Adaptation to chronic drought modifies soil microbial community responses to phytohormones

TitleAdaptation to chronic drought modifies soil microbial community responses to phytohormones
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsSayer E.J, Crawford J.A, Edgerley J., Askew A.P, Hahn C.Z, Whitlock R., Dodd I.C
JournalCommunications BiologyCommunications Biology
Volume4
Pagination9
Date PublishedMay
Type of ArticleArticle
Accession NumberWOS:000656148300005
Keywordsabscisic-acid, biomass ratios, carbon, climate-change, Fungal, Grassland, Life Sciences & Biomedicine - Other Topics, MECHANISMS, plant, rhizobacteria, Science & Technology - Other, stress, Topics
Abstract

Emma Sayer et al. use a 25-year field experiment to investigate how microbial community responses to phytohormones are affected by drought. Phytohormone-induced shifts in microbial functional groups suggest that drought adaptation within soil microbial communities mediates responses to plant stress signalling. Drought imposes stress on plants and associated soil microbes, inducing coordinated adaptive responses, which can involve plant-soil signalling via phytohormones. However, we know little about how microbial communities respond to phytohormones, or how these responses are shaped by chronic (long-term) drought. Here, we added three phytohormones (abscisic acid, 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid, and jasmonic acid) to soils from long-term (25-year), field-based climate treatments to test the hypothesis that chronic drought alters soil microbial community responses to plant stress signalling. Phytohormone addition increased soil respiration, but this effect was stronger in irrigated than in droughted soils and increased soil respiration at low phytohormone concentrations could not be explained by their use as substrate. Thus, we show that drought adaptation within soil microbial communities modifies their responses to phytohormone inputs. Furthermore, distinct phytohormone-induced shifts in microbial functional groups in droughted vs. irrigated soils might suggest that drought-adapted soil microorganisms perceive phytohormones as stress-signals, allowing them to anticipate impending drought.

Short TitleCommun. Biol.Commun. Biol.
Alternate JournalCommun. Biol.
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Times Cited: 0
Cited Reference Count: 77
Sayer, Emma J. Crawford, John A. Edgerley, James Askew, Andrew P. Hahn, Christoph Z. Whitlock, Raj Dodd, Ian C.
Sayer, Emma/0000-0002-3322-4487
Natural Environment Research Council UKUK Research & Innovation (UKRI)Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) [NE/P01335X/1, NE/R011451/1, NE/P013392/1]; Ecological Continuity Trust
The Buxton Climate Change Impacts Laboratory (BCCIL) was established by J.P. Grime, to whom we are very grateful. We further thank A. Ryan and C. Benskin for lab support, and the BCCIL Steering Committee for permission to carry out the study. The field site is maintained with financial support from the Ecological Continuity Trust and Natural Environment Research Council UK grants NE/R011451/1 and NE/P013392/1 to R.W. The research presented here was funded by the Natural Environment Research Council UK through grant NE/P01335X/1 to E.J.S. and an Ecological Continuity Trust Grant to J.E.

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Nature research
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