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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

On-line version ISSN 1806-9657

Abstract

LUCHETA, Adriano Reis  and  LAMBAIS, Marcio Rodrigues. Sulfur in agriculture. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2012, vol.36, n.5, pp.1369-1379. ISSN 1806-9657.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0100-06832012000500001.

Sulfur (S) deficiency in soils is becoming increasingly common in many areas of the world as a result of agronomic practices, high biomass exportation and reduced S emissions to the atmosphere. In this review, the incidence and commercial exploitation of S pools in nature are discussed, as well as the importance of S for plants and the organic and inorganic S forms in soil and their transformations, especially the process of microbiological oxidation of elemental sulfur (S0) as an alternative to the replenishment of S levels in the soil. The diversity of S0-oxidizing microorganisms in soils, in particular the genus Thiobacillus, and the biochemical mechanisms of S0 oxidation in bacteria were also addressed. Finally, the main methods to measure the S0 oxidation rate in soils and the variables that influence this process were revised.

Keywords : fertilization; agriculture; microbial diversity; soil fertility.

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