Survival of bacteriophages MS-2 and PRD-1 in ground water

M. T. Yahya, L. Galsomies, C. P. Gerba, R. C. Bales

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Bacteriophages are potentially useful models for studying the fate and transport of pathogenic enteric viruses and other biocolloids through soil and ground water. To be useful for this purpose they must be capable of surviving for significant periods in ground water and demonstrate low adsorption to soil surfaces. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the survival of two bacteriophages which have been shown to adsorb poorly to soils, i.e. the Escherichia coli phages MS-2 and PRD-1 which infect Salmonella typhimurium. Samples of ground water from various regions of North America were inoculated with the test phages and incubated at temperatures near the ambient ground water temperature of the collection site. At 7° C no significant inactivation of the phages occurred over a period of 80 days. At higher temperature (10 to 23° C) PRD-1 was far more resistant to inactivation than MS-2, persisting for periods of 7° to 10 times longer in most water samples.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)409-412
Number of pages4
JournalWater Science and Technology
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 1993
EventProceedings of the 16th Biennial Conference and Exposition of the International Association on Water Pollution Research and Control - Washington, DC, USA
Duration: May 24 1992May 30 1992


  • Ground water
  • Phage
  • Survival
  • Temperature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology


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