Wastewater also referred to as sewage hosts diverse groups of microbial communities that are responsible for the biodegradation of the organic matter content present. In this study, Researchers from the University of Embu and The International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) explored the bacterial community diversity and structure within rivers, treated and untreated wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) discharging into Lake Victoria. Results showed that key groups of bacteria involved in denitrification and nitrate reduction were abundant across the samples although microbial diversity was low. However, Betaproteobacteria and Alphaproteobacteria groups were enriched in freshwater. Several bacterial isolates that could perform heterotrophic nitrification and aerobic denitrification were isolated and characterized. The bacterial isolates that could carry out denitrification are good candidates for application in bioremediation of polluted waters.
This work is part of an MSc research project by Mr. James Murimi Wachira. He is being Supervised by Prof. Romano Mwirichia (University of Embu), Dr. Moses Thuita (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture) and Dr. Cargele Masso (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture).
The Research Project was supported by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture through a Graduate Research Fellowship to Mr. James Murimi Wachira. The findings have been published in Current Microbiology (Springer) under the title “Community Structure of Nitrifying and Denitrifying Bacteria from Effluents Discharged into Lake Victoria, Kenya” (https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00284-022-02950-1)