Wastewater Surveillance Testing for Infectious Diseases

Explore tools and resources for wastewater surveillance testing

Wastewater surveillance is a useful tool for monitoring the regional spread of infectious diseases before an outbreak occurs. With the emergence of SARS-CoV-2 infections, multiple organizations worldwide are working on SARS-CoV-2 surveillance methods using wastewater to monitor regional or city-level spread of the virus, analyze individual dorms on campuses to identify asymptomatic carriers, capture emerging mutations, and respond to possible infections. Methods of detection and surveillance for SARS-CoV-2 are outlined in this webpage and can potentially be adapted for all pathogens, including viruses, bacteria, and fungi.

Wastewater surveillance testing workflow

Wastewater concentration workflow icon

Wastewater concentration

Wastewater samples must be concentrated and then extracted for improved detection and analysis. Concentration steps can range from precipitation, ultracentrifugation, to the most efficient and advanced, virus enrichment through Dynabeads.

Automated sample processing workflow icon

Automated sample processing

KingFisher instruments paired with MagMAX wastewater kits allow for a completely automated nucleic acid isolation format without inconvenient centrifugation, filtration, or bead beating steps.

Nucleic acid purification workflow icon

Nucleic acid purification

From the eluate containing concentrated viral particles, viral nucleic acid can be purified using the Applied Biosystems MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit. This kit allows for low-volume (1 mL), medium volume (10 mL), and high volume (50 mL) sample extraction.

Resources and tools

Wastewater concentration resources

Podcast on detection of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater

Infectious pathogen detection and surveillance

Infectious pathogen surveillance from wastewater and fecal samples has been recently adopted as a method for monitoring emergence and re-emergence of infectious pathogens. This method allows public health agencies, universities, hospitals, cruise lines, and more to detect a pathogen and respond before there is a community outbreak. Thermo Fisher Scientific has partnered with many labs globally to implement new wastewater testing systems and optimize existing wastewater monitoring processes. Listen in to learn about the importance of wastewater.

Automated sample processing resources

Webinar: From wastewater surveillance to human sample analysis

Infectious pathogen detection from human samples

Learn more about methods for wastewater detection from Thermo Fisher Scientific scientists Alexandre “Sasha” Vlassov, Madhu Jasti, and Emily Zeringer at American Science Microbe 2021. In which, the team describes protocols for fecal sample, rectal swab, and wastewater detection for SARS-CoV-2. Additionally, molecular workflows for detection and monitoring of pathogens and microbiota are outlined. The common issues of user time consumption and inconsistent results in sample preparation are addressed and resolved with automated workflows. These workflows allow for increased sensitivity, significant time savings, and increased productivity.

Nucleic acid purification resources

Podcast on wastewater testing and analysis of SARS-CoV-2

New infectious pathogen detection technologies

This 10-minute podcast covers SARS-CoV-2 molecular testing, from human sample analysis to wastewater surveillance. In which, Dr. Alexander ”Sasha“ Vlassov, Senior Manager of Research and Development at Thermo Fisher Scientific, discusses wastewater surveillance as a useful tool for monitoring the regional spread of viral pathogens, as well as three different testing options for SARS-CoV-2: detection of viral proteins or antigens, detection of viral nucleic acid by PCR, and detection of virus-specific antibodies in the blood.

Wastewater concentration

  • Fast isolation kinetics (~10 min)
  • Easy release (~10 min)
  • Easy to automate with Thermo Scientific Kingfisher instruments
  • Can be used on other negatively charged enveloped viruses, vesicles, and proteins
MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit

Concentration of wastewater through Dynabeads viral enrichment

The isolation principle behind Dynabeads Wastewater Virus Enrichment beads

Automated sample processing

Enable high throughput wastewater testing with KingFisher systems

The benefits of KingFisher Instruments include:

  • Various throughputs—process 6–96 samples per run depending on the instrument model
  • Interchangeable formats—choose 24- or 96-well plates so you can process a wide range of input volumes
  • Protocol customization—easily edit, modify, or create new protocols
  • Optimized reagents—compatible with multiple magnetic-bead reagents

Product information

KingFisher instrument
Duo Prime

Flex

Apex

Presto
Instrument sizeCompact benchtopBenchtopBenchtopBenchtop—integrates with robotic liquid handler
Throughput levelLow to mediumMedium to highMedium to highUltrahigh
Processing volume range 
  • 50-1,000 μL: 12-pin magnet head
  • 200-5,000 μL: 6-pin magnet head
  • 20-100 μL: 96-well PCR plate, skirted*
  • 20-200 μL: 96-well plate
  • 50-1,000 μL: 96 deep-well plate
  • 200-5,000 μL: 24 deep-well plate
  • 15-1,000 μL: 96 deep-well plate
  • 15-200 μL: 96-well KingFisher standard plate
  • 10-80 μL: 96-well PCR plate
  • 30-5,000 μL: 24 deep-well plate
  • 30-200 μL: 96 storage tubes
  • 200-1,000 μL: 24 storage tubes
  • 50-1,000 μL: 96 deep-well plate
  • 200-5,000 μL; 24 deep-well plate
  • 50-150 μL: 96-well KingFisher standard plate
Samples per run6 or 1224 or 9624 or 9624 or 96
Customizable protocolsYes, with PC softwareYes, with PC softwareYes, with touchscreen or PC softwareYes, with PC software
Heating/cooling
  • 10°C to 75°C (plate row block A)
  • 4°C to 75°C (elution strip block)
  • From 5°C above ambient temperature to 115°C
  • From 4°C above ambient temperature to 100°C
  • Cooling down to 4°C
  • From 5°C above ambient temperature to 115°C
Ultraviolet lamp8 watts (up to 16 hr)No2 UV lamps, max 23 h 59 minNo
Ordering information
  • KingFisher Duo Prime Purification System 5400110
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 96 PCR Head 5400610 
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 96 
  • KingFisher Head 5400620 
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 24 Deep-Well Head 5400640 
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 96 Deep-Well Head 5400630
 
  • KingFisher Presto Purification System with 24 Deep-Well Head. 5400840 
  • KingFisher Presto Purification System with 96 Deep-Well Head. 5400830

Nucleic acid purification

Flexibility

  • Choose your preferred concentration method and protocol
  • Pre-concentrate samples from large volumes using ultracentrifugation, precipitation, or filtration
  • Use the Dynabeads option for automated viral enrichment of up to 10 mL volume
  • Directly isolate from 1 mL of wastewater without concentration
  • Manual and automated protocols available

Whole workflow solution—Purchase the whole workflow from sample collection to analysis with one supplier. We can help you get started on a wastewater testing program.

Scalability—These automation compatible kits can help streamline your process to set up sampling across the scale of your organization. Automation-ready protocols written for KingFisher Flex, KingFisher APEX, and KingFisher Duo systems.

MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit

Product information

 
MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit

MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit, with Virus Enrichment
Who should use?Wastewater research and surveillance/community testing
Sample typesPre-concentrated wastewater and sludgeWastewater
Research needs
  • Flexibility—works with a variety of concentration protocols
  • Scalability—automatable technology
  • Total workflow—products from collection to analysis
  • Efficiency—concentration protocol and Dynabeads already included
  • Scalability—automatable technology
  • Total workflow—products from collection to analysis
Downstream compatibilityReal-time (quantitative) PCR (qPCR) and next-generation sequencing (NGS) automation-ready protocols, digital PCR designed for KingFisher Flex, APEX, and Duo Prime systems, plus manual protocols
Format20–100 preps depending on input volume
Time per run45 minutes for nucleic acid isolationLess than 2 hours for virus enrichment + nucleic acid isolation
Cat. No.A52606A52610
* Processing time for other sample types may vary.

Wastewater concentration resources

Podcast on detection of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater

Infectious pathogen detection and surveillance

Infectious pathogen surveillance from wastewater and fecal samples has been recently adopted as a method for monitoring emergence and re-emergence of infectious pathogens. This method allows public health agencies, universities, hospitals, cruise lines, and more to detect a pathogen and respond before there is a community outbreak. Thermo Fisher Scientific has partnered with many labs globally to implement new wastewater testing systems and optimize existing wastewater monitoring processes. Listen in to learn about the importance of wastewater.

Automated sample processing resources

Webinar: From wastewater surveillance to human sample analysis

Infectious pathogen detection from human samples

Learn more about methods for wastewater detection from Thermo Fisher Scientific scientists Alexandre “Sasha” Vlassov, Madhu Jasti, and Emily Zeringer at American Science Microbe 2021. In which, the team describes protocols for fecal sample, rectal swab, and wastewater detection for SARS-CoV-2. Additionally, molecular workflows for detection and monitoring of pathogens and microbiota are outlined. The common issues of user time consumption and inconsistent results in sample preparation are addressed and resolved with automated workflows. These workflows allow for increased sensitivity, significant time savings, and increased productivity.

Nucleic acid purification resources

Podcast on wastewater testing and analysis of SARS-CoV-2

New infectious pathogen detection technologies

This 10-minute podcast covers SARS-CoV-2 molecular testing, from human sample analysis to wastewater surveillance. In which, Dr. Alexander ”Sasha“ Vlassov, Senior Manager of Research and Development at Thermo Fisher Scientific, discusses wastewater surveillance as a useful tool for monitoring the regional spread of viral pathogens, as well as three different testing options for SARS-CoV-2: detection of viral proteins or antigens, detection of viral nucleic acid by PCR, and detection of virus-specific antibodies in the blood.

Wastewater concentration

  • Fast isolation kinetics (~10 min)
  • Easy release (~10 min)
  • Easy to automate with Thermo Scientific Kingfisher instruments
  • Can be used on other negatively charged enveloped viruses, vesicles, and proteins
MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit

Concentration of wastewater through Dynabeads viral enrichment

The isolation principle behind Dynabeads Wastewater Virus Enrichment beads

Automated sample processing

Enable high throughput wastewater testing with KingFisher systems

The benefits of KingFisher Instruments include:

  • Various throughputs—process 6–96 samples per run depending on the instrument model
  • Interchangeable formats—choose 24- or 96-well plates so you can process a wide range of input volumes
  • Protocol customization—easily edit, modify, or create new protocols
  • Optimized reagents—compatible with multiple magnetic-bead reagents

Product information

KingFisher instrument
Duo Prime

Flex

Apex

Presto
Instrument sizeCompact benchtopBenchtopBenchtopBenchtop—integrates with robotic liquid handler
Throughput levelLow to mediumMedium to highMedium to highUltrahigh
Processing volume range 
  • 50-1,000 μL: 12-pin magnet head
  • 200-5,000 μL: 6-pin magnet head
  • 20-100 μL: 96-well PCR plate, skirted*
  • 20-200 μL: 96-well plate
  • 50-1,000 μL: 96 deep-well plate
  • 200-5,000 μL: 24 deep-well plate
  • 15-1,000 μL: 96 deep-well plate
  • 15-200 μL: 96-well KingFisher standard plate
  • 10-80 μL: 96-well PCR plate
  • 30-5,000 μL: 24 deep-well plate
  • 30-200 μL: 96 storage tubes
  • 200-1,000 μL: 24 storage tubes
  • 50-1,000 μL: 96 deep-well plate
  • 200-5,000 μL; 24 deep-well plate
  • 50-150 μL: 96-well KingFisher standard plate
Samples per run6 or 1224 or 9624 or 9624 or 96
Customizable protocolsYes, with PC softwareYes, with PC softwareYes, with touchscreen or PC softwareYes, with PC software
Heating/cooling
  • 10°C to 75°C (plate row block A)
  • 4°C to 75°C (elution strip block)
  • From 5°C above ambient temperature to 115°C
  • From 4°C above ambient temperature to 100°C
  • Cooling down to 4°C
  • From 5°C above ambient temperature to 115°C
Ultraviolet lamp8 watts (up to 16 hr)No2 UV lamps, max 23 h 59 minNo
Ordering information
  • KingFisher Duo Prime Purification System 5400110
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 96 PCR Head 5400610 
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 96 
  • KingFisher Head 5400620 
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 24 Deep-Well Head 5400640 
  • KingFisher Flex Purification System with 96 Deep-Well Head 5400630
 
  • KingFisher Presto Purification System with 24 Deep-Well Head. 5400840 
  • KingFisher Presto Purification System with 96 Deep-Well Head. 5400830

Nucleic acid purification

Flexibility

  • Choose your preferred concentration method and protocol
  • Pre-concentrate samples from large volumes using ultracentrifugation, precipitation, or filtration
  • Use the Dynabeads option for automated viral enrichment of up to 10 mL volume
  • Directly isolate from 1 mL of wastewater without concentration
  • Manual and automated protocols available

Whole workflow solution—Purchase the whole workflow from sample collection to analysis with one supplier. We can help you get started on a wastewater testing program.

Scalability—These automation compatible kits can help streamline your process to set up sampling across the scale of your organization. Automation-ready protocols written for KingFisher Flex, KingFisher APEX, and KingFisher Duo systems.

MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit

Product information

 
MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit

MagMAX Wastewater Ultra Nucleic Acid Isolation Kit, with Virus Enrichment
Who should use?Wastewater research and surveillance/community testing
Sample typesPre-concentrated wastewater and sludgeWastewater
Research needs
  • Flexibility—works with a variety of concentration protocols
  • Scalability—automatable technology
  • Total workflow—products from collection to analysis
  • Efficiency—concentration protocol and Dynabeads already included
  • Scalability—automatable technology
  • Total workflow—products from collection to analysis
Downstream compatibilityReal-time (quantitative) PCR (qPCR) and next-generation sequencing (NGS) automation-ready protocols, digital PCR designed for KingFisher Flex, APEX, and Duo Prime systems, plus manual protocols
Format20–100 preps depending on input volume
Time per run45 minutes for nucleic acid isolationLess than 2 hours for virus enrichment + nucleic acid isolation
Cat. No.A52606A52610
* Processing time for other sample types may vary.