Metagenomics-based evaluation of groundwater microbial profiles in response to treated wastewater discharge.


Water Desalination and Reuse Center (WDRC), Biological and Environmental Sciences and Engineering Division (BESE), King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Thuwal, Jeddah, 23955-6900, Saudi Arabia. Electronic address: [Email]


This study aims to demonstrate the use of metagenomics to assess groundwater quality. Metagenomics revealed a lower alpha diversity for both bacteria and virus in wastewater-exposed groundwater compared to the upstream controls. An increase in the relative abundance of Planctomycetes and Picornaviridae was also observed in wastewater-exposed groundwater. However, comparison of antibiotic resistome cannot clearly differentiate wastewater-exposed groundwater from control. Findings suggest that metagenomics can detect selected microbial signatures indicative of treated wastewater discharge.


Aquifer recharge,Groundwater quality,Shotgun metagenomics,Water reuse,

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