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Abundance and removal of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) in the rearing environments of intensive shrimp aquaculture in South China

Wang, Linglong, Su, Haochang, Hu, Xiaojuan, Xu, Yu, Xu, Wujie, Huang, Xiaoshuai, Li, Zhuojia, Cao, Yucheng, Wen, Guoliang
Journal of environmental science and health 2019 v.54 no.3 pp. 211-218
antibiotic resistance genes, environmental factors, farms, ponds, rearing, sediments, shrimp, shrimp culture, temporal variation, water treatment, China
Although research regarding antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) in aquaculture environments has gained increasing scientific interest, further studies are required to understand the abundances and removal mechanisms of ARGs during the entire rearing period of shrimp aquaculture. Thus, in this study, abundances, distributions and removal rates of ARGs in different environmental compartments of intensive shrimp farms in South China were investigated during the entire rearing period. The results indicated that sul1 and cmlA were the predominant ARGs in the water and sediment samples. Additionally, the total abundance of ARGs was higher in shrimp pond water than in the source water and farm effluent. Moreover, sediment samples indicated significantly higher ARG abundances than water samples from the shrimp ponds (Pā€‰<ā€‰0.05). Environmental factors were found to significantly affect the distribution of ARGs in shrimp rearing environments. Furthermore, stable ponds aided the removal of ARGs from shrimp pond water. This study accounted for temporal variations in ARG abundances as well as removal of ARGs in different environmental compartments during the entire shrimp rearing period. However, additional research is required to optimize the water treatment process for removal of ARGs from the aquaculture.