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A review on bisphenol A occurrences, health effects and treatment process via membrane technology for drinking water

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Massive utilization of bisphenol A (BPA) in the industrial production of polycarbonate plastics has led to the occurrence of this compound (at μg/L to ng/L level) in the water treatment plant. Nowadays, the presence of BPA in drinking water sources is a major concern among society because BPA is one of the endocrine disruption compounds (EDCs) that can cause hazard to human health even at extremely low concentration level. Parallel to these issues, membrane technology has emerged as the most feasible treatment process to eliminate this recalcitrant contaminant via physical separation mechanism. This paper reviews the occurrences and effects of BPA toward living organisms as well as the application of membrane technology for their removal in water treatment plant. The potential applications of using polymeric membranes for BPA removal are also discussed. Literature revealed that modifying membrane surface using blending approach is the simple yet effective method to improve membrane properties with respect to BPA removal without compromising water permeability. The regeneration process helps in maintaining the performances of membrane at desired level. The application of large-scale membrane process in treatment plant shows the feasibility of the technology for removing BPA and possible future prospect in water treatment process.

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The authors wish to thank Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (MOHE) for providing LRGS grant (R.J30000.7809.4 L810) for Water Security entitled Protection of Drinking Water: Source Abstraction and Treatment (203/PKT/6720006) as financial support of this project. This support is greatly appreciated. M.S. Muhamad thanks the MOHE for the MyBrain15 (MyPhD) sponsorship received during her PhD studies.

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Correspondence to Mimi Suliza Muhamad or Mohd Razman Salim.

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Muhamad, M.S., Salim, M.R., Lau, W.J. et al. A review on bisphenol A occurrences, health effects and treatment process via membrane technology for drinking water. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23, 11549–11567 (2016).

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  • Bisphenol A
  • Occurrences
  • Effects
  • Water treatment plant
  • Membrane technology
  • Surface modification