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Article

Investigation of Biotransformation Products of p-Methoxymethylamphetamine and Dihydromephedrone in Wastewater by High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry

1
Toxicological Center, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Campus Drie Eiken, University of Antwerp, Universiteitsplein 1, 2610 Antwerp, Belgium
2
Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Panepistimiopolis Zografou, 15771 Athens, Greece
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Co-first authors. These two authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editor: David J. Beale
Metabolites 2021, 11(2), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11020066
Received: 24 December 2020 / Revised: 20 January 2021 / Accepted: 21 January 2021 / Published: 25 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Psychoactive Substances - Metabolism and Metabolomics)
There is a paucity of information on biotransformation and stability of new psychoactive substances (NPS) in wastewater. Moreover, the fate of NPS and their transformation products (TPs) in wastewater treatment plants is not well understood. In this study, batch reactors seeded with activated sludge were set up to evaluate biotic, abiotic, and sorption losses of p-methoxymethylamphetamine (PMMA) and dihydromephedrone (DHM) and identify TPs formed during these processes. Detection and identification of all compounds was performed with target and suspect screening approaches using liquid chromatography quadrupole-time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Influent and effluent 24 h composite wastewater samples were collected from Athens from 2014 to 2020. High elimination rates were found for PMMA (80%) and DHM (97%) after a seven-day experiment and degradation appeared to be related to biological activity in the active bioreactor. Ten TPs were identified and the main reactions were O- and N-demethylation, oxidation, and hydroxylation. Some TPs were reported for the first time and some were confirmed by reference standards. Identification of some TPs was enhanced by the use of an in-house retention time prediction model. Mephedrone and some of its previously reported human metabolites were formed from DHM incubation. Retrospective analysis showed that PMMA was the most frequently detected compound. View Full-Text
Keywords: wastewater-based epidemiology; new psychoactive substances; mephedrone; transformation products; liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry; target and suspect screening; retention time prediction model; activated sludge wastewater-based epidemiology; new psychoactive substances; mephedrone; transformation products; liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry; target and suspect screening; retention time prediction model; activated sludge
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kinyua, J.; Psoma, A.K.; Rousis, N.I.; Nika, M.-C.; Covaci, A.; van Nuijs, A.L.N.; Τhomaidis, Ν.S. Investigation of Biotransformation Products of p-Methoxymethylamphetamine and Dihydromephedrone in Wastewater by High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry. Metabolites 2021, 11, 66. https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11020066

AMA Style

Kinyua J, Psoma AK, Rousis NI, Nika M-C, Covaci A, van Nuijs ALN, Τhomaidis ΝS. Investigation of Biotransformation Products of p-Methoxymethylamphetamine and Dihydromephedrone in Wastewater by High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry. Metabolites. 2021; 11(2):66. https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11020066

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kinyua, Juliet, Aikaterini K. Psoma, Nikolaos I. Rousis, Maria-Christina Nika, Adrian Covaci, Alexander L.N. van Nuijs, and Νikolaos S. Τhomaidis 2021. "Investigation of Biotransformation Products of p-Methoxymethylamphetamine and Dihydromephedrone in Wastewater by High-Resolution Mass Spectrometry" Metabolites 11, no. 2: 66. https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo11020066

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