Unravelling the role of microorganisms in arsenic mobilization using metagenomic techniques

J. R. Lloyd, E. T. Gnanaprakasam, N. Bassil, B. E. van Dongen, L. A. Richards, D. A. Polya, B. J. Mailloux, B. C. Bostick, A. van Geen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The contamination of groundwaters, abstracted for drinking and irrigation, by sediment-derived arsenic, threatens the health of tens of millions worldwide. Microbial processes are accepted as playing a key role in arsenic mobilisation from sediments into groundwaters, but the precise biogeochemical mechanisms remain a subject of debate. A combination of field investigations, coupled to laboratory experimentation with sediment samples using “microcosm” approaches, has provided a significant body of evidence supporting a key role for anaerobic metal-reducing bacteria in the reductive mobilization of arsenic in aquifers in West Bengal, Cambodia, Vietnam and Bangladesh. The application of high-throughput next generation sequencing, combined with metagenomic reconstructions and other “omics” techniques from the life sciences is shedding new insight into the processes at play, and identifying new mircoorganisms and coupled biogeochemical processes that control the solubility of arsenic in Asian aquifers.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnvironmental Arsenic in a Changing World (AS 2018)
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 7th International Congress and Exhibition on Arsenic in the Environment, Beijing, P.R. China, July 1-6, 2018
EditorsYong-Guan Zhu, Huaming Guo, Prosun Bhattacharya, Jochen Bundschuh, Arslan Ahmad, Ravi Naidu
Place of PublicationLeiden, Netherlands
Number of pages2
ISBN (Electronic)9781351046633
Publication statusPublished - 3 Sept 2019

Publication series

NameArsenic in the Environment. Proceedings.
ISSN (Print)2154-6568
ISSN (Electronic)2372-3599

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Dalton Nuclear Institute
  • Manchester Environmental Research Institute


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