Biological dosimetry is an essential tool for estimating radiation doses received to personnel when physical dosimetry is not available or inadequate. The current preferred biodosimetry method is based on the measurement of radiation-specific dicentric chromosomes in exposed individuals' peripheral blood lymphocytes. However, this method is labor-, time- and expertise-demanding. Consequently, for mass casualty applications, strategies have been developed to increase its throughput. One such strategy is to develop validated cytogenetic biodosimetry laboratory networks, both national and international. In a previous study, the dicentric chromosome assay (DCA) was validated in our cytogenetic biodosimetry network involving five geographically dispersed laboratories. A complementary strategy to further enhance the throughput of the DCA among inter-laboratory networks is to use a triage DCA where dose assessments are made by truncating the labor-demanding and time-consuming metaphase spread analysis to 20 - 50 metaphase spreads instead of routine 500 - 1000 metaphase spread analysis. Our laboratory network also validated this triage DCA, however, these dose estimates were made using calibration curves generated in each laboratory from the blood samples irradiated in a single laboratory. In an emergency situation, dose estimates made using pre-existing calibration curves which may vary according to radiation type and dose rate and therefore influence the assessed dose. Here, we analyze the effect of using a pre-existing calibration curve on assessed dose among our network laboratories. The dose estimates were made by analyzing 1000 metaphase spreads as well as triage quality scoring and compared to actual physical doses applied to the samples for validation. The dose estimates in the laboratory partners were in good agreement with the applied physical doses and determined to be adequate for guidance in the treatment of acute radiation syndrome.

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Keywords Biological dosimetry, Dicentric chromosome assay, Emergency response, International networking, Triage
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Journal Radiation Measurements
Wilkins, R.C, Romm, H. (Horst), Oestreicher, U. (Ursula), Marro, L. (Leonora), Yoshida, M.A. (Mitsuaki A.), Suto, Y. (Y.), & Prasanna, P.G.S. (Pataje G.S.). (2011). Biological dosimetry by the triage dicentric chromosome assay - Further validation of international networking. In Radiation Measurements (Vol. 46, pp. 923–928). doi:10.1016/j.radmeas.2011.03.012