MOLECULAR MECHANISMS OF CELL ALTERATIONS CAUSED BY CHRONIC EXPOSURE TO LOW INTENSITY IONIZING RADIATION DUE TO CHERNOBYL ACCIDENT

Sidorik E.P., Burlaka A.P.*

Summary. The concept of the pathogenetic disturbances caused by the permanent prolonged exposure to the low doses of ionizing radiation has been put forward on the basis of our own results as well as the analysis of the literature data. Significant changes in the contents and activity of molecular carriers of electrons of the detoxifying and energetic systems of the cell membranes have been revealed in animals kept within the 30-km zone of Chernobyl NPS. Prolonged continuous exposure to the low-intensity ionizing radiation has also been shown to intensify the peroxide radical processes with the shift of the prooxidant-antioxidant balance towards free radical peroxide processes. ESR spectroscopy and spin traps technique has revealed significant increase in superoxide anion-radical generation rate and hydroxyl radical contents in the electron transport chain of endoplasmatic reticulum membranes in the liver. The coordination in the operation of the antioxidative enzymes responsible for the elimination of radical forms of the oxygen has been also disturbed. ESR method and low-temperature technique has detected the nitrosyl complexes of nonheme iron-sulphur proteins in the electron transport chains of the liver and kidney mitochondria. The disturbances of the functioning of adrenodoxine representing the iron-sulphur protein of the adrenal cortex mitochondria have been shown to result in the changes of steroid hydroxylation. The complex of the preventive measures for people in the deleterious environmental conditions should take into account the concept regarding the important role of the radical forms of the oxygen generated in the electron transport chains.

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