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Concept: Water purification


Abstract. In developing countries, safe piped drinking water is generally unavailable, and bottled water is unaffordable for most people. Purchasing drinking water from community-scale decentralized water treatment and refill kiosks (referred to as isi ulang depots in Indonesia) is becoming a common alternative. This study investigates the association between diarrhea risk and community-scale water treatment and refill kiosk. We monitored daily diarrhea status and water source for 1,000 children 1-4 years of age in Jakarta, Indonesia, for up to 5 months. Among children in an urban slum, rate of diarrhea/1,000 child-days varied significantly by primary water source: 8.13 for tap water, 3.60 for bottled water, and 3.97 for water kiosks. In multivariable Poisson regression analysis, diarrhea risk remained significantly lower among water kiosk users (adjusted rate ratio [RR] = 0.49, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.29-0.83) and bottled water users (adjusted RR = 0.45, 95% CI = 0.21-0.97), compared with tap water users. In a peri-urban area, where few people purchased from water kiosk (N = 28, 6% of total population), diarrhea rates were lower overall: 2.44 for well water, 1.90 for bottled water, and 2.54 for water kiosks. There were no significant differences in diarrhea risk for water kiosk users or bottled water users compared with well water users. Purchasing water from low-cost water kiosks is associated with a reduction in diarrhea risk similar to that found for bottled water.

Concepts: Regression analysis, Water purification, Prediction interval, Bottled water, Water quality, Drinking water, Poisson regression, Tap water


During April 25, 2014-October 15, 2015, approximately 99,000 residents of Flint, Michigan, were affected by changes in drinking water quality after their water source was switched from the Detroit Water Authority (DWA), sourced from Lake Huron, to the Flint Water System (FWS), sourced from the Flint River.* Because corrosion control was not used at the FWS water treatment plant, the levels of lead in Flint tap water increased over time. Adverse health effects are associated with lead exposure (1). On January 2, 2015, a water advisory was issued because of detection of high levels of trihalomethanes, byproducts of disinfectants.(†)(,)(§) Studies conducted by local and national investigators detected an increase in the prevalence of blood lead levels (BLLs) ≥5 µg/dL (the CDC reference level) among children aged <5 years living in Flint (2) and an increase in water lead levels after the water source switch (3). On October 16, 2015, the Flint water source was switched back to DWA, and residents were instructed to use filtered tap water for cooking and drinking. During that time, pregnant and breastfeeding women and children aged <6 years were advised to consume bottled water.(¶) To assess the impact on BLLs of consuming contaminated drinking water, CDC examined the distribution of BLLs ≥5 µg/dL among children aged <6 years before, during, and after the switch in water source. This analysis enabled determination of whether the odds of having BLLs ≥5 µg/dL before the switch differed from the odds during the switch to FWS (before and after the January 2, 2015, water advisory was issued), and after the switch back to DWA. Overall, among 9,422 blood lead tests in children aged <6 years, 284 (3.0%) BLLs were ≥5 µg/dL during April 25, 2013-March 16, 2016. The adjusted probability of having BLLs ≥5 µg/dL was 46% higher during the period after the switch from DWA to FWS (and before the January 2, 2015, water advisory) than during the period before the water switch to FWS. Although unrelated to lead in the water, the water advisory likely reduced tap water consumption and increased consumption of bottled water. Characterizing exposure to lead contaminated drinking water among children aged <6 years living in Flint can help guide appropriate interventions.

Concepts: Water, Water purification, Water pollution, Water quality, Drinking water, Waterborne diseases, Lead poisoning, Tap water


Provision of safe water in the United States is vital to protecting public health (1). Public health agencies in the U.S. states and territories* report information on waterborne disease outbreaks to CDC through the National Outbreak Reporting System (NORS) ( During 2013-2014, 42 drinking water-associated(†) outbreaks were reported, accounting for at least 1,006 cases of illness, 124 hospitalizations, and 13 deaths. Legionella was associated with 57% of these outbreaks and all of the deaths. Sixty-nine percent of the reported illnesses occurred in four outbreaks in which the etiology was determined to be either a chemical or toxin or the parasite Cryptosporidium. Drinking water contamination events can cause disruptions in water service, large impacts on public health, and persistent community concern about drinking water quality. Effective water treatment and regulations can protect public drinking water supplies in the United States, and rapid detection, identification of the cause, and response to illness reports can reduce the transmission of infectious pathogens and harmful chemicals and toxins.

Concepts: Epidemiology, United States, Water purification, Water pollution, Water quality, Drinking water, Waterborne diseases, Water treatment


The travelling population is increasing globally year on year. International tourist arrival figures reached 1087 million in 2013 and 1133 million in 2014; of which 53% and 54% respectively accounted for air transport. The water on board aircraft is sourced from surface or ground water; piped to a central filling point and distributed to each aircraft by water service vehicles at the home base or at the destination airport. The purpose of this study was to ascertain the microbial, chemical (pH; Total and Free chlorine) and physical (temperature) quality of water from two aircraft, long- and short-haul, as well as from the original water source and the water service vehicle. A total of 154 water samples were collected and analysed. Long-haul flights were found to be significantly poorer in terms of microbial quality than short haul flights (p = 0.015). Furthermore, correlation and regression analysis showed that the water service vehicle was a significant source of increased microbial load in aircraft. Microbial diversity was also demonstrated, with 37 bacterial species identified belonging to eight classes: γ-Proteobacteria; β-Proteobacteria; α-Proteobacteria; Bacilli; Actinobacteria; Flavobacteria; Sphingobacteria and Cytophaga; using phenotypic and 16S rDNA sequence-based analysis. We present a novel quantified study of aircraft-related potable water supplies.

Concepts: Bacteria, Water purification, Rocket, Desalination, Water crisis, Aircraft, Jet airliner, Flight length


The elevated fluoride from drinking water impacts on T3, T4 and TSH hormones. The aim was study impacts of drinking water fluoride on T3, T4 and TSH hormones inYGA (Yazd Greater Area). In this case- control study 198 cases and 213 controls were selected. Fluoride was determined by the SPADNS Colorimetric Method. T3, T4 and TSH hormones tested in the Yazd central laboratory by RIA (Radio Immuno Assay) method. The average amount of TSH and T3 hormones based on the levels of fluoride in two concentration levels 0-0.29 and 0.3-0.5 (mg/L) was statistically significant (P = 0.001 for controls and P = 0.001 for cases). In multivariate regression logistic analysis, independent variable associated with Hypothyroidism were: gender (odds ratio: 2.5, CI 95%: 1.6-3.9), family history of thyroid disease (odds ratio: 2.7, CI 95%: 1.6-4.6), exercise (odds ratio: 5.34, CI 95%: 3.2-9), Diabetes (odds ratio: 3.7, CI 95%: 1.7-8), Hypertension (odds ratio: 3.2, CI 95%: 1.3-8.2), water consumption (odds ratio: 4, CI 95%: 1.2-14). It was found that fluoride has impacts on TSH, T3 hormones even in the standard concentration of less than 0.5 mg/L. Application of standard household water purification devices was recommended for hypothyroidism.

Concepts: Statistics, Water purification, Thyroid disease, Hypothyroidism, Hyperthyroidism, Thyroid, Thyroid hormone, Drinking water


It is estimated that ∼2.7 million tons poly(carbonate)s (PCs) are produced annually worldwide. In 2008, retailers pulled products from store shelves after reports of bisphenol A (BPA) leaching from baby bottles, reusable drink bottles, and other retail products. Since PCs are not typically recycled, a need for the repurposing of the PC waste has arisen. We report the one-step synthesis of poly(aryl ether sulfone)s (PSUs) from the depolymerization of PCs and in situ polycondensation with bis(aryl fluorides) in the presence of carbonate salts. PSUs are high-performance engineering thermoplastics that are commonly used for reverse osmosis and water purification membranes, medical equipment, as well as high temperature applications. PSUs generated through this cascade approach were isolated in high purity and yield with the expected thermal properties and represent a procedure for direct conversion of one class of polymer to another in a single step. Computational investigations performed with density functional theory predict that the carbonate salt plays two important catalytic roles in this reaction: it decomposes the PCs by nucleophilic attack, and in the subsequent polyether formation process, it promotes the reaction of phenolate dimers formed in situ with the aryl fluorides present. We envision repurposing poly(BPA carbonate) for the production of value-added polymers.

Concepts: Water purification, Bisphenol A, Density functional theory, Carbonate


To enhance colloidal stability of nano zero-valent iron (NZVI) used for groundwater remediation, the surfaces of such NZVI can be modified via coating with organic stabilizers. These surface stabilizers can electrostatically, sterically, or electrosterically stabilize NZVI suspensions in water, but their efficacy is affected by the presence of humic acid (HA) in groundwater. In this study, the effect of HA on the colloidal stability of NZVI coated with three types of stabilizers (i.e., polyacrylic acid (PAA), Tween-20 and starch) was evaluated. Differing stability behaviors were observed for different surface-modified NZVIs (SM-NZVI) in the presence of HA. Fluorescence spectroscopic analysis probed the possible interactions at the SM-NZVI-HA interface, providing a better understanding of the effect of HA on SM-NZVI stability. The adsorption of HA on the surface of PAA-modified NZVI via complexation with NZVI (rather than the PAA stabilizer) enhanced the electrosteric repulsion effect, increasing the stability of the particles. However, for NZVI modified with Tween-20 or starch, HA could interact with the surface stabilizer and apparently play a “bridge” role among the particles, which might induce aggregation of the particles. Therefore, the stability behavior of NZVI modified with Tween-20 or starch might have resulted from the combined effect of “bridging” and “electrosteric” exerted by HA.

Concepts: Spectroscopy, Water, Stabilizer, Water purification, Colloid, Behavior, Humus, Flocculation


The aim of this study is to investigate how the presence of Cu influences tebuconazole (Teb) sorption onto contrasting soil types and two important constituents of the soil sorption complex: hydrated Fe oxide and humic substances. Tebuconazole was used in commercial form and as an analytical-grade chemical at different Teb/Cu molar ratios (1:4, 1:1, 4:1, and Teb alone). Increased Cu concentrations had a positive effect on tebuconazole sorption onto most soils and humic substances, probably as a result of Cu-Teb tertiary complexes on the soil surfaces. Tebuconazole sorption increased in the following order of different Teb/Cu ratios 1:4 > 1:1 > 4:1 > without Cu addition, with the only exception for the Leptosol and ferrihydrite. The highest K ( f ) value was observed for humic substances followed by ferrihydrite, the Cambisol, the Arenosol, and the Leptosol. The sorption of analytical-grade tebuconazole onto all matrices was lower, but the addition of Cu supported again tebuconazole sorption. The Teb/Cu ratio with the highest Cu addition (1:4) exhibited the highest K ( f ) values in all matrices with the exception of ferrihydrite. The differences in tebuconazole sorption can be attributed to the additives present in the commercial product. This work proved the importance of soil characteristics and composition of the commercially available pesticides together with the presence of Cu on the behavior of tebuconazole in soils.

Concepts: Water purification, Soil, Ratio, Copper, Chelation, Humus, Humic acid, Soil classification


Most mAb platform purification processes consist of an affinity capture step followed by 1 or 2 polishing steps. An understanding of the performance linkages between the unit operations can lead to robust manufacturing processes. In this study, a weak-partitioning anion-exchange chromatography polishing step used in a mAb purification process was characterized through high throughput screening (HTS) experiments, small-scale experiments including a cycling study performed on qualified scale-down models, and large-scale manufacturing runs. When material from a Protein A column that had been cycled less than 10 times was loaded on the AEX resin, early breakthrough of impurities and premature loss of capacity was observed. As the cycle number on the Protein A resin increased, the capacity of the subsequent AEX step increased. Different control strategies were considered for preventing impurity breakthrough and improving AEX resin lifetimes. Depth filtration of the Protein A peak pool significantly improved the AEX resin capacity, robustness and lifetime. Further, the turbidity of the Protein A pool has the potential for use as an in-process control parameter for monitoring the performance of the AEX step. Biotechnol. Bioeng. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Concepts: Improve, Water purification, Analytical chemistry, Control theory, Performance, Ion exchange, Failure assessment, Impurity


Occurrence and methods for the removal of nonylphenolic compounds in drinking water have been gaining increased attention due to their widespread presence in natural water and the potential health risks from the consumptions of drinking water. The purpose of this study was to assess the occurrence of nonylphenol (NP), octylphenol (OP), and bisphenol-A (BPA) in water sources and treated water in Taiwan, to evaluate the treatment efficiencies of these compounds in both the conventional (coagulation, sedimentation, filtration and chlorination) and advanced treatment processes. The treatment efficiencies of these chemicals were assessed based on their concentrations in water sources, and the results were verified with laboratory simulated treatment processes. A survey of NP, OP, and BPA in 11 Taiwanese water sources showed that all of them could be identified in most of the sampled sources, and that higher concentrations of NP were found when the raw water was contaminated by domestic wastewater. However, higher treatment efficiency could be observed when the NP concentration in water source is high. Laboratory simulation studies of conventional treatment processes showed that chlorination played an important role in the degradation of NP in raw water. Treatment efficiencies of 60%-90% were achieved for NP removal when sufficient chlorine dosages were applied to satisfy chlorine demands. However, results also showed that conventional coagulation and rapid filtration processes were less effective in the reduction of phenolic compounds in water.

Concepts: Water, Electrochemistry, Chemistry, Water purification, Assessment, Bisphenol A, Wastewater, Phenols