Potato cultivar type affects the structure of ammonia oxidizer communities in field soil under potato beyond the rhizosphere

A.C.F. Dias, E.F. Hoogwout, M.D.P.E. Silva, J.F. Salles, L.S. van Overbeek, J.D. Elsas

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    21 Citations (Scopus)


    The effects of plants on the microbiota involved in the oxidation of ammonia in soils have been controversial. Here, we investigated the dynamics in the abundances and community structures of the bacterial and archaeal ammonia oxidizers (AOB and AOA, respectively) in two fields that were cropped with potato. Six different potato cultivars were used, including a genetically-modified one, in a fourfold replicated experimental set-up. On the basis of bulk and rhizosphere soil extracted microbial community DNA, AOB and AOA quantitative PCR as well as PCR-DGGE were performed. In addition, samples were used for the production and analysis of amoA gene fragment based clone libraries. Regardless of sample type (bulk versus rhizosphere soil) and across soils, the population sizes of AOA (of the order 10(4)-10(8) amoA gene copies g(-1) dry soil), were generally higher than those of AOB in the same samples (about 10(4)-10(5) g(-1) dry soil), resulting in ratio's of log-transformed values > 1.0. Whereas the AOB numbers were generally raised in the rhizosphere versus bulk soils in both soils, the opposite was true for the AOA numbers. Moreover, significant effects of cultivar type on both the AOB and AOA community structures were found in both soils, and these extended to beyond the rhizospheres. The effects were found across the whole growth season. Soil type did not significantly affect the community structures of AOA, but had a small effect on the community structure of AOB. Analysis of the structures of the AOB communities revealed a prevalence of AOB subgroups 2, 3a, 3b and 4 in one field soil and of 2 and 4 in the other one. With respect to the AOA, soil/sediment clusters (SS) I, II, III and IV were found to prevail.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)85-95
    JournalSoil Biology and Biochemistry
    Publication statusPublished - 2012


    • gradient gel-electrophoresis
    • 16s ribosomal-rna
    • important players
    • acid soil
    • archaea
    • bacteria
    • abundance
    • nitrification
    • oxidation
    • crenarchaeota

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