Author(s): Mieszkin S, Furet JP, Corthier G, Gourmelon M
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Abstract The microbiological quality of coastal or river water can be affected by fecal contamination from human or animal sources. To discriminate pig fecal pollution from other pollution, a library-independent microbial source tracking method targeting Bacteroidales host-specific 16S rRNA gene markers by real-time PCR was designed. Two pig-specific Bacteroidales markers (Pig-1-Bac and Pig-2-Bac) were designed using 16S rRNA gene Bacteroidales clone libraries from pig feces and slurry. For these two pig markers, 98 to 100\% sensitivity and 100\% specificity were obtained when tested by TaqMan real-time PCR. A decrease in the concentrations of Pig-1-Bac and Pig-2-Bac markers was observed throughout the slurry treatment chain. The two newly designed pig-specific Bacteroidales markers, plus the human-specific (HF183) and ruminant-specific (BacR) Bacteroidales markers, were then applied to river water samples (n = 24) representing 14 different sites from the French Daoulas River catchment (Brittany, France). Pig-1-Bac and Pig-2-Bac were quantified in 25\% and 62.5\%, respectively, of samples collected around pig farms, with concentrations ranging from 3.6 to 4.1 log10 copies per 100 ml of water. They were detected in water samples collected downstream from pig farms but never detected near cattle farms. HF183 was quantified in 90\% of water samples collected downstream near Daoulas town, with concentrations ranging between 3.6 and 4.4 log10 copies per 100 ml of water, and BacR in all water samples collected around cattle farms, with concentrations ranging between 4.6 and 6.0 log10 copies per 100 ml of water. The results of this study highlight that pig fecal contamination was not as frequent as human or bovine fecal contamination and that fecal pollution generally came from multiple origins. The two pig-specific Bacteroidales markers can be applied to environmental water samples to detect pig fecal pollution.
This article was published in Appl Environ Microbiol
and referenced in International Journal of Waste Resources