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Assessment of the Relative Biological Efficiency of Pencil Beam Scanning of Protons in Mice in Vivo


The effect of proton pencil beam scanning in the dose range of 4.5–15 Gy on the radiosensitivity of mice under irradiation in two regions of the Bragg curve was studied according to the criteria of 30-day survival, dynamics of death, and average lifespan of mice. The relative biological effectiveness (RBE) value of protons relative to X-ray radiation before and at the Bragg peak determined by the LD50/30 index was 0.86 and 0.94, respectively, and by the criterion of 30-day survival at a dose of 6.5 Gy it was 0.83 and 0.84, respectively. With similar RBE values for protons in different regions of the Bragg curve, significant differences in the dynamics of the course of radiation sickness were revealed, which indicates different damage to critical systems and organs of animals and the induction of compensatory mechanisms involved in the formation of stress responses at the organismal level.

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The work on determining the value of the relative biological efficiency of a proton pencil beam scanning in mice in vivo was carried out on the basis of the Physical Technical Center of the Lebedev Physical Institute and the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics, Russian Academy of Sciences in the framework of basic research on topics of stage assignment with partial financial support of the R&D agreement between Physical Technical Center of the Lebedev Physical Institute and the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics, Russian Academy of Sciences no. 06/20.

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Correspondence to V. E. Balakin.

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Conflict of interest. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Statement on the welfare of animals. All applicable international, national and institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals have been observed in the performance of the work. The studies were carried out in accordance with the requirements of the Federation of European Laboratory Animal Science Association (FELASA) on the maintenance and use of laboratory animals in scientific research, and the experimental plan was approved by the Commission on Biological Safety and Bioethics of the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics, Russian Academy of Sciences (protocol no. 8/2020 dated February 17, 2020).

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Translated by M. Batrukova

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Balakin, V.E., Rozanova, O.M., Smirnova, E.N. et al. Assessment of the Relative Biological Efficiency of Pencil Beam Scanning of Protons in Mice in Vivo. Dokl Biochem Biophys 499, 215–219 (2021).

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  • pencil beam scanning of protons
  • relative biological effectiveness value
  • survival
  • mice