Large-Scale Survey of Human Enteroviruses in Wastewater Treatment Plants of a Metropolitan Area of Southern Italy

Francesca Pennino, Antonio Nardone, Paolo Montuori, Sara Aurino, Ida Torre, Andrea Battistone, Roberto Delogu, Gabriele Buttinelli, Stefano Fiore, Concetta Amato, Maria Triassi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Human enteroviruses (HEVs) occur in high concentrations in wastewater and can contaminate receiving environmental waters, constituting a major cause of acute waterborne disease worldwide. In this study, we investigated the relative abundance, occurrence, and seasonal distribution of polio and other enteroviruses at three wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in Naples, Southern Italy, from January 2010 to December 2014. Influent and effluent samples from the three WWTPs were collected monthly. One hundred and sixty-one of the 731 wastewater samples collected (22.0%) before and after water treatment were CPE positive on RD cells; while no samples were positive on L20B cells from any WWTPs. Among the 140 non-polio enterovirus isolated from inlet sewage, 69.3% were Coxsackieviruses type B and 30.7% were Echoviruses. Among these, CVB3 and CVB5 were most prevalent, followed by CVB4 and Echo6. The twenty-one samples tested after treatment contained 6 CVB4, 5 CVB3, 3 Echo11, and 2 Echo6; while other serotypes were isolated less frequently. Data on viral detection in treated effluents of WWTPs confirmed the potential environmental contamination by HEVs and could be useful to establish standards for policies on wastewater management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-192
Number of pages6
JournalFood and Environmental Virology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018


  • Enterovirus/isolation & purification
  • Enterovirus Infections/virology
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Poliomyelitis/virology
  • Poliovirus/isolation & purification
  • Sewage/virology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Waste Water/virology
  • Water Purification/methods


Dive into the research topics of 'Large-Scale Survey of Human Enteroviruses in Wastewater Treatment Plants of a Metropolitan Area of Southern Italy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this