Special Issue "Health-Related Water Microbiology and Wastewater-Based Epidemiology"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water and One Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (2 December 2021) | Viewed by 4331

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Masaaki Kitajima
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Division of Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Hokkaido University, Sapporo 060-8628, Japan
Interests: health-related water microbiology; wastewater-based epidemiology; environmental virology; water and wastewater treatment; molecular biology; microbial risk assessment; biosensor; COVID-19
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Eiji Haramoto
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Interdisciplinary Center for River Basin Environment, University of Yamanashi, 4-3-11 Takeda, Kofu, Yamanashi 400-8511, Japan
Interests: health-related water microbiology; microbial source tracking; viral indicators; wastewater-based epidemiology
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) has been attracting much attention as an effective tool for tracing the circulation of pathogens in a community, providing the opportunity to estimate their prevalence and geographic distribution. The WBE is based on the detection of pathogens in wastewater, which provides information on population-level infection prevalence and epidemiology in a rapid and cost-effective manner. Traditional epidemiological approaches based on clinical diagnosis may be limited by the asymptomatic nature of microbial infections and underdiagnosis of clinical cases, but the WBE approach enables the epidemiology of infectious diseases to be monitored, even if they are not evident via clinical surveillance.

The applicability of WBE to the ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been proposed and proven, and tremendous efforts are being made to enable the practical implemantation of WBE to help in the fight against COVID-19 in many countries.

This Special Issue on "Health-Related Water Microbiology and Wastewater-Based Epidemiology" features high-quality original research and comprehensive reviews from leading scientists in the field of health-related water microbiology. The relevant pathogens to be discussed in this Issue include, but are not limited to: SARS-CoV-2, norovirus, poliovirus, and antimicrobial-resistant bacteria.

Prof. Dr. Masaaki Kitajima
Prof. Dr. Eiji Haramoto
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Health-related water microbiology
  • Wastewater-based epidemiology
  • Environmental surveillance
  • COVID-19
  • Enteric virus
  • Antimicrobial-resistant bacteria

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Article
Release of Antibiotic-Resistance Genes from Hospitals and a Wastewater Treatment Plant in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal
Water 2021, 13(19), 2733; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13192733 - 02 Oct 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1186
Abstract
Hospitals and wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are high-risk point sources of antibiotic-resistance genes (ARGs) and antibiotic-resistant bacteria. This study investigates the occurrence of clinically relevant ARGs (sul1, tet(B), blaCTX-M, blaNDM-1, qnrS) and a class one [...] Read more.
Hospitals and wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are high-risk point sources of antibiotic-resistance genes (ARGs) and antibiotic-resistant bacteria. This study investigates the occurrence of clinically relevant ARGs (sul1, tet(B), blaCTX-M, blaNDM-1, qnrS) and a class one integron (intI1) gene in urban rivers, hospitals, and municipal wastewater in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. Twenty-five water samples were collected from three rivers, six hospitals, and a wastewater treatment plant to determine the concentrations of ARGs and intI1 using quantitative polymerase chain reactions. From the results, all tested ARGs were detected in the river water; also, concentrations of ARGs in WWTP and hospital effluents varied from 6.2 to 12.5 log10 copies/L, highlighting the role of a WWTP and hospitals in the dissemination of ARGs. Except for blaNDM-1, significant positive correlations were found between intI1 and other individual ARGs (r = 0.71–0.96, p < 0.05), indicating the probable implications of intI1 in the transfer of ARGs. Furthermore, this study supports the statement that the blaNDM-1 gene is most likely to be spread in the environment through untreated hospital wastewater. Due to the interaction of surface water and groundwater, future research should focus on ARGs and factors associated with the increase/decrease in their concentration levels in drinking water sources of the Kathmandu Valley. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health-Related Water Microbiology and Wastewater-Based Epidemiology)
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Article
Antibiotic Resistance in Wastewater and Its Impact on a Receiving River: A Case Study of WWTP Brno-Modřice, Czech Republic
Water 2021, 13(16), 2309; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13162309 - 23 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1043
Abstract
Antibiotic resistance has become a global threat in which the anthropogenically influenced aquatic environment represents not only a reservoir for the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria (ARB) among humans and animals but also an environment where resistance genes are introduced into natural microbial [...] Read more.
Antibiotic resistance has become a global threat in which the anthropogenically influenced aquatic environment represents not only a reservoir for the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria (ARB) among humans and animals but also an environment where resistance genes are introduced into natural microbial ecosystems. Wastewater is one of the sources of antibiotic resistance. The aim of this research was the evaluation of wastewater impact on the spread of antibiotic resistance in the water environment. In this study, qPCR was used to detect antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs)—blaCTX-M-15, blaCTX-M-32, ampC, blaTEM, sul1, tetM and mcr-1 and an integron detection primer (intl1). Detection of antibiotic resistant Escherichia coli was used as a complement to the observed qPCR results. Our results show that the process of wastewater treatment significantly reduces the abundances of ARGs and ARB. Nevertheless, treated wastewater affects the ARGs and ARB number in the receiving river. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health-Related Water Microbiology and Wastewater-Based Epidemiology)
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Review

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Review
A Review on the Prevalence of Arcobacter in Aquatic Environments
Water 2022, 14(8), 1266; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14081266 - 13 Apr 2022
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Abstract
Arcobacter is an emerging pathogen that is associated with human and animal diseases. Since its first introduction in 1991, 33 Arcobacter species have been identified. Studies have reported that with the presence of Arcobacter in environmental water bodies, animals, and humans, a possibility [...] Read more.
Arcobacter is an emerging pathogen that is associated with human and animal diseases. Since its first introduction in 1991, 33 Arcobacter species have been identified. Studies have reported that with the presence of Arcobacter in environmental water bodies, animals, and humans, a possibility of its transmission via water and food makes it a potential waterborne and foodborne pathogen. Therefore, this review article focuses on the general characteristics of Arcobacter, including its pathogenicity, antimicrobial resistance, methods of detection by cultivation and molecular techniques, and its presence in water, fecal samples, and animal products worldwide. These detection methods include conventional culture methods, and rapid and accurate Arcobacter identification at the species level, using quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) and multiplex PCR. Arcobacter has been identified worldwide from feces of various hosts, such as humans, cattle, pigs, sheep, horses, dogs, poultry, and swine, and also from meat, dairy products, carcasses, buccal cavity, and cloacal swabs. Furthermore, Arcobacter has been detected in groundwater, river water, wastewater (influent and effluent), canals, treated drinking water, spring water, and seawater. Hence, we propose that understanding the prevalence of Arcobacter in environmental water and fecal-source samples and its infection of humans and animals will contribute to a better strategy to control and prevent the survival and growth of the bacteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health-Related Water Microbiology and Wastewater-Based Epidemiology)
Review
Wastewater-Based Epidemiology for Cost-Effective Mass Surveillance of COVID-19 in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Challenges and Opportunities
Water 2021, 13(20), 2897; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13202897 - 15 Oct 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 911
Abstract
Wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) is an approach that can be used to estimate COVID-19 prevalence in the population by detecting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) RNA in wastewater. As the WBE approach uses pooled samples from the study population, it is an [...] Read more.
Wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) is an approach that can be used to estimate COVID-19 prevalence in the population by detecting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) RNA in wastewater. As the WBE approach uses pooled samples from the study population, it is an inexpensive and non-invasive mass surveillance method compared to individual testing. Thus, it offers a good complement in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) facing high costs of testing or social stigmatization, and it has a huge potential to monitor SARS-CoV-2 and its variants to curb the global COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of this review is to systematize the current evidence about the application of the WBE approach in mass surveillance of COVID-19 infection in LMICs, as well as its future potential. Among other parameters, population size contributing the fecal input to wastewater is an important parameter for COVID-19 prevalence estimation. It is easier to back-calculate COVID-19 prevalence in the community with centralized wastewater systems, because there can be more accurate estimates about the size of contributing population in the catchment. However, centralized wastewater management systems are often of low quality (or even non-existent) in LMICs, which raises a major concern about the ability to implement the WBE approach. However, it is possible to mobilize the WBE approach, if large areas are divided into sub-areas, corresponding to the existing wastewater management systems. In addition, a strong coordination between stakeholders is required for estimating population size respective to wastewater management systems. Nevertheless, further international efforts should be leveraged to strengthen the sanitation infrastructures in LMICs, using the lessons gathered from the current COVID-19 pandemic to be prepared for future pandemics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health-Related Water Microbiology and Wastewater-Based Epidemiology)
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