Bioaccumulation and analytics of pharmaceutical residues in the environment: A review

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The presence of pharmaceutical residues in various environmental compartments is an issue of increasing concern. The widespread occurrence of these compounds in water and soil samples has been demonstrated in a number of analytical studies. However, the data about their concentrations in biota samples is scarce. Moreover, the trophic transfer of pharmaceuticals remains largely unexplored, despite increasing evidence of the potential bioaccumulation of those compounds. Therefore, the main aim of this review is to present an overview of the current state of data about the bioaccumulation and analytical methodologies used for the determination of pharmaceutical residues in biota samples. This work focuses on the most commonly found pharmaceuticals in the environment: antibiotics, analgesic and anti-inflammatory drugs, steroid hormones, antihypertensives and antidepressants. We do hope that the collected data will allow a better understanding of pharmaceutical pollution and the exposure of non-target organisms. However, although impressive progress has undoubtedly been made, in order to fully understand the behavior of these chemicals in the environment, there are still numerous gaps to be filled in our overall knowledge in this field.

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