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J Agric Food Chem. 2001 Nov;49(11):5285-93.

Degradation of [(14)C]carfentrazone-ethyl under aerobic aquatic conditions.

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Agricultural Products Group, FMC Corporation, P.O. Box 8, Princeton, New Jersey 08543, USA.


Carfentrazone-ethyl (CF-E) is an aryl triazolinone reduced-risk herbicide for use on corn, wheat, and soybean. As part of the assessment of its metabolic fate, the aerobic aquatic metabolism of [(14)C]CF-E at a concentration of 0.22 microg/g was investigated. Two separate aquatic sediments (silty clay loam and clay loam soils, flooded with water) were used in the study. At each of eight samplings throughout the 30-day study, the distribution of radioactivity between surface water, sediment, and volatile fractions was assessed. At zero time, the majority of the applied radioactivity was contained in the water layer (83-90%), declining to 70-80% after 30 days. This was coupled with an increase in the percent radioactivity in the soil layer from 4-6% at day 0 to 13-19% after 30 days. Nonextractable soil residues and volatile degradation products were formed in negligible amounts. Analysis of the incubation extracts from either aquatic sediment indicated a rapid conversion (<2 days) of the parent CF-E ester to carfentrazone-chloropropionic acid. Over time, increasing amounts of a cascade of acidic degradation products comprising >90% of the applied radioactivity were formed. Identification of these degradation products was initially achieved through chromatographic comparison with reference synthetic standards and subsequently confirmed using LC-MS analysis. A degradation pathway for CF-E under aerobic aquatic conditions is proposed.

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