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Multi-disciplinary biodosimetric tools to manage high scale radiological casualties (MULTIBIODOSE)

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The aim of this multi-disciplinary collaborative project was to analyse a variety of biodosimetric tools and to adapt them to different mass casualty scenarios. The project was to result in the establishment of a biodosimetric network that is fully functional and ready to respond in case of a mass radiological casualty.

In the event of a large-scale radiological emergency, biological dosimetry is an essential tool that can provide timely assessment of radiation exposure of the general population and enable the identification of those exposed who should receive medical treatment. A number of biodosimetric tools are potentially available, but they must be advanced and validated for a large-scale emergency scenario.

Moreover new methods have to be tested with regards to their applicability in cases of a radiological casualty with a large number of potentially irradiated persons. These methods differ in terms of specificity and sensitivity to radiation, stability of signal and speed of performance. A large-scale radiological emergency can take different forms. Therefore, based on the emergency scenario, different biodosimetric tools can be used so that the dosimetric information can be made available with optimal speed and precision.

The following biodosimetric tools are validated and adapted:

  • the dicentric assay,
  • the micronucleus assay,
  • the gamma-H2AX assay,
  • the skin speckle assay,
  • the blood serum protein expression assay and
  • electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR)/optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dosimetry in components of pocket electronic devices.

These assays were chosen because they complement each other with respect to sensitivity, specificity to radiation and the exposure scenario, as well as speed of performance.

The project was very successful in terms of the development of new techniques and the networking of laboratories. The results of the project were published in peer reviewed papers. Training programs were developed for all the assays validated and established in the project and the automation were sought. An operational guideline addressing the multi-parametric approach for a large-scale human exposure was developed and disseminated among emergency preparedness and radiation protection organisations.

The MULTIBIODOSE project was funded by the security research framework programme (FP7-SEC-241536). It was launched on 1 May 2010, and ended in April 2013.

The final report and the Guidance for using MULTIBIODOSE tools in Emergencies for Radiation Emergency Response Organisations in Europe can be downloaded from the MULTIBIODOSE website.

State of 2018.09.11

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