E3S Web Conf.
Volume 100, 201911th Conference on Interdisciplinary Problems in Environmental Protection and Engineering EKO-DOK 2019
|Number of page(s)||9|
|Published online||10 June 2019|
The occurrence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, including Escherichia coli, in municipal wastewater and river water
Department of Environmental Microbiology, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
* Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are major reservoirs of antibiotic-resistant bacteria (ARB) which are transported to the natural environment with discharged effluents. Samples of untreated wastewater (UWW) and treated wastewater (TWW) from four municipal WWTPs and samples of river water collected upstream (URW) and downstream (DRW) from the effluent discharge point were analyzed in the study. The total counts of bacteria resistant to β-lactams and tetracyclines and the counts of antibiotic-resistant Escherichia coli were determined. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria, including antibiotic-resistant E. coli, were removed with up to 99.9% efficiency in the evaluated WWTPs. Despite the above, ARB counts in TWW samples were high at up to 1.25x105 CFU/mL in winter and 1.25x103 CFU/mL in summer. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria were also abundant (up to 103 CFU/ml) in URW and DRW samples collected in winter and summer. In both UWW and TWW samples, the counts of ARB and antibiotic-resistant E. coli were at least one order of magnitude lower in summer than in winter. The study revealed that despite the high efficiency of bacterial removal in the wastewater treatment processes, considerable amounts of ARB are released into the environment with TWW and that the percentage of ARB in total bacterial counts increases after wastewater treatment.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2019
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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