01/03/2018 Environmental Science Medicine
DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.10.254 SemanticScholar ID: 30028469 MAG: 2767442498

Field assessment of bacterial communities and total trihalomethanes: Implications for drinking water networks.

Publication Summary

Operation and maintenance (O&M) of drinking water distribution networks (DWDNs) in tropical countries simultaneously face the control of acute and chronic risks due to the presence of microorganisms and disinfection by-products, respectively. In this study, results from a detailed field characterization of microbiological, chemical and infrastructural parameters of a tropical-climate DWDN are presented. Water physicochemical parameters and the characteristics of the network were assessed to evaluate the relationship between abiotic and microbiological factors and their association with the presence of total trihalomethanes (TTHMs). Illumina sequencing of the bacterial 16s rRNA gene revealed significant differences in the composition of biofilm and planktonic communities. The highly diverse biofilm communities showed the presence of methylotrophic bacteria, which suggest the presence of methyl radicals such as THMs within this habitat. Microbiological parameters correlated with water age, pH, temperature and free residual chlorine. The results from this study are necessary to increase the awareness of O&M practices in DWDNs required to reduce biofilm formation and maintain appropriate microbiological and chemical water quality, in relation to biofilm detachment and DBP formation.

CAER Authors

Avatar Image for Catherine Noakes

Prof. Catherine Noakes

University of Leeds - Professor of Environmental Engineering for Buildings

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