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Oecologia

, Volume 138, Issue 3, pp 419–425 | Cite as

Species-specific measurements of ectomycorrhizal turnover under N-fertilization: combining isotopic and genetic approaches

  • Kathleen K. TresederEmail author
  • C. A. Masiello
  • J. L. Lansing
  • M. F. Allen
Ecosystems Ecology

Abstract

Ectomycorrhizal fungi play a significant role in the transfer of nutrients between plant and soil pools. Here we combine natural abundance 14C measurements with restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) to study the effects of nitrogen fertilization on the residence time of carbon within ectomycorrhizal species. We show that the carbon in ectomycorrhizal fungi turns over every 4–5 years, indicating that these fungi are relatively long-lived. Moreover, ectomycorrhizal fungi responded in a species-specific way to fertilization. Cenococcum geophilum contained younger carbon on average in nitrogen-fertilized plots than in control plots, even though turnover rates of the community as a whole did not shift significantly. Our results suggest that the response of ectomycorrhizal fungi to N availability is complex, and alterations in tissue turnover within this microbial pool may vary depending on community structure.

Keywords

Anthropogenic nitrogen deposition  Pinus edulis Radiocarbon RFLP Community composition 

Notes

Acknowledgements

We thank I. Levin and S. Leavitt for access to atmospheric data; Sevilleta Long-term Ecological Research Center for use of field sites and equipment; Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for radiocarbon analyses of samples; and J. Borneman (University of California Riverside) and A. Denton (University of Alaska Fairbanks) for advice and technical assistance with the genetic analyses. This work was funded by NSF Cross-site (DEB 9996211), Biocomplexity (DEB 9981548), and LTER III (DEB 0080529) grants to M.F.A.; an NSF Ecosystems grant to K.K.T. (DEB 010776); a Mellon Foundation grant to K.K.T.; and a Center for Accelerated Mass Spectrometry minigrant from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to K.K.T., C.A.M., and M.F.A.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen K. Treseder
    • 1
    • 5
    Email author
  • C. A. Masiello
    • 1
    • 2
    • 6
  • J. L. Lansing
    • 1
    • 3
  • M. F. Allen
    • 1
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Lawrence Livermore National LaboratoryLivermoreUSA
  3. 3.Department of BiologyUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  4. 4.Center for Conservation BiologyUniversity of CaliforniaRiversideUSA
  5. 5.Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Department of Earth System ScienceUniversity of CaliforniaIrvineUSA
  6. 6.Department of GeographyUC Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA

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