Element cycles

Element cycles are the biogeochemical pathways by which elements are transformed and moved through various states by geological and biological processes.

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  • News & Views |

    Doubling food productivity in smallholder farms — a major goal to achieve global food security, according to the United Nations — may come with additional nutrient needs. A new study reports that some regions will require almost 40% more phosphorus between 2015 and 2030 to meet this objective.

    • Thomas Nesme
  • News & Views |

    Large-scale modelling underscores the need to reduce phosphorus fertilizer application in rich countries and increase it in poor regions. Yet, the realization of associated economic and environmental benefits will require complementary analyses locally.

    • Philip M. Haygarth
    •  & Mariana C. Rufino
    Nature Food 2, 459-460
  • News & Views |

    Nutrient availability influences the susceptibility of marine primary producers to viral infection. For diatoms in iron-limited waters, reduced infection rates impact marine biogeochemical cycles by enhancing the flux of material to depth.

    • Alex J. Poulton
    Nature Geoscience 14, 181-183
  • Research Highlights |

    An article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences describes how glacier–rock interactions could fuel chemosynthetic primary production in Icelandic sediments.

    • Kyle R. Frischkorn
  • Research Highlights |

    Isotopic fractionation of mercury in fish and amphipods reveals that, after release into the atmosphere by human activities, it can reach species in the deep ocean trenches — some of the purest ecosystems.

    • Gabriella Graziano