Fate of the Antibiotic Sulfamethoxazole and Its Two Major Human Metabolites in a Water Sediment Test
2009 (English)In: Environmental Science and Technology, ISSN 0013-936X, E-ISSN 1520-5851, Vol. 43, no 9, 3135-3141 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Sulfonamide antibiotics are widely used in human and veterinary medicine. After their application, they are excreted in unchanged as well as in metabolized form. Due to incomplete elimination in wastewater treatment plants, they can be emitted into surface water. The environmental fate of both parent compounds and metabolites is currently unknown. The aim of this study was to determine the biodegradation potential of river sediment for the sulfonamide sulfamethoxazole (SMX) and its two major human metabolites N-4-acetyl-SMX and SMX-Ni-glucuronide using a water sediment test system. Each compound was tested in a separate series together with sterile and "water only" controls. All three compounds were efficiently removed from the test system by biodegradation in the sediment. Only for SMX-Ni-glucuronide, a substantial removal in the absence of sediment was determined. Dissipation times from the aqueous phase (DT50) between 8.5 and 17.2 days were measured. Sorption to sediment was of minor importance due to the slightly basic pH of the test system. By the application of a mathematical model, biodegradation half-lives in sediment between 3.3 and 25.6 h were calculated for SMX and its metabolites. The results of this study highlight the capability of native river sediment for degrading sulfonamide antibiotics, but also the potential of human metabolites to retransform into parent SMX under environmental conditions. Based on this study, it is unlikely that SMX or its metabolites will persist or accumulate in river sediments under PH conditions where sorption is of minor importance.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 43, no 9, 3135-3141 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-36956DOI: 10.1021/es900300uOAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-36956DiVA: diva2:291426