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Environmental fate & pathways

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Available test data for testosterone indicate that the substance is readily biodegradable.


Tests with sewage sludge, from waste water treatment plants, indicate that testosterone is rapidly degraded. Laboratory mineralization assays using14C labelled estrogens and testosterone were performed with biosolids from four municipal treatment plants and one industrial system.  In these samples, 64.1% (±5.5) of the14C-Testosterone was mineralized to14CO2after 24 hrs. In waste water treatment plant #3, mineralization of testosterone was 68% percent14C-CO2after 24 hrs. Mineralization rates after 72 hrs were essentially the same. The test was run by methods similar to OECD test guidelines for ready biodegradability and therefore testosterone is classified as readily biodegradable.


In a separate study, conducted to examine the persistence and fate of testosterone in soils, incubation experiments were conducted under aerobic and anaerobic conditions using [14C]-radiolabeled testosterone. The results indicated that 63% of testosterone could be mineralized to14CO2in native soils under aerobic conditions.