Chinese hamster V79 cells were preirradiated repeatedly with γ rays and then exposed to ultraviolet (uv) light or N-methyl-N′-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine (MNNG). The cell killing and induction of mutation at the hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase locus were examined following these treatments. Cells preirradiated with multiple fractions of γ rays exhibit the same sensitivity to uv light as the control cells with respect to cell survival and mutation induction. Following treatment with MNNG, resistance to cell killing was observed along with a decreased frequency of mutations induced. These results indicate that the progeny of cells irradiated with multiple fractions of γ rays could display subsequent changes in sensitivity to lethal and mutagenic effects of additional treatment with DNA-damaging agents.

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