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Appl Environ Microbiol. 1988 Jun;54(6):1325-9.

Novel approach for modifying microporous filters for virus concentration from water.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology and Cell Science, University of Florida, Gainesville 32611.


Electronegative microporous filters composed of epoxyfiberglass (Filterite) were treated with cationic polymers to enhance their virus-adsorbing properties. This novel and inexpensive approach to microporous filter modification entails soaking filters in an aqueous solution of a cationic polymer such as polyethyleneimine (PEI) for 2 h at room temperature and then allowing the filters to air dry overnight on absorbent paper towels. PEI-treated filters were evaluated for coliphage (MS2, T2, and phi X174) and enterovirus (poliovirus type 1 and coxsackievirus type B5) adsorption from buffer at pH 3.5 to 9.0 and for indigenous coliphages from unchlorinated secondary effluent at ambient pH. Adsorbed viruses were recovered with 3% beef extract (pH 9). Several other cationic polymers were used to modify epoxyfiberglass filters and were evaluated for their ability to concentrate viruses from water. Zeta potentials of disrupted filter material indicated that electronegative epoxyfiberglass filters were made more electropositive when treated with cationic polymers. In general, epoxyfiberglass filters treated with cationic polymers were found to adsorb a greater percentage of coliphages and enteroviruses than were untreated filters.

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