Pedosphere 29(3): 360--373, 2019
ISSN 1002-0160/CN 32-1315/P
©2019 Soil Science Society of China
Published by Elsevier B.V. and Science Press
Soil Characteristics Overwhelm Cultivar Effects on the Structure and Assembly of Root-Associated Microbiomes of Modern Maize
CHEN Lin1, XIN Xiuli1, ZHANG Jiabao1, Marc REDMILE-GORDON2, NIE Guangsen1, WANG Qingyun1,3
1State Key Laboratory of Soil and Sustainable Agriculture, Institute of Soil Science, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Nanjing 210008(China)
2Department of Sustainable Soils and Grassland Systems, Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, Herts AL5 2JQ(UK)
3School of Resources and Environment, Anhui Agricultural University, Hefei 230036(China)
ABSTRACT
      Modern breeding primarily targets crop yield traits and is likely to influence root-associated microbiomes, which play significant roles in plant growth and health. The relative importance of soil and cultivar factors in shaping root-associated microbiomes of modern maize (Zea mays L.) remains uncertain. We conducted a pot experiment in a controlled environment using three soils (Mollisol, Inceptisol, and Ultisol) and four contrasting cultivars, Denghai 605, Nonghua 816, Qiaoyu 8, and Zhengdan 958, which are widely planted in China. We used 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing to characterize the bacterial communities in the bulk soil, rhizosphere, and endosphere. Our results showed that the four cultivars had different shoot biomass and root exudate total organic carbon and organic acid contents. The microbiomes in the bulk soil, rhizosphere, and endosphere were different. We observed apparent community divergence between soils rather than cultivars, within which edaphic factors substantially contributed to microbiome variation. Moreover, permutational multivariate analysis of variance corroborated significant contributions of soil type but not cultivar on the root-associated microbiome structure. Differential abundance analysis confirmed that each soil presented a distinct root microbiome, while network analysis indicated different co-occurrence patterns of the root microbiome among the three soils. The core root microbiome members are implicated in plant growth promotion and nutrient acquisition in the roots. In conclusion, root-associated microbiomes of modern maize are much more controlled by soil characteristics than by cultivar root exudation. Our study is anticipated to help improve breeding strategies through integrative interactions of soils, cultivars, and their associated microbiomes.
Key Words:  amplicon sequencing,edaphic properties,endosphere,indigenous microbes,rhizosphere,root exudation
Citation: Chen L, Xin X L, Zhang J B, Redmile-Gordon M, Nie G S, Wang Q Y. 2019. Soil characteristics overwhelm cultivar effects on the structure and assembly of root-associated microbiomes of modern maize. Pedosphere. 29(3):360-373.
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