A broad number of natural and synthetic progestins are widely used in human and veterinary therapies. Although progestins exhibit adverse effects in aquatic organisms, information about environmental occurrence and fate have been limited to several compounds, hampering the accuracy of risk assessments of the compounds. In this study, a selective and sensitive analytical method was established to simultaneously determine 19 natural and 42 synthetic progestins in environmental waters, and the synthetic progestins included 19-nortestosterone, 17α-hydroxyprogesterone and progesterone derivatives. All of the target compounds were effectively separated using an HSS T3 column, and the recoveries for effluent and river samples were 80–115% and 75–105%, respectively. The detection limits for the 61 analytes were in the range of 0.05–0.60 ng/L and 0.03–0.40 ng/L for the effluent and river samples, respectively. The developed method is applied to analyze the target progestogens in sewage effluent and river water samples from Beijing. The detected concentrations of natural progesterone metabolites (3α-hydroxy-5β-tetrahydroprogesterone) were up to 63 times higher than those of the parent compound. Of the three groups of synthetic progestins, the progesterone derivatives were detected for the first time and had the highest concentrations followed by the 19-nortestosterone and 17α-hydroxyprogesterone derivatives. In contrast to previous studies, the predominant derivative compounds of 19-nortestosterone were found to be 19-nortestosterone, gestodene and mifepristone, and those of 17α-hydroxyprogesterone were 6-epi-medroxy progesterone 17-acetate and melengestrol acetate. The toxicities and environmental risk of these emerging progestins deserves more attention in the future.
Water Research – Elsevier
Published: Apr 15, 2018
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