Wassenaar, R. W., Keltjens, J. T. and Van der Drift, C. (1998): Activation and reactionkinetics of the dimethylamine/coenzyme M methyltransfer in Methanosarcina barkeri strain Fusaro. — Eur. J. Biochem. 258 : 597
Awareness of the environmental aspects of the quality of crop production has increased in recent decades, leading to renewed interest in organics such as crop residues, green manures and organic manures. The effect of organics on urea transformation was investigated by conducting a laboratory incubation experiment in alluvial clay loam soil (Typic Ustifluvents) at 33±1°C with two moisture levels (1:1 soil:water ratio and field capacity). The rate of urea hydrolysis decreased as the time of incubation increased and the disappearance of urea N was associated with a corresponding increase in the (NH
)-N content in soils treated with crop residues (rice straw and wheat straw), organic manures (poultry manure and farmyard manure) and green manures (cowpea and sesbania). In untreated soil, the time taken for the complete hydrolysis of the applied urea (200 μg urea N g
soil) was more than 96 h at both the moisture levels, whereas in amended soils it was completed in 48 h. The rate of urea hydrolysis was more rapid at field capacity than at the 1:1 soil:water ratio. Urea hydrolysis was higher in sesbaniatreated soils, followed by cowpea, poultry manure, farmyard manure, rice straw and wheat straw at both the moisture levels. At field capacity, 85.5% urea was hydrolysed in sesbania-treated soil as compared to 32% in untreated soil after 24 hours of incubation, while at the 1:1 soil:water ratio the corresponding values were 81.5 and 27.5%. Urea hydrolysis followed first order reaction kinetics at both the moisture levels.