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Terra Latinoamericana

On-line version ISSN 2395-8030Print version ISSN 0187-5779


OLIVAS-ENRIQUEZ, Evangelina et al. Fecal Indicators and Pathogens in Water Discharged into the Rio Grande. Terra Latinoam [online]. 2011, vol.29, n.4, pp.449-457. ISSN 2395-8030.

There are few available studies based on microbial enteropathogens to confirm the different impacts of microbial contamination of the Rio Grande on the northern border, although some data show daily discharges of millions of gallons of wastewater, most without the slightest treatment. The river’s lower reaches are the final destination of the sewage from cities and towns, agricultural drainage and industrial discharges, suggesting a high and dangerous pollution. Water samples were analyzed, from drains and canals that empty into the Rio Grande, on both sides of the border Juarez-El Paso. The parameters used to determine the microbiological quality of water were Cryptosporidium and Giardia counting, as fecal indicators by immunomagnetic separation and immunofluorescence techniques, as well as of total coliform bacteria and Escherichia coli, using the membrane filtration technique. The results showed the presence of both parasites and bacteria in all samples, with different number fluctuations attributed to the type of downloads. We observed a slightly higher number of parasites and bacteria in samples from the Mexican side. Likewise, in both borders is found a slightly greater number of Giardia than Cryptosporidium. Currently, the inevitable presence of enteropathogens in the Rio Grande water constitutes a health risk, especially for farmers who use irrigation and agricultural products for human consumption, as well for peoplethat are in touch with water from the river.

Keywords : wastewater; polluted rivers; coliforms; Cryptosporidium; Giardia.

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