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Retrospective mass spectrometric analysis of wastewater-fed mesocosms to assess the degradation of drugs and their human metabolites

AuthorsSabater, Laia; Montemurro, Nicola; Ginebreda, Antonio; Barceló, Damià CSIC ORCID; Eichhorn, Peter; Pérez, Sandra
Natural attenuation
Human metabolites
Transformation products
Issue Date15-Apr-2021
CitationJournal of Hazardous Materials 408:124984 (2021)
AbstractTemporary rivers become dependent on wastewater effluent for base flows, which severely impacts river ecosystems through exposure to elevated levels of nutrients, dissolved organic matter, and organic micropollutants. However, biodegradation processes occurring in these rivers can be enhanced by wastewater bacteria/biofilms. Here, we evaluated the attenuation of pharmaceuticals and their human metabolites performing retrospective analysis of 120 compounds (drugs, their metabolites and transformation products) in mesocosm channels loaded with wastewater effluents twice a week for a period of 31 days. Eighteen human metabolites and seven biotransformation products were identified with high level of confidence. Compounds were classified into five categories. Type-A: recalcitrant drugs and metabolites (diclofenac, carbamazepine and venlafaxine); Type-B: degradable drugs forming transformation products (TPs) (atenolol, sitagliptin, and valsartan); Type-C: drugs for which no known human metabolites or TPs were detected (atorvastatin, azithromycin, citalopram, clarithromycin, diltiazem, eprosartan, fluconazole, ketoprofen, lamotrigine, lormetazepam, metformin, telmisartan, and trimethoprim); Type-D: recalcitrant drug metabolites (4-hydroxy omeprazole sulfide, erythro/threo-hydrobupropion, and zolpidem carboxylic acid); Type-E: unstable metabolites whose parent drug was not detectable (norcocaine, benzolylecgonine, and erythromycin A enol ether). Noteworthy was the valsartan acid formation from valsartan with transient formation of TP-336.
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.124984
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