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Student BIOS

KOH Xiu Pei

PhD Candidate in Environmental Science, Policy and Management

MSc. of Science (by Research), University of Malaya

Email: xpkoh@ust.hk

Supervisor:  Prof. LAU Stanley       Co-Supervisor: Prof. KWAN Joseph

Research Topic  
Antibiotic resistance in aquatic environments
Keywords  
antibiotic resistance, environment
Abstract  

Release of clinically relevant antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) and antibiotic resistance bacteria (ARB) from anthropogenic sources into the environment especially water bodies, coupled with abuse of antibiotics in human and animals, is a public health concern. ARB in the environment may be potential public health risk as their ARGs can be transferred to other bacterial population through horizontal gene transfer (HGT). In this study, we will focus on ARGs that are transferable through HGT. These genes are of more public health importance and clinical relevance, as they can be taken up by other bacterial population and therefore can spread across bacterial communities. The objectives of this study are (i) to investigate the resistome of aquatic environment (ii) to explore the use of genes that are related to antibiotic resistance to detect anthropogenic pollution, and (iii) to determine the HGT rate of ARGs under different selective pressure. Understanding factors affecting the spread of antibiotic resistance in water will help discover potential points of control where effective intervention could take place. 

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