Mutagenicity Assessment of Drinking Water in Combination with Flavored Black Tea Bags: a Cross Sectional Study in Tehran


Diseases related to water impurities may present as major public health burdens. The present study aimed to assess the mutagenicity of drinking water from different zones of Tehran, and evaluate possible health risks through making tea with tea bags, by Ames mutagenicity test using TA 100, TA 98 and YG1029 strains. For this purpose, 450 water samples were collected over the period of July to December 2014 from 5 different zones of Tehran. Except for one sample, no mutagenic potential was detected during these two seasons and the MI scores were almost normal (≤1-1.6) in TA 100, TA 98 and YG1029 strains. Although no mutagenic effects were considered in TA 98 and TA 100 in the test samples of our three evaluated tea bag brands, one sample from a local company showed mutagenic effects in the YG1029 strain (MI=1.7-1.9 and 2) after prolonged (10-15 min.) steeping. Despite the mild mutagenic effect discovered for one of the brand, this cross sectional study showed relative safety of water samples and black tea bags in Tehran. According to the sensitivity of YG1029 to the mutagenic potential of water and black tea, even without metabolic activation by s9 fraction, this metabolizer strain could be considered as sensitive and applicable to food samples for quantitative analysis of mutagens.