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Radiation Biophysics – Services

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Biodosimetry is one of the services offered by the Radiobiology Section where a biomarker is used to estimate and quantify the radiation dose to which an irradiated person was exposed. These biodosimetric measurements are independent of physical measurements from film, TLD or OSL badges. However, it must be appreciated that all sources of information, being it biological, physical or from simulations, and a person’s recollection of the radiation incident need to be taken into account to arrive at the best estimate of the radiation dose.

On the basis of a blood sample, the radiobiology lab can perform a dose estimation by using one of the following techniques:

  • Gamma-H2AX foci Assay
  • Dicentric Chromosome (DIC) Assay
  • Cytokinesis Block Micronucleus (CBMN) Assay

In addition, recent biodosimetry R&D activities focus on fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) for chromosomal aberration analysis.

Please take note that this biodosimetry service is done in support  and under the auspices of the Directorate of Radiation Control in South Africa (SAHPRA. If you have questions related to biodosimetry in South Africa, please contact SAHPRA or Dr Charlot Vandevoorde.


Although radiobiology is considered to be a critical skill in South Africa, research and training in radiobiology has been well-established at iThemba LABS over the past 20 years. Radiobiology lectures, training and workshops are regularly organized and available on request in collaboration with the SAINTS office at iThemba LABS. Keep an eye on this webpage for more information or contact our SAINTS office.