Occurrence and distribution of antibiotics in the Swedish aquatic environment (Master)

Last changed: 29 January 2021

The overall objective of this Master thesis is to investigate and enhance our current knowledge on the presence of antibiotics in different Swedish water bodies.

In Sweden, antibiotics are the top three highly-consumed pharmaceuticals following anatomical therapeutic chemical classifications. The latest sale data showed that there were about 325 prescriptions of antibiotics among 1000 inhabitants in 2015, which was about 30% higher than the Swedish long-term target of 250 prescriptions among 1000 inhabitants per year. After human and veterinary consumption, antibiotics can be excreted (often in active form) and distribute in different environmental water bodies, such as wastewater, surface water and groundwater.

The occurrence of antibiotics in the water environment as well as their potential interaction with bacterial ecosystems implies the need of performing related environmental monitoring and risk assessment. Thus, future studies in obtaining data on the level and distribution of these compounds across different water bodies are important. Detection of antibiotics in effluents of wastewater treatment plants and recipients may further urge for testing of potential remediation techniques.

The overall objective of this Master thesis is to investigate and enhance our current knowledge on the presence of antibiotics in different Swedish water bodies. From this project, the Master student will learn skills in development and validation of analytical methods, operating advanced analytical instruments, sample preparation, and data processing. The work will be performed under the supervision of experienced environmental and analytical chemists.

Facts:

Intended as a Master thesis project in Environmental Science (30 credits/20 weeks or 60 credits/40 weeks).

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