Water Sector

Next step in research on L. pneumophila growth conditions

Article in Applied and Environmental Microbiology

KWR has taken an extra step in our understanding of the conditions that favour the growth of L. pneumophila. These bacteria cause the serious lung infection legionellosis. L. pneumophila growth is favoured on pipe material that is exposed to drinking water that does not contain a disinfectant.

Research using a Boiler Biofilm Monitor

This month the scientific journal, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, will be publishing an article written by former KWR colleague Dick van der Kooij and Harm Veenendaal, Geo Bakker of Vitens, and Ronald Italiaander and Bart Wullings of KWR. The article describes the results of research into the growth conditions of L. pneumophila. The research made use of the KWR-developed Boiler Biofilm Monitor (BBM) system. The results establish that a very low concentration of biologically degradable components (microgram-per-litre) in water is sufficient to indirectly enable the growth of L. pneumophila [threshold concentration of < 50 pg ATP cm-2 (TCC <1-2×106 cells cm-2)].

Applied and Environmental Microbiology is putting the article in the spotlight, which includes issuing a press release.