Extracellular Enzymes in Sensing Environmental Nutrients and Ecosystem Changes: Ligand Mediation in Organic Phosphorus Cycling

  • Thanh H. DaoEmail author
Part of the Soil Biology book series (SOILBIOL, volume 22)


Inorganic and organic phosphates react strongly with soil constituents, resulting in relatively low concentrations of soluble P in the soil solution. Multiple competing reactions are operating to regulate the solution-phase concentration of P-containing organic substrates and the released phosphate for assimilation by microbes, plants, or dispersal into the environment. In intensive agrosystems, external inputs of commercial fertilizers are often required to attain sufficiency levels of plant-available P. In this chapter, we focus on the ligand exchange process involved in the solubilization of organic P, a forerunner process crucial to the function of extracellular phosphohydrolases in accessing the recalcitrant soil organic P pool. Plants and microorganisms have evolved and developed multiple strategies to obtain the needed P. In these strategies, frequent interweaving of biophysical and biochemical processes are observed in the mineralization of organic P forms. A fundamental reassessment of the biogeochemistry of P in the soil-water systems is necessary to improve our understanding of the physical chemistry of charged surfaces and the role of organic ligands in the turnover of stabilized organic P. Practical solutions to constraints to phosphohydrolases’ activity are needed to attain improved use efficiency of this non-renewable resource.


Arbuscular Mycorrhiza Inositol Phosphate Arbuscular Mycorrhizae Phosphate Adsorption Phosphate Monoester 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.US Department of AgricultureAgriculture Research ServiceBeltsvilleUSA

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