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Rothkamm K.,Public Health England | Horn S.,Public Health England | Scherthan H.,University of Ulm | Rossler U.,Federal office for Radiation Protection | And 8 more authors.
Radiation Research | Year: 2013

The focus of the study is an intercomparison of laboratories' dose-assessment performances using the γ-H2AX foci assay as a diagnostic triage tool for rapid individual radiation dose assessment. Homogenously X-irradiated (240 kVp, 1 Gy/min) blood samples for establishing calibration data (0.25-4 Gy) as well as blinded test samples (0.1-6.4 Gy) were incubated at 37°C for 2 and 24 h (repair time) and sent to the participants. The foci assay was performed according to protocols individually established in participating laboratories and therefore varied. The time taken to report dose estimates was documented for each laboratory. Additional information concerning laboratory organization/characteristics as well as assay performance was collected. The mean absolute difference (MAD) of estimated doses relative to the actual doses was calculated and radiation doses were merged into four triage categories reflecting clinical relevance to calculate accuracy, sensitivity and specificity. First γ-H2AX based dose estimates were reported 7 h after sample receipt. Estimates were similarly accurate for 2 and 24 h repair times, providing scope for its use in the early phase of a radiation exposure incident. Equal accuracy was achieved by scoring 20, 30, 40 or 50 cells per sample. However, MAD values of 0.5-0.7 Gy and 1.3-1.7 Gy divided the data sets into two groups, driven mainly by the considerable differences in foci yields between calibration and blind samples. Foci yields also varied dramatically between laboratories, highlighting reproducibility issues as an important caveat of the foci assay. Nonetheless, foci counts could distinguish high-and low-dose samples in all data sets and binary dose categories of clinical significance could be discriminated with satisfactory accuracy (mean 84%, ±0.03 SEM). Overall, the results suggest that the γ-H2AX assay is a useful tool for rapidly screening individuals for significant exposures that occurred up to at least 24 h earlier, and may help to prioritize cytogenetic dosimetry follow-up. © 2013 by Radiation Research Society. Source


Beinke C.,University of Ulm | Barnard S.,Public Health England | Boulay-Greene H.,Defence Research and Development Canada | De Amicis A.,Centro Studi E Ricerche Of Sanitae Veterinaria | And 15 more authors.
Radiation Research | Year: 2013

The study design and obtained results represent an intercomparison of various laboratories performing dose assessment using the dicentric chromosome analysis (DCA) as a diagnostic triage tool for individual radiation dose assessment. Homogenously X-irradiated (240 kVp, 1 Gy/min) blood samples for establishing calibration data (0.25-5 Gy) as well as blind samples (0.1-6.4 Gy) were sent to the participants. DCA was performed according to established protocols. The time taken to report dose estimates was documented for each laboratory. Additional information concerning laboratory organization/ characteristics as well as assay performance was collected. The mean absolute difference (MAD) was calculated and radiation doses were merged into four triage categories reflecting clinical aspects to calculate accuracy, sensitivity and specificity. The earliest report time was 2.4 days after sample arrival. DCA dose estimates were reported with high and comparable accuracy, with MAD values ranging between 0.16-0.5 Gy for both manual and automated scoring. No significant differences were found for dose estimates based either on 20, 30, 40 or 50 cells, suggesting that the scored number of cells can be reduced from 50 to 20 without loss of precision of triage dose estimates, at least for homogenous exposure scenarios. Triage categories of clinical significance could be discriminated efficiently using both scoring procedures. © 2013 by Radiation Research Society. Source


Badie C.,Public Health England | Kabacik S.,Public Health England | Balagurunathan Y.,University of Arizona | Bernard N.,Life Technologies | And 15 more authors.
Radiation Research | Year: 2013

The possibility of a large-scale acute radiation exposure necessitates the development of new methods that could provide rapid individual dose estimates with high sample throughput. The focus of the study was an intercomparison of laboratories' dose-assessment performances using gene expression assays. Lithium-heparinized whole blood from one healthy donor was irradiated (240 kVp, 1 Gy/min) immediately after venipuncture at approximately 37°C using single X-ray doses. Blood samples to establish calibration curves (0.25-4 Gy) as well as 10 blinded test samples (0.1-6.4 Gy) were incubated for 24 h at 37°C supplemented with an equal volume of medium and 10% fetal calf serum. For quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR), samples were lysed, stored at-20°C and shipped on ice. For the Chemical Ligation Dependent Probe Amplification methodology (CLPA), aliquots were incubated in 2 ml CLPA reaction buffer (DxTerity), mixed and shipped at room temperature. Assays were run in each laboratory according to locally established protocols. The mean absolute difference (MAD) of estimated doses relative to the true doses (in Gy) was calculated. We also merged doses into binary categories reflecting aspects of clinical/diagnostic relevance and examined accuracy, sensitivity and specificity. The earliest reported time on dose estimates was <8 h. The standard deviation of technical replicate measurements in 75% of all measurements was below 11%. MAD values of 0.3-0.5 Gy and 0.8-1.3 Gy divided the laboratories contributions into two groups. These fourfold differences in accuracy could be primarily explained by unexpected variances of the housekeeping gene (P = 0.0008) and performance differences in processing of calibration and blinded test samples by half of the contributing laboratories. Reported gene expression dose estimates aggregated into binary categories in general showed an accuracies and sensitivities of 93-100% and 76-100% for the groups, with low MAD and high MAD, respectively. In conclusion, gene expression-based dose estimates were reported quickly, and for laboratories with MAD between 0.3-0.5 Gy binary dose categories of clinical significance could be discriminated with an accuracy and sensitivity comparable to established cytogenetic assays. © 2013 by Radiation Research Society. Source


Rothkamm K.,Public Health England | Rothkamm K.,Helmholtz Center for Environmental Research | Beinke C.,University of Ulm | Romm H.,Federal office for Radiation Protection | And 31 more authors.
Radiation Research | Year: 2013

Rapid biodosimetry tools are required to assist with triage in the case of a large-scale radiation incident. Here, we aimed to determine the dose-assessment accuracy of the well-established dicentric chromosome assay (DCA) and cytokinesis-block micronucleus assay (CBMN) in comparison to the emerging γ-H2AX foci and gene expression assays for triage mode biodosimetry and radiation injury assessment. Coded blood samples exposed to 10 X-ray doses (240 kVp, 1 Gy/min) of up to 6.4 Gy were sent to participants for dose estimation. Report times were documented for each laboratory and assay. The mean absolute difference (MAD) of estimated doses relative to the true doses was calculated. We also merged doses into binary dose categories of clinical relevance and examined accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of the assays. Dose estimates were reported by the first laboratories within 0.3-0.4 days of receipt of samples for the γ-H2AX and gene expression assays compared to 2.4 and 4 days for the DCA and CBMN assays, respectively. Irrespective of the assay we found a 2.5-4-fold variation of interlaboratory accuracy per assay and lowest MAD values for the DCA assay (0.16 Gy) followed by CBMN (0.34 Gy), gene expression (0.34 Gy) and γ-H2AX (0.45 Gy) foci assay. Binary categories of dose estimates could be discriminated with equal efficiency for all assays, but at doses ≥1.5 Gy a 10% decrease in efficiency was observed for the foci assay, which was still comparable to the CBMN assay. In conclusion, the DCA has been confirmed as the gold standard biodosimetry method, but in situations where speed and throughput are more important than ultimate accuracy, the emerging rapid molecular assays have the potential to become useful triage tools. © 2013 by Radiation Research Society. Source


Romm H.,Federal office for Radiation Protection | Barnard S.,Public Health England | Boulay-Greene H.,Defence Research and Development Canada | De Amicis A.,Centro Studi E Ricerche Of Sanitae Veterinaria | And 18 more authors.
Radiation Research | Year: 2013

The focus of the study is an intercomparison of laboratories' dose-assessment performances using the cytokinesis-block micronucleus (CBMN) assay as a diagnostic triage tool for individual radiation dose assessment. Homogenously X-irradiated (240 kVp, 1 Gy/min) blood samples for establishing calibration data (0.25-5 Gy) as well as blind samples (0.1-6.4 Gy) were sent to the participants. The CBMN assay was performed according to protocols individually established and varying among participating laboratories. The time taken to report dose estimates was documented for each laboratory. Additional information concerning laboratory organization/characteristics as well as assay performance was collected. The mean absolute difference (MAD) was calculated and radiation doses were merged into four triage categories reflecting clinical aspects to calculate accuracy, sensitivity and specificity. The earliest report time was 4 days after sample arrival. The CBMN dose estimates were reported with high accuracy (MAD values of 0.20-0.50 Gy at doses below 6.4 Gy for both manual and automated scoring procedures), but showed a limitation of the assay at the dose point of 6.4 Gy, which resulted in a clear dose underestimation in all cases. The MAD values (without 6.4 Gy) differed significantly (P = 0.03) between manual (0.25 Gy, SEM = 0.06, n = 4) or automated scoring procedures (0.37 Gy, SEM = 0.08, n = 5), but lowest MAD were equal (0.2 Gy) for both scoring procedures. Likewise, both scoring procedures led to the same allocation of dose estimates to triage categories of clinical significance (about 83% accuracy and up to 100% specificity). © 2013 by Radiation Research Society. Source

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