Sunday 21 April 2019
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business-standard - 1 month ago

Medicine, personal care products may lead to new pollutants in waterways

Bacteria in sewage treatment plants may be creating new contaminants that have not been evaluated for potential risks and may affect aquatic environments, say scientists in a study published in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry Journal.When you flush the toilet, you probably don t think about the traces of the medicine and personal care products in your body that are winding up in sewage treatment plants, streams, rivers, lakes, bays, and the ocean.The scientists tested the ability of bacteria in sludge from a sewage treatment plant to break down two widely used pharmaceutical products--naproxen, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, and guaifenesin, an expectorant in many cough and cold medications.Also, they tested two common compounds in personal care products: oxybenzone, a key ingredient in many sunscreens, and methylparaben, a preservative in many cosmetics.Bacteria that don t require oxygen to grow in the sludge broke down methylparaben, but the microbes only partially ..


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