Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 129 in total

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  1. Tay KS, Madehi N
    Sci. Total Environ., 2015 Jul 1;520:23-31.
    PMID: 25791053 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.03.033
    Application of ozonation in water treatment involves complex oxidation pathways that could lead to the formation of various by-products, some of which may be harmful to living organisms. In this work, ozonation by-products of ofloxacin (OFX), a frequently detected pharmaceutical pollutant in the environment, were identified and their ecotoxicity was estimated using the Ecological Structure Activity Relationships (ECOSAR) computer program. In order to examine the role of ozone (O3) and hydroxyl radicals (∙OH) in the degradation of ofloxacin, ozonation was performed at pH2, 7 and 12. In this study, 12 new structures have been proposed for the ozonation by-products detected during the ozonation of ofloxacin. According to the identified ozonation by-products, O3 and ∙OH were found to react with ofloxacin during ozonation. The reaction between ofloxacin and O3 proceeded via hydroxylation and breakdown of heterocyclic ring with unsaturated double-bond. The reaction between ofloxacin and ·OH generated various by-products derived from the breakdown of heterocyclic ring. Ecotoxicity assessment indicated that ozonation of OFX could yield by-products of greater toxicity compared with parent compounds.
  2. Manap N, Voulvoulis N
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 Oct 15;496:607-623.
    PMID: 25108801 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.07.009
    The aim of this study was to develop a risk-based decision-making framework for the selection of sediment dredging option. Descriptions using case studies of the newly integrated, holistic and staged framework were followed. The first stage utilized the historical dredging monitoring data and the contamination level in media data into Ecological Risk Assessment phases, which have been altered for benefits in cost, time and simplicity. How Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) can be used to analyze and prioritize dredging areas based on environmental, socio-economic and managerial criteria was described for the next stage. The results from MCDA will be integrated into Ecological Risk Assessment to characterize the degree of contamination in the prioritized areas. The last stage was later described using these findings and analyzed using MCDA, in order to identify the best sediment dredging option, accounting for the economic, environmental and technical aspects of dredging, which is beneficial for dredging and sediment management industries.
  3. Watanabe A, Tsutsuki K, Inoue Y, Maie N, Melling L, Jaffé R
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 Sep 15;493:220-8.
    PMID: 24946034 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.05.095
    As basic information for assessing reactivity and functionality of wetland-associated dissolved organic matter (DOM) based on their composition and structural properties, chemical characteristics of N in ultrafiltered DOM (UDON; >1 kD) isolated from wetland-associated rivers in three climates (cool-temperate, Hokkaido, Japan; sub-tropical, Florida, USA; tropical, Sarawak, Malaysia) were investigated. The UDON was isolated during dry and wet seasons, or during spring, summer, and autumn. The proportion of UDON present as humic substances, which was estimated as the DAX-8 adsorbed fraction, ranged from 47 to 91%, with larger values in the Sarawak than at the other sites. The yield of hydrolyzable amino acid N ranged 1.24 to 7.01 mg g(-1), which correlated positively to the total N content of UDOM and tended to be larger in the order of Florida>Hokkaido>Sarawak samples. X-ray photoelectron N1s spectra of UDON showed a strong negative correlation between the relative abundances of amide/peptide N and primary amine N. The relative abundances of amide/peptide N and primary amine N in the Sarawak samples were smaller (70-76%) and larger (20-23%) respectively compared to those (80-88% and 4-9%) in the Florida and Hokkaido samples. Assuming terminal amino groups and amide N of peptides as major constituents of primary amine N and amide/peptide N, respectively, the average molecular weight of peptides was smaller in the Sarawak samples than that in the Florida and Hokkaido samples. Seasonal variations in UDON composition were scarce in the Sarawak and Florida samples, whereas the distribution of humic substance-N and nonhumic substance-N and compositions of amino acids and N functional groups showed a clear seasonality in the Hokkaido samples. While aromatic N increased from spring to autumn, contributions from fresh proteinaceous materials were also enhanced during autumn, resulting in the highest N content of UDOM for this season.
  4. Ho YB, Zakaria MP, Latif PA, Saari N
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 Aug 1;488-489:261-7.
    PMID: 24836135 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.04.109
    Repeated applications of animal manure as fertilizer are normal agricultural practices that may release veterinary antibiotics and hormones into the environment from treated animals. Broiler manure samples and their respective manure-amended agricultural soil samples were collected in selected locations in the states of Selangor, Negeri Sembilan and Melaka in Malaysia to identify and quantify veterinary antibiotic and hormone residues in the environment. The samples were analyzed using ultrasonic extraction followed by solid phase extraction (SPE) and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The broiler manure samples were found to be contaminated with at least six target analytes, namely, doxycycline, enrofloxacin, flumequine, norfloxacin, trimethoprim and tylosin. These analytes were detected in broiler manure samples with maximum concentrations reaching up to 78,516 μg kg(-1) dry weight (DW) (doxycycline). For manure-amended agricultural soil samples, doxycycline and enrofloxacin residues were detected in every soil sample. The maximum concentration of antibiotic detected in soil was 1331 μg kg(-1) DW (flumequine). The occurrence of antibiotics and hormones in animal manure at high concentration poses a risk of contaminating agricultural soil via fertilization with animal manure. Some physico-chemical parameters such as pH, total organic carbon (TOC) and metal content played a considerable role in the fate of the target veterinary antibiotics and progesterone in the environment. It was suggested that these parameters can affect the adsorption of pharmaceuticals to solid environmental matrices.
  5. Khoshnevisan B, Rajaeifar MA, Clark S, Shamahirband S, Anuar NB, Mohd Shuib NL, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 May 15;481:242-51.
    PMID: 24602908 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.02.052
    In this study the environmental impact of consolidated rice farms (CF) - farms which have been integrated to increase the mechanization index - and traditional farms (TF) - small farms with lower mechanization index - in Guilan Province, Iran, were evaluated and compared using Life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology and adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system (ANFIS). Foreground data were collected from farmers using face-to-face questionnaires and background information about production process and inventory data was taken from the EcoInvent®2.0 database. The system boundary was confined to within the farm gate (cradle to farm gate) and two functional units (land and mass based) were chosen. The study also included a comparison of the input-output energy flows of the farms. The results revealed that the average amount of energy consumed by the CFs was 57 GJ compared to 74.2 GJ for the TFs. The energy ratios for CFs and TFs were 1.6 and 0.9, respectively. The LCA results indicated that CFs produced fewer environmental burdens per ton of produced rice. When compared according to the land-based FU the same results were obtained. This indicates that the differences between the two types of farms were not caused by a difference in their production level, but rather by improved management on the CFs. The analysis also showed that electricity accounted for the greatest share of the impact for both types of farms, followed by P-based and N-based chemical fertilizers. These findings suggest that the CFs had superior overall environmental performance compared to the TFs in the study area. The performance metrics of the model based on ANFIS show that it can be used to predict the environmental burdens of rice production with high accuracy and minimal error.
  6. Latif MT, Dominick D, Ahamad F, Khan MF, Juneng L, Hamzah FM, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 Jun 1;482-483:336-48.
    PMID: 24662202 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.02.132
    Rural background stations provide insight into seasonal variations in pollutant concentrations and allow for comparisons to be made with stations closer to anthropogenic emissions. In Malaysia, the designated background station is located in Jerantut, Pahang. A fifteen-year data set focusing on ten major air pollutants and four meteorological variables from this station were analysed. Diurnal, monthly and yearly pollutant concentrations were derived from hourly continuous monitoring data. Statistical methods employed included principal component regression (PCR) and sensitivity analysis. Although only one of the yearly concentrations of the pollutants studied exceeded national and World Health Organisation (WHO) guideline standards, namely PM10, seven of the pollutants (NO, NO2, NOx, O3, PM10, THC and CH4) showed a positive upward trend over the 15-year period. High concentrations of PM10 were recorded during severe haze episodes in this region. Whilst, monthly concentrations of most air pollutants, such as: PM10, O3, NOx, NO2, CO and NmHC were recorded at higher concentrations between June and September, during the southwest monsoon. Such results correspond with the mid-range transport of pollutants from more urbanised and industrial areas. Diurnal patterns, rationed between major air pollutants and sensitivity analysis, indicate the influence of local traffic emissions on air quality at the Jerantut background station. Although the pollutant concentrations have not shown a rapid increase, an alternative background station will need to be assigned within the next decade if development projects in the surrounding area are not halted.
  7. Chen GX, He WW, Wang Y, Zou YD, Liang JB, Liao XD, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 May 1;479-480:241-6.
    PMID: 24561929 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2014.01.124
    The degradation behavior of veterinary antibiotics in soil is commonly studied using the following methods of adding antibiotics to the soil: (i) adding manure collected from animals fed with a diet containing antibiotics, (ii) adding antibiotic-free animal manure spiked with antibiotics and (iii) directly adding antibiotics. No research simultaneously comparing different antibiotic addition methods was found. Oxytetracycline (OTC) was used as a model antibiotic to compare the effect of the three commonly used antibiotic addition methods on OTC degradation behavior in soil. The three treatment methods have similar trends, though OTC degradation half-lives show the following significant differences (P<0.05): manure from swine fed OTC (treatment A)
  8. Kwan CS, Takada H, Boonyatumanond R, Kato Y, Mizukawa K, Ito M, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 Feb 1;470-471:427-37.
    PMID: 24140702 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.09.076
    Historical trends of the accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in a typical tropical Asian environment were investigated using radio-dated sediment cores from Manila Bay, the Philippines and from the upper Gulf of Thailand. Vertical profiles indicated earlier usage of PCBs than of PBDEs which coincided with their industrial production. The increasing concentrations of total PBDEs and PCBs toward the surface suggested an increased consumption of PBDEs; and possible leakage of PCBs from old machineries into the aquatic environment in recent years. Current input of PCBs to the catchment of Manila Bay was supported by the analyses of air samples and plastic resin pellets. The vertical profiles of total PBDEs in the cores (i.e., rapidly increasing concentrations corresponding to the mid-1980s until mid-1990s, followed by a decrease until the early 2000s, and increasing again toward the surface) likely corresponded to the rapid economic growth in Asia in the 1990s, the Asian financial crisis in 1997, and the economic recovery since early 2000s. BDE-209 was predominant especially on the surface layers. BDEs 47 and 99 generally decreased toward the surface, reflecting the phase-out of the technical penta-PBDE products and the regulation by the Stockholm Convention in recent years. Increasing ratios of BDE-202/209, 206/209, 207/209 and decreasing % of BDE-209 down the core layers may provide evidence for the anaerobic debromination of BDE-209 in the sediment cores. Inventories in ng/cm(2) of total PCBs were higher than total PBDEs (92 vs. 34 and 47 vs. 11 in the Philippines; 47 vs. 33 in Thailand). However, the doubling times indicated faster accumulation of total PBDEs (6-7 years) and BDE-209 (6-7.5 years) than of PCBs (8-11 years). Furthermore, the temporal increase in BDE-209 was comparable to or faster than those reported in other water bodies around the world.
  9. Zabed H, Suely A, Faruq G, Sahu JN
    Sci. Total Environ., 2014 Feb 15;472:363-9.
    PMID: 24295752 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.11.051
    A sacred ritual well with continuously discharging of methane gas through its water body was studied for physicochemical and microbiological quality in three seasons and during ritual mass bathing. Most of the physicochemical parameters showed significant seasonal variations (P<0.05) and a sharp fluctuation during mass bathing. Dissolved oxygen (DO) was found negatively correlated with temperature (r=-0.384, P<0.05), biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) (r=-0.58, P<0.001) and ammonia (r=-0.738, P<0.001), while BOD showed positive correlation with chemical oxygen demand (COD) (r=0.762, P<0.001) and ammonia (r=0.83, P<0.001). Simple regression analysis also yielded significant linear relationship in DO vs. temperature (r(2)=0.147, P<0.05), DO vs. ammonia (r(2)=0.544, P<0.001) and BOD vs. DO (r(2)=0.336, P<0.001). A total of eight microbial indicators were studied and found that all of them increased unusually during mass bathing comparing with their respective seasonal values. Total coliforms (TC) were found positively correlated with fecal coliforms (FC) (r=0.971), FC with Escherichia coli (EC) (r=0.952), EC with intestinal enterococci (IE) (r=0.921), fecal streptococci (FS) with IE (r=0.953) and Staphylococcus aureus (SA) with Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PA) (r=0.946), which were significant at P<0.001. Some regression models showed significant linear relationship at P<0.001 with r(2) value of 0.943 for FC vs. TC, 0.907 for EC vs. FC, 0.869 for FS vs. FC, 0.848 for IE vs. EC and 0.909 for IE vs. FS. The overall results found in this study revealed that well water is suitable for bathing purpose but the religious activity considerably worsen its quality.
  10. Hashim JH, Radzi RS, Aljunid SM, Nur AM, Ismail A, Baguma D, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2013 Oct 1;463-464:1210-6.
    PMID: 23759330 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.04.084
    Natural, inorganic arsenic contamination of groundwater threatens the health of more than 100 million people worldwide, including residents of the densely populated river deltas of South and Southeast Asia. Contaminated groundwater from tube wells in Cambodia was discovered in 2001 leading to the detection of the first cases of arsenicosis in 2006. The most affected area was the Kandal Province. The main objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of arsenicosis in Cambodia based on acceptable criteria, and to investigate the use of hair arsenic as a biomarker not only for arsenicosis-related signs but also for associated symptoms. A cross-sectional epidemiological study of 616 respondents from 3 purposely selected provinces within the Mekong River basin of Cambodia was conducted. The Kandal Province was chosen as a high arsenic-contaminated area, while the Kratie Province and Kampong Cham Province were chosen as moderate and low arsenic-contaminated areas, respectively. The most prevalent sign of arsenicosis was hypomelanosis with a prevalence of 14.5% among all respondents and 32.4% among respondents with a hair arsenic level of ≥1 μg/g. This was followed by hyperkeratosis, hyperpigmentation and mee's lines. Results also suggest a 1.0 μg/g hair arsenic level to be a practical cut off point for an indication of an arsenic contaminated individual. This hair arsenic level, together with the presence of one or more of the classical signs of arsenicosis, seems to be a practical criteria for a confirmed diagnosis. Based on these criteria, the overall prevalence of arsenicosis for all provinces was found to be 16.1%, with Kandal Province recording the highest prevalence of 35.5%. This prevalence is comparatively high when compared to that of other affected countries. The association between arsenicosis and the use of Chinese traditional medicine also needs further investigation.
  11. Mirsadeghi SA, Zakaria MP, Yap CK, Gobas F
    Sci. Total Environ., 2013 Jun 1;454-455:584-97.
    PMID: 23583984 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.03.001
    The spatial distribution of 19 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (tPAHs) was quantified in aquacultures located in intertidal mudflats of the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia in order to investigate bioaccumulation of PAH in blood cockles, Anadara granosa (A. granosa). Fifty-four samples from environmental matrices and A. granosa were collected. The sampling locations were representative of a remote area as well as PAH-polluted areas. The relationship of increased background levels of PAH to anthropogenic PAH sources in the environment and their effects on bioaccumulation levels of A. granosa are investigated in this study. The levels of PAH in the most polluted station were found to be up to ten-fold higher than in remote areas in blood cockle. These high concentrations of PAHs reflected background contamination, which originates from distant airborne and waterborne transportation of contaminated particles. The fraction and source identification of PAHs, based on fate and transport considerations, showed a mix of petrogenic and pyrogenic sources. The relative biota-sediment accumulation factors (RBSAF), relative bioaccumulation factors from filtered water (RBAFw), and from suspended particulate matter (SPM) (RBAFSP) showed higher bioaccumulations of the lower molecular weight of PAHs (LMWs) in all stations, except Kuala Juru, which showed higher bioaccumulation of the higher molecular weight of PAHs (HMWs). Calculations of bioaccumulation factors showed that blood cockle can accumulate PAHs from sediment as well as water samples, based on the physico-chemical characteristics of habitat and behaviour of blood cockles. Correlations among concentrations of PAHs in water, SPM, sediment and A. granosa at the same sites were also found. Identification of PAH levels in different matrices showed that A. granosa can be used as a good biomonitor for LMW of PAHs and tPAHs in mudflats. Considering the toxicity and carcinogenicity of PAHs, the bioaccumulation by blood cockles are a potential hazard for both blood cockles and their consumers.
  12. Padmanabhan E, Eswaran H, Reich PF
    Sci. Total Environ., 2013 Nov 1;465:196-204.
    PMID: 23541401 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.03.024
    The relationship between greenhouse gas emission and climate change has led to research to identify and manage the natural sources and sinks of the gases. CO2, CH4, and N2O have an anthropic source and of these CO2 is the least effective in trapping long wave radiation. Soil carbon sequestration can best be described as a process of removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and relocating into soils in a form that is not readily released back into the atmosphere. The purpose of this study is to estimate carbon stocks available under current conditions in Sarawak, Malaysia. SOC estimates are made for a standard depth of 100 cm unless the soil by definition is less than this depth, as in the case of lithic subgroups. Among the mineral soils, Inceptisols tend to generally have the highest carbon contents (about 25 kg m(-2) m(-1)), while Oxisols and Ultisols rate second (about 10-15 kg m(-2) m(-1)). The Oxisols store a good amount of carbon because of an appreciable time-frame to sequester carbon and possibly lower decomposition rates for the organic carbon that is found at 1m depths. Wet soils such as peatlands tend to store significant amounts of carbon. The highest values estimated for such soils are about 114 kg m(-2) m(-1). Such appreciable amounts can also be found in the Aquepts. In conclusion, it is pertinent to recognize that degradation of the carbon pool, just like desertification, is a real process and that this irreversible process must be addressed immediately. Therefore, appropriate soil management practices should be instituted to sequester large masses of soil carbon on an annual basis. This knowledge can be used effectively to formulate strategies to prevent forest fires and clearing: two processes that can quickly release sequestered carbon to the atmosphere in an almost irreversible manner.
  13. Ikonomopoulou MP, Olszowy H, Francis R, Ibrahim K, Whittier J
    Sci. Total Environ., 2013 Apr 15;450-451:301-6.
    PMID: 23500829 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.02.031
    A variety of trace metals were measured in the egg contents of three clutches of Chelonia mydas collected from Kuala Terengganu state in Peninsular Malaysia. We quantified Mn, Cu, Zn, Se (essential trace metals) and As (anthropogenic pollutant) at several developmental stages obtained by incubating eggs at two different temperatures (27 °C and 31 °C). The incubation temperatures were chosen because they produce predominantly male or predominantly female hatchlings, respectively. The eggs were removed from the sand and washed before being placed in incubators, to ensure that the only possible source of the detected metals was maternal transfer. Other metals: Mo, Co, Ni, Cd, Sn, Sb, Hg, Tl and Pb (all non-essential metals) were detected at concentrations below the lower limit of quantitation (LLOQ). Trace metal concentrations, particularly [Zn], increased during development, other metals (Cu, As, Se and Cr) accumulated to a lesser degree than zinc but no significant differences were observed between the incubation temperatures at any stage of incubation. To date, only a few studies on trace metals in turtle embryos and hatchlings have been reported; this study will provide basic knowledge on the accumulation of trace metals during development at two different incubation temperatures.
  14. Shimizu A, Takada H, Koike T, Takeshita A, Saha M, Rinawati, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2013 May 1;452-453:108-15.
    PMID: 23500404 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2013.02.027
    Seven sulfonamides, trimethoprim, five macrolides, lincomycin and three tetracyclines were measured in 150 water samples of sewage, livestock and aquaculture wastewater, and river and coastal waters, in five tropical Asian countries. The sum of the concentrations of the target antibiotics in sewage and heavily sewage-impacted waters were at sub- to low-ppb levels. The most abundant antibiotic was sulfamethoxazole (SMX), followed by lincomycin and sulfathiazole. The average concentration of SMX in sewage or heavily sewage-impacted waters was 1720 ng/L in Vietnam (Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, Can Tho; n=15), 802ng/L in the Philippines (Manila; n=4), 538 ng/L in India (Kolkata; n=4), 282 ng/L in Indonesia (Jakarta; n=10), and 76 ng/L in Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur; n=6). These concentrations were higher than those in Japan, China, Europe, the US and Canada. A predominance of sulfonamides, especially SMX, is notable in these tropical countries. The higher average concentrations, and the predominance of SMX, can be ascribed to the lower cost of the antibiotics. Both the concentration and composition of antibiotics in livestock and aquaculture wastewater varied widely. In many cases, sulfamethazine (SMT), oxytetracycline (OTC), lincomycin, and SMX were predominant in livestock and aquaculture wastewater. Both human and animal antibiotics were widely distributed in the respective receiving waters (i.e., the Mekong River and Manila Bay). SMT/SMX ratios indicate a significant contribution from livestock wastewater to the Mekong River and nearby canals, with an estimated ~10% of river water SMX derived from such wastewater. Mass flow calculations estimate that 12 tons of SMX is discharged annually from the Mekong River into the South China Sea. Riverine inputs of antibiotics may significantly increase the concentration of such antibiotics in the coastal waters.
  15. Chuah CJ, Mukhaidin N, Choy SH, Smith GJD, Mendenhall IH, Lim YAL, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2016 08 15;562:701-713.
    PMID: 27110981 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.03.247
    A catchment-scale investigation of the prevalence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in the Kuang River Basin was carried out during the dry and rainy seasons. Water samples were collected from the Kuang River and its tributaries as well as a major irrigation canal at the study site. We also investigated the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasitic infection among dairy and beef cattle hosts. Cryptosporidium and/or Giardia were detected in all the rivers considered for this study, reflecting their ubiquity within the Kuang River Basin. The high prevalence of Cryptosporidium/Giardia in the upper Kuang River and Lai River is of a particular concern as both drain into the Mae Kuang Reservoir, a vital source of drinking-water to many local towns and villages at the research area. We did not, however, detected neither Cryptosporidium nor Giardia were in the irrigation canal. The frequency of Cryptosporidium/Giardia detection nearly doubled during the rainy season compared to the dry season, highlighting the importance of water as an agent of transport. In addition to the overland transport of these protozoa from their land sources (e.g. cattle manure, cess pits), Cryptosporidium/Giardia may also be re-suspended from the streambeds (a potentially important repository) into the water column of rivers during storm events. Faecal samples from dairy and beef cattle showed high infection rates from various intestinal parasites - 97% and 94%, respectively. However, Cryptosporidium and Giardia were only detected in beef cattle. The difference in management style between beef (freeranging) and dairy cattle (confined) may account for this disparity. Finally, phylogenetic analyses revealed that the Cryptosporidium/Giardia-positive samples contained C. ryanae (non-zoonotic) as well as Giardia intestinalis assemblages B (zoonotic) and E (non-zoonotic). With only basic water treatment facilities afforded to them, the communities of the rural area relying on these water supplies are highly at risk to Cryptosporidium/Giardia infections.
  16. Yap CK, Cheng WH, Karami A, Ismail A
    Sci. Total Environ., 2016 May 15;553:285-96.
    PMID: 26925739 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.02.092
    A total of 40 marine mussel Perna viridis populations collected (2002-2009) from 20 geographical sites located in two busy shipping lanes namely the Straits of Malacca (10 sites; 16 populations) and the Straits of Johore (8 sites; 21 populations) and three populations (2 sites) on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia, was determined for Cd, Cu, Fe, Ni, Pb and Zn concentrations. In comparison with the maximum permissible limits (MPLs) set by existing food safety guidelines, all metal concentrations found in all the mussel populations were lower than the prescribed MPLs. In terms of the provisional tolerable weekly intake prescribed by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) and oral reference doses (ORDs) by the USEPA, all the studied metals (except for Pb) were unlikely to become the limiting factors or unlikely to pose a risk for the consumption of the mussel populations. The estimated daily intake (EDI) for average level mussel (ALM) and high level mussel (HLM) consumers of mussels was found to be lower than the ORD guidelines for Cd, Cu, Fe, Ni and Zn. Furthermore, the target hazard quotient (THQ) was found to be less than 1 for ALM consumers but higher than 1 for HLM consumers in some sites. Therefore, there were no potential human health risks to the ALM consumers of the mussels. However, for Pb THQ values, the Pb levels in some mussel populations could create a health risk problem. Present results indicate that the consumption amounts of mussels should be limited for minimizing potential health risks of heavy metals to the HLM consumers.
  17. Suif Z, Fleifle A, Yoshimura C, Saavedra O
    Sci. Total Environ., 2016 Oct 15;568:933-945.
    PMID: 27338846 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.12.134
    Understanding of the distribution patterns of sediment erosion, concentration and transport in river basins is critically important as sediment plays a major role in river basin hydrophysical and ecological processes. In this study, we proposed an integrated framework for the assessment of sediment dynamics, including soil erosion (SE), suspended sediment load (SSL) and suspended sediment concentration (SSC), and applied this framework to the Mekong River Basin. The Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) model was adopted with a geographic information system to assess SE and was coupled with a sediment accumulation and a routing scheme to simulate SSL. This framework also analyzed Landsat imagery captured between 1987 and 2000 together with ground observations to interpolate spatio-temporal patterns of SSC. The simulated SSL results from 1987 to 2000 showed the relative root mean square error of 41% and coefficient of determination (R(2)) of 0.89. The polynomial relationship of the near infrared exoatmospheric reflectance and the band 4 wavelength (760-900nm) to the observed SSC at 9 sites demonstrated the good agreement (overall relative RMSE=5.2%, R(2)=0.87). The result found that the severe SE occurs in the upper (China and Lao PDR) and lower (western part of Vietnam) regions. The SSC in the rainy season (June-November) showed increasing and decreasing trends longitudinally in the upper (China and Lao PDR) and lower regions (Cambodia), respectively, while the longitudinal profile of SSL showed a fluctuating trend along the river in the early rainy season. Overall, the results described the unique spatio-temporal patterns of SE, SSL and SSC in the Mekong River Basin. Thus, the proposed integrated framework is useful for elucidating complex process of sediment generation and transport in the land and river systems of large river basins.
  18. Kooijman AM, Bruin CJW, van de Craats A, Grootjans AP, Oostermeijer JGB, Scholten R, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2016 Oct 15;568:107-117.
    PMID: 27289393 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.05.086
    Dune slacks are important habitats, with many endangered plant species. A series of eleven dune slacks of 1-42years old was studied in SW-Texel, the Netherlands, with the EU-habitat directive species Liparis loeselii present in all except the youngest and oldest. Analysis of aerial photographs revealed that new slacks are currently formed every 4-5years. In each slack, topsoil and vegetation data were collected in 2010 and 2014-2015. During succession, vegetation changed from brackish pioneer stages to dune slacks with L. loeselii and Parnassia palustris and ultimately grassland species. Differences between dune slacks and sampling periods were mostly significant. Herb cover and soil C increased with slack age, and over the five year study period, while bare sand, bulk density and pH decreased. The annual pH-decrease was 0.055 and 0.075 for pH-H2O and pH-KCl respectively, and annual C-increase 0.16% and 35gm(-2). Liparis loeselii was only present between pHH2O 5.8-7.5 and pHKCl 5.6-7.6, and only occurred at C-content below 4.3%. In lime-poor dunes, environmental conditions thus become unsuitable approximately 34years after the start of succession. In the dune slacks, Liparis loeselii established within 6years, showed peak values after 11-16years, and declined until conditions became unsuitable. Rejuvenation may occur after large storms with fresh sand deposits. However, even with further succession, the present populations are not endangered and probably last until 2040. With new dune slacks every 5years, L. loeselii occurs in approximately eight different dune slacks at the same time, ensuring viable populations also in the future. This shows that adverse effects of succession can be counteracted by dynamics on local and landscape scale.
  19. Sakai N, Mohd Yusof R, Sapar M, Yoneda M, Ali Mohd M
    Sci. Total Environ., 2016 Apr 01;548-549:43-50.
    PMID: 26799806 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.01.040
    Beta-agonists and sulfonamides are widely used for treating both humans and livestock for bronchial and cardiac problems, infectious disease and even as growth promoters. There are concerns about their potential environmental impacts, such as producing drug resistance in bacteria. This study focused on their spatial distribution in surface water and the identification of pollution sources in the Langat River basin, which is one of the most urbanized watersheds in Malaysia. Fourteen beta-agonists and 12 sulfonamides were quantitatively analyzed by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). A geographic information system (GIS) was used to visualize catchment areas of the sampling points, and source profiling was conducted to identify the pollution sources based on a correlation between a daily pollutant load of the detected contaminant and an estimated density of human or livestock population in the catchment areas. As a result, 6 compounds (salbutamol, sulfadiazine, sulfapyridine, sulfamethazine, sulfadimethoxine and sulfamethoxazole) were widely detected in mid catchment areas towards estuary. The source profiling indicated that the pollution sources of salbutamol and sulfamethoxazole were from sewage, while sulfadiazine was from effluents of cattle, goat and sheep farms. Thus, this combination method of quantitative and spatial analysis clarified the spatial distribution of these drugs and assisted for identifying the pollution sources.
  20. Norbäck D, Hashim JH, Markowicz P, Cai GH, Hashim Z, Ali F, et al.
    Sci. Total Environ., 2016 Mar 1;545-546:95-103.
    PMID: 26745297 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.12.072
    This paper studied associations between ocular symptoms, rhinitis, throat and dermal symptoms, headache and fatigue in students by ethnicity and in relation to exposure to chemical microbial markers and fungal DNA in vacuumed dust in schools in Malaysia. A total of 462 students from 8 randomly selected secondary schools in Johor Bahru, Malaysia, participated (96% response rate). Dust was vacuumed from 32 classrooms and analysed for levels of five types of endotoxin as 3-hydroxy fatty acids (C10, C12, C14, C16 and C18 3-OH), muramic acid, ergosterol and five sequences of fungal DNA. Multiple logistic regression was applied. Totally 11.9% reported weekly ocular symptoms, 18.8% rhinitis, 15.6% throat and 11.1% dermal symptoms, 20.6% headache and 22.1% tiredness. Totally 21.1% reported pollen or furry pet allergy (atopy) and 22.0% parental asthma or allergy. Chinese students had less headache than Malay and Indian had less rhinitis and less tiredness than Malay. Parental asthma/allergy was a risk factor for ocular (odds ratio=3.79) and rhinitis symptoms (OR=3.48). Atopy was a risk factor for throat symptoms (OR=2.66), headache (OR=2.13) and tiredness (OR=2.02). There were positive associations between amount of fine dust in the dust samples and ocular symptoms (p<0.001) and rhinitis (p=0.006). There were positive associations between C14 3-OH and rhinitis (p<0.001) and between C18 3-OH and dermal symptoms (p=0.007). There were negative (protective) associations between levels of total endotoxin (LPS) (p=0.004) and levels of ergosterol (p=0.03) and rhinitis and between C12 3-OH and throat symptoms (p=0.004). In conclusion, the amount of fine dust in the classroom was associated with rhinitis and other SBS symptoms and improved cleaning of the schools is important. Endotoxin in the school dust seems to be mainly protective for rhinitis and throat symptoms but different types of endotoxin could have different effects. The ethnic differences in symptoms among the students deserve further attention.
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