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Ecotoxicological Effects of Pharmaceuticals in the Environment pp. 227-246 $100.00
Authors:  (Maria-Jose Ruiz, Guillermina Font, Laboratory of Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Valencia, Burjassot, Valencia, Spain)
Abstract:
Pharmaceuticals are designed to stimulate a response in humans and animals at low doses, with a very specific target. Tons of them are produced annually worldwide to be consumed by humans and animals. Pharmaceuticals and their metabolites have been recently recognized as environmental emerging organic contaminants. Patients, in case of drugs for human use, or animals for veterinary drugs, are the main sources of contamination. In the environment, pharmaceuticals can be ranked according to environmental loads. Priority pharmaceuticals of concert for the environment can be measured in waste and surface water. However, their resistance to inactivation before exerting their therapeutic effect is paradoxically responsible of bioaccumulation and toxic effects in aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Pollution of the aquatic environment by waste pharmaceuticals is an increasing area of concern but little is known about their ecotoxicological effects on the wildlife. In the aquatic environment can be determined non-steroidal anti-inflammatory, analgesics, steroids and regulated hormones, blood-lipid regulators, antibiotics, antidepressants, antineoplasics, drugs of abuse and their metabolites. So, the implications of all of them on environment stability need to be assessed. Assessment of their concentration in different environmental compartments is essential to evaluate their potential ecotoxicological effects. In vitro and in vivo assays suggest that pharmaceutical principles, taken singularly or in combinations, and concentrations close to those detected in the environment, may have ecotoxicological effects. Further knowledge of the causes, occurrence and effects of drugs as environmental pollutants is necessary for a better understanding of this ecological issue, as well as to improve abatement strategies, and to mitigate subtle environmental consequences. 


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Ecotoxicological Effects of Pharmaceuticals in the Environment pp. 227-246