Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The Gray Laboratory charged-particle microbeam has been used to assess the clonogenic ability of Chinese hamster V79 cells after irradiation of their nuclei with a precisely defined number of protons with energies of 1.0 and 3.2 MeV. The microbeam uses a 1-microm silica capillary collimator to deliver protons to subcellular targets with high accuracy. The detection system is based on a miniature photomultiplier tube positioned above the cell dish, which detects the photons generated by the passage of the charged particles through an 18-microm-thick scintillator placed below the cells. With this system, a detection efficiency of greater than 99% is achieved. The cells are plated on specially designed dishes (3-microm-thick Mylar base), and the nuclei are identified by fluorescence microscopy. After an incubation period of 3 days, the cells are revisited individually to assess the formation of colonies from the surviving cells. For each energy investigated, the survival curve obtained for the microbeam shows a significant deviation below 1 Gy from a response extrapolated using the LQ model for the survival data above 1 Gy. The data are well fitted by a model that supports the hypothesis that radioresistance is induced by low-dose hypersensitivity. These studies demonstrate the potential of the microbeam for performing studies of the effects of single charged particles on cells in vitro. The hypersensitive responses observed are comparable with those reported by others using different radiations and techniques.


Journal article


Radiat Res

Publication Date





526 - 534


Animals, Bisbenzimidazole, Cell Survival, Cricetinae, Linear Energy Transfer, Protons, Radiation Tolerance, Ultraviolet Rays