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Journal of Integrative Agriculture  2022, Vol. 21 Issue (7): 2145-2157    DOI: 10.1016/S2095-3119(21)63772-3
Special Issue: 农业生态环境-土壤微生物合辑Agro-ecosystem & Environment—Soil microbe
Agro-ecosystem & Environment Advanced Online Publication | Current Issue | Archive | Adv Search |
The effects of soil properties, cropping systems and geographic location on soil prokaryotic communities in four maize production regions across China 
TIAN Xue-liang1, 2*, LIU Jia-jia3*, LIU Quan-cheng1, XIA Xin-yao1, 3, PENG Yong4, Alejandra I. HUERTA5, YAN Jian-bing4, LI Hui3, LIU Wen-de1
1 State Key Laboratory for Biology of Plant Diseases and Insect Pests, Institute of Plant Protection, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100193, P.R.China
2 Henan Engineering Research Center of Biological Pesticide & Fertilizer Development and Synergistic Application, Henan Institute of Science and Technology, Xinxiang 453003, P.R.China
3 School of Biological Science and Technology, University of Jinan, Jinan 250022, P.R.China
4 National Key Laboratory of Crop Genetic Improvement, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan 430070, P.R.China
5 Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27606, USA
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Abstract  The diversity of prokaryotic communities in soil is shaped by both biotic and abiotic factors.  However, little is known about the major factors shaping soil prokaryotic communities at a large scale in agroecosystems.  To this end, we undertook a study to investigate the impact of maize production cropping systems, soil properties and geographic location (latitude and longitude) on soil prokaryotic communities using metagenomic techniques, across four distinct maize production regions in China.  Across all study sites, the dominant prokaryotes in soil were Alphaproteobacteria, Gammaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Gemmatimonadetes, Acidobacteria, and Actinobacteria.  Non-metric multidimensional scaling revealed that prokaryotic communities clustered into the respective maize cropping systems in which they resided.  Redundancy analysis (RDA) showed that soil properties especially pH, geographic location and cropping system jointly determined the diversity of the prokaryotic communities.  The functional genes of soil prokaryotes from these samples were chiefly influenced by latitude, soil pH and cropping system, as revealed by RDA analysis.  The abundance of genes in some metabolic pathways, such as genes involved in microbe–microbe interactions, degradation of aromatic compounds, carbon fixation pathways in prokaryotes and microbial metabolism were markedly different across the four maize production regions.  Our study indicated that the combination of soil pH, cropping system and geographic location significantly influenced the prokaryotic community and the functional genes of these microbes.  This work contributes to a deeper understanding of the composition and function of the soil prokaryotic community across large-scale production systems such as maize.

Keywords:  metagenome        cropping system        maize        soil prokaryotes  
Received: 18 March 2021   Accepted: 19 May 2021
Fund: This research was supported by the National Program for Support of Top-notch Young Professionals, China, the Open Research Fund of State Key Laboratory for Biology of Plant Diseases and Insect Pests, Institute of Plant Protection, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (SKLQF201508) and the Project of Plant Protection Key Discipline of Henan Province, China.  
About author:  TIAN Xue-liang, E-mail:; LIU Jia-jia, E-mail:; Correspondence LI Hui, Tel: +86-531-82765807, E-mail:; LIU Wen-de, Tel: +86-10-62815921, E-mail: * These authors contributed equally to this study.

Cite this article: 

TIAN Xue-liang, LIU Jia-jia, LIU Quan-cheng, XIA Xin-yao, PENG Yong, Alejandra I. HUERTA, YAN Jian-bing, LI Hui, LIU Wen-de. 2022. The effects of soil properties, cropping systems and geographic location on soil prokaryotic communities in four maize production regions across China . Journal of Integrative Agriculture, 21(7): 2145-2157.

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