Skip to navigation Skip to content

Stable isotopes and P cycling in the soil/plant system

Important information for event attendees and external visitors

coronavirus (COVID-19)Some of our events may be delivered differently to previous years, or be adapted to reflect prevailing official guidelines or restrictions. In some circumstances they may move to online delivery. Please check back on this website ahead of the event you’re interested in to see its latest status and information about its delivery.

As the situation continues to evolve, please check the UK Government and NHS websites for the latest advice and updates. If you have any questions or concerns, please email

22 June 2015, 2.15pm: Free
at New Seminar Room, Dundee and streamed live to Macaulay B Suite, Aberdeen
for scientists, staff and students
Soil, plants and roots (c) James Hutton Institute

In this seminar, hosted by Courtney Giles and Tim George from our Ecological Sciences group, ​Dr Federica Tamburini (ETH Zurich) will discuss a novel technique that uses oxygen stable isotopes to investigate the P cycle in the soil/plant system.


In the soil/plant system, biological processes greatly influence P cycling, but the extent of their impact is still difficult to grasp. The analysis and use of oxygen stable isotopes in phosphate has allowed investigating more deeply the P cycle in the environment. Indeed, oxygen isotopes in phosphate are sensitive to the action of biological processes, i.e. biological uptake, intracellular P cycling, enzymatic processes. In the last years, we have applied this relatively novel technique to the soil/plant system. In this seminar, the theoretical grounds, the analytical and technical advances and problems, together with some case studies and possible future applications will be discussed.


​Dr Tamburini has always studied the phosphorus cycle, first in marine sediments then in terrestrial ecosystems. She has spent 7 years as a researcher in the Group of Plant Nutrition at ETH Zurich, with a primary focus on the development and application of oxygen stable isotopes in phosphate to study P cycling in soils and plants.

  • MSc in Geology at the University of Urbino (Italy), 1995
  • PhD in Geology at the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland), 1997-2001
  • Post-doc at the WHOI, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (MA, USA), 2002-2003
  • Senior scientist at the Geological Dept. of the ETH Zurich (Switzerland), 2003-2007
  • Senior scientist at the Environmental System Science Dept. of the ETH Zurich (Switzerland), since 2007

Share our content

Share this

Printed from /events/stable-isotopes-and-p-cycling-soilplant-system on 24/09/21 10:38:10 PM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.