Identification of critical control points for antibiotic resistance discharge in sewers

  • chair:

    Alexander, J. / Hembach, N. / Schwartz, T. (2022)

  • place:

    Science of the Total Environment, 2022, 820,

  • Date: Mai 2022
  • Abstract

    Disrupting the spread of clinically relevant antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) is one of the key components for the success of the One Health strategy. While waste water treatment plants (WWTPs) represent a final control point for daily discharges of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) to the aquatic environment, a decentralized upstream monitoring of wastewater feeds of selected urban drainage areas for blaCTX-M32, blaCTX-M15, blaOXA48, blaCMY-2, mecA, blaNDM-1, blaKPC3, vanA, and mcr-1 representing clinically relevant ARGs has been performed. Besides hospitals, also retirement homes were found to be responsible for high levels of ARG discharges compared to housing area sewer systems. The monitoring combines qPCR-based quantifications, flow volume-based analyses, and multiple antibiotic resistance analyses of isolates. As result of the study, local actions at identified critical control points could help to prevent contaminations of larger volumes of wastewaters. This strategy will support a more cost-effective treatment compared to central actions at WWTPs, only. A polluter-pays principle should be applied by this monitoring strategy.