Research and analysis

Radiation doses investigated by chromosomal aberration analysis

This report (HPA-RPD-012) is a review of suspected overexposures investigated by chromosomal aberration analysis between 2003 and 2005.


HPA-RPD-012: doses in radiation accidents investigated by chromosomal aberration analysis XXIV: review of cases investigated, 2003-2005

Request an accessible format.
If you use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.


During the period 23 persons suspected of being overexposed to ionising radiation were referred to the Health Protection Agency (formerly the National Radiological Protection Board) for investigation by cytogenetic analysis.

No evidence of radiation exposure, as indicated by dicentric or translocation aberrations in chromosomes from blood lymphocytes, was found in 15 persons.

The most serious cases investigated involved a defective industrial x-radiography set and a poorly designed cell housing an electron beam accelerator. In all, 6 persons suffered localized erythema. Fortunately, the incident radiations were poorly penetrating so that their averaged whole body doses were low.

Published 1 February 2006