Drug metabolites found in wastewater

March 16, 2006

University of Buffalo chemists say they've identified metabolites of two antibiotics and a medial imaging agent at wastewater treatment plants.

The chemists said data from their landmark discovery will allow wastewater treatment plants to begin monitoring for those byproducts.

The researchers said their discovery also reinforces concerns about excreted pharmaceutical compounds from wastewater systems that might end up in water supplies, potentially resulting in adverse effects for humans and the environment.

The UB scientists identified the metabolites for sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim, commonly prescribed antibiotics, and for a synthetic estrogen, a common ingredient in birth control pills and in hormone replacement therapy.

The chemists obtained the water samples from local wastewater treatment plants in the Western New York towns of Amherst, East Aurora, Lackawanna, Tonawanda and Holland -- representing suburban, urban and rural areas.

They sampled effluent before and after each water-treatment stage to examine relative efficiencies of each treatment process.

The research was presented Thursday in Orlando, Fla., during the annual Pittsburgh Conference on Analytical Chemistry and Applied Spectroscopy.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Fixing cities' water crises could send our climate targets down the gurgler

Related Stories

Tracking wastewater's path to wells, groundwater

January 24, 2018

We often "flush it and forget it" when it comes to waste from toilets and sinks. However, it's important to be able to track this wastewater to ensure it doesn't end up in unwanted places. A group of Canadian scientists has ...

Recommended for you

Unprecedented study of Picasso's bronzes uncovers new details

February 17, 2018

Musee national Picasso-Paris and the Northwestern University/Art Institute of Chicago Center for Scientific Studies in the Arts (NU-ACCESS) have completed the first major material survey and study of the Musee national Picasso-Paris' ...

Researchers create first superatomic 2-D semiconductor

February 16, 2018

Atoms are the basic building blocks of all matter—at least, that is the conventional picture. In a new study, researchers have fabricated the first superatomic 2-D semiconductor, a material whose basic units aren't atoms ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.