Persistent organic pollutants in water resources: Fate, occurrence, characterization and risk analysis

J. Aravind kumar, T. Krithiga, S. Sathish, A. Annam Renita, D. Prabu, S. Lokesh, R. Geetha, S. Karthick Raja Namasivayam, Mika Sillanpaa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Citations (Scopus)


Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are organic chemicals that can persist in the environment for a longer period due to their non-biodegradability. The pervasive and bio-accumulative behavior of POPs makes them highly toxic to the environmental species including plants, animals, and humans. The present review specifies the POP along with their fate, persistence, occurrence, and risk analysis towards humans. The different biological POPs degradation methods, especially the microbial degradation using bacteria, fungi, algae, and actinomycetes, and their mechanisms were described. Moreover, the source, transport of POPs to the environmental sources, and the toxic nature of POPs were discussed in detail. Agricultural and industrial activities are distinguished as the primary source of these toxic compounds, which are delivered to air, soil, and water, affecting on the social and economic advancement of society at a worldwide scale. This review also demonstrated the microbial degradation of POPs and outlines the potential for an eco-accommodating and cost-effective approach for the biological remediation of POPs using microbes. The direction for future research in eliminating POPs from the environmental sources through various microbial processes was emphasized.

Original languageEnglish
Article number154808
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jul 2022


  • Agricultural practices
  • Bioaccumulation
  • Biodegradation
  • Persistent organic pollutants (POPs)
  • Toxic pollutants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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