NorthenLab: Exometabolomics linking genomes with environments to understand how webs of microbes sustain biomes

Northen Lab research at the AGU Fall Meeting 2021

The Northen Lab presented multiple posters at the American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting, from December 13-17, 2021.

Among the posters was “Retention of Low Molecular Weight Soil Organic Carbon (C) Affected by Minerals”, led by Qing Zheng. Soils store a significant amount of carbon (up to twice the amount found in the atmosphere), primarily in the form of soil organic matter (SOM). SOM, in turn, comprises a number of low molecular weight (LMW) molecules that can be stabilized by soil minerals. This research investigated mineral metabolite interactions by testing the sorption of metabolites on kaolinite, gibbsite, quartz, and illite-smectite. 

Figure: Mineral sorption of microbial metabolites from Brevundimonas sp. lysate. For each metabolite, the percent sorption (relative to the non-mineral control) is displayed (A); Relative abundance of Arginine in supernatant after 24 hours sorption to minerals (B); Relative abundance of Riboflavin in supernatant after 24 hours sorption to minerals (C); Relative abundance of Cytosine in supernatant after 24 hours sorption to minerals (D); Relative abundance of Abscisic acid in supernatant after 24 hours sorption to minerals (E). *p < 0.05 for relative abundance of metabolites relative to the non-mineral control.

In addition to soil organic carbon, other posters with Northen Lab members touched upon methane cycling, drought disturbance, and wetland microbial systems. View the authors and abstracts below: 

  1. A Deep, Diverse Reservoir of Methane-Cycling Microorganisms Resists Hydrologic Perturbation to Sustain Metabolic Activity in Freshwater Wetland Soils (Adrienne Narrowe, Mikayla Borton, Penfei Liu, Jorge Villa, Bridge B McGivern, Rebecca Daly, Josue Rodriguez-Ramos, Maria Nikulkova, Michael Shaffer, Trent Northen, Malak M Tfaily, Christopher S Miller, David W Hoyt, Gil Bohrer, Timothy Hector Morin, Kelly Wrighton)
  2. Metabolic responses of soil microbes to throughfall exclusion in tropical forest soils (Stephany Soledad Chacon, Aizah Khurram, Markus Bill, Lee Dietterich, Ulas Karaoz, Trent Northen, Nicholas Bouskill)
  3. Elucidating the ecological dynamics of microbial systems in freshwater wetlands with an integrative ‘omics approach across time and space (Angela Oliverio, Adrienne B Narrowe, Mikayla Borton, Pengfei Liu, Jorge Villa, Bridget B McGivern, Rebecca Daly, Josue Rodriguez-Ramos, Maria Nikulkova, Michael Shaffer, Trent Northen, Malak M Tfaily, David W Hoyt, Gil Bohrer, Timothy Hector Morin, Christopher S Miller, Kelley Wrighton)
  4. Plant-Archaea Interactions are Central Drivers of Nitrogen Availability in Soil and Shed Light on Adaptive Metabolomic and Transcriptomic Dynamics Impacting Soil Health (oral presentation, Edi Wipf, Suzanne M Kosina, Vlastimil Novak, Tomoya Honda, Benjamin Bowen, Trent Northen, Kateryna Zhalnina)
  5. Novel Methanogenic Lineages Are Key Players in The Methane Cycle in a Coastal Freshwater Wetland (Djennyfer Karolaine De Melo Ferreira, Adrienne B Narrowe, Mikayla Borton, Pengfei Liu, Jorge Villa, Bridget B McGivern, Rebecca Daly, Josue Andres Rodriguez-Ramos, Maria Nikulkova, Michael Shaffer, Trent Northen, Malak M Tfaily, Christopher S Miller, David W Hoyt, Gil Bohrer, Timothy Hector Morin, Kelly Wrighton)