Recent findings in populations exposed to ionizing radiation (IR) indicate dose-related lens opacification occurs at much lower doses (<2 Gy) than indicated in radiation protection guidelines. As a result, research efforts are now being directed towards identifying early predictors of lens degeneration resulting in cataractogenesis. In this study, Raman micro-spectroscopy was used to investigate the effects of varying doses of radiation, ranging from 0.01 Gy to 5 Gy, on human lens epithelial (HLE) cells which were chemically fixed 24 h post-irradiation. Raman spectra were acquired from the nucleus and cytoplasm of the HLE cells. Spectra were collected from points in a 3 × 3 grid pattern and then averaged. The raw spectra were preprocessed and principal component analysis followed by linear discriminant analysis was used to discriminate between dose and control for 0.25, 0.5, 2, and 5 Gy. Using leave-one-out cross-validation accuracies of greater than 74% were attained for each dose/control combination. The ultra-low doses 0.01 and 0.05 Gy were included in an analysis of band intensities for Raman bands found to be significant in the linear discrimination, and an induced repair model survival curve was fit to a band-difference-ratio plot of this data, suggesting HLE cells undergo a nonlinear response to low-doses of IR. A survival curve was also fit to clonogenic assay data done on the irradiated HLE cells, showing a similar nonlinear response.

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Keywords human lens epithelial cells, ionizing radiation, low-dose response, PCA-LDA, Raman micro-spectroscopy
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Journal Physics in Medicine and Biology
Allen, C.H. (Christian Harry), Kumar, A. (Achint), Qutob, S. (Sami), Nyiri, B. (Balazs), Chauhan, V. (Vinita), & Murugkar, S. (2018). Raman micro-spectroscopy analysis of human lens epithelial cells exposed to a low-dose-range of ionizing radiation. Physics in Medicine and Biology, 63(2). doi:10.1088/1361-6560/aaa176