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Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Opportunities and limitations of molecular methods for quantifying microbial compliance parameters in EU bathing waters
Author(s): Oliver, David
Van Niekerk, Melanie
Kay, David
Heathwaite, A Louise
Porter, Jonathan
Fleming, Lora E
Kinzelman, Julie
Connolly, Elaine
Cummins, Andy
McPhail, Calum
Rahman, Amanna
Thairs, Ted
de Roda Husman, Ana Maria
Hanley, Nicholas
Dunhill, Ian
Quilliam, Richard
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Keywords: Epidemiology
EU Bathing Water Directive
Faecal indicator organism
Microbial pollution
Recreational water
Issue Date: Mar-2014
Date Deposited: 14-Jan-2014
Citation: Oliver D, Van Niekerk M, Kay D, Heathwaite AL, Porter J, Fleming LE, Kinzelman J, Connolly E, Cummins A, McPhail C, Rahman A, Thairs T, de Roda Husman AM, Hanley N, Dunhill I & Quilliam R (2014) Opportunities and limitations of molecular methods for quantifying microbial compliance parameters in EU bathing waters. Environment International, 64, pp. 124-128.
Abstract: The debate over the suitability of molecular biological methods for the enumeration of regulatory microbial parameters (e.g. Faecal Indicator Organisms [FIOs]) in bathing waters versus the use of traditional culture-based methods is of current interest to regulators and the science community. Culture-based methods require a 24-48 hour turn-around time from receipt at the laboratory to reporting, whilst quantitative molecular tools provide a more rapid assay (approximately 2-3 h). Traditional culturing methods are therefore often viewed as slow and ‘out-dated', although they still deliver an internationally ‘accepted' evidence-base. In contrast, molecular tools have the potential for rapid analysis and their operational utility and associated limitations and uncertainties should be assessed in light of their use for regulatory monitoring. Here we report on the recommendations from a series of international workshops, chaired by a UK Working Group (WG) comprised of scientists, regulators, policy makers and other stakeholders, which explored and interrogated both molecular (principally quantitative polymerase chain reaction [qPCR]) and culture-based tools for FIO monitoring under the European Bathing Water Directive. Through detailed analysis of policy implications, regulatory barriers, stakeholder engagement, and the needs of the end-user, the WG identified a series of key concerns that require critical appraisal before a potential shift from culture-based approaches to the employment of molecular biological methods for bathing water regulation could be justified.
DOI Link: 10.1016/j.envint.2013.12.016
Rights: Accepted refereed manuscript of: Oliver D, Van Niekerk M, Kay D, et al (2014) Opportunities and limitations of molecular methods for quantifying microbial compliance parameters in EU bathing waters, Environment International, 64, pp. 124-128. DOI: 10.1016/j.envint.2013.12.016 © 2015, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution- NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International
Notes: Additional co-authors: Lidija Globevnik, Valerie J. Harwood, Chris J. Hodgson, David N. Lees, Gordon L. Nichols, Andreas Nocker, Ciska Schets
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