Recent in vitro studies have shown that chromium (III) compounds such as chromium picolinate, a popular dietary supplement among people trying to lose weight, produce chromosome damage. We monitored levels of DNA damage in a chromium picolinate supplement trial by measuring antibodies titers to an oxidized DNA base, 5-hydroxymethyl-2'-deoxyuridine (HMdU), by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. Ten obese volunteer women completed a 8-week course of 400 micrograms chromium picolinate per day. In either absolute titers or percent of the baseline value, there were no changes in antibody titers at 4 or 8 weeks. The titers were very stable within individuals and those of one individual rarely crossed over others, which was reflected in an intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.99 (95% confidence interval: 0.96-1.00). There were no effects on glucose and lipid metabolism in this period. The results of this trial suggest that chromium (III) picolinate in a dose typically used for nutrient supplementation dose not increase oxidative DNA damage, as measured by anti-HMdU antibody levels.