Purpose: To evaluate the importance of annual intercomparisons for maintaining the capacity and capabilities of a well-established biodosimetry network in conjunction with assessing efficient and effective analysis methods for emergency response. Materials and methods: Annual intercomparisons were conducted between laboratories in the Canadian National Biological Dosimetry Response Plan. Intercomparisons were performed over a six-year period and comprised of the shipment of 10-12 irradiated, blinded blood samples for analysis by each of the participating laboratories. Dose estimates were determined by each laboratory using the dicentric chromosome assay (conventional and QuickScan scoring) and where possible the cytokinesis block micronucleus (CBMN) assay. Dose estimates were returned to the lead laboratory for evaluation and comparison. Results: Individual laboratories performed comparably from year to year with only slight fluctuations in performance. Dose estimates using the dicentric chromosome assay were accurate about 80% of the time and the QuickScan method for scoring the dicentric chromosome assay was proven to reduce the time of analysis without having a significant effect on the dose estimates. Although analysis with the CBMN assay was comparable to QuickScan scoring with respect to speed, the accuracy of the dose estimates was greatly reduced. Conclusions: Annual intercomparisons are necessary to maintain a network of laboratories for emergency response biodosimetry as they evoke confidence in their capabilities.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Biodosimetry, Dicentric chromosome assay, Emergency response, Intercomparison
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.3109/09553002.2015.1012305
Journal International Journal of Radiation Biology
Wilkins, R.C, Beaton-Green, L.A. (Lindsay A.), Lachapelle, S. (Sylvie), Kutzner, B.C. (Barbara C.), Ferrarotto, C. (Catherine), Chauhan, V. (Vinita), … Flegal, F.N. (Farrah N.). (2015). Evaluation of the annual Canadian biodosimetry network intercomparisons. International Journal of Radiation Biology, 91(5), 443–451. doi:10.3109/09553002.2015.1012305