Detection of Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) in Wastewater

Wastewater Surveillance of COVID-19 is highly recommended by the European Commission

After thorough research and collected case studies, many cities and municipalities are adopting strategies to detect and monitor the genetic material of SARS CoV-2 in wastewater. This serves as an early indicator to localize the spread of COVID-19 and offers valuable information for tracking outbreaks and predicting new epicenters of infection. 


European Commission considers Wastewater Monitoring as a complementary and independent approach to COVID-19 surveillance and testing strategies and adopted a recommendation on monitoring COVID-19 and its variants in wastewaters in the EU.

Member States are strongly encouraged to put a national wastewater surveillance system in place as soon as possible, targeted at the systematic data collection of SARS-CoV-2 and its variants in wastewaters.

The monitoring system should include at least wastewaters from large cities with over 150,000 inhabitants, preferably with a minimum sampling frequency of two samples per week. 

Global wastewater experts agree that further research and best practices are needed to develop and optimize appropriate sample collection, preparation and testing approaches. Untreated wastewater samples need to be prepared easily and efficiently prior to extraction and detection of the SARS-CoV-2 genomic RNA using real-time PCR.

See how we can support testing for SARS-CoV-2 in your wastewater samples.

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Sartorius Solutions for Wastewater Monitoring

Concentration of Viruses and VLPs by Ultrafiltration 

Ultrafiltration is an ideal and widely-used method for viral particle isolation and concentration from water and wasterwater samples prior to detection methods such as RT-PCR.

See how Vivaspin® ultrafilters (with 50 kDa MWCO PES membranes) have been used for concentration of wastewater samples prior to RT-qPCR detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA: Post-lockdown detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in the wastewater of Montpellier, France
Julie Trottier, Regis Darques, Nassim Ait Mouheb, Emma Partiot, Wiliam Bakhache, Maika S Deffieu, Raphael Gaudin, medRxiv doi:

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Membrane Filtration

A wide range of membrane filters for aqueous solutions with high flow rates. Available for particle retention in multiple diameters and pore sizes.

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Particle Removal with Vacuum Filtration Units

Sartolab® RF/BT vacuum filtration units are single-use units designed for the filtration of sample volumes of up to 1 L. The filtration unit may be used as a standalone system or with the Sartolab® Multistation, which allows parallel filtration of up to six samples.

Filtration Holders & Support Accessories

Versatile, reusable all-glass vacuum filter unit and holder for analytical determinations and particle removal from solvents. 

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Pipetting and Sample Transfer – Picus® Nxt Electronic, Tacta® Mechanical Pipettes and SafetySpace Pipette Tips

As RNA preparation and RT-PCR are pipetting-intensive protocols, precise and accurate pipetting can easily be compromised. Given the importance of rapid and reliable test results, it is crucial that pipette and aerosol barrier filter tips enable quick execution while protecting samples from cross-contamination. 

Ergonomically designed Sartorius mechanical Tacta® and electronic Picus® and Picus® Nxt pipettes are easy to clean and resistant, making regular decontamination simple during coronavirus testing. 

RNase | DNase free pre-sterilized Safetyspace Filter tips help protect samples from contamination.

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Nuclease-Free Ultrapure Water

Nuclease-free water can be utilized in several steps of RNA concentration, extraction and detection workflow, including resuspension of solid phase of wastewater samples after centrifugation and elution after binding on membranes followed by PCR detection. Sartorius’ Arium® Ultrapure Water Systems - equipped with an integrated or external ultrafilter - guarantee an on-demand supply of nuclease-free water.

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Supporting YOUR PCR Testing

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SARS-CoV-2 Coronavirus in environmental, air and water samples

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