Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Maryland Searches Sewage for SARS-CoV-2

Maryland has launched a state-wide program to test wastewater for SARS-CoV-2, the Washington Post reports.

In April, researchers from Biobot Analytics reported that they could detect SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater samples from Massachusetts from after the pandemic began, but not before. Universities and cities have since turned to testing by Biobot or others to identify COVID-19 hotspots. For instance, the University of Arizona identified two people with asymptomatic illness after uncovering SARS-CoV-2 in sewage from their dorm, and Chicago plans to begin testing its sewage for the virus.

According to the Post, Maryland started a pilot wastewater testing program in July that focused on five counties. This, it adds, provided state officials an idea of where the virus might be surging. Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, a Republican, announced the state would spend $1 million to roll the program out statewide, an effort the Post reports kicked off in mid-December.

"It's one of the tools in the toolbox," Manoj Dadlani, the CEO of CosmosID, which is analyzing the Maryland samples, tells the Post. "It can't solve everything, but it's a useful tool in terms of decisions, in terms of policy and ramping up testing."

The Scan

Dropped Charges

The US Justice Department has dropped visa fraud charges against five Chinese researchers, according to the Wall Street Journal.

More Kids

The Associated Press says Moderna is expanding its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine study to included additional children and may include even younger children.

PNAS Papers on Rat Clues to Human Migration, Thyroid Cancer, PolyG-DS

In PNAS this week: ancient rat genome analysis gives hints to human migrations, WDR77 gene mutations in thyroid cancer, and more.

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.