A geant4-DNA evaluation of radiation-induced DNA damage on a human fibroblast
Accurately modeling the radiobiological mechanisms responsible for the induction of DNA damage remains a major scientific challenge, particularly for understanding the effects of low doses of ionizing radiation on living beings, such as the induction of carcinogenesis. A computational approach based on the Monte Carlo technique to simulate track structures in a biological medium is currently the most reliable method for calculating the early effects induced by ionizing radiation on DNA, the primary cellular target of such effects. The Geant4-DNA Monte Carlo toolkit can simulate not only the physical, but also the physico-chemical and chemical stages of water ra-diolysis. These stages can be combined with simplified geometric models of biological targets, such as DNA, to assess direct and indirect early DNA damage. In this study, DNA damage induced in a human fibroblast cell was evaluated using Geant4-DNA as a function of incident particle type (gam-mas, protons, and alphas) and energy. The resulting double-strand break yields as a function of linear energy transfer closely reproduced recent experimental data. Other quantities, such as frag-ment length distribution, scavengeable damage fraction, and time evolution of damage within an analytical repair model also supported the plausibility of predicting DNA damage using Geant4- DNA.The complete simulation chain application “molecularDNA”, an example for users of Geant4- DNA, will soon be distributed through Geant4.
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