Purpose: To evaluate the types of induced chromosome aberrations after the exposure of peripheral blood to γ-rays by the simultaneous detection of all centromeres and telomeres; and to analyse the suitability of different radiation fingerprints for the assessment of radiation quality in cases of recent exposures. Material and methods: Peripheral blood samples were irradiated at 2, 4 and 6 Gy of γ-rays. Cytogenetic analysis was carried out by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) technique with pan-centromeric and peptide nucleic acid (PNA)-telomeric DNA probes. Cells were analysed using a Cytovision® FISH workstation, chromosome aberrations and the length of the acentric fragments were recorded. Results: The total number of the incomplete chromosome elements was 276. The ratio between incomplete elements and multicentrics was 0.38. The number of acentrics was 1096, 71% were complete acentrics, 15% incomplete acentrics, and 14% interstitial fragments. The relative length of complete, incomplete and interstitial acentrics fragments were 2.70 ± 0.04, 1.91 ± 0.07, and 1.42 ± 0.04 respectively. The mean value of the F-ratio was 11.5 higher than the one, 5.5, previously obtained for α-particles. For the G-ratio there was no difference between γ-rays and α-particles, 2.8 and 2.8 respectively. The mean value of the H-ratio for γ-rays, 0.25, was lower than for α-particles 0.40. Conclusion: The results support that the percentage of incomplete chromosome aberrations depends on radiation type; low-linear energy transfer (LET) radiation would produces less incomplete aberrations than high-LET radiation. The F- and H-ratios seem to be good indicators of radiation quality, although a real estimation of the H-ratio is only possible using pan-telomeric probes. © 2006 Informa UK Ltd.
- Acentric fragments
- Incomplete chromosome aberrations
- Pan-telomeric and pan-centromeric DNA probes
- Radiation quality fingerprints