Blood Pressure Associated with Arsenic Methylation and Arsenic Metabolism Caused by Chronic Exposure to Arsenic in Tube Well Water

Biomed Environ Sci. 2017 May;30(5):334-342. doi: 10.3967/bes2017.044.


Objective: The effects of arsenic exposure from drinking water, arsenic metabolism, and arsenic methylation on blood pressure (BP) were observed in this study.

Methods: The BP and arsenic species of 560 participants were determined. Logistic regression analysis was applied to estimate the odds ratios of BP associated with arsenic metabolites and arsenic methylation capability.

Results: BP was positively associated with cumulative arsenic exposure (CAE). Subjects with abnormal diastolic blood pressure (DBP), systolic blood pressure (SBP), and pulse pressure (PP) usually had higher urinary iAs (inorganic arsenic), MMA (monomethylated arsenic), DMA (dimethylated arsenic), and TAs (total arsenic) than subjects with normal DBP, SBP, and PP. The iAs%, MMA%, and DMA% differed slightly between subjects with abnormal BP and those with normal BP. The PMI and SMI were slightly higher in subjects with abnormal PP than in those with normal PP.

Conclusion: Our findings suggest that higher CAE may elevate BP. Males may have a higher risk of abnormal DBP, whereas females have a higher risk of abnormal SBP and PP. Higher urinary iAs may increase the risk of abnormal BP. Lower PMI may elevate the BP. However, higher SMI may increase the DBP and SBP, and lower SMI may elevate the PP.

Keywords: Arsenic; Arsenic metabolism; Arsenic methylation; Blood pressure; Drinking water.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Arsenic / analysis
  • Arsenic / metabolism
  • Arsenic / toxicity*
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects*
  • China
  • Drinking Water / analysis
  • Drinking Water / chemistry*
  • Environmental Exposure*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Methylation / drug effects*
  • Middle Aged
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / analysis
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / toxicity*
  • Young Adult


  • Drinking Water
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical
  • Arsenic