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CRP E35008 Strengthening of “Biological Dosimetry” in IAEA Member States: Improvement of Current Techniques and Intensification of Collaboration and Networking Among the Different Institutes

Participants of the 3rd Research Coordinators Meeting of Coordinated Research Project E35008, IAEA Headquarters, VIC, Vienna, Austria, 7-11 March 2016 (photo: O. Belyakov)

Biological Dosimetry (Biodosimetry) is a branch of Radiation Biology, which helps to estimate the radiation dose absorbed by an individual using biological damage markers produced by radiation (such as chromosomal breaks). Biodosimetry is an indispensable tool in cases of radiological incidents or accidents, cases of medical overexposure, and is now contributing to clinical practices, such as radiation therapy.

The IAEA Coordinated Research Project (CRP) on Strengthening of “Biological Dosimetry” in IAEA Member States (E35008) was launched in 2012 and completed in 2017. Twenty-five institutions from 23 IAEA Member States participated in the project. The main objective of the CRP “to increase the preparedness of biological dosimetry labs in Member States to react on radiation/ nuclear accidents nationally and regionally” was successfully completed. Proceedings of the CRP highlighting main results were published in a special issue of the open source Genome Integrity journal in 2016-2017, volumes 7-8, (see editorial). The CRP was linked with 8 IAEA Technical Cooperation projects aimed at building biodosimetric capacity in Member States.

One of the highlights of the project was the Training Meeting “Biodosimetry in the 21st Century” arranged by IAEA in collaboration with the Hiroshima International Council for Health Care of the Radiation-Exposed (HICARE) in Hiroshima, Japan on 10-14 June 2013. The main objective was to develop the ability of biodosimetry laboratories to use mature and novel techniques in biological dosimetry for the estimation of radiation doses received by individuals and populations. The meeting was attended by 28 participants from 11 Member States. Most of the meeting participants continue to be involved with IAEA activities in various capacities whether as interns acquiring further work experience, as consultants contributing with their technical expertise, as participants in other CRPs, or as contributors to IAEA publications.

The CRP resulted in an international research biodosimetry network being formed, which contributed to a new follow-up CRP E35010 “Applications of biological dosimetry methods in radiation oncology, nuclear medicine, diagnostic and interventional radiology” (2017-2021).