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Radiat Environ Biophys. 2011 Aug;50(3):383-7. doi: 10.1007/s00411-011-0372-y. Epub 2011 Jun 9.

Cytogenetic effects induced by accelerated carbon ions with shielding.

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  • 1Institute of Modern Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou, China. wangzz@impcas.ac.cn


Our work aims to understand the effects of shielding on the induction of biological damage by heavy charged particles and to compare the shielding effects of different materials at the same LET from two aspects: the biological effectiveness including or not including secondary particles emitted at large angles and the biological effectiveness at different angles with respect to the beam direction. We designed and conducted biological experiments to determine the biological effectiveness of 200 MeV/u carbon ions after traversing different shielding materials (Lucite and aluminium). Whole blood samples, which were either attached to the shielding material (48 mm Lucite or 29 mm aluminium)or positioned at 300 cm away from it at different angles with respect to the beam axis, were exposed to carbon ion beams. For comparison, whole blood samples were exposed directly to 200 MeV/u carbon ions. Chromosomal aberrations in lymphocytes were scored. The results indicated that the biological effectiveness per unit dose was not significantly changed by 48 mm Lucite or 29 mm aluminium, and no significant differences were observed in lymphocytes attached to the target and in lymphocytes positioned at a distance of 300 cm away from the target, at 0ยบ angle of the beam axis. However, when plotted as a function of the number of ions hitting the shielding target, the curves are separated and the shield increases the effectiveness per unit ion. The frequency of chromosomal aberrations at tilted angles behind 29 mm Al and 48 mm Lucite was almost the same. These lesions were considered to be caused by secondary particles due to the passage of particles through the shielding materials.

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