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Pharmaceuticals and personal care products

SAN FRANCISCO, MARCH 27 -- Human and veterinary pharmaceuticals and personal care products -- cosmetics, food supplements, sunscreens, fragrances and the like -- may be released into sewage, rivers and groundwater after being ingested or applied. A daylong symposium at the 219th national meeting of the American Chemical Society, the world's largest scientific society, explores the implications for public health and the environment. Selected studies are described below.

  • First broad overview of the subject at a major U.S. scientific meeting: So says Christian Daughton, Ph.D., of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Las Vegas, Nev., chair of the symposium. Research in Europe on the environmental fate of pharmaceuticals and personal care products outpaces the work in this country, Daughton says. Still, he adds, there are "huge gaps in the knowledge base." Daughton will highlight the overarching issues during his presentation, which kicks off the session. (C. G. Daughton, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Las Vegas, Nev.; ENVR 29; Monday, March 27, 8:40 a.m.; Hilton Imperial A, Ballroom Level. See page 105 in the final program.)

  • Prescription drug residues in German waters: A sampling of 40 German rivers and streams turned up residues of 31 pharmaceuticals. Researcher Thomas Ternes believes they are not toxic to people, but could adversely affect fish and other marine life. Too little data are available to assess the risk to the aquatic ecosystem, he says. (T. Ternes, Institute for Water Research and Water Technology, Wiesbaden, Germany; ENVR 30; Monday, March 27, 9:00 a.m.; Hilton Imperial A, Ballroom Level. See page 105 in the final program.)

  • Traces of cholesterol-lowering drug in German sewage and water supplies: Clofibric acid, the active metabolite in some cholesterol-lowering drugs, has been found in sewage, surface water and, in a few cases, drinking water in Germany, s
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Contact: Charmayne Marsh
y_marsh@acs.org
202-872-4445
American Chemical Society
26-Mar-2000


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