Interactions between the carbon and nitrogen cycles under elevated CO2
The main topic of my research is “interactions between the carbon and nitrogen cycles under elevated CO2”. I am working on a review paper describing the cascade of effects that rising CO2 triggers from above (increase in photosynthesis) to belowground (plant-microbes interactions). We review observations from CO2 experiments and suggest potential avenues that most likely explain these dynamics, using the NAMASTE framework (Nitrogen Availability, Mycorrhizal Association, Soils, and Terrestrial Ecosystems). This framework assumes differentiated effects of CO2 based on the type of mycorrhizal fungi the plant species associate with. The two main types of mycorrhizal fungi (arbuscular mycorrhizae -AM- and ectomycorrhizae -ECM-) have different nutrient economies (transfer different amounts of nutrients to their host plant), which causes differentiated growth and soil responses. Photosynthesis enhancement in response to rising CO2 increases the amount of carbohydrates that the plants can use for different purposes, including trading for nutrients with mycorrhizae, accentuating these dynamics.
These are some of the main aspects of my research (click below to know more):