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

Chemical and biological characterization of newly discovered iodoacid drinking water disinfection byproducts.

Iodoacid drinking water disinfection byproducts (DBPs) were recently uncovered in drinking water samples from source water with a high bromide/iodide concentration that was disinfected with chloramines. The purpose of this paper is to report the analytical chemical identification of iodoacetic acid (IA) and other iodoacids in drinking water samples, to address the cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of IA in Salmonella typhimurium and mammalian cells, and to report a structure-function analysis of IA with its chlorinated and brominated monohalogenated analogues. The iodoacid DBPs were identified as iodoacetic acid, bromoiodoacetic acid, (Z)- and (E)-3-bromo-3-iodopropenoic acid, and (E)-2-iodo-3-methylbutenedioic acid. IA represents a new class (iodoacid DBPs) of highly toxic drinking water contaminants. The cytotoxicity of IA in S. typhimurium was 2.9x and 53.5x higher than bromoacetic acid (BA) and chloroacetic acid (CA), respectively. A similar trend was found with cytotoxicity in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells; IA was 3.2x and 287.5x more potent than BA and CA, respectively. This rank order was also expressed in its genotoxicity with IA being 2.6x and 523.3x more mutagenic in S. typhimurium strain TA100 than BA and CA, respectively. IA was 2.0x more genotoxic than BA and 47.2x more genotoxic than CA in CHO cells. The rank order of the toxicity of these monohalogenated acetic acids is correlated with the electrophilic reactivity of the DBPs. IA is the most toxic and genotoxic DBP in mammalian cells reported in the literature. These data suggest that chloraminated drinking waters that have high bromide and iodide source waters may contain these iodoacids and most likely other iodo-DBPs. Ultimately, it will be important to know the levels at which these iodoacids occur in drinking water in order to assess the potential for adverse environmental and human health risks.[1]


  1. Chemical and biological characterization of newly discovered iodoacid drinking water disinfection byproducts. Plewa, M.J., Wagner, E.D., Richardson, S.D., Thruston, A.D., Woo, Y.T., McKague, A.B. Environ. Sci. Technol. (2004) [Pubmed]
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