Focus: Plumbing

Are biofilms from hospital shower pipes harmful?

February 7, 2019

New research said potentially pathogenic bacteria may be lurking in hospital water supply pipes, according to an article on the Becker's Hospital Review website.

Built infrastructures, such as the piping inside buildings, have a microbiome all their own, the research said.

In a study published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology, the authors used next-generation sequencing on nucleic acid found in 40 hospital shower hoses to culture bacteria and determine whether it could be harmful.

Although no well-known pathogens were found, some new bacteria with characteristics of species known to be harmful were seen.

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