The Effect of Antibiotics on the Respiration of Microorganism in Northern Ohio Rivers


  • David Patrick Gonia Mentor High School
  • Patricia Talarczyk Mentor High School



Antibiotics, Pollution, Respiration Rate


This experiment was conducted for the purpose of inquiring how the concentration of antibiotics, specifically Amoxicillin and Cephalexin, would affect the productivity of aquatic microorganisms within Northeastern Ohio rivers. In acknowledgment of the growing concerns over agricultural pollution, the study was devised to increase current knowledge of how the presence of antibiotics could affect aquatic microorganisms other the well-documented creation of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. In order to achieve the research goal, water was collected from a Northeastern Ohio river and then tested with various amounts of antibiotics. Over the following five days, the concentration of dissolved oxygen was measured which was used to calculate the overall rate of respiration of the sample. The overall respiration rates of the samples with Amoxicillin were 0.0369 mg/L·hr (milligram per liter per hour) with no antibiotics, 0.835 mg/L·hr with 250 mg, 1.16 mg/L·hr with 500 mg, and  0.951 mg/L·hr with 750 mg. The samples with Cephalexin yielded rates of 0.963 mg/L·hr with 250 mg, 0. mg/L·hr with 500 mg, mg/L·hr with 750 mg. These yielded R-values of 0.694 and 0.788 respectively.. This means that the null hypothesis was rejected, thus showing a statistically significant correlation. However, the alternate hypothesis was not supported as a positive correlation between the respiration rate and antibiotic concentration was shown.


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Author Biography

David Patrick Gonia, Mentor High School

High School Student



How to Cite

Gonia, D. P., & Talarczyk, P. (2020). The Effect of Antibiotics on the Respiration of Microorganism in Northern Ohio Rivers. Journal of Student Research, 8(2).



HS Research Articles