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Environmental fate & pathways

Biodegradation in water: screening tests

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Administrative data

biodegradation in water: screening tests
Type of information:
experimental study
Adequacy of study:
key study
Study period:
Not stated
2 (reliable with restrictions)
Rationale for reliability incl. deficiencies:
other: Study well documented, meets generally accepted scientific principles.

Data source

Reference Type:
study report
Report date:

Materials and methods

Test guideline
no guideline followed
Principles of method if other than guideline:
The biodegradability of the test substance was studied by adding the material as the sole source of carbon to batch cultures with activated sludge from an industrial waste water treatment plant (AVEBE - Foxhol), which was previously adapted to the substance. Degradation was measured by removal of Dissolved Organic Carbon (DOC) and release of chloride (Cl-). The biological nature of the degradation was confirmed by comparison of the DOC-removal in sterilized batches.
GLP compliance:

Test material

Constituent 1
Chemical structure
Reference substance name:
(3-chloro-2-hydroxypropyl)trimethylammonium chloride
EC Number:
EC Name:
(3-chloro-2-hydroxypropyl)trimethylammonium chloride
Cas Number:
Molecular formula:
3-chloro-2-hydroxy-N,N,N-trimethylpropan-1-aminium chloride
Details on test material:
Purity: 60% active ingredient in water

Study design

Oxygen conditions:
Inoculum or test system:
activated sludge, industrial (adaptation not specified)
Details on inoculum:
- Source of inoculum/activated sludge: Activated sludge from Foxhol WWTP

- Pretreatment: Washed with mineral medium

- Concentration of organic matter 0.2 g/l

Duration of test (contact time):
10 d
Initial test substance concentration
Initial conc.:
2.5 mmol/L
Based on:
test mat.
Parameter followed for biodegradation estimation
Parameter followed for biodegradation estimation:
DOC removal
Details on study design:
- Composition of medium: The mineral medium was prepared by adding 10 ml phosphate solution, 1 ml magnesium sulphate solution, and 1 ml trace solution to 1 litre of demineralised water. The phosphate solution contained 33 g/l (NH4)2HPO4, 43.5 g/l K2HPO4, 54.6 g/l NaH2PO4and 62.3 g/l Na2HPO4. The magnesium sulphate solution contained 246 g/l MgSO4.7H20. The trace solution in 1M HNO3 contained 5.56 g/l FeSO4.7H2O, 1.69 g/l MnSO4.HO0, 2.81 g/l CoSO4.7H2O, 1.47 g/l CaCl2, 0.25 g/l CuSO4.5H2O and 0.29 g/l ZnSo4.7H2O. The medium was sterilised at 120°C in an autoclave.

- Test temperature: 30°C
- pH: 7
- pH adjusted: no

- Culturing apparatus: Serum bottles (1100 ml) sealed with butyl rubber septum
- Measuring equipment: DOC was measured using a Dohrmann DC-190 TOC analyser
- Test performed in closed vessels due to significant volatility of test substance: No
- Test performed in open system: No

- Inoculum blank: Yes
- Abiotic sterile control: Yes
- Toxicity control: Yes
Reference substance
Reference substance:
not required

Results and discussion

Preliminary study:
No preliminary study.
Test performance:
See details on results
% Degradation
% degradation (DOC removal)
Sampling time:
3 d
Details on results:
Under aerobic conditions 90 % removal of DOC was observed after three days using an initial CHPTAC concentration of 563 mg/l (3
mM). No further degradation was observed from day three till day 10. In the sterile control sample no DOC removal was

BOD5 / COD results

Results with reference substance:
Not applicable.

Any other information on results incl. tables

In the sterile batches chemical dechlorination was observed; no DOC removal, the chloride concentration increased over the 10 day period from 3.5 mM to 5.3 mM.

Applicant's summary and conclusion

Validity criteria fulfilled:
not applicable
Interpretation of results:
other: under test condition biodegradable
In a biodegradation test using previously adapted activated sludge, 90% removal of the test substance was observed following 3 days incubation at 30°C. Under the conditions of the test, CHPTAC is therefore considered to be biodegradable. The test does not meet the standards required to assess ready or inherent biodegradation under EC criteria.