DNA damage induction in dry and hydrated DNA by synchrotron radiation

M. Folkard, Kevin Prise, B. Brocklehurst, B.D. Michael

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Radiation biophysics has sought to understand at a molecular level, the mechanisms through which ionizing radiations damage DNA, and other molecules within living cells. The complexity of lesions produced in the DNA by ionizing radiations is thought to depend on the amount of energy deposited at the site of each lesion. To study the relationship between the energy deposited and the damage produced, we have developed novel techniques for irradiating dry prasmid DNA, partially re-hydrated DNA and DNA in solution using monochromatic vacuum-UV synchrotron radiation. We have used photons in the energy range 7-150 eV, corresponding to the range of energies typically involved in the efficient production of DNA single-strand (SSB), and double-strand breaks (DSB) by ionizing radiation. The data show that both types of breaks are produced at all energies investigated (with, or without water present). Also, the energy dependence for DSB induction follows a similar trend to SSB induction but at a 20-30-fold reduced incidence, suggesting a common precursor for both types of damage. Preliminary studies where DNA has been irradiated in solution indicate a change in the shape of the dose-effect curve (from linear, to linear-quadratic for double-strand break induction) and a large increase in sensitivity due to the presence of water.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2753-2761
Number of pages9
JournalJournal Of Physics B-atomic Molecular And Optical Physics
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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