Consequences of environmental change on plant communities and plant-soil interactions

Global Change and Soil Ecology

The research conducted in my group focuses on the consequences of environmental change for plant communities and the biogeochemical cycling of nutrients and water in ecosystems. A special emphasis is on plant-soil interactions in both agronomic and natural ecosystems, and how these affect soil structure and the ecosystem's greenhouse gas balance (CO2, CH4, N2O). Methodologically, these questions are tackled using a wide range of analytical tools, including isotope labelling, gas exchange techniques, and the genetic analysis of soil microbial communities.


Recent Publications

  • Globally consistent influences of seasonal precipitation limit grassland biomass response to elevated CO2
    Hovenden, MJ; Leuzinger, S; Newton, PCD; Fletcher, A; Fatichi, S; Luscher, A; Reich, PB; Andresen, LC; Beier, C; Blumenthal, DM; Chiariello, NR; Dukes, JS; Kellner, J; Hofmockel, K; Niklaus, PA; Song, J; Wan, S; Classen, AT; Langley, JA
    NATURE PLANTS, 5 (2):167-+; 10.1038/s41477-018-0356-x FEB 2019
  • Response to Comment on "Impacts of species richness on productivity in a large-scale subtropical forest experiment"
    Bruelheide, H; Chen, YX; Huang, YY; Ma, KP; Niklaus, PA; Schmid, B
    SCIENCE, 363 (6423):10.1126/science.aav9863 JAN 11 2019
  • Effects of plant productivity and species richness on the drought response of soil respiration in temperate grasslands
    Burri, S; Niklaus, PA; Grassow, K; Buchmann, N; Kahmen, A
    PLOS ONE 13(12) Article Number: e0209031, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0209031, DEC 21 2018
  • Alteration of nitrous oxide emissions from floodplain soils by aggregate size, litter accumulation and plant-soil interactions
    Ley, Martin; Lehmann, Moritz F.; Niklaus, Pascal A.; Luster, Jorg
    BIOGEOSCIENCES, 15 (22):7043-7057; 10.5194/bg-15-7043-2018 NOV 27 2018
  • Leaf-litter overyielding in a forest biodiversity experiment in subtropical China
    Huang, Yuanyuan; Ma, Keping; Niklaus, Pascal A.; Schmid, Bernhard
    FOREST ECOSYSTEMS, 5 10.1186/s40663-018-0157-8 NOV 22 2018
  • Experimental disconnection from common mycorrhizal networks has little effect on competitive interactions among common temperate grassland species
    Milkereit, J; Frossard, E; Stoll, P; Wagg, C; Niklaus, PA
    JOURNAL OF ECOLOGY, 106 (6):2332-2343; 10.1111/1365-2745.12984 NOV 2018
  • Impacts of species richness on productivity in a large-scale subtropical forest experiment
    Huang, Y; Chen, Y; Castro-Izaguirre, N; Baruffol, M; Brezzi, M; Lang, AN; Li, Y; Haerdtle, W; Oheimb, G; Yang, X; Liu, X; Pei, K; Both, S; Yang, B; Eichenberg, D; Assmann, T; Bauhus, J; Behrens, T; Buscot, F; Chen, XY; Chesters, D; Ding, BY; Durka, W; Erfmeier, A; Fang, J; Fischer, M; Guo, LD; Guo, D; Gutknecht, JLM; He, JS; He, CL; Hector, A; Hoenig, L; Hu, RY; Klein, AM; Kuehn, P; Liang, Y; Li, S; Michalski, S; Scherer-Lorenzen, M; Schmidt, K; Scholten, T; Schuldt, A; Shi, X; Tan, MZ; Tang, Z; Trogisch, S; Wang, Z; Welk, E; Wirth, C; Wubet, T; Xiang, W; Yu, M; Yu, XD; Zhang, J; Zhang, S; Zhang, N; Zhou, HZ; Zhu, CD; Zhu, L; Bruelheide, H; Ma, K; Niklaus, PA; Schmid, B
    SCIENCE, 362 (6410):80-+; SI 10.1126/science.aat6405 OCT 5 2018
  • Disentangling effects of air and soil temperature on C allocation in cold environments: A C-14 pulse-labelling study with two plant species
    Ferrari, A; Hagedorn, F; Niklaus, PA
    ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION, 8 (16):7778-7789; 10.1002/ece3.4215 AUG 2018
  • Tree species richness increases ecosystem carbon storage in subtropical forests
    Liu, XJ; Trogisch, S; He, JS; Niklaus, PA; Bruelheide, H; Tang, ZY; Erfmeier, A; Scherer-Lorenzen, M; Pietsch, KA; Yang, B; Kuhn, P; Scholten, T; Huang, YY; Wang, C; Staab, M; Leppert, KN; Wirth, C; Schmid, B; Ma, KP
    PROCEEDINGS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES, 285 (1885):10.1098/rspb.2018.1240 AUG 29 2018
  • A plant biodiversity effect resolved to a single genetic locus
    Samuel E Wuest, Pascal A Niklaus
    doi: FEB 2018
  • Integrative research efforts at the boundary of biodiversity and global change research
    Abiven, S; Altermatt, F; Backhaus, N; Deplazes-Zemp, A; Furrer, R; Korf, B; Niklaus, PA; Schaepman-Strub, G; Shimizu, KK; Zuppinger-Dingley, D; Petchey, OL; Schaepman, ME
    CURRENT OPINION IN ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY, 29 215-222; 10.1016/j.cosust.2018.04.016 DEC 2017
  • Positive diversity-functioning relationships in model communities of methanotrophic bacteria
    Schnyder, Elvira; Bodelier, Paul L. E.; Hartmann, Martin; et al.
    ECOLOGY   Volume: 99   Issue: 3   Pages: 714-723   Published: MAR 2018

Prof. Dr. Pascal Niklaus
University of Zurich
Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
8057 Zurich

Tel: +41 (0)44 635 34 13

Research topics

  • Carbon sequestration in terrestrial ecosystems
  • Mechanisms controlling soil greenhouse gas efflux incl. CH4 and N2O
  • Effects of plant biodiversity on the structure and functioning of ecosystems