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Functional Redundancy in Soil Microbial Community Based on Metagenomics Across the Globe...

Publication Type
Journal Name
Frontiers in Microbiology
Publication Date
Page Numbers
1 to 13

Understanding the contribution of soil microbial communities to ecosystem processes is critical for predicting terrestrial ecosystem feedbacks under changing climate. Our current understanding lacks a consistent strategy to formulate the linkage between microbial systems and ecosystem processes due to the presumption of functional redundancy in soil microbes. Here we present a global soil microbial metagenomic analysis to generalize patterns of microbial taxonomic compositions and functional potentials across climate and geochemical gradient. Our analyses show that soil microbial taxonomic composition varies widely in response to climate and soil physicochemical gradients, while microbial functional attributes based on metagenomic gene abundances are redundant. Among 17 climate zones, microbial taxonomic compositions were more distinct than functional potentials, as climate and edaphic properties showed more significant influence on microbial taxonomic compositions than on functional potentials. Microbial taxonomies formed a larger and more complex co-occurrence network with more module structures than functional potentials. Functional network was strongly inter-connected among different categories, whereas taxonomic network was more positively interactive in the same taxonomic groups. This study provides strong evidence to support the hypothesis of functional redundancy in soil microbes, as microbial taxonomic compositions vary to a larger extent than functional potentials based on metagenomic gene abundances in terrestrial ecosystems across the globe.