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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 38  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 150-159

Computer-Assisted formulas predicting radiation-exposure-induced-cancer risk in interplanetary travelers: Radiation safety for astronauts in space flight to mars

Morristown-Hamblen Healthcare System, Morristown, TN, USA

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sung J Chung
3909 Vailwood Drive, Nashville, TN 37215
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jmedsci.jmedsci_125_17

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A clear quantitative relationship between the dose of total body ionizing radiation and mortality in humans is not known because of lack of human data that would enable us to determine the lethal dose for 50% of cases (LD50) in total body irradiation on earth or in probable future interplanetary travels. Analysis of human data has been primarily from radiation accidents, radiotherapy, and the atomic bomb victims. The author published the general mathematical formula that predicts mortality probability as a function of dose rate and duration of exposure to acute ionizing radiation in humans on the basis of data presented by Cerveny et al., employing the author's mathematical probacent model. Further, the author applied the general formula to the data on dose versus cancer mortality risk published by the United Nations Scientific Committee on the effects of atomic radiation and other investigators to construct general formulas expressing a relationship between dose and solid cancer or leukemia mortality probability after exposure to acute low-dose ionizing radiation in humans on earth. There is a remarkable agreement between formula-derived and published values of dose and solid cancer or leukemia mortality probability (P > 0.99). In this study, the above mortality formulas are applied to the measurements of the Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft containing the Curiosity rover (2012–2013) in estimating radiation safety for astronauts in a future space flight to Mars planned by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Results of the estimation obtained with a mathematical approach are presented in this study.

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