FDP -- Development of Detection and Viability Methods for Waterborne Microsporidia

EPA Grant Number: R828041
Title: FDP -- Development of Detection and Viability Methods for Waterborne Microsporidia
Investigators: Sonzogni, William C. , Battigelli, David A. , Hoffman, Rebecca M. , Marshall, Marilyn M. , Standridge, Jon H.
Current Investigators: Hoffman, Rebecca M. , Borchardt, Mark , Marshall, Marilyn M. , Sonzogni, William C.
Institution: University of Wisconsin Madison
Current Institution: University of Wisconsin Madison , University of Arizona
EPA Project Officer: Nolt-Helms, Cynthia
Project Period: August 1, 2000 through August 3, 2001
Project Amount: $375,037
RFA: Drinking Water (1999) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Drinking Water , Water


Microsporidia are currently categorized as CCL microorganisms for which no reliable detection methods exist. The proposed research targets the development of a sensitive and reliable recovery method for the human microsporidia from natural waters. The strategy will include development of sample collection, concentration and purification techniques as well as field tests for method validation in natural waters.


The study design emphasizes the application of combined molecular biotechnologies for spore recovery. The proposed technologies include flow cytometry/cell sorting and continuous flow centrifugation for the recovery of microsporidia from large sample volumes, and DNA amplification/oligoprobe hybridization for diagnostic assay of purified water concentrates. The performance of the finished method will be assessed in field trials conducted across a variety of natural waters.

Expected Results:

Following validation during in field trials, the proposed method will ultimately be used to assess the fate, ecology and distribution of infectious microsporidia in the environment and to assist in collecting data for future discussions of the contaminant candidate list organisms. The research team anticipates that the proposed detection strategy could be modified for the detection of additional waterborne protozoan parasites such as Cyclospora cayatanensis and Toxoplasma gondii.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this project: View all 14 publications for this project

Journal Articles:

Journal Articles have been submitted on this project: View all 3 journal articles for this project

Supplemental Keywords:

emerging pathogens, enterocytozoon, encephalitozoon., RFA, Scientific Discipline, Water, Environmental Chemistry, Health Risk Assessment, Analytical Chemistry, Environmental Microbiology, Environmental Monitoring, Drinking Water, complex mixtures, natural waters, pathogens, molecular biotechnologies, monitoring, encephalitozoon, microbiological organisms, waterborne disease, exposure and effects, exposure, viability methods, treatment, microbial risk management, oligoprobe, parasites, drinking water contaminants, microsporidia, water treatment, contaminant candidate list

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2001 Progress Report
  • Final Report