Mutagenicity and oestrogenicity of raw water and drinking water in an industrialised city in the Yangtze River Delta

Public concern was aroused by frequently reported water pollution incidents in Taihu Lake and the Yangtze River. The pollution also caught and sustained the attention of the scientific community. From 2010 to 2016, raw water and drinking water samples were continually collected at Waterworks A and B (Taihu Lake) and Waterworks C (Yangtze River). The non-volatile organic pollutants in the water samples were extracted by solid phase extraction. Ames tests and yeast estrogen screen (YES) assays were conducted to evaluate the respective mutagenic and oestrogenic effects. Water samples from the Yangtze River-based Waterworks C possessed higher mutagenicity than those from Taihu Lake-based Waterworks A (P?0.001) and Waterworks B (P = 0.026). Water treatment enhanced the direct mutagenicity (P = 0.022), and weakened the oestrogenicity of the raw water (P?0.001) with a median removal rate of 100%. In fact, very few of the finished samples showed estrogenic activity. Raw water samples from Waterworks A showed weaker oestrogenicity than those from Waterworks B (P = 0.034) and Waterworks C (P = 0.006). In summary, mutagenic effects in drinking water and oestrogenic effects in raw water merited sustained attention. The Yangtze River was more seriously polluted by mutagenic and oestrogenic chemicals than Taihu Lake was.

Authors: Xiao S, Lv X, Zeng Y, Jin T, Luo L, Zhang B, Zhang G, Wang Y, Feng L, Zhu Y, Tang F. ; Full Source: Chemosphere. 2017 Jul 14; 185:647-655. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2017.07.066. [Epub ahead of print]