Purpose: To characterize acute radiation syndrome (ARS) sequelae at doses intermediate between the bone marrow (H-ARS) and full gastrointestinal (GI-ARS) syndrome. Methods: Male minipigs, approximately 5 months old, 9-12 kg in weight, were irradiated with Cobalt-60 (total body, bilateral gamma irradiation, 0.6 Gy/min). Endpoints were 10-day survival, gastrointestinal histology, plasma citrulline, bacterial translocation, vomiting, diarrhea, vital signs, systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), febrile neutropenia (FN). Results: We exposed animals to doses (2.2-5.0 Gy) above those causing H-ARS (1.6-2.0 Gy), and evaluated development of ARS. Compared to what was observed during H-ARS (historical data: Moroni et al. 2011a, 2011c), doses above 2 Gy produced signs of increasingly severe pulmonary damage, faster deterioration of clinical conditions, and faster increases in levels of C-reactive protein (CRP). In the range of 4.6-5.0 Gy, animals died by day 9-10; signs of the classic GI syndrome, as measured by diarrhea, vomiting and bacterial translocation, did not occur. At doses above 2 Gy we observed transient reduction in circulating citrulline levels, and animals exhibited earlier depletion of blood elements and faster onset of SIRS and FN. Conclusions: An accelerated hematopoietic subsyndrome (AH-ARS) is observed at radiation doses between those producing H-ARS and GI-ARS. It is characterized by early onset of SIRS and FN, and greater lung damage, compared to H-ARS.
- Animal model