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Table 9 Summary of results on wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) ability to reduce antibiotic-resistant bacteria (ARB), antibiotic resistance genes (ARG), mobile genetic elements (MGE) in studies with definitively/probably high validity level (n = 118/324). Numbers reported in each column are independent of each other

From: How effective are strategies to control the dissemination of antibiotic resistance in the environment? A systematic review

 Concentration or absolute abundanceProportion or relative abundance
ARB (measured in 54 studies)
Decrease of all ATBR markersan = 25n = 11
Decrease of some ATBR markersn = 2n = 19
Increase of all ATBR markers or no variationbn = 1n = 10
Not studied or not reportedn = 26n = 14
ARG (measured in 61 studies)
Decrease of all ATBR markersan = 33n = 6
Decrease of some ATBR markersn = 14n = 18
Increase of all ATBR markers or no variationbn = 3n = 3
Not studied or not reportedn = 11n = 34
MGE (measured in 43 studies)
Decrease of all ATBR markersan = 28n = 9
Decrease of some ATBR markersn = 3n = 2
Increase of all ATBR markers or no variationbn = 4n = 3
Not studied or not reportedn = 8n = 29
  1. acorresponds to wished result, i.e., decrease of ATBR after WWTP
  2. bcorresponds to unwished outputs, i.e., increase and/or no variation of ATBR after WWTP