Send to

Choose Destination
Microbiologyopen. 2014 Jun;3(3):299-315. doi: 10.1002/mbo3.169. Epub 2014 Apr 4.

Taxonomic and functional profiles of soil samples from Atlantic forest and Caatinga biomes in northeastern Brazil.

Author information

Department of Cellular Biology and Genetics, UFRN, Natal, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil.


Although microorganisms play crucial roles in ecosystems, metagenomic analyses of soil samples are quite scarce, especially in the Southern Hemisphere. In this work, the microbial diversity of soil samples from an Atlantic Forest and Caatinga was analyzed using a metagenomic approach. Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria were the dominant phyla in both samples. Among which, a significant proportion of stress-resistant bacteria associated to organic matter degradation was found. Sequences related to metabolism of amino acids, nitrogen, and DNA and stress resistance were more frequent in Caatinga soil, while the forest sample showed the highest occurrence of hits annotated in phosphorous metabolism, defense mechanisms, and aromatic compound degradation subsystems. The principal component analysis (PCA) showed that our samples are close to the desert metagenomes in relation to taxonomy, but are more similar to rhizosphere microbiota in relation to the functional profiles. The data indicate that soil characteristics affect the taxonomic and functional distribution; these characteristics include low nutrient content, high drainage (both are sandy soils), vegetation, and exposure to stress. In both samples, a rapid turnover of organic matter with low greenhouse gas emission was suggested by the functional profiles obtained, reinforcing the importance of preserving natural areas.


Atlantic forest; bioinformatic; caatinga; comparative metagenomics; pyrosequencing.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center