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bacterial isolates from Mississippi maize field soil and maize rhizosphere samples were evaluated for their potential as biological control agents against Aspergillus flavus and Fusarium verticillioides. Isolated strains were screened for antagonistic activities in liquid co-culture against A. flav...

  18. Proteomic profiling: a novel approach to understanding the biological causes of soil water repellency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Keulen, Geertje; Doerr, Stefan H.; Urbanek, Emilia; Jones, Alun; Dudley, Ed

    2010-05-01

    Soil water repellency is a common phenomenon affecting a wide range of soil and land use types in different climates and is considered "the norm rather than the exception with its degree being variable". In all but the most severe cases, soil water repellency is transient with soils wetting eventually after prolonged wet weather and returning, when soil moisture content falls below the critical value. Despite the far-reaching environmental and (agro-)economic consequences, the fundamental biological causes of soil water repellency and its transient behaviour remain poorly understood. It is widely accepted that soil water repellency is caused by organic compounds coating soil particle surfaces. This reduces the particle's surface tension to values lower than that of water, which, as a net effect, inhibits the intrusion of liquid water into the soil pore space. Microbial as well as plant-derived substances have been implicated as sources of these organic materials, while some microbes have also been identified as degraders and/or emulsifiers of hydrophobic compounds. Common hydrophobic compounds and metabolites (e.g. alkanes and fatty acids) have been isolated from both wettable and water repellent soils in similar amounts indicating that their relevance is ambiguous. Even greater uncertainty exists about the role of soil micro-organisms in the development, reduction and temporal variability of soil water repellency. Importantly, certain filamentous fungi and actinomycete bacteria are able to render their hydrophilic cell surface hydrophobic, for example, during spore formation and hyphal foraging through air-containing pores in soil, by producing extracellular hydrophobic proteins. Beyond their own cell surface, the extracellular proteins can form highly recalcitrant hydrophobic surfaces on the hydrophilic side of amphiphilic, i.e. air-water or soil particle, interfaces. Remarkably, the proteins from fungi can also adhere to hydrophobic surfaces under drying conditions rendering them hydrophilic. The dynamics of production of these proteins and the formation of these hydrophobic protein surfaces in soils are not known. Other, yet unknown, proteins may also contribute to development, reduction and temporal variability of soil water repellency. Here we present the first steps of a new NERC funded project aimed at exploring the relationship between the presence and/or absence of (hydrophobic) protein and soil water repellency. It involves isolation and characterisation of hydrophobic protein and the temporal metaproteomic profiles in UK grassland and dune soils with varying degrees of water repellency. This contributes to identifying the proteomic dynamics, which may influence soil hydrology and structure, and ultimately the ability of soils to absorb water, support biomass growth, store carbon, and to capture and degrade pollutants.

  19. Accommodating Students with Disabilities in Soil Science Activities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Langley-Turnbaugh, S. J.; Murphy, Kate; Levin, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil science education is lacking in terms of accommodations for persons with disabilities. Individuals with disabilities are often excluded from soil science activities in school, and from soil science careers. GLOBE (Global Learning Observations to Benefit the Environment) is a worldwide, hands-on primary and secondary school-based education and…

  20. Variation in Soil Enzyme Activities in a Temperate Agroforestry Watershed

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Integration of agroforestry and grass buffers into row crop watersheds improves overall environmental quality, including soil quality. The objective of this study was to examine management and landscape effects on soil carbon, soil nitrogen, microbial diversity, enzyme activity, and DNA concentrati...

  1. Effects of organic dairy manure amendment on soil phosphatase activities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Organic dairy production is increasing in the U.S. due to concerns over environmental, human, and animal health. It is well known that the application of livestock manure to soil can influence enzyme activities involved in nutrient cycling and soil fertility, such as soil phosphatases; however, orga...

  2. Accommodating Students with Disabilities in Soil Science Activities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Langley-Turnbaugh, S. J.; Murphy, Kate; Levin, E.

    2004-01-01

    Soil science education is lacking in terms of accommodations for persons with disabilities. Individuals with disabilities are often excluded from soil science activities in school, and from soil science careers. GLOBE (Global Learning Observations to Benefit the Environment) is a worldwide, hands-on primary and secondary school-based education and

  3. Biological soil crusts from arctic environments: characterization of the prokaryotic community and exopolysaccharidic matrix analysis.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mugnai, Gianmarco; Ventura, Stefano; Mascalchi, Cristina; Rossi, Federico; Adessi, Alessandra; De Philippis, Roberto

    2015-04-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are highly specialized topsoil microbial communities widespread in many ecosystems, from deserts to polar regions. BSCs play an active role in promoting soil fertility and plant growth. In Arctic environments BSCs are involved in promoting primary succession after deglaciation, increasing moisture availability and nutrient immission at the topsoil. The organisms residing on BSCs produce extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) in response to the environmental characteristics, thus contributing to the increase of constraint tolerance. The aim of this study was to investigate the taxonomic diversity of microbial communities, together with the analysis of the chemical features of EPS, from BSC samples collected in several sites near Ny-Ǻlesund, Norway. The phylogenetic composition of the prokaryotic community was assessed through a metagenomic approach. Exopolysaccharidic fractions were quantified using ion-exchange chromatography to determine the monosaccharidic composition. Size exclusion chromatography was used to determine the distribution of the EPS fractions. Abundance of phototrophic microorganisms, which are known to contribute to EPS excretion, was also evaluated. Results underlined the complexity of the microbial communities, showing a high level of diversity within the BSC sampled analyzed. The analysis of the polysaccharide composition displayed a high number of constituent sugars; the matrix was found to be constituted by two main fractions, a higher molecular weight (2 10 exp(6) Da) and a lower molecular weight fraction (< 100 10 exp(3) Da). This study presents novel data concerning EPS of BSCs matrix in relationship with the microbial communities in cold environments.

  4. Lung biological activity of American attapulgite

    SciTech Connect

    Begin, R.; Masse, S.; Rola-Pleszczynski, M.; Geoffroy, M.; Martel, M.; Desmarais, Y.; Sebastien, P.

    1987-04-01

    Attapulgite is a fibrous mineral industrially consumed at the rate of over a million tons per year but the biological activity of the material is not fully known. To evaluate the in vivo toxicity of the fibrous materials, they exposed the tracheal lobe of 16 sheep to a single exposure of either 100 ml saline, 100 mg UICC asbestos fibers in 100 ml saline, 100 mg short asbestos fibers in 100 ml saline, or 100 mg attapulgite in 100 ml saline. The animals were studied by bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) at Days 2, 12, 24, 40, and 60 and by autopsy at Day 60. In the saline-exposed sheep, BAL and lung histology did not change. In the UICC asbestos-exposed animals, they reproduced the BAL changes previously reported. In the short asbestos-exposed sheep, there were no significant BAL changes. In the attapulgite sheep, they found significant and sustained increases in total BAL cells, macrophages, neutrophils, fibronectin, lactate dehydrogenase, ..beta..-glucuronidase, but BAL cellularity returned to control levels by Day 60 whereas in the UICC asbestos-exposed sheep, it remained significantly above control. Lung histology demonstrated the characteristic peribronchiolar fibrosing alveolitis in the UICC asbestos-exposed sheep, whereas macrophagic alveolitis with minimal airway distortion was seen in the short asbestos-exposed sheep, whereas macrophagic alveolitis with minimal airway distortion was seen in the short asbestos-exposed sheep and in all of the attapulgite-exposed sheep but three which had typical peribronchiolar alveolitis quite similar to that observed in UICC-exposed sheep, but of lower intensity.

  5. Biological activity of a leached chernozem contaminated with the products of combustion of petroleum gas and its restoration upon phytoremediation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kireeva, N. A.; Novoselova, E. I.; Shamaeva, A. A.; Grigoriadi, A. S.

    2009-04-01

    It is shown that contamination of leached chernozems by combustion products of petroleum gas favors changes in the biological activity of the soil: the number of hydrocarbon-oxidizing bacteria and micromycetes has increased, as well as the activity of catalase and lipase and phytotoxicity. Bromopsis inermis Leys used as a phytoameliorant has accelerated the destruction of hydrocarbons in the rhizosphere. The benzpyrene concentration in plants on contaminated soils considerably exceeds its background concentration.

  6. Succession of N cycling processes in biological soil crusts on a Central European inland dune.

    PubMed

    Brankatschk, Robert; Fischer, Thomas; Veste, Maik; Zeyer, Josef

    2013-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are microbial assemblages that occur worldwide and facilitate ecosystem development by nitrogen (N) and carbon accumulation. N turnover within BSC ecosystems has been intensively studied in the past; however, shifts in the N cycle during BSC development have not been previously investigated. Our aim was to characterise N cycle development first by the abundance of the corresponding functional genes (in brackets) and second by potential enzyme activities; we focussed on the four processes: N fixation (nifH), mineralisation as proteolysis and chitinolysis (chiA), nitrification (amoA) and denitrification (nosZ). We sampled from four phases of BSC development and from a reference located in the rooting zone of Corynephorus canescens, on an inland dune in Germany. BSC development was associated with increasing amounts of chlorophyll, organic carbon and N. Potential activities increased and were highest in developed BSCs. Similarly, the abundance of functional genes increased. We propose and discuss three stages of N process succession. First, the heterotrophic stage (mobile sand without BSCs) is dominated by mineralisation activity. Second, during the transition stage (initial BSCs), N accumulates, and potential nitrification and denitrification activity increases. Third, the developed stage (established BSCs and reference) is characterised by the dominance of nitrification. PMID:22816620

  7. Soil zymography - A novel technique for mapping enzyme activity in the rhizosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spohn, Marie

    2014-05-01

    The effect plant roots on microbial activity in soil at the millimeter scale is poorly understood. One reason for this is that spatially explicit methods for the study of microbial activity in soil are limited. Here we present a quantitative in situ technique for mapping the distribution of exoenzymes in soil along with some results about the effects of roots on exoenzyme activity in soil. In the first study we showed that both acid and alkaline phosphatase activity were up to 5.4-times larger in the rhizosphere of Lupinus albus than in the bulk soil. While acid phosphatase activity (produced by roots and microorganisms) was closely associated with roots, alkaline phosphatase activity (produced only by microorganisms) was more widely distributed, leading to a 2.5-times larger area of activity of alkaline than of acid phosphatase. These results indicate a spatial differentiation of different ecophysiological groups of organic phosphorus mineralizing organisms in the rhizosphere which might alleviate a potential competition for phosphorus between them. In a second study cellulase, chitinase and phosphatase activities were analyzed in the presence of living Lupinus polyphyllus roots and dead/dying roots (in the same soils 10, 20 and 30 days after cutting the L. polyphyllus shoots). The activity of all three enzymes was 9.0 to 13.9-times higher at the living roots compared to the bulk soil. Microhotspots of cellulase, chitinase and phosphatase activity in the soil were found up to 60 mm away from the living roots. 10 days after shoot cutting, the areas of high activities of cellulase and phosphatase activity were extend up to 55 mm away from the next root, while the extension of the area of chitinase activity did not change significantly. At the root, cellulase and chitinase activity increased first at the root tips after shoot cutting and showed maximal activity 20 days after shoot cutting. The number and activity of microhotspots of chitinase activity was maximal 10 days after shoot cutting and decreased thereafter. In conclusion, the study showed that fresh root detritus stimulates enzyme activities much stronger than living roots, probably because of the high pulse input of C and N from dying roots compared to slow continuous release of rhizodeposits. Taken together, soil zymography is a very promising novel technique to gain insights the effects of roots on the spatial and temporal dynamic of exoenzyme activity in soil. References Spohn, M., Carminati, A., Kuzyakov, Y. (2013). Zymography - A novel in situ method for mapping distribution of enzyme activity in soil. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 58, 275-280. Spohn, M., Kuzyakov, Y. (2013): Distribution of microbial- and root- derived phosphatase activities in the rhizosphere depending on P availability and C allocation - Coupling soil zymography with 14C imaging. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 67, 106-113. Spohn, M., Kuzyakov, Y. (accepted): Spatial and temporal dynamics of hotspots of enzyme activity as affected by living and dead roots - A soil zymography analysis. Plant and Soil

  8. Biological soil crusts exhibit a dynamic response to seasonal rain and release from grazing with implications for soil stability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jimenez, Aguilar A.; Huber-Sannwald, E.; Belnap, J.; Smart, D.R.; Arredondo, Moreno J.T.

    2009-01-01

    In Northern Mexico, long-term grazing has substantially degraded semiarid landscapes. In semiarid systems, ecological and hydrological processes are strongly coupled by patchy plant distribution and biological soil crust (BSC) cover in plant-free interspaces. In this study, we asked: 1) how responsive are BSC cover/composition to a drying/wetting cycle and two-year grazing removal, and 2) what are the implications for soil erosion? We characterized BSC morphotypes and their influence on soil stability under grazed/non-grazed conditions during a dry and wet season. Light- and dark-colored cyanobacteria were dominant at the plant tussock and community level. Cover changes in these two groups differed after a rainy season and in response to grazing removal. Lichens with continuous thalli were more vulnerable to grazing than those with semi-continuous/discontinuous thalli after the dry season. Microsites around tussocks facilitated BSC colonization compared to interspaces. Lichen and cyanobacteria morphotypes differentially enhanced resistance to soil erosion; consequently, surface soil stability depends on the spatial distribution of BSC morphotypes, suggesting soil stability may be as dynamic as changes in the type of BSC cover. Longer-term spatially detailed studies are necessary to elicit spatiotemporal dynamics of BSC communities and their functional role in biotically and abiotically variable environments. ?? 2009 Elsevier Ltd.

  9. Microbial communities and activities in alpine and subalpine soils.

    PubMed

    Margesin, Rosa; Jud, Melanie; Tscherko, Dagmar; Schinner, Franz

    2009-02-01

    Soil samples were collected along two slopes (south and north) at subalpine (1500-1900 m, under closed vegetation, up to the forest line) and alpine altitudes (2300-2530, under scattered vegetation, above the forest line) in the Grossglockner mountain area (Austrian central Alps). Soils were analyzed for a number of properties, including physical and chemical soil properties, microbial activity and microbial communities that were investigated using culture-dependent (viable heterotrophic bacteria) and culture-independent methods (phospholipid fatty acid analysis, FISH). Alpine soils were characterized by significantly (P<0.01) colder climate conditions, i.e. lower mean annual air and soil temperatures, more frost and ice days and higher precipitation, compared with subalpine soils. Microbial activity (soil dehydrogenase activity) decreased with altitude; however, dehydrogenase activity was better adapted to cold in alpine soils compared with subalpine soils, as shown by the lower apparent optimum temperature for activity (30 vs. 37 degrees C) and the significantly (P<0.01-0.001) higher relative activity in the low-temperature range. With increasing altitude, i.e. in alpine soils, a significant (P<0.05-0.01) increase in the relative amount of culturable psychrophilic heterotrophic bacteria, in the relative amount of the fungal population and in the relative amount of Gram-negative bacteria was found, which indicates shifts in microbial community composition with altitude. PMID:19049494

  10. Effect of anaerobic soil disinfestation and Brassica seed meal amendment on soil biology and system resistance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Brassica seed meal amendments and anaerobic soil disinfestation control a spectrum of soil-borne plant pathogens via a diversity of mechanisms. Transformations in microbial community structure and function in certain instances were determinants of disease control and enhanced plant performance. Fo...

  11. GIBBs: A new soil biology index to quantify beneficial bacteria in the soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Microbial diversity has been linked to soil resilience and health but few microbial indices explicitly link diversity to function. Many of the thousands of bacteria species present in soils enhance plant nutrition, confer stress tolerance, and promote plant growth and productivity through specific m...

  12. Community Level Physiological Profiles (CLPP), Characterization and Microbial Activity of Soil Amended with Dairy Sewage Sludge

    PubMed Central

    Fr?c, Magdalena; Oszust, Karolina; Lipiec, Jerzy

    2012-01-01

    The aim of the present work was to assess the influence of organic amendment applications compared to mineral fertilization on soil microbial activity and functional diversity. The field experiment was set up on a soil classified as an Eutric Cambisol developed from loess (South-East Poland). Two doses of both dairy sewage sludge (20 Mgha?1 and 26 Mgha?1) and of mineral fertilizers containing the same amount of nutrients were applied. The same soil without any amendment was used as a control. The soil under undisturbed native vegetation was also included in the study as a representative background sample. The functional diversity (catabolic potential) was assessed using such indices as Average Well Color Development (AWCD), Richness (R) and ShannonWeaver index (H). These indices were calculated, following the community level physiological profiling (CLPP) using Biolog Eco Plates. Soil dehydrogenase and respiratory activity were also evaluated. The indices were sensitive enough to reveal changes in community level physiological profiles due to treatment effects. It was shown that dairy sewage amended soil was characterized by greater AWCD, R, H and dehydrogenase and respiratory activity as compared to control or mineral fertilized soil. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) and principal component analysis (PCA) were used to depict the differences of the soil bacterial functional diversity between the treatments. PMID:22737006

  13. Effect of leather industry effluents on soil microbial and protease activity.

    PubMed

    Pradeep, M Reddi; Narasimha, G

    2012-01-01

    Release of leather industry effluents into the agricultural fields causes indicative changes in nutrient cycling and organic matter processing. In the present study, leather industry effluent discharged soil (test) and undischarged soil(control) were collected from the surrounding areas of industry. The physico-chemical, biological properties and soil protease activity were examined. The study reflected the average mean value of pH, electrical conductivity and water holding capacity of the test soil was found to be 7.94, 0.89 microMhos cm(-1) and 0.51 ml g(-1), respectively. In chemical parameters, organic matter, total nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium has the mean of 6.73%, 0.23 g kg(-1), 4.28 mg g(-1) and 28 microg g(-1), respectively. In all the respects, the test soil showed higher values than the control. The soil protease enzyme activity was determined by using substrate casein and the activity was found to be higher (180 microg TE g(-1) 24 hr(-1)) in test soil than the control soil (63 microg TE g(-1) 24 hr(-1)). PMID:23033641

  14. Biological Remediation of Soil: An Overview of Global Market and Available Technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, Ajay; Kuhad, Ramesh C.; Ward, Owen P.

    Due to a wide range of industrial and agricultural activities, a high number of chemical contaminants is released into the environment, causing a significant concern regarding potential toxicity, carcinogenicity, and potential for bioaccumulation in living systems of various chemicals in soil. Although microbial activity in soil accounts for most of the degradation of organic contaminants, chemical and physical mechanisms can also provide significant transformation pathways for these compounds. The specific remediation processes that have been applied to clean up contaminated sites include natural attenuation, landfarming, biopiling or composting, contained slurry bioreactor, bioventing, soil vapor extraction, thermal desorption, incineration, soil washing and land filling (USEPA 2004).

  15. Analytical and statistical approaches to validate biological treatment of petroleum hydrocarbons in soil

    SciTech Connect

    Graves, D.; Chase, L.; Ray, J.

    1995-09-01

    A site in southern California, containing 50,000 cubic yards of petroleum contaminated soil, was remediated using land treatment. By using a combination of soil screening and land treatment, the total petroleum hydrocarbon content was reduced to less than the clean-up standard of 1,000 mg/kg. Initial contaminant concentrations ranged between 4,000 and 5,000 mg/kg after screening to remove large globules of tar and pieces of asphalt. Biological treatment time was less than eight months. Simple parametric and nonparametric statistical methods were applied to the results obtained from soil testing. Multiple analytical methods were used to determine the type of residual hydrocarbon and the relative environmental risk associated with the residual contamination. This combination of physical segregation. land treatment, and statistical and analytical methods resulted in soil remediation and permission to use the soil on site without restriction.

  16. Microbial biomass, activity, and community structure in subsurface soils

    SciTech Connect

    Federle, T.W.; Dobbins, D.C.; Thornton-Manning, J.R.; Jones, D.D.

    1986-05-01

    Microbial biomass, community structure and activity were determined in the subsurface horizons of four contrasting soil types common to Alabama. Biomass and community structure were determined by analyzing the fatty acids of the extractable phospholipids. Activity was estimated by measuring the rate of enzymatic hydrolysis of fluorescein diacetate (FDA). In all four soils, biomass and activity declined with increasing depth; however, the magnitude and pattern of this decline varied as a function of soil type. Biomass concentrations in the lower Ap horizon ranged from 8.2 to 18.0 nmoles phospholipid/g dry wt soil. In the deepest subsoil horizons, the range was 0.0085 to 0.059 nmoles phospholipid/g dry wt soil. The rate of FDA hydrolysis was highly correlated with biomass (r = 0.90). Polyenoic fatty acids, which are present only in eukaryotic microorganisms, were found in all horizons; however, their relative abundance differed as a function of soil type. Stepwise regression analysis revealed that soil characteristics could explain 89 and 82% of the variation in biomass and activity, respectively. The results indicated that the vertical distribution of microorganisms in a soil profile differs greatly as a function of soil type. Hence, soil type may be an important determinant as to whether potential ground-water pollutants are biodegraded as they pass through the unsaturated zone of a soil profile.

  17. The ice nucleation activity of biological aerosols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grothe, H.; Pummer, B.; Bauer, H.; Bernardi, J.

    2012-04-01

    Primary Biological Aerosol Particles (PBAPs), including bacteria, spores and pollen may be important for several atmospheric processes. Particularly, the ice nucleation caused by PBAPs is a topic of growing interest, since their impact on ice cloud formation and thus on radiative forcing, an important parameter in global climate is not yet fully understood. In laboratory model studies we investigated the ice nucleation activity of selected PBAPs. We studied the immersion mode freezing using water-oil emulsion, which we observed by optical microscopy. We particularly focused on pollen. We show that pollen of different species strongly differ in their ice nucleation behavior. The average freezing temperatures in laboratory experiments range from 240 K to 255 K. As the most efficient nuclei (silver birch, Scots pine and common juniper pollen) have a distribution area up to the Northern timberline, their ice nucleation activity might be a cryoprotective mechanism. For comparison the ice nucleation activity of Snomax, fungal spores, and mushrooms will be discussed as well. In the past, pollen have been rejected as important atmospheric IN, as they are not as abundant in the atmosphere as bacteria or mineral dust and are too heavy to reach higher altitudes. However, in our experiments (Pummer et al. 2011) it turned out that water, which had been in contact with pollen and then been separated from the bodies, nucleates as good as the pollen grains themselves. So the ice nuclei have to be easily-suspendable macromolecules (100-300 kDa) located on the pollen. Once extracted, they can be distributed further through the atmosphere than the heavy pollen grains and so augment the impact of pollen on ice cloud formation even in the upper troposphere. It is widely known, that material from the pollen, like allergens and sugars, can indeed leave the pollen body and be distributed independently. The most probable mechanism is the pollen grain bursting by rain, which releases material, like allergens (Schäppi et al., 1999). As a consequence allergenic material was found in aerosol particles smaller than 5 µm, which contained no pollen or bigger fragments (Solomon et al., 1983). The release of material by bursting of wet pollen has been observed by electron microscopy (Swoboda et al., 2001). Not only allergens, but also sugars originating from pollen can be detected in the atmosphere (Yttri et al., 2007). These authors see pollen rupture and wood burning as their main sources in the atmosphere. The contrast between the hydrophilic properties of many of the surface components and the relative hydrophobia of the sporopollenin boosts the suspension of surface components in water droplets. According to that we conclude that the impact of pollen on the global atmosphere might have been underestimated. Additionally, our experiments lead to the conclusion that pollen ice nuclei, in contrast to bacterial and fungal ice nucleating proteins, are non-proteinaceous compounds.

  18. Multifunctional and biologically active matrices from multicomponent polymeric solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiick, Kristi L. (Inventor); Yamaguchi, Nori (Inventor); Rabolt, John (Inventor); Casper, Cheryl (Inventor)

    2012-01-01

    A functionalized electrospun matrix for the controlled-release of biologically active agents, such as growth factors, is presented. The functionalized matrix comprises a matrix polymer, a compatibilizing polymer and a biomolecule or other small functioning molecule. In certain aspects the electrospun polymer fibers comprise at least one biologically active molecule functionalized with low molecular weight heparin.

  19. Synthesis, reactivity and biological activity of 5-alkoxymethyluracil analogues

    PubMed Central

    Brulikova, Lucie

    2011-01-01

    Summary This review article summarizes the results of a long-term investigation of 5-alkoxymethyluracil analogues and is aimed, in particular, at methods of syntheses. Most of the presented compounds were synthesized in order to evaluate their biological activity, therefore, a brief survey of biological activity, especially antiviral, cytotoxic and antibacterial, is also reported. PMID:21804865

  20. Synthetic derivatives of aromatic abietane diterpenoids and their biological activities.

    PubMed

    Gonzlez, Miguel A

    2014-11-24

    Naturally occurring aromatic abietane diterpenoids (dehydroabietanes) exhibit a wide range of biological activities. A number of synthetic studies aimed at modifying the abietane skeleton in order to obtain new potential chemotherapeutic agents have been reported. In this study, the biological activities of synthetic derivatives of aromatic abietane diterpenoids are reviewed. PMID:25440884

  1. Seasonal Variation in Soil Microbial Biomass, Bacterial Community Composition and Extracellular Enzyme Activity in Relation to Soil Respiration in a Northern Great Plains Grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilton, E.; Flanagan, L. B.

    2014-12-01

    Soil respiration rate is affected by seasonal changes in temperature and moisture, but is this a direct effect on soil metabolism or an indirect effect caused by changes in microbial biomass, bacterial community composition and substrate availability? In order to address this question, we compared continuous measurements of soil and plant CO2 exchange made with an automatic chamber system to analyses conducted on replicate soil samples collected on four dates during June-August. Microbial biomass was estimated from substrate-induced respiration rate, bacterial community composition was determined by 16S rRNA amplicon pyrosequencing, and β-1,4-N-acetylglucosaminidase (NAGase) and phenol oxidase enzyme activities were assayed fluorometrically or by absorbance measurements, respectively. Soil microbial biomass declined from June to August in strong correlation with a progressive decline in soil moisture during this time period. Soil bacterial species richness and alpha diversity showed no significant seasonal change. However, bacterial community composition showed a progressive shift over time as measured by Bray-Curtis dissimilarity. In particular, the change in community composition was associated with increasing relative abundance in the alpha and delta classes, and declining abundance of the beta and gamma classes of the Proteobacteria phylum during June-August. NAGase showed a progressive seasonal decline in potential activity that was correlated with microbial biomass and seasonal changes in soil moisture. In contrast, phenol oxidase showed highest potential activity in mid-July near the time of peak soil respiration and ecosystem photosynthesis, which may represent a time of high input of carbon exudates into the soil from plant roots. This input of exudates may stimulate the activity of phenol oxidase, a lignolytic enzyme involved in the breakdown of soil organic matter. These analyses indicated that seasonal change in soil respiration is a complex interaction between temporal changes in soil environmental factors and biological changes in the plant and microbial community that affect soil respiratory metabolism.

  2. Near infrared spectra are more sensitive to land use changes than physical, chemical and biological soil properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guerrero, C.; Zornoza, R.; Mataix-Solera, J.; Mataix-Beneyto, J.; Scow, K.

    2009-04-01

    We studied the sensibility of the near infrared spectra (NIR) of soils to the changes caused by land use, and we compared with the sensibility of different sets of physical, chemical and biological soil properties. For this purpose, we selected three land uses, constituted by forest, almond trees orchards, and orchards abandoned between 10 and 15 years previously to sampling. Sampling was carried out in four different locations from the province of Alicante (SE Spain). We used discriminant analysis (DA) using different sets of soil properties. The different sets tested in this study using DA were: (1) physical and chemical properties (organic carbon, total nitrogen, available phosphorus, pH, electrical conductivity, cation exchange capacity, aggregate stability, water holding capacity, and available Ca, Mg, K and Na), (2) biochemical properties (microbial biomass carbon, basal respiration and urease, phosphatase and β-glucosidase activities), (3) phospholipids fatty acids (PLFAs), (4) physical, chemical and biochemical properties (all properties of the previous sets), and (5) the NIR spectra of soils (scores of the principal components). In general, all sets of properties were sensible to land use. This was observed in the DAs by the separation (more or less clear) of samples in groups defined by land use (irrespective of site). The worst results were obtained using soil physical and chemical properties. The combination of physical, chemical and biological properties enhanced the separation of samples in groups, indicating higher sensibility. It is accepted than combination of properties of different nature is more effective to evaluate the soil quality. The microbial community structure (PLFAs) was highly sensible to the land use, grouping correctly the 100% of the samples according with the land use. The NIR spectra were also sensitive to land use. The scores of the first 5 components, which explained 99.97% of the variance, grouped correctly the 85% of the soil samples by land use, but were unable to group correctly the 100% of the samples. Surprisingly, when the scarce variance presents in components 5 to 40 was also used, the 100% of the samples were grouped by land use, as it was observed with PLFAs. But PLFAs analysis is expensive and time-consuming (some weeks). In contrast, only some minutes are needed for the obtainment of the NIR spectra. Additionally, no chemicals are need, decreasing the costs. The NIR spectrum of a soil contains relevant information about physical, chemical and biochemical properties. NIR spectrum could be considered as an integrated vision of soil quality, and as consequence offers an integrated vision of perturbations. Thus, NIR spectroscopy could be used as tool to monitoring soil quality in large areas. Acknowledgements: Authors acknowledge to "Bancaja-UMH" for the financial support of the project "NIRPRO"

  3. Systematically biological prioritizing remediation sites based on datasets of biological investigations and heavy metals in soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Wei-Chih; Lin, Yu-Pin; Anthony, Johnathen

    2015-04-01

    Heavy metal pollution has adverse effects on not only the focal invertebrate species of this study, such as reduction in pupa weight and increased larval mortality, but also on the higher trophic level organisms which feed on them, either directly or indirectly, through the process of biomagnification. Despite this, few studies regarding remediation prioritization take species distribution or biological conservation priorities into consideration. This study develops a novel approach for delineating sites which are both contaminated by any of 5 readily bioaccumulated heavy metal soil contaminants and are of high ecological importance for the highly mobile, low trophic level focal species. The conservation priority of each site was based on the projected distributions of 6 moth species simulated via the presence-only maximum entropy species distribution model followed by the subsequent application of a systematic conservation tool. In order to increase the number of available samples, we also integrated crowd-sourced data with professionally-collected data via a novel optimization procedure based on a simulated annealing algorithm. This integration procedure was important since while crowd-sourced data can drastically increase the number of data samples available to ecologists, still the quality or reliability of crowd-sourced data can be called into question, adding yet another source of uncertainty in projecting species distributions. The optimization method screens crowd-sourced data in terms of the environmental variables which correspond to professionally-collected data. The sample distribution data was derived from two different sources, including the EnjoyMoths project in Taiwan (crowd-sourced data) and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) ?eld data (professional data). The distributions of heavy metal concentrations were generated via 1000 iterations of a geostatistical co-simulation approach. The uncertainties in distributions of the heavy metals were then quantified based on the overall consistency between realizations. Finally, Information-Gap Decision Theory (IGDT) was applied to rank the remediation priorities of contaminated sites in terms of both spatial consensus of multiple heavy metal realizations and the priority of specific conservation areas. Our results show that the crowd-sourced optimization algorithm developed in this study is effective at selecting suitable data from crowd-sourced data. By using this technique the available sample data increased to a total number of 96, 162, 72, 62, 69 and 62 or, that is, 2.6, 1.6, 2.5, 1.6, 1.2 and 1.8 times that originally available through the GBIF professionally-assembled database. Additionally, for all species considered the performance of models, in terms of test-AUC values, based on the combination of both data sources exceeded those models which were based on a single data source. Furthermore, the additional optimization-selected data lowered the overall variability, and therefore uncertainty, of model outputs. Based on the projected species distributions, our results revealed that around 30% of high species hotspot areas were also identified as contaminated. The decision-making tool, IGDT, successfully yielded remediation plans in terms of specific ecological value requirements, false positive tolerance rates of contaminated areas, and expected decision robustness. The proposed approach can be applied both to identify high conservation priority sites contaminated by heavy metals, based on the combination of screened crowd-sourced and professionally-collected data, and in making robust remediation decisions.

  4. Effects of biochar amendments on soil microbial biomass and activity.

    PubMed

    Zhang, H; Voroney, R P; Price, G W

    2014-11-01

    Environmental benefits reported in the literature of using biochar as a soil amendment are generally increased microbial activity and reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This study determined the effects of amendment with biomass feedstocks (spent coffee grounds, wood pellets, and horse bedding compost) and that of biochars (700°C) produced from these feedstocks on soil microbial biomass (C and N) and activity. Soils were amended with these substrates at 0.75% by weight and incubated for up to 175 d under laboratory conditions. Biochar residual effects on soil microbial activity were also studied by amending these soils with either ammonium nitrate (NHNO, 35 mg N kg) or with glucose (864 mg C kg) plus NHNO. Soil microbial biomass C and N, net N mineralization, and CO, NO, and CH emissions were measured. Amendment with biomass feedstocks significantly increased soil microbial biomass and activity, whereas amendment with the biochars had no significant effect. Also, biochar amendment had no significant effect on either net N mineralization or NO and CH emissions from soil. These results indicate that production of biochars at this high temperature eliminated potential substrates. Microbial biomass C in biochar-amended and unamended soils was not significantly different following additions of NHNO or glucose plus NHNO, suggesting that microbial access to otherwise labile C and N was not affected. This study shows that biochars produced at 700°C, regardless of feedstock source, do not enhance soil microbial biomass or activity. PMID:25602227

  5. Active manipulation of native soil microbial community structure and function to suppress soilborne diseases

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The reality of naturally occurring biologically-induced disease suppressive soils suggests opportunity for managing resident soil microbial communities as a disease control method. Disease suppressive soils have yielded a significant body of knowledge concerning operative mechanisms leading to t...

  6. The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) Applications Activity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, Molly E.; Moran, Susan; Escobar, Vanessa; Entekhabi, Dara; O'Neill, Peggy; Njoku, Eni

    2011-01-01

    The Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission is one of the first-tier satellite missions recommended by the U.S. National Research Council Committee on Earth Science and Applications from Space. The SMAP mission 1 is under development by NASA and is scheduled for launch late in 2014. The SMAP measurements will allow global and high-resolution mapping of soil moisture and its freeze/thaw state at resolutions from 3-40 km. These measurements will have high value for a wide range of environmental applications that underpin many weather-related decisions including drought and flood guidance, agricultural productivity estimation, weather forecasting, climate predictions, and human health risk. In 2007, NASA was tasked by The National Academies to ensure that emerging scientific knowledge is actively applied to obtain societal benefits by broadening community participation and improving means for use of information. SMAP is one of the first missions to come out of this new charge, and its Applications Plan forms the basis for ensuring its commitment to its users. The purpose of this paper is to outline the methods and approaches of the SMAP applications activity, which is designed to increase and sustain the interaction between users and scientists involved in mission development.

  7. Effects of biological soil crusts on surface roughness and implications for runoff and erosion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodrguez-Caballero, Emilio; Cantn, Yolanda; Chamizo, Sonia; Afana, Ashraf; Sol-Benet, Albert

    2012-04-01

    Soil surface roughness has a strong influence on runoff and erosion, affecting surface storage capacity, water flow routing and velocity, and modifying runoff rates. It also reduces soil detachment by raindrops and the shear effect of water flow on the soil surface. In arid and semiarid ecosystems, biological soil crusts (BSCs) commonly appear in clearings between plants. Depending on the dominant component in the BSC community, the roughness of the soil surface may vary considerably, changing the hydrologic and erosive response of the soil. The aim of this study is to determine the effect of physical and biological crusts on soil surface roughness and their influence on runoff and erosion. For this purpose, we set up open plots containing different BSC types and treatments and recorded runoff and total erosion from all the events for 18 months. Micro-topographic indexes were calculated from high-resolution digital surface models of the plots built from terrestrial laser scanner height data. After comparing different spatial resolutions and indexes, we concluded that only the local Random Roughness index in a 40-mm moving window provided a precise estimation of the roughness induced by BSCs, though it did not have a direct effect on runoff response. The best relationship between microtopography and runoff on biologically crusted soils was found for surface storage capacity, which appears as a powerful predictor of the runoff coefficient on long temporal scales. Sediment yield was not well predicted by any of the micro-topographic indexes studied. The only index that was significantly related to sediment yield was the local Random Roughness in a 40 mm moving window, but even this explained only a third of the erosion variance.

  8. Milk inhibits the biological activity of ricin

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ricin is a highly toxic protein produced by the castor plant Ricinus communis. The toxin is relatively easy to isolate and can be used as a biological weapon. There is great interest in identifying effective inhibitors for ricin. In this study, we demonstrated by three independent assays that compon...

  9. Regulation of assimilatory nitrate reductase activity in soil by microbial assimilation of ammonium.

    PubMed Central

    McCarty, G W; Bremner, J M

    1992-01-01

    It is well established that assimilatory nitrate reductase (ANR) activity in soil is inhibited by ammonium (NH4+). To elucidate the mechanism of this inhibition, we studied the effect of L-methionine sulfoximine (MSX), an inhibitor of NH4+ assimilation by microorganisms, on assimilatory reduction of nitrate (NO3-) in aerated soil slurries treated with NH4+. We found that NH4+ strongly inhibited ANR activity in these slurries and that MSX eliminated this inhibition. We also found that MSX induced dissimilatory reduction of NO3- to NH4+ in soil and that the NH4+ thus formed had no effect on the rate of NO-3 reduction. We concluded from these observations that the inhibition of ANR activity by NH4+ is due not to NH4+ per se but to products formed by microbial assimilation of NH4+. This conclusion was supported by a study of the effects of early products of NH4+ assimilation (L amino acids) on ANR activity in soil, because this study showed that the biologically active, L isomers of glutamine and asparagine strongly inhibited ANR activity, whereas the D isomers of these amino acids had little effect on ANR activity. Evidence that ANR activity is regulated by the glutamine formed by NH4+ assimilation was provided by studies showing that inhibitors of glutamine metabolism (azaserine, albizziin, and aminooxyacetate) inhibited ANR activity in soil treated with NO3- but did not do so in the presence of MSX. PMID:11607250

  10. Cyclobutane-Containing Alkaloids: Origin, Synthesis, and Biological Activities

    PubMed Central

    Sergeiko, Anastasia; Poroikov, Vladimir V; Hanu, Lumir O; Dembitsky, Valery M

    2008-01-01

    Present review describes research on novel natural cyclobutane-containing alkaloids isolated from terrestrial and marine species. More than 60 biological active compounds have been confirmed to have antimicrobial, antibacterial, antitumor, and other activities. The structures, synthesis, origins, and biological activities of a selection of cyclobutane-containing alkaloids are reviewed. With the computer program PASS some additional biological activities are also predicted, which point toward new possible applications of these compounds. This review emphasizes the role of cyclobutane-containing alkaloids as an important source of leads for drug discovery. PMID:19696873

  11. Biological and chemical interactions of pesticides with soil organic matter.

    PubMed

    Bollag, J M; Myers, C J; Minard, R D

    1992-08-12

    There is little doubt that organic matter plays a major role in the binding of pesticides in soil, and that this phenomenon is usually the most important cause for interaction of pesticides in the soil environment. Fulvic or humic acids are the chemicals most commonly involved in the binding interactions. Binding can occur with the original pesticide or a transformation product, the reaction being caused by abiotic agents or biotic agents (microbial or plant enzymes). The reactions or processes involved appear to be the same as those responsible for the formation of humic substances, i.e. for the humification process. Binding of pesticides to organic matter can occur by sorption (Van der Waal's forces, hydrogen bonding, hydrophobic bonding), electrostatic interactions (charge transfer, ion exchange or ligand exchange), covalent bonding or combinations of these reactions. Our investigation focused primarily on the binding of substituted phenols and aromatic amines to humus monomers and humic substances. In model reactions, we demonstrated the formation of covalent linkages between pesticides and humus constituents and fulvic or humic acids in the presence of phenol oxidases or clay minerals. With chlorinated phenols and carboxylic acids, it was possible to isolate and identify cross-coupling products and to elucidate the site and type of binding. The binding of chlorinated phenols to humic substances was determined by using 14C-labelled chemicals and by measuring the uptake of radioactivity by the humic material. These experiments provide a base for explaining the formation of bound residues in certain cases and for assuming the toxic potential of the immobilized pollutants. PMID:1439732

  12. Molecular, chemical and biological screening of soil actinomycete isolates in seeking bioactive peptide metabolites

    PubMed Central

    Imanparast, Somaye; Mohammadipanah, Fatemeh

    2015-01-01

    Background and Objective: Due to the evolution of multidrug-resistant strains, screening of natural resources, especially actinomycetes, for new therapeutic agents discovery has become the interests of researchers. In this study, molecular, chemical and biological screening of soil actinomycetes was carried out in order to search for peptide-producing actinomycetes. Materials and Methods: 60 actinomycetes were isolated from soils of Iran. The isolates were subjected to molecular screening for detection NRPS (non-ribosomal peptide synthetases) gene. Phylogenic identification of NRPS containing isolates was performed. Chemical screening of the crude extracts was performed using chlorine o-dianisidine as peptide detector reagent and bioactivity of peptide producing strains was determined by antimicrobial bioassay. High pressure liquid chromatography- mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS) with UV-visible spectroscopy was performed for detection of the metabolite diversity in selected strain. Results: Amplified NRPS adenylation gene (700 bp) was detected among 30 strains. Phylogenic identification of these isolates showed presence of rare actinomycetes genera among the isolates and 10 out of 30 strains were subjected to chemical screening. Nocardia sp. UTMC 751 showed antimicrobial activity against bacterial and fungal test pathogens. HPLC-MS and UV-visible spectroscopy results from the crude extract showed that this strain has probably the ability to produce new metabolites. Conclusion: By application of a combined approach, including molecular, chemical and bioactivity analysis, a promising strain of Nocardia sp. UTMC 751 was obtained. This strain had significant activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Strain Nocardia sp. UTMC 751 produce five unknown and most probably new metabolites with molecular weights of 274.2, 390.3, 415.3, 598.4 and 772.5. This strain had showed 99% similarity to Nocardia ignorata DSM 44496 T. PMID:26644870

  13. Effect of long-term industrial waste effluent pollution on soil enzyme activities and bacterial community composition.

    PubMed

    Subrahmanyam, Gangavarapu; Shen, Ju-Pei; Liu, Yu-Rong; Archana, Gattupalli; Zhang, Li-Mei

    2016-02-01

    Although numerous studies have addressed the influence of exogenous pollutants on microorganisms, the effect of long-term industrial waste effluent (IWE) pollution on the activity and diversity of soil bacteria was still unclear. Three soil samples characterized as uncontaminated (R1), moderately contaminated (R2), and highly contaminated (R3) receiving mixed organic and heavy metal pollutants for more than 20 years through IWE were collected along the Mahi River basin, Gujarat, western India. Basal soil respiration and in situ enzyme activities indicated an apparent deleterious effect of IWE on microbial activity and soil function. Community composition profiling of soil bacteria using 16S rRNA gene amplification and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) method indicated an apparent bacterial community shift in the IWE-affected soils. Cloning and sequencing of DGGE bands revealed that the dominated bacterial phyla in polluted soil were affiliated with Firmicutes, Acidobacteria, and Actinobacteria, indicating that these bacterial phyla may have a high tolerance to pollutants. We suggested that specific bacterial phyla along with soil enzyme activities could be used as relevant biological indicators for long-term pollution assessment on soil quality. Graphical Abstract Bacterial community profiling and soil enzyme activities in long-term industrial waste effluent polluted soils. PMID:26803661

  14. Influence of metal oxide particles on soil enzyme activity and bioaccumulation of two plants.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sunghyun; Sin, Hyunjoo; Lee, Sooyeon; Lee, Insook

    2013-09-28

    Particle size and metal species are important to both soil microbial toxicity and phytotoxicity in the soil ecosystem. The effects of CuO and ZnO nanoparticles (NPs) and microparticles (MPs) on soil microbial toxicity, phytotoxicity, and bioaccumulation in two crops (Cucumis sativus and Zea mays) were estimated in a soil microcosm. In the microcosm system, soil was artificially contaminated with 1,000 mg/kg CuO and ZnO NPs and MPs. After 15 days, we compared the microbial toxicity and phytotoxicity by particle size. In addition, C. sativus and Z. mays were cultivated in soils treated with CuO NPs and ZnO NPs, after which the treatment effects on bioaccumulation were evaluated. NPs were more toxic than MPs to microbes and plants in the soil ecosystem. We found that the soil enzyme activity and plant biomass were inhibited to the greatest extent by CuO NPs. However, in a Biolog test, substrate utilization patterns were more dependent upon metal type than particle size. Another finding indicated that the metal NP uptake amounts of plants depend on the plant species. In the comparison between C. sativus and Z. mays, the accumulation of Cu and Zn by C. sativus was noticeably higher. These findings show that metal oxide NPs may negatively impact soil bacteria and plants. In addition, the accumulation patterns of NPs depend on the plant species. PMID:23751560

  15. Modelling and interpreting biologically crusted dryland soil sub-surface structure using automated micropenetrometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoon, Stephen R.; Felde, Vincent J. M. N. L.; Drahorad, Sylvie L.; Felix-Henningsen, Peter

    2015-04-01

    Soil penetrometers are used routinely to determine the shear strength of soils and deformable sediments both at the surface and throughout a depth profile in disciplines as diverse as soil science, agriculture, geoengineering and alpine avalanche-safety (e.g. Grunwald et al. 2001, Van Herwijnen et al. 2009). Generically, penetrometers comprise two principal components: An advancing probe, and a transducer; the latter to measure the pressure or force required to cause the probe to penetrate or advance through the soil or sediment. The force transducer employed to determine the pressure can range, for example, from a simple mechanical spring gauge to an automatically data-logged electronic transducer. Automated computer control of the penetrometer step size and probe advance rate enables precise measurements to be made down to a resolution of 10's of microns, (e.g. the automated electronic micropenetrometer (EMP) described by Drahorad 2012). Here we discuss the determination, modelling and interpretation of biologically crusted dryland soil sub-surface structures using automated micropenetrometry. We outline a model enabling the interpretation of depth dependent penetration resistance (PR) profiles and their spatial differentials using the model equations, σ {}(z) ={}σ c0{}+Σ 1n[σ n{}(z){}+anz + bnz2] and dσ /dz = Σ 1n[dσ n(z) /dz{} {}+{}Frn(z)] where σ c0 and σ n are the plastic deformation stresses for the surface and nth soil structure (e.g. soil crust, layer, horizon or void) respectively, and Frn(z)dz is the frictional work done per unit volume by sliding the penetrometer rod an incremental distance, dz, through the nth layer. Both σ n(z) and Frn(z) are related to soil structure. They determine the form of σ {}(z){} measured by the EMP transducer. The model enables pores (regions of zero deformation stress) to be distinguished from changes in layer structure or probe friction. We have applied this method to both artificial calibration soils in the laboratory, and in-situ field studies. In particular, we discuss the nature and detection of surface and buried (fossil) subsurface Biological Soil Crusts (BSCs), voids, macroscopic particles and compositional layers. The strength of surface BSCs and the occurrence of buried BSCs and layers has been detected at sub millimetre scales to depths of 40mm. Our measurements and field observations of PR show the importance of morphological layering to overall BSC functions (Felde et al. 2015). We also discuss the effect of penetrometer shaft and probe-tip profiles upon the theoretical and experimental curves, EMP resolution and reproducibility, demonstrating how the model enables voids, buried biological soil crusts, exotic particles, soil horizons and layers to be distinguished one from another. This represents a potentially important contribution to advancing understanding of the relationship between BSCs and dryland soil structure. References: Drahorad SL, Felix-Henningsen P. (2012) An electronic micropenetrometer (EMP) for field measurements of biological soil crust stability, J. Plant Nutr. Soil Sci., 175, 519-520 Felde V.J.M.N.L., Drahorad S.L., Felix-Henningsen P., Hoon S.R. (2015) Ongoing oversanding induces biological soil crust layering - a new approach for BSC structure elucidation determined from high resolution penetration resistance data (submitted) Grunwald, S., Rooney D.J., McSweeney K., Lowery B. (2001) Development of pedotransfer functions for a profile cone penetrometer, Geoderma, 100, 25-47 Van Herwijnen A., Bellaire S., Schweizer J. (2009) Comparison of micro-structural snowpack parameters derived from penetration resistance measurements with fracture character observations from compression tests, Cold Regions Sci. {& Technol.}, 59, 193-201

  16. A new environment for aerobic anoxygenic phototrophic bacteria: biological soil crusts.

    PubMed

    Csotonyi, Julius T; Swiderski, Jolantha; Stackebrandt, Erko; Yurkov, Vladimir

    2010-10-01

    Phototrophic microorganisms are critical to the carbon cycling and productivity of biological soil crusts, which enhance water content, nutrient relations and mechanical stability of arid soils. Only oxygen-producing phototrophs, including cyanobacteria and algae, are known from soil crusts, but Earth's second major branch of photosynthetic organisms, the evolutionarily earlier anoxygenic phototrophs, is unreported. We announce the discovery of aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs in three Canadian soil crust communities. We found in a culture-based study that they comprised 0.1-5.9% of the cultivable bacterial community in moss-, lichen- and cyanobacteria-dominated crust from sand dunes and sandy soils. Comparable in density to aerobic phototrophs in other habitats, the bacteriochlorophyll a-possessing pink and orange isolates were related to species of Methylobacterium (99.0-99.5%), Belnapia (97.4-98.8%), Muricoccus (94.4%) and Sphingomonas (96.6-98.5%), based on 16S rRNA gene sequences. Our results demonstrate that proteobacterial anoxygenic phototrophs may be found in dry soil environments, implying desiccation resistance as yet unreported for this group. By utilizing sunlight for part of their energy needs, aerobic phototrophs can accelerate organic carbon cycling in nutrient-poor arid soils. Their effects will be especially important as global climate change enhances soil erosion and consequent nutrient loss. PMID:23766251

  17. EFFECTS OF SOIL NITROGEN MANAGEMENT ON SOYBEAN NITROGEN RELATIONS AND BEAN LEAF BEETLE BIOLOGY

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bean leaf beetles (Cerotoma trifurcata) are serious insect pests of soybeans (Glycine max). This study was conducted to determine if soil nitrogen (N) input treatments would impact the biology of this economically-important pest species. The experiment was conducted in the soybean phase of a long-...

  18. Long-term Tillage influences on soil carbon, nitrogen, physical, chemical, and biological properties

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Long-term tillage influences physical, chemical, and biological properties of the soil environment and thereby crop production and quality. We evaluated the effect of long-term (>20 yrs) tillage no-till, spring till, and fall plus spring till under continuous spring wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) on s...

  19. Mature watermelon vine decline: evidence for the biological nature of a soil-borne problem

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mature watermelon vine decline (MWVD) is a late-season disease of unknown etiology, characterized by vine collapse and discolored, reduced root systems. To test for a biological cause of MWVD, soil was collected from two southern Indiana fields with a history of the disease for microplot and greenho...

  20. INITIAL STUDIES ON SOIL NITROGEN MANAGEMENT, SOYBEAN NITROGEN RELATIONS,AND BEAN LEAF BEETLE BIOLOGY

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bean leaf beetles (Cerotoma trifurcata) are serious insect pests of soybeans (Glycine max). This study was conducted to determine if soil nitrogen (N) input treatments would impact the biology of this emerging pest species. The experiment was conducted in the soybean phase of a long-term corn/soyb...

  1. METHODS FOR EVALUATING THE BIOLOGICAL IMPACT OF POTENTIALLY TOXIC WASTE APPLIED TO SOILS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The study was designed to evaluate two methods that can be used to estimate the biological impact of organics and inorganics that may be in wastes applied to land for treatment and disposal. The two methods were the contact test and the artificial soil test. The contact test is a...

  2. Resident biology restricts proliferation of Macrophomina phaseolina in brassicaceae seed meal meal amended soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    M. phaseolina is a pathogen of emerging importance in strawberry production systems. Studies were conducted to assess the efficacy of brassicaceae seed meal amendments for control of this pathogen and to determine the relative importance of soil biology and chemistry in any observed disease suppres...

  3. Flush of CO2 as a biologically based tool to predict nitrogen mineralization from soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A biologically based tool to improve nitrogen (N) management in cereal crops is currently lacking from soil testing programs, but very much needed to optimize N fertilizer inputs to be able apply enough N fertilizer to achieve high production and avoid excess application that is damaging to the envi...

  4. HYDROGEN PEROXIDE DECAY IN WATERS WITH SUSPENDED SOILS: EVIDENCE FOR BIOLOGICALLY MEDIATED PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Hydrogen peroxide decay studies have been conducted in suspensions of several well-characterized soils and in natural water samples. inetic and product studies indicated that the decay was biologically mediated and could be described by psuedo first-order rate expressions. t an i...

  5. Biological and Molecular Structure Analyses of the Controls on Soil Organic Matter Dynamics.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A combination of biological analysis, such as incubation and microbial biomass determination, 13C and 14C tracers, soil fractionation, and matrix analysis (LF, POM, silt, and clay) with molecular structure analysis (py-MBMS) on long-term sites with a C3 ' C4 crop switch provided the tools for determ...

  6. Biological Degradation of Black Carbon in Temperate Forest Soils: Effects of Clay Mineralogy and Nitrogen Availability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bird, J. A.; Santos, F.; Torn, M. S.

    2008-12-01

    A critical knowledge gap in soil organic carbon (SOC) cycling concerns the SOC portion collectively known as pyrogenic C or black carbon (BC), which is a chemically heterogeneous class of highly reduced compounds produced by incomplete combustion. While the stocks of BC are significant in surface soils worldwide, this SOC pool has been considered to be relatively inert with negligible biologically mediated degradation of BC occurring. We will present findings from a laboratory incubation of dual-labeled (13C/15N) BC and its precursor wood (Pinus ponderosa) in two temperate soils (Haploxeralfs) that differ in their clay mineralogy (granitic versus andesitic parent material) and organic C content. In addition, we used N additions in the granitic soil to investigate the effects of N availability on soil and substrate C and N cycling. Sterile controls were used to demonstrate that the BC turnover observed was biotic. The laboratory incubations were carried out at 25C and at 55% of soil water holding capacity. We are measuring the flux of mineralized 13C in respired CO2, dissolved organic C, soil microbial biomass, specific microbial groups (13C-phospholipid fatty acids) and density-defined soil organic matter fractions. The overall flux of 15N is being observed in the microbial biomass, soluble organic and inorganic pools, and organic matter fractions. We will present rates of biologically-mediated decomposition of BC and its precursor wood, as well as the effects of soil mineralogy and N availability on these rates and on products of decomposition. We will also present decomposition rates of native SOM in incubations with and without substrate to investigate C priming.

  7. Actinobacteria from Arid and Desert Habitats: Diversity and Biological Activity

    PubMed Central

    Mohammadipanah, Fatemeh; Wink, Joachim

    2016-01-01

    The lack of new antibiotics in the pharmaceutical pipeline guides more and more researchers to leave the classical isolation procedures and to look in special niches and ecosystems. Bioprospecting of extremophilic Actinobacteria through mining untapped strains and avoiding resiolation of known biomolecules is among the most promising strategies for this purpose. With this approach, members of acidtolerant, alkalitolerant, psychrotolerant, thermotolerant, halotolerant and xerotolerant Actinobacteria have been obtained from respective habitats. Among these, little survey exists on the diversity of Actinobacteria in arid areas, which are often adapted to relatively high temperatures, salt concentrations, and radiation. Therefore, arid and desert habitats are special ecosystems which can be recruited for the isolation of uncommon Actinobacteria with new metabolic capability. At the time of this writing, members of Streptomyces, Micromonospora, Saccharothrix, Streptosporangium, Cellulomonas, Amycolatopsis, Geodermatophilus, Lechevalieria, Nocardia, and Actinomadura are reported from arid habitats. However, metagenomic data present dominant members of the communities in desiccating condition of areas with limited water availability that are not yet isolated. Furthermore, significant diverse types of polyketide synthase (PKS) and non-ribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) genes are detected in xerophilic and xerotolerant Actinobacteria and some bioactive compounds are reported from them. Rather than pharmaceutically active metabolites, molecules with protection activity against drying such as Ectoin and Hydroxyectoin with potential application in industry and agriculture have also been identified from xerophilic Actinobacteria. In addition, numerous biologically active small molecules are expected to be discovered from arid adapted Actinobacteria in the future. In the current survey, the diversity and biotechnological potential of Actinobacteria obtained from arid ecosystems, along with the recent work trend on Iranian arid soils, are reported. PMID:26858692

  8. Measurement of microbial biomass and activity in landfill soils.

    SciTech Connect

    Bogner, J. E.; Miller, R. M.; Spokas, K.; Environmental Research

    1995-01-01

    Two complementary techniques, which have been widely used to provide a general measure of microbial biomass or microbial activity in natural soils, were evaluated for their applicability to soils from the Mallard North and Mallard Lake Landfills, DuPage County, Illinois, U.S.A. Included were: (1) a potassium sulphate extraction technique with quantification of organic carbon for measurement of microbial biomass; and (2) an arginine ammonification technique for microbial activity. Four profiles consisting of replaced soils were sampled for this study; units included topsoil (mixed mollisol A and B horizons), compacted clay cover (local calcareous Wisconsinan age glacial till), and mixed soil/refuse samples. Internally consistent results across the four profiles and good correlations with other independent indicators of microbial activity (moisture, organic matter content, nitrogen, and phosphorus) suggest that, even though these techniques were developed mainly for natural mineral soils, they are also applicable to disturbed landfill soils.

  9. Effects of Fertilization on Tomato Growth and Soil Enzyme Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mu, Zhen; Hu, Xue-Feng; Cheng, Chang; Luo, Zhi-qing

    2015-04-01

    To study the effects of different fertilizer applications on soil enzyme activity, tomato plant growth and tomato yield and quality, a field experiment on tomato cultivation was carried out in the suburb of Shanghai. Three fertilizer treatments, chemical fertilizer (CF) (N, 260 g/kg; P, 25.71g/kg; K, 83.00g/kg), rapeseed cake manure (CM) (N, 37.4 g/kg; P, 9.0 g/kg; K, 8.46 g/kg), crop-leaf fermenting manure (FM) (N, 23.67 g/kg; P, 6.39 g/kg; K 44.32 g/kg), and a control without using any fertilizers (CK), were designed. The total amounts of fertilizer application to each plot for the CF, CM, FM and CK were 0.6 kg, 1.35 kg, 3.75 kg and 0 kg, respectively, 50% of which were applied as base fertilizer, and another 50% were applied after the first fruit picking as top dressing. Each experimental plot was 9 m2 (1 m × 9 m) in area. Each treatment was replicated for three times. No any pesticides and herbicides were applied during the entire period of tomato growth to prevent their disturbance to soil microbial activities. Soil enzyme activities at each plot were constantly tested during the growing period; the tomato fruit quality was also constantly analyzed and the tomato yield was calculated after the final harvesting. The results were as follows: (1) Urease activity in the soils treated with the CF, CM and FM increased quickly after applying base fertilizer. That with the CF reached the highest level. Sucrase activity was inhibited by the CF and CM to some extent, which was 32.4% and 11.2% lower than that with the CK, respectively; while that with the FM was 15.7% higher than that with the CK. Likewise, catalase activity with the CF increased by 12.3% - 28.6%; that with the CM increased by 87.8% - 95.1%; that with the FM increased by 86.4% - 93.0%. Phosphatase activity with the CF increased rapidly and reached a maximum 44 days after base fertilizer application, and then declined quickly. In comparison, that with the CM and FM increased slowly and reached a maximum 66 days after base fertilizer application, but maintained the high level for a long time. In short, the application of organic manure, especially the fermenting manure, is more beneficial to maintain high levels of soil enzyme activities and biodiversity. (2) The tomato yield treated with the CF, CM, FM and CK was 50055 kg/ha, 37814 kg/ha, 36965 kg/ha and 29937 kg/ha, respectively. The yield increasing rates of the CF, CM and FM were 67.2%, 26.3% and 23.5%, respectively. The application of chemical fertilizer could raise the tomato yield more effectively. The use of organic manure, especially the fermenting manure, however, could improve the fruit quality more effectively, especially increase soluble sugar and vitamin C contents and reduce nitrate content in tomato fruit significantly. The application of biological fermenting manure is beneficial to promote the recycling agriculture in China. It could also be used in the organic farming promisingly.

  10. Thermal and biological treatability studies on explosives-contaminated soil from a DOD site

    SciTech Connect

    Shultz, S.R.; Taylor, C.; Shultz, D.W.R.; Cichelli, J.; Pinion, J.

    1994-12-31

    Laboratory- and bench-scale treatability studies were conducted on explosives-contaminated soil from the former Nebraska Ordnance Plant (NOP) Site by RUST Environment and Infrastructure (RUST) for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) in order to obtain site-specific information for technologies evaluated in the Feasibility Study for the site. Both thermal and biological treatment were identified in the Feasibility Study as technologies that could potentially be used to remediate the explosives-contaminated soil at the site. However, additional information specific to the chemical concentrations and soil properties of the site was required to fully evaluate these technologies. Therefore, these studies were initiated in order to gain more information. The studies summarized in this paper include a rotary kiln incineration and geotechnical study conducted by RUST, Cross/Tessitore and Associates (C/TA) under subcontract to RUST, and a biological treatment study conducted by Radian Corporation (Radian) under subcontract to RUST.

  11. Tree Species Traits Influence Soil Physical, Chemical, and Biological Properties in High Elevation Forests

    PubMed Central

    Ayres, Edward; Steltzer, Heidi; Berg, Sarah; Wallenstein, Matthew D.; Simmons, Breana L.; Wall, Diana H.

    2009-01-01

    Background Previous studies have shown that plants often have species-specific effects on soil properties. In high elevation forests in the Southern Rocky Mountains, North America, areas that are dominated by a single tree species are often adjacent to areas dominated by another tree species. Here, we assessed soil properties beneath adjacent stands of trembling aspen, lodgepole pine, and Engelmann spruce, which are dominant tree species in this region and are distributed widely in North America. We hypothesized that soil properties would differ among stands dominated by different tree species and expected that aspen stands would have higher soil temperatures due to their open structure, which, combined with higher quality litter, would result in increased soil respiration rates, nitrogen availability, and microbial biomass, and differences in soil faunal community composition. Methodology/Principal Findings We assessed soil physical, chemical, and biological properties at four sites where stands of aspen, pine, and spruce occurred in close proximity to one-another in the San Juan Mountains, Colorado. Leaf litter quality differed among the tree species, with the highest nitrogen (N) concentration and lowest lignin∶N in aspen litter. Nitrogen concentration was similar in pine and spruce litter, but lignin∶N was highest in pine litter. Soil temperature and moisture were highest in aspen stands, which, in combination with higher litter quality, probably contributed to faster soil respiration rates from stands of aspen. Soil carbon and N content, ammonium concentration, and microbial biomass did not differ among tree species, but nitrate concentration was highest in aspen soil and lowest in spruce soil. In addition, soil fungal, bacterial, and nematode community composition and rotifer, collembolan, and mesostigmatid mite abundance differed among the tree species, while the total abundance of nematodes, tardigrades, oribatid mites, and prostigmatid mites did not. Conclusions/Significance Although some soil characteristics were unaffected by tree species identity, our results clearly demonstrate that these dominant tree species are associated with soils that differ in several physical, chemical, and biotic properties. Ongoing environmental changes in this region, e.g. changes in fire regime, frequency of insect outbreaks, changes in precipitation patterns and snowpack, and land-use change, may alter the relative abundance of these tree species over coming decades, which in turn will likely alter the soils. PMID:19536334

  12. Role of Biological Soil Crusts on hydrological cycle drivers of semiarid ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Canton, Y.; Chamizo, S.; Rodriguez-Caballero, E.; Miralles, I.; Lazaro, R.; Sole-Benet, A.; Domingo, F.

    2012-04-01

    In arid and semiarid ecosystems, where plant cover is scarce, other surface components like soil crusts or stones acquire a very relevant role on local hydrologic regimes, controlling infiltration rates and they also affect erosion. The interplant spaces of these ecosystems are very often covered by biological soil crusts (BSCs), which are a community of microorganisms, including cyanobacteria, algae, fungi, lichens and mosses living in the soil surface. These BSCs regulate the horizontal and vertical fluxes of water, carbon, and nutrients into and from the soil and play crucial hydrological, geomorphological and ecological roles in these ecosystems. We analyse the role of BSCs on the different components of the water balance (infiltration-runoff, evaporation and soil moisture) in two representative semiarid ecosystems of SE Spain. The influence of BSCs on runoff-infiltration and erosion has been studied by rainfall simulations and with field plots under natural rainfall at different spatial scales, on BSCs in different stages of their development. Results show higher infiltration in BSCs than in physical crusts and different responses among BSCs depending on soil and rainfall properties and the considered spatial scale but, as a general trend, the greater the development of the BSCs, the greater the infiltration rate and the lower the sediment yield. In addition, given that BSCs modify many soil surface properties, such as surface stability, cohesiveness, cracking, porosity or micro-topography, which also affect runoff and erosion processes, we have examined the relative importance of BSCs features (cover, composition, roughness, water repellency, etc) on runoff and erosion and their direct and indirect relationships and how they interact with rainfall characteristics. By using microlysimeters, similar evaporative losses were measured among crust types in late spring when ambient conditions were quite warm and all crust types lost water very quickly. However, monitoring of soil moisture during a whole year shows differences in soil moisture content and soil water loss between the types of BSCs depending on the moment of the year. Thus, during wet periods higher soil moisture and slower soil water losses were recorded in lichen-covered than in cyanobacteria-covered soils. While during dry periods, faster soil water depletion and lower soil moisture occurred under lichen than in soils covered by cyanobacterial BSCs. In conclusion, our results show the important roles of BSCs modulating the water cycle in semiarid ecosystems.

  13. The biology of insecticidal activity and resistance.

    PubMed

    Perry, Trent; Batterham, Philip; Daborn, Phillip J

    2011-07-01

    Identifying insecticide resistance mechanisms is paramount for pest insect control, as the understandings that underpin insect control strategies must provide ways of detecting and managing resistance. Insecticide resistance studies rely heavily on detailed biochemical and genetic analyses. Although there have been many successes, there are also many examples of resistance that still challenge us. As a precursor to rational pest insect control, the biology of the insect, within the contexts of insecticide modes of action and insecticide metabolism, must be well understood. It makes sense to initiate this research in the best model insect system, Drosophila melanogaster, and translate these findings and methodologies to other insects. Here we explore the usefulness of the D.melanogaster model in studying metabolic-based insecticide resistances, target-site mediated resistances and identifying novel insecticide targets, whilst highlighting the importance of having a more complete understanding of insect biology for insecticide studies. PMID:21426939

  14. [Effects of brackish water irrigation on soil enzyme activity, soil CO2 flux and organic matter decomposition].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qian-qian; Wang, Fei; Liu, Tao; Chu, Gui-xin

    2015-09-01

    Brackish water irrigation utilization is an important way to alleviate water resource shortage in arid region. A field-plot experiment was set up to study the impact of the salinity level (0.31, 3.0 or 5.0 g · L(-1) NaCl) of irrigated water on activities of soil catalase, invertase, β-glucosidase, cellulase and polyphenoloxidase in drip irrigation condition, and the responses of soil CO2 flux and organic matter decomposition were also determined by soil carbon dioxide flux instrument (LI-8100) and nylon net bag method. The results showed that in contrast with fresh water irrigation treatment (CK), the activities of invertase, β-glucosidase and cellulase in the brackish water (3.0 g · L(-1)) irrigation treatment declined by 31.7%-32.4%, 29.7%-31.6%, 20.8%-24.3%, respectively, while soil polyphenoloxidase activity was obviously enhanced with increasing the salinity level of irrigated water. Compared to CK, polyphenoloxidase activity increased by 2.4% and 20.5%, respectively, in the brackish water and saline water irrigation treatments. Both soil microbial biomass carbon and microbial quotient decreased with increasing the salinity level, whereas, microbial metabolic quotient showed an increasing tendency with increasing the salinity level. Soil CO2 fluxes in the different treatments were in the order of CK (0.31 g · L(-1)) > brackish water irrigation (3.0 g · L(-1)) ≥ saline water irrigation (5.0 g · L(-1)). Moreover, CO2 flux from plastic film mulched soil was always much higher than that from no plastic film mulched soil, regardless the salinity of irrigated water. Compared with CK, soil CO2 fluxes in the saline water and brackish water treatments decreased by 29.8% and 28.2% respectively in the boll opening period. The decomposition of either cotton straw or alfalfa straw in the different treatments was in the sequence of CK (0.31 g · L(-1)) > brackish water irrigation (3.0 g · L(-1)) > saline water treatment (5.0 g · L(-1)). The organic matter decomposition rate in the plastic film mulched soil was significantly higher than that in the no plastic film mulched soil. 125 days after incubation, the recovery rates of cotton straw and alfalfa straw were 39.7% and 46.5% with saline water irrigation, 36.3% and 36.5% with brackish water irrigation, and 30.5% and 35.4% with CK, respectively. In conclusion, brackish water drip irrigation had a significant adverse effect on soil enzyme activities, which decreased soil microbial biomass, soil CO2 flux and soil organic matter decomposition, and subsequently deteriorated the soil biological characteristics in oasis farmland. PMID:26785557

  15. Microbial Community Structure and Enzyme Activities in Semiarid Agricultural Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acosta-Martinez, V. A.; Zobeck, T. M.; Gill, T. E.; Kennedy, A. C.

    2002-12-01

    The effect of agricultural management practices on the microbial community structure and enzyme activities of semiarid soils of different textures in the Southern High Plains of Texas were investigated. The soils (sandy clay loam, fine sandy loam and loam) were under continuous cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) or in rotations with peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.), sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L.) or wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), and had different water management (irrigated or dryland) and tillage (conservation or conventional). Microbial community structure was investigated using fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) analysis by gas chromatography and enzyme activities, involved in C, N, P and S cycling of soils, were measured (mg product released per kg soil per h). The activities of b-glucosidase, b-glucosaminidase, alkaline phosphatase, and arylsulfatase were significantly (P<0.05) increased in soils under cotton rotated with sorghum or wheat, and due to conservation tillage in comparison to continuous cotton under conventional tillage. Principal component analysis showed FAME profiles of these soils separated distinctly along PC1 (20 %) and PC2 (13 %) due to their differences in soil texture and management. No significant differences were detected in FAME profiles due to management practices for the same soils in this sampling period. Enzyme activities provide early indications of the benefits in microbial populations and activities and soil organic matter under crop rotations and conservation tillage in comparison to the typical practices in semiarid regions of continuous cotton and conventional tillage.

  16. The influence of biological soil crusts on dew deposition in Gurbantunggut Desert, Northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Jing; Zhang, Yuan-ming; Downing, Alison; Cheng, Jun-hui; Zhou, Xiao-bing; Zhang, Bing-chang

    2009-12-01

    SummaryDew is an important source of moisture for plants, biological soil crusts, invertebrates and small vertebrates in desert environments. In this paper, measurements were taken to investigate the effects of three different types of biological soil crusts (cyanobacteria, lichen and moss) and bare sand on dew deposition in the Gurbantunggut Desert. Dew quantities were measured using micro-lysimeters with a diameter of 6 cm and a height of 3.5 cm. The results showed that the total amount of dew deposited increased with the development of soil crusts, from bare sand to cyanobacterial crust to lichen crust to moss crust. The average amount of dew deposited daily on the moss crust was the highest of all and it was significant higher than the other three soil surfaces (lichen crust, cyanobacterial crust and bare sand) ( p < 0.05). During the period of the study, for each type of crust studied, the maximum amount of dew recorded was several times greater than the minimum. Moss crust was characterized by having the greatest amount of dew at dawn and also the maximum amount of dew deposited, whereas bare sand yielded the lowest amount of dew, with lichen crust and cyanobacterial crust exhibiting intermediate values. However, this was not the case for dew duration, as bare sand retained moisture for the longest period of time, followed by cyanobacterial crust, moss crust and finally lichen crust. Dew continued to condense even after sunrise. Furthermore, the differences in dew deposition may be partially attributed to an effect of the biological soil crusts on surface area. This study demonstrates the important effect of biological soil crusts upon dew deposition and may assist in evaluating the role of dew in arid and semi-arid environments.

  17. Conservation tillage, optimal water and organic nutrient supply enhance soil microbial activities during wheat (Triticum Aestivum L.) cultivation

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Pankaj; Singh, Geeta; Singh, Rana P.

    2011-01-01

    The field experiments were conducted on sandy loam soil at New Delhi, during 2007 and 2008 to investigate the effect of conservation tillage, irrigation regimes (sub-optimal, optimal and supra-optimal water regimes), and integrated nutrient management (INM) practices on soil biological parameters in wheat cultivation. The conservation tillage soils has shown significant (p<0.05) increase in soil respiration (81.1%), soil microbial biomass carbon (SMBC) (104%) and soil dehydrogenase (DH) (59.2%) compared to the conventional tillage soil. Optimum water supply (3-irrigations) enhanced soil respiration over sub-optimum and supra-optimum irrigations by 13.32% and 79% respectively. Soil dehydrogenase (DH) activity in optimum water regime has also increased by 23.33% and 8.18% respectively over the other two irrigation regimes. Similarly, SMBC has also increased by 12.14% and 27.17% respectively in soil with optimum water supply compared to that of sub-optimum and supra-optimum water regime fields. The maximum increase in soil microbial activities is found when sole organic source (50% Farm Yard Manure+25% biofertilizer+25% Green Manure) has been used in combination with the conservation tillage and the optimum water supply. Study demonstrated that microbial activity could be regulated by tillage, water and nitrogen management in the soil in a sustainable manner. PMID:24031665

  18. Biological soil crusts as key drivers for CO2 fluxes in semiarid ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chamizo, Sonia; Miralles, Isabel; Rodrguez-Caballero, Emilio; Ortega, Ral; Ladrn de Guevara, Mnica; Luna, Lourdes; Cantn, Yolanda

    2014-05-01

    The quantification of carbon (C) fluxes for the different ecosystems and the knowledge of whether they act as sources or sinks of C has acquired especial importance during the last years. This is particularly demanding for arid and semiarid ecosystems, for which the available information is very scarce. In these ecosystems, the interplant spaces are commonly covered by a thin layer of organisms including cyanobacteria, green algae, lichens and mosses, which are known as biological soil crusts (BSCs) and, though practically negligible, play a fundamental role in regulating gas exchange into and from soil. BSCs represent the main organisms capable of respiration and photosynthesis in the interplant spaces and are considered the main source of organic carbon in many arid and semiarid areas. Although several studies have pointed to the predominant role of BSCs as sources of CO2, on the contrary, other studies have emphasized their important role as sinks of CO2, being required to establish their precise effect regulating CO2 fluxes. The main purpose of this study was to enlighten the role of BSCs on CO2 fluxes. With this aim, CO2 fluxes were measured on different BSC types (cyanobacteria-, lichen- and moss-dominated BSCs) after several rainfalls and periods of soil drying in two semiarid ecosystems of SE Spain. CO2 exchange was measured using infrared gas analyzers (IRGA): net flux was measured with a transparent custom chamber attached to a Licor Li-6400, and respiration with a respirometer EGM-4 (PPsystems). Photosynthesis was determined as the difference between both measurements. Our results showed that moisture was the major factor controlling CO2 fluxes in BSCs. During the summer season, when soil was dry, all BSCs showed CO2 fluxes close to 0. However, once it rains and BSCs become active, a significant increase in photosynthesis and respiration rates was found. Whereas respiration was the main CO2 flux in bare soils, in BSCs regardless respiration was higher, these CO2 emissions were compensated, during several days following the rain, by CO2 fixation through photosynthesis, thus resulting in a positive net flux or net uptake of CO2. However, differences were observed between BSC types. Moss-dominated BSCs, regardless being more developed than cyanobacteria and lichen BSCs, showed lower net photosynthesis rates because of their higher respiration rates. These findings support the idea that BSCs act as important C sinks during the periods when they are active, although the rate of CO2 assimilation may greatly depend on the type of BSC. The results of this study demonstrate the need to consider the effect of different types of BSC in C balance models on local to global scales to improve our knowledge on C quantification and to make more accurate predictions of the effects of climate change in arid and semiarid regions where this type of soil cover is a key ecosystem component.

  19. Assimilation of Passive and Active Microwave Soil Moisture Retrievals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Draper, C. S.; Reichle, R. H.; DeLannoy, G. J. M.; Liu, Q.

    2012-01-01

    Root-zone soil moisture is an important control over the partition of land surface energy and moisture, and the assimilation of remotely sensed near-surface soil moisture has been shown to improve model profile soil moisture [1]. To date, efforts to assimilate remotely sensed near-surface soil moisture at large scales have focused on soil moisture derived from the passive microwave Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) and the active Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT; together with its predecessor on the European Remote Sensing satellites (ERS. The assimilation of passive and active microwave soil moisture observations has not yet been directly compared, and so this study compares the impact of assimilating ASCAT and AMSR-E soil moisture data, both separately and together. Since the soil moisture retrieval skill from active and passive microwave data is thought to differ according to surface characteristics [2], the impact of each assimilation on the model soil moisture skill is assessed according to land cover type, by comparison to in situ soil moisture observations.

  20. Concentration-dependent effect of photoluminescent carbon dots on the microbial activity of the soil studied by combination methods.

    PubMed

    Liu, Wenjuan; Yao, Jun; Chai, Hankuai; Zhao, Zhibo; Zhang, Chi; Jin, Jingnan; Choi, Martin M F

    2015-03-01

    Carbon dots (Cdots) have a great potential for their widespread biological applications. However, there are a few studies on the biosafety of Cdots. In this work, the biological effect of Cdots on soil microorganism was analyzed by microcalorimetry, soil enzymatic activities, and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). The addition of Cdots causes a gradual increase of the maximum heat power (P peak) and the growth rate (k) at low concentration of Cdots (0.0-50.00 ?g/g). But there is no significant effect of Cdots on the total heat output (Q total). The urease and fluorescein diacetate esterase activities demonstrate that introduction of Cdots to soil has almost no impact on the structure and function of the soil microbial community and microbial processes. The DGGE results exhibit that the control and the Cdots-treated soils display similar patterns, indicating that Cdots have little effect on the microbial community structure. PMID:25769105

  1. Biology Research Activities: Teacher's Edition (with Answers).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newman, Barbara

    This book is part of the series "Explorations in Science" which contains enrichment activities for the general science curriculum. Each book in the series contains innovative and traditional projects for both the bright and average, the self-motivated, and those who find activity motivating. Each activity is self-contained and provides everything

  2. Biology Research Activities: Teacher's Edition (with Answers).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newman, Barbara

    This book is part of the series "Explorations in Science" which contains enrichment activities for the general science curriculum. Each book in the series contains innovative and traditional projects for both the bright and average, the self-motivated, and those who find activity motivating. Each activity is self-contained and provides everything…

  3. Simulation of Viking biology experiments suggests smectites not palagonites, as martian soil analogues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banin, A.; Margulies, L.

    1983-01-01

    An experimental comparison of palagonites and a smectite (montmorillonite) was performed in a simulation of the Viking Biology Labelled Release (LR) experiment in order to judge which mineral is a better Mars soil analog material (MarSAM). Samples of palagonite were obtained from cold weathering environments and volcanic soil, and the smectite was extracted from Wyoming Bentonite and converted to H or Fe types. Decomposition reaction kinetics were examined in the LR simulation, which on the Lander involved interaction of the martian soil with organic compounds. Reflectance spectroscopy indicated that smectites bearing Fe(III) in well-crystallized sites are not good MarSAMS. The palagonites did not cause the formate decomposition and C-14 emission detected in the LR, indicating that palagonites are also not good MarSAMS. Smectites, however, may be responsible for ion exchange, molecular adsorption, and catalysis in martian soil.

  4. Soil surface disturbances in cold deserts: Effects on nitrogenase activity in cyanobacterial-lichen soil crusts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, Jayne

    1996-01-01

    CyanobacteriaMichen soil crusts can be a dominant source of nitrogen for cold-desert ecosystems. Effects of surface disturbance from footprints, bike and vehicle tracks on the nitrogenase activity in these crusts was investigated. Surface disturbances reduced nitrogenase activity by 30-100%. Crusts dominated by the cyanobacterium Microcoleus vaginatus on sandy soils were the most susceptible to disruption; crusts on gypsiferous soils were the least susceptible. Crusts where the soil lichen Collema tenax was present showed less immediate effects; however, nitrogenase activity still declined over time. Levels of nitrogenase activity reduction were affected by the degree of soil disruption and whether sites were dominated by cyanobacteria with or without heterocysts. Consequently, anthropogenic surface disturbances may have serious implications for nitrogen budgets in these ecosystems.

  5. Effects of soil fumigants on methanotrophic activity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Negative impacts on methane (CH4) oxidation capacity have already been observed for a variety of agronomic practices, but effect of soil fumigation on CH4 oxidation has not been investigated. Fumigation is a common practice in agricultural crop and nursery seedling protection. Soils from various agr...

  6. Ficus carica L. (Moraceae): Phytochemistry, Traditional Uses and Biological Activities

    PubMed Central

    Mawa, Shukranul; Husain, Khairana; Jantan, Ibrahim

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes the botanical features of Ficus carica L. (Moraceae), its wide variety of chemical constituents, its use in traditional medicine as remedies for many health problems, and its biological activities. The plant has been used traditionally to treat various ailments such as gastric problems, inflammation, and cancer. Phytochemical studies on the leaves and fruits of the plant have shown that they are rich in phenolics, organic acids, and volatile compounds. However, there is little information on the phytochemicals present in the stem and root. Reports on the biological activities of the plant are mainly on its crude extracts which have been proven to possess many biological activities. Some of the most interesting therapeutic effects include anticancer, hepatoprotective, hypoglycemic, hypolipidemic, and antimicrobial activities. Thus, studies related to identification of the bioactive compounds and correlating them to their biological activities are very useful for further research to explore the potential of F. carica as a source of therapeutic agents. PMID:24159359

  7. [Effects of understory removal and nitrogen addition on the soil chemical and biological properties of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica plantation in Keerqin Sandy Land].

    PubMed

    Lin, Gui-Gang; Zhao, Qiong; Zhao, Lei; Li, Hui-Chao; Zeng, De-Hui

    2012-05-01

    A full factorial experiment was conducted to study the effects of understory removal and nitrogen addition (8 g x m(-2)) on the soil NO(3-)-N and NH(4+)-N concentrations, potential net nitrogen mineralization rate (PNM) and nitrification rate (PNN), microbial biomass C (MBC) and N (MBN), MBC/MBN, urease and acid phosphomonoesterase activities, and Olsen-P concentration in a Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica plantation in Keerqin Sandy Land during a growth season. Understory removal decreased the soil NH(4+)-N concentration, PNM, MBC, and MBN/MBN significantly, increased the soil Olsen-P concentration, but had little effects on the soil NO(3-)-N concentration, PNN, and urease and acid phosphomonoesterase activities. Nitrogen addition increased the soil NO(3-)-N concentration, PNM and PNN significantly, but had little effects on the other test properties. The interaction between understory removal and nitrogen addition had significant effects on the soil NH(4+)-N concentration, but little effects on the soil NO(3-)-N concentration. However, the soil NO(3-)-N concentration in the plots of understory removal with nitrogen addition was increased by 27%, compared with the plots of nitrogen addition alone, which might lead to the leaching of NO3-. It was suggested that understory vegetation could play an important role in affecting the soil chemical and biological properties in Mongolian pine plantations, and hence, the importance of understory vegetation should not be neglected when the forest management and restoration were implemented. PMID:22919826

  8. Effects of Altered Temperature & Precipitation on Soil Bacterial & Microfaunal Communities as Mediated by Biological Soil Crusts

    SciTech Connect

    Neher, Deborah A.

    2004-08-31

    With increased temperatures in our original pot study we observed a decline in lichen/moss crust cover and with that a decline in carbon and nitrogen fixation, and thus a probable decline of C and N input into crusts and soils. Soil bacteria and fauna were affected negatively by increased temperature in both light and dark crusts, and with movement from cool to hot and hot to hotter desert climates. Crust microbial biomass and relative abundance of diazotrophs was reduced greatly after one year, even in pots that were not moved from their original location, although no change in diazotroph community structure was observed. Populations of soil fauna moved from cool to hot deserts were affected more negatively than those moved from hot to hotter deserts.

  9. Soil and Litter Animals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lippert, George

    1991-01-01

    A lesson plan for soil study utilizes the Tullgren extraction method to illustrate biological concepts. It includes background information, equipment, collection techniques, activities, and references for identification guides about soil fauna. (MCO)

  10. Analysis and biological activities of anthocyanins.

    PubMed

    Kong, Jin-Ming; Chia, Lian-Sai; Goh, Ngoh-Khang; Chia, Tet-Fatt; Brouillard, R

    2003-11-01

    Anthocyanins are naturally occurring compounds that impart color to fruits, vegetables, and plants. They are probably the most important group of visible plant pigments besides chlorophyll. Apart from imparting color to plants, anthocyanins also have an array of health-promoting benefits, as they can protect against a variety of oxidants through a various number of mechanisms. However, anthocyanins have received less attention than other flavonoids, despite this. This article reviews their biological functions and pre-clinical studies, as well as the most recent analytical techniques concerning anthocyanin isolation and identification. PMID:14561507

  11. Biological Activity of Recently Discovered Halogenated Marine Natural Products

    PubMed Central

    Gribble, Gordon W.

    2015-01-01

    This review presents the biological activity—antibacterial, antifungal, anti-parasitic, antiviral, antitumor, antiinflammatory, antioxidant, and enzymatic activity—of halogenated marine natural products discovered in the past five years. Newly discovered examples that do not report biological activity are not included. PMID:26133553

  12. Sensitive bioassay for detection of biologically active ricin in food

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The potential use of ricin as an agent of biological warfare highlights the need to develop fast and effective methods to detect biologically active ricin. The current “gold standard” for ricin detection is an in vivo mouse bioassay; however, this method is not practical to test on a large number of...

  13. Effects of CO[sub 2] and climate change on forest trees: Soil biology and enzymology

    SciTech Connect

    Moldenke, A.R.; Baumeister, N.; Caldwell, B.A.; Griffith, R.; Ingham, E.R.; Wernz, J. ); Johnson, M.G.; Rygiewicz, P.T.; Tingey, D.T. )

    1994-06-01

    Samples of Teracosm soils were analyzed shortly after initial setup to determine whether initial conditions were equivalent and matched expected values for local soils. Total and active fungal biomass, active bacterial biomass and protozoan numbers were reduced, with greatest decreases occurring in the A horizon. No effect was observed on total bacterial biomass, nematode or anthropod densities, but changes in nematode and arthropod species composition occurred. Significant differences in total density and species composition occurred between the enclosed Teracosms and the open controls. Arthropod and nematode community structure in the three altitudinal field sites had significantly diverged. No significant differences in activities of key soil enzymes in C- and N-cycling (acid phosphatase, protease, B-glucosidase, phenol oxidase and peroxidase) were found between initial samples relative to treatment, but all levels were significantly difference relative to depth in soil profile. Activities were within ranges previously observed in forests of the Pacific Northwest.

  14. Proliferation of diversified clostridial species during biological soil disinfestation incorporated with plant biomass under various conditions.

    PubMed

    Mowlick, Subrata; Takehara, Toshiaki; Kaku, Nobuo; Ueki, Katsuji; Ueki, Atsuko

    2013-09-01

    Biological soil disinfestation (BSD) involves the anaerobic decomposition of plant biomass by microbial communities leading to control of plant pathogens. We analyzed bacterial communities in soil of a model experiment of BSD, as affected by biomass incorporation under various conditions, to find out the major anaerobic bacterial groups which emerged after BSD treatments. The soil was treated with Brassica juncea plants, wheat bran, or Avena strigosa plants, irrigated at 20 or 30% moisture content and incubated at 25-30C for 17days. The population of Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. spinaciae incorporated at the start of the experiment declined markedly for some BSD conditions and rather high concentrations of acetate and butyrate were detected from these BSD-treated soils. The polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis analysis based on the V3 region of 16S rRNA gene sequences from the soil DNA revealed that bacterial profiles greatly changed according to the treatment conditions. Based on the clone library analysis, phylogenetically diverse clostridial species appeared exceedingly dominant in the bacterial community of BSD soil incorporated with Brassica plants or wheat bran, in which the pathogen was suppressed completely. Species in the class Clostridia such as Clostridium saccharobutylicum, Clostridium acetobutylicum, Clostridium xylanovorans, Oxobacter pfennigii, Clostridium pasteurianum, Clostridium sufflavum, Clostridium cylindrosporum, etc. were commonly recognized as closely related species of the dominant clone groups from these soil samples. PMID:23132344

  15. Biologically active secondary metabolites from marine cyanobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Nunnery, Joshawna K.; Mevers, Emily; Gerwick, William H.

    2010-01-01

    Marine cyanobacteria are a rich source of complex bioactive secondary metabolites which derive from mixed biosynthetic pathways. Recently, several marine cyanobacterial natural products have garnered much attention due to their intriguing structures and exciting anti-proliferative or cancer cell toxic activities. Several other recently discovered secondary metabolites exhibit insightful neurotoxic activities whereas others are showing pronounced anti-inflammatory activity. A number of anti-infective compounds displaying activity against neglected diseases have also been identified, which include viridamides A and B, gallinamide A, dragonamide E, and the almiramides. PMID:21030245

  16. Biological Soil Crusts from Coastal Dunes at the Baltic Sea: Cyanobacterial and Algal Biodiversity and Related Soil Properties.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Karoline; Mikhailyuk, Tatiana; Dreßler, Mirko; Leinweber, Peter; Karsten, Ulf

    2016-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are known as "ecosystem-engineers" that have important, multifunctional ecological roles in primary production, in nutrient and hydrological cycles, and in stabilization of soils. These communities, however, are almost unstudied in coastal dunes of the temperate zone. Hence, for the first time, the biodiversity of cyanobacterial and algal dominated BSCs collected in five dunes from the southern Baltic Sea coast on the islands Rügen and Usedom (Germany) was investigated in connection with physicochemical soil parameters. The species composition of cyanobacteria and algae was identified with direct determination of crust subsamples, cultural methods, and diatom slides. To investigate the influence of soil properties on species composition, the texture, pH, electrical conductivity, carbonate content, total contents of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and the bioavailable phosphorus-fraction (PO4 (3-)) were analyzed in adjacent BSC-free surface soils at each study site. The data indicate that BSCs in coastal dunes of the southern Baltic Sea represent an ecologically important vegetation form with a surprisingly high site-specific diversity of 19 cyanobacteria, 51 non-diatom algae, and 55 diatoms. All dominant species of the genera Coleofasciculus, Lyngbya, Microcoleus, Nostoc, Hydrocoryne, Leptolyngbya, Klebsormidium, and Lobochlamys are typical aero-terrestrial cyanobacteria and algae, respectively. This first study of coastal sand dunes in the Baltic region provides compelling evidence that here the BSCs were dominated by cyanobacteria, algae, or a mixture of both. Among the physicochemical soil properties, the total phosphorus content of the BSC-free sand was the only factor that significantly influenced the cyanobacterial and algal community structure of BSCs in coastal dunes. PMID:26507846

  17. Carbon exchange in biological soil crust communities under differential temperatures and soil water contents: implications for global change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grote, Edmund E.; Belnap, Jayne; Housman, David C.; Sparks, Jed P.

    2010-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) are an integral part of the soil system in arid regions worldwide, stabilizing soil surfaces, aiding vascular plant establishment, and are significant sources of ecosystem nitrogen and carbon. Hydration and temperature primarily control ecosystem CO2 flux in these systems. Using constructed mesocosms for incubations under controlled laboratory conditions, we examined the effect of temperature (5-35 1C) and water content (WC, 20-100%) on CO2 exchange in light cyanobacterially dominated) and dark cyanobacteria/lichen and moss dominated) biocrusts of the cool Colorado Plateau Desert in Utah and the hot Chihuahuan Desert in New Mexico. In light crusts from both Utah and New Mexico, net photosynthesis was highest at temperatures 430 1C. Net photosynthesis in light crusts from Utah was relatively insensitive to changes in soil moisture. In contrast, light crusts from New Mexico tended to exhibit higher rates of net photosynthesis at higher soil moisture. Dark crusts originating from both sites exhibited the greatest net photosynthesis at intermediate soil water content (40-60%). Declines in net photosynthesis were observed in dark crusts with crusts from Utah showing declines at temperatures 425 1C and those originating from New Mexico showing declines at temperatures 435 1C. Maximum net photosynthesis in all crust types from all locations were strongly influenced by offsets in the optimal temperature and water content for gross photosynthesis compared with dark respiration. Gross photosynthesis tended to be maximized at some intermediate value of temperature and water content and dark respiration tended to increase linearly. The results of this study suggest biocrusts are capable of CO2 exchange under a wide range of conditions. However, significant changes in the magnitude of this exchange should be expected for the temperature and precipitation changes suggested by current climate models.

  18. Safracins, new antitumor antibiotics. III. Biological activity.

    PubMed

    Ikeda, Y; Shimada, Y; Honjo, K; Okumoto, T; Munakata, T

    1983-10-01

    Safracins A and B have antibacterial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria in vitro but no therapeutic activity in mice infected with Staphylococcus aureus. Safracins A and B induce abnormal morphological changes in Echerichia coli cells. Tests with transplantable mice tumors demonstrate that safracins A and B inhibit the growth of P388 leukemia and IMC carcinoma. PMID:6358171

  19. Warming and increased precipitation frequency on the Colorado Plateau: Implications for biological soil crusts and soil processes

    SciTech Connect

    Zelikova TJ; Hosman DC; Grote EE; Neher DA; Belnap J

    2011-03-21

    Frequent hydration and drying of soils in arid systems can accelerate desert carbon and nitrogen mobilization due to respiration, microbial death, and release of intracellular solutes. Because desert microinvertebrates can mediate nutrient cycling, and the autotrophic components of crusts are known to be sensitive to rapid desiccation due to elevated temperatures after wetting events, we studied whether altered soil temperature and frequency of summer precipitation can also affect the composition of food web consumer functional groups. We conducted a two-year field study with experimentally-elevated temperature and frequency of summer precipitation in the Colorado Plateau desert, measuring the change in abundance of nematodes, protozoans, and microarthropods. We hypothesized that microfauna would be more adversely affected by the combination of elevated temperature and frequency of summer precipitation than either effect alone, as found previously for phototrophic crust biota. Microfauna experienced normal seasonal fluctuations in abundance, but the effect of elevated temperature and frequency of summer precipitation was statistically non-significant for most microfaunal groups, except amoebae. The seasonal increase in abundance of amoebae was reduced with combined elevated temperature and increased frequency of summer precipitation compared to either treatment alone, but comparable with control (untreated) plots. Based on our findings, we suggest that desert soil microfauna are relatively more tolerant to increases in ambient temperature and frequency of summer precipitation than the autotrophic components of biological soil crust at the surface.

  20. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1983

    1983-01-01

    Describes laboratory procedures, demonstrations, and classroom activities/materials, including chi-square tests on a microcomputer, an integrated biology game, microscope slides of leaf stomata, culturing soil nematodes, technique for watering locust egg-laying tubes, hazards of biological chemicals (such as benzene, benzidene, calchicine,

  1. Biology Notes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    School Science Review, 1983

    1983-01-01

    Describes laboratory procedures, demonstrations, and classroom activities/materials, including chi-square tests on a microcomputer, an integrated biology game, microscope slides of leaf stomata, culturing soil nematodes, technique for watering locust egg-laying tubes, hazards of biological chemicals (such as benzene, benzidene, calchicine,…

  2. Do biotic interactions modulate ecosystem functioning along stress gradients? Insights from semi-arid plant and biological soil crust communities

    PubMed Central

    Maestre, Fernando T.; Bowker, Matthew A.; Escolar, Cristina; Puche, Mara D.; Soliveres, Santiago; Maltez-Mouro, Sara; Garca-Palacios, Pablo; Castillo-Monroy, Andrea P.; Martnez, Isabel; Escudero, Adrin

    2010-01-01

    Climate change will exacerbate the degree of abiotic stress experienced by semi-arid ecosystems. While abiotic stress profoundly affects biotic interactions, their potential role as modulators of ecosystem responses to climate change is largely unknown. Using plants and biological soil crusts, we tested the relative importance of facilitativecompetitive interactions and other community attributes (cover, species richness and species evenness) as drivers of ecosystem functioning along stress gradients in semi-arid Mediterranean ecosystems. Biotic interactions shifted from facilitation to competition along stress gradients driven by water availability and temperature. These changes were, however, dependent on the spatial scale and the community considered. We found little evidence to suggest that biotic interactions are a major direct influence upon indicators of ecosystem functioning (soil respiration, organic carbon, water-holding capacity, compaction and the activity of enzymes related to the carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus cycles) along stress gradients. However, attributes such as cover and species richness showed a direct effect on ecosystem functioning. Our results do not agree with predictions emphasizing that the importance of plantplant interactions will be increased under climate change in dry environments, and indicate that reductions in the cover of plant and biological soil crust communities will negatively impact ecosystems under future climatic conditions. PMID:20513714

  3. Biological and chemical tests of contaminated soils to determine bioavailability and environmentally acceptable endpoints (EAE)

    SciTech Connect

    Montgomery, C.R.; Menzie, C.A.; Pauwells, S.J.

    1995-12-31

    The understanding of the concept of bioavailability of soil contaminants to receptors and its use in supporting the development of EAE is growing but still incomplete. Nonetheless, there is increased awareness of the importance of such data to determine acceptable cleanup levels and achieve timely site closures. This presentation discusses a framework for biological and chemical testing of contaminated soils developed as part of a Gas Research Institute (GRI) project entitled ``Environmentally Acceptable Endpoints in Soil Using a Risk Based Approach to Contaminated Site Management Based on Bioavailability of Chemicals in Soil.`` The presentation reviews the GRI program, and summarizes the findings of the biological and chemical testing section published in the GRI report. The three primary components of the presentation are: (1) defining the concept of bioavailability within the existing risk assessment paradigm, (2) assessing the usefulness of the existing tests to measure bioavailability and test frameworks used to interpret these measurements, and (3) suggesting how a small selection of relevant tests could be incorporated into a flexible testing scheme for soils to address this issue.

  4. Correlation between biological and physical availabilities of phenanthrene in soils and soil humin in aging experiments

    SciTech Connect

    White, J.C.; Hunter, M.; Nam, K.; Pignatello, J.J.; Alexander, M.

    1999-08-01

    The bioavailability of an organic compound in a soil or sediment commonly declines with the soil-chemical contact time (aging). A series of parallel desorption and bioavailability experiments was carried out on phenanthrene previously aged up to {approximately}100 d in Mount Pleasant silt loam (Mt. Pleasant, NY, USA) or Pahokee peat soil to determine as a function of the aging period the degree of correlation between the reduction in bioavailability and the rate and extent of desorption and the influence of soil organic matter composition on availability. The mineralization of phenanthrene by two bacteria and the uptake of phenanthrene by earthworms showed expected declines with aging. Likewise, the rate of phenanthrene desorption in the absence of organisms decreased with aging. The decline in initial rate of mineralization or desorption was nearly an order of magnitude after 50 to 60 d of aging. Plots of normalized rates of mineralization or desorption practically coincided. Similarly, plots of normalized fraction mineralized or fraction desorbed during an arbitrary period gave comparable slopes. The partial removal of organic matter from the peat by extraction with dilute NaOH to leave the humin fraction reduced the biodegradation of phenanthrene aged for 38 and 63 d as compared to the nonextracted peat, but the effect disappeared at longer incubation times. The rate of desorption from samples of peat previously extracted with NaOH or Na{sub 4}P{sub 2}O{sub 7} declined with aging and, for a given aging period, was significantly slower than from nonextracted peat. This work shows that the reduction in bioavailability of phenanthrene over time in soil is directly correlated with reduction of its physical availability due to desorption limitations. In addition, this study shows that removal of extractable humic substances leads to a decline in the rate of desorption and in the bioavailability of the substrate.

  5. Methods of increasing secretion of polypeptides having biological activity

    SciTech Connect

    Merino, Sandra

    2015-04-14

    The present invention relates to methods for producing a secreted polypeptide having biological activity, comprising: (a) transforming a fungal host cell with a fusion protein construct encoding a fusion protein, which comprises: (i) a first polynucleotide encoding a signal peptide; (ii) a second polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of an endoglucanase or a portion thereof; and (iii) a third polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of a polypeptide having biological activity; wherein the signal peptide and at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase increases secretion of the polypeptide having biological activity compared to the absence of at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase; (b) cultivating the transformed fungal host cell under conditions suitable for production of the fusion protein; and (c) recovering the fusion protein, a component thereof, or a combination thereof, having biological activity, from the cultivation medium.

  6. Methods of increasing secretion of polypeptides having biological activity

    SciTech Connect

    Merino, Sandra

    2014-10-28

    The present invention relates to methods for producing a secreted polypeptide having biological activity, comprising: (a) transforming a fungal host cell with a fusion protein construct encoding a fusion protein, which comprises: (i) a first polynucleotide encoding a signal peptide; (ii) a second polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of an endoglucanase or a portion thereof; and (iii) a third polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of a polypeptide having biological activity; wherein the signal peptide and at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase increases secretion of the polypeptide having biological activity compared to the absence of at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase; (b) cultivating the transformed fungal host cell under conditions suitable for production of the fusion protein; and (c) recovering the fusion protein, a component thereof, or a combination thereof, having biological activity, from the cultivation medium.

  7. Methods of increasing secretion of polypeptides having biological activity

    SciTech Connect

    Merino, Sandra

    2014-05-27

    The present invention relates to methods for producing a secreted polypeptide having biological activity, comprising: (a) transforming a fungal host cell with a fusion protein construct encoding a fusion protein, which comprises: (i) a first polynucleotide encoding a signal peptide; (ii) a second polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of an endoglucanase or a portion thereof; and (iii) a third polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of a polypeptide having biological activity; wherein the signal peptide and at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase increases secretion of the polypeptide having biological activity compared to the absence of at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase; (b) cultivating the transformed fungal host cell under conditions suitable for production of the fusion protein; and (c) recovering the fusion protein, a component thereof, or a combination thereof, having biological activity, from the cultivation medium.

  8. Methods of increasing secretion of polypeptides having biological activity

    SciTech Connect

    Merino, Sandra

    2013-10-01

    The present invention relates to methods for producing a secreted polypeptide having biological activity, comprising: (a) transforming a fungal host cell with a fusion protein construct encoding a fusion protein, which comprises: (i) a first polynucleotide encoding a signal peptide; (ii) a second polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of an endoglucanase or a portion thereof; and (iii) a third polynucleotide encoding at least a catalytic domain of a polypeptide having biological activity; wherein the signal peptide and at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase increases secretion of the polypeptide having biological activity compared to the absence of at least the catalytic domain of the endoglucanase; (b) cultivating the transformed fungal host cell under conditions suitable for production of the fusion protein; and (c) recovering the fusion protein, a component thereof, or a combination thereof, having biological activity, from the cultivation medium.

  9. Synthesis and biological activity of chloroethyl pyrimidine nucleosides.

    PubMed

    Colombeau, Ludovic; Teste, Karine; Hadj-Bouazza, Amel; Chaleix, Vincent; Zerrouki, Rachida; Kraemer, Michel; Catherine, Odile Sainte

    2008-02-01

    The synthesis and biological activity of chloroethyl pyrimidine nucleosides is presented. One of these new nucleosides analogues significantly inhibited cell proliferation, migration and invasion as tested in vitro on the A431 vulvar epidermal carcinoma cell line. PMID:18205066

  10. Multifunctional and biologically active matrices from multicomponent polymeric solutions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kiick, Kristi L. (Inventor); Yamaguchi, Nori (Inventor)

    2010-01-01

    The present invention relates to a biologically active functionalized electrospun matrix to permit immobilization and long-term delivery of biologically active agents. In particular the invention relates to a functionalized polymer matrix comprising a matrix polymer, a compatibilizing polymer and a biomolecule or other small functioning molecule. In certain aspects the electrospun polymer fibers comprise at least one biologically active molecule functionalized with low molecular weight heparin. Examples of active molecules that may be used with the multicomponent polymer of the invention include, for example, a drug, a biopolymer, for example a growth factor, a protein, a peptide, a nucleotide, a polysaccharide, a biological macromolecule or the like. The invention is further directed to the formation of functionalized crosslinked matrices, such as hydrogels, that include at least one functionalized compatibilizing polymer capable of assembly.

  11. Coumarin heterocyclic derivatives: chemical synthesis and biological activity.

    PubMed

    Medina, Fernanda G; Marrero, Joaqun G; Macas-Alonso, Mariana; Gonzlez, Magdalena C; Crdova-Guerrero, Ivn; Teissier Garca, Ariana G; Osegueda-Robles, Soraya

    2015-09-23

    This review highlights the broad range of science that has arisen from the synthesis of coumarin-linked and fused heterocycle derivatives. Specific topics include their synthesis and biological activity. PMID:26151411

  12. Biological activities of Croton palanostigma Klotzsch

    PubMed Central

    Mota, Eduardo Ferreira; Rosario, Diele Magno; Silva Veiga, Andreza Socorro; Brasil, Davi Do Socorro Barros; Silveira, Fernando Tobias; Dolabela, Maria Fâni

    2015-01-01

    Background: Different species of Croton are used in traditional Amazonian medicine. Among the popular uses are treatment of bacterial diseases, poorly healing wounds and fevers. Objective: This study evaluated the antileishmanial, antiplasmodial and antimicrobial activities of the extracts and diterpenes of Croton palanostigma Klotzsch (Euphorbiaceae). Materials and Methods: Leaves and bark were extracted with dichloromethane and methanol. The bark dichloromethane extract (BDE) was chromatographed on a column, obtaining cordatin and aparisthman. The extracts and diterpenes were assayed thought agar disk diffusion method and their bactericidal or fungicidal effects were evaluated by minimum bactericidal or fungicidal concentration. The antiplasmodial activity was evaluated after 24 and 72 h of exposition. The antileishmanial activity was performed on promastigotes forms of Leishmania amazonensis. Results: The bark methanol extract (BME) and cordatin were not active against any microbial strains tested; BDE and leaves methanol extract (LME) were positive for Pseudomonas aeruginosa and aparisthman was positive for Candida albicans. In the determination of the minimum bactericidal concentration, neither of them were active in the highest concentration tested. The extracts and diterpenes were inactive in Plasmodium falciparum, except the LME in 72 h. Any extract was shown to be active in promastigote forms of L. amazonensis. Conclusion: These results indicate that the BDE and LME did not inhibit the bacterial growth, then they probably had bacteriostatic effect. LME presented activity in P. falciparum. PMID:26246738

  13. Constituents and biological activities of Schinus polygamus.

    PubMed

    Erazo, Silvia; Delporte, Carla; Negrete, Rosa; García, Rubén; Zaldívar, Mercedes; Iturra, Gladys; Caballero, Esther; López, José Luis; Backhouse, Nadine

    2006-10-11

    The folk medicine employs Schinus polygamus to treat arthritic pain and cleansing of wounds. As no reports of pharmacological studies supporting its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, extracts of increasing polarity were assayed on the base of fever, pain and inflammation, together with its antimicrobial activity. All the extracts showed pharmacological activities. From the most active extracts different metabolites were isolated that can in part explain the antipyretic, anti-inflammatory, and analgesic activity: beta-sitosterol, shikimic acid together with quercetin, previously reported. Also, the essential oil of leaves and fruits was obtained and compared with the oil obtained from Schinus polygamus collected in Argentine. Oils differed in composition and in antibacterial activity, where the Chilean species exhibited a wide spectrum of activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, and the most abundant compound found in leaves and fruits was beta-pinene, meanwhile the Argentine species showed high activity against Bacillus cereus, and the main components resulted to be alpha-phellandrene and limonene. PMID:16713153

  14. The biological effects of solar activity.

    PubMed

    Breus, T K; Pimenov, K Yu; Cornlissen, G; Halberg, E; Syutkina, E V; Baevsky, R M; Petrov, V M; Orth-Gmer, K; Akerstedt, T; Otsuka, K; Watanabe, Y; Chibisov, S M

    2002-01-01

    The synchronization of biological circadian and circannual rhythms is broadly viewed as a result of photic solar effects. Evidence for non-photic solar effects on biota is also slowly being recognized. The ultrastructure of cardiomyocytes from rabbits, the time structure of blood pressure and heart rate of neonates, and the heart rate variability of human adults on earth and in space were examined during magnetically disturbed and quiet days, as were morbidity statistics. Alterations in both the about-daily (circadian) and about-weekly (circaseptan) components are observed during disturbed vs. quite days. The about-weekly period of neonatal blood pressure correlates with that of the local geomagnetic disturbance index K. Circaseptans which are seen early in human life and in various other forms of life, including unicells, may provide information about the possible site(s) of life's origins from an integrative as well as adaptive evolutionary perspective. PMID:12653180

  15. Physical activity and biological maturation: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    Bacil, Eliane Denise Araújo; Mazzardo, Oldemar; Rech, Cassiano Ricardo; Legnani, Rosimeide Francisco dos Santos; de Campos, Wagner

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To analyze the association between physical activity (PA) and biological maturation in children and adolescents. DATA SOURCE: We performed a systematic review in April 2013 in the electronic databases of PubMed/MEDLINE, SportDiscus, Web of Science and LILACS without time restrictions. A total of 628 potentially relevant articles were identified and 10 met the inclusion criteria for this review: cross-sectional or longitudinal studies, published in Portuguese, English or Spanish, with schoolchildren aged 9-15 years old of both genders. DATA SYNTHESIS: Despite the heterogeneity of the studies, there was an inverse association between PA and biological maturation. PA decreases with increased biological and chronological age in both genders. Boys tend to be more physically active than girls; however, when controlling for biological age, the gender differences disappear. The association between PA and timing of maturation varies between the genders. Variation in the timing of biological maturation affects the tracking of PA in early adolescent girls. This review suggests that mediators (BMI, depression, low self-esteem, and concerns about body weight) can explain the association between PA and biological maturation. CONCLUSIONS: There is an association between PA and biological maturation. PA decreases with increasing biological age with no differences between genders. As for the timing of biological maturation, this association varies between genders. PMID:25583624

  16. The impact of metal pollution on soil faunal and microbial activity in two grassland ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Boshoff, Magdalena; De Jonge, Maarten; Dardenne, Freddy; Blust, Ronny; Bervoets, Lieven

    2014-10-01

    In this study the influence of metal pollution on soil functional activity was evaluated by means of Bait lamina and BIOLOG() EcoPlates assays. The in situ bait lamina assay investigates the feeding activity of macrofauna, mesofauna and microarthropods while the BIOLOG() EcoPlate assay measures the metabolic fingerprint of a selectively extracted microbial community. Both assays proved sensitive enough to reveal changes in the soil community between the plots nearest to and further away from a metal pollution source. Feeding activity (FA) at the less polluted plots reached percentages of 90% while plots nearer to the source of pollution reached percentages as low as 10%. After 2 and 6 days of incubation average well color development (AWCD) and functional richness (R') were significantly lower at the plots closest to the source of pollution. While the Shannon Wiener diversity index (H') decreased significantly at sites nearer to the source of pollution after 2 days but not after 6 days of incubation. Arsenic, Cu and Pb correlated significantly and negatively with feeding activity and functional indices while the role of changing environmental factors such as moisture percentage could not be ruled out completely. Compared to the Bait lamina method that is used in situ and which is therefore more affected by site specific variation, the BIOLOG assay, which excludes confounding factors such as low moisture percentage, may be a more reliable assay to measure soil functional activity. PMID:25173048

  17. [Soil enzyme activities of limestone degraded ecosystem at its different restoration phases].

    PubMed

    He, Yuejun; Zhong, Zhangcheng; Liu, Jiming; Liu, Jinchun; Jin, Jing; Li, Qingyul

    2005-06-01

    The study showed that there was no distinct descending of enzyme activities along the soil profile of limestone degraded ecosystem, which were enhanced with progressive succession, and varied with vegetation characteristics, soil types, and soil enzyme properties. On the whole, soil enzyme activities enhanced in order of herb < Cupressuss funebris high forest< shrubbery, and under the same vegetation, limestone Cupressuss funebris high forest had higher soil enzyme activities than purple psammophytia. There was no significant correlation between soil enzyme activities and soil pH, while significant correlation was found between soil moisture content, soil total nitrogen content and soil enzyme activities, indicating that soil water and nutrient contents were the key factors of ecological restoration in this region. Different soil enzymes in the same vegetation-soil system as well as the same enzyme in the same soil type but at different restoration phases had different activities, so did for the same type vegetation but different soil type. PMID:16180757

  18. Arid soil microbial enzymatic activity profile as affected by geographical location and soil degradation status

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Evaluating soil health is critical for any successful remediation effort. Arid lands, with their minimal carbon and water contents, low nutritional status and restricted, seasonal microbial activity pose specific challenges to soil health restoration and by extension, restoration of ecosystem repr...

  19. Activated Sludge. Student Manual. Biological Treatment Process Control.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boe, Owen K.; Klopping, Paul H.

    This student manual contains the textual material for a seven-lesson unit on activated sludge. Topic areas addressed in the lessons include: (1) activated sludge concepts and components (including aeration tanks, aeration systems, clarifiers, and sludge pumping systems); (2) activated sludge variations and modes; (3) biological nature of activated…

  20. NASA's Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kellogg, Kent; Thurman, Sam; Edelstein, Wendy; Spencer, Michael; Chen, Gun-Shing; Underwood, Mark; Njoku, Eni; Goodman, Shawn; Jai, Benhan

    2013-01-01

    The SMAP mission will produce high-resolution and accurate global maps of soil moisture and its freeze/thaw state using data from a non-imaging synthetic aperture radar and a radiometer, both operating at L-band.

  1. The environmental biological signature: NGS profiling for forensic comparison of soils.

    PubMed

    Giampaoli, S; Berti, A; Di Maggio, R M; Pilli, E; Valentini, A; Valeriani, F; Gianfranceschi, G; Barni, F; Ripani, L; Romano Spica, V

    2014-07-01

    The identification of the source of a specific soil sample is a crucial step in forensic investigations. Rapid advances in next generation sequencing (NGS) technology and the strong reduction of the cost of sequencing have recently opened new perspectives. In the present work a metabarcoding approach has been successfully applied to forensic and environmental soil samples, allowing the accurate and sensitive analysis of microflora (mfDNA), plants, metazoa, and protozoa DNA. The identification of the biological component by DNA metabarcoding is a strong element for the discrimination of samples geologically very similar but coming for distinct environments. PMID:24807707

  2. MICROBIAL COMMUNITY STRUCTURE AND ENZYME ACTIVITIES IN SEMIARID AGRICULTURAL SOILS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effect of management on the microbial community structure and enzyme activities of three semiarid soils from Southern High Plains of Texas were investigated. The soils (sandy clay loam, fine sandy loam and loam) were under continuous cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) or in cotton -peanut (Arachis h...

  3. Measurements of microbial community activities in individual soil macroaggregates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The functional potential of single soil aggregates may provide insights into the localized distribution of microbial activities better than traditional assays conducted on bulk quantities of soil. Thus, we scaled down enzyme assays for ß-glucosidase, N-acetyl-ß-D-glucosaminidase, lipase, and leucine...

  4. MICROBIAL COMMUNITY STRUCTURE AND ENZYME ACTIVITIES IN SEMIARID AGRICULTURAL SOILS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effect of agricultural management practices on the microbial community structure and enzyme activities of semiarid soils of different textures in the Southern High Plains of Texas were investigated. The soils (sandy clay loam, fine sandy loam and loam) were under continuous cotton (Gossypium hir...

  5. Studying the Activities of Microorganisms in Soil Using Slides.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cullimore, D. Roy; Pipe, Annette E.

    1980-01-01

    Two implanted slide techniques are described by which activity of proteolylic bacteria and the growth of algae in the soil can be readily studied by school students using simple apparatus and methods. Variations are suggested for studying the effects of agricultural practices and environmental conditions on the soil bacteria and algae. (Author/DS)

  6. The Soil Moisture Active/Passive Mission (SMAP)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Soil Moisture Active/Passive (SMAP) mission will deliver global views of soil moisture content and its freeze/thaw state that are critical terrestrial water cycle state variables. Polarized measurements obtained with a shared antenna L-band radar and radiometer system will allow accurate estima...

  7. Activation energies and temperature effects from electrical spectra of soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Apparent permittivity often has soil-specific temperature responses as well as soil water responses. These variations affect dielectric sensors, often requiring site-specific calibrations. Variations of permittivity as a function of frequency and temperature can be used to calculate activation energ...

  8. Dynamic cyanobacterial response to hydration and dehydration in a desert biological soil crust.

    PubMed

    Rajeev, Lara; da Rocha, Ulisses Nunes; Klitgord, Niels; Luning, Eric G; Fortney, Julian; Axen, Seth D; Shih, Patrick M; Bouskill, Nicholas J; Bowen, Benjamin P; Kerfeld, Cheryl A; Garcia-Pichel, Ferran; Brodie, Eoin L; Northen, Trent R; Mukhopadhyay, Aindrila

    2013-11-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) cover extensive portions of the earth's deserts. In order to survive desiccation cycles and utilize short periods of activity during infrequent precipitation, crust microorganisms must rely on the unique capabilities of vegetative cells to enter a dormant state and be poised for rapid resuscitation upon wetting. To elucidate the key events involved in the exit from dormancy, we performed a wetting experiment of a BSC and followed the response of the dominant cyanobacterium, Microcoleus vaginatus, in situ using a whole-genome transcriptional time course that included two diel cycles. Immediate, but transient, induction of DNA repair and regulatory genes signaled the hydration event. Recovery of photosynthesis occurred within 1?h, accompanied by upregulation of anabolic pathways. Onset of desiccation was characterized by the induction of genes for oxidative and photo-oxidative stress responses, osmotic stress response and the synthesis of C and N storage polymers. Early expression of genes for the production of exopolysaccharides, additional storage molecules and genes for membrane unsaturation occurred before drying and hints at preparedness for desiccation. We also observed signatures of preparation for future precipitation, notably the expression of genes for anaplerotic reactions in drying crusts, and the stable maintenance of mRNA through dormancy. These data shed light on possible synchronization between this cyanobacterium and its environment, and provides key mechanistic insights into its metabolism in situ that may be used to predict its response to climate, and or, land-use driven perturbations. PMID:23739051

  9. Dynamic cyanobacterial response to hydration and dehydration in a desert biological soil crust

    PubMed Central

    Rajeev, Lara; da Rocha, Ulisses Nunes; Klitgord, Niels; Luning, Eric G; Fortney, Julian; Axen, Seth D; Shih, Patrick M; Bouskill, Nicholas J; Bowen, Benjamin P; Kerfeld, Cheryl A; Garcia-Pichel, Ferran; Brodie, Eoin L; Northen, Trent R; Mukhopadhyay, Aindrila

    2013-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSCs) cover extensive portions of the earth's deserts. In order to survive desiccation cycles and utilize short periods of activity during infrequent precipitation, crust microorganisms must rely on the unique capabilities of vegetative cells to enter a dormant state and be poised for rapid resuscitation upon wetting. To elucidate the key events involved in the exit from dormancy, we performed a wetting experiment of a BSC and followed the response of the dominant cyanobacterium, Microcoleus vaginatus, in situ using a whole-genome transcriptional time course that included two diel cycles. Immediate, but transient, induction of DNA repair and regulatory genes signaled the hydration event. Recovery of photosynthesis occurred within 1 h, accompanied by upregulation of anabolic pathways. Onset of desiccation was characterized by the induction of genes for oxidative and photo-oxidative stress responses, osmotic stress response and the synthesis of C and N storage polymers. Early expression of genes for the production of exopolysaccharides, additional storage molecules and genes for membrane unsaturation occurred before drying and hints at preparedness for desiccation. We also observed signatures of preparation for future precipitation, notably the expression of genes for anaplerotic reactions in drying crusts, and the stable maintenance of mRNA through dormancy. These data shed light on possible synchronization between this cyanobacterium and its environment, and provides key mechanistic insights into its metabolism in situ that may be used to predict its response to climate, and or, land-use driven perturbations. PMID:23739051

  10. Biologically active triterpenoids from Cephalaria ambrosioides.

    PubMed

    Pasi, Sofia; Aligiannis, Nektarios; Pratsinis, Harris; Skaltsounis, Alexios-Leandros; Chinou, Ioanna B

    2009-02-01

    The roots of Cephalaria ambrosioides yielded a new triterpene, 6alpha-hydroxyhederagenic acid ( 1), in addition to the known triterpene hederagenic acid ( 2) and four corresponding saponins, leontoside A (or akeboside Stb) ( 3), kalopanax saponin A (or alpha-hederin) ( 4), saponin PG (or sapindoside B) ( 5), and dipsacoside B ( 6). Their structures have been elucidated on the basis of their spectral data (MS, 1 D and 2 D NMR) and by some chemical transformations. The extract and all isolated compounds were evaluated for their antimicrobial, molluscicidal and IN VITRO cytotoxic activities. All compounds showed strong antimicrobial activity (MIC values 1.80 - 2.50 microg/mL), with 5 and 6 exhibiting activities comparable to those of standard antibiotics. Moreover, compounds 3 - 5 were active against all assayed cancer cell lines, whereas compounds 3 and 4 exhibited higher activities against Biomphalaria Glabrata snails, with minimum inhibitory concentrations of 5.4 and 6.2 microg/mL, respectively. PMID:19152225

  11. Relationship between insulin A chain regions and insulin biological activities

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Shi-Zhen; Huang, Yi-Ding; Jie, Xin-Feng; Feng, You-Min; Niu, Jing-Yi

    2000-01-01

    AIM: To study the relationship between insulin A chain regions and insulin biological activities, we designed a series of insulin analogues with changes at A21, A12-18 of C-terminal helical region and A8-10 located in the region of A6-A11 intra-chain disulphide bond. METHODS: Insulin A-chain analogues were prepared by stepwise Fmoc solid-phase manual synthesis and then combined with natural B-chain of porcine insulin to yield corresponding insulin analogues. Their biological activities were tested by receptor binding, mouse convulsion and immunological assay. RESULTS: [A21Ala]Ins retains 70.3% receptor binding capacity and 60% in vivo biological activity. [DesA13-14, A21Ala]Ins and [DesA12-13-14-15, A21Ala] Ins still have definite biological activity, 7.9% and 4.0% receptor binding, and 6.2% and 3.3% in vivo biological activity respectively. [A15Asn, A17Pro, A21Ala]Ins maintains 10.4% receptor binding and 10% in vivo biological activity. [A8His, A9Arg, A10Pro, A21Ala]Ins, [A8His, A9Lys, A10Pro, A21Ala]Ins and [A8His, A9Lys, A10Arg, A21Ala]Ins have 51.9%, 44.3% and 32.1% receptor binding respectively, 50%, 40% and 30% in vivo biological activity respectively, and 28.8%, 29.6% and 15.4% immunological activity respectively. CONCLUSION: A21Asn can be replaced by simple amino acid residues. The A chains with gradually damaged structur al integrity in A12-18 helical region and the demolition of the A12-18 helical region by the substitution of Pro and Asn for A17Glu and A15Gln respectively ca n combine with the B chain and the combination products show definite biological activity, the helical structure of A12-18 is essential for biological activities of insulin. A8-10 is not much concerned with biological activities, but is much more important antigenically in binding to its antibodies, these results may help us design a new type of insulin analogue molecule. PMID:11819600

  12. Synthesis and biological activity of digitoxigenin aminoesters.

    PubMed

    Valcavi, U; Caponi, R; Corsi, B; Innocenti, S; Martelli, P; Minoja, F

    1981-11-01

    A series of 3 beta-esters of digitoxigenin (3 beta-hydroxy-14 beta-hydroxy-5 beta-card-20(22)-enolide) with alpha-aminoacids, were synthesized and tested for inotropic activity on the guinea-pig isolated heart and by slow infusion in the cat in comparison with digitoxigenin, Lanatoside C and Strophantin K. Esterification of the 3 beta-hydroxy group of digitoxigenin with various amino acids led to compounds still retaining inotropic activity with low in vivo potency and short duration of action. The compounds are inactive when administered orally. PMID:7308463

  13. Biologically active compounds of semi-metals.

    PubMed

    Rezanka, Toms; Sigler, Karel

    2008-02-01

    Semi-metals (boron, silicon, arsenic and selenium) form organo-metal compounds, some of which are found in nature and affect the physiology of living organisms. They include, e.g., the boron-containing antibiotics aplasmomycin, borophycin, boromycin, and tartrolon or the silicon compounds present in "silicate" bacteria, relatives of the genus Bacillus, which release silicon from aluminosilicates through the secretion of organic acids. Arsenic is incorporated into arsenosugars and arsenobetaines by marine algae and invertebrates, and fungi and bacteria can produce volatile methylated arsenic compounds. Some prokaryotes can use arsenate as a terminal electron acceptor while others can utilize arsenite as an electron donor to generate energy. Selenium is incorporated into selenocysteine that is found in some proteins. Biomethylation of selenide produces methylselenide and dimethylselenide. Selenium analogues of amino acids, antitumor, antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, anti-infective drugs are often used as analogues of important pharmacological sulfur compounds. Other metalloids, i.e. the rare and toxic tellurium and the radioactive short-lived astatine, have no biological significance. PMID:17991498

  14. Modeling the variability in annual carbon fluxes related to biological soil crusts in a Mediterranean shrubland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilske, B.; Burgheimer, J.; Maseyk, K.; Karnieli, A.; Zaady, E.; Andreae, M. O.; Yakir, D.; Kesselmeier, J.

    2009-07-01

    Biological soil crusts (BSC) constitute a spatially prominent part of the photosynthesizing vegetation in many dryland ecosystems. This study assesses the annual net carbon deposition related to BSC growth in a Mediterranean shrubland for the years 2001-2003 using a model developed to account for the nature of hydration in the poikilohydric life trait of the BSC. Data for BSC-related net CO2 fluxes were obtained from in-situ measurements at the International Long-term Ecological Research site Sayeret Shaked (ILTER-SSK) in the northern Negev Desert, Israel. The BSC was smooth to rugose, up to 15 mm thick and consisted mainly of mosses, cyanobacteria and cyano-lichens. In order to obtain annual estimates, BSC-related CO2 fluxes were correlated with climate records provided by the meteorological station of the Terrestrial Ecosystem Monitoring Site network (TEMS) adjacent to SSK. The annual carbon deposition related to BSC growth was assessed from (1) an overall mean of net CO2 flux multiplied with annual activity periods of BSC based on precipitation records, and (2) from a simple precipitation-driven activity model (PdAM). This model combines an algorithm, previously developed to model gas exchange processes in vascular plants, with an empirical module that switches the algorithm on as soon as water is available to maintain activity of poikilohydric BSC. Based on a constant BSC area index of 0.6 m2 m-2 at ILTER-SSK, the final model suggests a large inter-annual variability in BSC-related net carbon deposition ranging from 7 to 51 kg ha-1 yr-1.

  15. Measurement of dinitrogen fixation by Biological soil crust (BSC) from the Sahelian zone: an isotopic method.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehrhardt, F.; Alavoine, G.; Bertrand, I.

    2012-04-01

    Amongst the described ecological roles of Biological Soil Crust, N fixation is of importance for soil fertility, especially in arid and semi-arid ecosystems with low inputs. In BSC, the quantification of N fixation fluxes using an indirect method is widespread, usually with the Acetylene Reduction Assay (ARA) which consists in measuring the nitrogenase activity through the process of acetylene reduction into ethylene. A converting factor, still discussed in the literature and greatly depending of the constitutive organisms of the BSC, is the tool used to convert the amount of reduced ethylene into quantitative fixed Nitrogen. The aim of this poster is to describe an isotopic direct method to quantify the atmospheric dinitrogen fixation fluxes in BSC, while minimizing the variability due to manipulations. Nine different BSC from the Sahelian zone were selected and placed in an incubation room at 28 C in dark and light conditions during three days, while moisture equivalent to pF=2 was regularly adjusted using the gravimetric method with needles and deionized water, in order to activate and reach a dynamic stability of their metabolisms. Subsequently, each crust was placed into a gas-tight glass vial for incubation with a reconstituted 15N2 enriched atmosphere (31.61 % atom 15N, while the proportion of each main gas present in the air was conserved, i.e. 78% N2, 21% O2 and 0.04% CO2). Principal difficulties are to guarantee the airtighness of the system, to avoid crust desiccation and to keep the crust metabolically active under stable conditions for six hours. Several tests were performed to determine the optimum time for 15N2 incubation. Three replicated control samples per crust were also stabilized for three days and then dried at 105 C, without any incubation with 15N2 enriched atmosphere. Total N and 15N were then measured in the grounded (80?m) and dried (105 C) crust, using a Flash EA elemental analyzer (Eurovector, Milan, Italy) coupled to a DeltaPlus Advantage mass spectrometer (Finnigan Thermo Fisher Scientific, Bremen, Germany). N2fixation fluxes were calculated from the difference between the amount of 15N in incubated and in control samples. Mean values ranged from 1.32.10-3 1.02.10-4 to 8.47.10-2 2.63.10-3 mgN.m-2.h-1. Concerning the variability, differences observed between crusts and between replicates are probably related to the characteristic of each crust as well as to field sampling which integrates the important heterogeneity and sensitivity of the material.

  16. Climate change and physical disturbance manipulations result in distinct biological soil crust communities.

    PubMed

    Steven, Blaire; Kuske, Cheryl R; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Reed, Sasha C; Belnap, Jayne

    2015-11-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) colonize plant interspaces in many drylands and are critical to soil nutrient cycling. Multiple climate change and land use factors have been shown to detrimentally impact biocrusts on a macroscopic (i.e., visual) scale. However, the impact of these perturbations on the bacterial components of the biocrusts remains poorly understood. We employed multiple long-term field experiments to assess the impacts of chronic physical (foot trampling) and climatic changes (2C soil warming, altered summer precipitation [wetting], and combined warming and wetting) on biocrust bacterial biomass, composition, and metabolic profile. The biocrust bacterial communities adopted distinct states based on the mechanism of disturbance. Chronic trampling decreased biomass and caused small community compositional changes. Soil warming had little effect on biocrust biomass or composition, while wetting resulted in an increase in the cyanobacterial biomass and altered bacterial composition. Warming combined with wetting dramatically altered bacterial composition and decreased Cyanobacteria abundance. Shotgun metagenomic sequencing identified four functional gene categories that differed in relative abundance among the manipulations, suggesting that climate and land use changes affected soil bacterial functional potential. This study illustrates that different types of biocrust disturbance damage biocrusts in macroscopically similar ways, but they differentially impact the resident soil bacterial communities, and the communities' functional profiles can differ depending on the disturbance type. Therefore, the nature of the perturbation and the microbial response are important considerations for management and restoration of drylands. PMID:26276111

  17. Climate change and physical disturbance manipulations result in distinct biological soil crust communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Steven, Blaire; Kuske, Cheryl R.; Gallegos-Graves, La Verne; Reed, Sasha C.; Belnap, Jayne

    2015-01-01

    Biological soil crusts (biocrusts) colonize plant interspaces in many drylands and are critical to soil nutrient cycling. Multiple climate change and land use factors have been shown to detrimentally impact biocrusts on a macroscopic (i.e., visual) scale. However, the impact of these perturbations on the bacterial components of the biocrusts remain poorly understood. We employed multiple long-term field experiments to assess the impacts of chronic physical (foot trampling) and climatic changes (2 °C soil warming, altered summer precipitation (wetting), and combined warming and wetting) on biocrust bacterial biomass, composition, and metabolic profile. The biocrust bacterial communities adopted distinct states based on the mechanism of disturbance. Chronic trampling decreased biomass and caused small community compositional change. Soil warming had little effect on biocrust biomass or composition, while wetting resulted in an increase in cyanobacterial biomass and altered bacterial composition. Warming combined with wetting dramatically altered bacterial composition and decreased cyanobacteria abundance. Shotgun metagenomic sequencing identified four functional gene categories that differed in relative abundance among the manipulations, suggesting that climate and land use changes affected soil bacterial functional potential. This study illustrates that different types of biocrust disturbance damage biocrusts in macroscopically similar ways, but they differentially impact the resident soil bacterial communities and the community functional profile can differ depending on the disturbance type. Therefore, the nature of the perturbation and the microbial response are important considerations for management and restoration of drylands.

  18. SMOS Soil moisture Cal val activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerr, Y.; Mialon, A.; Bitar, A. Al; Leroux, D.; Richaume, P.; Gruhier, C.; Berthon, L.; Novello, N.; Rudiger, C.; Bircher, S.; Wigneron, J. P.; Ferrazzoli, P.; Rahmoune, R.

    2012-04-01

    SMOS, successfully launched on November 2, 2009, uses an L Band radiometer with aperture synthesis to achieve a good spatial resolution.. It was developed and made under the leadership of the European Space Agency (ESA) as an Earth Explorer Opportunity mission. It is a joint program with the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) in France and the Centro para el Desarrollo Tecnologico Industrial (CDTI) in Spain. SMOS carries a single payload, an L band 2D interferometric,radiometer in the 1400-1427 MHz protected band. This wavelength penetrates well through the vegetation and with the atmosphere being almost transparent, it enables us to infer both soil moisture and vegetation water content. SMOS achieves an unprecedented spatial resolution of 50 km at L-band maximum (43 km on average) with multi angular-dual polarized (or fully polarized) brightness temperatures over the globe and with a revisit time smaller than 3 days. SMOS is now acquiring data and has undergone the commissioning phase. The data quality exceeds what was expected, showing very good sensitivity and stability. The data is however very much impaired by man made emission in the protected band, leading to degraded measurements in several areas including parts of Europe and China. Many different international teams are now performing cal val activities in various parts of the world, with notably large field campaigns either on the long time scale or over specific targets to address the specific issues. These campaigns take place in various parts of the world and in different environments, from the Antarctic plateau to the deserts, from rain forests to deep oceans. SMOS is a new sensor, making new measurements and paving the way for new applications. It requires a detailed analysis of the data so as to validate both the approach and the quality of the retrievals, and allow for monitoring and the evolution of the sensor. To achieve such goals it is very important to link efficiently ground measurement to satellite measurements through field campaigns and related airborne acquisitions. Comparison with models and other satellite products are necessary. It is in this framework that CESBIO has been involved with many groups to assess the data over many areas in close collaboration. This paper aims at summarising briefly the results (presented in detail in other presentations) to give a general overview and a general first taste of SMOS' performance, together with the identified gaps and next steps to be taken. This presentation could be the general introduction to Cal Val activities.

  19. Soil Properties, Nutrient Dynamics, and Soil Enzyme Activities Associated with Garlic Stalk Decomposition under Various Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Han, Xu; Cheng, Zhihui; Meng, Huanwen

    2012-01-01

    The garlic stalk is a byproduct of garlic production and normally abandoned or burned, both of which cause environmental pollution. It is therefore appropriate to determine the conditions of efficient decomposition, and equally appropriate to determine the impact of this decomposition on soil properties. In this study, the soil properties, enzyme activities and nutrient dynamics associated with the decomposition of garlic stalk at different temperatures, concentrations and durations were investigated. Stalk decomposition significantly increased the values of soil pH and electrical conductivity. In addition, total nitrogen and organic carbon concentration were significantly increased by decomposing stalks at 40°C, with a 5∶100 ratio and for 10 or 60 days. The highest activities of sucrase, urease and alkaline phosphatase in soil were detected when stalk decomposition was performed at the lowest temperature (10°C), highest concentration (5∶100), and shortest duration (10 or 20 days). The evidence presented here suggests that garlic stalk decomposition improves the quality of soil by altering the value of soil pH and electrical conductivity and by changing nutrient dynamics and soil enzyme activity, compared to the soil decomposition without garlic stalks. PMID:23226411

  20. Dynamics of soil organic carbon and microbial activity in treated wastewater irrigated agricultural soils along soil profiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jschke, Elisabeth; Marschner, Bernd; Chen, Yona; Tarchitzky, Jorge

    2010-05-01

    Treated wastewater (TWW) is an important source for irrigation water in arid and semiarid regions and already serves as an important water source in Jordan, the Palestinian Territories and Israel. Reclaimed water still contains organic matter (OM) and various compounds that may effect microbial activity and soil quality (Feigin et al. 1991). Natural soil organic carbon (SOC) may be altered by interactions between these compounds and the soil microorganisms. This study evaluates the effects of TWW irrigation on the quality, dynamics and microbial transformations of natural SOC. Priming effects (PE) and SOC mineralization were determined to estimate the influence of TWW irrigation on SOC along soil profiles of agricultural soils in Israel and the Westbank. The used soil material derived from three different sampling sites allocated in Israel and The Palestinian Authority. Soil samples were taken always from TWW irrigated sites and control fields from 6 different depths (0-10, 10-20, 20-30, 30-50, 50-70, 70-100 cm). Soil carbon content and microbiological parameters (microbial biomass, microbial activities and enzyme activities) were investigated. In several sites, subsoils (50-160 cm) from TWW irrigated plots were depleted in soil organic matter with the largest differences occurring in sites with the longest TWW irrigation history. Laboratory incubation experiments with additions of 14C-labelled compounds to the soils showed that microbial activity in freshwater irrigated soils was much more stimulated by sugars or amino acids than in TWW irrigated soils. The lack of such "priming effects" (Hamer & Marschner 2005) in the TWW irrigated soils indicates that here the microorganisms are already operating at their optimal metabolic activity due to the continuous substrate inputs with soluble organic compounds from the TWW. The fact that PE are triggered continuously due to TWW irrigation may result in a decrease of SOC over long term irrigation. Already now this could be detected at some agricultural fields by SOC measurements (Jschke 2009). Therefore attention has to be drawn especially on the carbon content and quality of the used TWW for irrigation purposes.

  1. Effects of tillage on the Fe oxides activation in soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chi, Guangyu; Chen, Xin; Shi, Yi; Wang, Jun; Zheng, Taihui

    2009-07-01

    Since mid-1950s, the wetland ecosystems in Sanjiang Plain of Northeast China have been experiencing greater changes in land use, which had negative effects on the soil environments. This study assessed the effects of soil tillage on the activation of soil Fe in the region. The test ecosystems included natural wetland, paddy field and upland field converted from wetland. Soil samples at the depths of 0-10 cm, 10-20 cm, 20-30 cm, 30-40 cm, 40-60 cm, 60-90 cm and 90-120 cm were collected from each of the ecosystems for the analysis of vertical distribution of soil pH, organic carbon, chelate Fe oxides and Fe(II). The results showed that the conversion of wetland into paddy field and upland field induced a decrease of organic carbon content in 0-10 cm soil layer by 61.8% (P <0.05) and 70.0% (P < 0.05), respectively. The correlations among iron forms and soil organic carbon showed that chelate Fe oxides and Fe(II) was correlated positively with soil organic carbon and chelate ratio had a more positive relationship with organic carbon than chelate Fe oxides and Fe(II). The results of chelate Fe oxides, Fe(II) and chelate ratio of Fe suggested that reclamation could prevent the Fe activation and organic matter is credited for having an important influence on the process of Fe activation.

  2. Soil Moisture Profile Estimation From Active Microwave Earth Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troch, P. A.; van Loon, E. E.

    This paper discusses the potential of retrieving information about the soil moisture profile from measurements of the surface soil moisture content through active mi- crowave observations of the Earth. In a series of laboratory experiments using multi- frequency radar observations of bare surfaces, Mancini et al. (1999) have shown that accurate surface soil moisture retrieval by means of C and L band active microwave observations is feasible. Hoeben and Troch (2000) combined active microwave obser- vations of the surface soil moisture content and 1D dynamic modeling of the unsat- urated zone in a data assimilation framework to show that this allows the retrieval of the root zone soil moiture profile. They showed that even in the presence of model and observation noise and infrequent observations, accurate retrieval of the entire soil moisture profile is possible for bare soil. Van Loon and Troch (2002) developed a ro- bust 4D data assimilation procedure applicable at the catchment scale. Their 4DDA is based on Tikhonov regularization or generalized cross-validation. Recently, this pro- cedure has been extended to operate in recursive mode, making the algorithm more general applicable for soil moisture data assimilation at the catchment scale. Possible applications of this algorithm in the context of ENVISAT ASAR instrument will be discussed.

  3. Biological activities of yarrow species (Achillea spp.).

    PubMed

    Nemeth, E; Bernath, J

    2008-01-01

    The genus Achillea consists of about 140 perennial herbs native to the Northern hemisphere. Traditional indications of their use include digestive problems, liver and gall-bladder conditions, menstrual irregularities, cramps, fever, wound healing. The Commission E approves its internal use for loss of appetite and dyspeptic ailments (gastric catarrh, spastic discomfort), externally it is used in form of sitz bath or as a compress against skin inflammation, slow healing wounds, bacterial or fungal infections. In the last decades, pharmacological studies became intensive, although human clinical investigations are still rare. Recent findings have confirmed several traditional uses. The largest number of data accumulated for antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. There are positive results on the analgesic, anti-ulcer, choleretic, hepatoprotective and wound healing activities. First results on other interesting therapeutical areas - antihypertensive, antidiabetic, antitumor, antispermatogenic activities -need confirmation. Yarrow can be used also as an insect repellent. Contact dermatitis as adverse effect may be connected to sesquiterpenes. The diversity and complexity of the effective compounds of yarrow species explains the broad spectrum of their activity. According to the literature the pharmacological effects are mainly due to the essential oil, proazulenes and other sesquiterpene lactones, dicaffeoylquinic acids and flavonoids. Synergistic actions of these and other compounds are also supposed. Achillea species have different chemical and therapeutical values. Despite of numerous data, correct evaluation of the results is difficult because of missing generally accepted taxonomical nomenclature. The used chemical-analytical methods and bio-assays are utmost diverse, making the comparison complicated. Further research on the activity is needed using exactly defined plant material, standardized methods and chemical analysis. PMID:19075697

  4. Isoxanthohumol--Biologically active hop flavonoid.

    PubMed

    ?o?nierczyk, Anna Katarzyna; M?czka, Wanda Krystyna; Grabarczyk, Ma?gorzata; Wi?ska, Katarzyna; Wo?niak, Edyta; Anio?, Miros?aw

    2015-06-01

    Isoxanthohumol (IXN), apart from xanthohumol (XN) and 8-prenylnaringenin (8PN), is one of the most important prenylflavonoids found in hops. Another natural source of this compound is a shrub Sophora flavescens, used in traditional Chinese medicine. Main dietary source of IXN is beer, and the compound is produced from XN during wort boiling. In the human body, the compound is O-demethylated to 8PN, the strongest known phytoestrogen. This process takes place in the liver and in the intestine, where it is mediated by local microflora. It has been reported in some studies that even though beer contains small amounts of hops and its preparations, these compounds may affect the functioning of the human body. IXN exhibits an antiproliferative activity against human cell lines typical for breast cancer (MCF-7), ovarian cancer (A-2780), prostate cancer (DU145 and PC-3), and colon cancer (HT-29 and SW620) cells. It strongly inhibits the activation of the following carcinogens: 2-amino-3-methylimidazol-[4,5-f]quinoline and aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) via human cytochrome P450 (CYP1A2). It also inhibits the production of prostate specific antigen (PSA). IXN significantly reduces the expression of transforming growth factor-? (TGF-?) in the case of invasive breast cancer MDA-MB-231. It interferes with JAK/STAT signaling pathway and inhibits the expression of pro1inflammatory genes in the monoblastic leukemia cell line (MonoMac6). It activates apoptosis in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) and human aortic smooth muscle cells (HASMCs). In addition, IXN shows an antiviral activity towards herpes viruses (HSV1 and HSV2) and bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV). PMID:25771121

  5. Physical aspects of biological activity and cancer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pokorn, Ji?

    2012-03-01

    Mitochondria are organelles at the boundary between chemical-genetic and physical processes in living cells. Mitochondria supply energy and provide conditions for physical mechanisms. Protons transferred across the inner mitochondrial membrane diffuse into cytosol and form a zone of a strong static electric field changing water into quasi-elastic medium that loses viscosity damping properties. Mitochondria and microtubules form a unique cooperating system in the cell. Microtubules are electrical polar structures that make possible non-linear transformation of random excitations into coherent oscillations and generation of coherent electrodynamic field. Mitochondria supply energy, may condition non-linear properties and low damping of oscillations. Electrodynamic activity might have essential significance for material transport, organization, intra- and inter-cellular interactions, and information transfer. Physical processes in cancer cell are disturbed due to suppression of oxidative metabolism in mitochodria (Warburg effect). Water ordering level in the cell is decreased, excitation of microtubule electric polar oscilations diminished, damping increased, and non-linear energy transformation shifted towards the linear region. Power and coherence of the generated electrodynamic field are reduced. Electromagnetic activity of healthy and cancer cells may display essential differences. Local invasion and metastastatic growth may strongly depend on disturbed electrodynamic activity. Nanotechnological measurements may disclose yet unknown properties and parameters of electrodynamic oscillations and other physical processes in healthy and cancer cells.

  6. Biologically active withanolides from Withania coagulans.

    PubMed

    Ihsan-ul-Haq; Youn, Ui Joung; Chai, Xingyun; Park, Eun-Jung; Kondratyuk, Tamara P; Simmons, Charles J; Borris, Robert P; Mirza, Bushra; Pezzuto, John M; Chang, Leng Chee

    2013-01-25

    Bioassay-directed isolation and purification of the crude extract of Withania coagulans, using two assays for cancer chemopreventive mechanisms, led to the isolation of three new steroidal lactones, withacoagulin G (1), withacoagulin H (2), and withacoagulin I (3), along with six known derivatives (4-9). The structures and absolute stereochemistry of these compounds were determined on the basis of spectroscopic analyses, including 1D and 2D NMR, mass spectrometry, and CD analyses. The structure of 1 was confirmed using X-ray diffraction methods. Compounds 1-9 inhibited nitric oxide production in lipopolysaccharide-activated murine macrophage RAW 264.7 cells with IC(50) values in the range of 1.9-38.2 μM. Compounds 1 and 2 were the most active (IC(50) 3.1 and 1.9 μM, respectively). Withanolides 1-9 exhibited inhibition of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α)-induced nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) activation with IC(50) values in the range of 1.60-12.4 μM. PMID:23316950

  7. Biological soil crusts are the main contributor to winter soil respiration in a temperate desert ecosystem of China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, M. Z.

    2012-04-01

    Aims Biological soil crusts (BSCs) are a key biotic component of desert ecosystems worldwide. However, most studies carried out to date on carbon (fluxes) in these ecosystems, such as soil respiration (RS), have neglected them. Also, winter RS is reported to be a significant component of annual carbon budget in other ecosystems, however, we have less knowledge about winter RS of BSCs in winter and its contribution to carbon cycle in desert regions. Therefore, the specific objectives of this study were to: (i) quantify the effects of different BSCs types (moss crust, algae crust, physical crust) on the winter RS; (ii) explore relationships of RS against soil temperature and water content for different BSCs, and (iii) assess the relative contribution of BSCs to the annual amount of C released by RS at desert ecosystem level. Methods Site Description The study sites are located at the southeast fringe of the Tengger Desert in the Shapotou region of the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region [37°32'N and 105°02'E, at 1340 m above mean sea level (a.m.s.l.)], western China. The mean daily temperature in January is -6.9°C , while it is 24.3°C in July. The mean annual precipitation is 186 mm, approximately 80% of which falls between May and September. The annual potential evaporation is 2800 mm. The landscape of the Shapotou region is characterized by large and dense reticulate barchans chains of sand dunes that migrate south-eastward at a velocity of 3-6 m per year. The soil is loose, infertile and mobile and can thus be classified as orthic sierozem and Aeolian sandy soil. Additionally, the soil has a consistent gravimetric water content that ranges from 3 to 4%. The groundwater in the study area is too deep (>60 m) to support large areas of the native vegetation cover; therefore, precipitation is usually the only source of freshwater. The predominant native plants are Hedysarum scoparium Fisch. and Agriophyllum squarrosum Moq., Psammochloa cillosa Bor, which scattered distribute with cover about 1% of the entire study area. Prior to revegetation, straw-checkerboards approximately 1×1 m2 in area were constructed using wheat or rice straw to stabilize the dune surface and allow time for the planted xerophytic shrubs to adapt to the new environment. In 1956, the following 2-year-old xerophytic shrub seedlings were planted within the checkerboard at a density of 16 individuals per 100 m2 and grown without irrigation: Artemisia ordosica Krasch, H. scoparium Fisch, Calligonum mongolicum Turc'z, Caragana microphylla Lam., Caragana korshinskii Kom, Salix gordejevii and Atraphaxis bracteata A.Los. The stabilized area was then expanded to parallel areas in 1964 and 1982 using the same method and species. As a result, the initial stages of change that have occurred at these sites were similar. After more than fifties years succession, the predominant plants are semi-shrubs, shrubs, forbs, and grasses at present and BSCs formed. The common BSCs in the region may be dominated by cyanobacteria, algae, lichens and mosses, or any combination of these organisms. Cyanobacteria species include Microcolous vaginatus Gom., Hydrocoleus violacens Gom., Lyngbya crytoraginatus Schk., Phormidium amblgum Gom., P. autumnale (Ag.) Gom., P. foveolarum (Mont.) Gom. and Phormidium luridum (Kutz) Gom. etc; algal species mainly include Anabaena azotica Ley, Euglena sp., Hantzschia amphioxys var capitata Grum, Oscillatoria obscura Gom., O. pseudogeminate G. Schm. And Scytonema javanicum (Kutz) Bornet Flash etc; lichen species include Collema tenax (Sw.) Ach., Endocarpon pusillum Hedw.; and moss species are dominated by Bryum argenteum Hedw., Didymodon constrictus (Mitt.) Saito., Tortula bidentata Bai Xue Liang and T. desertorum Broth.. Experimental Design and Rs measurements On October 2010, We selected the moss-dominated BSCs at four revegetation sites and natural vegetation sites, in which 3 replicated plots were selected randomly. In each plot, olyvinyl chloride (PVC) collar (lenth 10 cm, internal diameter 10cm ) were inserted 7 cm into the soil. During the establishment of PVC collars, each plot falling within distances less than 2.0 m of an existing replicate was discarded and reallocated to ensure a minimum distance between replicates of 2.0 m. Soil respiration was measured with a LI-6400 and a soil CO2 flux chamber (LI-6400-09). The target value was set close to the ambient CO2 concentration (~380μmolmol_1), and the ΔCO2 value was set as the factory default value (10μmolmol-1) (LiCor 1997). Thin-walled PVC collars were inserted at least one night (12h) before measurement so as to avert CO2 flushing, as recommended by LiCor (1997). Measurements were performed monthly between November 2010 (1months after the collars were inserted to avoid any bias promoted by soil alteration during the placement of collars) and March 2010. Diurnal Rs were measured every two hours from 8:00 to 6:00 of the next day. In parallel to the measurements of soil respiration, Measurements of soil respiration, soil moisture, and soil temperature were taken according to a stratified random design. Important findings (1) The RS was positively correlated to soil temperature in all BSCs, and was significantly influenced by the interactions of soil temperature and water content in moss, lichen and mixed BSCs. (2) The sensitivity of RS to soil temperature at 10cm depth (Q10) ranged from 1.25 in moss-dominated BSCs to 1.63 lichen-dominated BSCs. The Q10 tended to increase with soil temperature until reaching a threshold, and then decline. (3) Soil respiration rates remained low at night time and exhibited as single-peak curve at day time from April to October, and compare to the shifting sand area, a remarkable monthly variation occured in the BSCs dominated area. (4) The winter RS for the moss, lichen, and mixed BSCs averaged 102, 56 and 85 gCm-2 winter time_1, respectively. The winter RS was positively correlated to soil organic carbon (SOC) concentration at O horizon. Our results indicate that winter Rs of BSCs-dominated areas are the main contributor to the total carbon released by soil respiration and, therefore, which we should considered when estimating carbon budgets in desert ecosystems. Key words: Winter Soil Respiration; Biological Soil Crust (BSCs); Q10

  8. ACTIVE SOIL DEPRESSURIZATION (ASD) DEMONSTRATION IN A LARGE BUILDING

    EPA Science Inventory

    The report gives results of an evaluation of the feasibility of implementing radon resistant construction techniques -- especially active soil depressurization (ASD) -- in new large buildings in Florida. Indoor radon concentrations and radon entry were monitored in a finished bui...

  9. Microbial Diversity and Structure Are Drivers of the Biological Barrier Effect against Listeria monocytogenes in Soil

    PubMed Central

    Vivant, Anne-Laure; Garmyn, Dominique; Maron, Pierre-Alain; Nowak, Virginie; Piveteau, Pascal

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the ecology of pathogenic organisms is important in order to monitor their transmission in the environment and the related health hazards. We investigated the relationship between soil microbial diversity and the barrier effect against Listeria monocytogenes invasion. By using a dilution-to-extinction approach, we analysed the consequence of eroding microbial diversity on L. monocytogenes population dynamics under standardised conditions of abiotic parameters and microbial abundance in soil microcosms. We demonstrated that highly diverse soil microbial communities act as a biological barrier against L. monocytogenes invasion and that phylogenetic composition of the community also has to be considered. This suggests that erosion of diversity may have damaging effects regarding circulation of pathogenic microorganisms in the environment. PMID:24116193

  10. Biotoxicity assessment of pyrene in soil using a battery of biological assays.

    PubMed

    Khan, Muhammad Imran; Cheema, Sardar Alam; Tang, Xianjin; Shen, Chaofeng; Sahi, Shahbaz Talib; Jabbar, Abdul; Park, Joonhong; Chen, Yingxu

    2012-11-01

    A test battery, composed of a range of biological assays, was applied to evaluate the ecological health of soil aged for 69 days and spiked with a range of pyrene levels (1.04, 8.99, 41.5, 72.6, 136, and 399 ?g g(-1) dry soil; Soxhlet-extracted concentrations after 69 days of aging). Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa), earthworm (Eisenia fetida), and bacteria (Vibrio fischeri) were used as test organisms to represent different trophic levels. Among the acute ecotoxicity bioassays used, the V. fischeri luminescence inhibition assay was the most sensitive indicator of pyrene toxicity. We observed >8 % light inhibition at the lowest concentration (1.04 ?g g(-1)) pyrene, and this inhibition increased to 60 % at 72.6 ?g g(-1). The sensitivity ranking for toxicity of the pyrene-contaminated soil in the present study was in the following decreasing order: root elongation of Chinese cabbage < earthworm mortality (14 days) < earthworm mortality (28 days) < luminescence inhibition (15 min) < luminescence inhibition (5 min). In addition, genotoxic effects of pyrene were also evaluated by using comet assay in E. fetida. The strong relationship between DNA damage and soil pyrene levels showed that comet assay is suitable for testing the genotoxicity of pyrene-polluted soil. In addition, tail moment was well correlated with soil pyrene levels (r (2) = 0.99). Thus, tail moment may be the most informative DNA-damage parameter representing the results of comet assay. Based on these results, the earthworm DNA damage assay and Microtox test are rapid and sensitive bioassays and can be used to assess the risk of soil with low to high levels of hydrocarbon pollution. Furthermore, an analysis of the toxic effects at several trophic levels is essential for a more comprehensive understanding of the damage caused by highly contaminated soil. PMID:22941450

  11. Smectites versus palagonites in Mars soil: Evidence from simulations of Viking biology labeled release experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banin, A.; Margulies, L.

    1983-01-01

    The results of an experimental comparison between palagonites and a smectite (montmorillonite) in the simulation of the Viking Biology Labeled Release (LR) experiment and conclusions regarding their suitability as MarSAMs are reproved. It was found that palagonites do not cause formate decomposition and C-14 release in their natural form or after acidification and thus cannot be a completely satisfactory analog to the Mars soil studied by Viking.

  12. The biological activity of chernozems in the Central Caucasus Mountains (Terskii variant of altitudinal zonality), Kabardino-Balkaria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gedgafova, F. V.; Uligova, T. S.; Gorobtsova, O. N.; Tembotov, R. Kh.

    2015-12-01

    Some parameters of the biological activity (humus content; activity of hydrolytic enzymes invertase, phosphatase, urease; and the intensity of carbon dioxide emission) were studied in the chernozems of agrocenoses and native biogeocenoses in the foothills of the Caucasus Mountains representing the Terskii variant of the altitudinal zonality. The statistically significant differences were revealed between the relevant characteristics of the soils of the agrocenoses and of the native biogeocenoses. The integral index of the ecological-biological state of the soils was used to estimate changes in the biological activity of the arable chernozems. The 40-60% decrease of this index in the cultivated chernozems testified to their degradation with a decrease in fertility and the disturbance of ecological functions as compared to these characteristics in the virgin chernozems.

  13. Use of organic amendments as a bioremediation strategy to reduce the bioavailability of chlorpyrifos insecticide in soils. Effects on soil biology.

    PubMed

    Tejada, Manuel; Gmez, Isidoro; Del Toro, Marina

    2011-10-01

    The sorption capacity of both an organic municipal solid waste by-product (MSW) and a cow manure (CM) in a soil polluted with chlorpyrifos, as well as its effect on soil microbial activity, and weight, reproductive parameters and glutathione-S-transferase activity of two earthworm species (Eisenia fetida and Lumbricus terrestris) were studied. Chlorpyrifos was added at the recommended application rate (5 L ha(-1); 768 mg chlorpyrifos kg(-1)) and treated with MSW at a rate of 10% and CM at a rate of 5.8% in order to apply the same amount of organic matter to the soil. An unamended polluted soil was used as control. Earthworm cocoon number, average weight of cocoon, and number of juveniles per cocoon were measured after 30 days of incubation, whereas soil enzymatic activities, earthworm weight, and glutathione-S-transferase activity of earthworms were measured after 3, 45 and 90 days. Soil enzymatic activities, reproductive and glutathione-S-transferase activity in both worms decreased in polluted soil. The inhibition percentage of soil enzymatic activities, reproductive and glutathione-S-transferase activity in both worms was lower in MSW-amended soil than for CM-amended soil. The toxic effect of chlorpyrifos on E. fetida was lowest compared to L. terrestris. This suggested that the addition of organic wastes with higher humic than fulvic acid concentration is more beneficial for remediation of soils polluted with chlorpyrifos. PMID:21813178

  14. Soil microbial activities beneath Stipa tenacissima L. and in surrounding bare soil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novosadová, I.; Ruiz Sinoga, J. D.; Záhora, J.; Fišerová, H.

    2010-05-01

    Open steppes dominated by Stipa tenacissima L. constitute one of the most representative ecosystems of the semi-arid zones of Eastern Mediterranean Basin (Iberian Peninsula, North of Africa). These steppes show a higher degree of variability in composition and structure. Ecosystem functioning is strongly related to the spatial pattern of grass tussocks. Soils beneath S. tenacissima grass show higher fertility and improved microclimatic conditions, favouring the formation of "resource islands" (Maestre et al., 2007). On the other hand in "resource islands" and in surrounding bare soil exists the belowground zone of influence. The competition for water and resources between plants and microorganisms is strong and mediated trough an enormous variety of exudates and resource depletion intended to regulate soil microbial communities in the rhizosphere, control herbivory, encourage beneficial symbioses, and change chemical and physical properties in soil (Pugnaire et Armas, 2008). Secondary compounds and allelopathy restrict other species growth and contribute to patchy plant distribution. Active root segregation affects not only neighbourś growth but also soil microbial activities. The objective of this study was to assess the effect of Stipa tenacissima on the key soil microbial activities under controlled incubation conditions (basal and potential respiration; net nitrogen mineralization). The experimental plots were located in the province Almería in Sierra de los Filabres Mountains near the village Gérgal (southeast Spain) in the small catchment which is situated between 1090 - 1165 m a.s.l. The area with extent of 82 000 m2 is affected by soil degradation. The climate is semiarid Mediterranean. The mean annual rainfall is of about 240 mm mostly concentrated in autumn and spring. The mean annual temperature is 13.9° C. The studied soil has a loam to sandy clay texture and is classified as Lithosol (FAO-ISRIC and ISSS, 1998). The vegetation of these areas is an open steppe dominated by Stipa tenacissima. In February 2009 representative soil samples from the top 10 cm were taken beneath grass tussock and from bare soil. Soil samples in three replicates were incubated after rewetting with distilled water (basal microbial activities) and after rewetting with the glucose solution and with the mixture of glucose and peptone solution (potential microbial activities). The CO2, C2H4 evolved under controlled conditions (60% WHC, 24°C) during a 37-day aerobic incubation were determined. Ammonia and nitrate nitrogen were estimated in percolates after simulated rainfall (on the 16th day of incubation) and in the incubated soil samples at the end of incubation. Net ammonification and net nitrification rates were determined by subtracting initial soil mineral N from both mineral N in percolates plus final mineral N contents at 37th day. Basal, potential microbial respiration and net nitrification in the soils beneath S. tenacissima were, in general, not significantly different from the bare soils. The differences between plant-covered soil and bare soil in cumulative values of CO2 production and in amounts of accumulated NO3--N (net nitrification) were less than ± 10%. Greater differences were found in the net ammonification, which were higher beneath S. tenacissima, mainly in the control (basal activities) variant (about 38 %). Significantly less ethylene produced by microbial activity in soils beneath S. tenacissima after the addition of glucose indicates the dependence of rhizospheric microbial communities on available carbon compounds mainly from root exudates. It can be concluded, similarly as published Goberna et al., (2007), that the distribution of soil microbial properties in semi-arid Mediterranean ecosystems is not necessarily associated with the patchy plant distribution and that some microbial activities characteristics can be unexpectedly homogenous.

  15. Spatial variation in soil active-layer geochemistry across hydrologic margins in polar desert ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, J. E.; Gooseff, M. N.; Takacs-Vesbach, C.

    2009-12-01

    Polar deserts are characterized by severe spatial-temporal limitations of liquid water. In soil active layers of the Antarctic Dry Valleys, liquid water is infrequently available over most of the arid terrestrial landscape. However, soils on the margins of glacial melt-water streams and lakes are visibly wet during the brief Austral summer when temperatures permit the existence of liquid water. We examined the role of these hydrologic margins as preferential zones for the transformation and transport of nutrient elements and solutes in an environment where geochemical weathering and biological activity is strictly limited by the dearth of liquid water. We report on hydropedological investigations of aquatic-terrestrial transition zones adjacent to 11 stream and lake systems in the Antarctic Dry Valleys. Our results show that wetted zones extended 1-11 m from the edges of lotic and lentic systems. While capillary demand and surface evaporation drive a one-way flux of water through these zones, the scale of these transition zones is determined by the topography and physical characteristics of the surrounding soils. Nutrient concentrations and fluxes appear to be influenced by both the hydrology and microbial-mediated biogeochemical processes. Salt concentrations are enriched near the distal boundary of the wetted fronts due to evapo-concentration of pore water in lake margin soils, while organic matter, ammonium and phosphate concentrations are highest in stream channel sediments where potential for biological activity is greatest. Thus, in the Antarctic Dry Valleys, intermittently wet soils on the margins of streams and lakes are important zones of both geochemical cycling and biological activity.

  16. Spatial variation in soil active-layer geochemistry across hydrologic margins in polar desert ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barrett, J. E.; Gooseff, M. N.; Takacs-Vesbach, C.

    2009-05-01

    Polar deserts are characterized by severe spatial-temporal limitations of liquid water. In soil active layers of the Antarctic Dry Valleys, liquid water is infrequently available over most of the arid terrestrial landscape. However, soils and sediments on the margins of glacial melt-water streams and lakes are visibly wet during the brief Austral summer when temperatures permit the existence of liquid water. We examined the role of these hydrologic margins as preferential zones for the transformation and transport of nutrient elements and solutes in an environment where geochemical weathering and biological activity is strictly limited by the dearth of liquid water. We report on hydropedological investigations of aquatic-terrestrial transition zones adjacent to 11 stream and lake systems in the Antarctic Dry Valleys. Our results show that wetted zones extended 1-11 m from the edges of lotic and lentic systems. While capillary demand and surface evaporation drive a one-way flux of water through these zones, the scale of these transition zones is determined by the topography and physical characteristics of the surrounding soils. Nutrient concentrations and fluxes appear to be influenced by both the hydrology and microbial-mediated biogeochemical processes. Salt concentrations are enriched near the distal boundary of the wetted fronts due to evapo-concentration of pore water in lake margin soils, while organic matter, ammonium and phosphate concentrations are highest in stream channel sediments where potential for biological activity is greatest. Thus, in the Antarctic Dry Valleys, intermittently wet soils on the margins of streams and lakes are important zones of both geochemical cycling and biological activity.

  17. How strong are biological soil crusts as sinks for atmospheric CO2?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jasoni, R. L.; Larsen, J. D.; Fenstermaker, L. F.; Arnone, J.

    2010-12-01

    In parts of the Mojave Desert, biological soil crusts (BSCs) can cover as much as 70% of the soil surface. Environmental factors such as temperature and rainfall can have a significant effect on BSC activity. To quantify the effects of simulated rainfall during different times of the year on CO2 exchange between crust-covered soil surfaces and the atmosphere, we installed sixteen 45 cm diameter plots circumscribed with a 10 cm high PVC ring. Ten of the plots received a water pulse in the morning (daytime) of the second day of each 3-4 day series of flux measurements, three of the plots received a water pulse in the evening of the second day of each 3-4 day series of measurements, and three plots did not receive a water pulse (one series of measurements in February 2008 - cool season, one series of measurements in May 2008 - warm season). A pulse of 10 mm of water was chosen to approximate a typical cool season rain pulse as well as a pulse typical of a convective summer storm. Each pulse was applied in two 5 mm applications during one hour. Results of our experiment show several ecologically compelling patterns. During dry periods, CO2 fluxes were generally positive, or toward the atmosphere from the surface, representing a net emission/loss from the soil. In February, the daytime rain pulse immediately stimulated crust greening and a net CO2 uptake by the surface in most plots. Fluxes in the non-pulsed, or yet-to-be pulsed (i.e., nighttime-pulsed), plots continued to exhibit net CO2 emission. The stimulatory effect on CO2 fluxes were maintained during the following day and remained above (more negative) uptake rates measured before the rain pulse. The decline in net CO2 uptake by the fourth day of the series corresponded with decreases in crust surface greenness. Plots pulsed with rain at night in February showed no immediate change in net CO2 flux or in net daytime flux on the day following the nighttime water pulse. Mean flux rate returned to pre-rain pulse levels by the fourth day in the series. In contrast, the May daytime rain pulse immediately stimulated crust greening; however, the effect was a rapid stimulation of net CO2 release to the atmosphere in all plots. After a nighttime pulse, rates of net CO2 release increased as a result of the water. In plots pulsed during the day in May, the stimulatory effect of water on net CO2 release was still apparent during the following day, but it was significantly reduced from rates measured the day before. Results from our experiment clearly demonstrate that the physiological activity of BSCs present at our Mojave Desert site depend strongly on availability of water, as others have also shown, but with modulating influences of temperature and photon flux density apparent when comparing season and time of day, respectively.

  18. [Effects of Different Land Uses on Soil Active Organic Carbon and Nitrogen Fractions in Jinyun Mountain].

    PubMed

    Qi, Xin; Jiang, Chang-sheng; Hao, Qing-ju; Li, Jian-lin

    2015-10-01

    Abstract: In this paper, we take Jinyun Mountain where located in Beibei district of Chongqing as the research object and explore the effect of different ways of land use on soil active organic carbon, nitrogen components by collecting the soil samples from 0 to 60 cm depth in subtropical evergreen broad-leaved forest (hereinafter referred to as the forest), abandoned land, orchard, farmland and measuring the content of MBC, MBN, DOC and DON. The research results show that the contents of soil MBC, MBN, DOC, DON are reduced with the increase of soil depth in four types of land using soils. Variance analysis of the single factor shows that four kinds of land uses have no significant difference in the contents of MBC, MBN and DON, but the DOC content of the abandoned land is significantly higher than that of other three kinds. It shows that the different ways of land use have no obvious effects on soil MBC, MBN and DON but the abandonment of slope cropland can significantly increase the content of soil DOC. There is no significant difference among the distribution ratio of MBN, DOC, DON in forest, abandoned land, orchard and farmland within the soil from 0 to 60 cm, but the distribution ratio of slope MBC is significantly higher than that of other three kinds. It means farmland soil organic carbon has a higher biological activity, this could due to the application of green manure, farmland manure and other organic fertilizers. Under different land utilizations, DOC/DON is the highest, MBC/MBN is the second, and SOC/TN is the lowest. It means the biological solidification of dissolved organic matter is the strongest, and the mineralization of soil organic matter is the most obvious. Under the four kinds of land uses, there are the lowest ratios in SOC/TN, MBC/MBN and DOC/DON in the farmland. And all the ratios are less than 20, which suggest that the mineralization of farmland soil organic matter is stronger and it's easy to cause the loss of soil carbon. PMID:26841617

  19. Comparison of reactor designs for biological ex-situ soil treatment

    SciTech Connect

    Potter, C.; Haught, R.

    1995-10-01

    The goal of this project is to evaluate the potential of biological ex-situ soil treatment systems to remediate soils contaminated with hazardous chemicals. A laminar-type flow pilot-scale reactor with volume of 3 cu. yd has been constructed at EPA`s Test & Evaluation J&D Facility in Cincinnati. Laminar-type flow from one side of the reactor to the other may provide even aeration to all areas of the reactor while avoiding the use of pipes inside the reactor. This design greatly facilitates loading and unloading the reactor and is readily scalable to larger systems. Passing smoke through the reactor for visual observation of flow indicated uniform flow in the empty reactor. Further testing involves filling the reactor with vermiculite, flushing with Argon, and then passing air through the reactor at about 1 volume change per day to evaluate air flow through this uniform solid matrix. Oxygen probes, located at 27 positions within the reactor, provide information on air progression through the system. Analysis of gas flow through an empty reactor and through a uniform matrix (vermiculite) allows separation of reactor flaws from soil inhomogeneities as causes of any nonuniform aeration of the reactor space. Soil contaminated with polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) from The Reilly Tar Pit Superfund Site in St. Louis Park, MN has been shipped under the small quantity treatability exemption to the T&E Facility for research on soil aeration and effectiveness of this ex-situ reactor design for biological treatment of contaminated soils.

  20. The validation of forensic DNA extraction systems to utilize soil contaminated biological evidence.

    PubMed

    Kasu, Mohaimin; Shires, Karen

    2015-07-01

    The production of full DNA profiles from biological evidence found in soil has a high failure rate due largely to the inhibitory substance humic acid (HA). Abundant in various natural soils, HA co-extracts with DNA during extraction and inhibits DNA profiling by binding to the molecular components of the genotyping assay. To successfully utilize traces of soil contaminated evidence, such as that found at many murder and rape crime scenes in South Africa, a reliable HA removal extraction system would often be selected based on previous validation studies. However, for many standard forensic DNA extraction systems, peer-reviewed publications detailing the efficacy on soil evidence is either lacking or is incomplete. Consequently, these sample types are often not collected or fail to yield suitable DNA material due to the use of unsuitable methodology. The aim of this study was to validate the common forensic DNA collection and extraction systems used in South Africa, namely DNA IQ, FTA elute and Nucleosave for processing blood and saliva contaminated with HA. A forensic appropriate volume of biological evidence was spiked with HA (0, 0.5, 1.5 and 2.5 mg/ml) and processed through each extraction protocol for the evaluation of HA removal using QPCR and STR-genotyping. The DNA IQ magnetic bead system effectively removed HA from highly contaminated blood and saliva, and generated consistently acceptable STR profiles from both artificially spiked samples and crude soil samples. This system is highly recommended for use on soil-contaminated evidence over the cellulose card-based systems currently being preferentially used for DNA sample collection. PMID:25690910

  1. Local knowledge and perception of biological soil crusts by land users in the Sahel (Niger)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    J-M Ambouta, K.; Hassan Souley, B.; Malam Issa, O.; Rajot, J. L.; Mohamadou, A.

    2012-04-01

    Local knowledge, i.e. knowledge based on accumulation of observations is of great interest for many scientific fields as it can help for identification, evaluation and selection of relevant indicators and furthermore for progress through conservation goals. This study aimed at gathering and understanding the local knowledge and perception of biological soil crusts (BSC) by users of land, pastoralists that cross the Sahel and sedentary farmers. The methodological approach is based on a semi-direct surveys conducted on a north-south rainfall gradient (350 to 650 mm/year) including agricultural- and pastoral-dominated areas in western Niger. Denomination, formation processes, occurrence, distribution and role of biological soil crusts are among the major issues of the inquiry. The results of the surveys showed that BSC are mainly identified by the names of "Bankwado" and "Korobanda", respectively in hausa and zarma langages, what means "toad back". Other denominations varying according to region, ethnic groups and users are used. They are all related to the aspects, colors and behaviour of BSC with regard wetting and drying cycle. From the point of view of users depressed areas and land lied fallow are favourable places for the occurrence of BSC, while cultivation and observed changes in rainfall regimes represent negative factors. The formation processes of BSC are mainly related to the occurrence and the impact of rain and wind on soil surface. Their roles in protecting soil against degradation or as an indicator of soil fertility were recognised by at least 83% of farmers and breeders. This study reveals significant aspects of BSC already validated by scientific knowledge. Integrating the two forms of knowledge will help to define relevant indicators of soil surface dynamics and to perform practices to minimize farming and grazing impacts on BSCs.

  2. Controls of biological soil crust cover and composition shift with succession in sagebrush shrub-steppe

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dettweiler-Robinson, E.; Bakker, J.D.; Grace, J.B.

    2013-01-01

    Successional stage may determine strength and causal direction of interactions among abiotic and biotic factors; e.g., species that facilitate the establishment of other species may later compete with them. We evaluated multivariate hypotheses about abiotic and biotic factors shaping biological soil crusts (BSCs) in early and late successional stages. We surveyed vegetation and BSC in the shrub-steppe ecosystem of the Columbia Basin. We analyzed the relationships with bryophyte and lichen covers using structural equation models, and analyzed the relationships with BSC composition using Indicator Species Analysis and distance-based linear models. Cover, indicator species, and composition varied with successional stage. Increasing elevation and bryophyte cover had higher lichen cover early in succession; these relationships were negative in the later successional stage. Lichen cover did not appear to impede B. tectorum cover, but B. tectorum appeared to strongly negatively affect lichen cover in both stages. Biological soil crust composition varied with bunchgrass cover in the early successional stage, but with elevation and B. tectorum cover later in succession. Our findings support the hypotheses that as succession progresses, the strength and direction of certain community interactions shift, and B. tectorum leads to reductions in biological soil crust cover regardless of successional stage.

  3. Biosynthesis, Synthesis and Biological Activities of Pyrrolobenzodiazepines

    PubMed Central

    Gerratana, Barbara

    2014-01-01

    Pyrrolobenzodiazepines (PBDs) are sequence selective DNA alkylating agents with remarkable antineoplastic activity. They are either naturally produced by actinomycetes or synthetically produced. The remarkable broad spectrum of activities of the naturally produced PBDs encouraged the synthesis of several PBDs, including dimeric and hybrid PBDs yielding to an improvement in the DNA binding sequence specificity and in the potency of this class of compounds. However, limitation in the chemical synthesis prevented the testing of one of the most potent PBDs, sibiromycin, a naturally produced glycosylated PBDs. Only recently the biosynthetic gene clusters for PBDs have been identified opening the doors to the production of glycosylated PBDs by mutasynthesis and biosynthetic engineering. The present review describes the recent studies on the biosynthesis of naturally produced pyrrolobenzodiazepines. In addition, it provides an overview on the isolation and characterization of naturally produced PBDs, on the chemical synthesis of PBDs, on the mechanism of DNA alkylation, and on the DNA binding affinity and cytotoxic properties of both naturally produced and synthetic pyrrolobenzodiazepines. PMID:20544978

  4. Biologically active insulin-derived peptides.

    PubMed

    Fawcett, Janet

    2014-06-01

    Insulin has many actions within cells many of which are dependent on the cell type. For example, insulin stimulates glucose uptake in adipose tissue and skeletal muscle but not in liver. In liver glucose influx will increase as insulin stimulates the phosphorylation of glucose and eventual storage in the form of glycogen. Insulin also increases glucose oxidation, decreases glucose production, decreases lipolysis, increases protein synthesis and inhibits protein degradation in addition to others. Many actions have been related to insulin binding to its receptor and subsequent phosphorylation cascades, but insulin action on protein degradation has been shown to be linked to insulin degradation, specifically insulin degradation by the insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE). This activity has been shown to be due to an interaction of IDE with the proteasome, which is responsible for degradation of ubiquitin-tagged proteins. Smaller fragments of insulin that are produced by the action of IDE that do not bind to the insulin receptor show a small effect on protein degradation and a modest effect on mitogenesis. These small fragments do however inhibit lipolysis in a similar manner to insulin. If fragments are larger and can bind to the receptor they have been shown to increase glucose oxidation. Studies show that fragments of the insulin molecule have cellular activity, and that the varied actions of insulin are not completely controlled by insulin binding to the insulin receptor, even though the mechanisms may not be mutually exclusive. PMID:24559166

  5. Biological permeable reactive barriers coupled with electrokinetic soil flushing for the treatment of diesel-polluted clay soil.

    PubMed

    Mena, Esperanza; Ruiz, Clara; Villaseor, Jos; Rodrigo, Manuel A; Caizares, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Removal of diesel from spiked kaolin has been studied in the laboratory using coupled electrokinetic soil flushing (EKSF) and bioremediation through an innovative biological permeable reactive barriers (Bio-PRBs) positioned between electrode wells. The results show that this technology is efficient in the removal of pollutants and allows the soil to maintain the appropriate conditions for microorganism growth in terms of pH, temperature, and nutrients. At the same time, EKSF was demonstrated to be a very interesting technology for transporting pollutants, microorganisms and nutrients, although results indicate that careful management is necessary to avoid the depletion of nutrients, which are effectively transported by electro-migration. After two weeks of operation, 30% of pollutants are removed and energy consumption is under 70 kWh m(-3). Main fluxes (electroosmosis and evaporation) and changes in the most relevant parameters (nutrients, diesel, microorganisms, surfactants, moisture conductivity and pH) during treatment and in a complete post-study analysis are studied to give a comprehensive description of the most relevant processes occurring in the soil (pollutant transport and biodegradation). PMID:25262485

  6. Fate and activity of microorganisms introduced into soil.

    PubMed Central

    van Veen, J A; van Overbeek, L S; van Elsas, J D

    1997-01-01

    Introduced microorganisms are potentially powerful agents for manipulation of processes and/or components in soil. Fields of application include enhancement of crop growth, protection of crops against plant-pathogenic organisms, stimulation of biodegradation of xenobiotic compounds (bioaugmentation), and improvement of soil structure. Inoculation of soils has already been applied for decades, but it has often yielded inconsistent or disappointing results. This is caused mainly by a commonly observed rapid decline in inoculant population activity following introduction into soil, i.e., a decline of the numbers of inoculant cells and/or a decline of the (average) activity per cell. In this review, we discuss the available information on the effects of key factors that determine the fate and activity of microorganisms introduced into soil, with emphasis on bacteria. The factors addressed include the physiological status of the inoculant cells, the biotic and abiotic interactions in soil, soil properties, and substrate availability. Finally, we address the possibilities available to effectively manipulate the fate and activity of introduced microorganisms in relation to the main areas of their application. PMID:9184007

  7. A predictive model of spatial distribution of Biological Soil Crust in the Sahel from local to regional scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaugendre, N.; Chon, A.; Sannier, C.; Desprats, J. F.; Cerdan, O.; Valentin, C.; Malam Issa, O.; Rajot, J. L.

    2012-04-01

    The Sahel region in West Africa is highly vulnerable facing soil degradation due to the harsh climatic conditions, with variable rainfall, and high anthropic pressure on land use. In Sahel, as in other arid environments, biological soil crusts are present over a large area. The BIOCRUST project focuses on the use of BSC as an indicator of environmental quality in the context of climate change and human activities pressures and on providing useful informations for best management practices for the Sahelian environment. To this end, a characterisation of BSC is required first at a local level based on the use of Very High Resolution satellite imagery. Two detailed field campaigns were undertaken to identify key variables indicative of the presence of biological soil crusts. A Statistic analysis ascertained that vegetation cover, land use, soil types and rainfall were the most significant variables to consider. From these, a predictive model of the spatial distribution of BSC was developed, based on a logistic regression. The extraction of the variables from the satellite imagery makes it possible to run the prediction model for 2 catchment areas of about 50km2 each situated in Niger on a North South transect. With a view to apply the prediction model to the central part of the Sahel scale, the same methodology was used with Medium Resolution satellite imagery and field data collected on a North South transect in Niger and Burkina Faso. Preliminary results indicate that the model is applicable at regional scale and show the potential spatial distribution of BSCs over a large portion of the Central part of the Sahel region.

  8. Changes in the cellulolytic activity of urban soils induced by the removal of plant litter (using Moscow as an example)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ivanova, A. E.; Nikolaeva, V. V.; Marfenina, O. E.

    2015-05-01

    The parameters of the biological activity in the upper horizons of an urban soil in Tushino (the northwestern administrative district of Moscow) without the litter horizon because of the regular removal of the plant litter and an undisturbed background Albic Retisol with the litter horizon were compared. In the studied soils, the levels and dynamics of the cellulolytic activity were comparable and generally increased from the spring to the fall seasons. This increase was more pronounced in the urban soil during the leaf fall. The seasonal dynamic of the CO2 emission in the urban soil (upon its moistening) was similar to that in the background soil, though the absolute values were significantly lower in the summer and fall seasons. The method of substrate-induced respiration (SIR) showed that the rise in the CO2 emission in response to the addition of cellulose in the urban soil was 1.5-2.0 times lower than that in the background soil. The increase in the cellulolytic activity upon the application of lime leaves ( Tilia cordata Mill.) in the uppermost 5 mm of the urban soil (immediately under the leaves) was also less pronounced than that in the natural background soil. At the same time, the increase in the CO2 emission upon the addition of cellulose into this layer was more pronounced and continued for a longer time in the urban soil.

  9. Transport of biologically active material in laser cutting.

    PubMed

    Frenz, M; Mathezloic, F; Stoffel, M H; Zweig, A D; Romano, V; Weber, H P

    1988-01-01

    The transport of biologically active material during laser cutting with CO2 and Er lasers is demonstrated. This transport mechanism removes particles from the surface of gelatin, agar, and liver samples into the depth of the laser-formed craters. The transport phenomenon is explained by a contraction and condensation of enclosed hot water vapor. We show by cultivating transported bacteria in agar that biological particles can survive the shock of the transport. Determination of the numbers of active cells evidences a more pronounced activity of the cultivated bacteria after impact with an Er laser than with a CO2 laser. PMID:3062290

  10. Biologically active extracts with kidney affections applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pascu (Neagu), Mihaela; Pascu, Daniela-Elena; Cozea, Andreea; Bunaciu, Andrei A.; Miron, Alexandra Raluca; Nechifor, Cristina Aurelia

    2015-12-01

    This paper is aimed to select plant materials rich in bioflavonoid compounds, made from herbs known for their application performances in the prevention and therapy of renal diseases, namely kidney stones and urinary infections (renal lithiasis, nephritis, urethritis, cystitis, etc.). This paper presents a comparative study of the medicinal plant extracts composition belonging to Ericaceae-Cranberry (fruit and leaves) - Vaccinium vitis-idaea L. and Bilberry (fruit) - Vaccinium myrtillus L. Concentrated extracts obtained from medicinal plants used in this work were analyzed from structural, morphological and compositional points of view using different techniques: chromatographic methods (HPLC), scanning electronic microscopy, infrared, and UV spectrophotometry, also by using kinetic model. Liquid chromatography was able to identify the specific compounds of the Ericaceae family, present in all three extracts, arbutosid, as well as specific components of each species, mostly from the class of polyphenols. The identification and quantitative determination of the active ingredients from these extracts can give information related to their therapeutic effects.

  11. Models Role within Active Learning in Biology. A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pop-Pacurar, Irina; Tirla, Felicia-Doina

    2009-01-01

    In order to integrate ideas and information creatively, to motivate students and activate their thinking, we have used in Biology classes a series of active methods, among which the methods of critical thinking, which had very good results. Still, in the case of some intuitive, abstract, more difficult topics, such as the cell structure,…

  12. Development of biological soil crusts and their influence on soil hydrology in the recultivation area of lignite open-cast mining district in Lower Lusatia (Germany)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spröte, R.; Veste, M.; Fischer, T.; Raab, T.; Bens, O.; Hüttl, R. F.

    2012-04-01

    Cyanobacteria, green algae, mosses and lichens are often the first colonizers of substrate and initial soil surfaces. They are an important factor of initial soil formation as they stabilize the substrate and decrease erosion processes. Biological soil crusts accumulate the initial soil organic matter and provide nitrogen fixation. Once settled, the crusts influence the soil water regime by delaying or limiting infiltration through enhanced water repellency. Aim of this study was to compare the influence of biological soil crusts on soil hydrology under conditions on various substrates and of different ages in recultivated areas of the open-cast mining district of Lower Lusatia (Brandenburg, NE Germany) with various recultivation aims. In Brandenburg (NE Germany), where the climate is transitional between oceanic and continental and the summers are characterized by generally low of precipitation (mean annual rainfall 559 mm, mean annual temperature 9.3° C) open landscapes provide ideal conditions for biological soil crusts, e. g. on mobile sand dunes in former military training areas and in recultivation areas related to open-cast mining with initial soil development. Here biological soil crusts are commonly found (Spröte et al., 2010). At five study sites in recultivation areas with different reclamation approaches (natural development, pine reforestation, birch reforestation) we defined four types of biological soil crusts: i) cyanobacterial and green algae crusts on the soil surface with no vegetation where dominating sand grains were physically stabilized in their contact zones by this crust type (type 1), ii) cyanobacteria and green algae partially filled in the matrix pores and enmeshed sand grains between sparse vegetation cover (type 2), iii) biological soil crusts with mosses which covered most of the surface between the vegetation (type 3) and (iv) with soil lichens (type 4). We investigated the development of the amount of chlorophyll a which is an indicator for biomass productivity and depends from the species composition and crust type, and the water repellency index which shows the influence of biological soil crusts on hydrological parameters. Additionally, organic matter content (dry combustion) as well as soil pH (soil: H2O = 1:2.5) were determined. Texture was analysed by wet sieving and fractionation pipette method. At all study sites and for all crust types soil pH ranged between 7.2 to 4.7 and decreased from type 1 to type 4. Soil organic matter and chlorophyll a concentrations ranged from 0.3 and 1.7% and from 0.95 to 16.44 mg m-2, respectively, and increased from type 1 to type 4. With few exceptions, water repellency indices ranging between 1.0 and 1.85, followed this trend. Constrarily, infiltration rates decreased from type 1 to type 4. The cause for limited infiltration is the swelling of extracellular polysaccharides in the biological soil crusts (Fischer et al., 2010) and the influence of the particle size distribution and porosity of the substrate with a relatively high content of silt and clay at some study sites. Fischer, T., Veste, M., Wiehe, W. & Lange, P. (2010): Water repellency and pore clogging at early succesional stages of microbiotic crusts on inland dunes, Brandenburg, NE Germany. - Catena, 80, 47-52. Spröte, R.,Fischer, T., Veste, M., Raab, T., Wiehe, W., Lange, P., Bens, O., Hüttl, R.F. (2010): Biological topsoil crusts at early su