Abstract: Environmental loading of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that originate from pharmaceutical wastes are known to cause adverse impacts on aquatic life and public health. In this article, a new sensitive method has been proposed for quantification of EDCs in complicated pharmaceutical wastes using a molecularly imprinted polymer (MIP) extraction followed by liquid chromatograph-mass spectrometer (LC-MS) analysis. The calibration curves of EDCs showed linearity in the concentration range of 1-100 μg L-1 (r>0.996) with a 10 mL loading of pharmaceutical waste samples. The EDCs recoveries obtained by the MIP for pharmaceutical effluents, air particulates and treated sludge were 91%, 89% and 84%, respectively; and the recovery values were better than the conventional SPE materials such as powdered activated carbon and resin. The quantification of 17β-estradiol, a model EDC molecule, using LC-MS showed an excellent lower limits of detection in the pharmaceutical effluents, air particulates and solid waste in the order of 0.19 μg L-1, 0.13μg g-1, 0.12μg g-1, respectively.
Author keywords: Endocrine disrupting chemicals, Molecularly imprinted polymers, Solid phase extraction, Pharmaceutical wastes, LC, MS analysis