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Web Desk
December 28, 2015

A glass of water contains 10 mn ‘good bacteria’  

NEW DELHI: A glass of clean drinking water contains 10 million ‘good’ bacteria, which may help purify the water and keep it safe, a new study has claimed.

According to a report published in Indian Express, researchers have found that our drinking water is to a large extent purified by millions of “good bacteria” found in water pipes and purification plants.

So far, the knowledge about them has been practically non-existent, according to researchers, it said.

The report added that a glass of clean drinking water actually contains 10 million bacteria. But that is how it should be — clean tap water always contains harmless bacteria, researchers said.

These bacteria and other microbes grow in the drinking water treatment plant and on the inside of our water pipes, which can be seen in the form of a thin, sticky coating — a so-called biofilm. All surfaces from the raw water intake to the tap are covered in this biofilm. These findings show that the diversity of species of bacteria in water pipes is huge, and that bacteria may play a larger role than previously thought, the India media report said.

Among other things, the researchers suspect that a large part of water purification takes place in the pipes and not only in water purification plants. “A previously completely unknown ecosystem has revealed itself to us. Formerly, you could hardly see any bacteria at all and now, thanks to techniques such as massive DNA sequencing and flow cytometry, we suddenly see eighty thousand bacteria per millilitre in drinking water,” said Catherine Paul from Lund University in Sweden, according to the report.