Colloids as a sink for certain pharmaceutical in the aquatic environment

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Journal Article
Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 2010, 17 (4), pp. 898 - 907
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The occurrence and fate of pharmaceuticals in the aquatic environment is recognized as one of the emerging issues in environmental chemistry and as a matter of public concern. Existing data tend to focus on the concentrations of pharmaceuticals in the aqueous phase, with limited studies on their concentrations in particulate phase such as sediments. Furthermore, current water quality monitoring does not differentiate between soluble and colloidal phases in water samples, hindering our understanding of the bioavailability and bioaccumulation of pharmaceuticals in aquatic organisms. In this study, an investigation was conducted into the concentrations and phase association (soluble, colloidal, suspended particulate matter or SPM) of selected pharmaceuticals (propranolol, sulfamethoxazole, meberverine, thioridazine, carbamazepine, tamoxifen, indomethacine, diclofenac, and meclofenamic acid) in river water, effluents from sewage treatment works (STW), and groundwater in the UK
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