The utility of municipal wastewater analysis for drug epidemiology, food safety and environmental monitoring: From targeted analysis of biomarkers to non-target screening.




Date: 14:00:00 - Oct 13 2016
Speakers: Malcolm Reid
Moderators: Rachael Simpson


Sewage contains the excreted biomarkers of endogenous human metabolism that directly reflects the exposure and stressors placed upon an entire contributing community. The quantitative measurement of these specific biomarkers in sewage from communities allows the averaged patterns of factors related to lifestyle, disease and environment to be used for the assessment of human health and the environment.

While most research in this field has been aimed at estimating the use of illicit drugs, the approach has in recent years also been extended to determine the use or occurrence of other substances.  These include pesticide metabolites from food and agriculture, and markers of oxidative stress which quantify a biological system's ability to readily detoxify reactive intermediates such as arise from environmental pollutants. 

The technique is analogous to the analysis of a pooled-urine sample from the entire population, and so has direct links with clinical toxicology and the associated analytical methods.  Wastewater is however a challenging matrix so significant advances have been made in both targeted analysis and screening methodologies.

The technology and application will be presented with examples from programs coordinated by the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) and the SCORE network (

NIVA is Norway’s foremost professional competence centre for environmental and resource issues relating to the field of water. NIVA plays a vital role as a provider of research-based studies and advisory services, and has a central role in providing scientifically based knowledge for policy-making on water related issues worldwide.


  • Understand the field and application of wastewater-based epidemiology
  • Discover the analytical techniques and technology that are essential for the analysis of biomarker in wastewater.
  • Learn about future directions and analytical methods currently in development

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Malcolm Reid
Malcolm Reid (Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA))

Malcolm Reid (PhD) is a researcher for the environmental chemistry section of the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA). Malcolm has 15 years of experience in the research, development and implementation of new analytical techniques for the detection of pharmaceuticals, drugs and metabolites in samples from the human population and the environment. Malcolm has in recent years focused on building the non-target screening platforms within NIVA. He also has a particular interest in the field of wastewater-based epidemiology which presents exciting opportunities for monitoring and the evaluation of human health and the environment.


Rachael Simpson
Rachael Simpson (International Labmate Ltd)

Editor for International Environmental Technology, Asian Environmental Technology and Petro Industry News

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