Bioresource Technology, Vol.267, 303-310, 2018
Response of antibiotic and heavy metal resistance genes to two different temperature sequences in anaerobic digestion of waste activated sludge
Response of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) and heavy metal resistance genes (HMRGs) to two different temperature sequences (i.e., mesophilic-thermophilic and thermophilic-mesophilic) were investigated. Higher removal of total ARGs (twenty-one targeted subtypes) and HMRGs (three targeted subtypes) was achieved by the mesophilic-thermophilic sequence than by the thermophilic-mesophilic sequence. The sequence of mesophilic-thermophilic showed the highest removal of total ARGs, but the sequence of thermophilic-mesophilic proved more suitable for removal of class 1 integrons (intI1). Correlation analysis indicated that intI1 correlated significantly with tetG, tetQ, tetX, sul2, aac(6 ')-lb-cr, bla(TEM), ermB and floR. High-throughput sequencing revealed that the mesophilic-thermophilic sequence TPAD removed more human bacterial pathogens (HBPs) than did the thermophilic-mesophilic sequence. Also, significantly positive correlation was observed between ARGs and HBPs. For instance, Mycoplasma pneumonia showed significantly positive correlation with several ARGs including tetE, tetQ, tetX, tetZ, sul1, sul2, aac(6 ')-lb-cr and floR.