Selected Fungicides as Potential EDC Estrogenic Micropollutants in the Environment

Molecules. 2023 Nov 5;28(21):7437. doi: 10.3390/molecules28217437.


An increasing level of pesticide exposition is being observed as a result of the consumption of large amounts of fruits, vegetables and grain products, which are key components of the vegetarian diet. Fungicides have been classified as endocrine-disrupting compounds, but their mechanisms of action have not yet been clarified. The effect of boscalid (B), cyprodinil (C) and iprodione (I) combined with Tamoxifen (T) and 17β-estradiol (E2) on cell viability, cell proliferation, reporter gene expression, ROS content, the cell membrane's function, cell morphology and antioxidant enzymes gene expression in MCF-7 and T47D-KBluc cell lines were investigated. The cell lines were chosen due to their response to 17β -estradiol. The selected fungicides are commonly used in Poland to protect crops against fungi. Our results revealed that the studied fungicides caused significant increases in cell viability and proliferation, and estrogenic activity was present in all studied compounds depending on their concentrations. Oxidative stress activated uncontrolled cancer cell proliferation by inducing ROS production and by inhibiting antioxidant defense. Our findings verify that the studied fungicides could possibly exhibit endocrine-disrupting properties and exposure should be avoided.

Keywords: EDC compounds; boscalid; breast cancer; cyprodinil; iprodione.

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Estradiol / pharmacology
  • Estrogens* / pharmacology
  • Estrone
  • Fungicides, Industrial* / pharmacology
  • Reactive Oxygen Species


  • Estrogens
  • Fungicides, Industrial
  • Antioxidants
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Estradiol
  • Estrone