Fournier, C., Wiese, C. and Taucher-Scholz, G. Accumulation of the Cell Cycle Regulators TP53 and CDKN1A (p21) in Human Fibroblasts after Exposure to Low- and High-LET Radiation. Radiat. Res. 161, 675–684 (2004).

The accumulation of the cell cycle regulators TP53 and CDKN1A (p21/CIP1/WAF1) was investigated after exposure to X rays and carbon ions (170 keV μm−1) and xenon, bismuth and uranium ions (8900–15,000 keV μm−1) in normal human fibroblasts. The influence of the overall dose and the LET of these radiation types was studied systematically and the kinetics of the cell response was followed up to 24 h after exposure. The accumulation of TP53 protein was dependent on the dose and the LET, and TP53 levels declined to lower levels for all radiation types within 24 h after exposure. CDKN1A levels increased and peaked at 3 to 6 h after exposure. The persisting level of this protein at 24 h was strongly dependent on the dose and the LET for X rays and carbon ions. The exposure to very high-LET ions (8900–15,000 keV μm−1) did not lead to a further increase in CDKN1A, suggesting a saturation effect for the induction of this protein. The cellular effects of elevated CDKN1A after particle irradiation are discussed.

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