Influence of solution chemistry on the inactivation of particle-associated viruses by UV irradiation

Zhe Feng, Ruiqing Lu, Baoling Yuan, Zhenming Zhou, Qingqing Wu, Thanh H. Nguyen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


MS2 inactivation by UV irradiance was investigated with the focus on how the disinfection efficacy is influenced by bacteriophage MS2 aggregation and adsorption to particles in solutions with different compositions. Kaolinite and Microcystis aeruginosa were used as model inorganic and organic particles, respectively. In the absence of model particles, MS2 aggregates formed in either 1 mM NaCl at pH = 3 or 50–200 mM ionic strength CaCl2 solutions at pH = 7 led to a decrease in the MS2 inactivation efficacy because the virions located inside the aggregate were protected from the UV irradiation. In the presence of kaolinite and Microcystis aeruginosa, MS2 adsorbed onto the particles in either 1 mM NaCl at pH = 3 or 50–200 mM CaCl2 solutions at pH = 7. In contrast to MS2 aggregates formed without the presence of particles, more MS2 virions adsorbed on these particles were exposed to UV irradiation to allow an increase in MS2 inactivation. In either 1 mM NaCl at pH from 4 to 8 or 2–200 mM NaCl solutions at pH = 7, the absence of MS2 aggregation and adsorption onto the model particles explained why MS2 inactivation was not influenced by pH, ionic strength, and the presence of model particles in these conditions. The influence of virus adsorption and aggregation on the UV disinfection efficiency found in this research suggests the necessity of accounting for particles and cation composition in virus inactivation for drinking water.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)622-628
Number of pages7
JournalColloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces
StatePublished - Dec 1 2016


  • Kaolinite
  • MS2
  • Microcystis aeruginosa
  • Particle-association
  • UV disinfection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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