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Glacier forefield chronosequences, initially composed of barren substrate after glacier retreat, are ideal locations to study primary microbial colonization and succession in a natural environment. We characterized the structure and composition of bacterial, archaeal and fungal communities in exposed rock substrates along the Damma glacier forefield in(More)
BACKGROUND RT-qPCR is a powerful tool for analysing gene expression. It depends on measuring the increase in fluorescence emitted by a DNA-specific dye during the PCR reaction. For relative quantification, where the expression of a target gene is measured in relation to one or multiple reference genes, various mathematical approaches are published. The(More)
Root hairs develop as long extensions from root epidermal cells. After the formation of an initial bulge at the distal end of the epidermal cell, the root hair structure elongates by tip growth. Because root hairs are not surrounded by other cells, root hair formation provides an excellent system for studying the highly complex process of plant cell growth.(More)
Cultivation-independent analyses of soil microbial community structures are frequently used to describe microbiological soil characteristics. Semi-automated terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) analyses yield high-resolution genetic profiles of highly diverse soil microbial communities and hold great potential for use in routine soil(More)
Drought is expected to become an increasingly important factor limiting tree growth caused by climate change. Two divergent clones of Populus nigra (58-861 and Poli) originating from contrasting environments were subjected to water limitation (WL) to elucidate whether they differ in tolerance to drought, which mechanisms to avoid stress they exhibit and(More)
Several bacterial strains isolated from granitic rock material in front of the Damma glacier (Central Swiss Alps) were shown (i) to grow in the presence of granite powder and a glucose-NH(4)Cl minimal medium without additional macro- or micronutrients and (ii) to produce weathering-associated agents. In particular, four bacterial isolates (one isolate each(More)
Low-input agricultural systems aim at reducing the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides in order to improve sustainable production and ecosystem health. Despite the integral role of the soil microbiome in agricultural production, we still have a limited understanding of the complex response of microbial diversity to organic and conventional farming.(More)
Published chronic toxicity data for Hg(II) added to soils were assembled and evaluated to produce a data set comprising 52 chronic end-points, five each for plants and invertebrates and 42 for microbes. With end-points expressed in terms of added soil Hg(II) contents, Critical Limits were derived from the 5th percentiles of species sensitivity(More)
Norway spruce seedlings colonized with Hebeloma crustuliniforme were grown in growth pouches. After formation of ectomycorrhizas, the seedlings were exposed to Al or the heavy metals Cd, Cu, Ni, or Zn at various concentrations for 5 weeks to estimate the detection limits of metals with X-ray microanalysis in the cryo-scanning electron microscope. When the(More)
Knowledge of the intracellular distribution of Cd in leaves is necessary in order to understand the mechanisms of hyperaccumulation in Thlaspi caerulescens. Ganges and Prayon, two ecotypes accumulating Cd to different levels, were grown in nutrient medium containing varying concentrations (0, 5, 10, 50, and 100 microM) of Cd. Several different approaches(More)