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First-time detection of glyphosate in the sea: IOW develops new method and successfully applies it to Baltic Sea samples

14.12.2020 10:00

IOW researcher Marisa Wirth
IOW scientist Marisa Wirth developed a new method that for the first time can detect the weed killer glyphosate in seawater. (Photo: IOW / K. Beck)

Glyphosate is one of the world’s most widely used weed killers. The disputed herbicide, which is suspected to be carcinogenic among other things, gets transported from the on-land application areas into rivers, which wash it into the sea. So far it was unclear, however, how much can be found in marine environments, because glyphosate and its metabolite aminomethylphosphonic acid could not be measured in saltwater due to methodological reasons. Marisa Wirth from the IOW has now developed a new method, with which both substances can reliably be measured in seawater and for the first time was able to detect glyphosate and AMPA in the Baltic Sea.

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