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Pathogens 2015, 4(3), 503-512; doi:10.3390/pathogens4030503

Enumeration of Somatic and F-RNA Phages as an Indicator of Fecal Contamination in Potable Water from Rural Areas of the North West Province

1
Department of Biological Sciences, School of Environmental and Health Sciences, North West University, Mafikeng Campus, Mmabatho, Mafikeng 2735, South Africa
2
Food Security and Safety Niche Area, Faculty of Agriculture, Science and Technology, North-West University, Mmabatho, Mafikeng 2735, South Africa
3
Unit for Environmental Science and Management, Faculty of Natural Science, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus, Potchefstroom 2531, South Africa
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Mark W. LeChevallier
Received: 4 March 2015 / Revised: 13 June 2015 / Accepted: 29 June 2015 / Published: 1 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Waterborne Pathogens)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [259 KB, uploaded 3 July 2015]   |  

Abstract

Bacteriophages are regarded as enteric viral indicators in faecally contaminated water systems and may indicate the presence of human viral pollution. They are relatively resistant to inactivation by natural and treatment processes. In this study, the presence of somatic coliphages and F-RNA coliphages was investigated in potable water from rural areas in the North West province. Water samples were aseptically collected from boreholes and tap water from some rural communities in the North West Province. Physical parameters of the water, such as the temperature, pH and turbidity, were measured before sample collection. Double-agar layer assay was performed using ISO, (1995, 2000) standard methods. Bottled water was used as a negative control and the strains фX174 and MS2 as positive controls. Of the 16 water samples collected, 15 were positive for somatic bacteriophages while F-RNA coliphages were detected in only two samples. Amongst the positive samples 189 and three plaque forming units were obtained for both somatic and F-RNA coliphages, respectively. No coliphage was detected in water from Masamane tap 1. The rest of the samples obtained from various rural areas were positive and did not comply with national and international standards for potable water. This was a cause for concern and should be further investigated. View Full-Text
Keywords: somatic phage; F-RNA phage; rural water supply; groundwater; potable water contamination somatic phage; F-RNA phage; rural water supply; groundwater; potable water contamination
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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

Nkwe, K.I.; Ateba, C.N.; Sithebe, N.P.; Bezuidenhout, C.C. Enumeration of Somatic and F-RNA Phages as an Indicator of Fecal Contamination in Potable Water from Rural Areas of the North West Province. Pathogens 2015, 4, 503-512.

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