Self-Purificatory Ganga Water Facilitates Death of Pathogenic Escherichia coli O157:H7
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Concern over the prevalence of active pharmaceutical agents and subsequent occurrence of antimicrobial resistance in the environment is increasing. Incorruptible ability of Ganga water was evaluated using fresh, 8-year-old, and 16-year-old Ganga water samples spiked with pathogenic Escherichia coli serotype O157:H7. Survival of E. coli O157:H7 over the course of the experiment was 3, 7, and 15 days for fresh, 8-year-old, and 16-year-old Ganga waters, respectively. On the contrary, in Milli Q water the decline in viable count of E. coli O157:H7 up to 30 days was only 2 log units. Survival of E. coli O157:H7 was greater in boiled water compared with water after passage through a 0.2-μm-pore-size membrane filter, indicating involvement of heat-labile agents influencing survival of E. coli O157:H7 in Ganga water, which seems to indicate the role of antimicrobial peptides. Functional diversity of Ganga water’s native microbial community structure as assessed with Biolog Eco plates was not affected even in the presence of a 5-fold log units higher pathogenic load of E. coli O157:H7. These findings suggest that Ganga water has certain novel antimicrobial attributes, besides its remarkable fluidity, which may provide a much-needed basis for the development of new antimicrobial compounds.