The distributions, removals and estrogenic effects of selected endocrine disrupting chemicals in two drinking water factories in China

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The distributions and effects of 31 selected endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in two drinking water factories were analyzed in this study. The distributions of EDCs were analyzed by solid phase extraction (SPE) combined with liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). The concentrations of these EDCs were from lower than the LOD (limit of detection) to 23.13 ng L − 1 in the samples; most of them were lower than 1 ng L − 1. The highest concentration (23.13 ± 1.45 ng L − 1) was detected in the raw water. Twenty-six chemicals were found in the raw water and only five in the finished water of drinking water factory A, while 25 chemicals were detected in the raw water and two in the finished water of drinking water factory B. The results indicate that most of the EDCs can be removed by the water treatment process. In the advanced treatment process, the ozonation processes have the highest removal efficiency. Separate analyses in May and September show similar results. Apart from the chemical analysis, yeast strain transformed when the estrogen receptor α (ERα) gene was employed to test the estrogenic effects of the water samples. Due to the low concentrations of these EDCs, no significant estrogenic effects were found from the samples.

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