Endocrine-Disrupting Pollutants in Industrial Wastewater and Their Degradation and Detoxification Approaches

  • Izharul Haq
  • Abhay RajEmail author


Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), a group of chemicals that alter the normal function of the endocrine system of humans and wildlife, are a matter of great concern. These compounds are widely distributed in respective environments such as water, wastewater, sediments, soils, and atmosphere. Chemicals like pesticides, pharmaceuticals and personal care products, flame retardants, natural hormones, heavy metals, and chemicals derived from basic compounds (such as plasticizers and catalysts) are major endocrine disruptors. EDCs emerging from industries such as pulp and paper, tannery, distillery, textile, pharma, etc. have been considered as major source of contamination. Alkylphenol ethoxylates (APEOs), bisphenol A (BPA), phthalates, chlorophenols, norethindrone, triclosan, gonadotropin compounds, pesticides, etc. are generally escaped during wastewater treatment and contaminate the environment. Endocrine-disrupting activity of these compounds is well documented to have adverse effect on human-animal health. Globally, efforts are being approached for their efficient removal from sewage/wastewaters. Thus, this chapter provides updated overview on EDC generation, characteristics, and toxicity as well as removal/degradation techniques including physical, chemical, and biological methods. This chapter also reviews the current knowledge of the potential impacts of EDCs on human health so that the effects can be known and remedies applied for the problem as soon as possible.


Endocrine disruptors Industrial wastewaters Human-animal health Biological treatment 



The authors are thankful to the director of CSIR-IITR, Lucknow (India), for his encouragement and support. We greatly acknowledge the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India, New Delhi, for the funding (Grant No.BT/PR20460/BCE/8/1386/2016).


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Environmental Microbiology Laboratory, Environmental Toxicology GroupCSIR-Indian Institute of Toxicology Research (CSIR-IITR)LucknowIndia

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