EPR study of mouse tissues in search for adaptive responses to low level whole-body X-irradiation

D A Svistuneko, G Z Ju, J Wei, J S Zhang, S Z Liu

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8 Citations (Scopus)


Effect of a low dose of whole-body X-irradiation (D1 = 0.075 Gy) of mice on some biochemical changes induced in the spleen and thymus by a subsequent challenge dose (D2 = 1.5 Gy) was studied by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR). Kunming and SHK mice were used. Concentration of ribonucleotide reductase (RR) in the spleen and thymus of unirradiated Kunming mice was 0.70 and 0.46 microM respectively, and of unirradiated SKH mice--0.37 and 0.21 microM respectively (systematic error 45%). For mice exposed only to the low dose (D1 group), a stimulating effect on RR activity in spleen and thymus was found, while in mice subjected only to the D2 dose (D2 group) activity of the enzyme in the organs decreased considerably 18 h after irradiation. The group of mice irradiated with D1 and D2 doses, given at a 6-h interval (D1 plus D2 group), showed a RR activity in the organs lower than D1 and higher than D2 groups. This finding indicates that there exists an adaptation-like response to a low-dose whole-body irradiation in murine spleen and thymus. This low 'inductive' dose makes the organs' RR less susceptible to inhibition induced by a subsequent challenge dose. Preliminary results showed that the same kind of response is probably a characteristic of the RR content of splenocytes as well as of the rate of thymidine incorporation into splenocytes. 5-Thyml radicals of DNA (TH radicals) induced in whole tissues by gamma-irradiation in vitro at 77 K were also studied. Radiochemical yield of these radicals (4.0 and 5.3 nmol j-1), for spleen and thymus respectively of unirradiated Kunming mice, and 2.3 and 2.6 nmol J-1, for spleen and thymus respectively of unirradiated SHK mice (systematic error 30%), decreased significantly in both organs upon D2 irradiation. This decrease, however, was the consequence of DNA content diminishing upon D2 irradiation rather than change of DNA radiosensitivity: the beta value of TH radicals, i.e. yield of radicals per unit mass of DNA in each organ was equal for the mice from all D1, D1 plus D2, D2 and control groups. The beta values of TH radicals in mouse spleen and thymus were of the same order of magnitude compared with the yield of the single-strand breaks of DNA measured previously in rat organs just after whole-body irradiation, i.e. about 1 x 10(2) (Gy x 10(12) Da)-1.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-36
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1992


  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Animals
  • Cobalt Radioisotopes
  • Electron Spin Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Ribonucleotide Reductases
  • Spleen
  • Thymus Gland
  • Whole-Body Irradiation


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