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See detailDiscovering pesticides and their TPs in Luxembourg waters using open cheminformatics approaches
Krier, Jessy; Singh, Randolph R.; Kondic, Todor UL et al

in Environment International (2022), 158

The diversity of hundreds of thousands of potential organic pollutants and the lack of (publicly available) information about many of them is a huge challenge for environmental sciences, engineering, and ... [more ▼]

The diversity of hundreds of thousands of potential organic pollutants and the lack of (publicly available) information about many of them is a huge challenge for environmental sciences, engineering, and regulation. Suspect screening based on high-resolution liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS) has enormous potential to help characterize the presence of these chemicals in our environment, enabling the detection of known and newly emerging pollutants, as well as their potential transformation products (TPs). Here, suspect list creation (focusing on pesticides relevant for Luxembourg, incorporating data sources in 4 languages) was coupled to an automated retrieval of related TPs from PubChem based on high confidence suspect hits, to screen for pesticides and their TPs in Luxembourgish river samples. A computational workflow was established to combine LC-HRMS analysis and pre-screening of the suspects (including automated quality control steps), with spectral annotation to determine which pesticides and, in a second step, their related TPs may be present in the samples. The data analysis with Shinyscreen (https://gitlab.lcsb.uni.lu/eci/shinyscreen/), an open source software developed in house, coupled with custom-made scripts, revealed the presence of 162 potential pesticide masses and 96 potential TP masses in the samples. Further identification of these mass matches was performed using the open source approach MetFrag (https://msbi.ipb-halle.de/MetFrag/). Eventual target analysis of 36 suspects resulted in 31 pesticides and TPs confirmed at Level-1 (highest confidence), and five pesticides and TPs not confirmed due to different retention times. Spatio-temporal analysis of the results showed that TPs and pesticides followed similar trends, with a maximum number of potential detections in July. The highest detections were in the rivers Alzette and Mess and the lowest in the Sûre and Eisch. This study (a) added pesticides, classification information and related TPs into the open domain, (b) developed automated open source retrieval methods - both enhancing FAIRness (Findability, Accessibility, Interoperability and Reusability) of the data and methods; and (c) will directly support “L’Administration de la Gestion de l’Eau” on further monitoring steps in Luxembourg. [less ▲]

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See detailAn annotation database for chemicals of emerging concern in exposome research
Meijer, Jeroen; Lamoree, Marja; Hamers, Timo et al

in Environment International (2021), 152

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See detailTowards a harmonized method for the global reconnaissance of multi-class antimicrobials and other pharmaceuticals in wastewater and receiving surface waters
Singh, Randolph UL; Angeles, Luisa; Butryn, Deena et al

in Environment International (2019), 124

Antimicrobial resistance is a worldwide problem that is both pressing and challenging due to the rate at which it is spreading, and the lack of understanding of the mechanisms that link human, animal and ... [more ▼]

Antimicrobial resistance is a worldwide problem that is both pressing and challenging due to the rate at which it is spreading, and the lack of understanding of the mechanisms that link human, animal and environmental sources contributing to its proliferation. One knowledge gap that requires immediate attention is the significance of antimicrobial residues and other pharmaceuticals that are being discharged from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) on the dissemination of antimicrobial resistance in the environment. In this work we provide an approach to develop a harmonized analytical method for 8 classes of antimicrobials and other pharmaceuticals that can be used for global monitoring in wastewater and receiving waters. Analysis of these trace organic chemicals in the influent and effluent wastewater, and in the respective upstream and downstream receiving waters from different countries across the globe is not trivial. Here, we demonstrated that sample preparation using solid-phase extraction (SPE) not only provides a convenient and cost-effective shipping of samples, but also adds stability to the analytes during international shipping. It is important that SPE cartridges are maintained at cold temperature during shipment if the duration is longer than 7 days because a significant decrease in recoveries were observed after 7 days in the cartridges stored at room temperature, especially for sulfonamides and tetracyclines. To compensate for sample degradation during shipment, and matrix effects in liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry, the use of stable isotope labeled compounds should be employed when available and affordable. The importance of applying a defined tolerance for the ion ratios (Q/q) that have been optimized for wastewater and surface water is discussed. The tolerance range was set to be the mean Q/q of the analyte standard at various concentrations ±40% for the influent, and ±30% for the effluent, upstream, and downstream samples; for tetracyclines and quinolones, however, the tolerance range was ±80% in order to minimize false negative and false positive detection. The optimized procedures were employed to reveal differences in antimicrobial and pharmaceutical concentrations in influent, effluent, and surface water samples from Hong Kong, India, Philippines, Sweden, Switzerland, and United States. The antimicrobials with the highest concentrations in influent and effluent samples were ciprofloxacin (48,103 ng/L, Hong Kong WWTP 1) and clarithromycin (5178 ng/L, India WWTP 2), respectively. On the other hand, diclofenac (108,000 ng/L, Sweden WWTP 2), caffeine (67,000 ng/L, India WWTP 1), and acetaminophen (28,000 ng/L, India WWTP 1) were the highest detected pharmaceuticals in the receiving surface water samples. Hong Kong showed the highest total antimicrobial concentrations that included macrolides, quinolones, and sulfonamides with concentrations reaching 60,000 ng/L levels in the influent. Antidepressants were predominant in Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States. [less ▲]

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