Tumor reoxygenation after irradiation may contribute to a tumor's response to subsequent doses of radiation. The timing of reoxygenation in RIF-1 murine tumors was determined using electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) oximetry with intratumoral implantation of an oxygen-sensitive paramagnetic material (India ink) to monitor the$p{\rm O}_{2}$ in individual murine tumors before, during and after three different irradiation schemes. Radiation was given as a single 20-Gy dose or was split into two 10-Gy doses where the second dose of radiation was delivered at the minimum postirradiation tumor$p{\rm O}_{2}$ (24-h interval, hypoxic group) or where the second dose of radiation was delivered after reoxygenation had occurred (72-h interval, oxygenated group). The end point for tumor response was time taken to reach double the volume at the time of treatment. There were significantly longer tumor doubling times in the oxygenated compared to the hypoxic group, indicating that the measured changes in$p{\rm O}_{2}$ reflected changes in tumor radiosensitivity. A 24-h interval between doses resulted in a delay of reoxygenation in the tumors, while a 72-h interval resulted in a second cycle of hypoxia/reoxygenation. Our results suggest that repeated direct measurements of$p{\rm O}_{2}$ in tumors by EPR oximetry could be useful in timing radiation doses to achieve improved local control of tumors.

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