Disentangling thermal acclimation and substrate limitation effects on C and N cycling in peatlands

N. Carrera, P.M. van Bodegom, J.R. van Hal, R.S.P van Logtestijn, M.E. Barreal, M.J.I. Briones

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    Temperature and substrate availability are among the key factors controlling microbial metabolism. The relative importance of these two drivers on soil organic matter turnover is, however, hotly debated. In this study, we investigated the effect of temperature changes on the potential enzyme activities involved in C (phenol-oxidase) and N (protease and amidase) cycling by incubating peat soils collected in winter and summer at the two typical temperatures recorded in the field during these two distinct periods (4 and 19 °C, respectively). In addition, to evaluate the effect of substrate limitations, we also compared the respiration rates of the thermally adapted soils with and without plant litter additions. Results showed that both collection season and incubation temperature had a significant effect on the two enzymes involved in N-cycling, with summer and increasing temperatures having detrimental effects on the potential activities of protease and amidase, whereas none of these factors affected phenol-oxidase activity. Furthermore, while adding readily decomposable substrate accelerated decomposition rates, CO
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)224-231
    JournalSoil Biology and Biochemistry
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


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