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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(10), 13649-13661; doi:10.3390/ijerph121013649

Indoor Heating Drives Water Bacterial Growth and Community Metabolic Profile Changes in Building Tap Pipes during the Winter Season

School of Environmental and Municipal Engineering, Xi’an University of Architecture and Technology, Xi’an 710055, Shaanxi, China
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Academic Editors: Nicholas Frederick Gray and Panagiotis Karanis
Received: 14 September 2015 / Revised: 21 October 2015 / Accepted: 21 October 2015 / Published: 27 October 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Microbial Pollution and Disinfection)
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Abstract

The growth of the bacterial community harbored in indoor drinking water taps is regulated by external environmental factors, such as indoor temperature. However, the effect of indoor heating on bacterial regrowth associated with indoor drinking water taps is poorly understood. In the present work, flow cytometry and community-level sole-carbon-source utilization techniques were combined to explore the effects of indoor heating on water bacterial cell concentrations and community carbon metabolic profiles in building tap pipes during the winter season. The results showed that the temperature of water stagnated overnight (“before”) in the indoor water pipes was 15–17 °C, and the water temperature decreased to 4–6 °C after flushing for 10 min (“flushed”). The highest bacterial cell number was observed in water stagnated overnight, and was 5–11 times higher than that of flushed water. Meanwhile, a significantly higher bacterial community metabolic activity (AWCD590nm) was also found in overnight stagnation water samples. The significant “flushed” and “taps” values indicated that the AWCD590nm, and bacterial cell number varied among the taps within the flushed group (p < 0.01). Heatmap fingerprints and principle component analyses (PCA) revealed a significant discrimination bacterial community functional metabolic profiles in the water stagnated overnight and flushed water. Serine, threonine, glucose-phosphate, ketobutyric acid, phenylethylamine, glycerol, putrescine were significantly used by “before” water samples. The results suggested that water stagnated at higher temperature should be treated before drinking because of bacterial regrowth. The data from this work provides useful information on reasonable utilization of drinking water after stagnation in indoor pipes during indoor heating periods. View Full-Text
Keywords: building indoor pipes; indoor heating; flow cytometry; BIOLOG building indoor pipes; indoor heating; flow cytometry; BIOLOG
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhang, H.-H.; Chen, S.-N.; Huang, T.-L.; Shang, P.-L.; Yang, X.; Ma, W.-X. Indoor Heating Drives Water Bacterial Growth and Community Metabolic Profile Changes in Building Tap Pipes during the Winter Season. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 13649-13661.

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