Lipid-water partition coefficients and correlations with uptakes by algae of organic compounds

Wei Nung Hung, Cary T. Chiou, Tsair Fuh Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


In view of the scarcity of the lipid-water partition coefficients (Ktw) for organic compounds, the logKtw values for many environmental contaminants were measured using ultra-pure triolein as the model lipid. Classes of compounds studied include alkyl benzenes, halogenated benzenes, short-chain chlorinated hydrocarbons, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, polychlorinated biphenyls, and organochlorine pesticides. In addition to logKtw determination, the uptakes of these compounds from water by a dry algal species were measured to evaluate the lipid effect on the algal uptake. The measured logKtw are closely related to their respective logKow (octanol-water), with logKow=1.9 to 6.5. A significant difference is observed between the present and early measured logKtw for compounds with logKow>~5, which is attributed to the presence and absence of a triolein microemulsion in water affecting the solute partitioning. The observed lipid-normalized algae-water distribution coefficients (logKaw/lipid) are virtually identical to the respective logKtw values, which manifests the dominant lipid-partition effect of the compounds with algae.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-202
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Aug 30

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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