Researchers Found Genetic Fragments of COVID-19

Aug, 2020 - By SMI

Researchers Found Genetic Fragments of COVID-19

According to the researchers, wastewater testing could be an effective way of managing and testing passengers.

The researchers across the globe are focusing on revealing visions about public health and human behavior by evaluating wastewater content. Previous studies have shown that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19 outbreak) has been found in untreated wastewater. However, to date, there is no strong evidence that an individual has been infected with the virus due to exposure to contaminated water. Now, the research team from the University of Queensland and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) has found genetic fragments of the novel coronavirus after testing cruise ships and aircraft wastewater after reaching their destinations.

The research shed light on the importance of using wastewater as a means of determining whether infected individuals/passengers are arriving in a country through airplane or ship. According to the researchers, wastewater testing could be an effective way of managing and testing passengers. Moreover, it can be used to locate infected people on aircraft or ships. Many individuals infected with the virus are asymptomatic or show no symptoms. Testing can help determine such individuals. During this research, the researchers tested wastewater samples collected from cruise ship and airplane, using two virus concentration methods.

Moreover, the team used RT-droplet digital PCR and reverse-transcriptase quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR). The researchers found COVID-19 RNA in wastewater samples collected from both cruise ships and aircraft. According to health experts, it is important to find out COVID-19 hotspots as they may help protect individuals across the world since many countries are now opening their borders. Wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) technology has become an important tool and is broadly employed by experts across the globe. The WBE may help understand the origin of the virus or how the virus got spread rapidly in the country. The research was published in the Travel Medicine journal.

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