Fungal and bacterial contributions to nitrogen cycling in cheatgrass-invaded and uninvaded native sagebrush soils of the western USA

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In this study, researchers examined nitrogen cycling rates in sagebrush and cheatgrass-invaded soils over a 100 mile range in the northern Great Basin, adding antibiotics to study the roles that soil fungi and bacteria play in nitrogen transformations. Results point to the important role fungi play in nitrogen dynamics in native sagebrush steppe and suggest that cheatgrass’s alteration of the microbial community may make nitrogen more available further benefiting the establishment and growth of this invasive grass.

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