Author(s): Karolak S, Nefau T, Bailly E, Solgadi A, Levi Y
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Abstract Illicit drugs consumption is actually an important public health concern that needs to be well defined to be managed. A new method, expressed as sewage epidemiology has been proposed by Daughton and developed by Zuccato. This method involves estimating the consumption from the measurement of drug residues in sewage. Several studies have been carried out, leading to an assessment of drugs consumption in some European countries. This work, carried out in Paris area (France) brings new data to this assessment and allows a comparison of cocaine and MDMA consumptions with European estimations. Four wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) have been retained for the study, taking into account biological treatment, volume capacity, geographic location and social environment. Cocaine and its major metabolite benzoylecgonine (BZE), amphetamine, 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) and buprenorphine were measured in raw water and WWTP effluent using HPLC-MS/MS after SPE extraction. Amphetamine was rarely detected. Cocaine and BZE were quantified at levels from 5 to 282 ng L(-1) and 15 to 849 ng L(-1), respectively. MDMA and buprenorphine concentrations remained under 20 ng L(-1). Cocaine consumption was estimated from cocaine or BZE concentrations measured in raw water and the results showed significant difference in drug taking during week or weekend. The estimated doses observed in this study are lower than those reported for others countries, especially Spain and Italy. MDMA consumption was estimated at lower levels than cocaine. (c) 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Forensic Sci Int
and referenced in Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology