Distribution of cutin and suberin biomarkers under forest trees with different root systems

Spielvogel, Sandra; Prietzel, Jörg; Leide, Jana; Riedel, Michael; Zemke, Julian; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid (2014). Distribution of cutin and suberin biomarkers under forest trees with different root systems. Plant and Soil, 381(1-2), pp. 95-110. Springer 10.1007/s11104-014-2103-z

[img] Text
art%3A10.1007%2Fs11104-014-2103-z.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to registered users only
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (1MB) | Request a copy

Background and aims Differences in chemical composition of root compounds and root systems among tree species may affect organic matter (OM) distribution, source and composition in forest soils. The objective of this study was to elucidate the contribution of species specific cutin and suberin biomarkers as proxies for shoot- and root-derived organic carbon (OC) to soil OM at different depths with increasing distance to the stems of four different tree species. Methods The contribution of cutin- and suberin-derived lipids to OM in a Cutanic Alisol was analyzed with increasing soil depth and distance to the stems of Fagus sylvatica L., Picea abies (L.) Karst., Quercus robur L. and Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco. Cutin and suberin monomers of plants and soils were analyzed by alkaline hydrolysis and subsequent gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. Results The amount and distribution of suberin-derived lipids in soil clearly reflected the specific root system of the different tree species. The amount of cutin-derived lipids decreased strongly with soil depth, indicating that the input of leaf/needle material is restricted to the topsoil. In contrast to the suberin-derived lipids, the spatial pattern of cutin monomer contribution to soil OM did not depend on tree species. Conclusions Our results document the importance of tree species as a main factor controlling the composition and distribution of OM in forest soils. They reveal the impact of tree species on root-derived OM distribution and the necessity to distinguish among different zones when studying soil OM storage in forests.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography > Physical Geography > Unit Soil Science

UniBE Contributor:

Spielvogel, Sandra Irene


900 History > 910 Geography & travel








Monika Wälti-Stampfli

Date Deposited:

14 Sep 2015 13:25

Last Modified:

07 Oct 2015 14:40

Publisher DOI:






Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback