Microbial potential for denitrification in the hyperarid Atacama Desert soils

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Title:Main Title: Microbial potential for denitrification in the hyperarid Atacama Desert soils
Description:Abstract: The hyperarid soils of the Atacama Desert, Chile, contain the largest known nitrate deposits in the world. They also represent one of the most hostile environments for microbial life anywhere in the terrestrial biosphere. Despite known for its extreme dryness, several heavy rainfall events causing localised flash flooding have struck Atacama Desert core regions during the last five years. It remains unclear, however, whether these soils can support microbial denitrification. To answer this, we sampled soils along a hyperaridity gradient in the Atacama Desert and conducted incubation experiments using a robotized continuous flow system under a He/O2 atmosphere. The impacts of four successive extreme weather events on soil-borne N2O and N2 emissions were investigated, i) water addition, ii) NO3???? addition, iii) labile carbon (C) addition, and iv) oxygen depletion. The 15N–N2O site-preference (SP) approach was further used to examine the source of N2O produced. Extremely low N2O fluxes were detected shortly after water and NO3???? addition, whereas pronounced N2O and N2 emissions were recorded after labile-C (glucose) amendment in all soils. Under anoxia, N2 emissions increased drastically while N2O emissions decreased concomitantly, indicating the potential for complete denitrification at all sites. Although increasing aridity significantly reduced soil bacterial richness, microbial potential for denitrification and associated gene abundance (i.e., napA, narG, nirS, nirK, cnorB, qnorB and nosZ) was not affected. The N2O15N site preference values based on two end-member model suggested that fungal and bacterial denitrification cocontributed to N2O production in less arid sites, whereas bacterial denitrification dominated with increasing aridity. We conclude that soil denitrification functionality is preserved even with lowered microbial richness in the extreme hyperarid Atacama Desert. Future changes in land-use or extreme climate events therefore have a potential to destabilize the immense reserves of nitrate and induce significant N2O losses in the region.
Responsible Party
Creators:Wu Di (Author), Mehmet Senbayram (Author), Ghazal Moradi (Author), Ramona Mörchen (Author), Claudia Knief (Author), Erwin Klumpp (Author), Davey Jones (Author), Reinhard Well (Author), Ruirui Chen (Author), Roland Bol (Author)
Publisher:CRC1211 Database (CRC1211DB)
Publication Year:2021
CRC1211 Topic:Biology
Related Subproject:B5
Subject:Keyword: Biogeochemistry of Soils
Geogr. Information Topic:Biota
File Details
Data Type:Data Paper - Paper
File Size:2.4 MB
Date:Other: 20.04.2021
Mime Type:application/pdf
Data Format:PDF
Download Permission:Only Own Subproject
General Access and Use Conditions:According to the CRC1211DB data policy agreement.
Access Limitations:According to the CRC1211DB data policy agreement.
Specific Information - Publication
Publication Status:Published
Review Status:Peer reviewed
Publication Type:Article
Article Type:Journal
Source:Soil Biology and Biochemistry
Number of Pages:1 (1 - 1)
Metadata Details
Metadata Creator:Ramona Mörchen
Metadata Created:20.04.2021
Metadata Last Updated:20.04.2021
Funding Phase:1
Metadata Language:English
Metadata Version:V50
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