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Bacillus asahii comes to the fore in organic manure fertilized alkaline soils

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Jan DolfingORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


Organic manure (OM) fertilization has a profound impact on agroecosystems. However, little is known about temporal responses and roles of the specific soil microbial guilds involved in the increases of soil fertility and crop yield triggered by OM fertilization. To unravel these interactions, a series of fresh and archived soil samples from a fertilization experiment started in 1989 in North China Plain (NCP) was systematically investigated. Molecular assays of contemporary fresh samples unravel that Bacillus asahii responded most distinctly to OM fertilization, while no shifts in microbial community structure were observed between chemical fertilizations and the control without fertilization; a series of archived soil samples from 1989-2009 reveal that the indigenous B. asahii took 2-4 years to become specifically dominant and its ratio fluctuated between 40% and 72% during 20 years. Culture-dependent assessments of isolated B. asahii strain further indicate that its rise subsequently played a key role in the increases of both crop yield and soil fertility, especially via accelerating carbon and phosphorus cycling. This insight deepens our understanding of how OM impacts agroecosystems through soil microbial processes, and highlights the possibility of using archived microbial information as a reference to develop an efficient and sustainable agricultural strategy.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Feng YZ, Chen RR, Hu JL, Zhao F, Wang JH, Chu HY, Zhang JB, Dolfing J, Lin XG

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Soil Biology and Biochemistry

Year: 2015

Volume: 81

Issue: 2

Pages: 186-194

Print publication date: 01/02/2015

Online publication date: 02/12/2014

Acceptance date: 20/11/2014

Date deposited: 23/01/2015

ISSN (print): 0038-0717

ISSN (electronic): 1879-3428

Publisher: Elsevier


DOI: 10.1016/j.soilbio.2014.11.021


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Funder referenceFunder name
SAgE Faculty Research Fellowship from Newcastle University
2014CB954500National Basic Research Program (973 Program)
41371253National Natural Science Foundation of China
212000009Foundation of the State Key Laboratory of Soil and Sustainable Agriculture
41271256National Natural Science Foundation of China
KSCX2-EW-G-16Knowledge Innovation Program of Chinese Academy of Sciences
ISSASIP1118-3Knowledge Innovation Program of Chinese Academy of Sciences