Publication Date

Spring 5-2021


School of Health Sciences


Biology: Biomedical Sciences


Freshwater microbiome, pesticides, microbial resistance


Ecology and Evolutionary Biology | Environmental Microbiology and Microbial Ecology


Pesticides are used prevalently throughout the United States and can negatively affect non-target organisms. Rain run-off can move multiple pesticides into freshwater ecosystems and bring them in contact with non-target organisms that have variable tolerances to pollution. This study seeks to improve our understanding of how an acute exposure to a combination of pesticides may restructure microbial communities by examining the microbiome before and after a 48-hour exposure to 2000 ppb of herbicides (glyphosate, atrazine, and 2,4-D). Pesticide exposure did not significantly alter the alpha or beta diversity of the sample types, which demonstrates the ability of freshwater microbiomes to resist acute pesticide disturbance. This finding is important when considering questions of freshwater conservation.