SOLBIO (Solutions of detection and remediation for the elimination of antibiotics in drinkable or wastewater) is a three year project funded by the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan – funded by the European Union – NextGenerationEU programme. The project started in October 2022 and is coordinated by Prof José Luis Gómez Ribelles in the CBIT and Prof Senentxu Lanceros Méndez in the BCMaterials (Basque country).
The main objective of this project is to develop a polymeric membrane containing photocatalytic nanoparticles (PNPs) or absorbent metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) which can effectively eliminate antibiotics, antibiotic resistant bacteria (ARBs) and antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) from drinkable or waste water. These substances are part of the so-called «Contaminants of emerging concern» (CECs) and which presence in water of human consumption implies a risk for public and individual health. The effect induced by the PNPs belongs to the «advanced oxidative processes» (AOPs). In this case, ultraviolet (UV) or visible light is used to excite a semiconductor shaped as nanoparticles, triggering a cascade of redox reactions with water and the oxygen dissolved in it and resulting in reactive oxygen species (ROS) which will ultimately degrade the contaminants. Regarding MOFs, they act as molecular «filters» by absorbing and retaining the contaminants inside their structure.