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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2015, Article ID 974843, 7 pages
Research Article

Monitoring Antibiotic Residues and Corresponding Antibiotic Resistance Genes in an Agroecosystem

1Department of Biological Environment, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 200-701, Republic of Korea
2Department of Agronomy, Oriental Medicine Resource, Gyeongnam National University of Science and Technology, Jinju 660-758, Republic of Korea
3Department of Bio-Environmental Chemistry, Chungnam National University, Daejeon 305-764, Republic of Korea
4Department of Environmental Engineering, Kunsan National University, Kunsan 573-701, Republic of Korea
5Department of Animal Biotechnology and Environment, National Institute of Animal Science, Rural Development Administration, Suwon 441-706, Republic of Korea

Received 16 December 2014; Revised 13 February 2015; Accepted 22 February 2015

Academic Editor: Athanasios Katsoyiannis

Copyright © 2015 Yasser M. Awad et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) have been commonly reported due to the overuse worldwide of antibiotics. Antibiotic overuse disturbs the environment and threatens public human health. The objective of this study was to measure the residual concentrations of veterinary antibiotics in the tetracycline group (TCs), including tetracycline (TC) and chlortetracycline (CTC), as well as those in the sulfonamide group (SAs), including sulfamethazine (SMT), sulfamethoxazole (SMX), and sulfathiazole (STZ). We also isolated the corresponding ARGs in the agroecosystem. Four sediment samples and two rice paddy soil samples were collected from sites near a swine composting facility along the Naerincheon River in Hongcheon, Korea. High performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS) was employed with a solid-phase extraction method to measure the concentration of each antibiotic. ARGs were identified by the qualitative polymerase chain-reaction using synthetic primers. SAs and their corresponding ARGs were highly detected in sediment samples whereas TCs were not detected except for sediments sample #1. ARGs for TCs and SAs were detected in rice paddy soils, while ARGs for TCs were only found in sediment #2 and #4. Continuous monitoring of antibiotic residue and its comprehensive impact on the environment is needed to ensure environmental health.