Radiation causing mutations 1960

Trawsfynydd and cancer: nuclear power kills

The effects of radiation on our health

Child leukaemia doubles near French nuclear plants

Radioactive spikes from nuclear plants - a likely cause of childhood leukemia

Nuclear radiation, Kierkegaard, and the philosophy of denial

Radiation Exposure Debate Rages Inside EPA

Leuren Moret: Global nuclear coverup

FDA suppressed imaging safety concerns

FDA Ignored Radiation Warnings

Dr. Strangelove


"The power of an aroused public is unbeatable."

Dr. Helen Caldicott

radiation dose damage

Fatal Birth Defects Surge in the US Due to Radiation Exposure

Two Ways Ionizing Radiation Damages DNA

How Radiation Affects DNA

Herman Joseph Muller wins the Nobel Prize in Medicine.

The effects of radiation are thought of in terms of effects on living cells.

A typical CT scan equals 400 chest X-rays.

Equal doses of different types or energies of radiation cause different amounts of biological damage to living cells.

The units used to measure ionizing radiation are rather complex.

The ionizing effects of radiation are measured by units of exposure:

The coulomb per kilogram (C/kg) is the SI unit of ionizing radiation exposure, and measures the amount of radiation required to create 1 coulomb of charge of each polarity in 1 kilogram of matter.

The roentgen (R) is an older traditional unit that is almost out of use, which represented the amount of radiation required to liberate 1 esu of charge of each polarity in 1 cubic centimeter of dry air.

1 Roentgen = 2.58×10-4 C/kg.

However, the amount of damage done to matter (especially living tissue) by ionizing radiation is more closely related to the amount of energy deposited rather than the charge.

This is called the absorbed dose.

The gray (Gy), with units J/kg, is the SI unit of absorbed dose, which represents the amount of radiation required to deposit 1 joule of energy in 1 kilogram of any kind of matter.

The rad (Roentgen absorbed dose), is the corresponding traditional unit which is 0.01 J deposited per kg. 100 rad = 1 Gy.

1 Gy of alpha radiation causes about 20 times as much damage as 1 Gy of x-rays.

The equivalent dose is defined to give an approximate measure of the biological effect of radiation.

It is calculated by multiplying the absorbed dose by a weighting factor WR which is different for each type of radiation (see above table).

The sievert (Sv) is the SI unit of equivalent dose.

Although it has the same units as grays, J/kg, it measures something different.

It is the dose of any type of radiation in Gy that has the same biological effect on a human as 1 Gy of x-rays or gamma radiation.

The rem (Roentgen equivalent man) is the traditional unit of equivalent dose.

1 sievert = 100 rem.

Because the rem is a relatively large unit, typical equivalent dose is measured in millirem (mrem), 10-3 rem, or in microsievert (µSv), 10-6 Sv. 1 mrem = 10 µSv.

For low levels of radiation, the biological effects are so small they may not be detected in epidemiological studies.

The body repairs many types of radiation and chemical damage.

Biological effects of radiation on living cells may result in a variety of outcomes, including:

Cells experience DNA damage and are able to detect and repair the damage.

Cells experience DNA damage and are unable to repair the damage.

These cells may go through the process of programmed cell death, or apoptosis, thus eliminating the potential genetic damage from the larger tissue.

Cells experience a nonlethal DNA mutation that is passed on to subsequent cell divisions.

This mutation may contribute to the formation of a cancer.

Other observations at the tissue level are more complicated.

These include:

In some cases, a small radiation dose reduces the impact of a subsequent, larger radiation dose.

This has been termed an 'adaptive response' and is related to hypothetical mechanisms of hormesis.

Radiation hormesis is the unproven theory that a low level of ionizing radiation (i.e. near the level of Earth's natural background radiation) helps "immunize" cells against DNA damage from other causes (such as free radicals or larger doses of ionizing radiation), and decreases the risk of cancer.

The theory proposes that such low levels activate the body's DNA repair mechanisms, causing higher levels of cellular DNA repair proteins to be present in the body, improving the body's ability to repair DNA damage.

This allopathic theory is very similar to the theory of vaccination immunization.

This assertion is very difficult to prove (using, for example, statistical cancer studies) because the effects of very low ionizing radiation levels are too small to be statistically measured amid the "noise" of normal cancer rates.

The idea of radiation hormesis is considered unproven by regulatory bodies, which generally use the standard "linear, no threshold" (LNT) model - the risk of cancer is directly proportional to the dose level of ionizing radiation.

The LNT model is safer for regulatory purposes because it assumes worst-case damage due to ionizing radiation; therefore, if regulations are based on it, workers might be over-protected, but they will never be under-protected.

In biology, radiation is mainly used for sterilization, and enhancing mutations.

The 'background' dose of natural radiation is ~ 3 mSv (300 mrem) per year.

The lethal dose of radiation for a human is around 4 - 5 Sv (400 - 500 rem).

radiation milkl

The Forgotten Story Of The Radium Girls

Deadly Glow: The Radium Dial Worker Tragedy

Breast cancer and nuclear power - statistics reveal the link 'they' wanted to hide

1898 Marie and Pierre Curie distill radium from pitchblende.

1907 James Douglas, a scientist and mining engineer, daughter Naomi is diagnosed with breast cancer.

Doctors in New York operate on her five separate times but each time the cancer returns.

As a last-ditch attempt at a cure, Douglas takes his daughter to Europe to be treated with radium.

1910 Douglas devotes his life to the promotion of radium therapy for cancer treatment.

1913 With a US government grant, Douglas forms the National Radium Institute, to mine radium from uranium ores recently discovered in Colorado.

1917 Douglas gives his entire share of the National Radium Institute to Memorial Hospital along with the stipulation that the hospital should return to its original mandate of serving as a cancer hospital.

The second is that radiation would be studied and used to treat cancer.

1918 Grace Fryer starts work as a dial painter at the United States Radium Corporation (USRC) in Orange, New Jersey.

Dial painting was "the elite job for the poor working girls".

It pays more than three times the average factory job, and those lucky enough to land a position ranked in the top 5% of female workers nationally, giving the women financial freedom in a time of burgeoning female empowerment.

Radium's luminosity is part of its allure, and the dial painters soon became known as the "ghost girls" - because by the time they finished their shifts, they themselves would glow in the dark.

Radium is believed to be beneficial to health.

People drank radium water as a tonic, and one could buy cosmetics, butter, milk, and toothpaste laced with radium.

Newspapers reported its use would "add years to our lives!"

1946 Herman Joseph Muller, an American scientist, concludes from his investigations that low dose exposure, and therefore even natural background radiation, is mutagenic and there is no harmless dose range for heritable effects or for cancer induction.

1947 Colonel EE Kirkpatrick of the US Atomic Energy Commission issues a secret document (Document 07075001, January 8, 1947) stating the agency will begin administering intravenous doses of radioactive substances to humans.

Researchers inject 4.7 micrograms of plutonium into American soldiers at the Oak Ridge facility.

Plutonium Trojan Horse in the Body

Researchers give a total of 200 doses of iodine-131, a radioactive tracer that concentrates almost immediately in the thyroid gland, to 85 healthy Eskimos and 17 Athapascan Indians living in Alaska.

Laboratory workers at the University of Minnesota and University of Chicago inject human guinea pigs with phosphorus-32.

University of Rochester radiologist Colonel Stafford Warren injects plutonium into human at the teaching hospital, Strong Memorial.

University of Rochester researchers inject four male and two female human guinea pigs with uranium-234 and uranium-235 in dosages ranging from 6.4 to 70.7 micrograms per one kilogram of body weight in order to study how much uranium they could tolerate before their kidneys fail.

Six male employees of a Chicago metallurgical laboratory are given water contaminated with plutonium-239 to drink so that researchers can learn how plutonium is absorbed into the digestive tract.

Human guinea pigs are given one to four injections of arsenic-76 at the University of Chicago Department of Medicine.

The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) sponsors iodine studies at the University of Iowa.

In the first study, researchers give pregnant women 100 to 200 microcuries of iodine-131 and then study the women's aborted embryos in order to learn at what stage and to what extent radioactive iodine crosses the placental barrier.

In the second study, researchers give 12 male and 13 female newborns under 36 hours old and weighing between 5.5 and 8.5 lb iodine-131 either orally or via intramuscular injection, later measuring the concentration of iodine in the newborns' thyroid glands.

Researchers feed 28 healthy infants at the University of Nebraska College of Medicine iodine-131 through a gastric tube and then test concentration of iodine in the infants' thyroid glands.

At the University of Tennessee, researchers inject healthy two-to three-day-old newborns with approximately 60 rads of iodine-131.

Researchers at Harper Hospital in Detroit give oral doses of iodine-131 to 65 premature and full-term infants weighing between 2.1 and 5.5 lb.

Eleven patients at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston are injected with uranium.

Researchers inject a genetic compound called radioactive thymidine into the testicles of more than 100 Oregon State Penitentiary inmates to learn whether sperm production is affected by exposure to steroid hormones.

1958 The Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) drops radioactive materials over Point Hope, Alaska, home to the Inupiats, in a field test known under the codename "Project Chariot."

1986 Six documented accidents occurred when the high-current electron beam generated in X-ray mode was delivered directly to patients.

Two software faults were to blame.

One, when the operator incorrectly selected X-ray mode before quickly changing to electron mode, which allowed the electron beam to be set for X-ray mode without the X-ray target being in place.

A second fault allowed the electron beam to activate during field-light mode, during which no beam scanner was active or target was in place.

Killed By A Machine: The Therac-25

dog and pony show with smoke and mirrors

unique library index

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