Location

Nessmith-Lane Atrium

Session Format

Poster Presentation

Research Area Topic:

Natural & Physical Sciences - Environmental Sciences & Sustainability

Co-Presenters, Co- Authors, Co-Researchers, Mentors, or Faculty Advisors

Kathryn McGowan

Asheley Poole (Georgia Southern University)

Kendall Anderson (Georgia Southern University)

Jeffrey Jones (Georgia Southern University)

Asli Aslan (Georgia Southern University)

Abstract

Beaches contaminated by waterborne pathogens cause a variety of diseases. Studies show enterococci, a common fecal indicator bacteria, are not associated with emerging pathogens and bacteriophages could be better indicators for waterborne pathogens. This study examines the occurrence of two bacteriophages and their relation with enterococci in a marine beach known for high levels of pollution.

Monthly samples were collected from four sites at Saint Andrews and Clam Creek Beach on Jekyll Island. Tidal influences were investigated by collecting samples at 7 a.m., 12 p.m., 3 p.m., and 7 p.m. Temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, and pH were also collected. US EPA Method 1602 was used to enumerate somatic and F bacteriophage and Method 1600 for Enterococci.

Enterococci concentrations ranged from <1 to 60 CFU/ 100ml with lowest concentrations detected at 12 p.m. and highest at 4 p.m. Somatic bacteriophage numbers fluctuated between 9 and 30 PFU /100ml and F phage 1 to 4 PFU /100ml. For bacteriophages, highest concentrations were found at 7 a.m. There was no significant relationship between enterococci and bacteriophages. A significant correlation between somatic and F specific coliphage (p<0.01), somatic phage and temperature (p<0.027), and F phage and salinity (p<0.05) was detected.

Highest concentrations of bacteria and bacteriophages were detected during ebb tide, due to increasing inflow from creeks near each beach. No significant relationship between enterococci and viruses was detected. Correlations between environmental factors and phages indicate better representation of environmental influence on beach water quality such as freshwater inflow due to runoff. Further studies may show the relation between viruses, including Adenovirus and Norovirus, and potential sources of pollution. Monitoring environmental conditions provides better information on use of bacteriophages as alternative indicators for microbial pollution in recreational marine waters.

Keywords

Enterococci, Bacteriophages

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Presentation Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

Start Date

4-16-2016 10:45 AM

End Date

4-16-2016 12:00 PM

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Apr 16th, 10:45 AM Apr 16th, 12:00 PM

Bacteriophage as an Alternative Indicator for Microbiological Pollution at Marine Beaches

Nessmith-Lane Atrium

Beaches contaminated by waterborne pathogens cause a variety of diseases. Studies show enterococci, a common fecal indicator bacteria, are not associated with emerging pathogens and bacteriophages could be better indicators for waterborne pathogens. This study examines the occurrence of two bacteriophages and their relation with enterococci in a marine beach known for high levels of pollution.

Monthly samples were collected from four sites at Saint Andrews and Clam Creek Beach on Jekyll Island. Tidal influences were investigated by collecting samples at 7 a.m., 12 p.m., 3 p.m., and 7 p.m. Temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, and pH were also collected. US EPA Method 1602 was used to enumerate somatic and F bacteriophage and Method 1600 for Enterococci.

Enterococci concentrations ranged from <1 to 60 CFU>/ 100ml with lowest concentrations detected at 12 p.m. and highest at 4 p.m. Somatic bacteriophage numbers fluctuated between 9 and 30 PFU /100ml and F phage 1 to 4 PFU /100ml. For bacteriophages, highest concentrations were found at 7 a.m. There was no significant relationship between enterococci and bacteriophages. A significant correlation between somatic and F specific coliphage (p<0.01), somatic phage and temperature (p<0.027), and F phage and salinity (p<0.05) was detected.

Highest concentrations of bacteria and bacteriophages were detected during ebb tide, due to increasing inflow from creeks near each beach. No significant relationship between enterococci and viruses was detected. Correlations between environmental factors and phages indicate better representation of environmental influence on beach water quality such as freshwater inflow due to runoff. Further studies may show the relation between viruses, including Adenovirus and Norovirus, and potential sources of pollution. Monitoring environmental conditions provides better information on use of bacteriophages as alternative indicators for microbial pollution in recreational marine waters.