According to an analysis of the Ganges River in India, there is a proliferation of drug resistant super bug bacteria present in the water.
According to an analysis of the Ganges River in India, there is a proliferation of drug resistant bacteria present in the water.
The Ganges is sacred to the Hindu religious tradition, and hundreds of thousands of pilgrims visit the river every year to bathe in what they believe to be a spiritually restorative river current.
Researchers from Newcastle University in the United Kingdom working with the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi took samples of water and sediment from seven locations along the river at different times of year, including two pilgrimage sites in the Upper Ganges.
The study focused on how drug resistant bacteria can become so prevalent in certain areas with a high level of human activity.
Professor David Graham, an environmental engineer at Newcastle University, who worked on the study is quoted as saying: “The specific resistance gene we studied, called blaNDM-1, causes extreme multi-resistance in many bacteria, therefore we must understand how this gene spreads in the environment.”
The levels of certain bacteria were reportedly found to be 60 times higher during pilgrimage season when more untreated waste finds its way into the river.