High genomic diversity of multi-drug resistant wastewater Escherichia coli.
ABSTRACT: Wastewater treatment plants play an important role in the emergence of antibiotic resistance. They provide a hot spot for exchange of resistance within and between species. Here, we analyse and quantify the genomic diversity of the indicator Escherichia coli in a German wastewater treatment plant and we relate it to isolates' antibiotic resistance. Our results show a surprisingly large pan-genome, which mirrors how rich an environment a treatment plant is. We link the genomic analysis to a phenotypic resistance screen and pinpoint genomic hot spots, which correlate with a resistance phenotype. Besides well-known resistance genes, this forward genomics approach generates many novel genes, which correlated with resistance and which are partly completely unknown. A surprising overall finding of our analyses is that we do not see any difference in resistance and pan genome size between isolates taken from the inflow of the treatment plant and from the outflow. This means that while treatment plants reduce the amount of bacteria released into the environment, they do not reduce the potential for antibiotic resistance of these bacteria.
Project description:Improvement of industrial productions through more environment-friendly processes is a hot topic. In particular, land and marine environment pollution is a main concern, considering that recalcitrant compounds can be spread and persist for a long time. In this context, an efficient and cost-effective treatment of wastewater derived from industrial applications is crucial. Phytodepuration has been considered as a possible solution and it is based on the use of plants and their associated microorganisms to remove and/or transform pollutants. In this work we investigated the culturable microbiota of Phragmites australis roots, sampled from the constructed wetlands (CWs) pilot plant in the G.I.D.A. SpA wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) of Calice (Prato, Tuscany, Italy) before and after the CW activation in order to check how the influx of wastewater might affect the resident bacterial community. P. australis specimens were sampled and a panel of 294 culturable bacteria were isolated and characterized. This allowed to identify the dynamics of the microbiota composition triggered by the presence of wastewater. 27 out of 37 bacterial genera detected were exclusively associated to wastewater, and Pseudomonas was constantly the most represented genus. Moreover, isolates were assayed for their resistance against eight different antibiotics and synthetic wastewater (SWW). Data obtained revealed the presence of resistant phenotypes, including multi-drug resistant bacteria, and a general trend regarding the temporal evolution of resistance patterns: indeed, a direct correlation linking the appearance of antibiotic- and SWW-resistance with the time of exposure to wastewater was observed. In particular, nine isolates showed an interesting behavior since their growth was positively affected by the highest concentrations of SWW. Noteworthy, this study is among the few investigating the P. australis microbiota prior to the plant activation.
Project description:BACKGROUND: To evaluate the antibiogram and antibiotic resistance genes of some Vibrio strains isolated from wastewater final effluents in a rural community of South Africa. V. vulnificus (18), V. metschnikovii (3), V. fluvialis (19) and V. parahaemolyticus (12) strains were isolated from final effluents of a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) located in a rural community of South Africa. The disk diffusion method was used for the characterization of the antibiogram of the isolates. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was employed to evaluate the presence of established antibiotic resistance genes using specific primer sets. RESULTS: The Vibrio strains showed the typical multidrug-resistance phenotype of an SXT element. They were resistant to sulfamethoxazole (Sul), trimethoprim (Tmp), cotrimoxazole (Cot), chloramphenicol (Chl), streptomycin (Str), ampicillin (Amp), tetracycline (Tet) nalidixic acid (Nal), and gentamicin (Gen). The antibiotic resistance genes detected includes dfr18 and dfrA1 for trimethoprim; floR, tetA, strB, sul2 for chloramphenicol, tetracycline, streptomycin and sulfamethoxazole respectively. Some of these genes were only recently described from clinical isolates, demonstrating genetic exchange between clinical and environmental Vibrio species. CONCLUSIONS: These results demonstrate that final effluents from wastewater treatment plants are potential reservoirs of various antibiotics resistance genes. Moreover, detection of resistance genes in Vibrio strains obtained from the wastewater final effluents suggests that these resistance determinants might be further disseminated in habitats downstream of the sewage plant, thus constituting a serious health risk to the communities reliant on the receiving waterbodies.
Project description:The environmental spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria has been recognised as a growing public health threat for which hospitals play a significant role. The aims of this study were to investigate the prevalence of antibiotic resistance and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) in Escherichia coli isolates from hospital wastewater in Vietnam. Wastewater samples before and after treatment were collected using continuous sampling every month over a year. Standard disk diffusion and E-test were used for antibiotic susceptibility testing. Extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) production was tested using combined disk diffusion. ARGs were detected by polymerase chain reactions. Resistance to at least one antibiotic was detected in 83% of isolates; multidrug resistance was found in 32%. The highest resistance prevalence was found for co-trimoxazole (70%) and the lowest for imipenem (1%). Forty-three percent of isolates were ESBL-producing, with the blaTEM gene being more common than blaCTX-M. Co-harbouring of the blaCTX-M, blaTEM and qepA genes was found in 46% of isolates resistant to ciprofloxacin. The large presence of antibiotic-resistant E. coli isolates combined with ARGs in hospital wastewater, even post-treatment, poses a threat to public health. It highlights the need to develop effective processes for hospital wastewater treatment plants to eliminate antibiotic resistant bacteria and ARGs.
Project description:Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VREfm) is a leading cause of healthcare-associated infection. Reservoirs of VREfm are largely assumed to be nosocomial although there is a paucity of data on alternative sources. Here, we describe an integrated epidemiological and genomic analysis of E. faecium associated with bloodstream infection and isolated from wastewater. Treated and untreated wastewater from 20 municipal treatment plants in the East of England, United Kingdom was obtained and cultured to isolate E. faecium, ampicillin-resistant E. faecium (AREfm), and VREfm. VREfm was isolated from all 20 treatment plants and was released into the environment by 17/20 plants, the exceptions using terminal ultraviolet light disinfection. Median log10 counts of AREfm and VREfm in untreated wastewater from 10 plants in direct receipt of hospital sewage were significantly higher than 10 plants that were not. We sequenced and compared the genomes of 423 isolates from wastewater with 187 isolates associated with bloodstream infection at five hospitals in the East of England. Among 481 E. faecium isolates belonging to the hospital-adapted clade, we observed genetic intermixing between wastewater and bloodstream infection, with highly related isolates shared between a major teaching hospital in the East of England and 9/20 plants. We detected 28 antibiotic resistance genes in the hospital-adapted clade, of which 23 were represented in bloodstream, hospital sewage, and municipal wastewater isolates. We conclude that our findings are consistent with widespread distribution of hospital-adapted VREfm beyond acute healthcare settings with extensive release of VREfm into the environment in the East of England.
Project description:Conventional wastewater treatment is not sufficient for the removal of hygienically relevant bacteria and achieves only limited reductions. This study focuses on the reduction efficiencies of two semi-industrial ultrafiltration units operating at a large scale municipal wastewater treatment plant. In total, 7 clinically relevant antibiotic resistance genes, together with 3 taxonomic gene markers targeting specific facultative pathogenic bacteria were analysed via qPCR analyses before and after advanced treatment. In parallel with membrane technologies, an ozone treatment (1?g ozone/g DOC) was performed for comparison of the different reduction efficiencies. Both ultrafiltration units showed increased reduction efficiencies for facultative pathogenic bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes of up to 6?log units, resulting mostly in a strong reduction of the bacterial targets. In comparison, the ozone treatment showed some reduction efficiency, but was less effective compared with ultrafiltration due to low ozone dosages frequently used for micro-pollutant removal at municipal wastewater treatment plants. Additionally, metagenome analyses demonstrated the accumulation of facultative pathogenic bacteria, antibiotic resistance genes, virulence factor genes, and metabolic gene targets in the back flush retentate of the membranes, which opens further questions about retentate fluid material handling at urban wastewater treatment plants.
Project description:Wastewater contains different kinds of contaminants, including antibiotics and bacterial isolates with human-generated antibiotic resistances. In industrialized countries most of the wastewater is processed in wastewater treatment plants which do not only include commercial wastewater, but also wastewater from hospitals. Three multiresistant pathogens-extended spectrum ?-lactamase (ESBL)-harbouring Enterobacteriaceae (Gram negative bacilli), methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin resistant Enterococci (VRE)-were chosen for screening in a state of the art wastewater treatment plant in Austria. Over an investigation period of six months all three multiresistant pathogens could be isolated from activated sludge. ESBL was the most common resistance mechanism, which was found in different species of Enterobacteriaceae, and in one Aeromonas spp. Sequencing of ESBL genes revealed the dominance of genes encoding members of CTX-M ?-lactamases family and a gene encoding for PER-1 ESBL was detected for the first time in Austria. MRSA and VRE could be isolated sporadically, including one EMRSA-15 isolate. Whereas ESBL is well documented as a surface water contaminant, reports of MRSA and VRE are rare. The results of this study show that these three multiresistant phenotypes were present in activated sludge, as well as species and genes which were not reported before in the region. The ESBL-harbouring Gram negative bacilli were most common.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Antibiotic resistance is a global public health threat. Water from human activities is collected at wastewater treatment plants where processes often do not sufficiently neutralize antibiotic resistant bacteria and genes, which are further shed into the local environment. This protocol outlines the steps to conduct a systematic review based on the Population, Exposure, Comparator and Outcome (PECO) framework, aiming at answering the question "Are antimicrobial-resistant enterobacteriaceae and antimicrobial resistance genes present (O) in air and water samples (P) taken either near or downstream or downwind or down-gradient from wastewater treatment plants (E), as compared to air and water samples taken either further away or upstream or upwind or up-gradient from such wastewater treatment plant (C)?" Presence of antimicrobial-resistant bacteria and genes will be quantitatively measured by extracting their prevalence or concentration, depending on the reviewed study. METHODS:We will search PubMed, EMBASE, the Cochrane database and Web of Science for original articles published from 1 Jan 2000 to 3 Sep 2018 with language restriction. Articles will undergo a relevance and a design screening process. Data from eligible articles will be extracted by two independent reviewers. Further, we will perform a risk of bias assessment using a decision matrix. We will synthesize and present results in narrative and tabular form and will perform a meta-analysis if heterogeneity of results allows it. DISCUSSION:Antibiotic resistance in environmental samples around wastewater treatment plants may pose a risk of exposure to workers and nearby residents. Results from the systematic review outlined in this protocol will allow to estimate the extend of exposure, to inform policy making and help to design future studies.
Project description:Wastewater is considered a major source of antibiotic-resistant bacteria released into the environment. Here, we characterized carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE) in wastewater by whole-genome analysis. Wastewater samples (n = 40) were collected from municipal wastewater treatment plants and hospital wastewater in Japan and Taiwan. Samples were screened for CPE using selective media, and the obtained isolates were sequenced using an Illumina MiSeq. The isolates (n = 45) included the following microorganisms: Klebsiella quasipneumoniae (n = 12), Escherichia coli (n = 10), Enterobacter cloacae complex (n = 10), Klebsiella pneumoniae (n = 8), Klebsiella variicola (n = 2), Raoultella ornithinolytica (n = 1), Citrobacter freundii (n = 1), and Citrobacter amalonaticus (n = 1). Among the 45 isolates, 38 harbored at least one carbapenemase-encoding gene. Of these, the blaGES (blaGES-5, blaGES-6, and blaGES-24) genes were found in 29 isolates. The genes were situated in novel class 1 integrons, but the integron structures were different between the Japanese (In1439 with blaGES-24 and In1440 with blaGES-5) and Taiwanese (In1441 with blaGES-5 and In1442 with blaGES-6) isolates. Other carbapenemase-encoding genes (blaVIM-1, blaNDM-5, blaIMP-8, blaIMP-19, and blaKPC-2) were found in one to three isolates. Notably, class 1 integrons previously reported among clinical isolates obtained in the same regions as the present study, namely, In477 with blaIMP-19 and In73 with blaIMP-8, were found among the Japanese and Taiwanese isolates, respectively. The results indicate that CPE with various carbapenemase-encoding genes in different genetic contexts were present in biologically treated wastewater, highlighting the need to monitor for antibiotic resistance in wastewater.
Project description:In current study, we performed a comparative study on bacterial load, total coliform counts and type of organisms present in pre- and post-treated wastewater samples from municipal wastewater treatment plant of Pune, India. In addition, we also studied the antibiotic resistance profiling and role of the selected treatment plant in spread of antibiotic resistance in the environment. Data showed that total 30 different bacterial species from 18-different genera were present in untreated wastewater while only 9 species from 6-different genera were present in post-treated effluent. Furthermore, pre-treated wastewater sample contains wide range of organisms with high levels of antibiotic resistance while bacterial load reduced drastically and pathogens were absent from post-treated effluent.
Project description:Effluents discharged from wastewater treatment plants are possible sources of pathogenic bacteria, including Escherichia coli, in the freshwater environment, and determining the possible selection of pathogens is important. This study evaluated the impact of activated sludge and physicochemical wastewater treatment processes on the prevalence of potentially virulent E. coli. A total of 719 E. coli isolates collected from four municipal plants in Québec before and after treatment were characterized by using a customized DNA microarray to determine the impact of treatment processes on the frequency of specific pathotypes and virulence genes. The percentages of potentially pathogenic E. coli isolates in the plant influents varied between 26 and 51%, and in the effluents, the percentages were 14 to 31%, for a reduction observed at all plants ranging between 14 and 45%. Pathotypes associated with extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC) were the most abundant at three of the four plants and represented 24% of all isolates, while intestinal pathogenic E. coli pathotypes (IPEC) represented 10% of the isolates. At the plant where ExPEC isolates were not the most abundant, a large number of isolates were classified as both ExPEC and IPEC; overall, 6% of the isolates were classified in both groups, with the majority being from the same plant. The reduction of the proportion of pathogenic E. coli could not be explained by the preferential loss of one virulence gene or one type of virulence factor; however, the quinolone resistance gene (qnrS) appears to enhance the loss of virulence genes, suggesting a mechanism involving the loss of pathogenicity islands.