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Effects of drinking water monochloramine on lipid and thyroid metabolism in healthy men.

The purpose of this study was to determine whether a 4-week consumption of 1.5L per day of drinking water containing monochloramine at a concentration of 2 ppm (ppm = mg/L) or 15 ppm under controlled conditions would alter parameters of lipid or thyroid metabolism in healthy men. Forty-eight men completed an 8-week protocol during which diet (600 mg cholesterol per day, 40% calories as fat) and other factors known to affect lipid metabolism were controlled. During the first 4 weeks of the protocol, all subjects consumed distilled water. During the second 4 weeks, one-third of the subjects were assigned randomly to drink 1.5 L per day of water containing 2 ppm of monochloramine, to drink 1.5 L per day of water containing 15 ppm monochloramine, or to continue drinking distilled water. Four blood samples were collected from each subject at the end of each 4-week study period. Subjects drinking monochloramine at a concentration of 2 ppm showed no significant changes in total cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, apolipoproteins A1, A2, or B when compared to the distilled water group. Parameters of thyroid function also were unchanged by exposure to monochloramine at this concentration. However, subjects drinking monochloramine at a concentration of 15 ppm experienced an increase in the level of apolipoprotein B. Other parameters of lipid and thyroid metabolism did not change. We conclude that consumption of drinking water containing 2 ppm of monochloramine does not alter parameters of lipid and thyroid metabolism in healthy men. Consumption of water containing 15 ppm monochloramine may be associated with increased levels of plasma apolipoprotein B.