Are researchers following best storage practices for measuring soil biochemical properties?Citation formats

  • External authors:
  • Jennifer M. Rhymes
  • Jocelyn M. Lavallee
  • Angela L. Straathof
  • Deborah Ashworth
  • Holly Langridge
  • Franciska T. de Vries

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Are researchers following best storage practices for measuring soil biochemical properties? / Rhymes, Jennifer M.; Cordero, Irene; Chomel, Mathilde; Lavallee, Jocelyn M.; Straathof, Angela L.; Ashworth, Deborah; Langridge, Holly; Semchenko, Marina; de Vries, Franciska T.; Johnson, David; Bardgett, Richard D.

In: Soil, Vol. 7, No. 1, 26.04.2021, p. 95-106.

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Rhymes, Jennifer M. ; Cordero, Irene ; Chomel, Mathilde ; Lavallee, Jocelyn M. ; Straathof, Angela L. ; Ashworth, Deborah ; Langridge, Holly ; Semchenko, Marina ; de Vries, Franciska T. ; Johnson, David ; Bardgett, Richard D. / Are researchers following best storage practices for measuring soil biochemical properties?. In: Soil. 2021 ; Vol. 7, No. 1. pp. 95-106.

Bibtex

@article{cb22c8d1f10740cdb326182b02622789,
title = "Are researchers following best storage practices for measuring soil biochemical properties?",
abstract = "It is widely accepted that the measurement of organic and inorganic forms of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) in soils should be performed on fresh extracts taken from fresh soil samples. However, this is often not possible, and it is common practice to store samples (soils and/or extracts), despite a lack of guidance on best practice. We utilised a case study on a temperate grassland soil taken from different depths to demonstrate how differences in soil and/or soil extract storage temperature (4 or -20 °C) and duration can influence sample integrity for the quantification of soil-dissolved organic C and N (DOC and DON), extractable inorganic nitrogen (NHC + 4and NO - 3) and microbial biomass C and N (MBC and MBN). The appropriateness of different storage treatments varied between topsoils and subsoils, highlighting the need to consider appropriate storage methods based on soil depth and soil properties. In general, we found that storing soils and extracts by freezing at -20 °C was least effective at maintaining measured values of fresh material, whilst refrigerating (4 °C) soils for less than a week for DOC and DON and up to a year for MBC and MBN and refrigerating soil extracts for less than a week for NHC + 4and NO - 3did not jeopardise sample integrity. We discuss and provide the appropriate tools to ensure researchers consider best storage practice methods when designing and organising ecological research involving assessments of soil properties related to C and N cycling.We encourage researchers to use standardised methods where possible and to report their storage treatment (i.e. temperature, duration) when publishing findings on aspects of soil and ecosystem functioning. In the absence of published storage recommendations for a given soil type, we encourage researchers to conduct a pilot study and publish their findings. ",
author = "Rhymes, {Jennifer M.} and Irene Cordero and Mathilde Chomel and Lavallee, {Jocelyn M.} and Straathof, {Angela L.} and Deborah Ashworth and Holly Langridge and Marina Semchenko and {de Vries}, {Franciska T.} and David Johnson and Bardgett, {Richard D.}",
note = "Funding Information: Acknowledgements. We gratefully acknowledge Jonathan R. De Long and Ellen Fry for contributions towards the experimental design. We also thank all of the Soil and Ecosystem Ecology Laboratory members at the University of Manchester for their help and support in the lab. This project was supported by a PDRA Research Fund from the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, the University of Manchester, and awards to Richard D. Bardgett (NERC Soil Security: NE/M017028/1 and BBSRC: BB/I009000/2), Franciska T. de Vries (BBSRC David Phillips Fellowship: BB/L02456X/1), David Johnson (NERC Soil Security: NE/M017028/1 and the N8 AgriFood programme) and Irene Cordero (Ramon Areces Foundation Research Fellowship and BBSRC Discovery Fellowship: BB/S010661/1). Funding Information: Financial support. This research has been supported by the Natural Environment Research Council (grant no. NE/M017028/1) and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (grant nos. BB/I009000/2, BB/L02456X/1 and BB/S010661/1). Publisher Copyright: {\textcopyright} 2020 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.. All rights reserved.",
year = "2021",
month = apr,
day = "26",
doi = "10.5194/soil-7-95-2021",
language = "English",
volume = "7",
pages = "95--106",
journal = "Soil",
issn = "2199-3971",
publisher = "Copernicus Gesellschaft mbH",
number = "1",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Are researchers following best storage practices for measuring soil biochemical properties?

AU - Rhymes, Jennifer M.

AU - Cordero, Irene

AU - Chomel, Mathilde

AU - Lavallee, Jocelyn M.

AU - Straathof, Angela L.

AU - Ashworth, Deborah

AU - Langridge, Holly

AU - Semchenko, Marina

AU - de Vries, Franciska T.

AU - Johnson, David

AU - Bardgett, Richard D.

N1 - Funding Information: Acknowledgements. We gratefully acknowledge Jonathan R. De Long and Ellen Fry for contributions towards the experimental design. We also thank all of the Soil and Ecosystem Ecology Laboratory members at the University of Manchester for their help and support in the lab. This project was supported by a PDRA Research Fund from the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, the University of Manchester, and awards to Richard D. Bardgett (NERC Soil Security: NE/M017028/1 and BBSRC: BB/I009000/2), Franciska T. de Vries (BBSRC David Phillips Fellowship: BB/L02456X/1), David Johnson (NERC Soil Security: NE/M017028/1 and the N8 AgriFood programme) and Irene Cordero (Ramon Areces Foundation Research Fellowship and BBSRC Discovery Fellowship: BB/S010661/1). Funding Information: Financial support. This research has been supported by the Natural Environment Research Council (grant no. NE/M017028/1) and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (grant nos. BB/I009000/2, BB/L02456X/1 and BB/S010661/1). Publisher Copyright: © 2020 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.. All rights reserved.

PY - 2021/4/26

Y1 - 2021/4/26

N2 - It is widely accepted that the measurement of organic and inorganic forms of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) in soils should be performed on fresh extracts taken from fresh soil samples. However, this is often not possible, and it is common practice to store samples (soils and/or extracts), despite a lack of guidance on best practice. We utilised a case study on a temperate grassland soil taken from different depths to demonstrate how differences in soil and/or soil extract storage temperature (4 or -20 °C) and duration can influence sample integrity for the quantification of soil-dissolved organic C and N (DOC and DON), extractable inorganic nitrogen (NHC + 4and NO - 3) and microbial biomass C and N (MBC and MBN). The appropriateness of different storage treatments varied between topsoils and subsoils, highlighting the need to consider appropriate storage methods based on soil depth and soil properties. In general, we found that storing soils and extracts by freezing at -20 °C was least effective at maintaining measured values of fresh material, whilst refrigerating (4 °C) soils for less than a week for DOC and DON and up to a year for MBC and MBN and refrigerating soil extracts for less than a week for NHC + 4and NO - 3did not jeopardise sample integrity. We discuss and provide the appropriate tools to ensure researchers consider best storage practice methods when designing and organising ecological research involving assessments of soil properties related to C and N cycling.We encourage researchers to use standardised methods where possible and to report their storage treatment (i.e. temperature, duration) when publishing findings on aspects of soil and ecosystem functioning. In the absence of published storage recommendations for a given soil type, we encourage researchers to conduct a pilot study and publish their findings.

AB - It is widely accepted that the measurement of organic and inorganic forms of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) in soils should be performed on fresh extracts taken from fresh soil samples. However, this is often not possible, and it is common practice to store samples (soils and/or extracts), despite a lack of guidance on best practice. We utilised a case study on a temperate grassland soil taken from different depths to demonstrate how differences in soil and/or soil extract storage temperature (4 or -20 °C) and duration can influence sample integrity for the quantification of soil-dissolved organic C and N (DOC and DON), extractable inorganic nitrogen (NHC + 4and NO - 3) and microbial biomass C and N (MBC and MBN). The appropriateness of different storage treatments varied between topsoils and subsoils, highlighting the need to consider appropriate storage methods based on soil depth and soil properties. In general, we found that storing soils and extracts by freezing at -20 °C was least effective at maintaining measured values of fresh material, whilst refrigerating (4 °C) soils for less than a week for DOC and DON and up to a year for MBC and MBN and refrigerating soil extracts for less than a week for NHC + 4and NO - 3did not jeopardise sample integrity. We discuss and provide the appropriate tools to ensure researchers consider best storage practice methods when designing and organising ecological research involving assessments of soil properties related to C and N cycling.We encourage researchers to use standardised methods where possible and to report their storage treatment (i.e. temperature, duration) when publishing findings on aspects of soil and ecosystem functioning. In the absence of published storage recommendations for a given soil type, we encourage researchers to conduct a pilot study and publish their findings.

U2 - 10.5194/soil-7-95-2021

DO - 10.5194/soil-7-95-2021

M3 - Article

VL - 7

SP - 95

EP - 106

JO - Soil

JF - Soil

SN - 2199-3971

IS - 1

ER -