Virus reduction during advanced bardenpho and conventional wastewater treatment processes

Bradley W. Schmitz, Masaaki Kitajima, Maria E. Campillo, Charles P. Gerba, Ian L. Pepper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

87 Scopus citations


The present study investigated wastewater treatment for the removal of 11 different virus types (pepper mild mottle virus; Aichi virus; genogroup I, II, and IV noroviruses; enterovirus; sapovirus; group-A rotavirus; adenovirus; and JC and BK polyomaviruses) by two wastewater treatment facilities utilizing advanced Bardenpho technology and compared the results with conventional treatment processes. To our knowledge, this is the first study comparing full-scale treatment processes that all received sewage influent from the same region. The incidence of viruses in wastewater was assessed with respect to absolute abundance, occurrence, and reduction in monthly samples collected throughout a 12 month period in southern Arizona. Samples were concentrated via an electronegative filter method and quantified using TaqMan-based quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Results suggest that Plant D, utilizing an advanced Bardenpho process as secondary treatment, effectively reduced pathogenic viruses better than facilities using conventional processes. However, the absence of cell-culture assays did not allow an accurate assessment of infective viruses. On the basis of these data, the Aichi virus is suggested as a conservative viral marker for adequate wastewater treatment, as it most often showed the best correlation coefficients to viral pathogens, was always detected at higher concentrations, and may overestimate the potential virus risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9524-9532
Number of pages9
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 6 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry


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