Scientists stand on a bridge over a collection tank at a wastewater treatment plant
(Photo : Robert Garvey/Handout via REUTERS ) Scientists stand on a bridge over a collection tank at a wastewater treatment plant an unknown location in Australia, this undated handout picture.

The United Kingdom government is seeking advice from scientists on whether testing the sewage to trace the scale coronavirus outbreak in Britain is possible. Meanwhile, other European countries are already monitoring sewage to control the spread of the coronavirus.

Researches in Switzerland, France, and the Netherlands suggest parts of the virus are shed by infected people in their feces and urine. This could later offer health officials with an early warning system for COVID-19 in the future even before individuals show symptoms.

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Scientists stand on a bridge over a collection tank at a wastewater treatment plant
(Photo : Robert Garvey/Handout via REUTERS )
Scientists stand on a bridge over a collection tank at a wastewater treatment plant an unknown location in Australia, this undated handout picture.

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It can take five to 11 days for the characteristic symptoms of fever and a persistent cough to show. On infected people

On Apr. 23, researchers from Newcastle University said they have started collecting information about coronavirus from sewage in England.

While the virus does not spread through wastewater systems, monitoring the virus through sewage is called wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE), it provides significant details clues about public health.

"We are actively engaging with the research community and government scientific advisers to investigate whether monitoring wastewater could be used as a way of tracking the prevalence of the virus," said DEFRA in a statement given to MailOnline, although The WHO is clear there is currently no evidence coronavirus has been transmitted via sewerage systems.'

With the current status of the pandemic, people are now interested in how to prevent multiple waves. Primarily, the Government's 'test, track, and trace' strategy will help her isolate anyone infected by the virus to stop the spread.

Sewage epidemiology

Sewage epidemiology has already started worldwide to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is particularly useful as countries emerge from lockdowns despite risks of a resurgence of infections.

Similarly, a spokesperson for the Centers for Disease Control in the US told POLITICO last week how the agency explores the potential for wastewater testing.

Researchers in Switzerland had detected low concentrations of coronavirus in wastewater since February when the first cases of infection were recorded in the country.

'We didn't expect that we'd already been able to measure a signal in wastewater from Lugano, with only one, and from Zurich, with only six known cases,' Tamar Kohn from the EPFL research institute, in Lausanne, said in a statement.

'Wastewater doesn't lie, and it reflects what is excreted by the public within a few hours,' team leader Christoph Ort from the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology said in a statement.

Researchers from the Netherlands also alerted that sewage could provide an early warning or tracking system of SARS-CoV-2, as remnants of the virus are passed into the system from human waste.

The KWR Water Research Institute team has studied the sewage samples from seven cities seeking for evidence of COVID-19. They found out that even a few people reported coronavirus in the country cases, traces of the virus were still present in the sewers.

'The detection of the virus in sewage is low, which indicates that sewage surveillance could be a sensitive tool to monitor the circulation of the virus in the population.'

Researchers from the Sorbonne University and Eau de Paris also concluded that monitoring of wastewater 'may provide an alternative and possibly early tool to detect pathogens in populations when investigations in humans are difficult for logistic, ethical or economic reasons'.

Should the system work, sewage samples could let public health officials see a resurgence of COVID-19 infections earlier than with diagnostic tests - perhaps by around a week, the Swiss team believes.

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