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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(12), 23791-23800; doi:10.3390/ijms141223791
Article

The Lack of Cytotoxic Effect and Radioadaptive Response in Splenocytes of Mice Exposed to Low Level Internal β-Particle Irradiation through Tritiated Drinking Water in Vivo

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Received: 8 October 2013 / Revised: 20 November 2013 / Accepted: 25 November 2013 / Published: 5 December 2013
(This article belongs to the collection Radiation Toxicity in Cells)
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Abstract

Health effects of tritium, a β-emitter and a by-product of the nuclear industry, is a subject of significant controversy. This mouse in vivo study was undertaken to monitor biological effects of low level tritium exposure. Mice were exposed to tritiated drinking water (HTO) at 10 KBq/L, 1 MBq/L and 20 MBq/L concentrations for one month. The treatment did not result in a significant increase of apoptosis in splenocytes. To examine if this low level tritium exposure alters radiosensitivity, the extracted splenocytes were challenged in vitro with 2 Gy γ-radiation, and apoptotic responses at 1 and 24 h were measured. No alterations in the radiosensitivity were detected in cells from mice exposed to tritium compared to sham-treated mice. In contrast, low dose γ-irradiation at 20 or 100 mGy, resulted in a significant increase in resistance to apoptotic cell death after 2 Gy irradiation; an indication of the radioadaptive response. Overall, our data suggest that low concentrations of tritium given to mice as HTO in drinking water do not exert cytotoxic effect in splenocytes, nor do they change cellular sensitivity to additional high dose γ-radiation. The latter may be considered as the lack of a radioadaptive response, typically observed after low dose γ-irradiation.
Keywords: β-radiation; tritium; cytotoxicity; radioadaptive response; apoptosis; in vivo β-radiation; tritium; cytotoxicity; radioadaptive response; apoptosis; in vivo
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Flegal, M.; Blimkie, M.; Roch-Lefevre, S.; Gregoire, E.; Klokov, D. The Lack of Cytotoxic Effect and Radioadaptive Response in Splenocytes of Mice Exposed to Low Level Internal β-Particle Irradiation through Tritiated Drinking Water in Vivo. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 23791-23800.

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