Compton scattering by internal shields based on melanin-containing mushrooms provides protection of gastrointestinal tract from ionizing radiation

Ekaterina Revskaya, Peter Chu, Robertha C. Howell, Andrew D. Schweitzer, Ruth A. Bryan, Matthew Harris, Gary Gerfen, Zewei Jiang, Thomas Jandl, Kami Kim, Li Min Ting, Rani S. Sellers, Ekaterina Dadachova, Arturo Casadevall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

There is a need for radioprotectors that protect normal tissues from ionizing radiation in patients receiving high doses of radiation and during nuclear emergencies. We investigated the possibility of creating an efficient oral radioprotector based on the natural pigment melanin that would act as an internal shield and protect the tissues via Compton scattering followed by free radical scavenging. CD-1 mice were fed melanin-containing black edible mushrooms Auricularia auricila-judae before 9 Gy total body irradiation. The location of the mushrooms in the body before irradiation was determined by in vivo fluorescent imaging. Black mushrooms protected 80% of mice from the lethal dose, while control mice or those given melanin-devoid mushrooms died from gastrointestinal syndrome. The crypts of mice given black mushrooms showed less apoptosis and more cell division than those in control mice, and their white blood cell and platelet counts were restored at 45 days to preradiation levels. The role of melanin in radioprotection was proven by the fact that mice given white mushrooms supplemented with melanin survived at the same rate as mice given black mushrooms. The ability of melanin-containing mushrooms to provide remarkable protection against radiation suggests that they could be developed into oral radioprotectors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)570-576
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Biotherapy and Radiopharmaceuticals
Volume27
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2012

Keywords

  • Apoptosis
  • Black mushrooms
  • GI syndrome
  • Melanin
  • Radioprotection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Pharmacology
  • Cancer Research

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Compton scattering by internal shields based on melanin-containing mushrooms provides protection of gastrointestinal tract from ionizing radiation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Revskaya, E., Chu, P., Howell, R. C., Schweitzer, A. D., Bryan, R. A., Harris, M., Gerfen, G., Jiang, Z., Jandl, T., Kim, K., Ting, L. M., Sellers, R. S., Dadachova, E., & Casadevall, A. (2012). Compton scattering by internal shields based on melanin-containing mushrooms provides protection of gastrointestinal tract from ionizing radiation. Cancer Biotherapy and Radiopharmaceuticals, 27(9), 570-576. https://doi.org/10.1089/cbr.2012.1318