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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(8), 874; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14080874

Regional Assessment of Human Fecal Contamination in Southern California Coastal Drainages

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Southern California Coastal Water Research Project, 3535 Harbor Blvd, Suite 110, Costa Mesa, CA 92626, USA
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Weston Solutions, 5817 Dryden Place, Suite 101, Carlsbad, CA 92008, USA
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City of Malibu, 23825 Stuart Ranch Road, Malibu, CA 90265, USA
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Orange County Department of Public Works, 2301 N. Glassell St, Orange, CA 92865, USA
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Los Angeles County Department of Public Works, 900 S. Fremont Ave, Alhambra, CA 91803, USA
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Los Angeles County Sanitation District, 24501 S. Figueroa Street, Carson, CA 90745, USA
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Orange County Public Health Laboratory, 600 Shellmaker Road, Newport Beach, CA 92660, USA
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National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration, Ocean Chemistry and Ecosystems Division, Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, Miami, FL 33149, stationed at NOAA/NMFS/SWFSC, La Jolla, CA, USA
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City of San Diego Public Utilities Department, Environmental Monitoring and Technical Services Division, 2392 Kincaid Road, San Diego, CA 92101, USA
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City of Encinitas, 505 S. Vulcan Ave, Encinitas, CA 92024, USA
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Orange County Sanitation District, 10844 Ellis Ave, Fountain Valley, CA 92708, USA
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Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board, 320 W. 4th St, Suite 200, Los Angeles, CA 90013, USA
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Ventura County Public Health Laboratory, 2240 E. Gonzales Road, Oxnard, CA 93036, USA
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City of Los Angeles Environmental Monitoring Division, 12000 Vista del Mar Blvd, Playa del Rey, CA 90293, USA
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San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board, 2375 Northside Dr., Suite 100, San Diego, CA 92108, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Warish Ahmed and David J. Beale
Received: 3 July 2017 / Revised: 1 August 2017 / Accepted: 1 August 2017 / Published: 4 August 2017
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Abstract

Host-associated genetic markers that allow for fecal source identification have been used extensively as a diagnostic tool to determine fecal sources within watersheds, but have not been used in routine monitoring to prioritize remediation actions among watersheds. Here, we present a regional assessment of human marker prevalence among drainages that discharge to the U.S. southern California coast. Approximately 50 samples were analyzed for the HF183 human marker from each of 22 southern California coastal drainages under summer dry weather conditions, and another 50 samples were targeted from each of 23 drainages during wet weather. The HF183 marker was ubiquitous, detected in all but two sites in dry weather and at all sites during wet weather. However, there was considerable difference in the extent of human fecal contamination among sites. Similar site ranking was produced regardless of whether the assessment was based on frequency of HF183 detection or site average HF183 concentration. However, site ranking differed greatly between dry and wet weather. Site ranking also differed greatly when based on enterococci, which do not distinguish between pollution sources, vs. HF183, which distinguishes higher risk human fecal sources from other sources, indicating the additional value of the human-associated marker as a routine monitoring tool. View Full-Text
Keywords: fecal source identification; human fecal marker; storm water; microbial source tracking; water quality monitoring; regional monitoring program; qPCR fecal source identification; human fecal marker; storm water; microbial source tracking; water quality monitoring; regional monitoring program; qPCR
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Cao, Y.; Raith, M.R.; Smith, P.D.; Griffith, J.F.; Weisberg, S.B.; Schriewer, A.; Sheldon, A.; Crompton, C.; Amenu, G.G.; Gregory, J.; Guzman, J.; Goodwin, K.D.; Othman, L.; Manasjan, M.; Choi, S.; Rapoport, S.; Steele, S.; Nguyen, T.; Yu, X. Regional Assessment of Human Fecal Contamination in Southern California Coastal Drainages. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 874.

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