Dynamics of urban and agricultural organic micropollutants and their influence

2019-04-09 10:21:05 From: SERI Hits:

Presenter: Prof. Beate Escher

Venue: Meeting Room on floor 6, SERI, SCNU University Town Campus

Time: 10:00, April 10 Wednesday, 2019

TitleDynamics of urban and agricultural organic micropollutants and their influence on the water quality of a small creek


Rivers integrate water of their entire catchment and pose an important environmental compartment in which transport and transformation processes of anthropogenic chemicals occur. To trace changes in the water quality and to characterize potential input sources of organic micropollutants an integrated analytical and bioanalytical approach was applied. A small creek, the Ammer river, Tübingen (Germany), was sampled in its entirety using grab sampling and in a more detailed follow up study at two sampling sites with large volume-solid phase extraction (LV-SPE) devices. Both LV-SPE devices integrated a total period of 24 hours divided in four sampling intervals. The water extracts were measured by four in-vitro bioassays covering the environmentally relevant mode of actions of activation of the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR), estrogenicity (ER), oxidative stress response (AREc32) and mitochondrial toxicity measured by the cellular oxygen consumption rate (OCR) assay using the Agilent Seahorse XFe96 Analyzer. Furthermore, all samples were screened for close to one hundred target analytes by LC-MS/MS. The water extracts showed temporal and spatial variability in the assays AhR and AREc32 with most samples being active. The OCR assay showed initial uncoupling activity at the upstream sampling site, just below a wastewater treatment plant, which transitioned to marginal uncoupling at the same sampling site at later sampling periods and strong electron transport chain inhibition at the downstream site. The uncoupling effect coincided with estrogenic activity, which is a marker of the water being dominated by wastewater treatment plant effluent. In all other samples and the tributaries the mitochondrial toxicity was dominated by the inhibition of the electron transport chain. This study shows the dynamics of organic micropollutants in one stretch of a small creek and demonstrates that the impact of anthropogenic chemicals on the water quality maybe highly variable. This work was supported by the Collaborative Research Centre 1253 CAMPOS (Project P1: Rivers), funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG, Grant Agreement SFB 1253/1 20147).


About the Speeker:Prof. Beate Escher

Beate Escher (PhD 1995 and Habilitation 2002, ETH Zürich, Switzerland) is Head of Department of Cell Toxicology at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research in Leipzig, Germany and Professor at the Eberhard Karls University Tübingen, Germany. She is also lecturer at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in ETHZ, Switzerland, holds an honorary professorship at the University of Queensland and an adjunct professorship at Griffith University, Australia. She is an Associate Editor with Environmental Science and Technology. From 2011 to 2014 she held an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship. In 2013 she won the Australian Water Association AWA National Research Innovation Award for her work on cell-based bioassays in water quality assessment. Beate Escher has been working on developing scientifically sound assessment tools and methodologies for risk assessment of micropollutants in the environment and in people. Escher’s expertise includes mode-of-action based effect assessment, and methods for hazard screening of organic micropollutants including pharmaceuticals, pesticides and persistent organic pollutants, environmental transformation products, and mixtures. She is interested in improving dosing and interpretation of high-throughput in vitro bioassays and runs the robotic bioassay platform CITEPro at UFZ (www.ufz.de/citepro). More practically oriented aspects include passive sampling of sediment and biota and effect-based methods for water quality assessment, covering a wide range of different water types from wastewater to drinking water and treatment processes including biological treatment, filtration and advanced oxidation processes.



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