ANtibioticS and mobile resistance elements in WastEwater Reuse applicaitons: risks and innovative solutions
2017 - 2019
Marie Skłodowska-Curie action (MSCA) - Innovative training networks (ITN)
EU H2020 - MSCA-ITN grant no 675530
Brief information on the project
In response to the increasing problem of water shortage, treated urban wastewater is currently widely reused, considered to be a reliable alternative water source. Regions inhabited by more than 40% of the world's population already are in the situation where water demand exceeds supply. The ever-increasing shortage of water, the increasing needs for food due to the expanding world population, and for irrigation water, both in respect to good quality and quantity, render reuse a 'sine qua non' condition. Currently, sustainable and safe urban water cycles are of high priority on the policy agendas of many European countries and elsewhere.
The European Commission has started working towards the preparation of a European Directive on Wastewater Reuse, while the Environmental Monitoring Strategy Team of the European Committee on Standardisation (CEN/SABE) has published in 2014, a Strategic Position Paper on “Wastewater reuse and implications for future standardisation”.
The main objective is to develop well-trained and scientifically-creative Early-Stage Researchers (ESRs) through innovative PhD projects to unravel the highly complex factors driving antibiotics and antibiotic-resistant bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes (A&ARB&ARG) propagation in the framework of urban wastewater reuse, in order to assess the relevant environmental/public health risks, able to face current and future challenges and to convert knowledge and ideas into products and services for economic and social benefit.
The Scientific Research Objectives are:
- To provide a solid approach for effect analysis concerning wastewater reuse in a European regulatory and monitoring context
- To develop novel multidisciplinary approaches/techniques to enhance the diagnostic, mitigation and prevention capacity of antibiotics and antibiotic-resistant bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes (A&ARB&ARG) propagation, with cost-efficiency and wide applicability;
- State-of-the-art of wastewater, soil and plant-associated microbiology, with emphasis on the innovative diagnosis of antibiotics and antibiotic-resistant bacteria and antibiotic resistance genes (A&ARB&ARG);
- Comprehensive understanding of horizontal gene transfer dynamics in environmental microbiome as correlated to different wastewater treatments and environmental conditions;
- Novel endpoints using advanced bioassays that can be applied to assess the effects that antibiotics and their transformation products (TPs) resulting from conventional/innovative treatment may induce in the environment;
- Assessment of transformation products (TPs) of antibiotics formed during the oxidative treatment of the wastewater for their capacity to select antibiotic resistance (AR) in the environment.