Prof Makes Headlines with COVID Wastewater Project

Dr. Lawrence Goodridge

Dr. Lawrence Goodridge

Dr. Lawrence Goodridge, a food science professor in the Ontario Agricultural College, was interviewed by multiple media outlets recently about wastewater testing to monitor the spread of Omicron and other COVID-19 variants.

“Definitely, I would agree that it appears that the [Omicron wastewater] signal has flattened, but I think we need more data before we can say that definitively,” he said in the article by Sun Media, agreeing with the other researchers interviewed.

In an article by CBC, Goodridge made a similar comment in the same context.

Goodridge spoke with Yahoo Canada News on the topic as well. In the article, he said the method “doesn’t rely on people getting tested at the hospital,” and that once cases decline, which current trends show is happening with Omicron, it may be possible to resume tracing individual cases.

Sootoday.com also featured Goodridge in their article on wastewater testing. In the article, Goodridge said wastewater testing can help public health units, some of whom joined the project immediately after it was announced, identify trends in their region.

In an interview with CTV News Channel, Goodridge noted wastewater testing is a community-level indicator, meaning it provides an idea of whether cases are going up or down, and is not an exact indicator of current case counts. He cautioned that even though the curve in Omicron cases is flattening it could further spike with current restrictions easing and students returning to school within the province.

Goodridge leads the U of G wastewater monitoring project, and currently holds the Leung Family Professorship in Food Safety in the Food Science Department. His research focuses on food-borne pathogens, antibiotic resistance and food fraud.

 

Watch Goodridge’s interview with Sun Media below