Male mice of the RF strain, 6 to 8 weeks old, were given a single exposure to whole-body X-irradiation. Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) activity in the plasma and in various organs was determined at various time intervals after exposure. The plasma LDH level was increased within several hours after exposure to 600 R. The extent of the elevation of plasma LDH level was proportional to irradiation exposure in the range below about 900 R. Thymus and spleen, which are known to be radiosensitive, exhibited a marked loss of LDH by exposure to 600 R, whereas liver, kidney, and testis, which are radioresistant, showed no significant changes between control and irradiated mice. In the split-dose study, in which mice were given a second exposure to 600 R at 24 hours after a first 600-R exposure, no noticeable changes in plasma LDH levels were found after the second exposure. It was concluded that the radiation-induced elevation of plasma LDH level may be attributed mainly to the release of the enzymes from radiosensitive cells.

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