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Keywords:

  • Acetyl-sulfamethoxazole;
  • Bovine Manure;
  • Degradation;
  • Sewage Sludge;
  • Soil;
  • Sorption;
  • Sulfamethoxazole

Abstract

The fate of 14C-labeled sulfamethoxazole and acetyl-sulfamethoxazole in soil has been investigated with special respect to possible entry routes of human and veterinary pharmaceuticals into soil environments. Therefore, the stability of the test substances was monitored first in sewage sludge and bovine manure. Within the incubation period of 72 d, 1% at maximum of the initially applied radiotracers was released as 14C-carbon dioxide while ⪈75% was transferred to non-extractable residues that were operationally defined by the ethyl acetate extraction. Test-sludge and test-manure samples with defined aged residues were prepared and, supplementary to standard solutions, applied to silty-clay soil samples. After standard and test-sludge application, soil/water distribution coefficients of Kd < 5 L kg–1 were determined revealing both test substances as potential leachers. In contrast, the sorption of sulfamethoxazole increased after test-manure application (Kd > 10 L kg–1). In the long-term degradability tests, the metabolic fate of both test substances was characterized by the continuous decrease of extractable residues, resulting in disappearance times of DT90 ⪇ 33 d, and the increase of non-extractable residues. Mineralization reached 11% at maximum. Thereby, the dynamics of these processes differed whether the test substances were applied via standard, test-sludge or test-manure application. This fact emphasized the relevance of entry route specific matrix effects on the fate of both test substances in soil.