Ecological risk assessment of urban creek sediments contaminated by untreated domestic wastewater: Potential contribution of antimicrobials and a musk fragrance

Ikumi Tamura, Kumiko Kimura, Yutaka Kameda, Norihide Nakada, Hiroshi Yamamoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)


Despite the fact that some hydrophobic pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) have been found to accumulate in river sediments, little is known about the contribution of these compounds to the toxicity of the whole sediment. We sampled river sediments from two urban creeks with an unsewered drainage area to investigate the toxicity for a benthic organism, Chironomus yoshimatsui. The concentrations of selected hydrophobic PPCPs, triclosan (TCS), triclocarban (TCC) and galaxolide (HHCB) were analysed using gas chromatographic mass spectroscopy or liquid chromatographic mass spectroscopy and were found to lie within the range 50 to 200 ng g-1. The toxicity of the three individual contaminants for the chironomid was also determined. The toxicity of TCC was found to be the strongest, with an NOEC value of 2.5 μg g -1. Combining the toxicity and measured environmental concentration, the ecological risk was assessed and the contribution of these contaminants to the whole sediment toxicity estimated, assuming additivity. The hazard quotient of all three compounds, determined without assessment factor, ranged between 0.01 and 0.1. The combined contribution of the three compounds to total sediment toxicity was as high as 8.2%, but other unknown factors may also make an important contribution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1567-1575
Number of pages9
JournalEnvironmental Technology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2013
Externally publishedYes



  • Chironomus yoshimatsui
  • PPCPs
  • sediment toxicity
  • triclocarban
  • triclosan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Water Science and Technology

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