Occurrence and analysis of endocrine-disrupting compounds in a water supply system

  • A. R. M CarvalhoEmail author
  • V. V. Cardoso
  • A. Rodrigues
  • E. Ferreira
  • M. J. Benoliel
  • E. A. Duarte


This paper presents the study of the occurrence of 10 endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) in 60 water samples using a method for simultaneous quantification and confirmation of the presence of these emerging compounds, using ultra-performance liquid chromatography with electrospray ionization and tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-ESI-MS/MS). All samples were previously extracted by solid-phase extraction (SPE). Several natural and synthetic hormones (17-β-estradiol, ethinylestradiol, estriol, estrone, progesterone, mestranol, and diethylstilbestrol) and some industrial products (4-n-nonylphenol, 4-tert-octylphenol, and bisphenol A) were chosen for this survey. The analytical limits were calculated for each compound and were used in the identification and quantification of these target compounds in EPAL’s water supply system. In this study, several samples were taken from the main intakes of water (surface and groundwater) used for production of water for human consumption and from different sampling points of the drinking water distribution system (piping, nets, and reservoirs). Some target compounds, such as estriol, 4-tert-octylphenol, mestranol, and nonylphenol, were found in trace amounts in several water samples. However, the studied endocrine-disrupting appeared in very low concentrations when compared with the assessed analytical limits.


Water supply system Endocrine-disrupting compounds Ultra-performance liquid chromatography Solid-phase extraction Environmental health 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. R. M Carvalho
    • 1
    Email author
  • V. V. Cardoso
    • 2
  • A. Rodrigues
    • 2
  • E. Ferreira
    • 2
  • M. J. Benoliel
    • 2
  • E. A. Duarte
    • 1
  1. 1.Departamento de Ciências e Engenharia dos Biossistemas (DCEB)Instituto Superior de AgronomiaLisbonPortugal
  2. 2.Direcção de Controlo de Qualidade da Água, Laboratório CentralEmpresa Portuguesa de Águas Livres, S.A. – EPALLisbonPortugal

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