Fourteen beta-agonists were quantitatively analyzed in cattle, chicken and swine liver specimens purchased at 14 wet markets in Selangor State, Malaysia, by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The health risks of ractopamine and clenbuterol residues in the Malaysian population were assessed based on quantitative data and meat consumption statistics in Malaysia. Wastewater samples collected at swine farms (n = 2) and cattle/cow farms (n = 2) in the Kuala Langat district were analyzed for the presence for the 14 compounds. Wastewater in chicken farms was not collected because there was negligible discharge during the breeding period. The environmental impacts caused by beta-agonists discharged from livestock farms were spatially assessed in the Langat River basin using a geographic information system (GIS). As a result, 10 compounds were detected in the liver specimens. Ractopamine, which is a permitted compound for swine in Malaysia, was frequently detected in swine livers; also, 9 other compounds that are prohibited compounds could be illegally abused among livestock farms. The health risks of ractopamine and clenbuterol were assessed to be minimal as their hazard quotients were no more than 7.82 × 10(-4) and 2.71 × 10(-3), respectively. Five beta-agonists were detected in the wastewater samples, and ractopamine in the swine farm resulted in the highest contamination (30.1 μg/L). The environmental impacts of the beta-agonists in the Langat River basin were generally concluded to be minimal, but the ractopamine contamination released from swine farms was localized in coastal areas near the estuary of the Langat River basin because most swine farms were located in that region.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.