Sediment is an ideal medium for the aggregation and dissemination of antibiotics and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs). The levels of antibiotics and ARGs in Honghu Lake and East Dongting Lake of central China were investigated in this study. The concentrations of eight antibiotics (four sulfonamides and four tetracyclines) in Honghu Lake were in the range 90.00–437.43 μg kg−1 (dry weight (dw)) with mean value of 278.21 μg kg−1 dw, which was significantly higher than those in East Dongting Lake (60.02–321.04 μg kg−1 dw, mean value of 195.70 μg kg−1 dw). Among the tested three sulfonamide resistance genes (sul) and eight tetracycline resistance genes (tet), sul1, sul2, tetA, tetC, and tetM had 100 % detection frequency in sediment samples of East Dongting Lake, while only sul1, sul2, and tetC were observed in all samples of Honghu Lake. The relative abundance of sul2 was higher than that of sul1 at p < 0.05 level in both lakes. The relative abundance of tet genes in East Dongting Lake was in the following order: tetM > tetB > tetC > tetA. The relative abundance of sul1, sul2, and tetC in East Dongting Lake was significantly higher than those in Honghu Lake. The abundance of background bacteria may play an important role in the horizontal spread of sul2 and tetC genes in Honghu Lake and sul1 in East Dongting Lake, respectively. Redundancy analysis indicated that tetracyclines may play a more important role than sulfonamides in the abundance of sul1, sul2, and tetC gens in Honghu Lake and East Dongting Lake.
Sulfonamides Tetracyclines Antibiotic resistance gene Honghu lake East dongting lake
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This project was supported in part by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 31400113, 41401542), Funding Project of Sino-Africa Joint Research Center, Chinese Academy of Sciences (Y623321K01), Knowledge Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (No. Y455436K02), Youth Innovation Promotion Association of Chinese Academy of Sciences (No. 2015282), and the Hundred Talents Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Y329671K01).
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