Sewage research in the Spanish city of A Coruña shows that Spain is probably on the eve of a fourth corona wave. The results show up to six times as many cases of corona than have been confirmed by PCR tests.
Our waste says more about us than we might think at first. Covid-19 is present in many cells in our body and particles of it come along with the stool. This faeces disappears into the sewage system. And analysis of this sewage water gives scientists a good picture of the corona situation in various places in Spain.
Sewage research shows six times as many contaminations
Since the start of the corona pandemic, several scientists have focused on a line of research. This relates to a continuous analysis of sewage water, including COVIDBens in the Spanish city of A Coruña. The Spanish newspaper El Correo Gallego writes on Monday that special conclusions are being drawn from this research. Because according to official figures based on PCR tests, there are 1,076 active corona cases in this city while according to research of wastewater there should be 6,802 cases.
Fourth corona wave just around the corner in Spain
This conclusion means that in two weeks – the time it takes Covid-19 on average to manifest – there will be six times as many corona cases in A Coruña. In the weeks leading up to the first three corona waves in Spain, an extreme increase in the presence of virus particles in wastewater was also visible. Not long after, a new wave emerged in Spain. This extreme increase in the virus in the wastewater in A Coruña could show that a fourth corona wave is coming, according to the lead researcher.
Scientists analyse and predict development of Covid-19
The COVIDBens team is multidisciplinary, and works together with the University of A Coruña. The team consists of microbiologists, chemists, statisticians, computer scientists and civil engineers. Since the arrival of the coronavirus in Spain, these scientists have been busy researching the virus. Additionally they are developing statistics to make predictions about how the virus will behave and devlop in different circumstances.
Important to roll out models in the rest of Spain
The importance of this research is therefore great, and those involved point out that it is important to also apply these models in other areas in Spain in order to continue to follow the development of the corona virus. This study has aleady proven three times that it can serve as an early warning against the coronavirus and that it is able to detect many asymptomatic patients who would not normally show up in a regular examination or screening.