UV Filters Biodegradation by Fungi, Metabolites Identification and Biological Activity Assessment

M. Badia-Fabregat, G. Caminal, T. Vicent, P. Blanquez, P. Gago-Ferrero, A. Olivares, B. Piña, M. S. Díaz-Cruz, D. Barceló

    Research output: Chapter in BookChapterResearchpeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013. Organic UV filters used in cosmetics and sunlight protection of materials are considered emerging contaminants. These xenobiotic compounds occur in the environment in relevant concentrations and display critical properties such as environmental persistence and bioaccumulation. They enter the environment mainly through the liquid effluent of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), but, due to their high hydrophobicity, they are also adsorbed in WWTP sludge, that is, eventually spread on agricultural fields as fertilizer. The treatment of WWTP sludge with the white-rot fungi Trametes versicolor has emerged as a feasible alternative to current conventional treatment processes to degrade them in a range from 87% in the case of 3-(4′-methylbenzylidene) camphor (4-MBC) to 100% of benzophenone-3 (BP3) and its metabolite 4,4′-dihydroxybenzophenone (4DHB). When treating the sewage sludge to remove sunscreens content, it is crucial to establish the biological activity profile along the process. Oestrogenic activity was eliminated by the T. versicolor treatment, indicating that none of the resulting metabolites possessed significant oestrogenic activity at the produced concentrations. These results demonstrate the suitability of fungi to degrade sunscreen agents and eliminate their oestrogenic activity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationHandbook of Environmental Chemistry
    Number of pages25
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013


    • Biological activity
    • Degradation
    • Fungi
    • HPLC-MS/MS analysis
    • Metabolites
    • UV filters


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