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Pathogenic bacteria in ambient water bodies are a serious concern for the environment and public health.1 According to the EPA's national summary of impaired waters, approximately 40,235 water bodies are impaired; approximately 15% of the total 71,363 impairments are due to water borne pathogens.In the United States (as of 2011), the EPA had assessed 1,550,689 km of streams and found that 53 percent were impaired. The estimation of the World Health Organization (WHO) indicates that approximately 3.2 million deaths each year are associated with water contamination. This accounts for about 6% of all deaths globally.

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