Poliovirus detection in water by cell culture and nucleic acid hybridization

Carlos E. Enriquez, Morteza Abbaszadegan, Ian L. Pepper, Kenneth J. Richardson, Charles P. Gerba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Nucleic acid hybridization has been used to detect viral nucleic acid in water. This type of assay, in contrast with tissue culture assays, may not distinguish between viable and non-viable viruses. We evaluated, by comparison with tissue culture infectivity assay (plaque forming method), the ability of the gene probe assay to detect viable poliovirus 1 (LSc) in well water, autoclaved well water, filter-sterilized well water and autoclaved phosphate buffered saline kept at 37 and 15°C for 75 days, and in dechlorinated tap water held at room temperature. A gradual decline in numbers of poliovirus was observed in all of the samples by cell culture assay. With the exception of autoclaved well water and phosphate buffer, a parallel decline in virus detectable by gene probe occurred in all other water samples. These results suggest that detection of poliovirus 1, by gene probe, is influenced by the presence of microorganisms or their products and to a lesser extent by temperature. This suggests that in some natural waters, the detection of poliovirus 1, by gene probe, may be expected to correlate to detection by tissue culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1113-1118
Number of pages6
JournalWater research
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1993


  • gene probe
  • nucleic acid hybridization
  • poliovirus
  • survival enterovirus
  • water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ecological Modeling
  • Pollution
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Civil and Structural Engineering


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