Karger, C. P., Debus, J., Peschke, P., Münter, M. W., Heiland, S. and Hartmann, G. H. Dose–Response Curves for Late Functional Changes in the Normal Rat Brain after Single Carbon-Ion Doses Evaluated by Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Influence of Follow-up Time and Calculation of Relative Biological Effectiveness. Radiat. Res. 158, 545–555 (2002).

This study investigated late effects in the brain after irradiation with carbon ions using a rat model. Thirty-six animals were irradiated stereotactically at the right frontal lobe using an extended Bragg peak with maximum doses between 15.2 and 29.2 Gy. Dose–response curves for late changes in the normal brain were measured using T1- and T2-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Tolerance doses were calculated at several effect probability levels and times after irradiation. The MRI changes were progressive in time up to 17 months and remained stationary after that time. At 20 months the tolerance doses at the 50% effect probability level were 20.3 ± 2.0 Gy and 22.6 ± 2.0 Gy for changes in T1- and T2-weighted MRI, respectively. The relative biological effectiveness (RBE) was calculated on the basis of a previous animal study with photons. Using tolerance doses at the 50% effect probability level, RBE values of 1.95 ± 0.20 and 1.88 ± 0.18 were obtained for T1- and T2-weighted MRI. A comparison with data in the literature for the spinal cord yielded good agreement, indicating that the RBE values for single-dose irradiations of the brain and the spinal cord are the same within the experimental uncertainty.

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