Correlation between radiation dose and p53 protein expression levels in human lymphocytes

The aim of this research was to evaluate the relationship between p53 protein levels and absorbed doses from in vitro irradiated human lymphocytes. For this, samples of blood from 23 donors were irradiated with 0.5; 1; 2; and 4 Gy from a Cobalt-60 source, and the percentages of lymphocytes expressing p53 were scored using Flow Cytometry. The subjects were divided into 3 groups, in accordance with the p53 levels expressed per radiation dose: low (Group I), high (Group II), and excessive levels (Group III). For all groups, the analyses showed that the p53 expression levels increase with the absorbed dose. Particularly for groups I and II, the correlation between this protein expression and the dose follows the linear-quadratic model, such as for radio-induced chromosomal aberrations. In conclusion, the authors findings indicate possible applications of this approach in evaluating individual radiosensitivity prior to radiotherapeutical procedures as well as in medical surveillance of occupationally exposed workers. Furthermore, due to the rapidity of flow-cytometric analyses, the methodology here employed would play an important role in emergency responses to a large-scale radiation incident where many people may have been exposed.

Authors: Cavalcanti MB, Fernandes TS, Silva EB, Amaral A. ;Full Source: Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências. 2015 Aug 25. pii: S0001-37652015005050084. [Epub ahead of print] ;