1. By studying nine different pharmaceutical active compounds in Yamuna river, researchers have now pointed out that it can “possibly cause chronic toxicity” to aquatic life and to humans who use this water for drinking purposes.

2. The researchers from IIT – Delhi and National Mission for Clean Ganga collected water samples from six sites across the 25km river stretch during three different seasons.

3. The team looked at six over- the –counter drugs (aspirin, paracetamol, ibuprofen, ranitidine, caffeine, diclofenac) and three prescription drugs (carbamazepine, codeine, diazepam).

4. Ibuprofen and paracetamol were found at a high concentration of 1.49 and 1.08 microgram per litre respectively. Previous studies have shown that even small concentration of ibuprofen could cause an antagonistic effect on aquatic organisms.

5. Caffeine was found in high concentration in most of the sites. Caffeine is used as a stimulant in medicine; residue from beverages and other food products may be a contributor.

6. Even prescription drugs such as carbamazepine were found in the samples with the highest level at 1.35 microgram per litre.

Courtesy: THE HINDU

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