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Fate Estimation of Estrogenic Substances in an Urban River by Flux Calculation

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This study investigated the fate of estrogenic substances in an urban river receiving discharge from wastewater treatment plants (WTPs) by flux calculation, focusing on the middle reaches of the Tama River in Tokyo, which is one of the most urbanized rivers in Japan. The level of estrogenic activity flux was almost negligibly small at the upstream station. The level was considerably raised after inflows from the WTPs and then the level declined in the lower reaches of the river. When contributions of estrogenic substances to estrogenic activity were estimated, estrone (E1) was the primary contributor to the total estrogenic activity in all the sampling stations, followed by estradiol (E2). The contribution of nonylphenol to estrogenic activity was small. The E1 and E2 accounted for approximately 90% or more of estrogenic activity in the Tama River. As for the total fluxes of the estrogenic substances in the study area in the Tama River, the proportion of flux associated with WTP discharge was approximately 100% of the total fluxes, and the effects of the tributaries flowing into the river were almost negligible. When the reduction ratios of estrogenic activity were calculated by the flux, the ratios were found to increase toward the lower reaches of the river. Similar changes were observed for E1. Meanwhile, the change of reduction ratios for E2 was different from that observed for estrogenic activity.
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Keywords: 17β-estradiol; endocrine disruptors; estrogenic activity; estrone; fate; recombinant yeast assay

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-11-01

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    Water Environment Research (WER) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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