Articles | Volume 17, issue 2
Biogeosciences, 17, 499–514, 2020
Biogeosciences, 17, 499–514, 2020

Research article 31 Jan 2020

Research article | 31 Jan 2020

Evidence for preferential protein depolymerization in wetland soils in response to external nitrogen availability provided by a novel FTIR routine

Hendrik Reuter et al.

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Cited articles

Aerts, R.: Climate, leaf litter chemistry and leaf litter decomposition in terrestrial ecosystems: a triangular relationship, Oikos, 79, 439–449, 1997. a
Ågren, G., Hyvönen, R., Berglund, S., and Hobbie, S.: Estimating the critical N: C from litter decomposition data and its relation to soil organic matter stoichiometry, Soil Biol. Biochem., 67, 312–318, 2013. a
Ågren, G. I., Bosatta, E., and Magill, A. H.: Combining theory and experiment to understand effects of inorganic nitrogen on litter decomposition, Oecologia, 128, 94–98, 2001. a
Andresen, L. C., Bode, S., Tietema, A., Boeckx, P., and Rütting, T.: Amino acid and N mineralization dynamics in heathland soil after long-term warming and repetitive drought, SOIL, 1, 341–349,, 2015. a
Berg, B. and McClaugherty, C.: Plant litter, Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg,, 2003. a
Short summary
Using infrared spectroscopy, we developed a routine to disentangle microbial nitrogen (N) and plant N in decomposed litter. In a decomposition experiment in three wetland soils, this routine revealed preferential protein depolymerization as a decomposition-site-dependent parameter, unaffected by variations in initial litter N content. In Sphagnum peat, preferential protein depolymerization led to a N depletion of still-unprocessed litter tissue, i.e., a gradual loss of litter quality.
Final-revised paper