Heavy #metal #pollution and co-selection for #antibiotic #resistance: A microbial #palaeontology approach (Environ Int., abstract)

[Source: US National Library of Medicine, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Environ Int. 2019 Aug 29;132:105117. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2019.105117. [Epub ahead of print]

Heavy metal pollution and co-selection for antibiotic resistance: A microbial palaeontology approach.

Dickinson AW1, Power A2, Hansen MG3, Brandt KK3, Piliposian G4, Appleby P4, O’Neill PA5, Jones RT6, Sierocinski P7, Koskella B8, Vos M9.

Author information: 1 College of Life and Environmental Science, University of Exeter, Penryn, UK; UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK. Electronic address: A.W.Dickinson@sms.ed.ac.uk. 2 Biocatalysis Centre, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK. 3 Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Thorvaldsensvej 40, DK-1871 Frederiksberg, Denmark. 4 Department of Mathematical Sciences, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK. 5 Welcome Trust Biomedical Informatics Hub, Geoffrey Pope Building, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK. 6 School of Geography, College of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Exeter, Amory Building, Rennes Drive, Exeter, UK. 7 College of Life and Environmental Science, University of Exeter, Penryn, UK. 8 Department of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, USA.
9 European Centre for Environment and Human Health, College of Medicine and Health, University of Exeter, Penryn, UK.

 

Abstract

Frequent and persistent heavy metal pollution has profound effects on the composition and activity of microbial communities. Heavy metals select for metal resistance but can also co-select for resistance to antibiotics, which is a global health concern. We here document metal concentration, metal resistance and antibiotic resistance along a sediment archive from a pond in the North West of the United Kingdom covering over a century of anthropogenic pollution. We specifically focus on zinc, as it is a ubiquitous and toxic metal contaminant known to co-select for antibiotic resistance, to assess the impact of temporal variation in heavy metal pollution on microbial community diversity and to quantify the selection effects of differential heavy metal exposure on antibiotic resistance. Zinc concentration and bioavailability was found to vary over the core, likely reflecting increased industrialisation around the middle of the 20th century. Zinc concentration had a significant effect on bacterial community composition, as revealed by a positive correlation between the level of zinc tolerance in culturable bacteria and zinc concentration. The proportion of zinc resistant isolates was also positively correlated with resistance to three clinically relevant antibiotics (oxacillin, cefotaxime and trimethoprim). The abundance of the class 1 integron-integrase gene, intI1, marker for anthropogenic pollutants correlated with the prevalence of zinc- and cefotaxime resistance but not with oxacillin and trimethoprim resistance. Our microbial palaeontology approach reveals that metal-contaminated sediments from depths that pre-date the use of antibiotics were enriched in antibiotic resistant bacteria, demonstrating the pervasive effects of metal-antibiotic co-selection in the environment.

Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

KEYWORDS: Antimicrobial resistance; Co-selection; Cross-resistance; Metal pollution; Sediment archive

PMID: 31473413 DOI: 10.1016/j.envint.2019.105117

Keywords: Antibiotics; Drugs Resistance; Toxic chemicals; Environmental pollution; UK.

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#Ambient #Particulate #Air #Pollution and Daily #Mortality in 652 Cities (N Engl J Med., abstract)

[Source: The New England Journal of Medicine, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Ambient Particulate Air Pollution and Daily Mortality in 652 Cities

Cong Liu, M.S., Renjie Chen, Ph.D., Francesco Sera, Ph.D., Ana M. Vicedo-Cabrera, Ph.D., Yuming Guo, Ph.D., Shilu Tong, Ph.D., Micheline S.Z.S. Coelho, Ph.D., Paulo H.N. Saldiva, Ph.D., Eric Lavigne, Ph.D., Patricia Matus, Ph.D., Nicolas Valdes Ortega, M.Sc., Samuel Osorio Garcia, Ph.D., et al.

 

Abstract

BACKGROUND

The systematic evaluation of the results of time-series studies of air pollution is challenged by differences in model specification and publication bias.

METHODS

We evaluated the associations of inhalable particulate matter (PM) with an aerodynamic diameter of 10 μm or less (PM10) and fine PM with an aerodynamic diameter of 2.5 μm or less (PM2.5) with daily all-cause, cardiovascular, and respiratory mortality across multiple countries or regions. Daily data on mortality and air pollution were collected from 652 cities in 24 countries or regions. We used overdispersed generalized additive models with random-effects meta-analysis to investigate the associations. Two-pollutant models were fitted to test the robustness of the associations. Concentration–response curves from each city were pooled to allow global estimates to be derived.

RESULTS

On average, an increase of 10 μg per cubic meter in the 2-day moving average of PM10 concentration, which represents the average over the current and previous day, was associated with increases of 0.44% (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.39 to 0.50) in daily all-cause mortality, 0.36% (95% CI, 0.30 to 0.43) in daily cardiovascular mortality, and 0.47% (95% CI, 0.35 to 0.58) in daily respiratory mortality. The corresponding increases in daily mortality for the same change in PM2.5 concentration were 0.68% (95% CI, 0.59 to 0.77), 0.55% (95% CI, 0.45 to 0.66), and 0.74% (95% CI, 0.53 to 0.95). These associations remained significant after adjustment for gaseous pollutants. Associations were stronger in locations with lower annual mean PM concentrations and higher annual mean temperatures. The pooled concentration–response curves showed a consistent increase in daily mortality with increasing PM concentration, with steeper slopes at lower PM concentrations.

CONCLUSIONS

Our data show independent associations between short-term exposure to PM10 and PM2.5 and daily all-cause, cardiovascular, and respiratory mortality in more than 600 cities across the globe. These data reinforce the evidence of a link between mortality and PM concentration established in regional and local studies. (Funded by the National Natural Science Foundation of China and others.)

Keywords: Environmental pollution; Society.

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Longitudinal Comparison of #Bacterial Diversity and #Antibiotic #Resistance Genes in #NYC #Sewage (mSystems, abstract)

[Source: US National Library of Medicine, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

mSystems. 2019 Aug 6;4(4). pii: e00327-19. doi: 10.1128/mSystems.00327-19.

Longitudinal Comparison of Bacterial Diversity and Antibiotic Resistance Genes in New York City Sewage.

Joseph SM1,2, Battaglia T3, Maritz JM2, Carlton JM2, Blaser MJ3,4.

Author information: 1 New York University School of Medicine, New York, New York, USA susanj13@gmail.com. 2 Center for Genomics and Systems Biology, Department of Biology, New York University, New York, New York, USA. 3 New York University School of Medicine, New York, New York, USA. 4 Center for Advanced Biotechnology and Medicine, Rutgers University, Piscataway, New Jersey, USA.

 

Abstract

Bacterial resistance to antibiotics is a pressing health issue around the world, not only in health care settings but also in the community and environment, particularly in crowded urban populations. The aim of our work was to characterize the microbial populations in sewage and the spread of antibiotic resistance within New York City (NYC). Here, we investigated the structure of the microbiome and the prevalence of antibiotic resistance genes in raw sewage samples collected from the fourteen NYC Department of Environmental Protection wastewater treatment plants, distributed across the five NYC boroughs. Sewage, a direct output of anthropogenic activity and a reservoir of microbes, provides an ecological niche to examine the spread of antibiotic resistance. Taxonomic diversity analysis revealed a largely similar and stable bacterial population structure across all the samples, which was found to be similar over three time points in an annual cycle, as well as in the five NYC boroughs. All samples were positive for the presence of the seven antibiotic resistance genes tested, based on real-time quantitative PCR assays, with higher levels observed for tetracycline resistance genes at all time points. For five of the seven genes, abundances were significantly higher in May than in February and August. This study provides characteristics of the NYC sewage resistome in the context of the overall bacterial populations.

 

IMPORTANCE

Urban sewage or wastewater is a diverse source of bacterial growth, as well as a hot spot for the development of environmental antibiotic resistance, which can in turn influence the health of the residents of the city. As part of a larger study to characterize the urban New York City microbial metagenome, we collected raw sewage samples representing three seasonal time points spanning the five boroughs of NYC and went on to characterize the microbiome and the presence of a range of antibiotic resistance genes. Through this study, we have established a baseline microbial population and antibiotic resistance abundance in NYC sewage which can prove to be very useful in studying the load of antibiotic usage, as well as for developing effective measures in antibiotic stewardship.

Copyright © 2019 Joseph et al.

KEYWORDS: New York City; antibiotic resistance; microbiome; sewage

PMID: 31387933 DOI: 10.1128/mSystems.00327-19

Keywords: Antibiotics; Drugs Resistance; Environmental pollution; USA; NYC.

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#Airborne concentrations and chemical considerations of #radioactive #ruthenium from an undeclared major nuclear release in 2017 (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, abstract)

[Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Airborne concentrations and chemical considerations of radioactive ruthenium from an undeclared major nuclear release in 2017

O. Masson, G. Steinhauser, D. Zok, O. Saunier, H. Angelov, D. Babić, V. Bečková, J. Bieringer, M. Bruggeman, C. I. Burbidge, S. Conil, A. Dalheimer, L.-E. De Geer, A. de Vismes Ott, K. Eleftheriadis, S. Estier, H. Fischer, M. G. Garavaglia, C. Gasco Leonarte, K. Gorzkiewicz, D. Hainz, I. Hoffman, M. Hýža, K. Isajenko, T. Karhunen, J. Kastlander, C. Katzlberger, R. Kierepko, G.-J. Knetsch, J. Kövendiné Kónyi, M. Lecomte, J. W. Mietelski, P. Min, B. Møller, S. P. Nielsen, J. Nikolic, L. Nikolovska, I. Penev, B. Petrinec, P. P. Povinec, R. Querfeld, O. Raimondi, D. Ransby, W. Ringer, O. Romanenko, R. Rusconi, P. R. J. Saey, V. Samsonov, B. Šilobritienė, E. Simion, C. Söderström, M. Šoštarić, T. Steinkopff, P. Steinmann, I. Sýkora, L. Tabachnyi, D. Todorovic, E. Tomankiewicz, J. Tschiersch, R. Tsibranski, M. Tzortzis, K. Ungar, A. Vidic, A. Weller, H. Wershofen, P. Zagyvai, T. Zalewska, D. Zapata García, and B. Zorko

PNAS first published July 26, 2019 / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1907571116

Edited by John H. Seinfeld, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA, and approved June 21, 2019 (received for review May 2, 2019)

 

Significance

A massive atmospheric release of radioactive 106Ru occurred in Eurasia in 2017, which must have been caused by a sizeable, yet undeclared nuclear accident. This work presents the most compelling monitoring dataset of this release, comprising 1,100 atmospheric and 200 deposition data points from the Eurasian region. The data suggest a release from a nuclear reprocessing facility located in the Southern Urals, possibly from the Mayak nuclear complex. A release from a crashed satellite as well as a release on Romanian territory (despite high activity concentrations) can be excluded. The model age of the radioruthenium supports the hypothesis that fuel was reprocessed ≤2 years after discharge, possibly for the production of a high-specific activity 144Ce source for a neutrino experiment in Italy.

 

Abstract

In October 2017, most European countries reported unique atmospheric detections of aerosol-bound radioruthenium (106Ru). The range of concentrations varied from some tenths of µBq·m−3 to more than 150 mBq·m−3. The widespread detection at such considerable (yet innocuous) levels suggested a considerable release. To compare activity reports of airborne 106Ru with different sampling periods, concentrations were reconstructed based on the most probable plume presence duration at each location. Based on airborne concentration spreading and chemical considerations, it is possible to assume that the release occurred in the Southern Urals region (Russian Federation). The 106Ru age was estimated to be about 2 years. It exhibited highly soluble and less soluble fractions in aqueous media, high radiopurity (lack of concomitant radionuclides), and volatility between 700 and 1,000 °C, thus suggesting a release at an advanced stage in the reprocessing of nuclear fuel. The amount and isotopic characteristics of the radioruthenium release may indicate a context with the production of a large 144Ce source for a neutrino experiment.

environmental radioactivity – ruthenium – nuclear forensics – environmental release – accidental release

Keywords: Environmental Pollution; Radiations; Radionuclides; Italy; Russia.

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In situ #measurement of #cesium-137 #contamination in #fruits from the northern #Marshall Islands (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, abstract)

[Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

In situ measurement of cesium-137 contamination in fruits from the northern Marshall Islands

Carlisle E. W. Topping, Maveric K. I. L. Abella, Michael E. Berkowitz, Monica Rouco Molina, Ivana Nikolić-Hughes, Emlyn W. Hughes, and Malvin A. Ruderman

PNAS first published July 15, 2019 / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1903481116

Contributed by Malvin A. Ruderman, May 15, 2019 (sent for review March 5, 2019; reviewed by Paul Cadden-Zimansky and Katrin Karbstein)

Related Articles: Radiation maps of ocean sediment from the Castle Bravo crater – Jul 10, 2019; Background gamma radiation and soil activity measurements in the northern Marshall Islands – Jul 10, 2019

 

Significance

The United States performed nuclear testing on Bikini and Enewetak Atolls in the northern Marshall Islands between 1946 and 1958. Fallout from the largest test Bravo, detonated in 1954, spread over a large area, exposing to radiation not only land and ocean but also Marshallese people living in neighboring atolls, including Rongelap and Utirik. Cesium-137, present in the fallout, has a half-life of approximately 30 y and is readily absorbed by food crops, thus representing a health hazard for island inhabitants. In situ measurements of cesium-137 content were made for fruits from 11 islands on four atolls. Contamination remains above limits set by international safety standards in some measured fruits, and several islands display contamination from this human-made radionuclide.

 

Abstract

Radioactive contamination of fruits in the northern Marshall Islands, resulting from the US nuclear weapons testing program in the 1940s and 1950s, is still a human health concern, in particular pertaining to island population resettlement and the economic benefit from farming. Over 200 fruits, primarily coconuts and pandanus, were collected on 11 islands from four atolls in the northern Marshall Islands in 2017. The energy spectra from nuclear gamma decays were measured on a research vessel for each fruit in situ. From these recordings, the level of cesium-137 (137Cs) contamination was determined for individual fruits. Comparisons of the results are made to past studies and international food safety standards. There is a broad distribution of values, ranging from below detectable radiation levels to relatively high levels; safety concerns are largest for Bikini Island. A noticeable fraction of fruits from Bikini have significantly higher levels of 137Cs contamination compared with those from all other measured islands.

Marshall Islands – food – radiation – cesium-137 – Bikini

Keywords: Environmental pollution; Environmental disasters; Radiations; Radionuclides; Marhsall Islands; Food safety.

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#Radiation #maps of #ocean #sediment from the Castle Bravo #crater (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, abstract)

[Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Radiation maps of ocean sediment from the Castle Bravo crater

Emlyn W. Hughes, Monica Rouco Molina, Maveric K. I. L. Abella, Ivana Nikolić-Hughes, and Malvin A. Ruderman

PNAS first published July 15, 2019 / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1903478116

Contributed by Malvin A. Ruderman, May 14, 2019 (sent for review March 1, 2019; reviewed by David Kawall and Yury G. Kolomensky)

Related Articles: In situ measurement of cesium-137 contamination in fruits from the northern Marshall Islands – Jul 10, 2019; Background gamma radiation and soil activity measurements in the northern Marshall Islands – Jul 10, 2019

 

Significance

High-yield thermonuclear explosions cause enormous radioactive contamination to the environment. These “hydrogen bombs,” when tested on small islands in the ocean, vaporize the land and produce radionuclides that settle in the ocean sediment. Even decades later, significant contamination may remain in the sediment surface and deep into the sediment layers. Measuring the radioactive contamination of the crater sediment is a first step in assessing the overall impact of nuclear weapons testing on the ocean ecosystems. We find radiation levels orders of magnitude above background for plutonium-(239,240), americium-241, and bismuth-207 in the top 25 cm of sediment across the entire Bravo bomb crater, the location of the largest aboveground US nuclear weapons test.

 

Abstract

On March 1, 1954, the United States conducted its largest thermonuclear weapon test in Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands; the detonation was code-named “Castle Bravo.” Radioactive deposits in the ocean sediment at the bomb crater are widespread and high levels of contamination remain today. One hundred thirty cores were collected from the top 25 cm of surface sediment at ocean depths approaching 60 m over a ∼2-km2 area, allowing for a presentation of radiation maps of the Bravo crater site. Radiochemical analyses were performed on the following radionuclides: plutonium-(239,240), plutonium-238, americium-241, bismuth-207, and cesium-137. Large values of plutonium-(239,240), americium-241, and bismuth-207 are found. Comparisons are made to core sample results from other areas in the northern Marshall Islands.

Bravo crater – Bikini Island – cesium-137 – ocean sediment – plutonium

Keywords: Environmental pollution; Environmental disasters; Radiations; Radionuclides; Marshall Islands.

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Background #gamma #radiation and #soil activity #measurements in the northern #Marshall Islands (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, abstract)

[Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, full page: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]

Background gamma radiation and soil activity measurements in the northern Marshall Islands

Maveric K. I. L. Abella, Monica Rouco Molina, Ivana Nikolić-Hughes, Emlyn W. Hughes, and Malvin A. Ruderman

PNAS first published July 15, 2019 / DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1903421116

Contributed by Malvin A. Ruderman, May 15, 2019 (sent for review March 1, 2019; reviewed by Joanna Kiryluk and Ernst Sichtermann)

Related Articles: Radiation maps of ocean sediment from the Castle Bravo crater – Jul 10, 2019; In situ measurement of cesium-137 contamination in fruits from the northern Marshall Islands – Jul 10, 2019

 

Significance

From 1946 to 1958, the United States tested 67 nuclear weapons in the Marshall Islands, a remote constellation of atolls in the Pacific Ocean that was then a US trust territory. Two atolls, Bikini and Enewetak, were used as ground zero for the tests, which caused unprecedented environmental contamination and, for the indigenous peoples of the islands, long-term adverse health effects. In addition to the populations of Bikini and Enewetak, the people of Rongelap and Utirik were also affected by radioactive fallout from the largest nuclear test the United States has ever conducted, the Bravo test held March 1, 1954. This article presents a picture of current radiological conditions by examining external gamma radiation and soil radionuclide activity concentrations.

 

Abstract

We report on measurements of external gamma radiation on 9 islands in 4 atolls in the northern Marshall Islands, all of which were affected by the US nuclear testing program from 1946 to 1958 (Enjebi, Ikuren, and Japtan in Enewetak Atoll; Bikini and Enyu in Bikini Atoll; Naen in Rongelap Atoll; and Aon, Elluk, and Utirik in Utirik Atoll). We also report americium-241, cesium-137, plutonium-238, and plutonium-239,240 activity concentrations in the soil samples for 11 islands in 4 northern atolls (Enewetak, Japtan, Medren, and Runit in Enewetak Atoll; Bikini and Enyu in Bikini Atoll; Naen and Rongelap in Rongelap Atoll; and Aon, Elluk, and Utirik in Utirik Atoll) and from Majuro Island, Majuro Atoll in the southern Marshall Islands. Our results show low external gamma radiation levels on some islands in the Enewetak Atoll and Utirik Atoll, and elevated levels on Enjebi Island in the Enewetak Atoll, on Bikini Atoll, and on Naen Island in the Rongelap Atoll. We perform ordinary kriging on external gamma radiation measurements to provide interpolated maps. We find that radionuclides are absent from all Majuro soil samples, and that they are present at highest activity concentrations in samples from Runit and Enjebi islands (Enewetak Atoll), Bikini Island (Bikini Atoll), and Naen Island (Rongelap Atoll). We contextualize all results by making comparisons between islands and to various standards, as well as to regions of the world affected by nuclear accidents. We also discuss implications for informed decision-making by the Marshallese and local atoll governments and their people on issues pertaining to island resettlement.

Marshall Islands – cesium-137 – external gamma radiation – soil activity – plutonium

Keywords: Environmental pollution; Environmental disasters; Radiations; Radionuclides; Marshall Islands.

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