Monitoring of Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Wastewater and Surface Waterbodies

2019 - 2021

Bundesministerium für Nachhaltigkeit und Tourismus

Bundesministerium für Landwirtschaft, Regionen und Tourismus 

Contact Person:
Norbert Kreuzinger, Julia Vierheilig

Project Staff:
Irina Dielacher, Amandine Masseron, Elena Radu, Katarzyna Anna Slipko 

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Final report, opens an external URL in a new window

National Partners:
Markus Wögerbauer & Team (AGES - Österreichische Agentur für Gesundheit und Ernährungssicherheit GmbH)

Irina Korschinek & Team (Ingenetix GesmbH)

Brief information on the project

The MARGINS-II project aims to determine the background contamination of wastewater and surface waters with antibiotic-resistant bacteria (ARBs) and antibiotic-resistant genes (ARGs). For Austria, isolated studies from random samples or individual wastewater treatment plants are available but no systematically collected data. The associated project MARGINS-I is complementary dealing with the identification and quantification of the antibiotic resistance gene background load of soils in Austria.

The targeted investigation program is primarily intended to provide an initial survey of the situation for Austria. The findings from both MARGINS projects will help to reduce the risk of transferring antibiotic resistance (AR) from the environment to bacteria relevant to human and veterinary medicine. The results obtained will provide the basis for evidence-based advice to risk managers and possible routine ARG monitoring of the ecosystems studied in the future. These objectives are in line with the "One Health" approach to antibiotic resistance reduction formulated by the European Commission and are consistent with the priorities of the National Action Plan on Antibiotic Resistance (NAP-AMR) in Austria.