Biophysical dose measurement using electron paramagnetic resonance in rodent teeth

Rao F.H. Khan, W. J. Rink, D. R. Boreham

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11 Scopus citations


Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) dosimetry of human tooth enamel has been widely used in measuring radiation doses in various scenarios. However, there are situations that do not involve a human victim (e.g. tests for suspected environmental overexposures, measurements of doses to experimental animals in radiation biology research, or chronology of archaeological deposits). For such cases we have developed an EPR dosimetry technique making use of enamel of teeth extracted from mice. Tooth enamel from both previously irradiated and unirradiated mice was extracted and cleaned by processing in supersaturated KOH aqueous solution. Teeth from mice with no previous irradiation history exhibited a linear EPR response to the dose in the range from 0.8 to 5.5Gy. The EPR dose reconstruction for a preliminarily irradiated batch resulted in the radiation dose of (1.4±0.2)Gy, which was in a good agreement with the estimated exposure of the teeth. The sensitivity of the EPR response of mouse enamel to gamma radiation was found to be half of that of human tooth enamel. The dosimetric EPR signal of mouse enamel is stable up at least to 42days after exposure to radiation. Dose reconstruction was only possible with the enamel extracted from molars and premolars and could not be performed with incisors. Electron micrographs showed structural variations in the incisor enamel, possibly explaining the large interfering signal in the non-molar teeth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-196
Number of pages8
JournalApplied Radiation and Isotopes
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - 2003


  • Biodosimetry
  • EPR dosimetry
  • Electron paramagnetic resonance spectrometry
  • Geological age estimation
  • Mouse
  • Retrospective dosimetry
  • Tooth enamel


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