Letter | Published:

Retention of Radioactive Substances in the Body of Rats and the Lethal Dose



THERAPY by radioactive substances introduced directly into the organism is limited only to a small number of elements, as the use of radioactive salts deposited permanently in the bones proved to be dangerous1. For this reason only two elements have been studied, namely, radon and polonium, with regard to their retention in the organism and quick elimination by means of various vehicles. Experiments were carried out with rats, the weight of which varied from 66 gm. to 290 gm. The present communication deals with the results obtained with radon only. A physiological solution, namely, a 10 per cent solution of glucose or emulsion of tungsten in olive oil, is used as vehicle. The rats received an injection of a maximum dose of 1 c.c. of these substances either subcutaneously or intermuscularly. The solutions were activated with radon in such a manner that the activity of one injection was 0·5–14 millicuries. The rate of elimination of radon from the body of the rats was measured electrometrically by the method of gamma rays of the active deposit of radon.

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  1. 1

    Summarized report: Evans, R. D., Amer. J. Public Health, 23, 1017 (1933); Laborde, S., Presse méd., Nr. 95 (1936).

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