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Covid-19 Rise In Sewage Could Be Early Warning For Outbreaks

Emma Tyrrell
Emma Tyrrell

09:06 29 Sep 2020


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Scientists measuring levels of Covid-19 in sewage at a Dublin wasterwater treatment plant, have seen increasing levels of the virus as cases rise.

Samples taken from the Ringsend facility in June show the level of genetic material from Covid-19 was in decline.

It became stronger in August and then increased in September, coinciding with higher levels of infections in the capital.

The plant serves 1.9 million in the greater Dublin area.

The UCD team of researchers, who have carrying looking at samples since June, say routine testing of sewage could act as an early warning system for future outbreaks, according to the Irish Independent.

Experts say it can show the areas where the virus is prevalent, allowing for focused clinical testing in a particular region.

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