Emergent behavior of soil fungal dynamics: influence of soil architecture and water distribution

Ruth E. Falconer, Alasdair N. Houston, Wilfred Otten, Philippe C. Baveye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • 22 Citations

Abstract

Macroscopic measurements and observations in two-dimensional soil-thin sections indicate that fungal hyphae invade preferentially the larger, air-filled pores in soils. This suggests that the architecture of soils and the microscale distribution of water are likely to influence significantly the dynamics of fungal growth. Unfortunately, techniques are lacking at present to verify this hypothesis experimentally, and as a result, factors that control fungal growth in soils remain poorly understood. Nevertheless, to design appropriate experiments later on, it is useful to indirectly obtain estimates of the effects involved. Such estimates can be obtained via simulation, based on detailed micron-scale X-ray computed tomography information about the soil pore geometry. In this context, this article reports on a series of simulations resulting from the combination of an individual-based fungal growth model, describing in detail the physiological processes involved in fungal growth, and of a Lattice Boltzmann model used to predict the distribution of air-liquid interfaces in soils. Three soil samples with contrasting properties were used as test cases. Several quantitative parameters, including Minkowski functionals, were used to characterize the geometry of pores, air-water interfaces, and fungal hyphae. Simulation results show that the water distribution in the soils is affected more by the pore size distribution than by the porosity of the soils. The presence of water decreased the colonization efficiency of the fungi, as evinced by a decline in the magnitude of all fungal biomass functional measures, in all three samples. The architecture of the soils and water distribution had an effect on the general morphology of the hyphal network, with a "looped" configuration in one soil, due to growing around water droplets. These morphologic differences are satisfactorily discriminated by the Minkowski functionals, applied to the fungal biomass.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111–119
Number of pages9
JournalSoil Science
Volume177
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2012

Fingerprint

soil
water
water distribution
microbial growth
air
simulation
soil pore system
hyphae
biomass
geometry
computed tomography
growth models
droplets
porosity
soil sampling
fungi
liquids
testing
sampling
methodology

Cite this

Falconer, Ruth E.; Houston, Alasdair N.; Otten, Wilfred; Baveye, Philippe C. / Emergent behavior of soil fungal dynamics: influence of soil architecture and water distribution.

In: Soil Science, Vol. 177, No. 2, 02.2012, p. 111–119.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{fbb730d82cee41efb558be89877e8f81,
title = "Emergent behavior of soil fungal dynamics: influence of soil architecture and water distribution",
abstract = "Macroscopic measurements and observations in two-dimensional soil-thin sections indicate that fungal hyphae invade preferentially the larger, air-filled pores in soils. This suggests that the architecture of soils and the microscale distribution of water are likely to influence significantly the dynamics of fungal growth. Unfortunately, techniques are lacking at present to verify this hypothesis experimentally, and as a result, factors that control fungal growth in soils remain poorly understood. Nevertheless, to design appropriate experiments later on, it is useful to indirectly obtain estimates of the effects involved. Such estimates can be obtained via simulation, based on detailed micron-scale X-ray computed tomography information about the soil pore geometry. In this context, this article reports on a series of simulations resulting from the combination of an individual-based fungal growth model, describing in detail the physiological processes involved in fungal growth, and of a Lattice Boltzmann model used to predict the distribution of air-liquid interfaces in soils. Three soil samples with contrasting properties were used as test cases. Several quantitative parameters, including Minkowski functionals, were used to characterize the geometry of pores, air-water interfaces, and fungal hyphae. Simulation results show that the water distribution in the soils is affected more by the pore size distribution than by the porosity of the soils. The presence of water decreased the colonization efficiency of the fungi, as evinced by a decline in the magnitude of all fungal biomass functional measures, in all three samples. The architecture of the soils and water distribution had an effect on the general morphology of the hyphal network, with a {"}looped{"} configuration in one soil, due to growing around water droplets. These morphologic differences are satisfactorily discriminated by the Minkowski functionals, applied to the fungal biomass.",
author = "Falconer, {Ruth E.} and Houston, {Alasdair N.} and Wilfred Otten and Baveye, {Philippe C.}",
year = "2012",
month = "2",
doi = "10.1097/SS.0b013e318241133a",
volume = "177",
pages = "111–119",
journal = "Soil Science",
issn = "0038-075X",
publisher = "Lippincott Williams and Wilkins",
number = "2",

}

Emergent behavior of soil fungal dynamics: influence of soil architecture and water distribution. / Falconer, Ruth E.; Houston, Alasdair N.; Otten, Wilfred; Baveye, Philippe C.

In: Soil Science, Vol. 177, No. 2, 02.2012, p. 111–119.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Emergent behavior of soil fungal dynamics: influence of soil architecture and water distribution

AU - Falconer,Ruth E.

AU - Houston,Alasdair N.

AU - Otten,Wilfred

AU - Baveye,Philippe C.

PY - 2012/2

Y1 - 2012/2

N2 - Macroscopic measurements and observations in two-dimensional soil-thin sections indicate that fungal hyphae invade preferentially the larger, air-filled pores in soils. This suggests that the architecture of soils and the microscale distribution of water are likely to influence significantly the dynamics of fungal growth. Unfortunately, techniques are lacking at present to verify this hypothesis experimentally, and as a result, factors that control fungal growth in soils remain poorly understood. Nevertheless, to design appropriate experiments later on, it is useful to indirectly obtain estimates of the effects involved. Such estimates can be obtained via simulation, based on detailed micron-scale X-ray computed tomography information about the soil pore geometry. In this context, this article reports on a series of simulations resulting from the combination of an individual-based fungal growth model, describing in detail the physiological processes involved in fungal growth, and of a Lattice Boltzmann model used to predict the distribution of air-liquid interfaces in soils. Three soil samples with contrasting properties were used as test cases. Several quantitative parameters, including Minkowski functionals, were used to characterize the geometry of pores, air-water interfaces, and fungal hyphae. Simulation results show that the water distribution in the soils is affected more by the pore size distribution than by the porosity of the soils. The presence of water decreased the colonization efficiency of the fungi, as evinced by a decline in the magnitude of all fungal biomass functional measures, in all three samples. The architecture of the soils and water distribution had an effect on the general morphology of the hyphal network, with a "looped" configuration in one soil, due to growing around water droplets. These morphologic differences are satisfactorily discriminated by the Minkowski functionals, applied to the fungal biomass.

AB - Macroscopic measurements and observations in two-dimensional soil-thin sections indicate that fungal hyphae invade preferentially the larger, air-filled pores in soils. This suggests that the architecture of soils and the microscale distribution of water are likely to influence significantly the dynamics of fungal growth. Unfortunately, techniques are lacking at present to verify this hypothesis experimentally, and as a result, factors that control fungal growth in soils remain poorly understood. Nevertheless, to design appropriate experiments later on, it is useful to indirectly obtain estimates of the effects involved. Such estimates can be obtained via simulation, based on detailed micron-scale X-ray computed tomography information about the soil pore geometry. In this context, this article reports on a series of simulations resulting from the combination of an individual-based fungal growth model, describing in detail the physiological processes involved in fungal growth, and of a Lattice Boltzmann model used to predict the distribution of air-liquid interfaces in soils. Three soil samples with contrasting properties were used as test cases. Several quantitative parameters, including Minkowski functionals, were used to characterize the geometry of pores, air-water interfaces, and fungal hyphae. Simulation results show that the water distribution in the soils is affected more by the pore size distribution than by the porosity of the soils. The presence of water decreased the colonization efficiency of the fungi, as evinced by a decline in the magnitude of all fungal biomass functional measures, in all three samples. The architecture of the soils and water distribution had an effect on the general morphology of the hyphal network, with a "looped" configuration in one soil, due to growing around water droplets. These morphologic differences are satisfactorily discriminated by the Minkowski functionals, applied to the fungal biomass.

U2 - 10.1097/SS.0b013e318241133a

DO - 10.1097/SS.0b013e318241133a

M3 - Article

VL - 177

SP - 111

EP - 119

JO - Soil Science

T2 - Soil Science

JF - Soil Science

SN - 0038-075X

IS - 2

ER -