SARS-CoV-2 RNA levels in Scotland’s wastewater

Livia Scorza, Graeme J. Cameron, Roisin Murray Williams, David Findlay, Julie Bolland, Brindusa Cerghizan, Kirsty Campbell, David Thomson, Alexander Corbishley, David Gally, Stephen Fitzgerald, Alison Low, Sean McAteer, Adrian Roberts, Zhou Fang, Claus Dieter Mayer, Anastasia Frantsuzova, Sumy V Baby, Tomasz Zielinski, Andrew J Millar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Nationwide, wastewater-based monitoring was newly established in Scotland to track the levels of SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA shed into the sewage network, during the COVID-19 pandemic. We present a curated, reference dataset produced by this national programme, from May 2020 to February 2022. Viral levels were analysed by RT-qPCR assays of the N1 gene, on RNA extracted from wastewater sampled at 162 locations. Locations were sampled up to four times per week, typically once or twice per week, and in response to local needs. We report sampling site locations with geographical coordinates, the total population in the catchment for each site, and the information necessary for data normalisation, such as the incoming wastewater flow values and ammonia concentration, when these were available. The methodology for viral quantification and data analysis is briefly described, with links to detailed protocols online. These wastewater data are contributing to estimates of disease prevalence and the viral reproduction number (R) in Scotland and in the UK.

Original languageEnglish
Article number713
Number of pages9
JournalScientific Data
Issue number713
Publication statusPublished - 18 Nov 2022


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  • World Water Day 2023, Scotland

    Andrew Millar (Invited speaker) & Michael C Lockhart (Invited speaker)

    22 Mar 2023

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in workshop, seminar, course

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