Bacteriophage biocontrol in wastewater treatment

  • Sabah A. A. JassimEmail author
  • Richard G. Limoges
  • Hassan El-Cheikh


Waterborne bacterial pathogens in wastewater remains an important public health concern, not only because of the environmental damage, morbidity and mortality that they cause, but also due to the high cost of disinfecting wastewater by using physical and chemical methods in treatment plants. Bacteriophages are proposed as bacterial pathogen indicators and as an alternative biological method for wastewater treatment. Phage biocontrol in large scale treatment requires adaptive and aggressive phages that are able to overcome the environmental forces that interfere with phage–host interactions while targeting unwanted bacterial pathogens and preventing biofilms and foaming. This review will shed light on aspects of using bacteriophage programming technology in wastewater plants to rapidly target and reduce undesirable bacteria without harming the useful bacteria needed for biodegradation.


Bacteriophage Phage reprogramming technology Biocontrol Water Wastewater treatment Sewage Activated sludge process 



Activated sludge process


Plaque forming units


United Nations Children’s Fund




World Economic Forum


World Health Organization


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sabah A. A. Jassim
    • 1
    Email author
  • Richard G. Limoges
    • 1
  • Hassan El-Cheikh
    • 1
  1. 1.Applied Bio Research Inc.WindsorCanada

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