Masters Defense Seminar


Adelle Keppers
WRS Masters Student

December 17, 2020


Characterization of Antibiotic Resistant Genes in Two Unique Community Sewer Systems

Abstract: Sewer systems are known point sources for the release of antibiotic resistance microbes into the environment so much so that their associated genes (ARG) are considered a pollutant. The release of ARGs into the environment from wastewater treatment could potentially be reduced by controlling them upstream in concentrated sources through satellite treatment or pretreatment programs prior to entry into regional wastewater treatment plants. This study examined wastewater from two unique community sewer systems to determine upstream concentrated sources of ARGs. Three source types, hospital, residential, and industrial were examined for prioritization of satellite treatment for mitigation purposes. Conventional and microfluidic polymerase chain reactions along with 16S rRNA Illumina Sequencing provided abundance of 29 ARGs, 4 metal resistance genes, and 3 integron-intergrase genes. The levels of ARGs were dependent on the origin of wastewater, community, and season. The abundance levels and types of ARGs in hospital wastewater be relatively constant while those in residential wastewater varied with season. Understanding the sources of antibiotic resistance in wastewater is helpful to assess their associated risks and to develop satellite treatment of ARG hotspots, presenting an opportunity to reduce their loading to wastewater treatment plants and inevitable release to the environment. 

Join Adelle's Zoom Seminar

Meeting ID: 968 7411 1917
Passcode: B3gXaB