The objective of this project was to develop and evaluate a practical technique to indicate the probability of the presence of bacterial pathogens in receiving waters. A practical method was defined as one that would limit the use of defined culture-based microbiological methods, and would be based on: (1) validating indicator organisms that predicted the presence of pathogens, or (2) detection of pathogens by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assays. The study also assessed the utility of PCR-based technology for bacterial pathogen detection with respect to technology transfer to a wider range of water and wastewater facilities.
A relationship was demonstrated between the concentration of selected indicators and the probability of detecting (1) Salmonella spp. by culture and (2) shiga toxin producing coliforms (E. coli O157 and related bacteria) by PCR. The approach of relating the concentration of indicator organisms to the probability of pathogens being present was shown to be a useful method to evaluate the predictive value of indicators. However, a larger database on the occurrence of other bacterial pathogens would be required to evaluate the predictive value of indicators for pathogens other than Salmonella and toxin gene-carrying coliforms.
This title belongs to WERF Research Report Series
ISBN: 9781780404172 (eBook)
ISBN: 9781843396888 (Print)
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