Title: Increased carbon sequestration due to genetic diversity of viruses in North Karelia peatlands
Viruses play an important role in the soil ecosystems. Their ability to perform functions which influence carbon cycle in the soil is remarkable. One of the processes that is significantly affected by viruses in the soil is carbon sequestration. The present study analysed impact of genetic diversity of viruses on carbon sequestration in peatlands in North Karelia. Five restored peatland sites were chosen for the study. Carbon sequestrated in each of the sites was tracked from the year of 2014 until 2018. Seven samples for investigating genomes of viruses were taken from each of the peatland sites. Genetic analysis was done using biomarkers. As the viral DNA was hard to be recovered fully, parts of its genomes were obtained. Their assembled sequences enabled to divide acquired genomes into different viral communities. Observation in controlled environment investigated the role of viral communities and their ability to accelerate carbon sequestration. Detected viral communities had different performance in carbon sequestration and the interrelation among different communities improved the overall amount of carbon sequestrated. After complete analysis of soil samples and genetic discoveries of the viral communities it was shown that peatlands with higher genetic diversity of viruses had higher stock of carbon. This is explained by the ability of specific viral communities and their correlation with other genetically distant viral communities found in the peatlands, to increase effects of viral lysis and produce microbial necromass that is moved into nanopores by which such mass is unavailable to bacteria and other organisms. Thus, this implies that carbon will be stored and stabilized for a longer time in the soil. This study helps to recognize the attribute of viruses to optimize and increase carbon storage in soil. The discovery of the role of genetic diversity of viruses increases understanding of the ability of different viral communities to shift the processes in the soil. Moreover, as we are facing effects of climate change and continuous increase in carbon in the atmosphere the results obtained during this research will help in finding ways to increase carbon storage in the resources we have, such as soil. By recognizing the importance of viruses in soil and investigating into their ecological benefits we may find methods that can help in mitigating climate change.
Keywords: soil, viruses, carbon sequestration, peatlands, genetic diversity
Disclaimer: This writing is not based on real research.