Next Article in Journal
Seed Production, Viability, and Reproductive Limits of the Invasive Ailanthus altissima (Tree-of-Heaven) within Invaded Environments
Next Article in Special Issue
The Response of Soil CO2 Efflux to Water Limitation Is Not Merely a Climatic Issue: The Role of Substrate Availability
Previous Article in Journal
Vitality Assessment of Visually Healthy Trees in Estonia
Previous Article in Special Issue
Changes in Soil Biochemical Properties in a Cedar Plantation Invaded by Moso Bamboo
Article Menu
Issue 7 (July) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Forests 2017, 8(7), 224;

Analysis of Microbial Diversity and Greenhouse Gas Production of Decaying Pine Logs

Research Centre for Agriculture and Environment, Council for Agricultural Research and Economics, via di Lanciola 12/A, 50125 Firenze, Italy
Research Centre for Forestry and Wood, Council for Agricultural Research and Economics, piazza Nicolini 6, 38100 Trento, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Timothy A. Martin
Received: 21 April 2017 / Revised: 14 June 2017 / Accepted: 23 June 2017 / Published: 27 June 2017
Full-Text   |   PDF [1147 KB, uploaded 28 June 2017]   |  


In Sustainable Forest Management, decaying wood plays an important role in forest biodiversity, carbon balance and nutrient cycling. The management of this important component of forest ecosystems is limited by the fact that little is known about relationships between substrate quality and community structure of wood-inhabiting microorganisms. During decomposition, carbon stored in deadwood is lost either in the atmosphere or in the soil, but to our knowledge, limited information on the quantities of CO2 and other greenhouse gases (GHG) emitted is available. In the present research we investigated the correlation between the decay of logs, the decomposer microorganisms and their activities, in terms of GHG production and enzymes, in a black pine (Pinus nigra Arnold ssp. nigra) degraded forest. The decomposition of deadwood was visually assessed using a five-class system, and for each decay class four wood samples were collected. CO2, CH4 and N2O potential production from each decay class was measured in closed systems by means of gas chromatography. Enzyme activities related to carbon, nitrogen, sulphur and phosphorus cycling were measured fluorometrically. The composition of decomposer microbial communities (fungi, bacteria and actinobacteria) was assessed by using polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis fingerprinting. CO2 production and enzyme activities were significantly higher in the last decay classes of deadwood. The molecular approach highlighted differences in microbial community structure both at species and abundance levels, depending on the rate of decay. View Full-Text
Keywords: deadwood; decay classes; GHG potential production; microbial biodiversity; peri-urban forests; Monte Morello (Italy) deadwood; decay classes; GHG potential production; microbial biodiversity; peri-urban forests; Monte Morello (Italy)

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

Supplementary material


Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Pastorelli, R.; Agnelli, A.E.; De Meo, I.; Graziani, A.; Paletto, A.; Lagomarsino, A. Analysis of Microbial Diversity and Greenhouse Gas Production of Decaying Pine Logs. Forests 2017, 8, 224.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Forests EISSN 1999-4907 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top