ENGINEERING HDR SEMINAR SERIES (47/2013) : Developing a chitosan based material for adsorption of pharmaceuticals from water

Ms. Parisa Amouzgar, postgraduate student from School of Engineering, Monash University Sunway Campus

Date: 2013-10-31
Time: 14:00 to 15:00
Venue: Engineering Meeting Room 1, 5-4-22


Pharmaceutical products are being increasingly detected in the environment. However, conventional treatment systems do not provide an adequate treatment for pharmaceutical drug elimination and still there is not a regulated standard for their limitation in water. Adsorption is one of the most effective and practical techniques to remove pollutants from water. Nowadays, considerable focus is on development of natural wastes to be utilized as adsorbent in wastewater treatment plants. Among bio waste materials, chitosan has many applications in various fields based on its chemical and physical properties together with being abundant and cheap. Chitosan has removal capabilities for certain pollutants from water such as dyes, metal ions, phenol and different anions. Moreover it is widely used as carrier for pharmaceutical components in drug delivery. Based on the properties and applications that are already known for chitosan, using it to remove pharmaceuticals could resolve costly and inefficient techniques that are currently employed in wastewater treatments. As a matter of fact, adsorption of pharmaceutical from wastewater using chitosan could be a platform for removing these compounds from water and then use them back in drug delivery. This study focuses on producing developed chitosan based adsorbent, in order to investigate the feasibility of using chitosan to remove pharmaceuticals including Acetaminophen, Carbamazepine, and Estrogen from water as representative of pharmaceuticals from different categories. Results from the preliminary study have shown that pure chitosan without modification is not feasible on Acetaminophen removal.  Further study is on grafting chitosan with Fe3Oand ß-Cyclodextrin to improve adsorption capacity. The main direction in this study is to utilize magnetic based modifiers for easier separation and to enhance the adsorption. Characterization of modified chitosan adsorbent and adsorption performance for Acetaminophen, Carbamazepine and Estrogen will be studied next to optimize the condition for better removal of pharmaceuticals from water. The final steps are including development of a continuous system for sorption (packed bed or fluidized bed system) based on the adsorbent properties and the closing part will be recovering the adsorbed pharmaceutical with chitosan. Releasing the adsorbed drug with chitosan needs further investigation on desorption and releasing the pharmaceutical to reuse it in drug delivery.

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About the Speaker

Ms. Parisa Amouzgar is a postgraduate student in the School of Engineering.She obtained her Master form Universiti Sains Malaysia and have join Monash University in 2012 for postgraduate studies under the supervision of Dr. Babak Salamatinia and A/P. Chan Eng Seng. Her study focuses on the development of a chitosan based adsorbent to remove pharmaceuticals from water.