3 years ago

Antibiotic-Resistance Genes in Waste Water

Antibiotic-Resistance Genes in Waste Water
Antti Karkman, Fiona Walsh, Thi Thuy Do, Marko P.J. Virta

Waste water and waste water treatment plants can act as reservoirs and environmental suppliers of antibiotic resistance. They have also been proposed to be hotspots for horizontal gene transfer, enabling the spread of antibiotic resistance genes between different bacterial species. Waste water contains antibiotics, disinfectants, and metals which can form a selection pressure for antibiotic resistance, even in low concentrations. Our knowledge of antibiotic resistance in waste water has increased tremendously in the past few years with advances in the molecular methods available. However, there are still some gaps in our knowledge on the subject, such as how active is horizontal gene transfer in waste water and what is the role of the waste water treatment plant in the environmental resistome? The purpose of this review is to briefly describe some of the main methods for studying antibiotic resistance in waste waters and the latest research and main knowledge gaps on the issue. In addition, some future research directions are proposed.

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