Antibiotic resistance (AR) is a growing health concern worldwide, and the Arctic represents an understudied region in terms of AR. This study aimed to quantify AR genes from effluent released from a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) in Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada, thus creating a baseline reference for future evaluations. Water, sediment, and truncate softshell clam (Mya truncata) tissue samples were compared from the wastewater, the receiving environment of Frobisher Bay, and nearby undisturbed freshwaters. The pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) atenolol, carbamazepine, metoprolol, naproxen, sulfapyridine, and trimethoprim were found in the wastewater, but the PPCPs were undetectable in the receiving environment. However, the relative abundances of ARGs were significantly higher in wastewater than in the receiving environment or reference sites. Abundances did not significantly differ in Frobisher Bay compared to undisturbed reference sites. ARGs in clams near the WWTP had similar relative abundances as those from pristine areas. The lack of ARG detection is likely due to Frobisher Bay tides flushing inputs to levels below detection. These data suggest that the WWTP infrastructure does not influence the receiving environment based on the measured parameters; more importantly, further research must elucidate the impact and fate of AR and PPCPs in Arctic communities.
|Number of pages||9|
|Early online date||26 Jul 2023|
|Publication status||E-pub ahead of print - 26 Jul 2023|
- antibiotic resistance
- Canadian Arctic