Biodegradation of pharmaceuticals and endocrine disrupting compounds was examined in long term batch experiments for a period of two and a half years to obtain more insight into the effects of redox conditions. A mix including lipid lowering agents (e.g. clofibric acid, gemfibrozil), analgesics (e.g. diclofenac, naproxen), beta blockers (e.g. atenolol, propranolol), X-ray contrast media (e.g. diatrizoic acid, iomeprol) as well as the antiepileptic carbamazepine and endocrine disruptors (e.g. bisphenol A, 17α-ethinylestradiol) was analyzed in batch tests in the presence of oxygen, nitrate, manganese (IV), iron (III), and sulfate. Out of the 23 selected substances, 14 showed a degradation of >50% of their initial concentrations under aerobic conditions. The beta blockers propranolol and atenolol and the analgesics pentoxifylline and naproxen showed a removal of >50% under anaerobic conditions. In particular naproxen proved to be degradable with oxygen and under most anaerobic conditions, i.e. with manganese (IV), iron (III), or sulfate. The natural estrogens estriol, estrone and 17β-estradiol showed complete biodegradation under aerobic and nitrate-reducing conditions, with a temporary increase of estrone during transformation of estriol and 17β-estradiol. Transformation of 17β-estradiol under Fe(III)-reducing conditions resulted in an increase of estriol as well. Concentrations of clofibric acid, carbamazepine, iopamidol and diatrizoic acid, known for their recalcitrance in the environment, remained unchanged.
Journal of Contaminant Hydrology – Elsevier
Published: Aug 1, 2017
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