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Int J Rad Appl Instrum D. 1992 Jan;20(1):227-32.

Radiobiological studies with the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Genetic and developmental effects of high LET radiation.

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Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena 91109.


The biological effects of heavy charged particle (HZE) radiation are of particular interest to travellers and planners for long-duration space flights where exposure levels represent a potential health hazard. The unique feature of HZE radiation is the structured pattern of its energy deposition in targets. There are many consequences of this feature to biological endpoints when compared with effects of ionizing photons. Dose vs response and dose-rate kinetics may be modified, DNA and cellular repair systems may be altered in their abilities to cope with damage, and the qualitative features of damage may be unique for different ions. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans is being used to address these and related questions associated with exposure to radiation. HZE-induced mutation, chromosome aberration, cell inactivation and altered organogenesis are discussed along with plans for radiobiological experiments in space.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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