Interactive Effects of Microbes and Nitrogen on Panicum virgatum Root Functional Traits and Patterns of Phenotypic Selection

View Researcher's Other Codes

Disclaimer: The provided code links for this paper are external links. Science Nest has no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of these links. Also, by downloading this code(s), you agree to comply with the terms of use as set out by the author(s) of the code(s).

Please contact us in case of a broken link from here

Authors Renee H. Petipas, Alan W. Bowsher, Cody S. Bekkering, Chandra N. Jack, Emily E. McLachlan, Richard Allen White III, Brett S. Younginger, Lisa K. Tiemann, Sarah E. Evans, and Maren L. Friesen
Journal/Conference Name International Journal of Plant Sciences
Paper Category , ,
Paper Abstract Premise of research. Plants in natural and agricultural systems are influenced in myriad ways by their microbial communities, particularly by providing goods and services that change plant functional traits. Microbes are considered an influential part of the environmental context that change plant trait expression, but often, microbe-mediated effects are contingent on local resources, such as nitrogen. Here, we ask how microbes and nitrogen affect belowground functional traits and patterns of phenotypic selection. Methodology. We performed a fully factorial greenhouse experiment with switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), manipulating microbial community composition and nitrogen availability. We measured plant performance and belowground functional traits and performed 16S amplicon sequencing of the root-associated microbial communities. We looked for correlations between microbial taxa and root functional traits, and we performed phenotypic selection analysis on five belowground functional traits to determine how traits affect plant relative performance across biotic and abiotic contexts. Pivotal results. All belowground plant functional traits except root tissue density were affected by adding nitrogen. We found that a microbial taxon (amplicon sequence variant [ASV]) in the genus Micromonospora correlated with shorter root lengths. We also found strong positive selection for longer roots regardless of the abiotic or biotic environment. In contrast, selection favored lower root-to-shoot ratios in high-nitrogen conditions, and selection on root tissue density was highest in treatments that had high nitrogen levels and perturbed microbial communities. Conclusions. We did not detect microbial effects on the expression of plant traits (ecological effects); however, patterns of phenotypic selection (evolutionary effects) on root tissue density differed depending on the biotic and abiotic environment. Additionally, we detected strong selection for increased root length across treatments; we also found that one ASV correlated with decreased root length, indicating potential conflict between root microbiome components and plant fitness. Future work would be to include microbial taxa in phenotypic selection analysis and to conduct manipulations of the microbes correlated with functional traits to determine causality.
Date of publication 2020
Code Programming Language Shell

Copyright Researcher 2022