Science China Earth Sciences

, Volume 61, Issue 4, pp 494–498 | Cite as

Tectonomicrobiology: A new paradigm for geobiological research

  • Chuanlun Zhang
  • Jian Lin
  • Sanzhong Li
  • Hailiang Dong
  • Fengping Wang
  • Shucheng Xie


Geomicrobiology is a sub-discipline of geobiology and emphasizes the interaction between microorganisms and their environment on Earth. There is a need to explicitly emphasize the biogeochemical processes performed by microorganisms associated with Earth’s tectonic activities, especially under the framework of the modern theory of plate tectonics. Tectonomicrobiology aims to create a better synergy between microbial and active tectonic processes. This explicit synergy should also foster better communications between solid Earth scientists and life scientists in terms of holistic Earth system dynamics at both tectonic and micro-scales.


Geobiology Geomicrobiology Tectonomicrobiology Tectonic activities Microbial evolution 


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This writing was inspired and made possible by discussions with Benchun Duan, Mian Liu, Zhigang Peng, Shufeng Yang, Hongfu Yin, Peizhen Zhang, and Yuanqing Zhu. Special thanks are due to Mian Liu and Tommy Phelps who provided valuable comments that significantly improved the quality of the paper. This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 41530105, 41373072, 91628301 & U1606401), the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant Nos. Y4SL021001 & QYZDY-SSW-DQC005), and the Southern University of Science and Technology (Grant No. Y01316209).


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Copyright information

© Science China Press and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Ocean Science and EngineeringSouthern University of Science and TechnologyShenzhenChina
  2. 2.Woods Hole Oceanographic InstitutionWoods HoleUSA
  3. 3.Institute of Marine GeodynamicsOcean University of ChinaQingdaoChina
  4. 4.State Key Laboratory of Biogeology and Environmental GeologyChina University of GeosciencesBeijingChina
  5. 5.Department of Geology and Environmental Earth ScienceMiami UniversityOxfordUSA
  6. 6.State Key Laboratory of Microbial Metabolism and State Key Laboratory of Ocean EngineeringShanghai Jiao Tong UniversityShanghaiChina
  7. 7.State Key Laboratory of Biogeology and Environmental GeologyChina University of GeosciencesWuhanChina

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