IJERPH, Vol. 19, Pages 6253: Dynamics of a Bacterial Community in the Anode and Cathode of Microbial Fuel Cells under Sulfadiazine Pressure (International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health)
Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) could achieve the removal of antibiotics and generate power in the meantime, a process in which the bacterial community structure played a key role. Previous work has mainly focused on microbes in the anode, while their role in the cathode was seldomly mentioned. Thus, this study explored the bacterial community of both electrodes in MFCs under sulfadiazine (SDZ) pressure. The results showed that the addition of SDZ had a limited effect on the electrochemical performance, and the maximum output voltage was kept at 0.55 V. As the most abundant phylum, Proteobacteria played an important role in both the anode and cathode. Among them, Geobacter (40.30%) worked for power generation, while Xanthobacter (11.11%), Bradyrhizobium (9.04%), and Achromobacter (7.30%) functioned in SDZ removal. Actinobacteria mainly clustered in the cathode, in which Microbacterium (9.85%) was responsible for SDZ removal. Bacteroidetes, associated with the degradation of SDZ, showed no significant difference between the anode and cathode. Cathodic and part of anodic bacteria could remove SDZ efficiently in MFCs through synergistic interactions and produce metabolites for exoelectrogenic bacteria. The potential hosts of antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) presented mainly at the anode, while cathodic bacteria might be responsible for ARGs reduction. This work elucidated the role of microorganisms and their synergistic interaction in MFCs and provided a reference to generate power and remove antibiotics using MFCs.