Electron Scattering from 1-Methyl-5-Nitroimidazole: Cross-Sections for Modeling Electron Transport through Potential Radiosensitizers

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International Journal of Molecular Sciences


In this study, we present a complete set of electron scattering cross-sections from 1-Methyl-5-Nitroimidazole (1M5NI) molecules for impact energies ranging from 0.1 to 1000 eV. This information is relevant to evaluate the potential role of 1M5NI as a molecular radiosensitizers. The total electron scattering cross-sections (TCS) that we previously measured with a magnetically confined electron transmission apparatus were considered as the reference values for the present analysis. Elastic scattering cross-sections were calculated by means of two different schemes: The Schwinger multichannel (SMC) method for the lower energies (below 15 eV) and the independent atom model-based screening-corrected additivity rule with interferences (IAM-SCARI) for higher energies (above 15 eV). The latter was also applied to calculate the total ionization cross-sections, which were complemented with experimental values of the induced cationic fragmentation by electron impact. Double differential ionization cross-sections were measured with a reaction microscope multi-particle coincidence spectrometer. Using a momentum imaging spectrometer, direct measurements of the anion fragment yields and kinetic energies by the dissociative electron attachment are also presented. Cross-sections for the other inelastic channels were derived with a self-consistent procedure by sampling their values at a given energy to ensure that the sum of the cross-sections of all the scattering processes available at that energy coincides with the corresponding TCS. This cross-section data set is ready to be used for modelling electron-induced radiation damage at the molecular level to biologically relevant media containing 1M5NI as a potential radiosensitizer. Nonetheless, a proper evaluation of its radiosensitizing effects would require further radiobiological experiments.

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Funding Sponsor

U.S. Department of Energy


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