Mutations Induced in Tradescantia by Small Doses of X-rays and Neutrons: Analysis of Dose-Response Curves

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Science  26 May 1972:
Vol. 176, Issue 4037, pp. 916-918
DOI: 10.1126/science.176.4037.916


Dose-response curves for pink somatic mutations in Tradescantia stamen hairs were analyzed after neutron and x-ray irradiation with doses ranging from a fraction of a rad to the region of saturation. The dose-effect relation for neutrons indicates a linear dependence from 0.01 to 8 rads; between 0.25 and 5 rads a linear dependence is indicated for x-rays also. As a consequence the relative biological effectiveness reaches a constant value (about 50) at low doses. The observations are in good agreement with the predictions of the theory of dual radiation action and support its interpretation of the effects of radiation on higher organisms. The doubling dose of x-rays was found to be nearly I rad.