X-irradiation induces cell death in fetal fibroblasts

Michaël Beck, Marjan Moreels, Paul Jacquet, Patrick Van Oostveldt, Winnok De Vos, Sarah Baatout

    Research outputpeer-review


    The impact of ionizing radiation on developing organisms has been widely studied for risk assessment purposes. Even though efforts have been made to decrease received doses to as low as reasonably achievable, the possibility of accidental exposure has to be considered as well. Mammalian gestation is usually divided into three periods. Radiation exposure during the ‘pre-implantation period’ may essentially result in embryonic mortality while exposure during the ‘organogenesis period’ may characteristically lead to malformations. In humans, the ‘fetal period’ is one of particular sensitivity to radiation induction of mental retardation, especially if the exposure occurs between weeks 8-15 of gestation. It is also admitted that prenatal irradiation may increase the risk of leukemia and childhood cancer, with an equal risk over the whole pregnancy. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of moderate to high doses of X-irradiation on mouse skin fetal fibroblasts, one of the cell types subjected to the highest dose of radiation. Exposure of the cells to X-rays led to a rapid and significant increase in γ-H2AX foci, indicative of high levels of DNA double strand breaks.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)114-118
    JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Medicine
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - 10 Apr 2012

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