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The Relation of Atmosphere to Biological Effects of X-Rays

, : The Relation of Atmosphere to Biological Effects of X-Rays. Genetics 34(1): 26-43

Tests with germinating seeds of barley showed that X-radiation was more effective if the seeds were in air than if they were in a vacuum during the treatment. Criteria for making the comparisons were: (1) Germination; (2) Growth (particularly of seedlings); (3) Chromosomal aberrations in root-tip cells; (4) Mutation frequency (1 test only). In 4 tests comparing the frequencies of chromatinic bridges in root-tip cells, the avg. frequency of bridges in cells from seeds X-rayed in air was 4.7 times as high as the frequency in similar cells from seeds X-rayed in a vacuum. In a test comparing the mutation frequencies, a dose of about 1200 r units applied to germinating seeds while in a vacuum, resulted in a frequency of seedling mutants in X2 of 2.1[plus or minus] 0.32% as compared with 3.4[plus or minus]0.35% for seeds irradiated while in air[long dash]a difference somewhat more than 3 times its standard error. The limited literature on the relation of atmosphere to the biological effects of X-radiation is reviewed. A rather extensive discussion is given of the implications of the results.


PMID: 17247303

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