Advances in Earth Science


Advance on Soil Organic Carbon Dynamics Mediated by Microorganisms#br#

SONG Wenjie, LIANG Yuzheng, TAO Zhen, ZHONG Qingxiang, HE Yicong   

  1. Carbon-Water Research Station in Karst Regions of Northern Guangdong, School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510006, China
  • Contact: TAO Zhen, Professor, research areas include terrestrial biogeochemical cycles research.E-mail:
  • About author:SONG Wenjie, Master student, research areas include Soil organic carbon stability research.E-mail:
  • Supported by:
    Project supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No.41771216); Guangzhou Science and Technology Plan Project (Grant No.202201011738).

SONG Wenjie, LIANG Yuzheng, TAO Zhen, ZHONG Qingxiang, HE Yicong. Advance on Soil Organic Carbon Dynamics Mediated by Microorganisms#br#[J]. Advances in Earth Science, DOI: 10.11867/j.issn.1001-8166.2023.076.

Soil organic carbon (SOC) comprises a crucial component of terrestrial ecosystem carbon pool because of its larger storage and longer resident time. Smaller changes in the SOC pool will have a significant impact on terrestrial carbon flux and the global climate change. The mechanism of composition, transformation and stability of SOC are mainly controlled by soil microbial properties. Therefore, this paper reviews the research results on the formation, transformation and stabilization of SOC mediated by microorganisms, aiming to further understand the function of soil carbon sequestration. SOC consists of plant-driven carbon and microorganismsdriven carbon. Plant carbon is the main source of SOC. Soil microbial activity is the main driving force for SOC formation, transformation and stabilization. Soil microorganisms decompose plant carbon to form easy turnover soil particulate organic carbon through “ex vivo modification” pathway. Microbial residual carbon (MRC) produced by soil microorganisms through “in vivo turnover” pathway and mineral-associated organic carbon (MAOC) formed by the interaction with soil clay minerals contribute to the stable SOC components, of which, the contribution rate of MRC to stable SOC was 38.74%. The equilibrium between the “priming effect” and the “ongoing buried effect” regulates the storage and stability of SOC. At the global scale, microbial activity mediating SOC change is subject to annual precipitation and soil environmental factors (SOC, TN, pH). In response to global changes, the mechanism of SOC quantity and quality controlled by coupling plant litter, microbial activity and soil matrix should be pay more attention, and Environmental dependence of microbial carbon use efficiency for understanding the carbon sequestration effect from soil microorganisms in the future.
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