Bacteria with dual resistance to elevated concentrations of heavy metals and antibiotics in Nigerian Contaminated Systems

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Oyetibo, G.O.
Ilori, M.O
Adebusoye, S.A.
Obayori, O.S.
Amund, O.O
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Samples of soil, water, and sediments from industrial estates in Lagos were collected and analyzed for heavy metals and physicochemical composition. Bacteria that are resistant to elevated concentrations of metals (Cd2+,Co2+,Ni2+,Cr6+,and Hg2+)were isolated from the samples,and they were further screened for antibiotic sensitivity. The minimum tolerance concentrations(MTCs) of the isolates with dual resistance to the metals were determined. The physicochemistry of all the samples indicated were heavily polluted.Twenty-two of the 270 bacterial strains isolated showed dual resistances to antibiotics and heavy metals. The MTCs of isolates to the metals were 14 mM for Cd2+,15 mM for Co2+and Ni2+,17 mM for Cr6+, and 10 mM for Hg2+. Five strains(Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Actinomyces turicensis, Acinetobacter junni, Nocardia sp., and Micrococcus sp.) resisted all the 18 antibiotics tested. Whereas Rhodococcus sp. and Micrococcus sp. resisted 15 mM Ni2+,P. aeruginosa resisted 10 mM Co2+. To our knowledge, there has not been any report of bacterial strains resisting such high doses of metals coupled with wide range of antibiotics. Therefore, dual expressions of antibiotics and heavy-metal resistance make the isolates, potential seeds for decommissioning of sites polluted with industrial effluents rich in heavy metals, since the bacteria will be able to withstand in situ antibiosis that may prevail in such ecosystems.
Environmental Monitoring and Assessment,168(1-4):305-14