CONNECTICUT — Once again, as happened in late October, there’s been a dramatic spike in the concentration of coronavirus in wastewater in several areas across the state.
Recent spike in COVID-19 infections coincide with a dramatic increase in the virus being detected in sewage.
Researchers found that when SARS-CoV-2 ribonucleic acid, known as RNA, concentrations spike in municipal sewage, it’s a predictor of infection rates.
“SARS-CoV-2 RNA concentration in primary sludge closely followed the epidemiology curves established by compiled COVID-19 testing data and hospital admissions, but was a leading indicator by seven and three days, respectively,” the study reads.
“Our study could have substantial policy implications. Jurisdictions can use primary sludge SARS-CoV-2 concentrations to preempt community outbreak dynamics or provide an additional basis for easing restrictions, especially when there are limitations in clinical testing. Raw wastewater and sludge-based surveillance is particularly useful for low and middle-income countries where clinical testing capacity is limited.”
According to Yale’s Grubaugh Lab, the data reflects the number of viruses per milliliter of primary sludge.