Long-term radiation damage : evaluation of life-span studies

by Bernice B. Brown

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A statistical evaluation of 39 experimental reports of the life spans of laboratory mice which survived whole-body exposure to acute doses of X-rays or gamma rays. For the same age, life shortening increases roughly linearly with dosage. For the same dose, life shortening decreases linearly with age at exposure. Data are lacking for assessing radiation effects on man; however, extrapolation by using comparative life span, life expectancy, or mortality rates, gives an estimated range of 7 to 12 days life shortening per roentgen. Theories of radiation damage are summarized, as well as the underlying theories of aging. Methodology for testing hypotheses nonparametrically is given in the appendix.

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