SP13c Physiological profiles of soil microbial communities (sp13c microbe physiology)

As partner project to the European subproject 13, the main objective of the Chinese group is to study soil microbial communities under different plant diversity levels and erosion potential, focusing on their functional diversity. In accordance with the main objective of the subproject 13, we will develop specific objectives for the Chinese scientists. The following questions will be the main study topics for the Chinese group: 1. How does the functional diversity of soil microbial community response to different plant diversity level? 2. Is the functional diversity of soil microbial community different between forests at different successional stages? Topic (1) will be studied in the main experimental plots and topic (2) will be studied by making measurements in the Comparative Study Plots. For all study topics we will focus on the functional diversity of soil microbial community using the approaches of soil microbial community level physiological profiles (CLPP) via Biolog assay and multiple gene expression analysis using Genetic Analysis System (Beckman Coulter). Soil microbial community level physiological profiles (CLPP) will help to estimate the relative potential metabolic versatility (Gomez et al. 2006, Zhang et al 2008). And multiple gene expression analysis using Genetic Analysis System (Beckman Coulter) will help to determine the expressions of multiple genes at the same time we will focus on the key genes in C cycles of forest soils. Our results, together with the data from our European partners who focus on the structure of microbial community and soil enzymes, are expected to be helpful in better understanding the responses of soil microbial community to plant diversity and soil erosion.