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Boice J.D.,National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements | Boice J.D.,Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center
Health Physics | Year: 2014

Radiation is in the public eye because of Fukushima, computed tomography examinations, airport screenings, and possible terrorist attacks. What if the Boston Marathon pressure cooker had also contained a radioactive source? Nuclear power may be on the resurgence. Because of the increasing uses of radiation, the increases in population exposures, and the increasing knowledge of radiation effects, constant vigilance is needed to keep up with the changing times. Psychosocial disorders associated with the inappropriate (but real) fear of radiation need to be recognized as radiation detriments. Radiation risk communication, radiation education, and communication must improve at all levels: to members of the public, to the media, to other scientists, and to radiation professionals. Stakeholders must continue to be involved in all radiation protection initiatives. Finally, we are at a crisis as the number of war babies (me) and baby boomers (you?) who are also radiation professionals continues its rapid decline, and there are few in the pipeline to fill the current and looming substantial need: "The old road is rapidly agin'" (Dylan). NCRP has begun the WARP initiative - Where Are the Radiation Professionals? - an attempt to rejuvenate the pipeline of future professionals before the trickle becomes tiny drops. A Workshop was held in July 2013 with government agencies, military, private sector, universities, White House representatives, and societies to develop a coordinated and national action plan. A "Manhattan Project" is needed to get us "Back to the Future" in terms of the funding levels that existed in years past that provided the necessary resources to train, engage, and retain (a.k.a., jobs) the radiation professionals needed for the nation. If we don't keep swimmin' (Disney's Nemo) we'll "sink like a stone" (Dylan). © 2014 Health Physics Society.

Brink J.A.,Yale University | Boice Jr. J.D.,National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements | Boice Jr. J.D.,Vanderbilt University
Radiology | Year: 2012

A novel mixture of antioxidants was shown to reduce formation of double-strand DNA breaks (DSBs), as indicated by phosphorylated histone variant γ-H2AX foci, in human lymphocytes following in vitro radiation with a radiation dose equivalent to 10 mGy (1). While provocative, it is too soon to conclude that antioxidant supplements should be used to protect against any future harmful effects of ionizing radiation potentially associated with medical imaging (2). It is unclear whether γ-H2AX foci are associated with increased cancer rates, no experimental study has found any protective agent to reduce future cancer rates, and exposures typical of diagnostic imaging examinations are in the range that epidemiologic investigation is unable to detect an increase in cancer rates (even if one exists). Nonetheless, such research is encouraged as medical radiation is the number one source of population exposure in the United States. Patients who undergo frequent medical imaging examinations can accumulate doses that are in the range at which excess cancers have been demonstrated, and any protection afforded by a nontoxic antioxidant compound would be an exciting accomplishment. © RSNA, 2012.

Guo Y.,Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center | Li C.-I.,Chiayi University | Sheng Q.,Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center | Winther J.F.,Danish Cancer Society | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Genetics and Genomics | Year: 2013

Little is known about the inheritance of very low heteroplasmy mitochondria DNA (mtDNA) variations. Even with the development of new next-generation sequencing methods, the practical lower limit of measured heteroplasmy is still about 1% due to the inherent noise level of the sequencing. In this study, we sequenced the mitochondrial genome of 44 individuals using Illumina high-throughput sequencing technology and obtained high-coverage mitochondria sequencing data. Our study population contains many mother-offspring pairs. This unique study design allows us to bypass the usual heteroplasmy limitation by analyzing the correlation of mutation levels at each position in the mtDNA sequence between maternally related pairs and non-related pairs. The study showed that very low heteroplasmy variants, down to almost 0.1%, are inherited maternally and that this inheritance begins to decrease at about 0.5%, corresponding to a bottleneck of about 200 mtDNA. © 2013.

Schauer D.A.,National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements
AIP Conference Proceedings | Year: 2011

According to a recently released report from the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) medical exposures account for 98 % of the contribution from manmade sources of ionizing radiation and are now the second largest contributor to population dose worldwide1. Almost 3/4ths of the worldwide collective effective dose from medical imaging is accounted for by healthcare level 1 countries (e.g., Australia, France, United States). An overview of these data will be provided and actions taken by responsible national and international authorities will be described. © 2011 American Institute of Physics.

Madanat-Harjuoja L.-M.,Institute for Statistical and Epidemiological Cancer Research | Lahteenmaki P.M.,University of Turku | Dyba T.,Institute for Statistical and Epidemiological Cancer Research | Gissler M.,Finnish National Institute for Health and Welfare | And 5 more authors.
Acta Oncologica | Year: 2013

Background. Increased awareness of the adverse effects of cancer treatments has prompted the development of fertility preserving regimens for the growing population of cancer survivors who desire to have children of their own. Material and methods. We conducted a registry-based study to evaluate the risk of stillbirth, early death and neonatal morbidity among children of female cancer survivors (0-34 years at diagnosis) compared with children of female siblings. A total of 3501 and 16 908 children of female cancer patients and siblings, respectively, were linked to the national medical birth and cause-of-death registers. Results. The risk of stillbirth or early death was not significantly increased among offspring of cancer survivors as compared to offspring of siblings: the risk [Odds Ratio (OR)] of early neonatal death, i.e. mortality within the first week was 1.35, with a 95% confidence interval (CI) of 0.58-3.18, within 28 days 1.40, 95% CI 0.46-4.24 and within the first year of life 1.11, 95% CI 0.64-1.93 after adjustment for the main explanatory variables. All these risk estimates were reduced towards one after further adjustment for duration of pregnancy. Measures of serious neonatal morbidity were not significantly increased among the children of survivors. However, there was a significant increase in the monitoring of children of cancer survivors for neonatal conditions (OR 1.56, 95% CI 1.35-1.80), which persisted even after correcting for duration of pregnancy, that might be related to parental cancer and its treatment or increased surveillance among the children. Conclusion. Offspring of cancer survivors were more likely to require monitoring or care in a neonatal intensive care unit, but the risk of early death or stillbirth was not increased after adjustment for prematurity. Due to the rarity of the mortality outcomes studied, collaborative studies may be helpful in ruling out the possibility of an increased risk among offspring of cancer survivors. © 2013 Informa Healthcare.

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