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The Microbial Regulation of Global Biogeochemical Cycles

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889192977 Year: Pages: 241 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-297-7 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Geography --- Microbiology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2015-12-10 11:59:07
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Global biogeochemical cycles of carbon and nutrients are increasingly affected by human activities. So far, modeling has been central for our understanding of how this will affect ecosystem functioning and the biogeochemical cycling of carbon and nutrients. These models have been forced to adopt a reductive approach built on the flow of carbon and nutrients between pools that are difficult or even impossible to verify with empirical evidence. Furthermore, while some of these models include the response in physiology, ecology and biogeography of primary producers to environmental change, the microbial part of the ecosystem is generally poorly represented or lacking altogether. The principal pool of carbon and nutrients in soil is the organic matter. The turnover of this reservoir is governed by microorganisms that act as catalytic converters of environmental conditions into biogeochemical cycling of carbon and nutrients. The dependency of this conversion activity on individual environmental conditions such as pH, moisture and temperature has been frequently studied. On the contrary, only rarely have the microorganisms involved in carrying out the processes been identified, and one of the biggest challenges for advancing our understanding of biogeochemical processes is to identify the microorganisms carrying out a specific set of metabolic processes and how they partition their carbon and nutrient use. We also need to identify the factors governing these activities and if they result in feedback mechanisms that alter the growth, activity and interaction between primary producers and microorganisms. By determining how different groups of microorganisms respond to individual environmental conditions by allocating carbon and nutrients to production of biomass, CO2 and other products, a mechanistic as well as quantitative understanding of formation and decomposition of organic matter, and the production and consumption of greenhouse gases, can be achieved. In this Research Topic, supported by the Swedish research councils' programme "Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in a Changing Landscape" (BECC), we intend to promote this alternative framework to address how cycling of carbon and nutrients will be altered in a changing environment from the first-principle mechanisms that drive them – namely the ecology, physiology and biogeography of microorganisms – and on up to emerging global biogeochemical patterns. This novel and unconventional approach has the potential to generate fresh insights that can open up new horizons and stimulate rapid conceptual development in our basic understanding of the regulating factors for global biogeochemical cycles. The vision for the research topic is to facilitate such progress by bringing together leading scientists as proponents of several disciplines. By bridging Microbial Ecology and Biogeochemistry, connecting microbial activities at the micro-scale to carbon fluxes at the ecosystem-scale, and linking above- and belowground ecosystem functioning, we can leap forward from the current understanding of the global biogeochemical cycles.

Harnessing Useful Rhizosphere Microorganisms for Pathogen and Pest Biocontrol

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889450596 Year: Pages: 334 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-059-6 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Botany --- Microbiology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2017-07-06 13:27:36
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Growing demographic trends require sustainable technologies to improve quality and yield of future food productions. However, there is uncertainty about plant protection strategies in many agro-ecosystems. Pests, diseases, and weeds are overwhelmingly controlled by chemicals which pose health risks and cause other undesirable effects.Therefore, an increasing concern on control measures emerged in recent years. Many chemicals became questioned with regard to their sustainability and are (or will be) banned. Alternative management tools are studied, relying on biological, and low impact solutions. This ResearchTopic concerns microbial biocontrol agents, root-associated microbiomes, and rhizosphere networks. Understanding how they interact or respond to (a)biotic environmental cues is instrumental for an effective and sustainable impact. The rhizosphere is in this regard a fundamental object of study, because of its role in plant productivity. This e-book provides a polyhedral perspective on many issues in which beneficial microorganisms are involved. Data indeed demonstrate that they represent an as yet poorly-explored resource, whose exploitation may actively sustain plant protection and crop production. Given the huge number of microbial species present on the planet, the microorganisms studied represent just the tip of an iceberg. Data produced are, however, informative enough about their genetic and functional biodiversity, as well as about the ecosystem services they provide to underp in crop production. Challenges for future research work concern not only the biology of these species, but also the practices required to protect their biodiversity and to extend their application in the wide range of agricultural soils and systems present in the world. Agriculture cannot remain successfully and sustainable unless plant germplasm and useful microbial species are integrated, a goal for which new knowledge and information-based approaches are urgently needed.Growing demographic trends require sustainable technologies to improve quality and yield of future food productions. However, there is uncertainty about plant protection strategies in many agro-ecosystems. Pests, diseases, and weeds are overwhelmingly controlled by chemicals which pose health risks and cause other undesirable effects.Therefore, an increasing concern on control measures emerged in recent years. Many chemicals became questioned with regard to their sustainability and are (or will be) banned. Alternative management tools are studied, relying on biological, and low impact solutions. This ResearchTopic concerns microbial biocontrol agents, root-associated microbiomes, and rhizosphere networks. Understanding how they interact or respond to (a)biotic environmental cues is instrumental for an effective and sustainable impact. The rhizosphere is in this regard a fundamental object of study, because of its role in plant productivity. This e-book provides a polyhedral perspective on many issues in which beneficial microorganisms are involved. Data indeed demonstrate that they represent an as yet poorly-explored resource, whose exploitation may actively sustain plant protection and crop production. Given the huge number of microbial species present on the planet, the microorganisms studied represent just the tip of an iceberg. Data produced are, however, informative enough about their genetic and functional biodiversity, as well as about the ecosystem services they provide to underp in crop production. Challenges for future research work concern not only the biology of these species, but also the practices required to protect their biodiversity and to extend their application in the wide range of agricultural soils and systems present in the world. Agriculture cannot remain successfully and sustainable unless plant germplasm and useful microbial species are integrated, a goal for which new knowledge and information-based approaches are urgently needed.

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