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A Spike Cocktail Approach to Improve Microbial Performance Monitoring for Water Reuse
Zimmerman, B., A. Korajkic, N. Brinkman, A. Grimm, N. Ashbolt, AND J. Garland. A Spike Cocktail Approach to Improve Microbial Performance Monitoring for Water Reuse. WATER ENVIRONMENT RESEARCH. Water Environment Federation, Alexandria, VA, 88(9):824-837, (2016).
This manuscrupt details an approach for developing "spike cocktail", a mixture of microorganisms that can be used to evaluate the performance of engineered and natural systems.
Water reuse, via either centralized treatment of traditional wastewater or decentralized treatment and on-site reuse, is becoming an increasingly important element of sustainable water management. Despite advances in waterborne pathogen detection methods, low and highly variable pathogen levels limit their utility for routine evaluation of health risks in water reuse systems. Therefore, there is a need to improve our understanding of the linkage between pathogens and more readily measured process indicators during treatment. This paper describes an approach for constructing spiking experiments to relate the behavior of viral, bacterial, and protozoan pathogens with relevant process indicators. General issues are reviewed, and the spiking protocol is applied as a case study example to improve microbial performance monitoring and health risk evaluation in a water reuse system. This approach provides a foundation for the development of novel approaches to improve real or near-real time performance monitoring of water recycling systems.