The possibility of applying main AOP techniques, namely ozonation, H2O2/UV photolysis and TiO2 photocatalysis to provide a significant reduction of toxicity of pharmaceutical mixtures has been evaluated. For the preparation of the mixture six pharmaceuticals were chosen among those found at highest concentrations in Sewage Treatment Plant effluents, namely carbamazepine, clofibric acid, diclofenac, sulfamethoxazole, ofloxacin and propranolol.
The blue-green alga Synechococcus leopoliensis and the rotifer Brachyonus calyciflorus were utilised to assess the toxicity of the mixtures after AOP treatments. All the toxicity tests were performed using chronic standardized bioassays. The best results were obtained with ozonation. With this type of treatment a complete removal of mixture toxicity on S. leopolensis was obtained even after the shortest time of application (1 min). The ozonation treatment leads also to removal of all the pharmaceutical mixture toxicity on B. calyciflorus, by applying the oxidizing agent for at least for 2 minutes.