Bacteriophages MS2 and PRD1 in turfgrass by subsurface drip irrigation

Carlos Enriquez, Absar Alum, Elisa M. Suarez-Rey, Christopher Y. Choi, Gideon Oron, Charles P. Gerba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The contamination of turfgrass by bacteriophages MS-2 and PRD-1 was assessed in the field under sprinkler irrigation (SI) and subsurface drip irrigation (SDI). No contamination of turfgrass by MS-2 was observed using SDI in the summer or winter seasons. In the summer, PRD-1 was detected in low numbers in SDI turfgrass; however, at significantly lower numbers than in SI turfgrass (p <0.05). In contrast, SI turfgrass was readily contaminated with MS-2 and PRD-1 during both seasons. Column experiments showed that viral migration was greater in sandy soil than in clay soil. Descending viral transport was more pronounced than upward migration, but only significantly greater (p<0.05) in sandy soil. The survival in soil of MS-2 and PRD-1 was compared with that of poliovirus 1 and enteric adenovirus 40. MS-2 showed shorter survival in comparison to the other viruses (p<0.05). The results obtained in this study suggest that SDI used to irrigate turfgrass with wastewater may effectively reduce the risk of contamination by potential viral pathogens.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)852-857
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Environmental Engineering
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2003


  • Contamination
  • Grasses
  • Pathogens
  • Trickle irrigation
  • Vegetation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • General Environmental Science


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