Kathleen K. Treseder

Professor, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
School of Biological Sciences

Vice Chair, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology

Chancellor's Fellow

Ph.D., Stanford University, 1999, Biological Sciences

Phone: (949) 824-7634
Fax: (949) 824-2181
Email: treseder@uci.edu

University of California, Irvine
3106 Biological Sciences III
Mail Code: 2525
Irvine, CA 92697

picture of Kathleen K. Treseder

Microbial biogeochemistry, ecosystem ecology, and global change
URL Lab web site
Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Fostering Undergraduate Research, UCI, 2005

Charles Ludwig Distinguished Teaching Award (School of Arts and Sciences, University of Pennsylvania), 2003

NSF Postdoctoral Fellowship in Biosciences Related to the Environment, 1998

Alternate, Alexander Hollaender Postdoctoral Fellowship (DOE), 1998

Graduate Fellowship, ARCS Foundation, 1996

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, 1995

Featured in Harper’s Bazaar magazine as one of thirty-three young women likely to influence their respective fields in the upcoming century. (“Women of the 21st Century,” September 1995 issue)

Excellence in Teaching Award (Dept. of Biological Sciences, Stanford University), 1995

Academic Excellence Award (Biology Dept., University of Utah), 1994
Appointments Assistant Professor of Biology, University of Pennsylvania (January 2001-June 2003)
Postdoctoral fellow, University of California, Riverside (January 1999-December 2000)
Our work examines the role of fungi in mediating ecosystem responses to global change. Along with bacteria and other soil biota, fungi control several critical biogeochemical processes, including plant nutrient acquisition, decomposition of dead biomass, sequestration of nutrients in living and dead fungal tissue, and release of trace gases such as methyl halides. Laboratory studies have indicated that fungal growth and physiology can respond to atmospheric chemistry, nutrient availability, and soil temperature and moisture—all of which are altered by global change. As such, fungi may feed back to affect ecosystem functions under these conditions. However, soil microbes have traditionally been considered a “black box” within natural ecosystems, in which nutrient transformations sometimes occur and sometimes do not. We have no clear idea of the specific fungal groups involved, nor do we understand their individual responses to the environment. As such, we have a limited ability to predict ecosystem-level responses to environmental variation.

Several fundamental questions remain regarding the role of fungi in ecosystems. For instance, what are the links between fungal identity and biogeochemical function? What types of human activities alter fungal diversity and activity most strongly? How quickly and for how long do fungi respond to global change? By addressing each of these questions, we could advance our basic knowledge of nutrient dynamics as well as help predict ecosystem responses to global change. Until recently, soil biologists have been hampered by difficulties inherent with working on microscopic organisms belowground. However, advances in molecular approaches now allow us to survey species in situ, and nanotechnological and isotopic techniques applied in concert enable us to determine the function of fungal groups and to track the fate of nutrients on small scales.
Publications Maltz, M. R. and K. K. Treseder. 2015. Sources of inocula influence mycorrhizal colonization of plants in restoration projects: A meta-analysis. Restoration Ecology: in press.

Holden, S. R., A. A. Berhe, and K. K. Treseder. 2015. Decreases in soil moisture and organic matter quality suppress microbial decomposition following a boreal forest fire. Soil Biology and Biochemistry: in press.

Treseder, K. K. and J. T. Lennon. 2015. Fungal traits that drive ecosystem dynamics. Microbiology and Molecular Biology Reviews 79(2): in press.

Soudzilovskaia, N. A., A. A. Akhmetzhanova, P. M. van Bodegom, W. K. Cornwell, E. J. Moens, K. K. Treseder, M. Tibbett, Y. Wang, and J. H. C. Cornelissen. 2015. Global patterns of plant root colonization intensity by mycorrhizal fungi explained by climate and soil chemistry. Global Ecology and Biogeography 24: 371-382.

Kivlin, S. N. and K. K. Treseder. 2014. Initial phylogenetic relatedness of saprotrophic fungal communities affects subsequent litter decomposition rates. Microbial Ecology: DOI: 10.1007/s00248-014-0509-z

Rogers, B. M., S. Veraverbeke, G. Azzari, C. I. Czimczik, S. R. Holden, G. O. Mouteva, F. Sedano, K. K. Treseder, and J. T. Randerson. 2014. Quantifying fire-wide carbon emissions in interior Alaska using field measurements and Landsat imagery. Journal of Geophysical Research –Biogeosciences 8: 1608-1629.

Treseder, K. K., M. R. Maltz, B. A. Hawkins, N. Fierer, J. E. Stajich, and K. L. McGuire. 2014. Evolutionary histories of soil fungi are reflected in their large-scale biogeography. Ecology Letters 17 (9): 1086-1093.

Kivlin, S. N., G. C. Winston, M. L. Goulden, K. K. Treseder. 2014. Environmental filtering affects soil fungal community composition more than dispersal limitation at regional scales. Fungal Ecology 12: 14-25.

Treseder, K. K., E. Bent, J. Borneman, and K. L. McGuire. 2014. Shifts in fungal communities during decomposition of boreal forest litter. Fungal Ecology 10: 58-69.

Kivlin, S. N. and K. K. Treseder. 2014. Soil extracellular enzyme activities correspond with abiotic factors more than fungal community composition. Biogeochemistry 117: 23-37.

Hynson, N. A., V.S.F.T. Merckx, B.A. Perry and K.K. Treseder. 2013. Identities and distributions of the co-invading ectomycorrhizal fungal symbionts of exotic pines in the Hawaiian Islands. Biological Invasions 15: 2373-2385.

McGuire, K. L., S. D. Allison, N. Fierer, and K. K. Treseder. 2013. Ectomycorrhizal-dominated boreal and tropical forests have distinct fungal communities, but analogous spatial patterns across soil horizons. PLoS One 8(7): e68278. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0068278

Holden, S. R and K. K. Treseder. 2013. A meta-analysis of soil microbial responses to forest disturbances. Frontiers in Microbiology 4: 163.

Treseder, K. K. and S. R. Holden. 2013. Fungal carbon sequestration. Science 339: 1528-1529.

Treseder, K. K. 2013. Marschner Review: The extent of mycorrhizal colonization of roots and its influence on plant growth and phosphorus content. Plant and Soil 371: 1-13.

Hynson, N. A., M. Weiß, K. Preiss, G. Gebauer, and K. K.Treseder. 2013. Fungal host specificity is not a bottleneck for the germination of Pyroleae species (Ericaceae) in a Bavarian forest. Molecular Ecology 22: 1473-1481.

Martiny A. C., K. K. Treseder and G.Pusch. 2013. Phylogenetic conservatism of functional traits in microorganisms. ISME Journal 7: 830-838.

Allison, S. D., Y. Lu, C. Weihe, M. L. Goulden, A. C. Martiny, K. K. Treseder, and J. B. H. Martiny. 2013. Microbial abundance and composition influence litter decomposition response to environmental change. Ecology 94: 714-725.

Whiteside, M. D., M. O Garcia, and K. K. Treseder. 2012. Amino acid uptake in arbuscular mycorrhizal plants. PLoS One 7: e47643.

Holden, S. R., A. Gutierrez, and K. K. Treseder. 2012. Changes in soil fungal communities, extracellular enzyme activities, and litter decomposition across a fire chronosequence in Alaskan boreal forests. Ecosystems 16: 34-46.

Whiteside, M. D., M. A. Digman, E. Gratton, and K. K. Treseder. 2012. Organic nitrogen uptake by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in a boreal forest. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 55: 7-13.

Santos, G. M., A. Alexandre, J. R. Southon, K. K. Treseder, R. Corbineau, and P. E. Reyerson. 2012. Possible source of ancient carbon in phytolith concentrates from harvested grasses. Biogeosciences 9: 1873-1884.

Gartner, T. B., R. L. Sinsabaugh, G. M. Malcolm, and K. K. Treseder. 2012. Extracellular enzyme activity in the mycorrhizospheres of a boreal fire chronosequence. Pedobiologia 55: 121-127.

McGuire, K. L., N. Fierer, C. Bateman, K. K. Treseder, and B. L. Turner. 2012. Fungal community composition in neotropical rain forests: The influence of tree diversity and precipitation. Microbial Ecology 63(4): 804-812.

Talbot, J. M. and K. K. Treseder. 2012. Interactions between lignin, cellulose, and nitrogen drive litter chemistry-decay relationships. Ecology 93: 345-354.

Dooley, S. R. and K. K. Treseder. 2012. The effect of fire on microbial biomass: a meta-analysis of field studies. Biogeochemistry 109: 49-61.

Treseder, K. K. , T. C. Balser, M. A. Bradford, E. L. Brodie, E. A. Dubinsky, V. T. Eviner, K. S. Hofmockel, J. T. Lennon, U. Y. Levine, B. J. MacGregor, J. Pett-Ridge, and M. P. Waldrop. 2012. Integrating microbial ecology into ecosystem models: Challenges and priorities. Biogeochemistry 109: 7-18.

Talbot, J. M., D. J. Yelle, J. Nowick, and K. K. Treseder. 2012. Litter decay rates are determined by lignin chemistry. Biogeochemistry 108: 279-295.

Kivlin, S. N., C. V. Hawkes, and K. K. Treseder. 2011. Global diversity and distribution of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 43: 2294-2303.

Treseder, K. K., S. N. Kivlin, and C. V. Hawkes. 2011. Evolutionary trade-offs among decomposers determine responses to nitrogen enrichment. Ecology Letters 14: 933-938.

Talbot, J. M. and K. K. Treseder. 2011. Dishing the dirt on carbon cycling. Nature Climate Change 1: 144-146.

Goldfarb, K. C., U. Karaoz, C. A. Hanson, C. A. Santee, M. A. Bradford, K. K. Treseder, M. D. Wallenstein, and E. L. Brodie. 2011. Differential growth responses of soil bacterial taxa to carbon substrates of varying chemical recalcitrance. Frontiers in Terrestrial Microbiology 2: 94. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2011.00094.

Allison, S. D. and K. K. Treseder. 2011. Climate change feedbacks to microbial decomposition in boreal soils. Fungal Ecology 4: 362-374.

Drake, J., A. Gallet-Budynek, K. Hofmockel, E. Bernhardt, S. Billings, R. Jackson, K. Johnsen, J. Lichter, R. Phillips, H. McCarthy, D. Moore, M. L. McCormack, S. Palmroth, R. Oren, J. Pippen, S. Pritchard, K. K. Treseder, W. Schlesinger, E. DeLucia, A. C. Finzi. 2011. Increases in the Flux of Carbon Belowground Stimulate Nitrogen Uptake and Sustain the Long-Term Enhancement of Forest Productivity under Elevated CO2. Ecology Letters 14: 349-357.

Allison, S. D., K. L. McGuire, and K. K. Treseder. 2010. Resistance of microbial and soil properties to warming treatment seven years after boreal fire. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 42(10): 1872-1878.

Treseder, K. K., J. P. Schimel, M. O. Garcia, and M. D. Whiteside. 2010. Slow turnover and production of fungal hyphae during a Californian dry season. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 42(9): 1657-1660.

Allison, S. D., T. B. Gartner, M. C. Mack, K. L. McGuire, and K. K. Treseder. 2010. Nitrogen alters carbon dynamics during early succession in boreal forest. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 42(7): 1157-1164.

Talbot, J. M. and K. K. Treseder. 2010. Controls over mycorrhizal uptake of organic nitrogen. Pedobiologia 53(3): 169-179.

McGuire, K. L., E. Bent, J. Borneman, A. Majumder, S. D. Allison, and K. K. Treseder. 2010. Functional diversity in resource use by fungi. Ecology 91(8): 2324-2332.

McGuire, K. L. and K. K. Treseder. 2010. Microbial communities and their relevance for ecosystem models: Decomposition as a case study. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 42: 529-535.

Bradford, M., M. D. Wallenstein, S. D. Allison, K. K. Treseder, S. D. Frey, B. Watts, C. A. Davies, T. R. Maddox, J. M. Melillo, J. E. Mohan, and J. F. Reynolds. 2009. Decreased mass specific respiration under experimental warming is robust to the microbial biomass method employed. Ecology Letters 12(7): E15-E18.

Cardelús, C. L., M. C. Mack, C. Woods, J. DeMarco, and K. K. Treseder. 2009. The influence of tree species on canopy soil nutrient status in a tropical lowland wet forest in Costa Rica. Plant and Soil 318: 47-61.

Whiteside, M. D., K. K. Treseder, and P. R. Atsatt. 2009. The brighter side of soils: Quantum dots track organic nitrogen through fungi and plants. Ecology 90(1): 100-108.

Bradford, M. A., C. A. Davies, S. D. Frey, T. R. Maddox, J. M. Melillo, J. E. Mohan, J. F. Reynolds, K. K. Treseder, M. D. Wallenstein. 2008. Thermal adaptation of soil microbial respiration to elevated temperature. Ecology Letters 11(12): 1316-1327.

Allison, S. D. and K. K. Treseder. 2008. Warming and drying suppress microbial activity and carbon cycling in boreal forest soils. Global Change Biology 14: 2898-2909.

Treseder , K. K. 2008. Nitrogen additions and microbial biomass: A meta-analysis of ecosystem studies. Ecology Letters 11(10): 1111-1120.

Hanson, C. A., S. D. Allison, M. A. Bradford, M. D. Wallenstein, and K. K. Treseder. 2008. Fungal taxa target different carbon sources in forest soil. Ecosystems 11(7): 1157-1167.

Talbot, J. M., S. D. Allison, and K. K. Treseder. 2008. Decomposers in disguise: Mycorrhizal fungi as regulators of soil C dynamics in ecosystems under global change. Functional Ecology 22(6): 955-963.

Treseder , K. K., C. I. Czimczik, S. E. Trumbore, and S. D. Allison. 2008. Uptake of an amino acid by ectomycorrhizal fungi in a boreal forest. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 40: 1964-1966.

Garcia, M. O., T. Ovasapyan, M. Greas, and K. K. Treseder. 2008. Mycorrhizal dynamics under elevated CO2 and nitrogen fertilization in a warm temperate forest. Plant and Soil 303: 301-310.

Mack, M. C., K. K. Treseder, K. L. Manies, J.W. Harden, E. A. G. Schuur, J. G. Vogel, J. T. Randerson, and F. S. Chapin III. 2008. Recovery of aboveground plant biomass and productivity after fire in mesic and dry black spruce forests of Interior Alaska. Ecosystems 11: 209-225.

Allison, S. D., C. I. Czimczik, and K. K. Treseder. 2008. Microbial activity and soil respiration under nitrogen addition in Alaskan boreal forest. Global Change Biology 14: 1156-1168.

LeBauer, D. S. and K. K. Treseder. 2008. Nitrogen limitation of net primary productivity in terrestrial ecosystems is globally distributed. Ecology 89(2): 371-379.

Treseder, K. K. and K. M. Turner. 2007. Glomalin in ecosystems. Soil Science Society of America Journal 71: 1257-1266.

Allison, S. D., C. A. Hanson, and K. K. Treseder. 2007. Nitrogen fertilization reduces diversity and alters community structure of active fungi in boreal ecosystems. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 39: 1878-1887.

Violi, H. A., K. K. Treseder, J. A. Menge, S. F. Wright, and C. J. Lovatt. 2007. Density dependence and interspecific interactions between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi mediated plant growth, glomalin production, and sporulation. Canadian Journal of Botany 85(1): 63-75.

Treseder, K. K., K. M. Turner, and M. C. Mack. 2007. Mycorrhizal responses to nitrogen fertilization in boreal ecosystems: Potential consequences for soil carbon storage. Global Change Biology 13: 78-88.

Randerson, J. T., H. Liu, M. G. Flanner, S. D. Chambers, Y. Jin, P. G. Hess, G. Pfister, M. C. Mack, K. K. Treseder, L. R. Welp, F. S. Chapin, J. W. Hardin, M. L. Goulden, E. Lyons, J. C. Neff, E. A. G. Schuur, and C. S. Zender. 2006. The impact of boreal forest fire on climate warming. Science 314: 1130-1132. (pdf from journal site)

Treseder, K. K. and A. Cross. 2006. Global distributions of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Ecosystems 9: 305-316.

Treseder, K. K., M. S. Torn, and C. A. Masiello. 2006. An ecosystem-scale radiocarbon tracer to test use of litter carbon by ectomycorrhizal fungi. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 38: 1077-1082.

Allen, M. F., L. Egerton-Warburton, K. K. Treseder, C. Cario, A. Lindahl, J. Lansing, J. I. Querejeta, O. Karen, S. Harney, and T. Zink. 2005. Biodiversity of mycorrhizal fungi in Southern California. In: Planning for Biodiversity: Bringing Research and Management Together. B. E. Kus and J. L. Beyers, eds. Albany, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, 43-56.

Allen, M. F., J. N. Klironomos, K. K. Treseder, and W. C. Oechel. 2005. Responses of soil biota to elevated CO2 in a chaparral ecosystem. Ecological Applications 15(5): 1701-1711.

Treseder, K. K., M. F. Allen, R. W. Ruess, K. S. Pregitzer, and R. L. Hendrick. 2005. Lifespans of fungal rhizomorphs under nitrogen fertilization in a pinyon-juniper woodland. Plant and Soil 270(1): 249-255.

Treseder, K. K., S. J. Morris, and M. F. Allen. 2005. The contribution of root exudates, symbionts, and detritus to carbon sequestration in the soil. In: Roots and soil management— Interactions between roots and soil. S. F. Wright and R. Zobel, eds. Agronomy Monograph no. 48, Soil Science Society of America, Madison, WI, 145-162. (pdf of proof)

Treseder, K. K. 2005. (Invited) Nutrient acquisition strategies of fungi and their relation to elevated atmospheric CO2. In: The Fungal Community: Its Organization and Role in the Ecosystem, 3rd edition. J. Dighton, P. Oudemans, and J. White, eds. Marcel Dekker. pp. 713-731.(pdf of proof)

Treseder, K. K. 2005. (Invited) Unearthing ectomycorrhizal dynamics. New Phytologist 166(2): 358-359.

Czimczik, C. M., K. K. Treseder, M. S. Carbone, and S. E. Trumbore. 2005. Radiocarbon—A low-impact tool to study nutrient transport by soil fungi under field conditions. New Phytologist 166: 595-600.

Powers, J. S., K. K. Treseder, and M. T. Lerdau. 2005. Fine roots, arbuscular mycorrhizal hyphae, and soil nutrients in four neotropical rain forests: Patterns across large geographical distances. New Phytologist: 165: 913-921.

Balser, T. C., K. K. Treseder, and M. Ekenler. 2005. Using lipid analysis and hyphal length to quantify arbuscular mycorrhizal and saprotrophic fungal abundance along a soil chronosequence. Soil Biology and Biochemistry 37: 601-604..

Treseder, K. K., M. C. Mack, and A. Cross. 2004. Relationships among fires, fungi, and soil dynamics in Alaskan boreal forests. Ecological Applications 14(6): 1826-1838.

Bergner, B., J. Johnstone, and K. K. Treseder. 2004. Experimental warming and burn severity alter soil carbon dioxide flux and soil functional groups in a recently burned boreal forest. Global Change Biology 10: 1996-2004.

Treseder, K. K. 2004. A meta-analysis of mycorrhizal responses to nitrogen, phosphorus, and atmospheric CO2 in field studies. New Phytologist 164(2): 347-355.

Redeker, K. R., K. K. Treseder, and M. F. Allen. 2004. Ectomycorrhizal fungi: A new source of atmospheric methyl halides? Global Change Biology 10: 1009-1016.

Treseder, K. K., C. A. Masiello, J. L. Lansing, and M. F. Allen. 2004. Species-specific measurements of ectomycorrhizal turnover under N-fertilization: Combining isotopic and genetic approaches. Oecologia 138: 419-425.

Treseder, K. K., L. M. Egerton-Warburton, M. F. Allen, Y. Cheng, and W. C. Oechel. 2003. Alteration of soil carbon pools and communities of mycorrhizal fungi in chaparral exposed to elevated CO2. Ecosystems 6(8): 786-796.

Allen, M.F., W. Swenson, J.I. Querejeta, L. Egerton-Warburton, and K. K. Treseder. 2003. Ecology of mycorrhizae: a conceptual framework for complex interactions among plants and fungi. Annual Reviews of Phytopathology 41: 271-303.

Treseder, K. K. and M. F. Allen. 2002. Direct N and P limitation of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi: a model and field test. New Phytologist 155(3): 507-515.

Rillig, M. C., K. K. Treseder, and M. F. Allen. 2002. (Invited) Global change and mycorrhizal fungi. In: Mycorrhizal Ecology, M. van der Heijden and I. Sanders (eds), Ecological Studies Series Vol. 157. Springer Verlag, pp. 135-160.

Treseder, K. K. and P. M. Vitousek. 2001. Effects of soil nutrient availability on investment in acquisition of N and P in Hawaiian rain forests. Ecology 82(4): 946-954.

Treseder, K. K. and P. M. Vitousek. 2001. Potential ecosystem-level effects of genetic variation among populations of Metrosideros polymorpha from a soil fertility gradient in Hawaii. Oecologia 126(2): 266-275.

Treseder, K. K. and M. F. Allen. 2000. Mycorrhizal fungi have a potential role in soil carbon storage under elevated CO2 and nitrogen deposition. New Phytologist special issue: “Root dynamics and global change: an ecosystem perspective,” Volume 147: 189-200.

Treseder, K. K. and M. F. Allen. 2000. Black boxes and missing sinks: Fungi in global change research. Mycological Research 104: 1281-1283.

Martinelli, L. A., M. C. Piccolo, A. R. Townsend, P. M. Vitousek, E. Cuevas, W. McDowell, G. P. Robertson, O. C. Santos, and K. Treseder. 1999. Nitrogen stable isotopic composition of leaves and soil: Tropical versus temperate forests. Biogeochemistry 46: 45-65.

Treseder, K. K., D. W. Davidson, and J. R. Ehleringer. 1995. Absorption of ant-provided carbon dioxide and nitrogen by a tropical epiphyte. Nature 375 (6527): 137-139.
Ecological Society of America
American Geophysical Union
Sigma Xi
Research Center Center for Environmental Biology
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Last updated 04/30/2015