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Modelling the effect of non-uniform radon progeny activities on transformation frequencies in human bronchial airways


Journal title : Radiation Protection Dosimetry
Volume : 121
Issue : 3
Pagination : 221-235 
Publication date : 01/12/2006

Summary

The effects of radiological and morphological source heterogeneities in straight and Y-shaped bronchial airways on hit frequencies and microdosimetric quantities in epithelial cells have been investigated previously. The goal of the present study is to relate these physical quantities to transformation frequencies in sensitive target cells and to radon-induced lung cancer risk. Based on an effect-specific track length model, computed linear energy transfer (LET) spectra were converted to corresponding transformation frequencies for different activity distributions and source - target configurations. Average transformation probabilities were considerably enhanced for radon progeny accumulations and target cells at the carinal ridge, relative to uniform activity distributions and target cells located along the curved and straight airway portions at the same exposure level. Although uncorrelated transformation probabilities produce a linear dose - effect relationship, correlated transformations first increase depending on the LET, but then decrease significantly when exceeding a defined number of hits or cumulative exposure level.

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