Rydberg, B., Cooper, B., Cooper, P. K., Holley, W. R. and Chatterjee, A. Dose-Dependent Misrejoining of Radiation-Induced DNA Double-Strand Breaks in Human Fibroblasts: Experimental and Theoretical Study for High- and Low-LET Radiation. Radiat. Res. 163, 526–534 (2005).
Misrejoining of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) was measured in human primary fibroblasts after exposure to X rays and high-LET particles (helium, nitrogen and iron) in the dose range 10–80 Gy. To measure joining of wrong DNA ends, the integrity of a 3.2-Mbp restriction fragment was analyzed directly after exposure and after 16 h of repair incubation. It was found that the misrejoining frequency for X rays was nonlinearly related to dose, with less probability of misrejoining at low doses than at high doses. The dose dependence for the high-LET particles, on the other hand, was closer to being linear, with misrejoining frequencies higher than for X rays, particularly at the lower doses. These experimental results were simulated with a Monte Carlo approach that includes a cell nucleus model with all 46 chromosomes present, combined with realistic track structure simulations to calculate the geometrical positions of all DSBs induced for each dose. The model assumes that the main determinant for misrejoining probability is the distance between two simultaneously present DSBs. With a Gaussian interaction probability function with distance, it was found that the data for both low- and high-LET radiation could be fitted with an interaction distance (sigma of the Gaussian curve) of 0.25 μm. This is half the distance previously found to best fit chromosomal aberration data in human lymphocytes using the same methods (Holley et al., Radiat. Res. 158, 568–580, 2002). The discrepancy may indicate inadequacies in the chromosome model, for example insufficient chromosomal overlap, but may also be partly due to differences between fibroblasts and lymphocytes.