How Soon After Irradiation Do Chromosome Aberrations Form and Become Irreversible: a Direct Analysis by Means of the Premature Chromosome Condensation Technique

  • G. E. Pantelias
  • J. K. Wiencke
  • V. Afzal
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 124)


Radiation-induced chromosome breaks and rearrangements may play a crucial role in both mutagenesis and carcinogenesis. Yet, because radiation induces far more initial chromosome breaks than are observed as aberrations at metaphase, it has not been possible to examine the kinetics of primary breakage and rejoining in lymphocytes. A simple method for cell fusion and premature condensation induction is used to study primary chromosome breakage, rejoining and formation of irreversible chromosome rearrangements (e. g., rings, dicentrics) in G0 human lymphocytes. The dose-response relations for chromosome fragments analyzed immediately or 1, 2 or 24 h after exposure were found to be linear. Chromosome fragment rejoining and ring formation were completed about 6 h after irradiation. with the use of C-banded chromosome preparations, it could be seen that dicentric chromosomes were also formed in the G0 lymphocytes during the chromosome fragment rejoining process. Regardless of dose and post-irradiation time, rings were found to follow a Poisson distribution, whereas chromosome fragments were overdispersed.


Chromosome Aberration Ring Formation Chromosome Fragment Human Peripheral Blood Lymphocyte Dicentric Chromosome 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    A. M. Kellerer and H. H. Rossi, The theory of dual radiation action, Curr. Top. Rad. Res. 8:85–158 (1972).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    K. H. Chadwick and H. P. Leenhouts, A molecular theory of cell survival, Phys. Med. Biol. 18:78–87 (1973).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    N. V. Luchnik, Do one-hit chromosome exchanges exist?, Rad. Environ. Biophys. 12:197–204 (1975).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    D. T. Goodhead, Models of radiation inactivation and mutagenesis, in: “Radiation Biology in Cancer Research,” R. E. Meyn and H. R. Withers, eds., Raven Press, New York (1980), pp. 231–247.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    R. T. Johnson and P. N. Rao, Mammalian cell fusion: induction of premature chromosome condensation in interphase nuclei, Nature 226:717–722 (1970).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    G. E. Pantelias and H. D. Maillie, A simple method for premature chromosome condensation induction in primary human and rodent cells using polyethylene glycol, Somat. Cell Genet. 9:533–547 (1983).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    A. T. Sumner, A simple technique for demonstrating centromeric heterochromatin, Exp. Cell Res. 75:304–306 (1972).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    J. R. K. Savage, Sites of radiation induced chromosome exchanges, Curr. Top. Radiat. Res. Qtly. 6:129–194 (1970).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    G. E. Pantelias and H. D. Maillie, Direct analysis of radiationinduced chromosome fragments and rings in unstimulated human peripheral blood lymphocytes by means of the premature chromosome condensation technique, Mutat. Res. (1984), in press.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    S. Wolff, The repair of X-ray-induced chromosome aberrations in stimulated and unstimulated human lymphocytes, Mutat. Res. 15:435–444 (1972).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    R. P. Virsik and D. Harder, Analysis of radiation-induced acentric fragments in human G0 lymphocytes, Radiat. Environ. Biophys 19:29–40 (1981).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. E. Pantelias
    • 1
  • J. K. Wiencke
    • 1
  • V. Afzal
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Radiobiology and Environmental HealthUniversity of CaliforniaSan FranciscoUSA

Personalised recommendations