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Unexpected Dose-rate Effect in the Killing of Mice by Radiation


IT has been well established for many years that the effectiveness of ionizing radiation may be correlated with dose-rate1–4. The relative ineffectiveness of radiation at low dose-rates is generally regarded as resulting from the operation of intracellular repair or recovery mechanisms, which may act between successive damaging events, when an accumulation of these is required to give the effect under investigation. In most radiobiological investigations on mammals, or with mammalian cells, experimenters have used dose-rates of up to a few hundred rads per min, so that the duration of ‘acute’ doses is usually to be measured in minutes or tens of minutes.

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HORNSEY, S., ALPER, T. Unexpected Dose-rate Effect in the Killing of Mice by Radiation. Nature 210, 212–213 (1966).

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