Olwell, P. M., Cottell, D. C., Ní Shúilleabháin, S., Maderna, P., Seymour, C., Mothersill, C. and Lyng, F. M. Cytoskeletal Reorganization and Altered Phagocytotic Ability in Primary Cultures of Rainbow Trout Hemopoietic Tissue Exposed to Low-Level Ionizing Radiation. Radiat. Res. 164, 45–52 (2005).
It has long been known that the hematopoietic tissue of mammals is one of the most radiosensitive tissues. In vitro studies on prawns have also shown that low doses of radiation have an extremely deleterious effect on cells cultured from this animal's blood-forming tissues. This raises questions about the relative effects of radiation in animals of different species. One of the most important aquatic animals, from both an economic and an ecological point of view, is the fish. With this in mind, primary cultures of the blood-forming tissues of rainbow trout were exposed to radiation followed by a morphological comparison between control and irradiated cultures. The cultured cells were characterized as macrophages after incubation with apoptotic human polymorphonuclear leukocytes and were classified as phagocytotic leukocytes. These cells were found in two morphological forms, stretched and rounded. It was shown that there was a commensurate increase in the number of stretched cells after irradiation. Radiation was also shown to cause a dose-dependent increase in the amounts of apoptosis in these cells over time. The phagocytotic efficacy of these cells was shown to inhibited by the exposure to low doses of radiation.