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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2015 Sep;81(18):6436-45. doi: 10.1128/AEM.01218-15. Epub 2015 Jul 10.

Pathogenic Enteric Viruses and Microbial Indicators during Secondary Treatment of Municipal Wastewater.

Author information

1
School of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA.
2
Department of Biological Sciences, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA.
3
Department of Environmental Sciences, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA.
4
School of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA MJanes@agcenter.lsu.edu.

Abstract

Pathogenic enteric viruses are responsible for a wide range of infections in humans, with diverse symptoms. Raw and partially treated wastewaters are major sources of environmental contamination with enteric viruses. We monitored a municipal secondary wastewater treatment plant (New Orleans, LA) on a monthly basis for norovirus (NoV) GI and GII and enterovirus serotypes using multiplex reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) and microbial indicators of fecal contamination using standard plating methods. Densities of indicator bacteria (enterococci, fecal coliforms, and Escherichia coli) did not show monthly or seasonal patterns. Norovirus GII was more abundant than GI and, along with enterovirus serotypes, increased in influent during fall and spring. The highest NoV GI density in influent was in the fall, reaching an average of 4.0 log10 genomic copies/100 ml. Norovirus GI removal (0.95 log10) was lower than that for GII, enterovirus serotypes, and male-specific coliphages (1.48 log10) or for indicator bacteria (4.36 log10), suggesting higher resistance of viruses to treatment. Male-specific coliphages correlated with NoV GII densities in influent and effluent (r = 0.48 and 0.76, respectively) and monthly removal, indicating that male-specific coliphages can be more reliable than indicator bacteria to monitor norovirus GII load and microbial removal. Dominant norovirus genotypes were classified into three GI genotypes (GI.1, GI.3, and GI.4) and four GII genotypes (GII.3, GII.4, GII.13, and GII.21), dominated by GI.1 and GII.4 strains. Some of the seasonal and temporal patterns we observed in the pathogenic enteric viruses were different from those of epidemiological observations.

PMID:
26162869
PMCID:
PMC4542245
DOI:
10.1128/AEM.01218-15
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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