Litter Matters: The Importance of Decomposition Products for Soil Bacterial Diversity and abundance of key groups of the N cycle in Tropical Areas

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Diniz, Priscila Pereira
Ferrari Borges, Beatriz Maria
Pacobahyba de Oliveira, Aline
Rizzato Coelho, Maurício
Obede da Silva Aragão, Osnar
Ribeiro, Thiago Gonçalves
Rocha, Fernando Igne
Reed Rodrigues Coelho, Márcia
Souza Dias, Eustáquio
Cole, James R.
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Agricultural and Biosystems EngineeringBioinformatics and Computational Biology
This study investigated the contribution of soil organic layers to bacterial diversity evaluations. We used a forest in the eastern Amazon and an adjacent pasture as model systems. Distinct organic and organo-mineral layers were identified in the forest and pasture floors, including the litter, partially and wholly decomposed organic material, and the mineral and rhizospheric soils. DNA was extracted, and 16S rRNA gene sequencing and qPCR were performed to assess bacterial community structure and the abundance of critical groups of the N cycle. We observed a clear vertical gradient in bacterial community composition. Species followed a log-normal distribution, with the highest richness and diversity observed in transitional organic layers of both land uses. Generally, critical groups of the N cycle were more abundant in these transitional layers, especially in the pasture’s fragmented litter and in the forest’s partially decomposed organic material. Considering the organic layers increased diversity estimates significantly, with the highest alpha and gamma bacterial diversity observed on the pasture floor and the highest beta diversity on the forest floor. The results show that organic layers harbor significant bacterial diversity in natural and anthropized systems and suggest that they can be crucial for maintaining the N cycle in these ecosystems, highlighting the need to consider them when studying soil bacterial diversity.
This is a pre-print of the article Diniz, Priscila Pereira, Beatriz Maria Ferrari Borges, Aline Pacobahyba de Oliveira, Mauricio Rizzato Coelho, Osnar Obede da Silva Aragao, Thiago Goncalves Ribeiro, Fernando Igne Rocha et al. "Litter Matters: The Importance of Decomposition Products for Soil Bacterial Diversity and abundance of key groups of the N cycle in Tropical Areas." bioRxiv (2023): 2023-03. DOI: 10.1101/2023.03.03.530969. Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0). Copyright 2023 The copyright holder for this preprint is the author/funder, who has granted bioRxiv a license to display the preprint in perpetuity. Posted with permission.