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Title: Effects of timber harvesting on the genetic potential for carbon and nitrogen cycling in five North American forest ecozones

Abstract

Forest ecosystems are critical to global biogeochemical cycles but under pressure from harvesting and climate change. We investigated the efects of organic matter (OM) removal during forest harvesting on the genetic potential of soil communities for biomass decomposition and nitrogen cycling in fve ecozones across North America. We analyzed 107 samples, representing four treatments with varied levels of OM removal, at Long-Term Soil Productivity Study sites. Samples were collected more than ten years after harvesting and replanting and were analyzed via shotgun metagenomics. High-quality short reads totaling 1.2 Tbp were compared to the Carbohydrate Active Enzyme (CAZy) database and a custom database of nitrogen cycle genes. Gene profle variation was mostly explained by ecozone and soil layer. Eleven CAZy and nine nitrogen cycle gene families were associated with particular soil layers across all ecozones. Treatment efects on gene profles were mainly due to harvesting, and only rarely to the extent of OM removal. Harvesting generally decreased the relative abundance of CAZy genes while increasing that of nitrogen cycle genes, although these efects varied among ecozones. Our results suggest that ecozone-specifc nutrient availability modulates the sensitivity of the carbon and nitrogen cycles to harvesting with possible consequences for long-term forest sustainability.

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [2];  [1]
  1. Univ. of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC (Canada)
  2. Georgia Inst. of Technology, Atlanta, GA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); USDOE Joint Genome Institute (JGI), Berkeley, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC); Genome Canada; Genome British Columbia; TULA Foundation
OSTI Identifier:
1624382
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC02-05CH11231
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 8; Journal Issue: 1; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Publisher:
Nature Publishing Group
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; 59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; science & technology - other topics; carbon cycle; element cycles; microbial ecology; soil microbiology

Citation Formats

Cardenas, Erick, Orellana, Luis H., Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T., and Mohn, William W.. Effects of timber harvesting on the genetic potential for carbon and nitrogen cycling in five North American forest ecozones. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-21197-0.
Cardenas, Erick, Orellana, Luis H., Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T., & Mohn, William W.. Effects of timber harvesting on the genetic potential for carbon and nitrogen cycling in five North American forest ecozones. United States. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-21197-0
Cardenas, Erick, Orellana, Luis H., Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T., and Mohn, William W.. Fri . "Effects of timber harvesting on the genetic potential for carbon and nitrogen cycling in five North American forest ecozones". United States. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-21197-0. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1624382.
@article{osti_1624382,
title = {Effects of timber harvesting on the genetic potential for carbon and nitrogen cycling in five North American forest ecozones},
author = {Cardenas, Erick and Orellana, Luis H. and Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T. and Mohn, William W.},
abstractNote = {Forest ecosystems are critical to global biogeochemical cycles but under pressure from harvesting and climate change. We investigated the efects of organic matter (OM) removal during forest harvesting on the genetic potential of soil communities for biomass decomposition and nitrogen cycling in fve ecozones across North America. We analyzed 107 samples, representing four treatments with varied levels of OM removal, at Long-Term Soil Productivity Study sites. Samples were collected more than ten years after harvesting and replanting and were analyzed via shotgun metagenomics. High-quality short reads totaling 1.2 Tbp were compared to the Carbohydrate Active Enzyme (CAZy) database and a custom database of nitrogen cycle genes. Gene profle variation was mostly explained by ecozone and soil layer. Eleven CAZy and nine nitrogen cycle gene families were associated with particular soil layers across all ecozones. Treatment efects on gene profles were mainly due to harvesting, and only rarely to the extent of OM removal. Harvesting generally decreased the relative abundance of CAZy genes while increasing that of nitrogen cycle genes, although these efects varied among ecozones. Our results suggest that ecozone-specifc nutrient availability modulates the sensitivity of the carbon and nitrogen cycles to harvesting with possible consequences for long-term forest sustainability.},
doi = {10.1038/s41598-018-21197-0},
journal = {Scientific Reports},
number = 1,
volume = 8,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {2}
}

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Cited by: 7 works
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Figures / Tables:

Figure 1 Figure 1: Model of nitrogen cycle in forest soils. DNRA: dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonia. Nitrite (NO2−) appears twice since it is an intermediate in denitrification, nitrification, and DNRA. The four reactions in denitrification are shown in grey arrows. Significant differences in abundance for genes targeted in our database are shownmore » in blue (Anova p < 0.05, controlling for ecozone differences). Abundances for the IDF ecozone were not included in the calculation due to differences in the sequencing method for that ecozone.« less

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