Abstract

Enteric virus environmental surveillance via a highly sensitive method is critical as many enteric viruses have low infectious doses and can persist in the environment for extended periods. This study determined the potential of the novel bag-mediated filtration system (BMFS) to recover human enteric viruses and pepper mild mottle virus (PMMoV) from wastewater and wastewater-impacted surface waters, examined PMMoV use as a fecal contamination indicator in Kenya, and identified potential BMFS process controls. From April 2015 to April 2016, BMFS samples were collected from seven sites in Kenya (n = 59). Enteroviruses and PMMoV were detected in 100% of samples, and human adenovirus, human astrovirus, hepatitis A virus, norovirus GI, norovirus GII, sapovirus, and human rotavirus were detected in the majority of samples. The consistent detection of enteroviruses and PMMoV suggests that these viruses could be used as indicators in similarly fecally contaminated sites and BMFS process controls. As contamination of surface water sources remains a global issue, enteric virus environmental surveillance is necessary. This study demonstrates an effective way to sample large volumes of wastewater and wastewater-impacted surface waters for the detection of multiple enteric viruses simultaneously.

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