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Water a major source of endocrine-disrupting chemicals

Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are toxic compounds that occur naturally or are the output of anthropogenic activities that negatively impact both humans and wildlife. A number of diseases are associated with these disruptors, including reproductive disorders, cardiovascular disorders, kidney disease, neurological disorders, autoimmune disorders and some cancers. Due to their integral role in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, packaging companies, agrochemical industries, pesticides, and plasticisers, the scientific awareness on natural and artificial EDCs are increasing. As EDCs tend to bioaccumulate in body tissues and may also persist longer in the environment, the concentrations of these organic compounds may increase far from their original point of concentrations. Water remains the major source, as they are neither biodegraded nor bioremediated from water with the conventional treatment strategies thereby requiring much more efficient strategies to combat EDC contamination.

Recently, due to genetically engineered microorganisms, genome editing and the knowledge of protein and metabolic engineering has revolutionised the field of bioremediation, helping to breakdown EDCs effectively. This review highlights the importance of water as a source of EDC exposure and the consequences on human health as well as the importance of different remediation and bioremediation approaches.

Thacharodi, A., Hassan, S., Hegde, T. A., Thacharodi, D. D., Brindhadevi, K. and Pugazhendhi, A. (2023). Water a major source of endocrine-disrupting chemicals: An overview on the occurrence, implications on human health and bioremediation strategies. Environmental Research231, 116097. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envres.2023.116097.