About the Project
Microbial communities will be sampled throughout the wastewater treatment process from arrival on site to discharge and in digestate and soils where this material is used to determine whether these drugs result in additional antimicrobial resistance (AMR) within environmental microbial communities. This project will utilise a range of molecular techniques to determine the concentrations, fate and influence of discharged antibiotics on the microbial communities that come into contact with this disposal route. Antibiotic concentrations will be measured using state-of-the-art mass spectrometry methods and the prevalence of antimicrobial resistance genes assessed using qPCR and NGS methods. Different wastewater treatment methods will be assessed for their effects on antibiotic removal and potential to propagate AMR genes through microbial populations.
Li, Y., Sallach, J.B., Zhang, W., Boyd, S.A., Li, H. 2018. Insight into the distribution of pharmaceuticals in soil-water-plant systems. Water Research. 152: 38-46 Williams-Nguyen, J., Sallach, J.B., Bartelt-Hunt, S.L., Boxall, A.B., Durso, L.M., McLain, J.E., Singer, R.S., Snow, D.D., Zilles, J.L. 2016. Antibiotics and antibiotic resistance in agroecosystems: State of the Science. Journal of Environmental Quality. 45: 394-406. Sallach, J.B., Zhang, Y., Snow, D.D., Hodges, L., Li, X., Bartelt-Hunt, S.L. 2015. Concomitant uptake of antimicrobials and Salmonella to soil and into lettuce following wastewater irrigation. Journal of Environmental Pollution. 197: 269-277. Tao, B., Alessi, A., Zhang, Y., Heaven, S., Chong, J.P.J., Banks, C. 2019 Simultaneous biomethanisation of endogenous and imported CO2 in organically loaded anaerobic digesters. Applied Energy. 247: 670-681. Alessi, A., Redeker, K.R., Chong, J.P.J. 2018. A practical introduction to microbial molecular ecology through the use of isolation chips. Ecology and Evolution. 8: 12286-12298.
The Department of Biology at the University of York is committed to recruiting extraordinary future scientists regardless of age, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, disability, sexual orientation or career pathway to date. We understand that commitment and excellence can be shown in many ways and have built our recruitment process to reflect this. We welcome applicants from all backgrounds, particularly those underrepresented in science, who have curiosity, creativity and a drive to learn new skills.
Tax-free annual stipend at UKRI rate (£15,285 for 2020/21)
UK tuition fees (£4,473 for 2021/22)
Research support and training charges (RSTC)
Only UK students are eligible for this funding scheme.
A number of projects are competing for this funding scheme, each will nominate their strongest candidate to a Selection Panel. Nominated candidates will be invited for interview but only one student will be offered the studentship.
START DATE: 1st October 2021
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