Research groups of the UB



Under the direction of Professor Rosina Gironès Llop, the team is composed of 2  senior researchers, Dr. Silvia Bofill-Mas and Dr. Ayalkibet Hundesa, one responsible for quality control and complemented by a variable number of PhD students.

Facilities & Lab Equipment

  • Biosecurity II Laboratory, shared laboratory areas and equipment and portable devices
  • Computational Services in collaboration with Compgen (Computational Genomics Group UB)
  • Access to all sort of scientific technical instrumentation and facilities at University of Barcelona CCiT-UB


Departament of Genetics, Microbiology and Statistics

Biology Faculty, University of Barcelona, 643 Diagonal Ave. Prevosti Building, ground floor, 08028 Barcelona.



With more than 20 years’ experience in the field of virology, the Laboratory of Virus Contaminants of Water and Food focuses its research in the study of pathogens as adenovirus, polyomavirus, hepatitis A and E virus and other bacteria, protozoan parasites and emergent virus that may be present in water and food and can be the cause of multiple diseases in animals and humans.



  • Detection, identification, quantification and tracking of contaminant virus in:Water: raw sewage, slimes and biosolids, domestic wastewater, industrial wastewater, underground waters, potable waters, rivers, sea and water wells, water treatment plants
    Food: bivalves mollusks, vegetables, meat and other foods
  • Detection of faecal contamination indicators: bacteria, new human viral indicators and other pathogens
  • Pilot plants/process assessment and new disinfection protocols implementation for water virus and the food industry
  • Microbiologic control of new technologies and treatments for the raw sewage reuse and water management in circular economy
  • Development and use of new and standard molecular methods to apply in virology from water, food and clinical samples:- Cellular and microbial cultures
    – Genomic (PCR, qPCR , NGS sequencing) and proteomic studies
    – Electronic and fluorescence microscopy
  • Metagenomic studies for the characterization of new and emergent viruses
  • Training, Technical advice and Education of qualified staff
  • Available Virus and Pathogens:
    – Hepatitis A and E (HAV, HEV)
    – Polyomavirus humans: JCPyv BKPyV MCPyV
    – Adenovirus
    – Norovirus
    – Enterovirus
    – Rotavirus
    – Microbial Source Tracking Indicators: JCPyV HAdV
    – Animal specific virus:  pigs, rumiants, bovine, poultry
    – E.coli
    – Intestinal Enterococcus
    – Protozoan parasites
    – Other emergent human virus


Industrials sectors

  • Health
  • Food
  • Industrial Processes
  • Energy and Resources


  • Generalitat de Catalunya
  • Agència Catalana de l’Aigua
  • Hydrolab Microbiologica
  • Oliver Rodés
  • OXFAM Intermon
  • Coca Cola


Research projects

  • Virus, bacteris i protozous d’interès en seguretat alimentaria, detecció I control en la era de la metagenòmica. I.P. Rosina Gironès i Rosa Araujo. MINECO (AGL2017-86797-C2-1-R. (2018-2021).
  • New metagenomics and molecular based tools for european scale identification and control of emergent microbial contaminants in irrigation water (MetaWater) I.P. Rosina Gironès. Water JPI EU (2013-095-C03-01). 2015-2017)
  • Detección sensible de virus transmitidos por alimentos utilizando amplificación dirigida y NGS y evaluación de la transmisión y patología de los virus DNA excretados.
 I.P. Rosina Gironès i Sílvia Bofill. MINECO (AGL2014-55081-R) (2015-2018)
  • Development of an affordable point-of-use test for detection of enteric viruses and viral faecal indicators in water (VirWaTest). I.P. Sílvia Bofill i Rosina Gironès. Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF)(2015-2016)



Primer genomic sequences and probe to quantify bovine poliomavirus (BPyV) and porcine adenovirus (PAdV)” Reg #200902244; #200900596. 2009. SCience and Technology Ministry (MICYT) Inventors: Rosa Girones llop, Ayalkibet Hundesa Gonfa, Carlos Maluquer de Motes Porta.


Fernandez-Cassi X, et al. Metagenomics for the study of viruses in urban sewage as a tool for public health surveillance. Sci Total Environ. 2018. 618:870-880.

Gonzales-Gustavson E, et al. 2017. Identification of sapovirus GV.2, astrovirus VA3 and novel anelloviruses in serum from patients with acute hepatitis of unknown aetiology. 2010. PLoS ONE12(10): e0185911

Rusiñol M, et al. Application of human and animal viral microbial source tracking tools in fresh and marine waters from five different geographical areas. Water Res.2014. 59:119-29.

Other group publications

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