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Soil Microbiology, Ecology and Biochemistry - 4th Edition - ISBN: 9780124159556, 9780123914118

Soil Microbiology, Ecology and Biochemistry

4th Edition

Editor: Eldor Paul
Hardcover ISBN: 9780124159556
eBook ISBN: 9780123914118
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 12th November 2014
Page Count: 598
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The fourth edition of Soil Microbiology, Ecology and Biochemistry updates this widely used reference as the study and understanding of soil biota, their function, and the dynamics of soil organic matter has been revolutionized by molecular and instrumental techniques, and information technology. Knowledge of soil microbiology, ecology and biochemistry is central to our understanding of organisms and their processes and interactions with their environment. In a time of great global change and increased emphasis on biodiversity and food security, soil microbiology and ecology has become an increasingly important topic.

Revised by a group of world-renowned authors in many institutions and disciplines, this work relates the breakthroughs in knowledge in this important field to its history as well as future applications. The new edition provides readable, practical, impactful information for its many applied and fundamental disciplines. Professionals turn to this text as a reference for fundamental knowledge in their field or to inform management practices.

Key Features

  • New section on "Methods in Studying Soil Organic Matter Formation and Nutrient Dynamics" to balance the two successful chapters on microbial and physiological methodology
  • Includes expanded information on soil interactions with organisms involved in human and plant disease
  • Improved readability and integration for an ever-widening audience in his field
  • Integrated concepts related to soil biota, diversity, and function allow readers in multiple disciplines to understand the complex soil biota and their function


Professionals including Soil Scientists, Ecologists, Biochemists, and Agronomists. Undergraduate and Graduate Students studying soil microbiology

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: Soil Microbiology, Ecology, and Biochemistry: An Exciting Present and Great Future Built on Basic Knowledge and Unifying Concepts
    • Abstract
    • I Scope and Challenges
    • II The Controls and Unifying Principles in our Field
    • III The Special Role of Accessibility and Spatial Scaling of Biota and Soil Organic Matter
    • IV Soil Organic Matter as a Control and Informational Storehouse of Biotic Functions
    • V Biotic Diversity and Microbial Products
    • VI Unifying Concepts
  • Chapter 2: The Soil Habitat
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Soil Genesis and Formation of the Soil Habitat
    • III Physical Aspects of Soil
    • IV Soil Habitat and Scale of Observation
    • V Soil Solution Chemistry
    • VI Environmental Factors, Temperature, and Moisture Interactions
  • Chapter 3: The Bacteria and Archaea
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Phylogeny
    • III General Features of Prokaryotes
    • IV Cell Structure
    • V Metabolism and Physiology
    • VI Biodegradation Capacity
    • VII Differentiation, Secondary Metabolism, and Antibiotic Production
    • VIII Conclusion
  • Chapter 4: The Soil Fungi: Occurrence, Phylogeny, and Ecology
    • Abstract
    • Acknowledgments
    • I Introduction
    • II Phylogeny
    • III Occurrence
    • IV Biodiversity
    • V Fungal Communities
    • VI Functions
    • VII Fungus-like Organisms and Soil Food Webs
  • Chapter 5: Soil Fauna: Occurrence, Biodiversity, and Roles in Ecosystem Function
    • Abstract
    • Acknowledgments
    • I Introduction
    • II Overview of Faunal Biodiversity in Soils
    • III Microfauna
    • IV Mesofauna
    • V Macrofauna
    • VI Roles of Soil Fauna in Ecosystems
    • VII Summary
  • Chapter 6: Molecular Approaches to Studying the Soil Biota
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Types and Structures of Nucleic Acids
    • III Nucleic acid Analyses in Soil Ecology Studies
    • IV Direct Molecular Analysis of Soil Biota
    • V Biosensors and Marker Gene Technologies
    • VI Extraction of Nucleic Acids (DNA/RNA)
    • VII Choosing Between DNA and RNA for Studying Soil Biota
    • VIII Analysis of Nucleic Acid Extracts
    • IX Partial Community Analyses—PCR-based Assays
    • X Level of Resolution
    • XI Factors that May Affect Molecular Analyses
    • XII Future Promise
  • Chapter 7: Physiological and Biochemical Methods for Studying Soil Biota and Their Functions
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Scale of Investigations and Collection of Samples
    • III Storage and Pretreatment of Samples
    • IV Microbial Biomass
    • V Compound-Specific Analyses of Microbial Biomass and Microbial Community Structure
    • VI Isotopic Composition of Microbial Biomass and Signal Molecules
    • VII Physiological Analyses
    • VIII Activities of Enzymes
    • IX Imaging Microbial Activities
    • X Functional Diversity
  • Chapter 8: The Spatial Distribution of Soil Biota
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II The Biogeography of Soil Biota
    • III Vertical Distribution Within the Soil Profile
    • IV Microscale Heterogeneity in Microbial Populations
    • V Drivers of Spatial Heterogeneity
    • VI Summary
  • Chapter 9: The Metabolic Physiology of Soil Microorganisms
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Foundations of Microbial Metabolism
    • III Metabolic Classification of Soil Organisms
    • IV Cellular Energy Transformations
    • V Examples of Soil Microbial Transformations
    • VI A Simplified View of Soil Microbial Metabolism
  • Chapter 10: The Ecology of the Soil Biota and their Function
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Mechanisms that Drive Community Structure
    • III Consequences of Microbial Community Structure for Ecosystem Function
    • IV Conclusion
  • Chapter 11: Plant-Soil Biota Interactions
    • Abstract
    • Acknowledgments
    • I Soil Biota
    • II The Rhizosphere: Ecological Network of Soil Microbial Communities
    • III New Insights into Root/Soil Microbes Through Metagenomic/Metatranscriptomic Approaches
    • IV An Important Rhizospheric Component: The Mycorrhizal Fungi
    • V The Contribution of Fungal Genome Projects
    • VI Summary
  • Chapter 12: Carbon Cycling: The Dynamics and Formation of Organic Matter
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Geological Carbon Cycle
    • III Biological C Cycle
    • IV Organic Matter
    • V Quantity, Distribution, and Turnover of Carbon in Soil and Sediments
    • VI Role of Climate Change on the Global C Cycle
    • VII Future Considerations
  • Chapter 13: Methods for Studying Soil Organic Matter: Nature, Dynamics, Spatial Accessibility, and Interactions with Minerals
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Quantifying Soil Organic Matter
    • III Fractionation Methods
    • IV Characterization Methods
    • V Visualization Methods
    • VI Methods to Measure the Turnover Rate of SOM
  • Chapter 14: Nitrogen Transformations
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Nitrogen Mineralization and Immobilization
    • III Nitrification
    • IV Inhibition of Nitrification
    • V Denitrification
    • VI Other Nitrogen Transformations in Soil
    • VII Nitrogen Movement in the Landscape
  • Chapter 15: Biological N Inputs
    • Abstract
    • Acknowledgments
    • I Global N Inputs
    • II Biological Nitrogen Fixation
    • III Free Living N2-Fixing Bacteria
    • IV Associative N2-Fixing Bacteria
    • V Phototrophic Bacteria
    • VI Symbiotic N2-Fixing Associations Between Legumes and Rhizobia
    • VII Microbial Ecology of BNF
    • VIII Biotechnology of BNF
  • Chapter 16: Biological Cycling of Inorganic Nutrients and Metals in Soils and Their Role in Soil Biogeochemistry
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Nutrient Needs of Soil Microorganisms
    • III Effect of Microorganisms on Element Cycles
    • IV Examples of Interconnections Between Microbial Community/Activity and Element Cycles
  • Chapter 17: Modeling the Dynamics of Soil Organic Matter and Nutrient Cycling
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Reaction Kinetics
    • III Modeling Soil Carbon and Nutrient Dynamics
    • IV Model Classification and Comparison
    • V Model Parameterization
    • VI Model Selection Methods
    • VII Conclusion
  • Chapter 18: Management of Soil Biota and Their Processes
    • Abstract
    • I Introduction
    • II Changing Soil Organism Populations and Processes
    • III Alternative Agricultural Management
    • IV The Potential for Managing Microorganisms and their Processes
    • V Concluding Comments on Microbial Ecology
  • Index


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© Academic Press 2017
12th November 2014
Academic Press
Hardcover ISBN:
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About the Editor

Eldor Paul

Eldor Paul

Eldor A. Paul is a Senior Research Scientist at the Natural Resources Ecology Laboratory at Colorado State University, Fort Collins and Professor Emeritus at Michigan State University, East Lansing. During his time at Michigan State, he was professor of Soil Microbiology and Biochemistry, and Crop and Soil Sciences. He earned degrees from the University of Alberta and the University of Minnesota. His research focuses on the dynamics of soil organic matter and the microbial ecology of soil. Dr. Paul is a Fellow of ASA, SSSA, the Canadian Society of Soil Science, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Affiliations and Expertise

Colorado State University, Ft. Collins, USA

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