Triclosan and methyl-triclosan in fish and suspended particulate matter

Created at January 27, 2013

A retrospective monitoring study of the German Environmental Specimen Bank has been  published and the data can now be searched.

Triclosan is an antimicrobial agent which is used for instance as disinfectant and preservative in personal care products and for the impregnation of textiles to reduce microbial growth. Its transformation product methyl-triclosan is accumulated by aquatic organisms.

To clarify whether these compounds are also detectable in fish from German rivers retrospective studies were initiated using bream samples from 16 sampling sites at six rivers. The first study covers the years 1994 to 2003, while the second expands the study period to 2008 and also includes the analysis of  suspended particulate matter (SPM) sampled at four sites between 2005 and 2007.

The study revealed very low triclosan levels in fish and concentrations below the quantification limit in SPM. Concentrations of methyl-triclosan, however, were considerably higher. The highest levels were detected in bream from the rivers Saale and Saar. Methyl-triclosan increased downstream in fish from the Rhine while the opposite was observed in the Elbe where lowest levels were found in bream from the most downstream site Blankenese.  In SPM, methyl-triclosan ranged between 1 and 4 ng g-1 dry weight with highest levels found in 2005.

The data for methyl-triclosan in bream can now be searched.

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