Professor Kevin Thomas is an environmental health scientist with a particular interest in understanding the environmental fate, behaviour, effects and risks associated with contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) with the goal of protecting environmental and human health. Author of over 150 papers and book chapters and Associate Editor for the journal Science of the Total Environment, Professor Thomas is a strong collaborative researcher having co-founded the international SCORE network on sewer biomarker analysis for community health assessment (

Researcher biography

Current Research Topics

  • Wastewater-based epidemiology for assessing community-wide exposure and health status. 
  • Alternative matrices for exposure monitoring. For example explanted silicone prostheses and wristbands.
  • Microparticulate plastic particles as environmental contaminants.
  • Analytical methods for the characterization of contaminants of emerging concern (target/suspect-screening/non-target analysis).

Grant highlights

  • Major competitive grants held in the last five years include:
  • RESOLVE: Comprehensive chemical characterization of the unresolved petrogenic components of produced water. Research Council of Norway. 2015-2019. $1.4M.
  • FRAME: A novel framework to assess and manage contaminants of emerging concern. European Joint Programming Initiative/Research Council of Norway. 2015-2018. $310K.
  • Microplastic impacts on the marine environment. Research Council of Norway. 2015-2019. $1M.
  • COST Action ES1307. Sewage biomarker analysis for community health assessment. EU COST Association. 2014-2018. $620K.
  • A new paradigm in drug use and human health assessment: sewage profiling at the community level (SEWPROF).  European Union. 2012-2016. $1M.
  • Novel tools for identifying and monitoring emerging toxicants on a European scale (EDA-EMERGE). European Union. 2011-2015. $1 M.

Post Docs

  • Jake O’Brien
  • Saer Samanipour (Hosted at the Norwegian Institute for Water Research, Oslo, Norway)

RhD students

  • Inger Lise Nerland (Hosted at NIVA, Norway)

Key Publications

  1. Grung, M. et al. (2017) Identification of non-regulated polycyclic aromatic compounds and other markers of urban pollution in road tunnel particulate matter. J. Hazard. Mater. 323, 36-44.
  2. Ryu, Y. et al. (2016) Increased levels of the oxidative stress biomarker 8-iso-prostaglandin F2α in wastewater associated with tobacco use. Scientific Reports. 6, 39055.
  3. Samanipour, S., Langford, K., Reid, M. J. & Thomas, K. V. (2016) A two stage algorithm for target and suspect analysis of produced water via gas chromatography coupled with high resolution time of flight mass spectrometry. J. Chromatogr. A. 1463, 153-161.
  4. Froment, J., Thomas, K. V. & Tollefsen, K. E. (2016) Automated high-throughput in vitro screening of the acetylcholine esterase inhibiting potential of environmental samples, mixtures and single compounds. Ecotoxicol. Environ. Saf. 130, 74–80.
  5. Ryu, Y. et al. (2016) Comparative measurement and quantitative risk assessment of alcohol consumption through wastewater-based epidemiology: An international study in 20 cities. Sci. Total Environ. 565, 977-983.
  6. Camacho-Muñoz, D., Kasprzyk-Hordern, B. & Thomas, K. V. (2016) Enantioselective simultaneous analysis of selected pharmaceuticals in environmental samples by ultrahigh performance supercritical fluid based chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. Anal. Chim. Acta. 934, 239-251.
  7. Ferrando-Climent, L., Reid, M. J., Rodriguez-Mozaz, S., Barceló, D. & Thomas, K. V. (2016) Identification of markers of cancer in urban sewage through the use of a suspect screening approach. J. Pharm. Biomed. Anal. 129, 571–580.
  8. Bråte, I. L. N., Eidsvoll, D. P., Steindal, C. C. & Thomas, K. V. (2016) Plastic ingestion by Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) from the Norwegian coast. Mar. Pollut. Bull. 112, 105-110.
  9. Baz-Lomba, J., Reid, M. J. & Thomas, K. V. (2016) Target and suspect screening of psychoactive substances in sewage-based samples by UHPLC-QTOF. Anal. Chim. Acta 914, 81–90.
  10. Miller, T. H. et al. (2016) The First Attempt at Non-Linear in Silico Prediction of Sampling Rates for Polar Organic Chemical Integrative Samplers (POCIS). Environ. Sci. Technol. 50, 7973–7981.
  11. Gonzalez-Marino, I. et al. (2016) Wastewater-based epidemiology to monitor synthetic cathinones use in different European countries. Environ. Sci. Technol. 50, 10089-10096.
  12. Langford, K.H., Reid, M.J., Fjeld, E., Øxnevad, S., Thomas, K.V. (2015) Environmental occurrence and risk of organic UV filters and stabilizers in multiple matrices in Norway, Environment International 80, 1-7.
  13. Muusse, M., Christensen, G., Gomes, T., Kočan, A., Langford, K., Tollefsen, K.E. Vaňková, L., Thomas, K.V. (2015) Characterization of AhR agonists reveals antagonistic activity in European herring gull (Larus argentatus) eggs, Science of The Total Environment 514, 211-218.
  14. Farkas, J. Peter, H., Ciesielski, T.M., Thomas, K.V., Sommaruga, R., Salvenmoser, W.,   Weyhenmeyer, G.A., Tranvik, L., Jenssen, B.M. (2015) Impact of TiO2 nanoparticles on freshwater bacteria from three Swedish lakes, Science of The Total Environment,
  15. Yang, Z., Anglès d’Auriac, M., Goggins, S., Kasprzyk-Hordern, B., Thomas, K.V., Frost, C.G., Estrela, P. (2015) A Novel DNA Biosensor Using a Ferrocenyl Intercalator Applied to the Potential Detection of Human Population Biomarkers in Wastewater. Environmental Science & Technology 2015 49 (9), 5609-5617
  16. Polesel, F., Lehnberg, K.,  Dott, W., Trapp, S.,  Thomas, K.V., Plósz, B.G. (2015) Factors influencing sorption of ciprofloxacin onto activated sludge: Experimental assessment and modelling implications. Chemosphere 119, 105-111.
  17. Oliveira, I.B., Beiras, R., Thomas, K.V., Suter, M.J.F. Barroso, C.M. (2014) Acute toxicity of tralopyril, capsaicin and triphenylborane pyridine to marine invertebrates. Ecotoxicology 23, 1336-1344.
  18. Langford, K., Øxnevad, S., Schøyen, M., Thomas, K.V. (2014) Do anti-parasitic medicines used in aquaculture pose a risk to the Norwegian aquatic environment? Environmental Science & Technology 48, 7774-7780.
  19. Ort, C., Nuijs, A.L.N., Berset, J-D., Bijlsma, L., Castiglioni, S., Covaci, A.,  de Voogt, P., Emke, E., Fatta‐Kassinos, D., Griffiths, P., Hernández, F., González‐Mariño, I., Grabic, R., Kasprzyk‐Hordern, B., Mastroianni, N., Meierjohann, A., Nefau, T., Östman, M., Pico, Y., Racamonde, I., Reid, M., Slobodnik, J., Terzic, S., Thomaidis, N., Thomas, K.V. (2014) Spatial differences and temporal changes in illicit drug use in Europe quantified by wastewater analysis. 109, 1338-1352.
  20. Thomas, K.V., Araújo da Silva, F.M., Langford, K.H., D Leão Souza, A., Nizzeto, L., Waichman, A.V. (2014) Screening for Selected Human Pharmaceuticals and Cocaine in the Urban Streams of Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil. JAWRA Journal of the American Water Resources Association 50 (2), 302-308.
  21. Muusse, M., Christensen, G., Langford, K., Tollefsen, K.E., Thomas, K.V. (2014) Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Agonists in European Herring Gull (Larus argentatus) Eggs From Norway. Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health, Part A: Current Issues 77, 550-556.
  22. Radovic, J.R., Thomas, K.V., Parastar, H., Díez, S., Tauler, R., Bayona, J.M. (2014) Chemometrics-Assisted Effect-Directed Analysis of Crude and Refined Oil Using Comprehensive Two-Dimensional Gas Chromatography–Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry. Environmental Science and Technology 48, 3074-3083.
  23. Reid, M.J., Baz-Lomba, J.A., Ryu, Y., Thomas, K.V. (2014) Using biomarkers in wastewater to monitor community drug use: A conceptual approach for dealing with new psychoactive substances, Science of The Total Environment 487, 651-658.
  24. Castiglioni, S., Thomas, K.V., Kasprzyk-Hordern, B., Vandam, L., Griffiths, P. (2013) Testing wastewater to detect illicit drugs: State of the art, potential and research needs, Science of The Total Environment. 487, 613-620.
  25. Reid, M.J., Derry, L., and Thomas, K.V. (2014). Analysis of new classes of recreational drugs in sewage: Synthetic cannabinoids and amphetamine‐like substances. Drug Testing and Analysis 6, 72-79.
  26. Rial, D., Radovic, J.R., Bayona, J.M., Macrae, K., Thomas, K.V., Beiras, R. (2013) Effects of simulated weathering on the toxicity of selected crude oils and their components to sea urchin embryos. Journal of Hazardous Materials 260, 67-73.
  27. Allan, I.J., Bæk, K., Kringstad, A., Roald, H.E., Thomas, K.V. (2013) Should silicone prostheses be considered for specimen banking? A pilot study into their use for human biomonitoring. Environment International 59, 462-468.
  28. Allan, I.J., Harman, C., Ranneklev, S.B., Thomas, K.V., Grung, M. (2013) Passive sampling for target and nontarget analyses of moderately polar and nonpolar substances in water. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 32, 1718-1726.
  29. Castiglioni, S., Bijlsma, L., Covaci, A., Emke, E., Hernández, F., Reid, M., Ort, C., Thomas, K.V., Van Nuijs, A.L., and de Voogt, P. (2013). Evaluation of uncertainties associated with the determination of community drug use through the measurement of sewage drug biomarkers. Environmental Science & Technology 47, 1452-1460.
  30. Langford, K.H., Reid, M., and Thomas, K.V. (2013). The occurrence of second generation anticoagulant rodenticides in non-target raptor species in Norway. Science of the Total Environment 450, 205–208.
  31. Plósz, B.G., Reid, M.J., Borup, M., Langford, K.H., and Thomas, K.V. (2013). Biotransformation kinetics and sorption of cocaine and its metabolites and the factors influencing their estimation in wastewater. Water Research 47, 2129-2140.
  32. Macken, A., Byrne, H.J., and Thomas, K.V. (2012). Effects of salinity on the toxicity of ionic silver and Ag-PVP nanoparticles to Tisbe battagliai and  Ceramium tenuicorne. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 86, 101-110.
  33. Muusse, M., Langford, K., Tollefsen, K.E., Cornelissen, G., Haglund, P., Hylland, K., and Thomas, K.V. (2012). Characterization of AhR agonist compounds in roadside snow. Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 403, 2047-2056.
  34. Plósz, B.G., Langford, K.H., and Thomas, K.V. (2012). An activated sludge modeling framework for xenobiotic trace chemicals (ASM‐X): Assessment of diclofenac and carbamazepine. Biotechnology and Bioengineering 109, 2757-2769.
  35. Reid, M.J., Langford, K.H., Grung, M., Gjerde, H., Amundsen, E.J., Morland, J., and Thomas, K.V. (2012). Estimation of cocaine consumption in the community: a critical comparison of the results from three complimentary techniques. BMJ Open 2:e001637.
  36. Thomas, K.V., Bijlsma, L., Castiglioni, S., Covaci, A., Emke, E., Grabic, R., Hernández, F., Karolak, S., Kasprzyk-Hordern, B., and Lindberg, R.H. (2012). Comparing illicit drug use in 19 European cities through sewage analysis. Science of the Total Environment 432, 432-439.
  37. Harman, C., Reid, M., and Thomas, K.V. (2011a). In situ calibration of a passive sampling device for selected illicit drugs and their metabolites in wastewater, and subsequent year-long assessment of community drug usage. Environmental Science & Technology 45, 5676–5682.