Table_1_Microbial Communities Associated With Long-Term Tillage and Fertility Treatments in a Corn-Soybean Cropping System.DOCX (13.78 kB)
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Table_1_Microbial Communities Associated With Long-Term Tillage and Fertility Treatments in a Corn-Soybean Cropping System.DOCX

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posted on 25.06.2020, 04:17 authored by Ali Y. Srour, Hala A. Ammar, Arjun Subedi, Mirian Pimentel, Rachel L. Cook, Jason Bond, Ahmad M. Fakhoury

Tillage and fertilization are common practices used to enhance soil fertility and increase yield. Changes in soil edaphic properties associated with different tillage and fertility regimes have been widely examined, yet, the microbially mediated pathways and ecological niches involved in enhancing soil fertility are poorly understood. The effects of long-term conventional tillage and no-till in parallel with three fertility treatments (No fertilization, N-only, and NPK) on soil microbial communities were investigated in a long-term field study that was established in the 1970’s. Here, we used high-throughput sequencing of bacterial, fungal and oomycetes markers, followed by community-level functional and ecological assembly to discern principles governing tillage and fertility practices’ influence on associated soil microbiomes. Both tillage and fertilizer significantly altered microbial community structure, but the tillage effect was more prominent than the fertilizer effect. Tillage significantly affected bacteria, fungi, fusaria, and oomycete beta-diversity, whereas fertilizer only affected bacteria and fungi beta-diversity. In our study different tillage and fertilizer regimes favored specific networks of metabolic pathways and distinct ecological guilds. No-till selected for beneficial microbes that translocate nutrients and resources and protect the host against pathogens. Notably, ecological guilds featuring arbuscular mycorrhizae, mycoparasites, and nematophagous fungi were favored in no-till soils, while fungal saprotrophs and plant pathogens dominated in tilled soils. Conventional till and fertilizer management shifted the communities toward fast growing competitors. Copiotrophic bacteria and fusarium species were favored under conventional tillage and in the presence of fertilizers. The analysis of the metagenomes revealed a higher abundance of predicted pathways associated with energy metabolism, translation, metabolism of cofactors and vitamins, glycan biosynthesis and nucleotide metabolism in no-till. Furthermore, no specific pathways were found to be enriched under the investigated fertilization regimes. Understanding how tillage and fertilizer management shift microbial diversity, structure and ecological niches, such as presented here, can assist with designing farming systems that can maintain high crop yield, while reducing soil erosion and nutrient losses.

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