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Forskningsartikel - Refereegranskat, 2023

Low concentrations of perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) in municipal drinking water associated with serum PFAA concentrations in Swedish adolescents

Nystrom-kandola, Jennifer; Ahrens, Lutz; Glynn, Anders; Johanson, Gunnar; Benskin, Jonathan P.; Gyllenhammar, Irina; Lignell, Sanna; Vogs, Carolina


While highly contaminated drinking water (DW) is a major source of exposure to perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs), the contribution of low-level contaminated DW (i.e. < 10 ng/L of individual PFAAs) to PFAA body burdens has rarely been studied. To address this knowledge gap, we evaluated the association between concentrations of perflurooctanoic acid (PFOA), perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA), perfluorohexane sulfonic acid (PFHxS) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), and their sum (& sum;(4)PFAAs) in DW and serum in Swedish adolescents using weighted least squares regression. We paired serum PFAA concentrations in adolescents (age 10-21 years, n = 790) from the dietary survey Riksmaten Adolescents 2016-17 (RMA) with mean PFAA concentrations in water samples collected in 2018 from waterworks (n = 45) supplying DW to the participant residential and school addresses. The median concentrations of individual PFAAs in DW were < 1 ng/L. Median concentrations of PFNA and PFHxS in serum were < 1 ng/g, while those of PFOA and PFOS were 1-2 ng/g. Significant positive associations between PFAA concentrations in DW and serum were found for all four PFAAs and & sum;(4)PFAAs, with estimated serum/DW concentration ratios ranging from 210 (PFOA) to 670 (PFHxS), taking exposure from sources other than DW (background) into consideration. The mean concentrations of PFHxS and & sum;(4)PFAA in DW that would likely cause substantially elevated serum concentrations above background variation were estimated to 0.9 ng/L and 2.4 ng/L, respectively. The European Food Safety Authority has determined a health concern concentration of 6.9 ng & sum;(4)PFAAs/mL serum. This level was to a large degree exceeded by RMA participants with DW & sum;(4)PFAA concentrations above the maximum limits implemented in Denmark (2 ng & sum;(4)PFAAs/L) and Sweden (4 ng & sum;(4)PFAAs/L) than by RMA participants with DW concentrations below the maximum limits. In conclusion, PFAA exposure from low-level contaminated DW must be considered in risk assessment for adolescents.


PFAS; Exposure; Bioaccumulation; Risk assessment; Human biomonitoring; Tap water

Publicerad i

Environment International
2023, Volym: 180, artikelnummer: 108166