Action and effects of medicines, endocrine disruptors and major metabolites in coastal Mediterranean waters

Projet en cours

Project affiliated to:
Project leader Hydroscience Montpellier (CNRS/IRD/UM1/UM2)
Research partners IFREMER, ISM2, CHU Montpellier
Budget 1 527 K€
Cofinanceur publics ANR
Year of labeling 2009
Year of co-financing 2009

The Mediterranean coast is increasingly urbanized and suffers from pollution generated by urban activities which discharge treated wastewater into the sea via streams, rivers and sea outfall pipelines.

Effluent from treatment plants no longer just contain previously studied pollutants, such as hydrocarbons, but also new and emerging contaminants.

These compounds defined by Daughton and Ternes (1999) correspond to a wide range of molecules such as drugs and care products.

Drugs have become of particular interest over the past few years as they are frequently found in the marine environment. (Heberer, 2002).

Moreover these molecules are usually designed to act on the biological system at a low dose.

The care products correspond to a wide range of chemical products including perfumes and UV filters.

These molecules which come into the marine environment through recreational activities and wastewater have in some cases shown potential endocrine disruption. (Fent et al., 2008).

Today little information is available about the way the human metabolism breaks down the potential eco-toxicological effects of drugs beyond the general hypothesis that the more hydrophilic the compounds the less dangerous they are for aquatic organisms.

Metabolites have physicochemical properties and probably behave differently within the environment.

This study focuses on pharmaceutical products and some of their specific metabolites as well as UV filters concentrating on the transformation process in the marine environment.