20170808 155930 ASchneider 1920x1080Unfertilized control plot of Scots pine at the field site "Rosinedal", Sweden; photo: Andreas Schneider
Last week, SciLifeLab announced that they will support 14 sequencing projects with 33 million SEK. The project from Nathanial Street and his co-applicants Vaughan Hurry, Torgny Näsholm and Sandra Jämtgård is one of them. They will use metagenomics and metatranscriptomics to analyse the effect of various types of nitrogen fertilisation on the diversity of the belowground metacommunity.

The belowground metacommunity describes the community of all microbes, e.g. fungi and bacteria, that are living in the soil and possibly interact with each other and with plant roots. Metagenomics studies help to resolve the composition of a metacommunity while metatranscriptomics gives insight in the activity and function of the microbes in a metacommunity. Nathanial Street and his co-applicants will use these tools to understand how nitrogen fertilisation influences the diversity of the metacommunity and the processes within the community.

The researchers will compare the metacommunity diversity in Scots pine forest stands that have been fertilised for a short period with inorganic or organic nitrogen. They will also analyse the effect of a long-term fertilisation with inorganic nitrogen as well as the development of the metacommunity many decades after the last nitrogen fertilisation was applied.

SciLifeLab, the Swedish national centre for molecular biosciences, has started the national sequencing project initiative to provide sequencing support for large-scale genomic research in Sweden. This initiative comprises two programs: the Swedish Genomes Program and the Swedish Biodiversity Program. The project from Nathanial Street and his colleagues is part of the Swedish Biodiversity Program that is directed to projects studying genomic variability in nature. The awarded funding is assigned to subsidize sequencing costs.

Link to the press release from SciLifeLab:

Title of the project:
Diversity impacts on the belowground metacommunity associated with contrasting nitrogen fertilization sources

For more information, please contact:
Nathanial Street
Department of Plant Physiology
Umeå University
Phone: +46 (0)90 786 5473
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.