Tag Archives: disinfection byproducts

Total THM long-term exposure not related to female breast cancer, Spain

Font-Ribera L, Gràcia-Lavedan E, Aragonés N, Pérez-Gómez B, Pollán M, Amiano P, Jiménez-Zabala A, Castaño-Vinyals G, Roca-Barceló A, Ardanaz E, Burgui R, Molina AJ, Fernández-Villa T, Gómez-Acebo I, Dierssen-Sotos T, Moreno V, Fernandez-Tardon G, Peiró R, Kogevinas M, Villanueva CM. Long-term exposure to trihalomethanes in drinking water and breast cancer in the Spanish multicase-control study on cancer (MCC-SPAIN). Environment international. 2017 Dec 28;112:227-234. doi: 10.1016/j.envint.2017.12.031.

BACKGROUND: Exposure to trihalomethanes (THMs) in drinking water has consistently been associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer, but evidence on other cancers including the breast is very limited.

OBJECTIVES: We assessed long-term exposure to THMs to evaluate the association with female breast cancer (BC) risk.

METHODS: A multi case-control study was conducted in Spain from 2008 to 2013. We included 1003 incident BC cases (women 20-85 years old) recruited from 14 hospitals and 1458 population controls. Subjects were interviewed to ascertain residential histories and major recognized risk factors for BC. Mean residential levels of chloroform, brominated THMs (Br-THMs) and the sum of both as total THM (TTHMs) during the adult-lifetime were calculated.

RESULTS: Mean adult-lifetime residential levels ranged from 0.8 to 145.7μg/L for TTHM (median=30.8), from 0.2 to 62.4μg/L for chloroform (median=19.7) and from 0.3 to 126.0μg/L for Br-THMs (median=9.7). Adult-lifetime residential chloroform was associated with BC (adjusted OR=1.47; 95%CI=1.05, 2.06 for the highest (>24μg/L) vs. lowest (<8μg/L) quartile; p-trend=0.024). No association was detected for residential Br-THMs (OR=0.91; 95%CI=0.68, 1.23 for >31μg/L vs. <6μg/L) or TTHMs (OR=1.14; 95%CI=0.83, 1.57 for >48μg/L vs. <22μg/L).

CONCLUSIONS: At common levels in Europe, long-term residential total THMs were not related to female breast cancer. A moderate association with chloroform was suggested at the highest exposure category. This large epidemiological study with extensive exposure assessment overcomes several limitations of previous studies but further studies are needed to confirm these results.

THMs and HAAs in Small Water Systems, Canada

Chowdhury S. Occurrences and changes of disinfection by-products in small water supply systems. Environ Monit Assess. 2017 Dec 20;190(1):32. doi: 10.1007/s10661-017-6410-8.

The small water supply systems (WSSs) often report high concentrations of disinfection by-products (DBPs) in drinking water. In this study, occurrences of trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs) in Newfoundland and Labrador (NL), Canada, were investigated from 441 WSSs for a period of 18 years (1999-2016). The WSSs were divided into groundwater (GWP) and surface water (SWP) systems, which were further classified into eight sub-groups (P1-P8) based on the population served (≤ 100; 101-250; 251-500; 501-1000; 1001-3000; 3001-5000; 5001-10,000; and 10,000+, respectively). The DBPs with probable and possible carcinogenic forms were estimated. Overall, 31.1% of WSSs were GWP, in which averages of THMs and HAAs were 32.2 and 27.7 μg/L, respectively, while the SWP had averages of THMs and HAAs of 97.6 and 129.2 μg/L, respectively. The very small WSSs (P1-P3) of GWP had averages of THMs and HAAs in the ranges of 29.1-43.5 and 15.8-64.3 μg/L, respectively. The P1-P3 of SWP had averages of THMs and HAAs in the ranges of 92.6-112.8 and 108.0-154.0 μg/L, respectively, which often exceeded the Canadian guideline limits. If the samples represented the populations homogenously, the total populations exposed to THMs or HAA5 above the guideline values would be in the range of 132.08-181.38 in thousands (30.3-41.6% of total populations). The probable and possible carcinogenic forms of THMs in GWP and SWP were in the ranges of 4.8-48.8 and 4.4-7.0% of THMs, respectively. In HAAs, carcinogenic forms were in the ranges of 82.6-98.4 and 97.6-98.7%, respectively. The findings indicated that the SWP might need further attention to better protect human health.

Iodo-Trihalomethanes in Canadian Drinking Water

Tugulea AM, Aranda-Rodriguez R, Bérubé D, Giddings M, Lemieux F, Hnatiw J, Dabeka L, Breton F. The influence of precursors and treatment process on the formation of Iodo-THMs in Canadian drinking water. Water Res. 2017 Nov 27;130:215-223. doi: 10.1016/j.watres.2017.11.055.

The National Survey of Disinfection By-Products and Selected Emerging Contaminants investigated the formation of various disinfection by-products and contaminants in 65 water treatment systems (WTSs) across Canada. Results for six iodo-trihalomethanes (iodo-THMs) are reported in this paper. The participating water treatment systems included large, medium and small systems using water sources and treatment processes which were representative of Canadian drinking water. Five water samples (source water, treated water and three water samples along the distribution system) were collected from each treatment system, both under winter and summer conditions. Samples were stabilized, shipped cold and analysed for six iodo-THMs (dichloroiodomethane-DCIM; dibromoiodomethane-DBIM; bromochloroiodomethane-BCIM; chlorodiiodomethane-CDIM; bromodiiodomethane-BDIM and triiodomethane or iodoform-TIM), using a SPME-GC-ECD method developed in our laboratory (MDLs from 0.02 μg/L for iodoform to 0.06 μg/L for bromodiiodomethane). Concentrations of relevant precursors like dissolved organic carbon (DOC), bromide, iodide and total iodine, as well as other water quality parameters, were also determined. Detailed information about the treatment process used at each location was recorded using a questionnaire. The survey showed that one or more iodo-THMs were detected at 31 out of 64 water treatment systems (WTSs) under winter conditions and in 46 out of 64 WTSs under summer conditions (analytical results from one site were excluded due to sampling challenges). Total iodo-THM concentrations measured during this survey ranged from 0.02 μg/L to 21.66 μg/L. The highest total iodo-THM concentration was measured in WTS 63 where all six iodo-THMs were detected and iodoform was present in the highest concentration. The highest iodo-THM formation was found to occur in treatment systems where water sources had naturally occurring ammonium as well as high bromide, high iodide and/or total iodine concentrations. In two such water systems the total concentration of iodo-THMs exceeded the concentration of regulated THMs.

Validation Need for QSAR DBP Toxicity Models

Qin L, Zhang X, Chen Y, Mo L, Zeng H, Liang Y. Predictive QSAR Models for the Toxicity of Disinfection Byproducts. Molecules 2017 Oct 9;22(10). pii: E1671. doi: 10.3390/molecules22101671

Several hundred disinfection byproducts (DBPs) in drinking water have been identified, and are known to have potentially adverse health effects. There are toxicological data gaps for most DBPs, and the predictive method may provide an effective way to address this. The development of an in-silico model of toxicology endpoints of DBPs is rarely studied. The main aim of the present study is to develop predictive quantitative structure-activity relationship (QSAR) models for the reactive toxicities of 50 DBPs in the five bioassays of X-Microtox, GSH+, GSH-, DNA+ and DNA-. All-subset regression was used to select the optimal descriptors, and multiple linear-regression models were built. The developed QSAR models for five endpoints satisfied the internal and external validation criteria: coefficient of determination (R²) > 0.7, explained variance in leave-one-out prediction (Q²LOO) and in leave-many-out prediction (Q²LMO) > 0.6, variance explained in external prediction (Q²F1Q²F2, and Q²F3) > 0.7, and concordance correlation coefficient (CCC) > 0.85. The application domains and the meaning of the selective descriptors for the QSAR models were discussed. The obtained QSAR models can be used in predicting the toxicities of the 50 DBPs.

Acrylamide as a Disinfection Byproduct Precursor

Wang AQ, Lin YL, Xu B, Hu CY, Zhang MS, Xia SJ, Zhang TY, Chu WH, Gao NY. Degradation of acrylamide during chlorination as a precursor of haloacetonitriles and haloacetamides. The Science of the total environment. 2017 Sep 26;615:38-46. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2017.09.141.

Acrylamide is a monomer of polyacrylamide, which is widely used in the water treatment process as a flocculant. The degradation kinetics and formation of disinfection by-products (DBPs) during acrylamide chlorination were investigated in this study. The reaction between chlorine and acrylamide followed a pseudo-first-order kinetics. A kinetic model regarding acrylamide chlorination was established and the rate constants of each predominant elementary reaction (i.e., the base-catalyzed reaction of acrylamide with ClOas well as the reactions of acrylamide with HOCl and ClO) were calculated as 7.89×107M-2h-1, 7.72×101M-1h-1, and 1.65×103M-1h-1, respectively. The presence of Br in water led to the formation of HOBr and accelerated the rate of acrylamide degradation by chlorine. The reaction rate constant of acrylamide with HOBr was calculated as 1.33×103M-1h-1. The degradation pathways of acrylamide chlorination were proposed according to the intermediates identified using ultra-performance liquid chromatography and electrospray ionization-quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (UPLC-Q-TOF/MS). Five chlorinated DBPs including chloroform (CF), dichloroacetonitrile (DCAN), trichloroacetonitrile (TCAN), dichloroacetamide (DCAcAm), and trichloroacetamide (TCAcAm) were identified during acrylamide chlorination. The formation of CF, DCAN, DCAcAm, and TCAcAm kept increasing, while that of TCAN increased and then decreased with increasing reaction time. As the chlorine dosage increased from 0.75 to 4.5mM, DCAN became the dominant DBP. Large amounts of CF, DCAN, and TCAN were formed at basic pHs. The hydrolysis of DCAN and TCAN led to the formation of DCAcAm and TCAcAm, respectively. The results of this study elucidated that acrylamide can be a precursor for the formation of haloacetonitriles (HANs) and haloacetamides (HAcAms) during drinking water treatment.

Exposure to Disinfection Byproducts can occur via Vegetables

Coroneo V, Carraro V, Marras B, Marrucci A, Succa S, Meloni B, Pinna A, Angioni A, Sanna A, Schintu M. PRESENCE OF TRIHALOMETHANES IN READY-TO-EAT VEGETABLES DISINFECTED WITH CHLORINE. Food additives and contaminants. Part A, Chemistry, analysis, control, exposure and risk assessment. Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2017 Sep 21. doi: 10.1080/19440049.2017.1382723.

Trihalomethanes (THMs) – CHCl3, CHCl2Br, CHClBr2 and CHBr3 – are drinking water disinfection by-products (DBPs). These compounds can also be absorbed by different types of foods, including ready-to-eat (RTE) fresh vegetables. The potential absorption of THMs during washing of RTE vegetables could pose a potential risk to consumers’ health. The concentration of THMs in the water used in the manufacturing process of these products shall not exceed the limit of 100 or 80 µgL-1 according to European Union (EU) and United States legislation respectively. By contrast, there is little information about the presence of such compounds in the final product. This study evaluated the concentration of THMs in different types of RTE vegetables (carrots, iceberg lettuce, lettuce, mixed salad, parsley, parsley and garlic, rocket salad, valerian) after washing with chlorinated water. In the 115 samples analyzed, the average value of total THMs was equal to 76.7 ng g-1. Chloroform was the THM present in the largest percentage in all the RTE vegetables. These results show that the process of washing RTE vegetables should be optimized in order to reduce the risk for consumers associated with the presence of DBPs.

TOX in Urine as an Exposure Surrogate, China

Y Kimura S, Zheng W, N Hipp T, M Allen J, D Richardson S. Total organic halogen (TOX) in human urine: A halogen-specific method for human exposure studies. Journal of environmental sciences (China). 2017 Aug;58:285-295. doi: 10.1016/j.jes.2017.04.008.

Disinfection by-products (DBPs) are a complex mixture of compounds unintentionally formed as a result of disinfection processes used to treat drinking water. Effects of long-term exposure to DBPs are mostly unknown and were the subject of recent epidemiological studies. However, most bioanalytical methods focus on a select few DBPs. In this study, a new comprehensive bioanalytical method has been developed that can quantify mixtures of organic halogenated compounds, including DBPs, in human urine as total organic chlorine (TOCl), total organic bromine (TOBr), and total organic iodine (TOI). The optimized method consists of urine dilution, adsorption to activated carbon, pyrolysis of activated carbon, absorption of gases in an aqueous solution, and halide analysis with ion chromatography and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Spike recoveries for TOCl, TOBr, and TOI measurements ranged between 78% and 99%. Average TOCl, TOBr, and TOI concentrations in five urine samples from volunteers who consumed tap water were 1850, 82, and 21.0μg/L as X, respectively. Volunteers who consumed spring water (control) had TOCl, TOBr, and TOI average concentrations in urine of 1090, 88, and 10.3μg/L as X, respectively. TOCl and TOI in the urine samples from tap water consumers were higher than the control. However, TOBr was slightly lower in tap water urine samples compared to mineral water urine samples, indicating other sources of environmental exposure other than drinking water. A larger sample population that consumes tap water from different cities and mineral water is needed to determine TOCl, TOBr, and TOI exposure from drinking water.