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Mutat Res. 1990 Jul;239(1):29-80.

The in vivo micronucleus assay in mammalian bone marrow and peripheral blood. A report of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Gene-Tox Program.

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Biomedical and Environmental Information Analysis Section, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, TN 37831-6050.


The protocol recommended for the micronucleus assay in mammalian bone marrow has been revised and simplified. The number of sample times has been reduced to one or two, depending upon the dosing protocol. The minimum number of cells to be scored per treatment group has been increased to 20,000 to increase the ability of the assay to detect a doubling of the control micronucleus frequency. Use of both male and female animals is recommended. Scoring of micronuclei in polychromatic erythrocytes of peripheral blood is included as a variation of the bone marrow assay. Published data on chemicals tested by the micronucleus assay have been reviewed and are summarized.

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