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Metagenomics of water supply reservoirs of Sao Paulo Metropolitan Area

Grant number: 22/03548-6
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: November 01, 2022 - October 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Chemistry
Principal Investigator:Renato Sanches Freire
Grantee:Renato Sanches Freire
Host Institution: Instituto de Química (IQ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers:Cassius Vinicius Stevani ; Etelvino José Henriques Bechara ; João Carlos Setubal


Microbial communities play critical roles in nutrient cycles; thus they are important in the development and maintenance of aquatic food chains. Metagenomics allows to identify the presence of microorganisms of interest, cultivable and non-cultivable. This project proposes an unprecedented metagenomic study of the main microbiomes of the most important water reservoirs of São Paulo metropolitan region (Cantareira, Alto Tietê, Guarapiranga and Rio Grande), which are responsible for supplying clean water to more than 20 million people. The project will evaluate the diversity of microorganisms in water reservoirs, which can be associated with the production of odor/taste-causing substances and toxins - especially those with public and environmental health interest (mainly cyanobacteria). Moreover, the effect of the environmental conditions on the development/balance of species in natural water microbiomes will be addressed, seeking to correlate the presence of microorganisms of interest with physicochemical parameters. This information can contribute to the prediction of cyanobacterial or pathogenic bacteria blooms as a function of the balance among the different species of microorganisms in the microbiome, the environmental and physicochemical parameters. Hence, it is expected to contribute to the development of tools that can contribute to the management of reservoirs and, ideally, improve the quality of water used for human consumption. (AU)

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