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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)
 
 
 

Ascorbic acid reduction of active chlorine prior to determining Ames mutagenicity of chlorinated natural organic matter (NOM).

Many potable water disinfection byproducts (DBPs) that result from the reaction of natural organic matter (NOM) with oxidizing chlorine are known or suspected to be carcinogenic and mutagenic. The Ames assay is routinely used to assess an overall level of mutagenicity for all compounds in samples from potable water supplies or laboratory studies of DBP formation. Reduction of oxidizing disinfectants is required since these compounds can kill the bacteria or react with the agar, producing chlorinated byproducts. When mutagens are collected by passing potable water through adsorbing resins, active chlorine compounds react with the resin, producing undesirable mutagenic artifacts. The bioanalytical and chemoanalytical needs of drinking water DBP studies required a suitable reductant. Many of the candidate compounds failed to meet those needs, including 2,4-hexadienoic (sorbic) acid, 2,4-pentanedione (acetylacetone), 2-butenoic (crotonic) acid, 2-butenedioic (maleic and fumaric) acids and buten-2-ol (crotyl alcohol). Candidates were rejected if they (1) reacted too slowly with active chlorine, (2) formed mutagenic byproducts, or (3) interfered in the quantitation of known chlorination DBPs. L-Ascorbic acid reacts rapidly and stoichiometrically with active chlorine and has limited interactions with halogenated DBPs. In this work, we found no interference from L-ascorbic acid or its oxidation product (dehydroascorbic acid) in mutagenicity assays of chlorinated NOM using Salmonella typhimurium TA100, with or without metabolic activation (S9). This was demonstrated for both aqueous solutions of chlorinated NOM and concentrates derived from the involatile, ether-extractable chlorinated byproducts of those solutions.[1]

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