Evaluation of the Toxicity of an Industrial Effluent Before and After a Treatment with Sn-Modified TiO2 Under UV Irradiation Through Oxidative Stress Biomarkers



At present, the generation of wastewater is a major environmental problem of the pharmaceutical industry due to the toxicity of some of the substances contained in them, which can be generated in various aquatic organisms. Due to this situation, appropriate treatments for wastewater treatment should be explored and implemented. Traditional treatments have proven to be deficient in the removal of emerging pollutants. Currently, advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) have shown to be a promising option for this purpose. Within these, heterogeneous photocatalysis is an important alternative, which uses TiO2 as catalyst and ultraviolet light for the formation of hydroxyl radicals, which are powerful and nonselective oxidants capable of decomposing and mineralizing most organic compounds. The objective of this study was to evaluate the toxicity of an industrial effluent (wastewater from a pharmaceutical industry dedicated to the manufacture of NSAIDs) before and after a treatment using Sn-modified TiO2 under UV irradiation. The physicochemical properties were evaluated. NSAID concentrations, acute toxicity, and biomarkers of oxidative stress were determined before and after the photocatalytic treatment. The toxicity tests were performed on the amphipod Hyalella azteca. The results showed a decrease in the values of the physicochemical parameters, as well as the concentrations of DCF, IBP, NPX, and PCT after the treatment. LC50 values after the photocatalytic treatment were reduced by 430%. Likewise, the cellular oxidation biomarkers and antioxidation decreased drastically after treatment. The findings obtained in this study allow us to conclude that the treatment used is effective both chemically and biologically. Also, this treatment is effective for the elimination of microcontaminants present in complex mixtures such as the effluents of industrial wastewater.


NSAIDs Amphipods Photocatalytic treatments TiO2 Toxicity 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratorio de Toxicología Ambiental, Facultad de QuímicaUniversidad Autónoma del Estado de MéxicoTolucaMexico
  2. 2.Centro Conjunto de Investigación en Química Sustentable UAEM-UNAMTolucaMexico

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