Illinois Sustainable Technology Center - University of Illinois

PPCPs in the Environment

The frequent occurrence of pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs) in the aquatic environment is an emerging environmental issue in the U.S. Two important sources of PPCP contaminants in the environment are municipal/industrial sewage treatment plants (STPs) and concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). Scientists at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) at the University of Illinois are conducting several studies associated with PPCPs: (1) developing analytical methods using LC/MS/MS; (2) investigating environmental fate and transport; (3) identifying contamination sources, and (4) remediating or mitigating environmental contamination from PPCPs.

Currently, we are receiving a competitive research grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture to study the fate and transport of steroid hormones and veterinary antibiotics derived from dairy and beef farms. The goal of this project aims to identify and quantify the fate and transport of several commonly-occurring steroid hormones, veterinary antibiotics, and their metabolites in the environment, minimize their contamination in water supply, and enhance protection of the natural resources and environment. This research will involve a combination of laboratory, field, and numerical modeling experiments using representative steroid hormones and veterinary antibiotics as well as dairy and beef wastes.

PPCPs in the environment process

U of I News Bureau story on this research work can be found at http://news.illinois.edu/news/12/0605estrogen_WeiZheng.html

Noticias de la Ciencia y la Tecnologia (NCYT) news article about Wei Zheng's paper on aeration lagoon systems in rural United States (publication language: Spanish).

For more information on ISTC's PPCP research, please contact Wei Zheng.

Information about Triclosan Shown to Trigger Resistance in Aquatic Ecosystems


ISTC Report and Bibliography

ISTC has a report titled PPCPs in the Illinois Environment: Current Information and Research Recommendations available for viewing.

ISTC's librarian has created a bibliography of publications related to the characterization, analysis, fate, toxicology, and treatment of pharmaceuticals and personal care products in the environment.


PPCP Symposium

ISTC hosted a symposium on pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) in the Illinois environment on April 25th, 2008. Below are the video archives of the presentations as well as links to download the slides in PDF or PowerPoint. All videos require Windows Media Player 9 or above.

Presentations are in order of appearance.

Illinois EPA Study of Pharmaceuticals in Drinking Water
  • Presented By: Tom Hornshaw and Marcia Willhite - Illinois Environmental Protection Agency
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
A Pilot Study of PPCPs in Central Illinois Surface Waters
  • Presented By: Mike Caughy - IL State Water Survey
Ecological Impacts of Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products in Illinois Rivers and Streams
  • Presented By: John Kelly - Dept. of Biology, Loyola University-Chicago
  • The slides are unavailable for this presentation.
Oxytetracycline at Environmental Interfaces Studied by Second Harmonic Generation
  • Presented By: Patrick Hayes - Dept. of Chemistry, Northwestern University
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Determination of Pharmaceuticals in the Surface waters of the Upper Mississippi and Lower Illinois Rivers
  • Presented By: Kevin Johnson - Dept. of Chemistry and Environmental Sciences, SIU-Edwardsville
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Evaluation of Analytical Methods for Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products
  • Presented By: Teresa Chow - Analytical Services, WMRC
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Effects of PPCPs on Wildlife: What Do We Really Know?
  • Presented By: Jeff Levengood - IL Natural History Survey and Dept. of Veterinary Biosciences, UIUC
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products (PPCPs), Hormones, and Alkylphenol Ethoxylates (APEs) in the North Channel of the Chicago River
  • Only the last half of this presentation is available due to technical problems.
  • Presented By: Elizabeth Murphy - U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Office
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Disposal of Unwanted Medicines
  • Presented By: Susan Boehme - IL-IN Sea Grant/U.S. EPA GLNPO
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Presentation by David Lordi from Metropolitan Waste Reclamation District of Greater Chicago
  • Presented By: David Lordi - Metropolitan Waste Reclamation District of Greater Chicago
  • There were no slides with this presentation.
Developing Targeted Treatment Strategies for Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products and Wastewater-Derived Micropollutants
  • Presented By: Timm Strathmann - Center of Advanced Materials for the Purification of Water with Systems, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, UIUC
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF or PowerPoint.
Modern Landfill Technology and Conditions: Implications for PPCP Management
  • Presented By: Terry Johnson - Groundwater Protection Program, Waste Management
  • Download the slides for this presentation in PDF.
Illinois American Water Perspectives on Pharmaceuticals in Drinking Water
  • Presented By: Esther Dundore - Environmental Management and Compliance, Illinois American Water
  • There were no slides with this presentation.

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