Why do we treat water?
While a big part of why people invest so much in water treatment is to remove contaminants like toxic organic chemicals and inorganic contaminants like salts and metals, often the most pressing threats in untreated water are pathogenic organisms. Pathogens are microscopic organisms that include bacteria such as E. coli and Salmonella and viruses such as norovirus, but can also be parasitic protozoa such as Giardia lamblia, the organism that causes "beaver fever". These organisms are often more difficult to kill, and can cause serious illness if ingested.
Until recently, we at BioLargo Water focused much of our research on our Advanced Oxidation System's (AOS) ability to kill bacteria and viruses endemic to industrial livestock and agricultural wastewater treatment settings because of large market pull from those industries. Just recently, however, we started a research project to prove the AOS can kill protozoa like Giardia.
This project is in collaboration with Hyperion Research Ltd in Medicine Hat, AB, and is funded by an Alberta Innovates Microvoucher!
This project started early this year, and we already have results that suggest the AOS may be a powerful means to eliminate two protozoan parasites from water: Giardia lamblia and Cryptosporidium, another troublesome water pathogen. These results give promise that the AOS could provide an effective and cost-efficient treatment for water containing protozoan parasites!
All around the world, fresh water sources can be contaminated with these types of organisms – soon the AOS may provide an effective and inexpensive solution.
We would like to thank Alberta Innovates for funding this research through a Microvoucher grant, and Hyperion Research for conducting the protozoa enumeration and viability testing.