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Public health is attracting increasing attention due to the current global pandemic, and wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) has emerged as a powerful tool for monitoring of public health by analysis of a variety of biomarkers (e.g., chemicals and pathogens) in wastewater. Rapid development of WBE requires rapid and on-site analytical tools for monitoring of sewage biomarkers to provide immediate decision and intervention. Biosensors have been demonstrated to be highly sensitive and selective tools for the analysis of sewage biomarkers due to their fast response, ease-to-use, low cost and the potential for field-testing. This paper presents biosensors as effective tools for wastewater analysis of potential biomarkers and monitoring of public health via WBE. In particular, we discuss the use of sewage sensors for rapid detection of a range of targets, including rapid monitoring of community-wide illicit drug consumption and pathogens for early warning of infectious diseases outbreaks. Finally, we provide a perspective on the future use of the biosensor technology for WBE to enable rapid on-site monitoring of sewage, which will provide nearly real-time data for public health assessment and effective intervention. Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier Ltd.


Kang Mao, Hua Zhang, Yuwei Pan, Zhugen Yang. Biosensors for wastewater-based epidemiology for monitoring public health. Water research. 2021 Mar 01;191:116787

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PMID: 33421639

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