Sewage could help researchers studying spread of coronavirus

STAFFORD, Va. — Researchers hope that data collected from wastewater treatment plants will help identify and predict future spreads of the coronavirus.

The Free Lance-Star reported Tuesday that two wastewater treatment plants in Virginia’s Stafford County are among more than 100 across the country taking part in a pilot program.

Metabolites in human waste can serve as an early indicator of the disease before it spreads. Sewage offers useful data without collecting personal identifiable information. It also captures virus data from people who displayed mild symptoms or no symptoms.

The study is being led by Biobot Analytics of Somerville, Massachusetts.

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