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1.  Biological Dosimetry by the Triage Dicentric Chromosome Assay – Further validation of International Networking 
Radiation measurements  2011;46(9):923-928.
Biological dosimetry is an essential tool for estimating radiation doses received to personnel when physical dosimetry is not available or inadequate. The current preferred biodosimetry method is based on the measurement of radiation-specific dicentric chromosomes in exposed individuals' peripheral blood lymphocytes. However, this method is labour-, time- and expertise-demanding. Consequently, for mass casualty applications, strategies have been developed to increase its throughput. One such strategy is to develop validated cytogenetic biodosimetry laboratory networks, both national and international. In a previous study, the dicentric chromosome assay (DCA) was validated in our cytogenetic biodosimetry network involving five geographically dispersed laboratories. A complementary strategy to further enhance the throughput of the DCA among inter-laboratory networks is to use a triage DCA where dose assessments are made by truncating the labour-demanding and time-consuming metaphase-spread analysis to 20 to 50 metaphase spreads instead of routine 500 to 1000 metaphase spread analysis. Our laboratory network also validated this triage DCA, however, these dose estimates were made using calibration curves generated in each laboratory from the blood samples irradiated in a single laboratory. In an emergency situation, dose estimates made using pre-existing calibration curves which may vary according to radiation type and dose rate and therefore influence the assessed dose. Here, we analyze the effect of using a pre-existing calibration curve on assessed dose among our network laboratories. The dose estimates were made by analyzing 1000 metaphase spreads as well as triage quality scoring and compared to actual physical doses applied to the samples for validation. The dose estimates in the laboratory partners were in good agreement with the applied physical doses and determined to be adequate for guidance in the treatment of acute radiation syndrome.
PMCID: PMC3176593  PMID: 21949482
2.  International study of factors affecting human chromosome translocations 
Mutation research  2008;652(2):112-121.
Chromosome translocations in peripheral blood lymphocytes of normal, healthy humans increase with age, but the effects of gender, race, and cigarette smoking on background translocation yields have not been examined systematically. Further, the shape of the relationship between age and translocation frequency (TF) has not been definitively determined. We collected existing data from sixteen laboratories in North America, Europe, and Asia on TFs measured in peripheral blood lymphocytes by fluorescence in situ hybridization whole chromosome painting among 1933 individuals. In Poisson regression models, age, ranging from newborns (cord blood) to 85 years, was strongly associated with TF and this relationship showed significant upward curvature at older ages vs. a linear relationship (p <0.001). Ever smokers had significantly higher TFs than non-smokers (rate ratio (RR) = 1.19, 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.09–1.30) and smoking modified the effect of age on TFs with a steeper age-related increase among ever smokers compared to non-smokers (p<0.001). TFs did not differ by gender. Interpreting an independent effect of race was difficult owing to laboratory variation. Our study is three times larger than any pooled effort to date, confirming a suspected curvilinear relationship of TF with age. The significant effect of cigarette smoking has not been observed with previous pooled studies of TF in humans. Our data provide stable estimates of background TF by age, gender, race, and smoking status and suggest an acceleration of chromosome damage above age 60 and among those with a history of smoking cigarettes.
PMCID: PMC2696320  PMID: 18337160
chromosome translocations; background frequency; controls; fluorescence in situ hybridization

Results 1-2 (2)