Arsenic species and selected metals in human urine: validation of HPLC/ICPMS and ICPMS procedures for a long-term population-based epidemiological study

Anal Methods. 2012;4(2):406-413. doi: 10.1039/C2AY05638K. Epub 2012 Jan 20.


Exposure to high inorganic arsenic concentrations in drinking water has been related to detrimental health effects, including cancers and possibly cardiovascular disease, in many epidemiological studies. Recent studies suggest that arsenic might elicit some of its toxic effects also at lower concentrations. The Strong Heart Study, a large epidemiological study of cardiovascular disease in American Indian communities, collected urine samples and performed medical examinations on 4,549 participants over a 10-year period beginning in 1989. We used anion-exchange HPLC/ICPMS to determine concentrations of arsenic species (methylarsonate, dimethylarsinate and arsenate) in 5,095 urine samples from the Strong Heart Study. We repeated the chromatography on a portion of the urine sample that had been oxidised, by addition of H(2)O(2), to provide additional information on the presence of As(III) species and thio-arsenicals, and by difference, of arsenobetaine and other non-retained cations. Total concentrations for As, Cd, Mo, Pb, Sb, Se, U, W, and Zn were also determined in the urine samples by ICPMS. The dataset will be used to evaluate the relationships between the concentrations of urinary arsenic species and selected metals with various cardiometabolic health endpoints. We present and discuss the analytical protocol put in place to produce this large and valuable dataset.