Australian Centre for Water
and Environmental Biotechnology

AWMC Seminar Program:Implication of in-sewer stability testing of markers for wastewater-based epidemiology

Abstract: Wastewater-based epidemiology (WBE) relies upon accurate quantification of target chemical residues within wastewater with the goal of back-estimating per capita chemical consumption and/or exposure. The levels of these residues measured is however also dependent upon both transformation processes within the sewer and within collected samples.

Whilst stability of chemicals within collected samples is relatively easy to measure and often conducted in WBE studies, assessing in-sewer stability of chemicals is more complicated and could not be substituted by in-sample stability experiments. In some cases, this can have rather large implications for the interpretation of WBE data. A very good example is creatinine, which is stable in-sample but degrades quickly in-sewer. Impact of in-sewer processes to the back-estimation results could be more important to low dose drugs such as fentanyl and oxycodone compared to high dose ones such as methamphetamine and cocaine. 

Bio: Dr Phong Thai is a Mid Career Researcher with a keen interest in environmental health and monitoring. He is working at Queensland Alliance for Environmental Health Sciences (QAEHS) as a Senior Research Fellow after his Fellowship at Queensland University of Technology. His key focus at QAEHS involves the expansion of wastewater based epidemiological approach to determine community consumption and exposure to a range of illicit and licit drugs, pharmaceuticals and personal care products. Besides, he is working on projects of monitoring emerging environmental pollutants in different matrices. Phong has been awarded several competitive fellowships for his research and involved in a number of projects totalling > A$ 2 millions in funding.

AWMC hosts a free seminar every Friday from 9am.

Event Details
Date & Time: 
Friday, 27 September 2019
9am - 10am
Venue: AIBN Building 75, Level 1 Seminar Room
  • Dr. Phong Thai (Senior Research Fellow, QAEHS)

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