Isolation of enteroviruses from water, suspended solids and sediments from Galveston Bay: survival of poliovirus and rotavirus absorbed to sediments




Rao, V.C.
Seidel, K.M.
Goyal, S.M.
Metcalf, T.G.
Melnick, J.L.

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American Society for Microbiology


The distribution and quantitation of enteroviruses among water, suspended solids and compact sediments in a polluted estuary are described. Samples were collected sequentially from water, suspended solids, fluffy sediments (uppermost layer of bottom sediments) and compact sediment. Of 103 samples examined, 27 (26%) were positive for virus. Polioviruses were recovered most often, followed by coxsackie B viruses and echoviruses 7 and 29. Virus was found most often attached to suspended solids: 72% of these samples were positive, whereas only 14% of water samples without solids yielded virus. Fluffy sediments yielded virus in 47% of the samples; only 5% of compact bottom-sediment samples were positive. When associated with solids, poliovirus and rotavirus retained their infectivity for 19 days. The same viruses remained infectious for only 9 days when freely suspended in seawater. Collection of suspended solids at ambient water pH appears to be very useful for the detection of virus; it has advantages over collecting and processing large volumes of water, with accompanying pH adjustment and salt addition for processing.


pgs. 404-409


viruses, sediments, estuaries, infectious diseases