Name: Lucy Greenfield
Project title: Widening the bottleneck of the terrestrial nitrogen cycle
Where based: Bangor
I recently graduated with an Integrated Master’s in Environmental Science from the University of Leeds achieving a First class. My final year research project focused on investigating the competition for nitrogen between Australian sub-tropical tree species and grass. My research project provided me with the skills of stable isotope probing to trace elements through the soil into the plant. This propelled me into my PhD project to investigate the soil-plant-microbe system focusing on nitrogen.
Nitrogen availability represents one of the key regulators of primary productivity in terrestrial ecosystems. However, emerging evidence is challenging the most recent paradigms of N cycling in plant-microbial-plant systems. The project will investigate plant and microbial protease release used in order to accelerate N cycling as method of priming. The project will utilize soil zymography, stable and radioactive isotope probing and proteomic approaches to explore protease diversity and the mechanistic basis of protease activity in soil.