Archival data of leukocyte count and the differentials obtained from control and irradiated Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta) were statistically analyzed to understand the long-term effect of ionizing radiation exposure. Nine animals received total-body irradiation (TBI) of 7.2–8.4 Gy at 3–4 years old. Twelve animals served as age-matched controls with no radiation exposure. The complete blood cell count dataset was obtained during regular health exams every 2–6 months for 8 years from their age of 8 to 17 years old. Linear mixed models for leukocyte, neutrophil, lymphocyte, and monocyte counts and their percentages were successfully developed. Estimated marginal means calculated based on the models revealed statistically significant elevations in leukocyte and neutrophil counts and neutrophil percentages in irradiated animals compared to the controls. Lymphocyte percentage was significantly lower in irradiated animals. Longitudinal trends for both control and irradiated animals were consistent with expected trends of aging in hematopoiesis, which is skewed towards production of myeloid lineage cells such as neutrophils and monocytes rather than lymphoid cells. Longitudinal trends from irradiated animals suggested the age-related increase in neutrophils and decrease in lymphocytes were stronger than in the controls, although the difference did not reach statistical significance. The mechanism of the long-term effects in the hematopoietic system were not investigated. However, the results suggest ionizing radiation causes long-term effects on some of the factors implicated in hematopoietic aging, possibly inducing early-onset or accelerated aging in the hematopoietic system. Extended analysis with observations including before and after the follow-up period in this study will be beneficial to understand the timeline and features of the long-term response.
Longitudinal Analysis of Leukocyte Total and Differential Count of Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta) after Total-Body Irradiation
Yuiko Chino, John D. Olson, George W. Schaaf, J. Mark Cline, Thomas E. Johnson; Longitudinal Analysis of Leukocyte Total and Differential Count of Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta) after Total-Body Irradiation. Radiat Res 1 October 2023; 200 (4): 349–356. doi: https://doi.org/10.1667/RADE-23-00072.1
Download citation file: