Microbial enzyme-catalyzed processes in soils and their analysis

https://doi.org/10.17221/134/2009-PSECitation:Baldrian P. (2009): Microbial enzyme-catalyzed processes in soils and their analysis. Plant Soil Environ., 55: 370-378.
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Currently, measuring enzyme activities in soils or other lignocellulose-based materials is technically feasible; this measurement is particularly suitable for evaluating soil processes of biopolymer (cellulose, hemicelluloses, lignin, chitin and others) degradation by microbes and for assessing cycling and mobilization of principal nutrients including nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur. With some considerations, assay methods can provide reliable information on the concentration of enzymes in soil or the rates of enzyme-catalyzed processes. Enzyme analyses in recent studies demonstrated a high level of spatial variability of soil enzyme activity both in depth and in space. The vertical gradients of enzyme activities are most developed in forest soils. Furthermore, enzyme activity in soils is regulated by seasonally-dependent variables such as temperature, moisture and the input of fresh litter. While several enzymes are widely produced by different groups of soil microorganisms, some of them can be used as indicators of the presence or activity of specific microbial taxa.
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