Visualization of complex DNA double-strand breaks in a tumor treated with carbon ion radiotherapy

Takahiro Oike, Atsuko Niimi, Noriyuki Okonogi, Kazutoshi Murata, Akihiko Matsumura, Shin Ei Noda, Daijiro Kobayashi, Mototaro Iwanaga, Keisuke Tsuchida, Tatsuaki Kanai, Tatsuya Ohno, Atsushi Shibata, Takashi Nakano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)


Carbon ion radiotherapy shows great potential as a cure for X-ray-resistant tumors. Basic research suggests that the strong cell-killing effect induced by carbon ions is based on their ability to cause complex DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). However, evidence supporting the formation of complex DSBs in actual patients is lacking. Here, we used advanced high-resolution microscopy with deconvolution to show that complex DSBs are formed in a human tumor clinically treated with carbon ion radiotherapy, but not in a tumor treated with X-ray radiotherapy. Furthermore, analysis using a physics model suggested that the complexity of radiotherapy-induced DSBs is related to linear energy transfer, which is much higher for carbon ion beams than for X-rays. Visualization of complex DSBs in clinical specimens will help us to understand the anti-tumor effects of carbon ion radiotherapy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number22275
JournalScientific reports
Publication statusPublished - 01-03-2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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