Building capacity in support of wastewater-based epidemiology to aid public health decision-making in southwestern Ontario

Novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an acute respiratory disease induced by SARS-CoV-2. To date >1,000,000 deaths have been reported worldwide. Although testing capacity has expanded, Canada still faces challenges to realizing wider scale testing. A promising alternative to large-scale population testing in Canada may lie literally beneath our feet in our municipal sewer systems. This Mitacs program will measure SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA signal in wastewater system to track the trends in community infections of Windsor-Essex area and expand into London-Middlesex region. Wastewater-based epidemiology will provide an early-warning of re-emergence of infection in a community thus aiding in public health decision-making.

Intern: 
Qiudi Geng
Faculty Supervisor: 
Michael McKay
Province: 
Ontario
Partner University: 
Program: