Leaching of bisphenol A (BPA) to seawater from polycarbonate plastic and its degradation by reactive oxygen species

Chemosphere. 2003 Apr;51(1):55-62. doi: 10.1016/s0045-6535(02)00789-0.


In this study, (1) change in the concentration of bisphenol A (BPA) leached from polycarbonate (PC) tube to control water (BPA free), seawater and river water at 20 and 37 degrees C as a function of time, (2) the fate of BPA caused by addition of H(2)O(2) and Fe(3+) to seawater containing BPA leached from PC tube were assessed. BPA leached from PC tube to all water samples increased with the ascendant of temperature and with the passage of time. The BPA leaching velocity in seawater was the fastest in three samples (11 ng/day for seawater, 4.8 ng/day for river water 0.8 ng/day for control water at 37 degrees C).BPA leaching velocity from PC tube was significantly high at pH 8 (50 mM Na(2)HPO(4)) and increased dose-dependently. There was no difference in the velocity of BPA among the 50 mM phosphate-buffers at pH 6.5, 7.0 and 7.5. BPA was leached three times higher by addition of Na(+) than K(+). However, the higher the K(+) concentration, the larger the BPA leached from PC tube. Na(+) mixed with PO(4)(-) was effective on BPA leaching from PC tube, but not with SO(4)(-) or Cl(-). The results suggested that BPA leaching from PC tube would be attributed to the concentration of bibasic phosphate such as Na(2)HPO(4) and K(2)HPO(4) in water samples. BPA was degraded in both control water and seawater in the presence of radical oxygen species, but the degradation rate was lower in seawater than in control water, suggesting that anti-oxidative system exists in seawater. Neo-synthesized substance in both control water and seawater in the presence of reactive oxygen species was identified as BPA-quinone by LC-MS.

MeSH terms

  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Benzoquinones / chemistry
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Mass Spectrometry
  • Models, Chemical
  • Phenols / chemistry*
  • Polymers / chemistry*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / chemistry*
  • Seawater / chemistry*
  • Time Factors
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / analysis*


  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Benzoquinones
  • Phenols
  • Polymers
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical
  • lexan
  • quinone
  • bisphenol A