Livestock Hormones in the Environment


Livestock manure may contain both endogenous and synthetic steroid hormones. The latter are used as growth hormones in livestock. This presentation reviews hormone use in livestock, transport, and fate of hormones to the environment, effects of hormones in humans and wildlife, and future research needs. The growth hormones approved for use are trenbolone acetate, zeranol, and melegestrol acetate. Hormones are excreted in the feces or urine and are transported to aquatic environments through run-off of land-applied manure. Sorption and degradation are the primary mechanisms of removal of hormones from the environment. Endogenous hormones sorb strongly to soils and degrade quickly under aerobic conditions, while synthetic growth hormones are persistent in the environment. Both types of hormones are extremely potent and may cause adverse reproductive effects at concentrations less than 10 ng/L. Future research emphasis should include the effects of sediments on aquatic species and the occurrence of growth hormones and testosterone in the environment and meat products.

Meeting Name

233rd ACS National Meeting & Exposition (2007: Mar. 25-29, Chicago, IL)


Biological Sciences

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Article - Conference proceedings

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© 2007 American Chemical Society (ACS), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Mar 2007