The role of soil microbiome for ecosystem restoration in the Atlantic Forest

L.F. Merloti, Lucas William Mendes, Siu Mui Tsai, S.A. Geisen, Wanderlei Bieluczyk, W.H. van der Putten

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


The Atlantic rainforest biome from Brazil has lost around 87% of its natural vegetation, with these areas being predominantly converted to different land-use systems, such as pastures and sugar cane plantations. However, large-scale ecological restoration programs in Brazil have begun to transform degraded lands into young native ecosystems using different restoration strategies, but until now, little is known about forest restoration's impact on soil microbiome and their functional role in this environment. Thus, we investigated the effect of a chrono-sequence of active and assisted forest restoration methodologies on soil microbial and micro-faunal communities in the Atlantic Forest region in São Paulo state, Brazil. We found that the soil's bacterial, fungal, and protist communities structure became similar to the undisturbed and secondary forests after 16 years of restoration, using both restoration methodologies. However, the soil diversity from restored areas remains higher than the reference forest and at the same level as the secondary forest. These results indicated that 16-years restoration is not enough time to recover soil diversity considering both methodologies, but suggest a recovery of the soil microbial community structure. Together, our results provide information to outline better methodologies to recover the above and belowground communities of tropical forests in a global scenario of intense deforestation and climate change.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2022
Event18th International Symposium on Microbial Ecology - Lausanne, Switzerland
Duration: 14 Aug 202219 Aug 2022


Conference18th International Symposium on Microbial Ecology


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