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Biophys J. 1963 Jan; 3(1): 11–33.
PMCID: PMC1366421

Variations in Several Responses of HeLa Cells to X-Irradiation during the Division Cycle


Several responses of synchronized populations of HeLa S3 cells were measured after irradiation with 220 kev x-rays at selected times during the division cycle. (1) Survival (colony-forming ability) is maximal when cells are irradiated in the early post-mitotic (G1) and the pre-mitotic (G2) phases of the cycle, and minimal in the mitotic (M) and late G1 or early DNA synthetic (S) phases. (2) Markedly different growth patterns result from irradiation in different phases: (a) Prolongation of interphase (division delay) is minimal when cells are irradiated early in G1 and rises progressively through the remainder of the cycle. (b) Cells irradiated while in mitosis are not delayed in that division, but the succeeding division is delayed. (c) Persistence of cells as metabolizing entities does not depend on the phase of the division cycle in which they are irradiated. (3) Characteristic perturbations of the normal DNA synthetic cycle occur: (a) Cells irradiated in M suffer a small delay in the onset of S, a slight prolongation of S, and a slight depression in the rate of DNA synthesis; the major delay occurs in G2. (b) Cells irradiated in G1 show no delay in the onset of S, and essentially no alteration in the duration or rate of DNA synthesis; G2 delay is minimal. (c) Cells irradiated in S suffer an appreciable S prolongation and a decreased rate of DNA synthesis; G2 delay is shorter than S delay.

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Selected References

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