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Radiat Res. 2009 Mar;171(3):349-59. doi: 10.1667/RR1358.1.

Analysis of the spatial distribution of free radicals in ammonium tartrate by pulse EPR techniques.

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  • 1Dipartimento di Fisica e Tecnologie Relative Italy and Unità CNISM, Palermo, Italy;

Abstract

Using pulse electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) on a series of l(+)-ammonium tartrate (AT) dosimeters exposed to radiations with different linear energy transfer (LET), we assessed the ability of pulse EPR spectroscopy to discriminate the quality of various radiation beams such as (60)Co gamma-ray photons, protons and thermal neutrons at various doses by analyzing the local radical distributions produced by the different beams. We performed two types of pulse EPR investigations: two-pulse electron spin echo decay obtained by varying the microwave power, and a double electron-electron resonance (DEER) study. Both methods provide information about the dipolar interactions among the free radicals and about their spatial distributions. The first method provided information on the instantaneous diffusion and hence the microscopic concentration of the radicals that is compared with the macroscopic one obtained by CW-EPR. The DEER spectra yielded the distributions of distances between pairs of radicals two to five crystal cells apart produced by the same radiation event, a result reported here for the first time. The inter-radical distributions given by the DEER results have been simulated by modeling the radical distributions according to the details of the matter-radiation interactions for the various beams. The results of both types of pulse experiments are strongly dependent on the radiation quality. This was also observed for samples giving indistinguishable CW-EPR spectral profiles. We conclude that the pulse EPR measurements can be valuable tools for distinguishing the LET of the radiation beams, an important parameter for radiobiological considerations.

PMID:
19267562
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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