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Detection of Illicit Drugs in Municipal Wastewater Streams Using Integrative Samplers and LC Mass Spectrometry

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Abstract:A technique has been developed which has the potential to map regions of concern for increased drug usage and/or production by monitoring the input of chemical into the waterways. This approach can provide near "real-time" data on illegal activities. Determination of illicit drugs and abused controlled substances in sewage effluent can provide a community-scale assessment of drug use. Bodies of water not linked with wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) (i.e, streams, drainage basins, etc.) often are used to dispose of materials from illegal drug labs, can also be monitored by this technique. The background behind measuring illicit drugs in sewage as an objective measure of community-wide usage is provided here: http://www.e~a.Q:ov/nerlesdl/chemistrv/pharma/ book-conclude.htm/ .The Polar Organic Chemical Integrative Sampler (POCIS) was combined with liquid chromatography-electrospray/ion trap mass spectrometry (LC- ES/ITMS) in efforts to monitor effluents from three WWTPs for the illicit pharmaceuticals methamphetamine and methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). Methamphetamine was detected in the effluents from a Nevada WWTP during winter and summer samplings at 0.5 and 2.5 ng/L, respectively. At a South Carolina WWTP , MDMA was detected at 0.5 ng/L. Based on the average daily flow of effluent, an average of 0.12 and 0.02 kg/year of methamphetamine and MDMA, respectively, would be discharged from these WWTPs. The identification of the drugs was confirmed by collision induced dissociation experiments in the LC-ES/ITMS. The POCIS passively samples trace quantities of hydrophilic organic chemicals in an integrative manner, resulting in an enriched extract, providing a time-weighted average concentration of the analytes over the deployment period.
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Citation:Alvarez, D. A., T. Joneslepp, J. D. Petty, and J. N. Huckins. Detection of Illicit Drugs in Municipal Wastewater Streams Using Integrative Samplers and LC Mass Spectrometry. Presented at Pittsburg Conference, Chicago, IL, March 7-12, 2004.
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Contact: Chris Siebert - (702) 798-2234 or siebert.christopher@epa.gov
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Division: Environmental Sciences Division
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Branch: Environmental Chemistry Branch
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Product Type: Abstrct/Oral
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Presented: 03/07/2004
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Related Entries:
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Bullet Item Addressing Emerging Issues in Water Quality Through Environmental Chemistry
spacer Relationship Reason:   A Project of the Product
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Last Updated on Monday, October 22, 2007
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