The sewer as a mirror of society


About the research

Did you know that every time you visit the toilet, you are helping science? Tim Boogaerts (UAntwerp) dives into the sewers for his research. Because every time we consume alcohol, drugs, or medicines, traces of these can be found in our urine, which eventually ends up in the sewer after a toilet visit. By analysing the sewage in a particular city, Tim and his colleagues can get a better idea of, among other things, how much and which drugs are used in that city.

Tim Boogaerts

A strong interest in chemistry, healthcare and the opportunity to make a positive impact on society motivated Tim Boogaerts to study pharmaceutical sciences. After a first introduction with wastewater research during his Bachelor, Tim was convinced to pursue a PhD to help create analytical methods to measure drugs, alcohol and pharmaceuticals in wastewater. During his PhD research, Tim explored how the analysis of wastewater could explore lifestyle and health aspects of our society.

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