ANDRA MARIA COCOLOS, NICOLETA DUMITRU, EUGENIA NEDELTCHEVA PETROVA, ION COCOLOS, MIRELA TIGLIS, RAZVAN FLORIN ION DRAGOMIRESCU, MARIA OLARU, ALINA DUMITRU, ADINA MARIANA GHEMIGIAN ENDOCRINE DISRUPTING CHEMICALS - THE X FACTOR IN DIFFERENT PATHOLOGIES Endocrine disruptors (ED) are exogenous agents that interfere with the normal function of the endocrine system and they are considered environmental chemicals with estrogen-like and/or anti-androgenic activity with important impact on the reproductive axis. They act via nuclear receptors, non-nuclear steroid receptors, nonsteroidal receptors, orphan receptors, and different enzyme pathways involved in the biosynthesis and/or metabolism of steroids. The molecules identified as ED and sources of exposure are diverse and vary worldwide, including from natural chemicals found in human and animal food (the main source) up to synthetic chemicals, such as as solvents, plasticizers, pesticides, fungicides, pharmaceuticals etc. ED are incriminated in the occurrence of malignant tumors, birth defects, attention deficit disorders, cognitive impairment, brain development, deformations of the body (including limbs), disturbance of sexual development, menstrual irregularity, precocious puberty, feminizing or masculinizing effects, abortion, not least obesity and decreased fertility. The principles of action are still studied and controversial, therefore, it is difficult to determine the minimum level at which adverse effect occurs and further studies are required.