Issue 5, 2024

Moving beyond silver in point-of-use drinking water pathogen control


Managing drinking water-associated pathogens that can cause infections in immunocompromised individuals is a persistent challenge, particularly for healthcare facilities where occupant exposures carry a substantial health risk. Incremental advances in point-of-use (POU) devices and modified polymer materials now flood the market, promising to reduce cell concentrations and control biofilm formation. The current leading antimicrobial POU design incorporates silver (Ag), a long standing bacteriostatic used across wide ranging industries. This perspective highlights critical knowledge gaps and fundamental shortcomings associated with existing study designs in the silver-containing POU literature as well as the chemical and microbial processes that underline ongoing critical considerations for pathogen control in drinking water. As a result, we highlight the opportunity to leverage ongoing material discovery and collaboration across disciplines to move us closer towards an affordable, low maintenance approach that addresses the persistent pathogens challenge in drinking water.

Graphical abstract: Moving beyond silver in point-of-use drinking water pathogen control

Article information

Article type
01 Aug 2023
20 Feb 2024
First published
20 Feb 2024
This article is Open Access
Creative Commons BY license

Environ. Sci.: Water Res. Technol., 2024,10, 1009-1018

Moving beyond silver in point-of-use drinking water pathogen control

D. P. Huffman, S. Pitell, P. Moncure, J. Stout, J. E. Millstone, S. Haig and L. M. Gilbertson, Environ. Sci.: Water Res. Technol., 2024, 10, 1009 DOI: 10.1039/D3EW00564J

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