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Clostridium perfringens and the more general group to which it belongs, “sulfite-reducing, spore forming anaerobes,” are considered with regard to their use as health effects, water quality indicators. The groups are examined with regard to their identification, their importance, the characteristics which impinge on their use as indicators, monitoring applications, available evaluation data, and enumeration methods. C. perfringens has specific and limited applications as a water quality indicator. It appears to be the fecal indicator of choice for measuring remote or intermittent pollution and in situations where resistance to disinfectants and environmental stress is at a premium.
bacteria, water pollution, coliform bacteria
Chief, Health Effects Research Laboratory-Cin., U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, West Kingston, R. I.