Viruses in surface and drinking waters

Joseph L. Melnick, Charles P. Gerba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Over 114 different human enteric viruses are known. They are all excreted into sewage, and opportunities exist for them to find their way into water distribution systems. The characteristics of the illnesses caused by enteric viruses make their transmission by water difficult to recognize. Methods are not available for isolating all of the enteric viruses from water, so that finding any type of human virus in drinking water is an indication that other types may also be present. With improvements in technology, our laboratory has recently been able to detect group B coxsackieviruses, rotaviruses, and hepatitis A virus in chlorinated drinking water. At present, there are no uniform methods for concentrating, isolating, and identifying viruses in water. Emphasis should be placed on seeking uniformity in methods so that standards can be set for viruses in water.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3-7
Number of pages5
JournalEnvironment international
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science


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